DIE (Fr. dé, from Lat. datum, given), a word used in various senses, for a small cube of ivory, etc. (see Dice), for the engraved stamps used in coining money, etc., and various mechanical appliances in engineering. In architecture a "die" is the term used for the square base of a column, and it is applied also to the vertical face of a pedestal or podium.
The fabrics known as "dice" take their name from the rectangular form of the figure. The original figures would probably be perfectly square, but to-day the same principle of weaving is applied, and the name dice is given to all figures of rectangular form. The different effects in the adjacent squares or rectangles are due to precisely the same reasons as those explained in connexion with the ground and the figure of damasks. The same weaves are used in both damasks and dices, but simpler weaves are generally employed for the commoner classes of the latter. The effect is, in every case, obtained by what are technically called warp and weft float weaves. The illustration B shows the two double damask weaves arranged to form a dice pattern, while A shows a similar pattern made from two four-thread twill weaves. C and D represent respectively the disposition of the threads in A and B with the first pick, and the solid marks represent the floats of warp. The four squares, which are almost as pronounced in the cloth as those of a chess-board, may be made of any size by repeating each weave for the amount of surface required. It is only in the finest cloths that the double damask weaves B are used for dice patterns, the single damask weaves and the twill weaves being employed to a greater extent. This class of pattern is largely employed for the production of table-cloths of lower and medium qualities. The term damask is also often applied to cloths of this character, and especially so when the figure is formed by rectangles of different sizes.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)