FLOORCLOTH, a rough flannel cloth used for domestic cleaning; also a generic term applied to a variety of materials used in place of carpets for covering floors, and known by such trade names as kamptulicon, oil-cloth, linoleum, corticine, cork-carpet, etc. Kamptulicon (Greek, 'flexible', 'thick') was patented in 1844 by E. Galloway, but did not attract much attention till about 1862. It was essentially a preparation of india-rubber masticated up with ground cork, and rolled out into sheets between heavy steam-heated rollers, sometimes over a backing of canvas. Owing to its expensiveness, it has given place to cheaper materials serving the same purpose. Oil-cloth is a coarse canvas which has received a number of coats of thick oil paint, each coat being rubbed smooth with pumice stone before the application of the next. Its surface is ornamented with patterns printed in oil colours by means of wooden blocks. Linoleum (linum, flax, oleum, oil), patented by F. Walton in 1860 and 1863, consists of oxidized linseed oil and ground cork. These ingredients, thoroughly incorporated with the addition of certain gummy and resinous matters, and of pigments such as ochre and oxide of iron as required, are pressed on to a rough canvas backing between steam-heated rollers. Patterns may be printed on its surface with oil paint, or by an improved method may be inlaid with coloured composition so that the colours are continuous through the thickness of the linoleum, instead of being on the surface only, and thus do not disappear with wear. Lincrusta-Walton is a similar material to linoleum, also having oxidized linseed oil as its base, which is stamped out in embossed patterns and used as a covering for walls.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)