A Dictionary of Arts: Azure.

A Dictionary of Arts, Manufactures, and Mines; containing A Clear Exposition of Their Principles and Practice

by Andrew Ure, M. D.;
F. R. S. M. G. S. Lond.: M. Acad. M. S. Philad.; S. PH. DOC. N. GERM. Ranow.; Mulh. Etc. Etc.

Illustrated with nearly fifteen hundred engravings on wood
Eleventh American, From The Last London Edition.
To which is appended, a Supplement of Recent Improvements to The Present Time.

New York: D Appleton & company, 200 Broadway. Philadelphia: George S. Appleton, 148 Chestnut St.


AZURE, the fine blue pigment, commonly called smalt, is a glass colored with oxyde of cobalt, and ground to an impalpable powder.

The manufacture of azure, or smalt, has been lately improved in Sweden, by the adoption of the following process:-

The cobalt ore is first roasted till the greater part of the arsenic is driven off. The redisnary impure black oxyde is mixed with as much sulphuric acid (concentrated) as will make it into a paste, which is exposet at first to a moderate heat, then to a cherry-red ignition for an hour. The sulphate thus obtained is reduced to powder, and dissolved in water. To the solution, carbonate of potash is gradually added, in order to separate the remaining portion of oxyde of iron; the quantity of which depends upon the precious degree of calcination. If it be not ebough oxydised, the iron is difficult to be got rid of.

When, from the color of the precipitate, we find that the potash separates merely carbonate of cobalt, it is allowed to settle, the supernatant liquor is decanted, and precipitated, by means of a solution of silicate of potash, prepared as follows:-

Ten parts of potash are carefully mixed with fifteen parts of finely ground flints or sand, and one part of pounded charcoal. This mixture is melted in a crucible of brick clay, an operation which requires steady ignition during 5 or 6 hours. The mass, when melted and pulverized, may be easily dissolved in boiling water, adding to it, by little at a time, the glass previously ground. The filtered solution is colorless, and keeps well in the air, if it contains one part of glass for 5 or 6 of water. The silicate of cobalt, which precipitates upon mixing the two solutions, is the preparation of cobalt most suitable for painting upon porcelain, and for the manufacture of blue glass. See COBALT.

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