Dictionarium polygraphicum. Cinnabar.

Dictionarium Polygraphicum:
Or, The Whole Body of Arts Regularly Digested.
Vol I.
London: Printed for C. Hitch and C. Davis in Pater-noster Row, and S. Austen in St. Paul's Church Yard. MDCCXXXV.
CINNABAR, a mineral stone, red, heavy, and brillant, found chiefly in the quick-silver mines; call'd also vermilion.

The ordinary vermilion is nothing else but Cinnabar ground up with spirit of wine and urine.

Cinnabar, is either native or factitious.

The native or mineral Cinnabar, or vermilion, which is that above mentioned, is found in most places where there are quicksilver mines; yet it is true also, that it has mines of its own, those in Spain are very famous; the French also have some of them in Normandy.

It may be esteem'd as marcasite of quicksilver, or rather as quicksilver petrified and fixt, by means of sulphur and a subterraneous heat. Chymistry being found to reduce it without much trouble or loss to the nature of mercury, each pound of Cinnabar yields fourteen ounces of mercury.

Accordingly, the principal property and use of this mineral, is to yield a most excellent mercury.

The best mineral Cinnabar is of a high colour, brillant and free from the stone.

Factitious or artificial Cinnabar, or vermilion is form'd of a mixture of mercury and sulphur, sublim’d and thus reduc’d into a kind of stone.

The best is of a high colour, full of fibres like needles.

The method of preparing factitious CINNABAR.
They take six ounces of sulphur, and eight of quick-silver, they mix them well, then set them on the fire till part of the sulphur is con sum’d, and the powder remain black.
After this, it is sublim'd once or twice in open pots, at the bottom of which the Cinnabar remains, very heavy, and streak'd with the lines or needles, some red, others brillant like silver.
This is us’d by painters as a colour, it being a very vivid red, but not drying without some difficulty; Cinnabar or Vermilion is rendred more beautiful by grinding it with gum water, and a little saffron, those two drugs preventing it from growing black.

There is likewise a BLUE CINNABAR, made by mixing two parts of sulphur with three of quicksilver, and one of sal armoniac; these being sublim’d, produce a beautiful blue substance, whereas quicksilver and sulphur alone produce a red.

Cinnabar being a compound of mercury and sulphur, must be divested of the impurities it contracts from those minerals, which impurities darken its lustre, and cause it to change.
Grind Cinnabar in stone with fair water, on a marble or porphyry, put it into a glass or earthen vessel to dry, then put urine to it, and mix it so that it be thoroughly wet and swim; then let it settle, and the Cinnabar being precipitated or fallen, pour off the urine by inclination, and put fresh in the room of it, leaving it so all night, and repeating the same change for four or five days, till the Cinnabar be thoroughly purified.
Continue the process with beating up the white of an egg, which mixing with fair water, pour it upon the Cinnabar, and stir the whole about with a walnut-tree stick; change this liquor two or three times as above, and keep the vessel close stopp'd up, or closely covered for fear of dust, which would spoil the Cinnabar, and when you would use it, temper it with gum water, with this it will not change its colour.

Another way.
First pulverize the Cinnabar, and then grind it on a porphyry with the urine of a child, or with brandy, and drie it in the shade.
If you would intirely divest it of all its obscurities, and give it a brighter or redder countenance, infuse in the brandy a little saffron, or put in a little urine and grind the Cinnabar with this liquor.

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