Dictionarium polygraphicum. Observation on Mineral Colours.

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.
1. Sublimate dissolv’d in fair water, and mix’d with a little spirit of urine, makes a milk white mixture in a moment; which by an addition of aqua fortis, becomes transparent again immediately.

2. If you sublime together two ounces of sublimate, and one ounce of tin glass, you will have a sublimate not inferior to the best orient pearls in the world.

3. Silver dissolv’d in aqua fortis, and evaporated to dryness, and having had water poured two or three times upon it, and evaporated till the calx is dry, leaves it of a snow whiteness; which rubb’d upon the skin (wetted with spittle, water, or the like) produces a blackness not to be got off in some days.
With this may be dyed ivory, hair, and horns in fair water, of a lasting black.

4. Coral dissolved by oil of vitriol, sulphur, or spirit of vinegar, and precipitated by oil of tartar, yields a snow whiteness.
The same of crude lead and quicksilver dissolv’d in aqua fortis. So butter of antimony rectified by bare effusion in a good quantity of fair water will (tho’ unctuous) be precipitated into that snow white powder, which (being wash’d from its corrosive salts) is call'd mercurius vitae. The like of which may be made without the addition of any mercury.

5. Mercury sublimate and precipitate yield (with the spirit of urine, hartshorn, or the like) a white precipitate; but with the solution of pot ashes, or other lixiviate salts, an orange tawney.
And if on a filtrated solution of vitriol, you put the solution of a fixed salt, there will subside a copious substance far from whiteness, which chymists call the sulphur of vitriol.

6. If two ounces of copper be mix’d with one ounce of tin, the reddishness will vanish; and if arsenick (calcin'd with nitre) in a just proportion, be mix’d with melted copper, it will be blanch'd both within and without.

7. Fine powders of blue bice, and yellow orpiment, slightly mixed, produce a good green; and a high yellow solution of a good gold in aqua regia, mix’d with a due quantity of a deep blue solution of crude copper in strong spirit of urine, produces a transparent green; and so blue and yellow enamel fus’d together in the flame of a lamp, being strongly blow'd on without ceasing, produces at length a green colour.

8. An urinous salt put in a large quantity into the dissolution of blue vitriol in fair water, turns the liquor and corpuscles (which resided) into a yellowish colour like yellow oker.

9. Verdegrease ground with sal armoniack, and the like (digested for a while in an horse dunghill) makes a glorious blue.

10. The true glass of antimony, extracted with acid spirits, (with or without wine) yields a red tincture.

11. Balsam of sulphur (of a deep red in the glass) shak'd about, or dropt on paper, gives a yellow stain.

12. If brimstone and sal armoniack powdered, of each five ounces, be mix’d with six ounces of quick lime in powder, and distill’d in a retort in sand by degrees, you will have a volatile spirit of sulphur of excellent redness, though none of the ingredients be so.
So also oil of anniseeds, mix'd with oil of vitriol, gives in a trice a blood red colour, which soon decays.

13. Fine silver dissolv’d in aqua fortis, and precipitated with spirit of salt, upon the first decanting the liquor, the remaining matter will be purely white; but lying uncovered, that which is expos'd to the ambient air will lose its whiteness.

14. Sublimate dissolv’d in a quantity of water and filtred, till it is as clear as crystal, mixed (in a Venice glass) with good oil of tartar per deliquium filtred (three or four drops to a spoonful) will yield an opacous liquor or a deep orange colour; after which, if four or five drops of vitriol be dropt in, and the glass strait way be strongly shaken, the whole liquor will (to admiration) be colourless without sediment.
And if the filtred solution of sublimed sal armoniac and sublimate, of each alike, be mixt with the solution of an alkali, it will be white.

15. Spirit of sal armoniack makes the solution of verdegrease an excellent azure; but it makes the solution of sublimate yield a white precipitate.

16. So the solution of filings of copper in spirit of urine (made by fermentation) produces a lovely azure colour, which with oil of vitriol (a few drops to a spoonful) is in a trice de priv'd of the same, and render'd like fair water.
And so also a solution of verdegrease in fair water, mixed with strong spirit of salt or dephlegmated aqua fortis, makes the greenness almost totally disappear.

17. Quicksilver mixt with three or four times its weight of good oil of vitriol, and the oil drawn off in sand, through a glass retort, leaves a snow white precipitate, which by the affusion of fair water, becomes one of the loveliest light yellows in the world, and a durable colour.

18. Tin calcin'd per se by fire, affords a very white calx, call’d putty; lead, a red powder call'd minium; copper, a dark or greyish powder; iron, a dirty yellowish colour, call'd crocus martis; and mercury, a red powder.

19. Gold dissolv’d in aqua regia, ennobles the menstruum with its own colour; silver coin dissolv’d in aqua fortis, yields a tincture like that of copper; but fine silver, a kind of bluishness. Copper dissolv’d in spirit of sugar (drawn off in a glass retort) or in oil or spirit of turpentine, affords a green tincture; but in aqua fortis, a blue.

20. Vermilion is made of mercury and brimstone sublimated together in a due proportion.

21. You may give glass a noble golden colour with quicksilver; but it is now coloured yellow, generally with calx of silver; yet shell silver (such as is generally us'd with pen or pencil) mixed with a convenient proportion of powdered glass in three or four hours fusion, gives a lovely sappharine blue.

22. Glass is ting'd green (by the glass men) with the calx of Venus; which calx, mixt with a hundred times its weight of fair glass, gives in fusion a blue coloured mass.

23. Putty (which is tin calcin'd) as it is white of it self, so it turns the purer sort of glass metal into a white mass, which when opacous enough serves for a white enamel.

24. The white enamel is as it were the basis of all those fine concretes, which goldsmiths and several artificers use in the curious art of enamelling.
For this white and fusible substance will receive into it self, without spoiling them, the colours of divers other mineral substances, which like it will endure the fire.

25. Glass is ting'd blue with the dark mineral call’d zaffer or zaffora; and with manganese or magnessa, in a certain proportion, glass may be ting'd of a red colour, and also of a purplish or murrey; and with a greater quantity, into that deep colour which passes for black.

26. Yellow orpiment, sublim’d with sea salt, yields a white and crystalline arsenick; arsenick calcin'd with pure nitre, being duly added to Venus in the fusion, gives it a whiteness both within and without.

27. So lapis calaminaris turns Venus or copper into brass.

28. And zink duly mix’d with Venus, when it is in fusion, gives it the noblest golden colour, that was ever seen in the best gold; but it will not endure various meltings.

29. Copper dissolv’d in aqua fortis will imbue several bodies of the colour of the solution.

30. Gold dissolv’d in aqua regia, will (tho’ not commonly known) dye horn, ivory, and other bones of a durable purple colour.

31. Lastly, crystals of silver, made with aqua fortis, (tho’ they appear white) will presently dye the skin, nails, hair, and bones, with a black not to be washed off.

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