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elasticity, affording the most re- elastic or non-elastic, to which the freshing and easy repose, either in case is equally impermeable. In this or even in the warmest cli- addition to which, they have several mates; that they may, when re- other advantages. They are not quired, be changed from the great- subject to be sloping on one side, est degree of softness to the hard- nor to those hard clumps or knots ness of a mattress, by moving the which feathers or down gradually handle of the air-pump, which is acquire in the course of a few placed commodiously within reach; years, or may be rendered soft to any re- " They are likewise extremely quired degree, by the exhausting light, the largest weighing only a pump, also within reach the few ounces, and portable also,

* In addition to these conve- being easily folded or rolled, after niences, they may at any time be being previously exhausted." rendered perfectly fresh and cool, by merely changing the air, by the THE ALCHYMISTS' LANalternate use of the air-pumps;

GUAGE. this may be effected in a few mi- We have already given a little nutes, without the person sleeping history of an Alebymist, and one on the beds being moved; hence of their tricks: the following may their great advantage to invalids, serve as a specimen of their Lanand their generally refreshing and guage :-Basil Valentine, of Erfurt salubrious effects. 1

in Germany, was one of the most ** Such machinery may at first celebrated of them, and was one of sight appear too philosophical for the first of those who introduced common use, and too cumbrous for metallic preparations into media sleeping-apartment: but as to cine. He was of course an oppothe first point, only a very small nent of the physicians of the school portion of ingenuity is required of Galen, who were attached to the to become conversant with their use of inert and simple medicines, application; and as to the se- In his book called the Chariot of cond, it is merely necessary to Antimony," he thus addresses his say, that the air pumps, together opponents : -"Ye wretched and bwith all the machinery for filling pitiful medicasters, who, full of deand exhausting the beds, being in- ceit, breathe I know not what closed under the bedsteads, and Thrasonick brags; infamous men, communicating with cords and tas- more mad than Bacchanalian fools, tesels (resembling bell-pulls) sus- who will neither learn nor dirty pended immediately above the pil- your hands with coals; you titular

lows, any alteration in the state or doctors, who write long scrolls of 1o temperature of the beds is thus receipts; you apothecaries, who

easily effected at any time re- with your decoctions fill pots no quired.

less than those in princes' courts, “The fact is, that they save much in which meat is boiled for the manual labour, as they require no is sustenance of some hundreds of making up; for by their elasticity men ;--you, I say, who have hithey rise immediately when left, therto been blind, suffer a collyrium and are then in the state of other to be poured into your eyes, and beds after being shaken and made permit me to anoint them with up, the counterpane, &c. being re- balsam, that this ignorance may turned as usual: hence they occa- fall from your sight, and that you sion no dust or film in the rooms, may behold truth as in a clear or on the furniture, which is always glass.” But though Valentine was the case where feather or down such an enemy to simples, his own beds are used.

49 powerful medicines did not always “For medical purposes also they succeed. It is said, that having may be filled with air at any re- thrown some antimony to the hogs, quired temperature; or with water, it purged them heartily, and that steam, or other fluids, wet or dry, afterwards they grew very fat.


From this, he imagined that his heated, the oxide took fire; the brother monks, who had become lower cock was then opened, and lean by mortification and fasting, the height to which the water rose and long prayers, would also thrive indicated the degree of absorption. on a dose of antimony; but Valen- Messrs. Pelletier and Dumas obtine was mistaken: instead of fat- tained Quinina, in a crystallized tening they died, and the medicine state, by melting it in vacuo, and which agreed so well with hogs allowing it to cool slowly. It was called Anti-moine, from killing absorbs from three to four hunmonks.

dredths of water when maceratXSUS

ed in this fluid, and probably

forms a hydrat. The sulphat of VEGETABLE ALKALIES.

quinina becomes phosphorescent From the Annales de Phys. Ch. for at 2129, and emits vitreous elec

151 October 1823. is tricity. The nitrats of quinina and The vegetable alkalies, a whole of cinchona, not before crystallized, class of bodies, which have been were obtained in this state: the discovered within a very few years, former crystallized in very short are worthy of the attention of Che- rhomboidal prisms, inclined to the mists. Only a few experiments base, and indivisible; the latter have been, before the present time, crystallized in rhomboidal prisms, made to ascertain theircomposition, perfectly rectangular, and divisiby Messrs. Pelletier and Dumas; ble. All the vegetable alkalies and they have now published analy-contain azot, and several of them, ses of each of them. They made use as cinchona and caffein, contain a of the oxide of copper, and many very considerable quantity. To precautions were necessary to ob- discover small quantities of azot taining correct results. The oxide in vegetable substances, the auwas procured by the calcination of thors made use of one of the two the nitrat: washed and heated following methods:The substance again, it reddened, and was ex- was distilled, and the product reposed heated to the action of hy-ceived in proto-nitrat of mercury, drogen gas to destroy the oxide. when, if ammonia was present, a The alkalies were heated to 212° in precipitate takes place of a dark vacuo, when infasible, and when grey ; or a portion of sugar and fusible were melted in the same oxide of copper, above which some circumstances. To produce com- of the substance in which azot is bustion, the vegetable matter was looked for, was burnt in a tube: put, with five times its weight of when the gas arising from the first oxide and a little pounded glass, mixture is pure carbonic acid, the into a tube, which, by means of second substance is set on fire, caoutchouc, was connected with and thus the smallest quantity of another tube filled with muriat of- azot becomes perceptible.* WARS lime, which, in its turn, communicated with another tube adapted R A to collect the gas. The operation REMARKABLE ALTERATION was conducted with the usual pre-V PRODUCED IN WOOD BY cautions. The quantities of car LIGHTNING.__ bonic acid, of water, and of azot, for In a letter sent from Greifswalde. were ascertained. In order to know of the 22d of November 1822, to the quantity of oxygen, the authors Mr. Bergrath Lenz, the following analysed a portion of their oxide circumstances are related :-- In the by means of a very simple appara- year 1821, in the month of August, tus, consisting of a graduated tube, bent at right angles, having a stop-W0* These results are confirmed by the cock at one end, and a ball at the experiments of Mr. Brande, published in other, in which the oxide was to

the last Number of the Quarterly Journal

of Science, &c., though that distinguishbe placed. The tube was filled ed Chemist failed in his attempt to cryswith pure hydrogen, and, on being tallize quinina.us


the lightning set fire to a windmill, red hot; on being withdrawn from situated near Greifswalde, and da- the fire, a rod of sulphur, seven maged several of the arms of the lines in diameter, was applied to mill. The miller, on going to re- its surface; in fourteen seconds pair his näill, found in the axletree the sulphur made a hole, perfectly an aperture in which he discovered circular, quite through the iron. 280 black balls, all of the same Another bar of iron, two inches size: some which were found under two lines in thickness, was pierced similar circumstances, near Tho- in fifteen seconds. The holes in ren, were considerably larger.” — both were precisely of the form of . This letter was accompanied by the sulphur employed, but rather one whole ball and a half one. The more regular on the side whence half ball was given to the writer of the sulphur issued than where it this notice for examination. It entered, the hole being here a little had the shape of an elliptical jagged. Steel in bars, made of old spberoid, the large axis of which files, was pierced even quicker than is 18, and the small axis 17 pa- the iron, and the holes were equally rallel lines. Their substance is of regular. Grey cast-iron, heated a dark grey colour, and not porous, almost to melting, was not altered of a brittle texture, and containing by the application of the sulphur small, hardly perceptible particles to its surface, and was not even of wood. On the surface, it ap- marked. I took a portion of this peared flaky. In a chemical point iron, shaped in the form of a cruof view, it appeared partly like cible, and I put in it sulphur and brown coal, partly like burnt wood; iron; on applying heat to it the for with ammonia, and still more forged iron and sulphur speedily easily with solution of potash in melted, but the grey cast-iron sufwater, it may be dissolved into a fered no alteration. dark brown fuid, with the excep-tion of the particles of wood, and UNIVERSAL CEMENT. when exposed to a current of air, A Cement made in the followand sufficiently heated, burned at ing manner, will unite, it is said, first with a flame, and afterwards either glass or porcelain, and either glowing, by which process the marble or metals: usual products of burnt wood, “To an ounce of mastic add as namely, carbonic acid, water, and much highly rectified spirits of wine an alkaline ash were formed. The as will dissolve it. Soak an ounce substance of these balls, therefore, of isinglass in water until quite soft, is nothing but the wood of the then dissolve it in pure rum or axletree in which they were found, brandy, until it forms a strong glue, crushed, half burnt to cinders, to which add about a quarter of an melted, and at last formed into ounce of gum ammoniac, well ruby balls by the lightning. The circular bed and mixed. Put the two mixform which they all had is undoubt- tures together in an earthen vessel edly the most remarkable circum- over a gentle heat; when well stance of the whole event, and de- united, the mixture may be put into st serves the attention of natural a phial and kept well stopped. nemato philosophers.dwbasa basis

* When wanted for use, the botelut

tle must be set in warm water, si Tapu

when the china or glass articles se TRON PIERCED BY SUL-1200 must be also warmed, and the ce-16 nosauf vd PHUR. 1919got be uume

ment applied. It will be proper te The following curious experi- that the broken surfaces, when care-sta ment is detailed in a letter from a fully fitted, shall be kept in close xa Colonel Evain to M. Gay Lussac, contact for twelve hours at least, ad and published in the Annales de until the cement is fully set; after 1 Chim. et Phy, for Jan. 1824:"I which, the fracture will be founder caused,” he says, " a bar of forged as secure as any part of the vessel, iron, 18 lines thick, to be heated and scarcely perceptible."oil gatto

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219 DIO O mod TTS baden 13 VITREOUS SAND Tubes. ter through the sand, which it POWER OF LIGHTNING, melted or fused in its passage

IN 1812, E. L. Irton, Esq. of into the earth. These tubes were Irton Hall, Cumberland, transmit- found to descend about thirty ted to the Geological Society spe- feet through the sand. The outcimens and descriptions of some side of the tube was coated with an tubes found in the sand near Drigg, agglutinated sand, which, when in Cumberland, Three were found, viewed with a lens, was found to and the diameter of each was about consist of black and white grains an inch and a half. The spot was mixed together, rounded by fusion. afterwards examined, and the sub- The sides of the tube were about stances subjected to a chemical the twentieth part of an inch thick, examination, by some of the mem- very hard and rigid, and the out. bers of the Geological Society. side interrupted by deep furrows, From their examination and experi- like the bark of an elin-tree. ments, it resulted, that these tubes (See Fig. 4.) On one spot in its de had been formed by the passage scent, the electric fluid had met of the lightning or electric mat- with a bed of pebbles of the size of

kidney beans; had dispersed and Annalen, a Mr. Hagen, Professor spread its fusing power, so as to of Chemistry at Konigsberg, gives form, not a tube, but a mass. an account of some peasants ob(Fig. 3.) In one place, about three serving the lightning to enter the feet under the surface, it had made earth, on July the 17th, near an attempt to pass between two the village of Rauschen, on the large pebbles, which flattened and borders of the Baltic. They found lessened the tube; and immediately two holes close to a high tree, below this it became crooked and where they saw the electric fluid contorted, as in Fig. 2. The fol- descend, and the earth was hot all lowing accounts of some similar round the spot. On a closer exdiscoveries were published in the amination, about a foot below the Annalen der Physik for June and July surface, immediately under one of 1823:--" I was," says Dr. Charles the holes, a tube was formed, and Gustavus Fiedler,“ in Stampfen,on parts of it found. It was, however, the borders of Hungary; and having very thin, giving reason to believe, procured the assistance of some of that the stream of electricity was the inhabitants who could speak not, in this instance, so great as in German, I set out, examining the some of the others; and the outside neighbourhood in search of a vitre- was covered with black dust, which ous-sand, or lightning-tube. After in its properties resembled charmuch trouble, I at length found coal. one, and the first which has been This latter account is of considiscovered in the dominions of the derable importance, as confirming Emperor of Austria. The place the conjecture that these tubes were where it was found was the highest caused by lightning. Hitherto this point of a low sapd-hill, about half was only conjecture; but we may a league from Zankendorf, near now set it down as fully ascertainMalaczka, in a northerly direction. ed. We may remark, in closing The upper part of the tube was this Article, that this fact furnishes nearly half an inch in diameter, another proof of the great benefits from which I concluded it would which may be expected to result sink very deep. After we had dug from imitating, by art, the prodown about two yards, we came to cesses of nature, whether the object a layer of pebbles, and then to a to be accomplished is to add to the layer of clay, below which I was mechanical power, or to the chesure the electric fluid would not mical knowledge of man. In this have penetrated. At first it had case we have an example of the taken a slanting, and afterwards a instant passage of electricity fusing perpendicular direction. Six inches one of the most infusible of subbelow the surface, a small branch, stances : thus we are taught, that four inches and a half long, (see electricity may be used as a powFig. 1.) went off from the main erful instrument of chemical anatube; and at the depth of thirty-two lysis; and we know that, following inches the tube divided itself into up this instruction, the galvanic two branches. These branches ter- battery has already been applied minated on the clay, one being se- to extort several secrets from Naven inches and a half long, and the ture. other nine, owing to the surface of the clay not being even. Below CHEMISTRY AS A SCIENCE. the tubes the traces of electricity,

Art. III. scattered over the clay, were visi

OXYGEN. ble, and it appeared as if it had OXYGEN, properly speaking, is been exposed to the action of fire. the name given by Chemists to the Immediately below, where the tube base of oxygen gas; but all atsplit into two branches, a large tempts hitherto made to procure pebble was found, which was, pro- this base, or to reduce oxygen gas bably, the cause of the division.” even to a liquid state, have been

In the July Number of the wholly fruitless, and therefore it

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