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Miscellaneous—Answers to Correspondents.
Oct. 13, 1865.
2. It is destroyed in large towns, and with special hours, the stirring being continued. After this time the rapidity in crowded, close, and filthy localities.
whole is transferred to a centrifugal machine, and the 3. Ozone gives to oxygen properties which enable it to acid separated. The wood is then washed for two or three support life. In this respect it acts like heat-its effects days in cold water, afterwards boiled in a weak soda soluare destroyed by great heat.
tion, again well washed in cold water, and then dried. It 4. Ozone diffused through air in minute quantities pro- is now ready for the final operation, which consists in duces, on inhalation, distinct symptoms of acute catarrh-soaking it for ten or fifteen minutes in a solution of 26 parts common cold.
of nitrate of potash in 220 parts of water. After this, it ş. When animals are subjected to ozone in large quan- is carefully dried at a temperature not exceeding 44° C.; tities, the symptoms produced, at a temperature of 75°, the very fine dust is then separated by means of a drum are those of inflammation of the throat and mucous mem- sieve, and the remainder is ready for market. -Chem, branes generally, and at last congestive bronchitis, which Central Blatt, No. 44, p. 704. in carnivorous animals is often rapidly fatal.
Chromometrical Analysis.-Messrs. Siemens and 6. When animals are subjected for a long period to ozone in small proportions, the agent acts differently, according quantity of copper contained in a solution by comparing
Halske have devised an apparatus for determining the to the animal. The carnivora die, after some hours, from its colour with that of a standard solution. The appadisorganisation of the blood; but the herbivora will live ratus consists essentially of two vertical tubes fixed side live for weeks, and will suffer from no acute disease. 7. The question whether the presence of ozone in the The other tube dips into a larger tube, in the bottom of
by side, in one of which is placed a piece of blue glass. air can produce actual disease must be answered cautiously. which is a piece of white glass. Light is reflected from Science has yet no actual demonstrative evidence on the a mirror through both these tubes. The substance to be point. But the facts approach to demonstration that com- analysed having been dissolved in acid, a certain quantity mon cold – catarrh-is induced by this agent. All else is of ammonia is added, until the well-known blue colour as yet speculative. 8. During periods of intense heat of weather, the ozone larger tube. By means of a suitable mechanism, the
is obtained. The solution is then to be placed in the loses its active power. Un dead organic matter undergoing putrefaction varying the thickness of the layer of the solution to be
frame carrying the two tubes is moved up or down, thus 9. ozone acts rapidly-it entirely deodorises by breaking up tested through which the light passes, until the depth of the ammoniacal products of decomposition, at the same tint of the blue glass and of the solution appear to be time it hastens the organic destruction,
10. There is an opposite condition of air in which the the same. The length of the column may be read off on oxygen is rendered negative in its action, as compared with pared with a standard solution, tħe amount of copper in
a scale, and the blue glass having been previously comthe air when it is charged with ozone. Air can thus rendered negative by merely subjecting it over and over Comparative determinations by ordinary analysis gave
the fluid under examination may be easily estimated. again to animals for respiration. The purification of such air from carbonic acid and other tangible impurities does very slight variations in the results. -- Reader. not render it capable of supporting healthy life ; but ozone
Test for Otto of Roses.- Hager mixes five drops restores the power. In a negative condition of air, the of the otto to be tested with twenty drops of pure con. purification of the organic matter is greatly modified, and centrated sulphuric acid. Whether the oil be adulterated the offensive products are increased. Wounds become
or not, a thick yellowish brown or reddish brown mixture unhealthy, and heal slowly in such negative air.
results. When this mixture is cold, it is shaken up with 11. There is no demonstrative evidence as yet that any three drachms of absolute alcohol. If now the otto is diseases are actually caused by this negative condition of pure, a tolerably clear yellowish brown solution results, air ; but the inference is fair that diseases which show a which, after heating to boiling, remains clear. But if the putrefactive tendency are influenced injuriously by a nega- otto is adulterated with geranium, palm rose, or pelartive condition of the oxygen of the air. It is also probable gonium oil, the solution remains very cloudy, and in some that during this state decomposing organic poisoning cases a darker fluid separates, in which a deposit forms. matters become more injurious.
On heating this solution, the sediment melts together, and 12. As ozone is used up in crowded localities, and as it from the size of the mass the author infers the degree of is essential that ozone should be constantly supplied in adulteration. If, for example, the mass has one-fourth order to sustain the removal of decomposing substances the volume of a drop, he concludes that the otto was and their products, no mere attention to ventilation and mixed with at least one-third of foreign oil. If the otto other mechanical measures of a sanitary kind can be fully is adulterated with spermaceti, this substance separates effective unless the air introduced be made active by ozone. and floats on the surface of the solution, or remains susFever hospitals and other large buildings in towns should pended in the liquid as a scaly crystalline mass. The be artificially fed with ozonised air.
above test is founded on the circumstance that pure otto Schultze's White Gunpowder.–This is tri-nitro. of rose forms, with strong sulphuric acid, a resinous subcellulose, prepared from saw.dust by the following pro- stance, which is completely soluble in absolute alcohol ;
The saw-dust is first boiled for three or four while the substance formed with other oils is only parhours with a weak soda solution, and then boiled a second tially soluble. Guibourt has observed that the odour of time with a fresh lot of the same solution. It is then pure otto is not affected by mixture with strong sulphuric washed in running water, afterwards steamed for fifteen acid, but if other oils are present a disagreeable odour is deminutes, and then again washed in running water for veloped.--Zeitscht. für Analyt. Chem., No. 4, 1864, p. 479. twenty-four hours. It is now bleached with chlorine or chloride of lime, boiled in water, once more washed in a stream, and now dried. The saw-dust is now ready to
ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS, be treated with nitric acid. For this purpose a mixture of 40 parts strong nitric acid (1:48 to 1:50) are mixed Alpha. - Cochineal and oxalic acid. The quantities to be deterwith 100 parts of sulphuric acid (1584); and the mixture mined by strength of colour required. is allowed to stand two hours to cool. One hundred parts
E. M. N.-We do not dispute that caustic soda exposed to air of this mixture are then placed in an iron vessel, around becomes carbonate ; but our correspondent asserted that the caustio which a stream of cold water circulates, and six parts of
soda parted with oxygen. This is incorrect.
C. S.-Ignition of solid residue with proper precautious is the most the saw-dust are gradually added, stirring all the time. satisfactory, but not perfect method. The saw-dust is allowed to remain in the acid two or three Received.--99; C. Greville Williams, F.R.S.
and siskin-green uranites with the true copper uranite ; AND ANALYTICAL
I have not as yet met with any green autunite. The CHEMISTRY.
following analyses were made with a very pale Cornish
specimen; the lime, it will be seen, is in very insignifiOn the Presence of Didymium in Churchite, cant proportion; the presence of nearly 2 per cent. of by C. GREVILLE WILLIAMS, F.R.S.
As,06 replacing part of the P,0is, however, worthy In the course of some recent experiments upon
preparation of pure cerium, I found Gladstone's optical test
61'00 per cent. always to reveal the presence of didymium in oxide of
8:56 cerium, no matter how carefully prepared by any of the
.62 methods at present in use. It is also well known that
13'99 13.94 the oxide of cerium, from all the minerals which have as yet been discovered, contains didymium and lanthanum.
14'16 This made me desirous of ascertaining whether the new and highly interesting mineral described by Professor
100'24 Church in the CHEMICAL News for September 15, 1865 The following are the percentages demanded by the (and for which I venture to propose the name of churchite), formula before given :contained cerium only, as, if so, it would be the only one
61.18 known from which pure cerium compounds could be pre
Cuo pared. It is true that Church assumes in his notice that
15'10 the oxide of cerium obtained by him consisted of the
15:28 mixed earths ; but as he does not state that he specially
These numbers closely accord with the experimental searched for the other metals, I presume he took it for
values previously recorded. The specimen analysed, granted that didymium and lanthanum were present in the oxide weighed by him. I, therefore, seized the first though it might easily have been mistaken for autunite, opportunity of optically examining a solution of the The arsenic acid has not, I believe, been previously ob
contained the full percentage of CuO found in uranite. mixed cerium earths from churchite, the result being served in this mineral. The deficiency of water arose that the lines indicative of didymium showed themselves from the over-drying of the powdered substance. In in the most distinct and beautiful manner.
The above experiment with the prism serves, there. vacuo orer oil of vitriol it loses part of its water of crysfore, to confirm the results of Professor Church's chemical tallisation, and becomes yellow where a thin layer of the analysis, and indicates the cerium earths in churchite to powdered mineral is exposed. In the ordinary air of a consist of the same mixture found in cerite, allanite, the water lost.
room it reassumes its natural tint, and regains part of orthite, &c.
i Churchite is so Itıle known at present, and appears to be so excessively rare, that some time will probably PHARMACY, TOXICOLOGY,&o. elapse before enough will be obtained to enable the presence of lanthanum to be determined chemically.
Report on the Quantity of Alkaloid in various Speci,
mens of Citrate of Iron and Quinine, by Mr. J. C, Revision of the Mineral Phosphates, by A. H. CIIURCH,
BRAITIIWAITE.* M.A. Oxon., Professor of Chemistry, Royal Agricul. In a former paper, I gave the results of my investigation tural College, Cirencester.
as to the quantity of alkaloid contained in various speNo. V. URANITE.
cimens of this valuable medicine, and expressed my
opinion that quinidine, if not cinchonine, would be found (Continued from vol. X., page 291.) There is no occasion to question the generally-received firmed by further investigation.
in more than one sample. This opinion has been conformula for uranite (the torberite of Brooke and Miller).
In sample No. 1, containing 1504 per cent. of quinine Assuming the atomic weights of copper 63'5, and that
(equal to 2.35 per cent. of the citrate), I found neither of uranium 120, the expression for uranite is,
quinidine nor cinchonine, but the quantity experimented 2Ü,03,0u0,P,03 + gaq.
upon was very small.
No. 2, with 1.52 per cent. of quinine (equal to 2.375 This, with the lower atomic weight, becomes in the per cent of the citrate, contained neither quinidine nor mineralogical notation
ciochonine. 2Ü,,Cu, P + 8H.
These two alkaloids were also absent in No. 3, conBut there is one point connected with the chemistry, cent. of the citrate); in No. 4, containing 4: 2 per cent.
taining 3.732 per cent. of quinine (equal to 5.831 per of this mineral which seems to demand inquiry: The of quinine (equal to 6-437 per cent. of citrat ); în No. 5, existence of a lime-uranite has been well established; it containing 4:36 per cent. of quinine (equal to 7-437_per is now usually distinguished as o good species, and cent. of citrate); and in No. 6, containing 6 per cent. of termed autunite. In autunite, which is generally of a pure lemon or sulphur yellow colour, the oxide of copper
quinine (equal to 9.375 per cent. of citrate). of the green uranite has been entirely replaced by lime.
No. 7 contained 7.372 per cent. of alkaloid, which, if But there exist numerous specimens of uranite which pure quinine, would represent 11'518 per cent. of the
citrate. This sample, however, contained only a mere are exactly intermediate in colour between uranite and trace of quinine, the great proportion of alkaloid being autunite; these have sometimes been classed with one species, sometimes with the other. From my experi- tion. I have reason to believe that cinchonine also occurs
quinidine, which crystallised out from the ethereal soluments I believe one may be justified, where other characters are indeterminate, in classing all apple-green * Read at the meeting of the Pharmaceutical Conferenco.
VOL. XII, No. 307;-OCTOBER 20, 1865.
CHEMICAL News, 184 Quantity of Alkaloid in Citrate of Iron and Quinine.
Oct. 20, 1865. in this sample, but my investigation is not yet satisfac- The name of the maker, however, is omitted upon the torily completed.
label. No. 8 contained 9'292 per cent. of alkaloid, which, No. 18 occurred in fine golden scales, much resembling were it quinine, would represent 14.518 per cent of the those of No. 24. Exposed to a temperature of 60°, it citrate ; but, in this case also, it consisted of quinidine, absorbed moisture and became adherent to the paper with only a mere trace of quinine. No cinchonine could upon which it was placed. It dissolved readily in water, be detected.
yielding a yellowish solution which had an acid reaction No. 9, containing 11:24 per cent. of quinine (equal to upon test-paper, and possessed but slight bitterness, as 17956 per cent. of the citrate), was free from quinidine most of the others. and cinchonine. The same remark applies to No. 10, The precipitate yielded by ammonia was not very containing 12:26 per cent. of quinine (equal to 19*162 copious. It had, when dry, a light brownish colour, per cent of citrate), and to No. 11, containing 12.94 per with a faint white bloom over the surface, and firmly cent. of quinine (representing 20'22 per cent. of the adhered to the filter. citrate).
From two analyses of twenty-five grains each, I In No. 12, containing 1472 per cent. of quinine obtained o•69, 073 ; mean oo71, equal to 2.84 per cent. (oqual to 23 per cent. of citrate), a small quantity of of quinine, and 4437 per cent. of citrate of quinine. quinidine was found, but no cinchonine.
This was entirely soluble in ether, yielding a solution of Traces of quinidine, but none of cinchonine, were also a very pale colour. detected in No. 13, containing 140784 per cent. of qui- No. 19. This specimen consisted of very small scales nine (equal to 23:09 per cent. of citrate); in No. 14, of a dull olive-yellow colour: Exposed to the air at a containing 14.88 per cent. of quinine (representing 23:25 temperature of 60°, it remained unchanged for a conper cent. of citrate); and in No. 15, containing 15*84 siderable time, but ultimately absorbed moisture and per cent. of quinine (representing 24*75 per cent. of the became adherent to the paper upon which it was placed. citrate).
It dissolved readily in water, yielding a clear yellow It had been my intention to have completed the sub- solution, which had an acid reaction upon test-paper, ject in this paper by estimating the quantity of iron but possessed but little bitterness. Only a small contained in each sample, but I have been prevented quantity of precipitate was thrown down by ammonia, doing so by indisposition, and must therefore postpone which, when dry, very much resembled that immediately it to a future period. I subjoin the result of my exa- preceding it, being of a light brown colour, with a white mination of nine more examples, seven of which (Nos. bloom orer it, and closely adherent to the filter. 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, and 23) were kindly forwarded to From two analyses of twenty-five grains each, I me by Dr. Attfield.
obtained 1:06, 1'03 ; mean 7.045, equal to 4:18 per cent. No. 16.—This specimen had become damp, and had of quinine, and 6.531 per cent. of its citrate. run into a mass of a dark olive-green colour. It dis- It dissolved entirely in ammonia, yielding a pale solved readily in water, yielding a solution of a greenish- yellow solution. yellow colour, and somewhat turbid. It had an acid
No. 20 occurred in small granules, and it appeared as reaction upon test-paper, and possessed only, a very if it had been damp and had run together, and been slight bitter taste. The precipitate, by ammonia, when afterwards dried. It had a very dark olive colour, dry, was of a brownish colour, with a slight whitish approaching a blackish hue. Exposed to a temperature bloom upon it, closely adherent to the paper, and in of 60°, it remained unaffected. "It dissolved readily in small quantity only. As this specimen was difficult to remove from the turbid.' It had an acid reaction upon test-paper, and a
water, yielding a yellowish solution, which was slightly bottle in which it was contained, and I had a very small
bitter taste, bu of much less intensity than that of quantity of it only, I operated upon the whole, which Nos. 22 and 23. The precipitate by ammonia, when weighed 62 grains, and obtained i grain of quinine, or dry, was not very bulky; it had a very dark colour, and 1.603 per cent., equal to 2'504 per cent. of the citrate of separated very readily from the filter. quinine. This had merely a private mark upon the label, and was one of the samples forwarded to me by obtained 1'12, 109; mean I'105, equal to 4-42 per cent.
From two analyses of twenty-five grains cach, I Dr. 'Attfield. It dissolved entirely in ether, yielding a of quinine, and 6-906 per cent of its citrate. pale yellow solution. No. 17 occurred in the form of golden-coloured scales,
It was almost entirely soluble in ether, yielding a much resembling those of No. 24, but not so bright, solution of a yellowish colour, but less deep than the being covered with a slight bloom. Exposed to the air two preceding ones. at a temperature of 60°, they absorbed moisture, and ran No. 21. This sample was composed of small granules into a gum-like mass firmly adherent to the paper on of a dark olive brown colour, intermixed with a few which they were placed. This specimen dissolved small scales of a somewhat lighter colour. Had readily in water, yielding a clear yellow solution which apparently got damp and been dried. Exposed to the had an acid reaction upon test-paper, and was less bitter air at a temperature of 60°, it remained unchanged. It to the taste than either of the other specimens except dissolved readily in water, yielding a solution of someNo. 16. The precipitate by ammonia, when dry, shrank what deeper colour than either of the preceding, slightly to a mere nothing; it had a yellowish-brown colour, and turbid, having an acid reaction upon test-paper, and an was completely adherent to the paper. From two intensely bitter taste, but not chaly beate. With amanalyses of twenty-five grains each, I obtained 0·68, 0.68, monia it yielded a copious precipitate, which, when dry, equal to 272 per cent. of quinine, or 4*25 per cent. of had a dark brown colour with a white bloom, and a very citrate of quinine. When treated with ether it was resinous appearance. entirely dissolved, yielding a solution of a very pale From two analyses of twenty-five grains each I colour. This preparation is stated upon the label " to obtained 3.25, 3'22 ; mean 3'235, equal to 12.94 per contain 25 per cent. of citrate of quinine,” and it was cent. of quinine, and 20'218 per cent. of its citrate. also “ verbally guaranteed to do so ” when purchased. This was almost entirely soluble in ether, and the
185 Oct. 20, 1865. solution closely resembled those of Nog. 22 and 23 in modity. It may be reasonably supposed that those colour.
manufacturers who have adopted the reprehensible No. 22. This consisted of bright golden-coloured practice will, finding that the revenue is at present scales, rather darker in colour than No. 24. Exposed powerless to repress their unscrupulous operations, to the air at a temperature of 60°, it was unaffecteil. It avail themselves of the opportunity to increase, as far dissolved very readily in water, yielding a somewhat as possible, the proportion of lime which they add to turbid yellowish solution with an acid reaction upon their snuff: that they are doing this is, I think, proved test-paper, and a strongly bitter taste, but was not very by the fact that several samples of high-dried snuff from chalybeate. The precipitate thrown down by ammonia Ireland have been recently analysed and found to conwas copious, and when dried had a brownish resinous tain lime in proportions varying from 20 to 25 per cent., appearance, its surface being covered with a white quantities considerably in excess of those found in prebloom, and was readily separable from the filter. vious years. The adulteration of snuff by other mate
From two analyses of twenty-five grains each, I rials than lime is now, I believe, but seldom attempted, obtained 3-46, 3'54; mean 3'5, equal to 14 per cent. of and this absence of fraud in the trade is no doubt partly quinine, and 21:87 per cent. of its citrate.
due to the conviction which the fraudulent manufacturers It was almost entirely soluble in ether, yielding a have, from costly experience, at length arrived at, that yellowish solution.
owing to improved modes of analysis, the efficient use No. 23 was composed of golden-olive scales, having a of the microscope, and the vigilant supervision of the greenish shade. Exposed to the air at the temperature revenue officers, it has become very unsafe to sophisticate of 60°, it was unaffected. It dissolved readily in water, their commodities; and partly to the sufficiency of the yielding a yellowish solution much the same as the pre- law, to deal with such cases of fraud, and to the large reding, but not quite so clear, and having an acid reaction penalties imposed when the fact of adulteration has been upon test-paper, and a strongly bitter but not chals- proved. beate taste. The precipitate by ammonia much re- Only one detection of importance of the adulteration sembled that of No. 22 in appearance, having a resinous of snuff with materials other than lime has been made aspect and a brownish colour, covered with a white during the past year, about half a ton of snuff contain: bloom, and separated pretty readily from the paper. ing a large proportion of ground fustic having been
From two analyses of twenty-five grains each, I seized on the premises of a manufacturer in London. obtained 376, 3076, equal to 15'04 per cent. of quinine, 'Two samples were also found to contain about 58 per or 23.5 of its citraté.
cent. of sand. It was almost entirely soluble in ammonia, and closely
Samples of Snuf Analysed. resembled the preceding in the colour of its ethereal
Number of Samples. solution.
Adulterated. No. 24 occurred in the form of very bright fine golden 1862.
8 green scales. Exposed to the air at a temperature of 1863.
57 60°, it remained unaltered. It dissolved very readily in 1864.
16 water, yielding a fine golden-yellow solution, which was
Pepper.- Perhaps no article subject to revenue duties beautifully clear, and had an acid reaction upon test- is more sophisticated than pepper, a fact to which, in my paper. It was intensely bitter, but not chalybeate. former Reports, I have frequently adverted. That a subAmmonia produced a very copious precipitate, which, stance which is only used in small quantities as a condiwhen dry, was of a light brown colour, and of a very ment should be so liable to adulteration may seem resinous appearance.
remarkable if the circumstance be overlooked that it may From two analyses of twenty-five grains each, I be mixed with its own weight of illicit and almost worthobtained 4'2, 4:18; mean 4'19, equal to 16*72 per cent. less ingredients without its being rendered unsaleable on of quinine, or 26°75 per cent. of its citrate.
the score of the want of pungency. It is not surprising, This is entirely soluble in ammonia, yielding an almost therefore, that needy and dishonest retailers should clear solution. I may mention that this specimen was attempt to secure a little extra profit on an article which prepared by my own formula, a little additional quinine can be so easily tampered with, or that unscrupulous having been purposely added, to ascertain if it were persons who may be extensively engaged in the grindpossible to combine a greater amount of citrate of ing and sale of the commodity should seek to obtain large quinine than 25 per cent., and at the same time retain gains by resorting to the fraudulent practice. brilliancy of colour and appearance, and ready solubility Under this head thirteen samples have been analysed, of the medicine.
seven of which were found to be illicit. Four samples 54, Kentish Town Road.
were imitation pepper so skilfully prepared as to be in
distinguishable by the naked eye from genuine black THE EXCISE LABORATORY.
pepper, with which they were, no doubt, intended to have
been mixed. These samples contained about 22 per cent. REPORT FROM THE PRINCIPAL TO THE COMMISSIONERS sand, and the husks of red mustard seed. One sample
of gypsum (sulphate of lime), the remainder being starch, OF THE INLAND REVENUE, 1865.
was composed of a mixture of pepper with 45 per cent. (Continued from page 174.)
of imitation pepper, whilst two samples of white pepper Snuff.—The adulteration of snuff with large quan- were largely adulterated with ground rice, one of them tities of lime still continues to be practised in to the extent of 20 per cent. Ireland, the existing law being insufficient for its sup
Samples of Pepper Analysed. pression. In my last Report I dwelt at some length
Number of samples. upon this subject, and endeavoured to point out the
Genuine. Adulterated. pernicious effects the fraud, and that the use of lime
1862 in the manufacture of snuff was not only unnecessary,
30 but that it actually depreciated the value of the coin
The Excise Laboratory.
Oct. 20, J865.
Coffee.—The selling of mixtures of coffee and chicory of the illicit use of cocculus indicus, tobacco, or other having been for many years permitted, it was not un poisonous substances has been made. reasonable to expect that when the duties on the two Malt.-Of this commodity, 394 samples were excommodities were equalised, the unscrupulous dealers in amined in the laboratory, irrespective of those examined coffee would seek to retain their illicit profits by resort- for cattle feeding purposes. The system of analysing ing to other substances than chicory, in order to impose malt, with a view to prevent frauds on the revenue, has on the public and defraud the revenue. It was at first now been nine years in existence, and in that period thought that chicory itself would become an object of nearly 3000 samples have been dealt with. The facilisophistication, and that the consumers of coffee would ties afforded to maltsters for obtaining a remission of be victims to an adulteration within an adulteration. duty on grain which vegetates so imperfectly as to This, however, does not, as yet, appear to be the case, render it unfit for the brewing of beer, have rendered it and there are good reasons for believing that coffee is necessary that samples of all such defective malt should now being extensively sold mixed with large pro- be examined, in order that it may be ascertained whether portions of burnt sugar or caramel, a substance of or not the allegations are true upon which the claims comparatively little value, but much better adapted for remission are founded. Again, large quantities of for the purpose than even chicory itself, and one malt are annually exported on drawback of duty, which enables the dealers to command a higher price samples of which are invariably subjected to examinafor coffee containing it than they could obtain for the tion, the object being to make sure that such malt is coffee alone, some of them selling the mixture at fairly merchantable, and entitled to drawback. 18. 10d., and even 28. per lb. Several prosecutions of The operations of malt roasters continue to be closely dealers who have sold coffee mixed with burnt sugar are watched, and in all cases where there are reasons to now depending, and the evil will, I fear, rapidly spread, suspect fraud, samples are submitted to careful scrutiny unless prompt and energetic measures be persisted in for in the laboratory. its suppression.
Wood Naphtha.—Efforts continue to be made by One sample of coffee purchased in London was found some ingenious persons to secure to themselves an imto be largely adulterated with mustard husks, a form of proper advantage through the permission to use duty adulteration which has but very rarely occurred. free spirits in arts and manufactures, and it is much to
Sixty-one samples of coffee were examined in my de- be regretted that this permission, which was prudentially partment during the year.
granted, and which has conferred an almost incalculable Beer. - The repeal of the duty on hops having benefit on the industrial pursuits of the country, should rendered the use of other bitter substances permissible still be an incitant to attempts to injure not only the in the brewing of beer, it is now only necessary to take interests of the revenue, but also those of the community. cognisance of those ingredients which may be used as Methods have from time to time been devised for the substitutes for malt.
purpose of rendering methylated spirit potable, but none Beer being a staple article of consumption in this of these have, I believe, as yet been of a nature to cause country, and one which can be easily tampered with, either any appreciably adverse effect on the revenue, whilst by dilution with water and the addition of saccharine those who adopted them would incur heavy penalties, matter, for the purpose of increasing bulk, by the use of and be much more liable to detection than the ordinary substances intended to impart an appearance of spiri- illicit distiller. taous strength which the beer does not really possess, or Connected with this subject, however, a source of by the use of noxious and poisonous drugs meant to danger to the revenue has arisen, which was not conmake the beer more intoxicating and stupefying, it is templated when the permission to use duty-free spirit not surprising that it should continue to be an object for was first allowed- a person having recently adopted a ministering to the cupidity of many of those whose process, the principles of which were published twenty business it is to supply it to the public. I have often years ago, by which he is enabled to purify, wood adverted to the great difficulty that exists in obtaining naphtha to a degree which assimilates it, in physical from the chemical analysis of adulterated beer proof of characters, somewhat closely to vinous alcohol ; and fraud sufficiently conclusive to secure a conviction in a although his product cannot, when alone, be deemed court of justice, a fact of which the fraudulent dealers quite potable, it is such that might be mixed in large in the commodity are, no doubt, aware, and are thereby proportions with ordinary spirits, and thus passed into encouraged to continue their illicit practices with im- consumption as a beverage without being detected. It punity. Thus the most usual mode of adulterating beer, may be observed that this purified wood naphtha would and one which there are good grounds for believing is be more likely to displace duty-paid spirits than methy: very generally practised by the publicans in London, is lated spirits, the cost of the latter being not one-third to add water to the beverage, the injury to the fullness of that of the naphtha, the preparation of which is or " body." of the article arising from this dilution being expensive, but it yet affords a large margin of profit as repaired by the introduction of sugar, treacle, or other against the value of duty-paid spirits, there being no saccharine matter-a description of fraud the commis- duty chargeable upon it, and no law to prevent its sion of which cannot, in the present state of chemical purification. knowledge, be satisfactorily proved by analysis.
Within the past year several attempts have been made Within the past year thirty-one samples of beer and to import from the Continent wood spirit containing materials used by brewers were examined, and of these large quantities of vinous alcohol, and there can be no twenty-three were found to be illicit. In thirteen doubt that the intending importers contemplated a fraud instances grains of paradise had been used, and in one on the spirit revenue of this country. Samples of these that drug in conjunction with coriander seeds; in four, mixtures were examined in the laboratory at the request coriander seeds alone; and in one, those seeds with a of the Customs, and I think it would be advisable to have large proportion of white mustard seeds; two samples all the wood spirit imported similarly tested. contained sweet flag (Calamus aromaticus); and another A few instances have been discovered of the sale of sulphate of iron. It will be observed that no detection, drinks under the names of Indianna brandee," " medi