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CHEMICAL NEWS,
January 10, 1879.
Alteration of Standard Ammonium Chloride Solution.

17 out taking certain precautions. The rough glass plate | seldom crystallised when uncovered. Having thus must have been recently washed, so as to saturate with saddled me with an opinion I have almost expressly repumoisture the absorbent substances which exist in the diated, Prof. Tomlinson proceeds to upset me by the depressions of the glass, and which are not rubbed off following evidence. He took two flasks of the sulphate ; when the surface is wiped dry. If these are allowed to pierced the bladder of one, and it crystallised; he removed dry thoroughly they start crystallisation in the depres- the cover of the other in the country, and it remained sions of the plate; the crystals grow sometimes very liquid during a long walk. This, as usual, supports my Tapidly, sometimes very slowly. In the latter case scratch. views. Removing the cover quietly is a very different proing with a sharp point brings the crystals into contact cess to piercing with a pin, and no crystals were shaken with the solution, which solidifies at once.

down. In the same way he shook a solution of alum This may account for a good many of Prof. Tomlinson's several times without shaking down any crystals, but negative results.

It also explains his statement that piercing with a pin was effectual. Alum is an adhesive drawing a sharp edge across the drops generally makes salt, and requires a jerk to be given. Again he pierced them crystallise. If the plate is in the right condition, the bladder of two flasks of the sulphate, and only one they do not do so. I have drawn sharp points across crystallised. On increasing the opening next day to the hundreds of drops of the strongest solutions in all kinds size of a pea, the other solution crystallised in a few of weather without causing crystallisation.

hours. Possibly an absorbent nucleus got in through the It is also necessary in the case of the alums or sodium enlarged opening, but it is more probable that the crystals acetate to clean the sharp point after every experiment round the opening effloresced and some fragment fell in. with boiling water or preferably a red heat. Cold water I have found the effloresced sulphate invariably active. and wiping will not generally clean a penknife for in. In air it never gets quite free from the normal salt. stance, owing to the great adhesiveness of the salt.

To sum up: the great majority of the experiments de. Next, with regard to rubbing with oil, which is really scribed in this paper confirm my theories. Prof. Tomlinthe crucial test for Prof. Tomlinson's theory, he seems to son arrived at negative results in other cases from not have been satisfied with rubbing the sulphate with oil on a knowing the precautions which have to be taken. glass plate; he very naturally found that it crystallised. The fact that paper, earth, and all kinds of substances I had extreme difficulty at first in getting this experiment can be introduced into the Aasks; that drops will remain to succeed, and I could not do so at all in my laboratory, liquid on all kinds of surfaces for hours ; even granting, where the dust possibly contains sodium sulphate. But which I do not, that it is only in wet weather, and the exI did succeed completely in another room.

perinients with oil are absolutely fatal to any theory However, if Prof. Tomlinson will wash his hands he based on preferential adhesion of the salt to a greasy surmay do what I have just done, i.e., rub a little castor oil on face. the palm of the hand, and then rub in drops of a 3 to i The immediate production of the modified seven atom solution of the sulphate without its crystallising. He carbonate by blotting-paper, the experiments with sponge may repeat this with sodium acetate of any strength. and earth, the effect of damp weather on aërial nuclei, Strong sodium carbonate will give a modified salt which and a multitude of similar results which I could give if is quite inadive in a 6 to i solution, and is, therefore, necessary, are incapable of explanation on any other neither the normal nor 7.atom salt. I have succeeded theory than that of the abstraction of water by absorbent with the alums also, but they are difficult to manage. bodies.

Secondly, as direct evidence against the absorption The old theory which made the air a store-house of all theory, Prof. Tomlinson gives the following experiments : kinds of crystals is dead and buried. I frequently have Three pieces of dried sponge were introduced into flasks half a dozen plates covered with drops of various soluof the sulphate, and were inactive. Of course they were, tions exposed to air in my laboratory for hours or days, being, saturated at once. Curiously enough, he actually and the drops evaporate quietly as modified salts, or redescribes the converse of this experiment, which is needed main liquid.' The minutest trace of a crystal makes them to maintain my theory. He found some years ago that crystallise at once. when sponge is drawn rapidly over the surface, the solution crystallises on the sponge, while that in the flask did not. The only inference he draws from this is that results are often contradictory.

UPON THE ALTERATION OF STANDARD He mentions one more fact as bearing on this point. A solution of the sulphate crystallised when poured on

AMMONIUM CHLORIDE SOLUTION the soil of his garden. This is the very same experiment

WHEN KEPT IN THE DARK. which first led me to work at the absorption theory. I

By ALBERT R. LEEDS, Ph.D. found, as described in Nature, that lumps of earth could be put freely into the flask; but I also found that every single drop put on the earth in the beds crystallised at In February, 1877, MM. Schlesing and Muntz communi. once.

cated to the French Academy (Comptes Rendus, Ixxxiv., Similarly with regard to the third point, the effect of 301), the results of elaborate experiments tending to prove sudden jars, Prof. Tomlinson gives experiments which that nitrification was due in certain cases to the action of simply confirm my results. He begins thus: “ There is an organised ferment. They further showed that nitrifica. one point upon which all observers down to the time of tion could be arrested in such cases by the vapour of Mr. Grenfell are agreed, namely, that is a supersaturated chloroform, and would not set up again until after the solution boiling in a flask be tied over with bladder and filtered sewage employed had been freshly " seeded” by left until cold, it will, if the bladder be pierced, immedi- the washings of a soil which was known to nitrisy. These ately become solid. Indeed, this has long been a com- observations were verified and extended by R. Warington mon lecture-room experiment. But Mr. Grenfell goes (Chem. News, xxxvi., 262, 1877), who showed that far beyond anything I or previous observers have done ; chloroform and carbon disulphide effectually prevent he exposes these solutions, &c.” He thus distinctly im nitrification in certain cases, while carbolic acid is pro. plies that I have denied the fact. Of course I have never bably effective to the extent in which it comes in contact denied it at all. my first paper in the Proc. Roy. Soc., with the soil. Moreover that the action of the nitrifying two years ago, I carefully explained that I had been body does not occur at all in the light, darkness being apdriven to abandon cotton wool, which was generally re. parently essential. In a note upon the ferment theory commended as a covering, because I felt convinced that in of nitrification, by Prof. F. H. Storer (Chem. News, removing it I shook down some crystals. I added that 'xxxvii., 268), he states that a solution of ammonium by using loose paper covers I found that the solutions very chloride, which had been prepared ten or twelve months

18

CHEMICAL NEWS, Working of Mild Steel.

January 10, 1879. previously, gave a strong reaction for nitrites. It had been taining water. The corks used in this and the other preserved in a half-filled glass-stoppered bottle, put away experiments were boiled in paraffin, and the joints luted in a dark cupboard. Similar solutions, seeded in various with the same. The escaping gas, after passing through ways, but left in a strong light for a number of months, the wash-bottle, was made to traverse a Geissler absorpgave no reaction whatever for nitrites or nitrates. The tion apparatus, containing a decinormal solution of following experiments confirm these results, so far as the potassium iodide. The action was allowed to go on for change of the ammonium solutions in the dark is con- a week at common temperatures, the permanganate being cerned, and give the rate at which it may expected to added in successive portions until the oxalic acid was comoccur under ordinary circumstances.

pletely decomposed. Nine litres of air were drawn through A standard solution of ammonium chloride had been ihe apparatus, after which the flask was gently warmed prepared October 15th, 1877, by dissolving 0.7867 grm. and 9 litres more of air drawn through it. No change NH,CI, purified by repeated sublimation, in a litre of re. whatever had taken place in the potassium iodide. The distilled water, free from ammonia. Another solution entire experiment was carefully repeated with identical was prepared by diluting 100 c.c. of this water to 1 litre, results. and used constantly during the months of O&tober and This unexpected conclusion threw suspicion on the November, 1877, in making the estimations which will be methods of ozone-generation, in which potassium permanfound recorded in an article entitled “Contributions from ganate is decomposed by an acid, and more particularly the Laboratory of the Stevens Institute of Technology."* that in which sulphuric acid is employed. For.this reason They were put aside in a dark closet, and remained there the same apparatus was used as in the above experiment, until this autumn, when a new standard ammonium but 25 gims. pulverised permanganate were introduced chloride solution was prepared from the fear that the old into the fask and sulphuric acid run in through the funnel solutions had altered. This proves to have been the case. a drop at a time. Much caution was used in conducting A careful determination, as ammonio-platinic chloride of the operation, but even then one flask was blown to the ammonia contained in 250 c.c. of the stronger solu-pieces, after the reaction had been going on for several tion, gave o'0575 grm. or o'00023 grm. in 1 c.c., instead hours. In each of three trials the potassium iodide reof oʻ00025, the amount which the solution originally con- mained unchanged, but chlorine was found in the wash. tained. Instead of being perfectly limpid, as it was when water. This led to an examination of the reagents emmade, the solution contained a number of white filaments, ployed, with the result of finding that the potassium looking like the vestiges of some vegetable growth. The permanganate contained 0'164 per cent of potassium more dilute solution presented the same appearances, but nitrate, and 7:47 per cent of other impurities, principally not to so marked a degree. 25 c.c. of the solution were potassium chlorate, but along with it some manganic used in the examination for nitrites, but their presence oxide, insoluble silicious residue, and a minute amount could not be shown in this large quantity of the liquid. of potassium chloride. A trace of chlorine was likewise 5 c.c. of the solution were evaporated three times to dry found in the oxalic acid. Analyses of other nominally ness in a platinum dish with o'i grm. of caustic soda, pre chemically pure preparations were made with similar pared from sodium,; and which had been found entirely results, the least impure containing 97.06 per cent potasfree from nitrogen compounds. It was then distilled with sium permanganate, with oʻ148 per cent chlorate, a trace 6 grms. pig-iron in a vessel entirely made of glass, the of chloride, some manganic oxide and sand. The perpig-iron having been previously repeatedly distilled with centage of manganese, in the potassium permanganate water, until it and the vessel had ceased to give any re- first spoken of, determined gravimetrically by precipitaaction for ammonia. The distillate contained 0.03 m.grm. tion as sulphide, solution in hydrochloric acid, re-precipitaHZN equivalent to oʻ11 m.grm.; HNO3, or 0.022 m.grm. ; tion as caibonate and estimation as proto-sesquioxide, was HNO3 per cubic centimetre.

31.50 per cent, instead of 34:66, the theoretical amount. The manganese percentage determined volumetrically by means of ammonio-ferrous sulphate was 32.78, showing

the influence of the admixture of chlorate upon the oxidaACTION OF POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE tion of the iron. UPON OXALIC ACID.

At this stage of the enquiry I found that the same

sources of error had previously been exposed by C. By ALBERT R. LEEDS, Ph.D.

Rammelsberg (Berichte der Deutsch. Chem. Gesell., vi.,

p. 604), who showed that the potassium permanganate, In a paper entitled “Ozone and the Atmosphere,”! I which he experimented upon, contained only 27'3 per cent stated that when the two solid substances, crystallised of manganese, the difference being due to 21:6 per cent oxalic acid and potassium permanganate in powder, were of potassium perchlorate. He also found that when the mixed together, they liberated ozone on addition of water. permanganate, free from chlorine, was used, no smell was Vacation intervening, the study of this and similar re- developed by the action of sulphuric acid, and the reactions was not resumed until five months later, in action upon iodo-starch was so weak that it evidently October of last year, when it was found that other arose from a trace of chlorine. organic acids yielded the same apparent results, more especially tartaric and acetic acids. The deportment of the inorganic acids varied : nitric acid, added to potassium

ON THE WORKING OF MILD STEEL. permanganate, liberated a gas plenteously, which affected the potassium iodide papers, but the gas evidently con.

By SERGIUS KERN, M.E., St. Petersburg. tained nitrous acid, and when passed through water had no effect upon the test papers. Hydrochloric acid gave many experiments prove that mild steel, before being negative results, but chromic acid produced with the permanganate an apparently copious evolution of ozone.

rolled into plates or bars, may be heated to a light weld. An attempt was then made to determine the amount of ing heat, without the least fear of the ingot crumbling ozone apparently given off. 20 grms. of pulverised oxalic into pieces, which often happens with burnt steel. Altoacid were introduced into a half-litre Aask, which was

gether many persons are rather afraid of this method of provided with a glass-funnei nd stopcock for the intro-working steel, and prefer to heat the ingots only to a white duction of a saturated solution of potassium permanga: given rise to a large percentage of bad products, especially

non-welding heat. This inferior mode of working has nate, and an exit tube connecting with a wash-bottle con

when plates are prepared, and plates with surface defects * Proceedings Amer. Chem. Soc., vol. ii.

are certainly rejected. For cheap boiler and ship plates # CHEMICAL News, xxxviii., p. 224.

Bessemer steel is at the present time in constant use, and

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CHEMICAL NEWS,

New Form of Wash-Bottle. January 10, 1879.

19 the chief difficulty in obtaining clean plates in this case this pressure, without continual blowing, until it are the numerous blow holes found in the outer parts of expends itself by expelling liquid from the jet. the ingots. The rolling of such ingots only masks these 2. The disagreeable reflux of steam into the mouth defects to a certain extent, as the small marks of their when washing with hot water, of ammonia or acid presence in the ingot may be always found in the finished fumes when using solutions of either of the latter, plate. Often slag, scale, and small pieces of sand or brick can be completely prevented. laying on the surface of the ingot while it is in the surnace 3. The flow of liquid from the tube A, when it is desired fall down into the blow-holes, and are rolled together to use the bottle in that way, can be so accurately with the ingot; such plates, with slag and brick particles regulated by pressing the caoutchouc tubing that it rolled into the metal, must be certainly condemned for is particularly valuable for diluting, filling measuring most purposes.

vessels, &c. In order to avoid these inconveniences the following

The jet I use, and which has been suggested by a means are in the hands of the operator :

friend, needs a word of explanation. It is bent, as shown, 1. The compressing of the liquid steel after casting in at F, and attached to the tube G, which dips into the liquid order to obtain sound ingots.

in the bottle, by a thick piece (thick enough to maintain 2. Hammering the ingots before the rolling of them. 3. Heating the ingots to a mild welding heat.

Compressing of the steel in liquid state must be effectual, but as the hydraulic press used for this purpose is very

A expensive, the ordinary prices of Bessemer steel, worked

H in such a manner, must be to a certain extent increased. Next the maintenance of the press, requiring a powerful engine and a couple of boilers, is also dear. The hammering of the ingo's before the rolling of them

E is cheap, and the work may be done in the Bessemer shop immediately after casting if a steam hammer may be placed in or near the casting house. The work requires a small amount of time, and the ingots, liberated from their moulds in 8 to 20 minutes after the casting of them, may be hammered, without placing them for this purpose into a furnace. After such an operation the surface blowholes are smoothened and have no action on the surface of plates ; this has been remarked during several trials.

The process of welding the steel is the cheapest way of doing away with the surface defe&ts. The metal superficially welds, and when rolled gives a plate with a clean surface. For this purpose gas furnaces or ordinary reheating furnaces with blast may be used. The ingot is covered with sand and remains in the furnace till the scale runs off. Next it is rolled as quickly as possible. This method is even cheaper than the ordinary way of heating the ingots in furnaces without blast to a white non-welding heat. Certainly great care must be taken not to overheat the jet in position) of caoutchouc tubing, H, by turning the ingots, and a clever man must look after the furnace. which round G, the jet can be direded upwards, down

The burning of the carbon out of the metal is trifling wards, or sideways, as desired. during the heating of the ingot (14 to 2 hours), as show the

This wash-bottle can be used in every respect like the following analyses of plates worked by this method :

ordinary wash-bottle, and as conveniently, besides having Per cent of Carbon.

the advantages described above. It has been used for Ingots. Plates.

the last nine or ten months by myself and others in

the laboratory at Crewe, and has given every satisfac. 0:24

tion. It is not at all liable to get out of order, and is 0'24 0:19

but slightly more difficult to make than the ordinary form 0:25

of bottle. Such plates have a beautiful shining surface, perfeAly

8, Martha Terrace, Henry Street, Crewe. clean, and give a higher percentage of elongation.

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A NEW FORM OF WASH-BOTTLE.

REACTIONS OF

IODINE AND OF POTASSIUM IODIDE By M. H. FOYE.

WITH SULPHUROUS ACID. In this wash-bottle the blow-tube consists of three parts

By ALBERT E. MENKE. -A, D, E (see sketch). A and e are pieces of glass tube. A passes through the stopper obliquely, outside the bottle Johnson, in his investigation of potassium tri-iodide, is bent at b, and terminates at c. E is bent as shown, and noticed that on mixing strong solutions of potassiuni passes through the stopper to the interior of the bottle. iodide and sulphurous acid, a yellow colour was produced, Dis a piece of caoutchouc tubing which stretches across which was not bleached by more sulphurous acid, but the top of the stopper and conneas a and e. Now it will disappeared on adding water. Gmelin (“ Handbook of be seen that by the aâion of the forefinger upon D, the Chemistry,” Watts, ii., 263) states, on the authority of blow-tube can be closed and opened at pleasure. The ! Saladin (Fourn. Chim. Med., vii., 528), that hydriodic and advantages of this arrangement are the following :- sulphurous acids in aqueous solution form a yellow liquid, 1. That after you create a pressure on the liquid in the brighter in proportion to the concentration, and from

bottle by Flowing through the blow.tube, you can, which, eventually, sulphur is separated. Having myself by compressing the caoutchouc tubing, maintain | verified this statement, I inferred that the yellow colour

20
Reactions of Iodine, &c., with Sulphurous Acid.

Acid. {

January, 10, 1879. given by potassium iodide with sulphurous acid was due tant processes as the manufactures of alkali and of bleachto the action of the latter upon the hydriodic acid set ing powder, are also described, if not so as to enter into free, and I was anxious to isolate the substance causing every nicety, still in a manner which has in it no trace of the colour. That it could not be iodine was shown by its the careless and the perfunctory. In these important resisting the action of excess of sulphurous acid, and by respects the work is advantageously distinguished even its not colouring carbon disulphide. When the yellow as compared with such valuable treatises as those of solution was shaken with ether, the latter was very slightly Gmelin and Watt. Let any one, for instance, read the coloured, but on adding a little alcohol and again shaking brief section on artificial soda in Gmelin (vol. iii., p. 79), the ethereal layer acquired a bright yellow colour, and and he will know how to appreciate the difference. Even when drawn off and evaporated it left a brown oily sub- some professedly technological works give less thorough stance, having a pungent odour somewhat resembling descriptions of ihe various stages of the alkali manufacthat of bromine. On heating, moderately it evolved ture than does the work before us. This feature is, we vapour of iodine. I made several attempts to obtain it in hold, of extreme value. Before the scientific chemist can a state fit for analysis, but the yield was always small, bring his theoretical knowledge to bear usefully upon any and there was a tendency to the separation of plates of of the industrial arts he should have an accurate general iodine. I therefore tried to obtain it by the action of knowledge of their nature ; of the various portions of the sulphurous acid gas upon iodine dissolved in ordinary alco plant and of their functions, and of the difficulties which hol, hoping that, the quantity of water present being very have been, or which still have to be overcome. Now, small, a larger quantity of the yellow substance would be without wishing to convey the impression that mere read. produced. One ounce of iodine was dissolved in 20 c.c. ing can at once put the student in possession of practical of alcohol, and sulphurous acid was passed in !o com- knowledge, we hold that a young man fresh from college plete saturation ; the liquid remained of a dark brown and entering upon the position of a “work's chemist," colour, which disappeared immediately on adding excess

will find himself much sooner at home and do himself of water. As it did not deposit anything after some days, more credit if the work of Profs. Roscoe and Schorlemmer and was found to contain a little free iodine, small quan has been his guide than it he has merely been accustomed tities of water were added, and more sulphurous acid gas to manuals which scarcely condescend to refer to manuwas passed in until no more free iodine could be detected, facturing operations. We believe that “theory with although the liquid had still a dark brown colour. On practice" is the key-word to industrial success, and in standing it deposited a plastic substance resembling the ihat conviction we congratulate the authors on their unamorphous form of sulphur. This was freed by pressure dertaking. from adhering mother-liquor, when it weighed oʻ140 grm. On oxidising it with tuming nitric acid and precipitating Coal, its History and Uses. By Professors Green, with barium chloride it gave barium sulphate corresponding to 60 per cent of sulphur. Though disappointed in

MIALL, THORPE, Rucker, and MARSHALL, of the isolating the substance, I submit that my experimenis

Yorkshire College. Edited by Prof. Thorpe. London: justify the conclusion that the yellow body formed when

Macmillan and Co. 1878. sulphurous acid acts upon concentrated solutions of potas- TOWARDS the close of the year 1877 it was suggested to siuin and sodium iodide is an unstable iodide of sulphur, the Professors of the Yorkshire College that by delivering and I would suggest the following equations explaining a series of leAures in some of the larger towns of the the reaction:

West Riding they might aid in the good work which is (1.) KI+H2SO3=HI+KHSO3.

being done by Dr. Gilchrist's educational bequest. Each (2.) 8HI +2502=4H20+16+12S2 (?)

lecturer was fain to choose his own topic, the whole of (3.) 12+2H20+S02=2HI+H2S04:

them agreeing that, considering the locality in which they

were to leâure, they could not select a better general Chemical Laboratory, King's College, London.

subject than coal. Early in 1878, therefore, a series of ten lectures was delivered in Leeds and Keighley in the fol.

lowing order :-Lectures I. and II., on the Geology of NOTICES OF BOOKS.

Coal, by Prof. Green ; III. and IV., on Coal Plants and
Animals, by Prof. Miall; V. and VI., on the Chemistry of
Coal, by Prof. Thorpe; VII. and VIII., on Coal as a

Source of Warmth and Power, by Prof. Rücker; and IX. A Treatise on Chemistry. By H. E. Roscoe, F.R.S., and and X., by Prof. Marshall, on the Coal Question. The

C. SCHORLEMMER, F.R.S. Vol. II. Metals. Part I. present volume consists of these ten lectures altered in London: Macmillan and Co.

form, revised and arranged consecutively in ten chapters. This is one of those books most valuable to the student, The only ones affecting our readers are those of Prof. but the despair of the reviewer. We have no novel and Thorpe, who has managed to introduce a certain amount questionable theories to criticise, no new facts of capital of fresh detail into this most hackneyed subject by giving importance to point out. On the other hand, it will not a popular account of Mr. J. W. Thomas's researches on be expected that the work of two chemists of such emi. the gases occluded in coal. He also gives an interesting nence can be rich in errors. We might, indeed, on careful description of the successive steps in the invention of the examination come upon statements which we should Davy lamp, illustrated by diagrams. Mr. Ansell's firehesitate to endorse. We may here and there think that damp alarm is also sully described and illustrated. The some piece of information which has been omitted ought ledures are illustrated with nearly sixty well-executed to have been given, and it would certainly be no diffi. cuts. A full index is appended. cult matter to select from the pages before us interesting faas not to be met with in those chemical hand-books, Year-Book of Pharmacy. Comprising Abstracts of Papers manuals, and treatises which have lately become somewhat too numerous. The book has, indeed, a distinctive

relating to Pharmacy, Materia Medica, and Chemistry, character. Its illustrations, in their number, excellence,

contributed to British and Foreign Journals from July and accuracy, have few rivals. They are, further, not

I, 1877, to June 30, 1878, with the Transactions of the restricted to sketches of the apparatus used in the scien

British Pharmaceutical Conserence at the 15th Annual tific laboratory or at the lecture-table, but include careful

Meeting. London: J. and A. Churchill, 1878. representations of the furnaces and other plant as now The ninth volume of the “ Year-Book of Pharmacy,” as actually used in the best-arranged chemical manufactories usual, has appeared somewhat late. The book contains and metallurgical establishments, with the additional abstracts of papers relating to pharmacy contributed to recommendation of being drawn to scale. Such impor. | British and foreign journals for the year ending June 30,

CHEMICAL News,
January 10, 1879.

}

Chemical Notices from Foreign Sources.

21

1878, and the Proceedings of the British Pharmaceutical i miligramme, and from 1 grain to 1000 grains. The therConference which held their sittings in the middle of mometrical tables range from 265° C., 208° R., and 500°F., August. According to the statement which Prof. Att down to – 10° C., – ro R., and +14 F. The barometrical field made at the meeting held on August 12th, the MS. tables range from 27 inches to 30'98 inches. Boiling of the book was to have been laid upon the table on the points, specific gravities, vapour densities, and solubilities following day; we cannot, therefore, understand why so follow. The tables showing the specific gravities of solulong a period as three months and a half should be al- tions of salts, &:., of different strengths, are particularly lowed to elapse before the appearance of the book, even copious, but we cannot understand why it is that the supposing that the Transactions of the Conference were temperature at which the specific gravities have been not included in the MS. mentioned by Prof. Attfield. The taken differ in every instance. The analytical tables are first part of the work is, as usual, particularly copious and also very full. The pages on chemical manipulation complete, and gives us all the information contained in might, we think, have been omitted. The glossary of the principal pharmaceutical and medical journals issued | minerals, giving their names, formula, hardness, specific in England and America during the period referred to in i gravity, and crystalline system, will render Mr. Bayley's a condensed form.

little book indispensable to the mineralogist. We have The second part of the work, containing the Proceedings throughout tested Mr. Bayley's vade mecum for tables of of the Conference, shows that the working members of every sort and kind, and have every one down even to a that body have applied the wholesome lesson read to them ready-reckoner and wages table. The 421 pages which by Prof. Attfield at the 1877 meeting, and we are glad to the book contains literally team with information, and see that every paper, without exception, is of a thoroughly · we think it will puzzle Mr. Bailey to add very much to his practical character from the pharmacist's point of view. second edition, which cannot fail to appear very speedily. The place of honour is occupied by the paper of Dr. The type in which the tables are printed is clear, though Alder' Wright 'and Mr. A. P. Luff, on the aconite necessarily small in cases where much matter is crowded alkaloids. Those improved processes for purifying together, and there appear to be but few misprints. the aconite bases have led to unexpected results. Thus, the substance described by them last year under the name of pseudaconitine is not a definite base, but a mixture of pseudaconitine and apopseudaconi- CHEMICAL NOTICES FROM FOREIGN tine, the latter being a dehydrated derivative of the

SOURCES. former. The substance again which was last year regarded as pseudaconine is now distinguished as apopseudaconine, and is a dehydrated derivative of true pseudaconine. Note.-All degrees of temperature are Centigrade, unless otherwis True aconitine also forms a similar series of dehydrated

expressed. derivatives. The veratrum alkaloids seem likely to afford a similar series of bases. The alkaloid or alkaloids ob- Comptes Rendus Hebdomadaires des Séances, l'Académie de tained from aconitum ferox are still a puzzle. In any case

des Sciences. No. 24, December 9, 1878. they appear to differ both from aconitine and pseudaconitine. The outcome of all these apparently recondite re

Artificial Pyroxene (Diopside).-L. Gruner.-Crystals searches is of the highest possible practical importance, of this mineral have been obtained from bricks very rich Hitherto the pharmacist has been unable to present the in lime and magnesia, after being exposed for some time physician with any preparation of either British or foreign to an intense heat ir. a furnace. aconite root which had a constant composition, but now, Influence of Atmospheric Ele&ricity upon the as the result of the investigations of Dr. Wright and his Fructification of Plants.-L. Grandeau.-Atmospheric colleagues, the active principle of the drug will be procur. electricity in two sets of experiments conducted at Nancy able in a form whose composition will be nearly as definite and at Mettray decidedly promotes fructification. as that of potassium nitrate. Mr. Shenstone's researches

Disease of the Coffee-tree Observed in Brazil. on the action of nitric acid on strychnine seem to dis- c. Jobert.—This affection, the symptoms of which are prove Prof. Sonnenschein's alleged discovery of the for- minutely described, attacks chiefly plantations in moist mation of brucine by this method, and would also lead us

and shady situations, and appears to be caused by to suppose that pure brucine has not yet been procured. Anguillula which attack the roots. Most of the other papers are of too technical a nature for

Diffusion of Heat by Leaves.-M. Maquenne.-The notice in our pages.

green organs of plants diffuse a considerable proportion of

the heat-rays which they receive, this action being almost A Pocket-book for Chemists, Chemical Manufacturers, always accompanied by imperfect reflection, the reflected

Metallurgists, Dyers, Distillers, &c. By Thomas rays being polarised in the plane of incidence. The proBAYLEY, Assoc. R.C.Sc.I., Demonstrator of Practical portion of rays diffused in the case of normal incidence Chemistry, &c., in the Mining School, Bristol. diminishes with the temperature of the source of heat. London : Spon and Co. 1878.

The Power of Kinds of Wood in Absorbing Water. A HANDY little book that has long been wanted, and of -E. J. Maumené.-The author finds the proportion of whose usefulness it would be needless to say anything. water absorbed by different sorts of wood varies from Hitherto chemists have been obliged to fall back on the 9'37 to 174:86 per cent. very incomplete little note-book of Gutch or the French Addenda of Dunod, and it seems surprising that the want

No. 25, December 16, 1878. has never been supplied. The tables, of course, begin

Observations on M. Pasteur's Paper on Alcoholic with a list of the elements, their symbols, atomicities. Fermentation.-M. Berthelot.-The author, feeling and atomic weights; but why, we may ask, are the latter himself reflected upon by M. Pasteur's remarks on the repeated twice ? once according to the latest determina posthumous essays of Claude Bernard, has undertaken a tions, and again according to some obsolete table. The novel and interesting experiment. He writes, " when space thus wasted might have been devoted to the date speaking of a soluble alcoholic ferment capable of being of the discovery of the newer elements and the names of consumed step by step with its production and in the very their discoverers. Various other tables, data, and formulæ chemical act which it determines, I took care to add thai, follow, one of the most useful being a table of coefficients for the demonstration of this hypothesis, it would be giving the amount of the constituent sought by simple necessary to discover the conditions in which this ferment multiplication. "Another is a table for the conversion of is produced in more considerable proportions than the grammes into grains and vice versa, from 1000 grammes to ' quantity destroyed in fermentation. Such were the con.

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