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Notes on Vanadium Compounds.

to a small minority, in opposition to the wishes of the great bulk of those present. Strictly speaking, these restrictive Bye-laws never had any legal existence, and they should at once be replaced by others in conformity with the Charter.

"One half of the problem now under discussion-that of preventing voting by ballot becoming an organ for the gratification of personal pique-has solved itself in a manner which leaves nothing to be desired. The first part of the question-How to guard against the admission of unfit persons into the Society-is one in which Council and Fellows are free to act, for the Charter specially provides that they may alter, vary, or revoke, and may make such new and other Bye-laws as they shall think most useful and expedient for the said body politic and corporate, so that the same be not repugnant to these presents.' Thus the way is clear to a satisfactory settlement of the recent unwarrantable proceedings and the permanent prevention of their recurrence, and to the establishment of safeguards against the degradation of the Fellowship of the Chemical Society."

CHEMICAL NEWS, July 7, 1876.

with some of the water in a dry atmosphere of low temperature, I expect to clear up this point by a further investigation.

1 (b). Va204,3SO3,15H2O. Soluble Modification. This form of the sulphate is obtained by evaporating a solution of the crystals above described to the consistence of a syrup, and mixing the residue with strong alcohol, and in the same manner from the evaporated solution from which the crystals are separated. If the concentration is not carried far enough, the alcohol takes up a considerable quantity of the salt, and thus causes a loss; the separation of solid salt must, however, be avoided. The alcohol removes the excess of sulphuric acid, and but little of the vanadic sulphate. After repeated washings and thorough kneading, the alcohol dissolves no more of the salt, but still takes up traces of sulphuric acid. The sulphate now appears as a transparent blue mass, of wax-like consistence. It was left for some time over sulphuric acid without undergoing any change, and in this state submitted to analysis.

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I (a). Va204,3SO3,4H2O. Insoluble Modification. VANADIC Sulphate is readily obtained in solution by the action of dilute sulphuric acid upon vanadic pentoxide in the presence of reducing agents such as alcohol, sulphurous acid, hydrochloric acid, oxalic acid, &c. The blue solution thus produced is evaporated to the consistence of a syrup and mixed with strong sulphuric acid, whereby a voluminous precipitate is at once formed. After cooling, the excess of acid is removed, the residue treated with water, care being taken to avoid rise of temperature; it is then thrown on a filter and washed with cold water, or, what is preferable, with alcohol, and dried over sulphuric acid in vacuum. The salt is of a pale blue colour, and consists of microscopic needles, which are slowly soluble in cold, and rapidly in hot water. Exposed to the atmosphere, they absorb moisture and form a thick blue liquor. After being dried in this manner for two days, the compound was submitted to analysis. At 100° it lost water, and continued to do so for upwards of twenty-four hours. The dried sample was dissolved in water, a little hydrochloric acid added, and the sulphuric acid precipitated as barium sulphate. This precipitate passes through the filter even after long-continued digestion in the waterbath, but this difficulty can be overcome by moistening the paper with ammonium chloride solution. The excess of barium was removed from the filtrate by sulphuric acid, and the clear solution finally titrated with permanganate for the estimation of the vanadic tetroxide. Calculated for

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In the residue (difference) 14.98

40'34 39'91

24.78 24.62 34.88 35'47

100'00 100'00

By drying and long exposure to a temperature of 125°, this compound is not converted into the former one, the insoluble modification; the salt retains over 5 mols. of H2O, and is still readily soluble in cold water and in dilute alcohol. The original compound, as it is separated by alcohol, rapidly absorbs moisture from the atmosphere.

The aqueous solutions of both modifications are identical in every respect. I have not succeeded in obtaining crystals from them, either by evaporation at low temperature or after the addition of sulphuric acid, nor by covering them with a layer of absolute alcohol.

The solution of the sulphate becomes dark green by the addition of ammonium vanadate, but remains clear in the cold; boiling produces dark green, almost black crusts, adhering firmly to the sides of the vessel, and reflecting the light strongly, whilst the liquor becomes lighter. Na2HPO4 produces with the solution of the vanadium salt a bulky greyish blue precipitate, which is readily soluble in an excess of the phosphate, and also in acetic acid; K2CrO4 forms a yellowish brown precipitate.

The mixed solutions of equal molecules of vanadium sulphate and potassium sulphate dry over sulphuric acid to a clear blue syrup, from which, after many days, a light blue powder separates. This is but slowly soluble in cold water, still less so in dilute alcohol, but hot water dissolves it readily. From this solution the new compound separates upon evaporation without any sign of crystalline structure; it is of very pale blue colour, and not hygroscopic, Two samples separately prepared and dried over sulphuric acid yielded the following results on analysis:



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23.18 1.63

H2O(loss at 100°) H2O (difference)

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CHEMICAL NEWS, July 7, 1876.

Notes on Vanadium Compounds.

vanadium sulphate, and the mother-liquor from which the double salt separated, will contain acid potassium sulphate. The formula of the compound will probably be K2(Va2O2)3SO4,xH2O.

The blue crystals, or the soluble modification, dried at 125°, placed in a thin test-tube and submerged in a bath of boiling vitriol or molten lead (330°), slowly lose water containing a little sulphuric acid, but the decomposition is so gradual that even after many hours the salts are still completely soluble. If, however, these salts, or the solutions from which they are prepared, are boiled with sulphuric acid for a short time they are completely converted into a heavy sandy powder of greyish green colour, the composition of which is represented by the formula Va2042SO3, whereas the supernatant sulphuric acid is almost free from vanadium.


2 (a). Va204,2SO3. Insoluble Modification. Prepared in the manner described, this consists microscopic crystals, which are perfectly insoluble in cold water, even after a digestion of several months, and after long-continued boiling the water only shows a pale blue colour. This action of boiling water is very slightly increased by hydrochloric or sulphuric acid. Heated with a little water in a closed tube to 150° or 200°, complete solution takes place in a period varying from twelve to forty-eight hours, and sometimes more; but with more water a slight green sediment is formed under the same conditions. Dilute alkaline solutions decompose the compound with the formation of brown hydroxide, which is readily dissolved by acids.

The following analyses were made with samples prepared at different times. Nos. I and 2 were dried over sulphuric acid, No. 3 at 100°. In No. I the sulphate was dissolved by treatment with a dilute solution of soda, and subsequently with hydrochloric acid; the sulphuric acid was then separated with barium chloride, and the analysis carried out as described in 1 (a). In Nos. 2 and 3 the weighed sulphate was converted into the pentoxide by ignition, and the amount of tetroxide calculated from its weight.

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2 (b). Va204,2SO3,*2O. Soluble Modification. The insoluble sulphate, as already mentioned, is converted into a deep blue, thick, oily liquid, when heated with a small amount of water to 150° for some time. This mixes with water and alcohol, and may be boiled with either without suffering any change. The aqueous solution leaves a transparent, blue, gummy mass after evaporation over sulphuric acid, which in the course of a few weeks becomes quite hard, and is devoid of all crystalline appearance; but when moistened with alcohol and left under a loose cover it gradually assumes a crystalline texture throughout. Its solution in alcohol yields, on evaporation at low temperature, beautiful blue, well-defined crystals. I could only obtain the crystalline form from the gummy mass alluded to by the method described, and the precise manner of its formation remains as yet unexplained. I am endeavouring to prepare crystals for a crystallographical examination.

The analysis of blue crystals gave the following results:

The formula Va,O,2SO,10H2O



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The solution of this sulphate gives, with ammonium vanadate, sodium phosphate and potassium chromate, the same reactions as the acid sulphate above described. It is not altered by sulphuretted hydrogen, but, after addition of sodium acetate and dilution with water, the gas precipitates a chocolate-coloured sulphide: it requires, however, days and weeks to complete the separation of the vanadium from the liquor.

As is already known, the vanadium sulphates are decomposed by heat into sulphurous and sulphuric acid and vanadic pentoxide, the latter of which fuses at a still higher temperature. Heated with acid potassium sulphate the vanadium sulphates fuse without decomposition; it is only at a bright red heat that they are converted into the pentoxide.

The behaviour of the first of these vanadium sulphates marks it out as an acid salt, whereas the second one bears

the character of a neutral sulphate, and their symbolic representation seems best attained by the assumption of a quadrivalent radical, "Vanadyl," Va2O2, which leads to the following formulæ :

1 (a.) H2(Va2O2),3SO4.3H2O. Insoluble modification.Hydric vanadylic sulphate.

1 (b.) H2(Va2O2),3SO4,14H2O. Soluble modification.Hydric vanadylic sulphate.

2 (a.)

K2(Va2O2), 3SO4,xH2O.

Potassic vanadylic sulphate.


Insoluble modification.-Neutral vanadylic sulphate.

2 (b.) (Va2O2),2SO4,10H2O. Soluble modification.Crystallised vanadylic sulphate.

Berzelius described as acid sulphate of vanadium the compound (Va2O2)2SO4,4H2O. I have not succeeded in obtaining these crystals.

I am continuing the investigation of vanadium compounds, and hope for results which will elucidate their



I obtained this beautiful compound some years ago by treating with sulphurous acid the yellow crystals which formed by boiling the solution of the mineral copper vanadate in sulphurous acid (Journ. f. Prakt. Chem., 1871, vol. iv., p. 40), after their partial oxidation by exposure to air (1).-(Proc. Manchester Lit. and Phil. Soc., 1873, p. 50). Since then I have succeeded in preparing it by simpler methods. A cold saturated solution of copper sulphate is mixed with a strong solution of ammonium chloride in large excess. Ammonium vanadate in saturated solution is then added until a permanent precipitate appears, and the mixture slowly heated to 75°, when the formation of gold-like scales commences: this continues for some hours, until nearly all vanadium has separated as metavanadic acid, and only a trace is left in solution. The precipitate is collected on a filter, treated with dilute sulphuric and sulphurous acid (to remove small quantities of copper vanadate and red amorphous vanadic acid, which deteriorate the colour), washed with water, and dried (2.)

The compound is now free from copper, but retains a small amount of ammonia in spite of repeated treatment with acids; the sample (2) when submitted to analysis contained sufficient ammonia to make it perceptible by smell on heating. This circumstance accounts for the loss by heat in the analysis being greater than the calculated amount of water. Prepared in this manner the meta-vanadic acid possesses the most brilliant colour and lustre. The bronze separates in much smaller scales of inferior colour and appearance, when dilute solutions, and particularly copper nitrate instead of the sulphate, are rapidly heated to the boiling-point. The meta-vanadic acid thus prepared more effectually resists reducing agents, as well as the solvent action of alkalies, so that boiling with ammonia or with sodium carbonate has no perceptible action. The purification is effected as above, with dilute sulphuric and sulphurous acid (3.) Meta-vanadic acid may also be obtained by adding a solution of ammo


Action of Certain Kinds of Filters on Organic Substances.

nium vanadate or acid sodium vanadate (the red salt) to the solution of a copper salt, separating the precipitate (which consists of copper ortho-vanadate, Cu3Va2O8, with small excess of vanadic acid) and heating the deep yellowish brown solution, which has a strongly acid reaction to 75°. The colour becomes gradually fainter as the separation of the bronze proceeds. The filtrate from the copper vanadate contains, even if vanadiate has been used in excess, a small amount of copper, which separates with the scales, but is easily extracted with dilute acids (4). Copper salts can be replaced by zinc salts, and probably by salts of any heavy metal which forms a sparingly soluble ortho-vanadate, and is not precipitated by ammonia in the presence of ammonium salts. Ortho-vanadates of copper and zinc are partially converted by long-continued boiling with ammonium chloride into meta-vanadic acid.

The materials for the analyses were weighed after drying in the water-bath, then heated to redness; the loss calculated as water, and the residue as vanadic pentoxide. The residue of No. 1, which was prepared from impure materials, was fluxed with sodium carbonate, dissolved in water, and a small quantity of insoluble matter, consisting of lime and ferric oxide separated; the filtrate was acidulated with acetic acid, and lead acetate added; the precipitated lead vanadate was washed with water, and decomposed with sulphuric acid and alcohol: upon evaporating the solution of vanadic acid and igniting the residue, the vanadium pentoxide was left in a pure state.

July 7, 1876.

will be found to be ozone, which may be proved by the
known test of a strip of paper saturated with iodide of
When the moistened paper is put on the top of the tube
without touching the water in the tube, the paper turns

If a flower with its stem and leaves is put into the
tube, the decomposition of the peroxide will be caused by
the entire plant, but in the same way as the absorption of
the plants, when in a growing state, is most active at the
sponges or hairs which terminate the roots, so decompo-
sition of the HO2 mostly takes place at the end of the
stem where it is cut through, also at the leaves.
The presence of the ozone may also be proved by its
density. If the tube is shaken a little, the active or ozon-
ised oxygen rises more freely from the bottom of the
tube, because the ozone is more dense than ordinary
oxygen. The decomposition goes on gradually, and if a
bunch of flowers, instead of being put into a glass filled
with water only, is put into a glass filled with a weak
solution of HO2, the room may be filled with czone in a
more simple and easy manner than by any other known
If a strong solution of HO2 be used, the active oxygen
evolves itself tumultuously, and if an electrophore is
placed near it, a slight deflection takes place, proving that
there is chemical reaction going on, but the flowers then
very soon fade.

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Meta-vanadic acid is a highly hygroscopic substance. It suffers no change at 150°; at higher temperatures it loses water and leaves vanadic pentoxide, which fuses at a still higher temperature.

I am still engaged with the study of the formation of this remarkable form of vanadic acid, which resists chemical reagents to a surprising extent; meanwhile I communicate some experiences that may be of interest.

The filtrate from the copper vanadate (4) yields, on heating, less of the meta-acid the longer it has been kept, so that after eight or ten days it remains clear on boiling.) This change is not indicated by any visible alteration.

The original liquor evaporated in a thin layer at low temperature leaves a crystalline residue: this forms a clear solution with cold water, which, heated to 75°, deposits meta-vanadic acid in scales.

The same liquor parted, on the dialyser, with all the salts within five days, whilst but little of the vanadic acid penetrated the parchment paper. The vanadic acid was left in a new soluble modification; its solution yielded no scales on boiling, but remained clear, and deposited red amorphous vanadic acid after considerable evaporation.

The meta-vanadic acid possesses properties which recommend it as a substitute for gold-bronze. With care it can easily be obtained of beautiful colour and lustre, almost equal to gold, and as a very fine powder, mixing readily with gum or oil. It is in no way affected by the atmosphere or by moisture.

Macclesfield, May, 1876.


Ir a fresh stem of a plant is put into a test-tube filled
with a weak solution of peroxide of hydrogen, the latter
decomposes, and almost immediately the oxygen bubbles
are seen rising to the surface, and a portion of the oxygen



IN continuing my investigation into the action of the silicated carbon filter, I have proceeded to experiment on solutions containing a by no means infinitesimal quantity of organic substance, and, as will be apparent from the following details, have obtained a very striking result.

In these experiments I employed a rather larger filter than before, viz., a filter containing a cake of silicated carbon 6 inches in thickness, and the filter was quite new.

Experiment I.-Into a quantity of boiled London water (which yielded o'00 milligramme of free ammonia and 0'04 milligramme of albuminoid ammonia per litre) I placed a weighed quantity of acid sulphate of quinine. In this manner a large volume of dilute solution of acid sulphate of quinine of such a strength that one litre contained 142 milligrammes of the acid sulphate was prepared. Before making the experiment with the filter I subjected some of this dilute solution of quinine to the ammonia process, and obtained from 1 litre

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CHEMICAL NEWS, July 7, 1876.

Development of the Chemical Arts.


filter, and the result may be accepted with confidence that | surface, greater power of resisting hydrochloric acid, and a solution of quinine, which yielded o°48 m.grm. of albuminoid ammonia per litre, was so purified by a single filtration through 6 inches of "silicated carbon" that after filtration it yielded only o'04 or o'02 m.grm. of albuminoid ammonia per litre.

Encouraged by this result I prepared a much stronger solution of quinine, viz., a solution containing 118 m.grms. of acid sulphate of quinine per litre. The acid sulphate of quinine which I employed was in large crystals, and had been previously investigated and found to contain 211 per cent of water of crystallisation. As the reader will observe the above-mentioned solution contained 8.26 grs. of the salt to the gallon of water, and such a solution is quite bitter to the taste.

Experiment II.-The above described solution of quinine (118 m.grms. of acid sulphate of quinine in a litre of water) was passed through the filter, and after rejecting the first litre of filtrate, examinations of the further filtrate were commenced. The filtrate yielded

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This result was further confirmed by evaporating a quantity of the filtrate down to dryness and weighing and igniting the residue. As will readily be understood, a solution containing as much as 81 grs. of sulphate of quinine per gallon is strong enough to be dealt with by simple means, and accordingly I experimented in that manner with the solution before and after filtration, and got perfectly satisfactory results. Finally, I tasted the filtrate and found that all bitterness had gone away.

Thus I have arrived at the startling result that by a simple filtration through 6 inches of silicated carbon a solution of quinine, containing 8 grs. of the acid sulphate per gallon of water, is totally deprived of quinine. I am extending the investigation to non-nitrogenous organic substances, and have operated upon a 10 grain to the gallon solution of cane sugar. Action there seems to be; but, so far as I am able to judge at present, it is neither so rapid nor so complete as in the instance of quinine and nitrogenous substances generally.



(Continued from p. 253.)

Chlorine, Bromine, Iodine, and Fluorine.

By Dr. E. MYLIUS, of Ludwigshafen. WHERE two muffle furnaces are in use with a total weekly yield of 8000 kilos. of salt-cake on the system of condensation just mentioned, 15 metres in height and 2.3 metres in the square (interior measurement) suffice for the production of a strong acid. At any rate the condensation is so perfect that in the second, or "washing tower," which may measure something less in the clear, the acid obtained does not exceed the strength of 1° B., which may be let pass away in each channel, if it is not preferred to let it pass down in the second or condensation tower. The acid from the first tower may be further strengthened in the first trough-in which most of the accompanying sulphuric acid is condensed-with a view to its utilisation in the manufacture of chloride of lime.

Particular attention must be paid to the towers when fitted up. They are filled either with bricks or coke, the latter material being preferable on account of its larger

"Berichte über die Entwickelung der Chemischen Industrie Während des Letzten Jahrzenends."

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its less weight. Sometimes a combination of both materials is made, the bricks being placed below and the coke above. In order to distribute the water equally among the contents of the tower we employ either a rocking trough or Segner's water-wheel. The coke must be filled in neither too compact nor too loosely; the former error impeding the movement of the gases, and the latter leading to the subsequent settlement of particular portions. In both these cases the gas selects the more open passages, and a large part of the tower may be thrown out of action. The towers may also deviate from the perpendicular, when the water runs down one side alone, leaving the other nearly dry, and as these parts allow the freest passage to the gases the actual absorption becomes very small.

A very convenient arrangement for condensation is the combination of coke towers and Woolff's bottles, introduced at Stolberg and elsewhere. The gases escaping from the salt-cake pans and muffle furnaces, considerably cooled in passing through a long series of earthenware pipes, are led into a long row of Woolff's, tubulated on both sides at a fourth of their height reckoning from the bottom and connected by caoutchouc tubes well secured with cement; thus the liquid in all stands at the same level. From these the gases enter the coke towers, whence the condensed acid flows back into the Woolft's bottles to be there strengthened by the muriatic acid gas continually streaming over it, and thus reaches the required strength (Hasenclever).

In England the condensation of the hydrochloric acid is carried so far that whilst in the first year of the operation of the Alkali Act, 1.28 per cent escaped, in the second the loss was reduced to 0.88 per cent, in the third to 0.73, and in many works as far as can be ascertained the condensation is perfect. (To be continued)


Discursive Chemical Notes in Rhyme. By the author of theChemical Review," A. B. Part I. The NonMetallics. London: Van Voorst.

THE example of Sir Humphry Davy notwithstanding, chemists are not generally credited with poetical tendencies. The philosopher of Penzance, too, when courting the Muses found his subjects outside the laboratory; but the author of the little work before us, with greater daring, gives us in verse the chemistry of the non-metallic elements, and despite the refractory and unpromising nature of the subject the result is very far from a failure. Whether, if he continues his task, he may some day succeed in weaving the neo-chemical nomenthe future can alone decide. But this poem is not merely clature of organic compounds into easily flowing verse a "philosophy in rhyme" dealing with the hard, dry facts of the science, it is also a satire. Chemistry has its theories, perhaps its dreams, insisted upon the more strongly in the exact ratio of their absence of solid foundation. Chemists, too, like other men and more than most men-have their rivalries, jealousies, feuds, and cliques. Even the prospect of finding their duties and the accompanying emoluments gradually absorbed by the engineers is not enough to compel them into unity. There are those who say in their actions, if not totidem verbis, "perish the profession, if we may not rule it."

There is consequently good scope for satire, even of a sterner and more uncompromising type than what is introduced in these pages. Our author, even where he points out what is unsatisfactory, is good natured and says of himself, not untruly :

"To hurt one's feelings I could no more write
Than walk to the Land's End like Walter White."


The Chemical Society.

July 7, 1876.

As a specimen of his satirical vein we quote the fol- the author remarks, the balance with its bags must be lowing:

"But as I always wish to be particular,

And act in concert with the modern school,

I must not be atomic, but molecular,

Or Williamson might take me for a fool;

So in this wise our formula we spell
Twice KCl, and ditto KCl.

Plus six of oxygen or 30,

(I think I'm right, but yet feel rather hazy;

For after thirty years or so the new

Strange formule will tend to drive one crazy,
And make him half inclined to write a letter

To some great gun and say The old are better').
I took up Frankland's book the other night
('Tis very clever, anyone may see),

And, musing, wondered could a chemist write
So quaint a work and out of Bedlam be:

And all to please his college-boys (the Turks!)
With graphic formulæ like fireworks-
With h's small and very fat round O's,
Conjointly placed near apoplectic C's

In curious brackets, which, we may suppose,

Are only there to irritate and tease.

I gave it up when reading this queer type,

And, growing sorrowful, smoked half a pipe."

placed close to the spot where the men are engaged. It must, at the same time, be secured from currents of air, from injury by falling rubbish, and from being foolishly played with.

A succeeding portion of this pamphlet treats of the manufacture of illuminating gas without the use of coal. Since his former pamphlet upon coal-gas, the author has received fourteen letters from persons who describe themselves as "interested in gas-making," and who express a hope that he will not lend himself to gas agitation." His proposal is to heat charcoal in a slow current of atmospheric air, and pass it through a receiver filled with benzoline of sp. gr. 0704, at the temperature of 50° F. The process, as is evident, is free from nuisance, and can be easily managed in a private house. As regards the cost, the author cannot speak definitely, because he has found the prices both of charcoal and benzoline vary to the extent of 300 per cent.

To get rid of gas companies, who in places where the ratepayers have not been wise enough to take such matters

Of "hydroxyl" the author exclaims somewhat pro- into their own hands generally have contrived to obtain a

fanely, but aptly

"Yet do not, if you love me, blame the muse,

But rather this damn'd radicle abuse!

dangerous amount of power, and who too often use it in a somewhat high-handed manner, would be a boon of no small magnitude. But at present the abolition of the gas

After paying a graceful tribute to the memory of manufacture, with all its admitted drawbacks, would be Faraday, Graham, and Liebig, the poet bids us—

"Then cheer up, brothers; there are many yet, Thank God! amongst us who can hold their own.

Great Time hath wrought its change and brought regret For those who once within our circle shone: Mourn as we must the many who are fled, Gilbert is with us, though his Pig is dead." Perhaps it is as well, both for Dr. Gilbert and the Society, for in these days it is hard to name any possible experiment upon or with animals which may not be construed as vivisection. Therefore let this "Fellow" rest in peace.

To make further quotations would hardly be just to our author, but we think the specimens we have given may make our readers inclined to enquire further. We believe that, like ourselves, they will conclude that the pen of this anonymous poet will be of service both to the science and to the profession.

The Miners' Curfew and other Matters, Social and Political.
By LEWIS THOMPSON, M.R.C.S. Newcastle-upon-
Tyne: Daily Journal Office.

most unpleasantly felt by those branches of industrial chemistry which utilise its by-products.

The remaining parts of this pamphlet, though by no means devoid of value, cannot be consistently noticed in the CHEMICAL NEWS.



To the Editor of the Chemical News. SIR,-The Chemical Society is undoubtedly passing through a crisis, the satisfactory termination of which will not be facilitated by the use of such expressions as "indiscriminate or reckless blackballing," "blackballing clique," "meaningless and ill-natured blackballing," &c. I am one of those who believe that blackballing has been carried somewhat too far, but I also believe that it has been done from pure motives, however mistaken they may be; and if this is so, surely it is better to meet the party by argument, and not by abuse, which will only recoil on those making use of it.

THIS pamphlet contains a description of an arrangement which is to give warning, by ringing two or three bells "as soon as ever the air that surrounds it becomes dangerous to human life from an accumulation either of fire- As far as I can learn, the present agitation is caused damp or choke-damp." The principle is that of the well-mainly by the conviction, shared by many, that the known electric bell, the circuit being closed and the bells Fellowship of the Chemical Society is, to the majority of caused to ring by a derangement in the equilibrium of a English chemists, the only distinction within reach which balance. Two oiled silk bags are taken, of a spherical might stamp them as chemists, and that such stamp form, and equal as nearly as possible in size and weight. should be made an honour worth having. Entrance into "One of these bags contains no air, but is compressed the Society has, however, it is argued, been made so easy into the shape of a plate, so as to present on each side a of late that its Fellowship has ceased to be any real dissurface equal to the area of a great circle of the other bag, tinction. It is therefore proposed to restrict entrance to which, however, is filled only to the extent of four-fifths real chemists only, and thus restore the prestige formerly with atmospheric air, and then securely tied. These bags connected with the letters F.C.S. On the other extreme are to be hung at the two arms of a balance, and carefully side, it is said that the Chemical Society has been estab counterpoised." The air in the full bag, of course, will | lished for the general promotion of chemical science, and expand and contract with the surrounding air, and hence not for the purpose of stamping its Fellows as chemists; will not be affected by barometric or thermometric changes. that for the promotion of such object much money is But if the air becomes mixed with a lighter gas, such as wanted, and that all who are willing to pay assist the light carburetted hydrogen, the filled bag will descend, Society in doing its legitimate work, and are therefore the circuit will be closed by means of a bent wire, and the entitled to be admitted as Fellows. bells will begin to sound. If, on the other hand, the air is rendered heavier by an admixture with carbonic acid, the other arm of the balance descends, and the bells are equally set in action. The bags are of oiled silk, like that used for balloons, and each of them is to contain about 250 cubic inches of air.

This idea, it must be admitted, is highly ingenious. As

Now it appears to me that much may be said on both sides of the question, and that at any rate it cannot be settled by the use of harsh terms. Would it not, then, be best for those who desire alteration to hold a public meeting, thoroughly discuss their side of the question, and, if possible, pass resolutions embodying the changes proposed? Such resolutions should then be laid before the

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