The Paper constitutes a highly important step in the laying of the foundations of chemistry as an exact science, and furnishes a model of carefully planned experimental investigation, and of clear reasoning upon the results of experiment.
n of the volatile alkali for acids is stronger than that of magnesia, since it separated this powder from the acid to which it was joined. But it also appears, that a gentle heat is capable of overcoming this superiority of attraction, and of gradually elevating the alkali, while it leaves the less volatile acid with the magnesia.
Dissolve a dram of any calcarious substance in the acid of nitre or of common salt, taking care that the solution be rendered perfectly neutral, or that no superfluous acid be added. Mix with this solution a dram of magnesia in fine powder, and digest it in the heat of boiling water about twenty four hours; then dilute the mixture with double its quantity of water, and filtrate. The greatest part of the earth now left in the filtre is calcarious, and the liquor which passed thro', if mixed with a dissolved alkali, yields a white powder, the largest portion of which is a true magnesia.
From this experiment it appears, that an acid qui
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