Page images
PDF
EPUB

into a wall, for the commodious and agreea trate of lead is then dropped in, and the ble placing a statue.

liquor evaporated hy a very gentle heat NICKEL. A white metal, which, when but not quite to dryness. Alcohol poured obtained pure, is both ductile and malle into this solution precipitates every salt, able. It may be forged into very thin but the nitrate of nickel, which has been plates, their thickness not being greater formed by the double decomposition of the than 0.01 of an inch. Its colour is inter arseniate of nickel and the nitrate of lead. mediate between that of silver and tin, and The alcohol of the solution of nitrate of is not altered by the air. It is nearly as nickel being evaporated, the metallic salt is hard as iron. Its specific grayity is 8.279, redissolved in water and decomposed by and when forged 8.666.

potash. The oxide, well washed and dried, The species of nickel ores are its alloy is reduced in an Hessian crucible lined with with arsenic, and a little sulphur and its lamp-black. oxide.

By the experiments that have been made The first is the most abundant, and the on nickel in its puie state, it appears to be one from which nickel is nsually extracted. proved that it is possessed of magnetic It is known to mineralogists by the name of power, and that therefore iron is not the kupfer-nickel, or copper-nickel, from its only metal to which it belongs. The mag. colour and appearance. It occurs generally netic properties of nickel had ofien been massive and disseminated ; its colour is observed ; but as in the msual processes by copper-red of varions shades; its lustre is which it is obtained, it is always alloyed weakly, shining, and metallic; it is per with iron ; it was concluded, with probabifectly opaque ; its fracture is uneven ; it is lity, that the magnetism it exhibited. was hard, has no malleability, but is not easily owing to the presence of that metal. Since broken ; its specific gravity is from 6.6 to methods, however, have since been disco. 7.5. Urged by the flame of the blow.pipe, vered of obtaining nickel in a purer state, it gives vapours with a strong arsenical the error of this conclusion has been discoodour, and melts with difficulty. It dis- vered. The effect of the magnet on it is solves in acids, giving a green solution. Berg. very little interior to that which it exerts on man found it to be composed of nickel, iron ; and the metal itself becomes magiron, cobalt, arsenic, and sulphur. Vau- netic itself by friction with a magnet, or quelin regards it as essentially an alloy of even by beating with a hammer. Magnetic nickel and arsenic, the iron, cobalt, and needles have even been constructed of it in sulphur, being accidental.

France, and have been preferred to those of The other species, the oxide of nickel, steel, as resisting better the action of the occurs generally as an incrustation, some air. The nickel preserves its magnetic times also disseminated of a friable texture property when alloyed with copper, though and earthly appearance ; of an apple green it is somewhat diminished; by a small colour, without lustre. It is not altered by portion of arsenic it is completely de. the heat of the blow-pipe ; but when mixed stroyed. with borax, gives to it a yellowish red co- Nickel is extremely fusible ; its fusing lour. Its solution in acids is of a green co. point being higher than that of iron. . lour. It occurs generally with kupfer. This metal is oxyded by exposure to the nickel, or with certain cobalt ores. It is atmospheric air at a bigh temperature, also contained in small quantities in a fossil thongh with difficulty. Its oxide is more of the siliceous genus, chrysoprase, to easily obtained by exposure to heat with which it communicates an apple-green co- pitre ; it is of an apple green colour, and is lour.

obtained likewise of this colour by precipi. Nickel is extracted from the kupfer- tation from some of its saline combinations, nickel, but it is extremely difficult to free It appears to be the oxide at the minimum it entirely from the metals with which it is of oxydement; at least, according to the associated. The process given by Chenevix experiments of Thenard, another oxide can is the most simple. The metal obtained be formed more highly oxyded. It may be from kupfer-nickel, by roasting and fusion obtained by exposing the green oxide to a with three times its owu weight of black red heat, or by heating it with oxymuriatic flux, is dissolved in nitric acid, the solution acid. It appears therefore to by too biglily being boiled, so that the arsenic present re- oxydized to be capable of directly com. ceiving oxygen from the acid may be con- bining with any of the acids. According to verted into arsenic acid ; a solution of ni. Richter, oxide of nickel is reduced by lcat

alone ; and the only difficulty experienced found in the bird and fish-kind, wliich covers is the intensity of the heat required to fuse the eyes of these animals, sheltering them the metal.

from the dust or from too much light ; yet Nickel is oxydized and dissolved by a is so thin and pellucid, that they can see number of acids ; its solutions being gene. pretty well through it. rally of a green colonr and crystallizable. NIDUS, among naturalists, signifies a

The salts of nickel are decomposed by nest, or proper repository for the eggs of the alkalies, and the oxide, more or less free birds, insects, &c. wherein the young of from the acid, is throwu down. If the these animals are hatched and nursed: alkalies are added in excess, they re-dissolve - NIEUWENTYT (BERNARD), in bioit; and with ammonia in particular, solublegraphy, a celebrated Dutch philosopher triple salts are formed. Potash and soda and mathematician, in the seventeenth and dissolve even a small quantity of its pure early part of the eighteenth century, was oxide ; ammonia dissolves it in a much the son of a minister of Westgraafdyk, in larger qnantity.

North Holland, where he was born in the Nickel combines with sulphar by fusion. year 1654. He afforded early indications The compound has a yellow colour with of a good genius, and a love of learning, some brilliancy. It is brittle and hard, which his father took care to encourage, by and burns when strongly heated in contact giving him the advantages of an excellent with the air. Nickel is also dissolved by the education. He was desirous of becoming alkaline sulphurets.

acquainted with all the branches of know. With phosphorus, nickel unites, either by ledge; but he had the prudence and saprojecting the phosphorus on the nickel at gacity to proceed gradually in his acquirea high temperature, or by heating together ments, and to make himself master of one pliosphoric acid and nickel with a little science, before he directed his attention to charcoal. The nickel increases in weight another. It was his father's wish that he one-fifth. The compound is of a white co. should be educated to his own profession; lour with metallic lustre, and appears com- but when he found that his son was disinposed of a congeries of prisms.

clined to such a destination, he very proNickel forms alloys with a number of the perly suffered him to fo:low the bent of his metals; but our knowledge of these combi- own genius. The first science to which nations is very imperfect.

young Nieuwentyt particularly directed his NICOTIANA, in botany, tobacco, a study, was logic, in order to fix lois imagina. genns of the Pentandria Monogynia class tion, to form his judgment, and to acquire a and order. Natural order of Luridæ. So habit of right reasoning; and in this science laneæ, Jussieu. Essential character: co. he grounded himself upon the principles of rolla funnel form, with a plaited border ; Des Cartes, with whose philosophy he was stamina inclined ; capsule two-valved, two- greatly delighted. In the next place, he celled. There are seven species, of which engaged in the study of the mathematics, N. rustica, English tobacco, seldom rises with the various departments of which he more than three feet in height, having became intimately conversant. snio oth alternate leaves upon short foot He then entered upon the study of mestalks; flowers in small loose bunches on dicine, and the branches of knowledge the top of the stalks, of a yellow colour, ap- more immediately connected with that scipearing in Jaly, which are succeeded by ence; and he afterward went through a roundish capsules, ripening in the autumn. course of reading on jurisprudence. In the Sir Walter Raleigh, on his return from study of all these sciences he sncceeded so America, is said to have tirst introduced the well, as deservedly to acquire the character smoking of tobacco into England. In the of a good philosopher, a good mathematihouse in which he lived at Islington, are his cian, and an able just magistrate. From arms, with a tobacco plant on the top of the his writings it also appears, that he did not shield. It is remarkable that tobacco has permit his various subjects of inquiry to diprevailed over the original name, petum, in vert his thoughts from a due attention to the all the European languages with very little great and fundamental principles of patuvariation, and even in Tartary and Japan. ral and revealed religion. He was natu. Tobacco is derived from the island Tobago. rally of a grave and serious disposition ; Petum is the Brasilian name.

but at the same time a very affable and NICTITATING membrane, in compara agreeable companion. So engaging were tive anatomy, a thin membrane, chiefly his manners, that they conciliated the

B %

esteem of allhis acquaintance ; by which noza, which was pnblished in Dutch at Ammeans he frequently drew over to his sterdam, in 1720, quarto." opinion those who differed widely from him NIGELLA, in botany, fennel Awwer, a in sentiment. With such a character, he genus of the Polyandria Pentagynia class acquired great credit and influence in the and order. Nadiral order of Multisilique. council of the town of Puremerende, where Ranunculaceæ, Jussieu. Essential charache resided; and also in the states of that pro- ter : calyx none; petals five ; nectary five, vince, who respected bim the more, because two-lipped, within the corolla ; capsule as he never engaged in any cabals or factions, many, connected. There are five species ; but recommended himself only by an open, these are annual herbaceons plants, with manly, and upright behaviour. Had he pinnate or bipinnate leaves, and linear leafaspired after some of the higher offices of lets ; flowers terminating, in some species. goverment, there is no doubt but that his surrounded with a five-leaved calyx like merits would bave secured to him the multifid involucre, suffrages of his countrymen ; yet he pre- NIGHT, that part of the natural day ferred to such honours the cultivation of the during which the sun is underneath the hosciences, contenting himself with being rizon ; or that space wherein it is dusky. counsellor and burgomaster, without court. Night was originally divided by the Heing or accepting any other posts, which brews, and other eastern nations, into three might interfere with his studies. He died in parts, or watchings. The Romans, and 1718, at the age of sixty-three, having been afterwards the Jews from them, divided the twice married. He was the author of va- night into four parts, or watches, the first of rious works, among which are, “ Consi- which began at sun-set and lasted till nine derationes circa Analyseos ad quantitates at night, according to our way of reckon. Infinite parvas applicatæ Principia, &c.” ing; the second lasted till midnight; the 1694, octavo ; in which he proposed some

in which he proposed some third till three in the morning; and the difficulties on the subject of the analysis of fourth ended at sun-rise. The ancient infinitesimals. “ Anylysis Infinitorum, seu Gauls and Germans divided their time not Corvilineorum proprietates, ex Polygono- by days but by nights ; and the people of rum deductæ," 1696, quarto ; which is a se- Iceland and the Arabs do the same at this quel to the former, with attempts to remove day. The like is also observed of our Saxon those difficulties. “ Considerationes Se- ancestors. cundæ circa Calculi Differentialis Principia, NIGHTINGALE. See MOTACILLA. et Responsio ad Virum nobilissum G. G. NIGRINE, in mineralogy, a species of Leibnitium, &c." 1696, quarto; occasioned the Menachine genus. Colour dark brownby an attack of Leibnitz on the author's ish-black, passing to velvet black; it occurs • Analysis," in the Leipsic Journal for in larger and smaller angular grains ; spe. 1695. "A Treatise on the new Use of the cific gravity 4.5. It is not attracted by the Tables of Sines and Tangents, ” 1714. magnet; it is infusible per se, but with “ The proper Use of the Contemplation of borax it melts to a transparent hyacinth-red the Universe, for the Conviction of Atheists globule ; it yields its menachine to acid of and Unbelievers," 1715, quarto ; of which a sugar. This species is found in Transylvania, French translation was published at Paris, consisting of yellow sand, intermixed with in 1725, quarto, entitled, “ L'Existence de fragments of granite, gneiss, and mica-slate, Dieu demontrée par les Merveilles de la and from which gold is obtained by washNature ;" and also an English one at Lon- ing. It comes to us commonly intermixed dop, in 1716, in three volumes, octavo, un- with grains of precious garnet, cyanite, and der the title of " The Religious Philoso- common sande Its name is derived from plier, or, the right Use of contemplating the its black colour; it is distinguished from Works of the Creator.” A Memoir in- menachanite by its stronger lustre, superior serted in a Dutch Journal, entitled, “ Bib- hardness, the colour of the streak, as well as liothéque de l'Europe," for the year 1716, by its not being in the smallest degree afin defence of the preceding work against a fected by the magnet, which also distincriticism of M. Bernard, in the “Nouvelles guishies it from iron-sand. Its constitueut de la Republique des Lettres,” “A Letter parts are, to M. Bothpia de Burmania, on his Article Oxide of menachine............... 84 concerning Meteors," inserted in the “Non Oxide of iron......................... 14 velles litter, du 22 Avril, 1719:" and about Oxide of manganese .............. 2 3 month before liis death, he put the finish

100 ing hand to an excellent refutation of Spi.

NILOMETER, sometimes called Nilo. nour of Guill. Nissole, M. D., of Montpelscope, an instrument used among the an- lier; a genus of the Diadelphia Decandria cients to measure the height of the water in class and order. · Natural order of Papithe river Nile, in its periodical overflow. lionaceæ, or Leguminosæ. Essential cha

ings. It was first set up, it has been as. racter: calyx tive-toothed; capsule one· serted, by Joseph, during his government seeded, ending in a ligulate wing. There

in Egypt. The measure of it was sixteen are two species, viz. N. arborea, tree nissocubits, this being the height to which it lia; and N. fraticosa, shrubby nissolia, both must rise in order to insure the fruitfulness batives of Carthagena, in woods and coppices. of the country.

NITIDULA, in natural history, a genus NINTH, in music, an interval contain- of insects of the order Coleoptera. Anten. *ing an octave and a tone; also a name næ clavate, the club solid; shell margined; given to the chord consisting of a common head prominent; thorax a little flattened, chord with the eighth advanced one note. margined. There are about forty-two spe. &

NIPA, in botany, a genus of the Appen- cies enumerated by Gmelin, separated into dix Palmæ class. Natural order of Pal- sections according to the form of the lip. mæ or Palms. Essential character: male, A. Lip cylindrical, B. Lip square. N. bispathe ; corolla six-petalled: female, spathe; pustalata, is oval, black; shells with a red corolla none; drapes angular. There is dot. It inhabits Europe, and lives on carbut one species, riz. N. fruticans, the young cases, meat, bacon, &c. palm, is without the trunk; but in the adult NITRARIA, in botany, a genus of the state, it is some feet in height; leaves pin. Dodecandria Monogynia class and order. nate; pinnas striated, margined, and smooth; Natural order of Ficoideæ, Jussieu. EsAowers male and female on the same palm; sential character: calyx five-cleft; corolla but distinct on different peduncles : males five-petalled, with the petals arched at top; several, lateral, inferior, on dichotomous stamina fifteen or more; drape one-seeded. peduncles, in spikes: females terminating. There is but one species, viz. N schoberi. aggregate in a globular bead, sessile. It is Thick-leayed Nitraría. a native of Java and other islands in the NITRATES, in chemistry, salts formed East Indies, where the leaves are used for of the nitric acid, and alkalies, earths, &c. covering houses and making mats. The They possess the following properties : solafruit is eaten both raw and preserved. hle in water, and capable of crystallizing by

NIPPLES, in anatomy. See MAMMARY cooling; when heated to redness with comgland.

bustible bodies, a violent combustion and deNISI PRIUS, a commission directed to tonation is produced : sulphuric acid disenthe judges of assize, empowering them to gages from them fumes which have the odour try all questions of fact issuing out of the of nitric acid: when heated with muriatic courts at Westminster, that are then ready acid, oxymuriatic acid is driven off: they for trial by jury. The original of which are decomposed by heat, and yield at first name is this : all causes commenced in the oxygen gås. There are twelve nitrates, of courts of Westminster-hall, are, by course which the most important is the nitrate of of the courts, appointed to be tried on a potash, or nitre : this salt, known also by day fixed in some Easter or Michaelmas the name of salt-petre, is produced natuterm, by a jury returned from the county rally in considerable quantities, particularly where the cause of action arises ; but with in Egpyt, and has been known from time this proviso, nisi prius justiciarii ad assisas immemorial. Roger Bacon mentions it incapiendus venerint : that is, unless before der the name of nitre, in the thirteenth the day prefixed, the judges of assize came century. The importance of this substance into the county in question, which they at- for the purposes of war, has led chemists to ways do in the vacation preceding each seek the best means of preparing it, espe. Easter and Michaelmas term, and there try cially as nature has not laid up large maga. the cause ; and then, upon the return of the zines of it, as she has of other salts. It is verdict given by the jury, to the court now ascertained, that nothing more is peabove, the judges there give judgment for cessary for the production of nitre than a the party for whom the verdict is found. basis of lime, heat, and an open, but not All trials at law, in the civil courts and at too free communication with dry atmo.. the assizes, are tried by this process, and spheric air.. When these circumstances are called trials at nisi prius.

combine, the acid is tirst formed, and afterNISSOLIA, in botany, so named in ho- wards the alkali. See NITRIC acid.

...........

NITRE. See NITRATES. Nitre is found phosphorus is used instead of charcoal. Ni. abundantly on the surface of the earth, in tre oxydizes all the metals at a red heat. India, South America, South Africa, and The composition of nitre, according tu Kir. even in some parts of Spain. In Germany wan, is and France it is obtained by means of arti

Acid ...

...............44 ficial nitre-beds. These consist of the re

Potash...

....51.8 fuse of animal and vegetable bodies, under

Water ............................... 4.2 going putrefaction, mixed with calcareous

100.0 and other earths. It has been ascertained, that if oxygen gas be presented to azote at the instant of its disengagement, nitric acid Nitre furnishes all the nitric acid in all is formed. This seems to explain the ori. its states, employed either by chemists or gin of the acid in these beds. The azote, artists: it is obtained by decomposing it disengaged from these putrifying animal by means of the sulphuric acid. When substances, combines with the oxygen of burnt with tartar, it yields a pure carbothe air. The potash is probably furnished, nate of potash. In the assaying of various partly at least, by the vegetables and the ores it is indispensable, and is equally nesoil. The nitre is extracted from these cessary in the analysis of many vegetable beds, by lixiviating the earthy matters with and animal substauces. But one of the water. This water, when sufficiently im most important compounds, formed by .pregnated, is evaporated, and a brown.co. means of nitre, is gunpowder, which has loured salt obtained, known by the name completely changed the modern art of war. of crude nitre. It consists of nitre, com. The discoverer of this compound, and the mon salt, nitrate of lime, and various other person who first thought of applying it to salts. The foreign salts are either sepa the purposes of war, are unknown. It is rated by repeated crystallizations, or by certain, however, that it was used in the washing the salt repeatedly with small fourteenth century. From certain are quantities of water; for the foreign salts chives, quoted by Wiegleb, it appears, that being more soluble, are taken up tirst. cannons were employed in Germany before Nitre, when slowly evaporated, is obtained the year 1372. No traces of it can be in six-sided prisms, terminated by six-sided found in any European author, previous to pyramids; but for most purposes, it is pre- the thirteenth century; but it seems to ferred in an irregular mass, because in that bave been knowu to the Chinese long bestate it contains less water. The specific fore that period. There is reason to be gravity of nitre, as ascertained by Dr. Wat- lieve, that cannons were used in the battle son, is 1,9. Its taste is sharp, bitterish, and of Cressy, which was fought in 1346. They cooling. It is very britule. It is soluble in seen even to have been used three years seven times its weight of water, at the tem- earlier at the siege of Algesiras; but before perature of 60°, and in rather less than its this time, they must have been known in own weight of boiling water. When ex- Germany, as there is a piece of ordnance at posed to a strong heat it melts, and congeals Amberg, on which is inscribed the year by cooling into an opaque mass, which has 1303. Roger Bacon, who died in 1299, been called mineral crystal. Whenever it knew the properties of gunpowder; but it melts, it begins to disengage oxygen; and, does not follow that he was acquainted with by keeping it in a red heat, about the third its application to fire-arms. See GUNPOW. of its weight of that gas may be obtained : DER. When three parts of nitre, two parts towards the end of the process azotic gas is of potasli, and one part of sulphur, all 'pre. disengaged. If the heat be continued long viously well dried, are mixed together in a enough, the salt is completely decomposed, warm mortar, the resulting compound is and pure potash remains behind. It deto- known by the name of fulminating powder. nates more violently with combustible bodies If a little of this powder be put into an than any of the other nitrates. When mix iron spoon, and placed upon burning coals, ed with one-third part of its weight of cbar. or held above the flame of a candle, it gra. coal, and thrown into a red-hot crucible, or dually blackens, and at last melts. At that when charcoal is thrown into red-hot nitre, instant it explodes with a very violent redetonation takes place, and one of the most port, and a strong impression is made upon brilliant combustions that can be exhibited. the bottom of the spoon, as if it bad been The residuuin is carbonate of potash. A pressed down very violently. This sudden still more violent detonation takes place, if and violent combustion is occasioned by

« PreviousContinue »