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Author: Subject: mercury from cinnabar as observed by Theophrastus
bromisovalum
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[*] posted on 11-1-2018 at 02:41
mercury from cinnabar as observed by Theophrastus


Mercury was mentioned 300 BC by Theophrastus as chytos argyros, quicksilver or liquid silver, and he states that it can be made by rubbing vinegar with cinnabar (HgS) in a copper vessel.

Has anyone tried this? It doesn't seem as much as a preparative method, I would guess that it is the copper that reduces Hg2+ to the element.
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bromisovalum
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[*] posted on 11-1-2018 at 04:55


Another possibly interesting method to turn cinnabar into something more useable is described on p730 of Mellor's Modern Inorganic Chemistry:

"the black precipitate (HgS) is almost unaffected by boiling dilute acids, though hot concentrated nitric acid gradually converts it into a white mercury thionitrate, Hg3S2(NO3)2, and finally into mercuric nitrate.

The price of mercury metal where I am has raised to ridiculously expensive levels for private individuals due to all the hysteria about its toxicity. Cinnabar however seems cheap and readily available.
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The Austrian Scientist
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[*] posted on 11-1-2018 at 09:12


You could also disolve the HgS in a polysulfide solution and reduce it with Al to Hg metal.


3Hg+2 + 2 Al --> 3 Hg + 2 Al+3

[Edited on 11-1-2018 by The Austrian Scientist]
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Texium (zts16)
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