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Chambers, Ephraim, 1680 (ca.)-1740 / Cyclopædia, or, An universal dictionary of arts and sciences : containing the definitions of the terms, and accounts of the things signify'd thereby, in the several arts, both liberal and mechanical, and the several sciences, human and divine : the figures, kinds, properties, productions, preparations, and uses, of things natural and artificial : the rise, progress, and state of things ecclesiastical, civil, military, and commercial : with the several systems, sects, opinions, &c : among philosophers, divines, mathematicians, physicians, antiquaries, criticks, &c : the whole intended as a course of antient and modern learning
(1728)

Meatus - Metal,   pp. 521-541 PDF (20.3 MB)


Page 532


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Menflrusim is properly defined a Body, which being ap-
plied to, or intermixed with another, does fo diffolve ir'
as that all the diffolving Parts float among the Parts dif.
folved; and fo divides it into its minutelt Parts, as that
the Parts of the DiiTolvent are intermixed with thofe of
the Body diffolved. Whence it appears, that every Men-
Jiruam in diffolving a Body, is likewife difTolved itfelf,
fo as with the Body it diffiolves, to make up one Body.
A Knife therefore divides Bread, but is not on that account
a Menfiruumr; as it does not conflitute one Body with the
Bread: but Water boil'd with the Bread is a Meijfruam,
with regard to the Bread, as it only makes up one Body
therewith. See DISSOLUTION.
The antient Chymifis were very careful in all their
Proceffles, that neither the Degree of Fire, nor the Men-
Jiraum, mightideceive 'em.
All Menjiruams, at the time they a&l as fuch, that is,
at the time they are diffolving, a& as Liquids; whether
fuch Men/iruum be a Liquid or a Solid. 'I hus, e. gr. Sil-
ver is a MenJfruum with regard to Gold; for if you take
an Ounce of Silver, melt it at the Fire, and add a Grain
of Gold ; all the Parts of the Silver will intermix them-
felves with the Parts of the Gold: fo, as that the Gold
and Silver, which before were feparate, now make one
Mafs. But Gold and Silver are only Menfiraums as they
are dilfolved by the Fire; i.e. as they are fluid.
All MenftrLturns may be divided into two Claffes ; the
firfl confifts'of fuch as are flidd; the fecond of fuch as are
jolid: that is, they are either aclually divided, or they
mull be fo e'er they aAl.
Fl/md Menfirmums are Water, Dew, Oils, Saline and
Acid Spirits, Alkali, Salts, Fc. and Solid .Menfiruums, are
fuch as muft be made fluid e'er they will diffolve ; fuch
are molt Salt!, Nitre, Vitriol, &c. See WATER, SALT,
VITRIOL, GC.
As to the AThion of AIenJiruuns ; Sir Ifaac Newton accounts
for it from the Acids wherein they are impregnated.
The Particles of Acids are found to be endued with
a firong attraiffive Force, wherein their A&ivity confiffs,
and by virtue whereof they diffolve Bodies. See AT-
TRACTION. Thefe Acids he fuppofes of a middle Na-
ture between Water, and hard Bodies, and to attrac
both. By this Attraction they gather together about the
Particles of Bodies, whether metallick, flony, or the
like, and' adhere to them very clofe, fo as fcarce to be
Separated from 'em by Diffillationo or Sublimation. Thus
firongly attracled, and gather'd together on all fides,
they raife, disjoin, and Ihake afunder the Particles of Bo-
dies, i. e. they diffolve them ; and by the attraffive Pow-
er whereby they rufh againfi the Particles of the Bodies,
they move the Fluid, and fo excite Heat, lhaking fome
of the Particles to that degree, as to convert 'em into
Air, and fo generating Bubbles. See ACID.
Dr. Neil gives us the Theory or Foundation of the Afion
of Menfiraums, in the following Propofitions.
I'. Two Corpufcles may be placed fo near each other,
without touching, as that the Force wherewith they at-
traft each other, fhall eafily exceed that of their Gra-
vitV..
f. If a Corpufcle placed in a Fluid be every way e-
qually attradted by the ambient Particles, the Corpufcle
will riot be put in any Motion; but if it be attraafed
more by fome of the Particles than by others, it will then
tcnd towards that Quarter where the Attraiftion is the
firongetl: and the Motion thus produced will be cor-
re'pondent to the Inequality of the Attraffion: That is,
if the Inequality be great, the Motion will be fo; and if
little, little.]
,O. Corpufcles fwimming in a Fluid, and attraffing
each other more than the interpofed Particles of the I
Fluid ; thore Particles of the Fluid will be driven afide, I
and the Corpufcles approach each other with a Force
equal to the Excefs of their mutual Attradfion, beyond 'd
the Attraclion of the Particles of the Fluid.       I
40. If a Body be placed in a Fluid whofe Parts attraa  N
the Particles of the Fluid more 41rongly than thofe Par- c
ticles are attraifted by one another; and if in the Body  I
there be feveral Pores pervious to the Particles of thofe
Fluid, the Fluid will prefently difFufe itfelf through the
l'ores; and if the Conneclion of the Parts in that Body
be not fo firong but that it may be exceeded by the Im- I
petus of the Particles rufhing together i the immers'd Bo- e
diy will undergo a Diffolution.
Hence, for a Menftruum to be fit to diltolve a given  p
Pody, there are three things required.  ift, That the  o
Parts of the Body attrad the Particles of the Nenflruum  ti
more firongly than thofe are attracted by each other. t]
-diy, That the Body have Pores adequate and pervious c
to the Particles of the MenJfiruum. 3dly, That the Cohe- tl
lion of the Parts of the Body be not fo frong but that it It
may be torn lfunder by the Impetus of the Particles tl
rufling together. Hencle alfo it follows, that the Par- pi
M ER
tides which conflitute Spirit of 'Wine, are more firongly
attraited by each other, than by thofe of a faline Body
immerged in it.
Hence we fee the Reafons of the different Effeffs of
different Mieftitrmsms; why fome Bodies, for inflance
Metals, difrolve in a Malint Mefirutm: Others again, as
Refin, in a firllphureous one, ;lc. particularly why Silver
diffolves in Aqua forris, and Gold only in Aqua Regalis;
all the Varieties whereof are accountable for, from the
different Degrees of Cohefion, i.e. of Attrafion in the
Parts of the Body to be diffolved, the different Diameters
and Figures of its Pores, the different Degrees, of Attrac-
tion in the Mevfirutm, and the different Diameters and
Figures of its Parts. See COHES iON. .
Suppofe, e. g. the Attraiiot of Gold to that of Sil-
ver, to be as A to B; and of Silver to .dquafortis ado 1 to d;
but that of Aqua fortis to Aqua Regia, as d to en let f
fignify the Magnitude of P'articles in Aquaforris, and
thofe in Aqua Reagia; e the Cohefion of Gold, and e the
Cohefion of Silver : If the Diameters of the Particles f,
are greater than the Diameters of the Pores of Gold,.they
can never diffolve the Gold, let their attraaflive Force be
ever fo firong. But if bl-exr be -greater than g, then the
Silver will yield to the Mketiruium whofe Particles are
and lefs than the Pores of the Silver; and if b-exr be
lefs thang, the Silver will never dilolve in the Menraum,
the Particles whereof'are r, and the attrailive Force e.
But if a-exr be greater than c, the Menjirmum made up
of the Particles r, and whofe attraftive Force is e, will
be able to penetrate and dilfolve the Gold.
How a Menjrsum may fufpend Bodies much heavier
than itfelf, which very often happens, may be conceiv'd
by confidering, that the Parts of no Fluid can be fo eafily
feparated, but they will a little refill, or retard the De-
fcent of any heavy Bodies through them ; and' that this
Refiflance is, cxteris paribus, fill proportionable to the
Surface of the defcending Bodies: But the Surfaces of
Bodies do by no means increafe, or decreafe, in the fame
Proportion as their Solidities do ; for the Solidity irt-
creafeth as the Cube, but the Surface only as the Square
of the Diameter. Small Bodies, therefore, will have
much larger Surfaces, in proportion to their folid Con-
tents, than larger Bodies will; and confequently when
exceedingly diminished, may eafily be buoyed up in the
Liquor. See DESCENT, RESISTANCE, Ec.
M1E NSTR UUM Peracuttum, a Name Mr. L oyle gives toa
Menftruum he extraied from Bread only, that would
prey on Bodies more compa& than many hard Mineralst
nay even on Glafs, and do many things that Aqua forris
would not do: With this he drew Tinztures not only from
Crude Corals, but alfo from the Lapis Hematites and
Granates, nay from -Diamonds and Rubies.  See DI-
GESTION.
MENSURATION, the AM or Art of Meafuring. See
MEA SUR IG.
MENTAL, is underflood of the Conception, or Ope-
ration of the Underfianding: Thus a Mental Prayer is
fuch a one as is made merely in the Mind, without pro-
nouncing one word of it. A Mental Refervation, &!c. See
RESERVATION.
MENTUM, in Anatomy, is the lower Part of the
Face, beneath the Mouth ; which we otherwife diflin.
guifh by the Name of Chin.
MENUET, or MINUET, a kind of Dance, the Steps
whereof are extremely quick, and Short: It confifds of a
2oupee, a high Step, and a Balance; it begins with a
Bear, and its Meafure, or Motion, is Triple.
IMEPHlTES, and MEPHITICAL Exbalations, any poi-
bonous and noxious Steams iffuing out of the Earth, from
what Caufe foever. See POISON.
The moft remarkable Places of this kind is the Grotta
le Cani near Puzzoli, about two Miles from Naples, in
taly; the Steams of which kill Dogs, or other Aninals,
whhen brought within its reach: A very curious Account
of which, and the manner of its Efficacy, is given by
)r. Mead in his Effay on Poifons. See GROTTO.
MERCERS Company. See COMPANY.
MERCERS-Cbapel School. See SCHOOL.
MERCHANDISE, or, MERCANTILE ProfegTon, the
7uniion of a Merchant; or the Art, Method, Fj)c. of
exercifing a Whole-Sale Commerce. S e COMMERCE.
The Mercantile Prof( (lion is efleemed Noble, and Inde-
pendent. In France, by two Arrets of Louis XIV. the one
f 1669. the other of 1701. the Nobility are allow'd to
rade, both by Land and Sea, without derogating from
heir Nobility : And we have frequent Inflances of Mer-
hants ennobled in that Country, in regard of the Utility of
heir Commerce, and the Manufadlures they have fet up.
i Bretagne, even a Retail Trade does not derogate from
he Nobility. When the Nobles of the Province are dif-
ofed for Commerce, they let their Nobility fleep, that
iSf
v MEN


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