ms, in their uses for separating gold and silver from earthy particles, and in gilding.
Pliny says : Mercury is an excellent refiner of gold, for on being shaken in an earthen vessel with gold, it rejects all the impurities that are mixed with it. When once it has thus expelled these impurities, there is nothing to do but to separate it from the gold; to effect which it is poured upon leather, and exudes through it in a sort of perspiration, leaving the pure gold behind.
Vitruvius (B. C. 27) describes the manner of recovering gold from cloth in which it has been interwoven.
The cloth, he says, is to be put in an earthen vessel, and placed over the fire in order that it may be burnt.
The ashes are thrown into water, and quicksilver added to them.
The latter unites with the particles of gold, the water is poured off, and the residue put into a cloth, which being squeezed with the hands, the quicksilver, on account of its fluidity, oozes through the pores, and the gold is left pu