Page:Philosophical Transactions - Volume 095.djvu/352

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Dr. Wollaston on the Discovery of Palladium.

to undertake a comparative examination, from whose well known skill in chemical inquiries, as well as peculiar knowledge of the subject, we have every reason to expect a complete analysis of this ore.

ยง II. Hyacinths.

Among those bodies which may be separated from the ore of platina, in consequence of their less specific gravity, by a current of water or of air, there may be discerned a small proportion of red crystals so minute, that 100 of the largest I could collect weighed scarcely 3/10 of a grain. The quantity which I poissess is consequently too small for chemical analysis; but their physical properties are such as correspond in every respect with those of the hyacinth. I was first led to compare them with that stone by their specific gravity, which I conjectured to be considerable from their accompanying other substances, that appear to have been collected together solely by reason of their superior weight.

Like the hyacinth, these crystals lose their colour immediately and entirely when heated; they also agree with it in their hardness, which is barely sufficient to scratch quartz, but is decidedly inferior to that of the topaz.

The principal varieties of their form may be very well understood by description.

1st. In its most simple state the crystal may be considered as a rectangular prism terminated by a quadrilateral obtuse pyramid, the sides of which sometimes arise direct from the sides of the prism; but,

2dly. The position of the pyramid is generally such that its sides arise from the angles of the prism. In this case the sides of the prism are hexagons.