Page:Cyclopaedia, Chambers - Supplement, Volume 2.djvu/605

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page needs to be proofread.


mere, cant word in this place, have been at infinite pains, by means of a thoufand differently varied menftruums, to obtain an oil from the common Venetian Talc, a dry ftone which in a very remarkable manner refifts the force of all menftrua, and of fire ; and from which therefore no oil can be obtain- ed. In the various operations ufed to this purpofe, fame have really hit upon liquors of a bonfiderable power; but that power has been wholly owing to the menftruums they em- ployed, nut to the ftone ; and even if it were, could have none of the effects of the oil of Talc, mentioned by thefe dark writers, who meant by it fo very different a fubftance as a folution of thefe flowers, which are only, that till of late little underftood metal, zink, in another form. See Oil of Talc, infra.

Venetian Talc, in the materia medica, the name of a foffile fubftance famous among the chemifts for the great things they have expected from the oil of it, if that could ever have been obtained ; and among the ladies of Italy, and the neighbour- ing nations, as a cofmetic, when reduced to an impalpable powder after repeated calcinations, by levigating on a por- 'phiry.

It is of an extremely irregular, though in fome degree plated or foliaceous texture, and is remarkably- fmooth and foft to the touch, of a lax and fome what crumbly texture ; the fe- veral moleculte it is compofed of cohering but flightly, either in themfelves, or with one another. It is of feveral fixes, from one inch to five or fix in diameter ; and in colour, of a pale iilvery grey, with a large admixture of green. In many of the coarfer parts of this fubftance, it may be obferved to have a great analogy with the common French chalk, or moroch- thus. It Is dug in feveral parts of Italy, and "is brought to us principally from Venice, whence it has its name. Hill's Hift. of Foil', p. 76.

Oil of 'Talc, the name of a fubftance, which has given great trouble to the chemifts of later ages.

It had been recorded by fome old writers, that oil of Talc had the power of fixing filver, that is, giving it the weight and tenacity of gold, fo that it mould no longer be diftin- guifhable as filver, nor foluble in aqua fortis, but only in aqua regia, as gold. This was all idle and imaginary, no known fubftance having any fuch power. Our chemifts of later times, fuppofing this oil was to be obtained from Vene- tian Talc, a common flaky ftone, have tortured it a thoufand ways to extract this divine liquor from it, but in vain ; for unhappily this is a ftone remarkable beyond almoft all other bodies, tor fufFering almoft nothing by any menftruum, nor even by fire itfelf. Some have however compounded liquors with the pompous names of oil of Talc, from their preparations of this ftone; but thefe have owed all their qualities to the menftruums employed in making them, not at all to the ftone ; nor indeed had they owed them to that, would they have had any relation to the oil of Talc they were fceking after. The inventors of that barbarous term having never thought of Venetian Talc, or any other ftone under the name of Talc ; but given that name to the fibrofe and cottony flow- ers of Zink, which in fome degree referable the difunited fila- ments of the fribrari;*;, or, as they are called by the vulgar, fibrofe Talc.

When zink is diflblved in diftilled vinegar, and the folution diftilled again in a cucurbit, there is firft drawn over an infi- pid phlegm ; after this there arife fome fibrofe white flowers ; and finally thefe melt down into a fulphureous liquor, which is inflammable like fpirit of wine. This being poured into a phial of water mixes with it, only leaving a few drops of a fra- grant and aromatic oil fwimming on the furface ; this floating liquid is the fo famed oil of Talc ; but this is properly no preparation of zink, or its flowers, but merely the eflential oil of the vinegar employed in the folution ; and it is eafy to conclude from this, that this (o famed liquor can poflibly have 110 title to any of the wondrous qualities afcribed to it. Mem. Acad. Scienc. Par.

TALED, in the Jewifh antiquities, a fort of habit that the Jews wore, chiefly when they repeated their prayers in the fyna- gogue. Numbers xv. 38. Deuteronomy xxii. 12. It ferved inftead of that fquare garment they wore heretofore, to which Mofes had appointed that they fhould faften borders of blue to the four quarters, and fringes or ribbands all along the borders. But at prefent, that they may not be expofed to the laughter of the people for the too great Angularity of their drefs, they content themfelves with wearing a fquare piece of cloth underneath, with four tufts at the four corners, and when they meet in the fynagogue to fay their prayers, they cover their heads with a fquare woollen veil, which has four tufts at its four corners. It is this they call Thaled, or Taled. Calmet D\£t. & Leo of Modena, Ceremonies of the Jews, P. 1. ch. 5, 11.

TALLY (CycL) — Tally the Sheets, at fea, a word of com- mand, when the flieets of a main-fail, or fore-fail ate to be haled aft. See the article Sheets.

TALPA, {Cycl.) the Mole, in the Linnzean fyftem of zoology, makes a diftinct genus of animals; the characters of which are, that they have feet with five claws on each, as well on thofe behind as on thofe before ; and have their fore-feet made like hands, and fitted for digging. Limuvi Syft. Nat. p. 37. Suppl. Vol, II,


This, though a very common animal, is very little obferved by the generality of the world. Its fur is very fhoft, foft and thick, its nofe is like that of a hog ; and its teeth like thofe of the mm araneus, being Tingle and eminent on the tides of the upper jaw, and thofe farther within the mouth armed with many points. It has fcarce any neck, its head feemine let between its moulders. Its legs are very (hort, its claws very {harp, and its toes five in number on each foot; the in- ner part or fole of the fore-feet is very broad, and much refem- bles the palm of the human hand. Its claws on thefe are more robuft and ftrong, than in any other animal of its fize : The whole feet and toes are not placed downward but Tideways, for the fake of the creature's continual employment in dig- mg, it being properly a fubterranean animal. Its tail is {hort, and hairy.

It has been fuppofed by many, that the Mole had no eyes ; and others have affirmed, that it had eyes, but that they were covered with a membrane ; but neither of thefe affertions are true. The eyes are fmall, and have apertures in the fkin, through which they may cafily be difcerned by a curious ob- ferver; and are very black, about the fize of a millet-feed, and faftened to a nerve.

The reafon they have not been obferved by the common peo- ple, is, that they are hid by the fur ; but, on blowing that away, they always fhew themfelves. It has no ears. Its fkin is extremely firm and tough, fo that it requires a {harp knife to pierce it.

This feems the care of nature to defend the creature from the cold ; and the finenefs of the fur, that is, the fmallnefs of every hair, feems proportioned to the fmall pores they had to grow out of. Ray's Syn. Quad. p. 234.

Talpa, in furgery, a name given by fome authors to an en- cyfted tumor, iituated under the fcalp. HeiJ/er's Surgery, P- 324-

TALWOOD, Taliatura, in our old writers, fire- wood cut and cleft into billets of a certain length : It is otherwife written Talgimmd, and Taljbide. Stat. 34 & 35 Hen. VIII. c. 3. 7Edw. VI. c. 7. 4 3 Eliz. c. 14. Gomel.

TAMALAPATRA, in the materia medica, a name by which fome authors have called the folium Indum, or Indian leaf, ufed in medicine. C. Baubin, Pinax. p. 409. The tree which produces this leaf is one of the Enneandria monopma of Linnasus ; and of the arbores fruilu wlyculato,

y. It is a large and lofty tree, the flowers and fruit

of Mr. R;_

of which referable the cinnamon-tree. Its leaves, when full grown, are ten inches or more in length ; and fix or eight, in breadth. The flowers ftand in clufters, in the manner of umbels on the tops of the branches, and are of a greenifh white colour. The fruit is of the bignefs of our cur- rant.

The antients recommended Indian-leaf as ftomachic, fudoti- fic, and cephalic. At prefent, it is utterly difrcgarded, being only kept in the fhops .is an ingredient in feveral compofi- tions, Vid. Hill, Hift. Mat. Med. p. 419. feq.

TAMANDUA, in natural hiftory, a creature called in Englifh, the ant-hear ; and by the Brafilians Tamandua-guacu. This animal has its Englifn name from its feeding on ants, and having its hinder feet like a bear's. It has a very long and Iharp fnout, and its tongue is flender, and extenfible to a very great length ; and it has a long and brulhy tail. De La'it. Ind. Occ. L. 16. c. 15.

The principal food of the Tamandua is ants, which he catches by fcratching open their fubterranean hives, and thrufting his long tongue into them ; when the ants are gathered in great numbers upon this, he draws it back and cats them ; and this he repeats till he is fatisfied.

His tail ferves him for a fort of cover ; and he can, upon oc- cafion, fpread it almoft over his whole body. Barlaus de Reb. Braf. p. 223.

TAMARIND, Tamarindus, in botany, the name of a genus of trees ; the characters of which are thefe : The flower is of the rofaceous kind, and is compofed of feveral petals, arranged in a circular form. The cup confifts of one leaf, divided in- to many fegments at the edge ; and from this arifes a piftil, which finally becomes a flat pod, containing in it another in which are feveral flatted and angular-ihaped feeds. The in- terftice between the two pods is filled up with a foft pulpy fubftance.

The only known fpecies of this tree is that which produces the common 'Tamarind, the pulp of which is ufed in medi- cine. Tourn. Inft. p. 660.

The characters of this genus of plants, according to Linnasus, are, that the calyx is a plain four-leaved perianthium, the leaves of an oval figure, and equal in fize. The flower is compofed of three petals, which are of an oval figure, fome- what plane and flat, but folded and gaping open ; thefe are fmaller than the leaves of the cup, and are inferted in them, leaving a vacant fpace at the bottom of the cup. The fta- mina are three filaments, which have their origin together in the cavity in the cup, and are pointed, and bent toward the petala of the flower. The antherie arc tingle : The piftil has an oval germen. The ftyle is pointed, and bent toward the {lamina ; and its ftigma is fingle. The fruit is a long pod, of a comprefled lhape, and covered with a double fkin Bibb between