Hgii = 200.6.

(Syn., Hydrarg., Quicksilver, Hydrargyrum Vivum, Mercurius Vivus, Argentum Vivum; Fr. Mercure, Vif Argent; Ger. Quecksilber.)

The element mercury (after the messenger of the gods, from its mobility, quicksilver, similar origin; L. hydrargyrum: Gr.

Hydrargyrum Mercury 914


Hydrargyrum Mercury 915

whiteness, lustre) is round as globules in the metallic state and as mercuric sulphide, cinnabar, in mines or spain, Austria, California, Peru, Japan, Mexico. The metal is obtained by roasting cinnabar in the air, which dissipates SO2, and leaves Hg behind; or may distil it with lime, which combines with the sulphur, and the mercury, being volatile, is conveyed into cooling chambers, where it condenses. It is a shining, silver-white metal, liquid at ordinary temperatures, easily divisible into spherical globules; at - 40° C. ( - 40° F.) forms a ductile, malleable mass; odorless; tasteless; sp. gr. 13.5; insoluble in ordinary solvents, concentrated hydrochloric acid, sulphuric acid (dissolving in latter when boiled); soluble in nitric acid; contains 99. 5 p. c. of pure mercury; forms 2 series of compounds: mercuric (Hg), mercurous (Hg2). Tests: 1. At ordinary temperature - volatilizes slowly, more rapidly with increased heat; boils at 358° C. (677° F.), volatilizes with residue .02 p. c. 2. Dropped upon white paper - globules roll about freely, retain form, and leave no streaks or traces. 3. Must be dry, with bright surface even after agitation in contact with air.

Tests for Mercury Salts: 1. H2S or NH4SH precipitates black mercuric (and mercurous) sulphide. 2. KI precipitates green mercurous iodide and red mercuric iodide, soluble in excess. 3. Potassium, sodium, or calcium hydroxide precipitates brownish-black mercurous oxide (Hg2O) and yellow mercuric oxide (HgO). 4. Ammonium hydroxide precipitates black mercurous ammonium salt and white mercuric ammonium salt. 5. Metallic copper placed in acid mercuric solution soon becomes coated with metallic mercury.

Preparations. - 1. Hydrargyrum cum Creta. Mercury with Chalk. (Syn., Hydrarg. cum Cret., Gray Powder, AEthiop's Cretaceus; Fr. Mercure avec la Craie; Poudre de Mercure crayeux; Ger. Quecksilber mit Kreide.)

Manufacture: Shake by hand, or mechanically, mercury 38 Gm., clarified honey 10, water 2 Ml. (Cc), in a strong bottle, until globules no longer visible under lens magnifying 4 diameters (10 hours); rub prepared chalk 57 Gm. with water q. s. for creamy paste, add contents of bottle, triturate to uniform mixture, dry to 100 Gm., pulverize. It is a light gray, rather damp powder, non-gritty, odorless, slightly sweet taste; contains 37-39 p. c. of mercury. Impurities: Mercurous oxide, mercuric oxide. Should be kept dark, in well-closed containers, owing to ready oxidation of so finely divided mercury. Dose, gr. 5-10 (.3-6 Gm.), twice daily; children, gr. 1/6-3 (.01-2 Gm.).

2. Massa Hydrargyri. Mass of Mercury. (Syn., Mass. Hydrarg., Blue Mass, Blue Pill, Massa Ccerulea, Pilulae Cceruleae; Br. Pilula Hydrargyri, Mercury Pill; Fr. Masse pilulaire bleue, Pilule de Mercure; Ger. Mercurial Pillen (masse).)

Manufacture: 33 p. c. Triturate oleate of mercury 1 Gm. in a warm mortar, gradually add mercury 33 Gm., and then gradually honey of rose 32 Gm., triturating until globules of mercury are no longer visible under a lens magnifying 10 diameters; add gradually glycerin 9, glycyrrhiza 10 Gm. and althaea 15 Gm.; triturate until mass homogeneous. Dose, gr. 3-15 (.2-1 Gm.).

3. Unguentum Hydrargyri. Mercurial Ointment. (Syn., Ung. Hydrarg., Blue Ointment, Unguentum (Mercuriale) Neapolitanicum; Br. Mercury Ointment; Fr. Pomatum cum Hydrargyro, Pommade (Onguent) Mercurielle a parties egales, Pommade napolitaine; Ger. Quecksilbersalbe.)

Manufacture: 50 p. c. Triturate oleate of mercury 2 Gm., in a warm mortar, with mercury 50 Gm., added gradually, until globules completely divided and distributed, set aside for 15 minutes; melt benzoin-ated lard 25 Gm., prepared suet 23 Gm., allow to cool partially, add 2.5 Gm. of it to the mercurial mixture, triturate until globules of mercury are no longer visible under a lens magnifying 10 diameters, then incorporate the remainder, mix thoroughly.

Prep.: 1. Unguentum Hydrargyri Dilutum. Diluted Mercurial Ointment. (Syn., Ung. Hydrarg. Dil., Blue Ointment; Fr. Onguent mercuriel dilue; Ger. Unguentum Hydrargyri Cinereum, Ver-dunnte Graue Quecksilbersalbe.) Manufacture: 30 p. c. Mix thoroughly mercurial ointment GO Gm., petrolatum 40 Gm. When for hot-weather use, may replace 5-10 p. c. of petrolatum by yellow wax.

4. Unguentum Hydrargyri Nitratis. Ointment of Mercuric Nitrate. (Syn., Ung. Hydrarg. Nit., Citrine Ointment, Unguentum (Hydrargyri) Citrinum; Fr. Pomatum Citrinum, Pommade Citrine, Onguent Citrin; Ger. Quecksilbernitratsalbe.)

Manufacture: Melt in a porcelain dish lard 76 Gm., at 45° C. (113° F.), add nitric acid 7 Gm., at once, continue heat until characteristic reaction is complete, holding an inverted glass funnel over the dish to protect operator from spurting lard; withdraw heat immediately after rapid rise of froth accompanying the end of reaction, cool, stirring until it assumes a bright citrine color; dissolve mercury 7 Gm. in nitric acid 10.5 Gm., warming if necessary to prevent crystallizing, and add it to the prepared lard; avoid metallic utensils and containers.

Unoff. Preps.: Emplastrum Hydrargyri; mercury 30 Gm., oleate of mercury 1 Gm., hydrous wool fat 10 Gm., melted lead plaster q. s. 100 Gm. Linimentum Hydrargyri (Br.), 40 p. c. Petroxolinum Hydrargyri, 30 Gm., + hydrous wool fat 13, oleic acid 2, solid petroxolin 55. Unguentum Hydrargyri Compositum (Br.); mercury ointment 40 p. c. (Hg 12 p. c). Unguentum Hydrargyri Nitratis (Br.); mercury 10 Gm., nitric acid 30 Ml. (Cc), prepared lard 40 Gm., olive oil 70 Gm. Unguentum Hydrargyri Nitratis Dilutum (Br.); mercuric nitrate ointment 20 Gm., soft paraffin, yellow 80 Gm.