H2O; 284.9.

Characters. - In brilliant, white, pearly, tabular crystals, with a feeble odour of valerianic acid, and a metallic taste.

Solubility. - It is scarcely soluble in cold water or in ether, but is soluble in hot water and alcohol.

Reactions. - Heated to redness in an open crucible, it leaves a residue which, when dissolved in diluted sulphuric acid, yields with ammonia a precipitate which entirely dissolves in an excess of the reagent, and the resulting solution gives a white precipitate with sulphide of ammonium (zinc).

Preparation. - Mixing hot aqueous solutions of sulphate of zinc and valerianate of sodium, evaporating at a gentle heat and crystallising. The crystals are washed with water until free from sulphate.

Impurities. - Sulphate and butyrate of zinc from imperfect preparation.

Tests. - Its solution in hot water is not precipitated by chloride of barium (no sulphate). It gives when heated with diluted sulphuric acid a distillate, which when mixed with the solution of acetate of copper, does not immediately affect the transparency of the fluid, but forms after a little time oily drops, which gradually pass into a bluish-white crystalline deposit (no butyrate).

Dose. - 1/2 to 4 gr.; the dose may be increased until some nausea is produced.

Uses. - Valerianate of zinc has been supposed to combine the nervine tonic action of zinc with the antispasmodic effect of valerian; but it is much better to use valerian itself or its oil along with a salt of zinc, as the acid has no important physiological action. It is used in chorea, especially when occurring in hysterical persons, and should not be discontinued until symptoms of nausea begin to make their appearance. It is also employed in epilepsy and neuralgia.