There are two kinds of Sealing-wax, generally used; the one is hard, for the sealing of letters, and similar purposes: the other soft, fox receiving the impressions of seals of office to charters, patents, and other written documents.
In order to prepare the best hard red sealing-wax, take two parts of shell-lac, with one of resin, and one of vermillion ; let these ingredients be reduced to a fine powder; melt them over a moderate fire ; and, when they are thoroughly incorporated, form the composition into Sticks. - Seed-lac may be substituted for the shell-lac, and in-d of resin, boiled Venice turpentine may be employed. - A coarser kind of such sealing-wax may be manufactured by mixing equal parts of resin, and of shell-lac (or vermillion and red-lead, in the proportion of one part of the former, to two of the latter) ; then proceeding in the manner above directed. But, where large quantities of this wax are consumed, both the vermillion and shell-lac are generally omitted, so that it may be obtained at a much cheaper rate.
Black sealing-wax is composed of gum-lac, or shell-lac, melted with one-half or one-third of its weight of levigated ivory-black. To prevent the composition from becoming too brittle, Venice turpentine, in the proportion of two-thirds of the above ingredients, is usually added; as it likewise contributes to improve the beauty of the manufacture. These substances being melted, and properly stirred over a slow fire, the liquid is next poured upon an iron plate, or stone, previously oiled ; and, while soft, it must be rolled into sticks; which are then exposed to heat, till they acquire a glossy surface.
Uncoloured soft sealing-wax is commonly prepared of bees-wax 1 lb.; of turpentine 3 oz.; and of olive-oil, 1 os.: these ingredients are carefully boiled in a proper 1 for some time ; till the compound become fit to be formed into rolls, or cakes, for use. And, in order to impart to it the requisite colour, one ounce or more of either of the pigments above mentioned may be added, stirring the mass till the whole be duly combined.