Robert Boyle (1627-91): Work-diary XVI ('My Private Philosophicall Diary Begun this First of Jan. 1656/7')

Content: Medical and chymical recipes in English from January 1657; sources and informants of recipes are not noted

General Information


Work-diary entries

/original pagination, p. 1/

/BP 25, fol. 161/

[Authorial heading]:
My Private
Philosophicall Diary
Begun this First of Jan. 1656/7

Entry 1: Editorial notes:
Marginal notes integral to entry text

1.) Take Linseed Oyle {pound}i frankinsence {pound} ; comon Amber {ounce} ii Gummi Lacca {ounce} i; Aloes {ounce} ii Beat the Amber by it selfe & melt it by it selfe Beat the Gumme into fine powder Boyle all these with a gentle fire 2 houres (keeping the Liquor constantly stirring with a Stick least it Burne) till the Materialls be perfectly dissolv'd in the Oyle And then have you made your vernish to guild Leather with


Entry 2: Editorial notes:

2) Reduce with the Animall Calx your white Elixir into Cristalls, from which with a very strong fire draw a Sp: which will leave a light & altogether insipid Calx behind, put 2 parts of this Sp: upon one of the Salt to be wrought upon & Cohobate them till they all come over together


Entry 3: Editorial notes:
Marginal notes integral to entry text

3) Take Aquila Cælestis & dissolve it in as much water as will barely suffice for the solution of it, In this Liquor dissolve as much Sal Infernalis as you can in a gentle heat Then let it stand in the open aire, (stirring it often) till the humidity be evaporated & the bodies united this masse you may if need be once more moisten /original pagination, p. 2/ /BP 25, fol. 163/ with the Solution of the Infernall Salt & to make it dry the sooner you may Incorporate it with sifted bone=ashes & when it is perfectly dry draw it over with a strong fire & if need be severall Cohobations, In like maner you may imbibe the fixt Salt of the Homogeneous Menstruum with as much of the dissolvd volatile Salt or Sp: of the same as the fixt salt will retaine & Conjunction being made in the open aire the united Salts may be drawne over with Due Cohobation as formerly


Entry 4: Editorial notes:
Marginal notes integral to entry text

4) Take of Nitre & Allum ana & (without terra figulina or any such thing) draw over an Aqua fortis which rectifye [altered from 'rectify'd'] first per se to separate the Flegme & then the remaineing Liquor from halfe its weight of Decrepitated Sea-salt. Then in this thus doubly rectify'd Aqua fortis dissolve as much Antimonie as you can And on the Solution poure store of warm water which will precipitate a greenish Substance


Entry 5: Editorial notes:

5) Take Sulphur & melt it with as great a heat as you can without fireing it & immediatly poure it into water out of which takeing it againe melt it as before & poure it againe into fresh water this operation repeat till the Sulphur (haveing lost its Salt in the water) become soft almost like Butter then with Sp: of wine draw it over in a Retort that it may ascend in the forme of an oyle


Entry 6: Editorial notes:

6) Take sope & dissolve it in faire water & let it dry againe in the open aire then moisten it againe & let it dry as before & soe proceed by alternate Imbibitions & Exucations till the whole masse receive ['c' inserted] a new ferment.


/original pagination, p. 3/

/BP 25, fol. 162/

Entry 7: Editorial notes:

7) Take aqua Calcis vivæ (a pound of Quick=lime to a Gallon of water) & in this Liquor dissolve any Rob & when it has in a very gentle Decocting heat cast up much of the Scum which must be taken of steame away the Liquor till the Rob returne to its former Consistencie


Entry 8: Editorial notes:
Marginal notes integral to entry text

8) Take cælestiall Sublimate & put to it half its weight of pure salt of Tartar dissolv'd in a litle faire water distill it gradually in a naked fire which must at length be a reverberating one poure backe the fœtid Sp: upon its Caput mortuum & imbibe it well therewith after which (frequently stirring it let it dry of it selfe in the Aire, lastly ['l' altered from 't'] keepe it a while in <a> good Crucible in the fire to drive away what Sp: is not well fixt upon the matter the Dose is from 5 grains to a {scruple} i & it works Bezoardically


Entry 9: Editorial notes:

9) Take Miluus & salt of Tartar of each equall parts distill them over together in a strong fire then returne the extorted Liquor, (the Flegme being first separated) upon the Fæces and digest them in a moveing furnace till they be ['d' deleted] somewhat dry then redistill them as before & returne the Liquor upon the Fæces & digest them together as formerly, this doe the third & 4th time also at the last of which a strong Reverberium must be us'd


Entry 10: Editorial notes:

10) Take of the white Elixir 2 parts of the white sweet & blacke Concretes of each of these 3 1 part Incorporate these perfectly together & digest the masse without furnaces for 3 months at least & if you keepe it 6 months in ['month' deleted] Digestion it would be but soe much the better <M.M. as I think> [insertion in line, Boyle hand][insertion in line][in Boyle hand]


/original pagination, p. 4/

/BP 25, fol. 164/

Entry 11: Editorial notes:

11) Take of good Regulus of Antimonie & silver equall parts & with Sublimate make after the comon manner a Butyrum Antimonii & of that well rectify'd make {mercury} vitæ make also a Butyrum of Stella Martis


Entry 12: Editorial notes:

12) Take Aurum fulminans 1 part Flowers of {sulphur} 3 parts mingle them first lightly & very warily with your finger or any convenient Instrument then mingle them by degrees more exquisitly and this mixture cast by litle & litle into a red hot Crucible & soe the Brimstone after a litle Conflict will destroy <the> Inflamability of the Aurum fulminans


Entry 13: Editorial notes:

13) Hartmans way of drawing of Tinctures of {silver} has bin tryed & that of extracting the tinctur of {gold} will probably succeed


Entry 14: Editorial notes:

14) put faire water to the unituous Salt till the whole masse become of the consistence of such Batter as pancakes are wont to be made of & soe continue to ferment it for 12 or 14 days & then irrorate it every 4 or 5 days with the Salino-Sulphureous Menstruum & let it each time grow pretty dry of it selfe


Entry 15: Editorial notes:

15) Take hard (or in want of that) soft sope, and Minium of each equall weight distill them together & cohobate them often & to obtaine the white part put to the Minium before Distillation some salt of Lime made with Sp: of vinager