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P A R I S.

MR: De Reaumur has discovered a new. Tin

cture of Purple. He read a Discourse upon that Subject in the first Assembly of the Royal Aca. demy of Sciences held after the Vacation in 1711.

He observed, That notwithstanding what has been written by the Moderns concerning the Purple Colour, so much valued by the Ancients, the Nature of the Liquor from which it proceeded, is very little known; and that the Tracts relating to this Subject, are only a Kind of a Commentary upon some Passages of Aristotle and Pliny. Whoever designs to make any Discovery in natural Things, ought to consult Nature itself, rather than the Naturalists. We find several Particulars concern. ing the Purple Colour in the Two Authors just now mentioned; but they are more proper to raise our Curiosity than to satisfy it.

Tho' those Authors (faid Mr. De Reaumur) have mentioned in several Places, that Shell-Fish, which afforded a Liquor for a Purple-die; tho' they treat of its Birth; tho they tell us how long it lived, how it was got, how that precious Liquor was taken from it, and prepared ;, yet the Tincture of Puļple, known to the Ancients, was reckoned among loft Secrets. Hence it is, that the Observations of a late English Writer up: on the Purple-die, arising from a Shellfish very com. mon upon the Coasts of England, appeared a new thing.


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That Shell-Fish is only one of those Kinds included under the Word Buccinum by the Ancients, because the Figure of those Shells is somewhat like that of a Hunter's Horn. Pliny (Lib. VII. Cap. 36.) mentions Two Sorts of Shell-Fish, that afford a Purple-die. The First are all the several Kinds of small Buccinum's; and the Second, the Shell-fish called Purpura, as well as the Colour it affords.

Mr. De Reaumur observed, That the latter Sort is not to be found upon our Shores ; but they fre. quently afford a small Kind of Buccinum, the largest whereof are about Twelve or Thirteen Lines long, and about Seven or Eight in Diameter, in the thickest Part of them. Those Shells are winded in a Spiral manner, like those of our Garden. Snails, but somewhat more stretched out.

As I was considering the Shell-Filh of that Kind upon the Shore, said Mr. De Reaumur, I found a new Tincture of Purple, which I was not looking for. I observed, that the Buccinum's were general. ly gathered together about fomne Stones, or under some sandy Arches formed by the Sea, and that they lay there in such plentiful Nunbers, that one might take up Handfulls of them ; whereas they were dispersed up and down every where else. I observed at the same Time, that those Stones, or that Sand, were full of small Grains, of a Figure somewhat like that of an Elliptick Spheroid. Those Grains were above Three Lines long, and above one Line broad. They seemed to contain White Liquor inclining to Yellow ; a Colour not much unlike that of the Liquor taken from the Buccinum's for a Purple-die. This Resemblance, and the Manner how the Buccinum's were always gathered together about those small Grains, made me think that the same Grains might perhaps afford a Purpledie, like that which is taken from that Shell-Fish. I resolved to take a narrower View of those Grains ; änd I perceived thar fome of them looked Reddish.


I immediately took some from those Stones, to which they "fuck very faft; and having squeezed their Juice upon my Ruffles, I saw no other Co. lour but something Yellowish, which I could hardly distinguish in some places. Some other Objects made me forget what I had been doing. But cafting my Eyes accidentally upon my Ruffles, half a Quarter of an Hour after, I was very agreeably furprised to see a fine Purple Colour in those Places, on which the Grains had been squeezed. I could hardly believe the Truth of such a quick Alterati. on; and therefore I took up again some of those Grains, but more carefully than I had done at first; for I chose those that appeared to me Whitest, or rather not fo Yellow as others. I squeezed them again upon my Ruffles, in several Places, and I saw no manner of Colour that came near Red. But looking upon my Ruffles about Three, or Four Minutes, I perceived they had all of a sudden a Purple Colour , as fine as the first. Which was suffici. ent to convince me, that those Grains afforded a Purple-Colour, as beautiful as that of the Buccinum's.

In the next Place, Mr. De Reaumur mentioned several Experiments, which he made in order to know whether that Liquor would last as long as that of the Buccinum's. He observed, that a Cloth dipped into the Liquor of those Grains, does not receive a Purple-Colour till it be exposed to the open Air ; that notwithstanding all his Experiments to know the Nature of those Grains, he could not dif. cover it; and that the Liquour of those Grains might be drawn a Thousand Times more conveni. ently than that of the Buccinum's by the Ancients, He said many Curious Things upon this Head ; and then he added, that the Benefit arising from those Eggs would very much exceed that, which the An. cients' reaped from the Buccinum's, because those Eggs are infinitely more plentiful than that Shell-fifti.



Lastly, He observed that the Colour of that Liquor appears very fine upon Linnen; and that painted Callico being now very much in Vogue, one might use that Liquor with very good Success to print all-Sorts of Figures upon Cloth. That Liquor, (faid he,) and also that of the Buccinum's, would be the more proper for such a Use, because it does not reach beyond the Place on which it is laid; and therefore the Figures would never be confounded.

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M R. Chevillard, Historiographer of France, and

the King's Genealogist, who has published within these Twenty Years so many Historical, and Chronological Maps, has newly put out a Map of the Emperors and Empresses of the West, from Charlemagne to this prefent Time. It contains a Chronological Succession of the German or Western Emperors, the Time of their Election, Coronation, and Death, their Alliances, &c. The same Author will shortly publish some other Works of the same Na ture, and no less curious.

An Anonymous Author has published a Compendious History of the Charch, by way of Questions and Answers, from the Beginning of the World to this present Time.

Histoire de l'Eglise en Abregé, par demandes & par réponses, depuis le commencement du Monde jufqu'à present. Paris 171. Four Volumes in 12mo. col gris mois estal 315400

LI > "This Worki is the Substance of the many Subjects, that li make up, the History of the Church. The Readers will find upon every Question all the Cir


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cumstances, that are necessary for the clearing of it.
This Abridgment is not a dry Performance; and
may serve as

a good Introduction to the Study of
Ecclesiastical History.

An Anonymous Author has newly published seve. ral Dialogues of the Dead, written for the Educa. tion of a Prince. He designs to go on with this Work, if his First Essay meets with a good Reception from the Publick.

Dialogues des Morts, composez pour l'Education d'un
Prince. Paris 1712. in 120. pagg. 314.

These Dialogues contain several Precepts to form
the Mind of a young Prince, and to qualify him
for the Government of his Subjects.

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