Indian Historical sources n gun powder

Source: History science technology

Michael Scot (1180?-1236?) was translating from Arabic in Toledo in 1217, and after 1227 was court astrologer and philosopher to Frederick II at Palermo. In the Cambridge manuscript of De Alkimia, attributed to Scot, three kinds of nitrum are given. “Sal nitrum de puncta is said to come from India, and Alexandria. It is tested by putting it on burning coals, and if it does not decrepitate or make a noise it is good. There is also a foliated Sal nitrum somewhat long and thick with a taste something like vinegar when touched with the tongue and not salty, and it makes a flame over a fire. It is mentioned in some books that it is the best for making mercury malleable, and changes copper into the best gold. It is found in Spain and is exported from Aleppo. A third kind is nitrum depilatum, from Hungary and Barbary. It cleans dried pork.”

The Karshuni manuscript classifies natrun under the salts also. It says that “Salt consists of seven varieties, namely, 1) salt for food, 2) salt of goldsmiths , 3) Andarani salt, 4) naphtha and natrun salt, 5) Khurasani salt, 6) Indian salt, and 7) natrun which is the nitra salt.


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