The free acid, which is obtained by treating the salts with acids, is an oily liquid smelling like prussic acid; it is very explosive, and the vapour is poisonous to about the same degree as that of prussic acid.
The following poisons may not be sold, either retail or wholesale, unless distinctly labelled with the name of the article, and the word poison, with the name and address of the seller: Almonds, essential oil of (unless deprived of prussic acid).
The breathing becomes shallow, the drug killing, like nearly all neurotic poisons (alcohol, morphia, prussic acid, &c.), by paralysis of the respiratory centre, and the patient dying in a state of coma.
The first three will he treated here; for the others see Prussic Acid and Cyanamide.
CYANIDE, in chemistry, a salt of prussic or hydrocyanic acid, the name being more usually restricted to inorganic salts, i.e.
The preparation, properties, &c., of cyanides are treated in the article Prussic Acid; reference should also be made to the articles on the particular metals.
For sodium nitrite see Nitrogen; for sodium nitrate see Saltpetre; for the cyanide see Prussic Acid; and for the borate see Borax.
For the nitrite, see Nitrogen, for the nitrate see Saltpetre and for the cyanide see Prussic Acid; for other salts see the articles wherein the corresponding acid receives treatment.
About the same time he showed by a wonderful series of experiments that the colouring matter of Prussian blue could not be produced without the presence Of a substance of the nature of an acid, to which the name of prussic acid was ultimately given; and he described the composition, properties and compounds of this body, and even ascertained its smell and taste, quite unaware of its poisonous character.
PRUSSIC ACID, or Hydrocyanic Acid, Hcn, an organic acid first prepared in1782-1783by C. Scheele and subsequently examined by J.
With these exceptions, the simple cyanides are readily decomposed even by carbonic acid, free prussic acid being liberated.
It is by no means the most powerful poison known, for such an alkaloid as pseud-aconitine, which is lethal in dose of about 1/200 of a grain, is some hundreds of times more toxic, but prussic acid is by far the most rapid poison known, a single inhalation of it producing absolutely instantaneous death.
There may be an odour of prussic acid, but this soon disappears.
Its nitrile (prussic acid) has an acid character, a property not possessed by the nitriles of the other members of the series; and, by the abstraction of the elements of water from the acid,.
This tincture contains chloroform, morphine and prussic acid, and must be used with the greatest care.
But his last great piece of pure research was on prussic acid.
In a note published in 18 r.1 he described the physical properties of this acid, but he said nothing about its chemical composition till 1815, when he described cyanogen as a compound radicle, prussic acid as a compound of that radicle with hydrogen alone, and the prussiates (cyanides) as compounds of the radicle with, metals.
The proof that prussic acid contains hydrogen but no oxygen was a most important support to the hydrogen-acid theory, and completed the downfall of Lavoisier's oxygen theory;, while the isolation of cyanogen was of equal importance for the subsequent era of compound radicles in organic chemistry.
Among the substances of which he investigated the composition were ammonia, sulphuretted hydrogen and prussic acid, and his experiments on chlorine, which he regarded, not as an element, but as oxygenated muriatic (oxymuriatic) acid, led him to propose it as a bleaching agent in 1785.
Like alcohol and prussic acid, quinine interferes with oxidation, so that oxyhaemoglobin is relatively unable to give up its oxygen to the tissues, the metabolism of which is therefore greatly modified.
For the cyanides see Prussic Acid.
- This includes compounds of cyanogen such as hydrocyanic (prussic) acid, cyanides of potassium, sodium, &c., cherry-laurel water, amygdalin, bitter almonds and other chemical and vegetable substances which readily yield hydrocyanic acid.