One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A pear-shaped earthenware or glass pot, open at both ends to enable a series to be fitted one above another, formerly used in sublimation and other chemical processes.
- ‘He employed alembics for distillations and aludels for sublimations.’
- ‘These which form a renaissance laboratory include eight hundred relics, including triangular crucibles, shallow scorifiers, bone-ash cupels, aludels, and other artifacts.’
- ‘The similarity in principle between the aludel and furnace described above, and the uthal and mustauqad of the last pages of our analysis, proves that so far as instruments are concerned, he has over-estimated the inventive capacity of the Middle Ages.’
- ‘And in this welter of spoiled treasure were the great conjuring books hurled amid the ruin of retorts and aludels of glass and lead and silver, tossed and broken on the chamber floor.’
- ‘The aludel was widely used in Isaac Newton's day for heating various chemicals.’
Late Middle English: from Old French alutel, via Spanish from Arabic al-'uṯāl ‘the sublimation vessel’.
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