Alembic



a vessel with a beaked cap or head, formerly used in distilling.
anything that transforms, purifies, or refines.
Historical Examples

The alembic proper is a sort of still-head which can be luted on to a flask or other vessel, and was much used for distillations.
Alchemy: Ancient and Modern H. Stanley Redgrove

This is the crucible from which is distilled the alembic of power.
The Life Radiant Lilian Whiting

My travelling fund had melted away in the alembic of cafés, theatres, masquerades, and “quadroon” balls.
The Quadroon Mayne Reid

A French physician, who travelled in China, says he never saw an alembic or distillatory apparatus in the whole country.
Travels in China, Containing Descriptions, Observations, and Comparisons, Made and Collected in the Course of a Short Residence at the Imperial Palace of Yuen-Min-Yuen, and on a Subsequent Journey through the Country from Pekin to Canton John Barrow

Put your pot under a chimney and hang thereupon an alembic Cap, whose mouth should relate to that of the pot.
A Discovrse of Fire and Salt (A Discourse of Fire and Salt) Blaise de Vigenre

In some countries, the alembic is used as a condenser, instead of a worm.
Popular Technology, Vol. I (of 2) Edward Hazen

It was formed by Lacaille, and is supposed to represent a chemical furnace with an alembic and receiver!
Astronomical Curiosities J. Ellard Gore

The golden ore was passing through the alembic of adversity.
History of the Colony and Ancient Dominion of Virginia Charles Campbell

A thousand influences are poured into the alembic of the spirit, and serenity issues forth in modest splendor.
The Reconstructed School Francis B. Pearson

I then turned my attention to a receiver, connected by a worm with an alembic on the furnace.
Auriol W. Harrison Ainsworth

noun
an obsolete type of retort used for distillation
anything that distils or purifies
n.

late 14c., from Middle French alambic (13c.), via Old Spanish, from Arabic al-anbiq “distilling flask,” from Greek ambix “cup,” of unknown, possibly Semitic, origin. Often spelled limbeck 15c.-17c.

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