The History of the Alembic tool

History of the Alembic

Dioscorides’ ambix (described in his De materia medica) is a helmet-shaped lid for gathering condensed mercury. For Athenaeus (~ 225 C.E.) it is a bottle or flask. For later chemists it denotes various parts of crude distillation devices.

Alembic drawings appear in works of Cleopatra the Alchemist, Synesius, and Zosimos of Panopolis. There were alembics with two (dibikos) and three (tribikos) receivers.[4] According to Zosimos of Panopolis, the alembic was invented by Mary the Jewess.[5]

The anbik is described by Ibn al-Awwam in his Kitab al-Filaha (Book of Agriculture), where he explains how rose-water is distilled. Amongst others, it is mentioned in the Mafatih al-Ulum (Key of Sciences) of Khwarizmi and the Kitab al-Asrar (Book of Secrets) of Al-Razi. Some illustrations occur in the Latin translations of works which are attributed to Geber.[2]

Originally from Alembic - Wikipedia