How alchemists discovered phosphorous in piss

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Urine was also a good source for Saltpeter. This is where most early gunpowder got it’s Saltpeter from and for a +1 Blessing modifier to attack those that could afford it got saltpeter that was extracted from Catholic monks’ urine.


It’s all urine pee pee!

Did they change the article title? I liked the punny one.


Neat! Did you find this somewhere or make it yourself?

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It was the fault of my psychic projection. Mea tulpa.


Also, everyone should read Neal Stephenson’s The Baroque Cycle. Push through the first half of the first book - the remainder is well worth the effort.


It’s also a deadly weapon on its own…


Not always.


For anyone really curious about this episode in the history of alchemy and science, read The 13th Element: The Sordid Tale of Murder, Fire, and Phosphorus. It goes into some detail about the mental processes underlying the investigations of the alchemists, and questions but does not resolve whether this was the start of the chemistry as a science and its divergence from alchemy.

ETA: Whoa. The presenter’s name is Doctor Darcy Gentleman. Just. Whoa.

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Indeed. I’m sure everyone who’s read it knows what section you’re thinking of here.

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This was a plot point in Neal Stephenson’s “Baroque Cycle”…


Oh. I gave up. I thought the embroidery code was neat, but I just couldn’t make it through the long haul. So, I should try again?

Piss bags.

Piss bags I say!

If you’ve ever been to a Millwall football match.

Yes, try again. I tend to prefer audio books, so I can crochet and “read” at the same time. There were some passages that dragged, but somehow audio makes that easier for me. YMMV.

Also, one of the books has the clearest description of the financialization of society I’ve ever heard.

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Thanks! I am back to having a car commute and will give the audio books a try.

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Quick, to the BBS gif bank with that gem!

I do not know this Gif bank but you are welcome to my oeuvre.

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Oh, this is super-cool! Thanks for sharing.

Here, the BBS gif bank! You should contribute! Make sure you tag them!