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Old 01-17-2017, 11:01 PM
Frankthered Frankthered is offline
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What could it have been? If I had to guess, it was probably made by soaking a thick absorbent resin of some kind in an flammable liquid solution, maybe the greeks found a source of petroleum?

wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_fire
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Old 01-18-2017, 06:31 AM
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We'll probably never know just what the ingredients were but I've always thought that biblical pitch was used which is bitumen, asphalt or tar. The Greek name for the Dead Sea is Asphaltites and I believe that the Romans call it Lacus Asphaltites or Lake of Asphalt. In and around the Dead Sea area there are naturally occurring deposits of Asphalt, potash (fertilizer) and Sulfur (brimstone).

Just my Opinion.
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Old 01-18-2017, 04:16 PM
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Pitch and white phosphorus.

Just my opinion.
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Old 01-18-2017, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Frankthered View Post
What could it have been? If I had to guess, it was probably made by soaking a thick absorbent resin of some kind in an flammable liquid solution, maybe the greeks found a source of petroleum?

wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_fire
If we consider the primary source descriptions, it was:

1) Liquid, of unknown viscosity. We know this from both descriptions of its deployment, and the illustrations in illuminated manuscripts, which, though of dubious reliability on their own, certainly corroborate the written descriptions,

2) Self-igniting, likely through exposure to air, though possibly through contact with water. Modern scientists have theorized that the ignition might have been triggered by white phosphorus.

3) Likely organic in nature, owing to period conjectures of its contents, which almost exclusively cite organic contents, including urine (likely ammonia from urine), oils, and tats.

Neither the ancient Greeks of classical antiquity, nor their Roman and Byzantine successors, had discovered the basic premises of chemistry, so it was likely anecdotally discovered by mixtures the chemical consequences of they couldn't understand.
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Old 01-19-2017, 08:01 AM
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Where do you reckon they got the phosphorus?

If you mix something and it explodes in your face, it's magic. If you mix the same things a second time intending to get a bang, it's chemistry.
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Old 01-19-2017, 09:31 AM
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Where do you reckon they got the phosphorus?

If you mix something and it explodes in your face, it's magic. If you mix the same things a second time intending to get a bang, it's chemistry.
Yes and no. They may have made empirical measures of the ingredients and their natural results, but they did not understand the scientific chemical principles of the reactants, like periodicity, valence electrons, elements, compounds, etc. That is to say, they were accidentalists, not scientists.
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Old 01-19-2017, 10:31 AM
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Some are suggesting phosphorus as an ingredient, but from recorded historical records, phosphorus wasn't discovered/synthesised until the 1600's. However, its also a possibility the the ancients knew of a compilation of elements that also produced phosphorus as we know it today.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphorus
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Old 01-20-2017, 07:10 AM
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Yes and no. They may have made empirical measures of the ingredients and their natural results, but they did not understand the scientific chemical principles of the reactants, like periodicity, valence electrons, elements, compounds, etc. That is to say, they were accidentalists, not scientists.
That's a good one, HD. You started my day with a smile. When I head back to the doc today to see if I'm in for another surgery, I'm going to think about that one, bud.
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Old 01-20-2017, 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Frankthered View Post
Some are suggesting phosphorus as an ingredient, but from recorded historical records, phosphorus wasn't discovered/synthesised until the 1600's. However, its also a possibility the the ancients knew of a compilation of elements that also produced phosphorus as we know it today.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphorus
I once saw a tv show on the Aztecs or the Incas or the Toltecs or someone whose civilization died and was buried in a jungle. They identified lines on satellite pics that turned out to be roads and followed the lines to new-found constructions. The one guy talking goes on about how they moved huge rocks and materials and built these massive buildings....and all without discovering the wheel. And at the same time, another guy identified the ancient two parallel line "roads" they had followed as "cart tracks".

Makes one wonder, doesn't it?
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Old 01-21-2017, 01:51 PM
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I once saw a tv show on the Aztecs or the Incas or the Toltecs or someone whose civilization died and was buried in a jungle. They identified lines on satellite pics that turned out to be roads and followed the lines to new-found constructions. The one guy talking goes on about how they moved huge rocks and materials and built these massive buildings....and all without discovering the wheel. And at the same time, another guy identified the ancient two parallel line "roads" they had followed as "cart tracks".

Makes one wonder, doesn't it?
Sure does. Saw a show once on about a similar topic, except it was about an ancient battle in India. Long story short, on the site of where this battle purportedly happened thousands of years ago, a type of radiation produces as a result of detonating an atomic bomb, was present at this site.

Its said the battle involved the hindu deities.
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Old 01-24-2017, 04:07 PM
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I never knew fire could be from other nations. I always thought they were all American.
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Old 01-24-2017, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Frankthered View Post
Some are suggesting phosphorus as an ingredient, but from recorded historical records, phosphorus wasn't discovered/synthesised until the 1600's. However, its also a possibility the the ancients knew of a compilation of elements that also produced phosphorus as we know it today.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphorus
All of the reactants needed to produce P4 vapor are present in many traditional smithing operations in North Africa. If silica sand and phosphor rock are used to insulate a forge, white phosphorus sublimes from the aggregate.

Do bear in mind that the "discovery" of elements refers to their formal isolation and naming, but a great many were used before their nature was understood.

That said, it would have been easier to simply ignite the inflammable fuel at the tip of the nozzle, like those flaming tailpipes so popular on hot rods in the movies.
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Old 01-31-2017, 09:15 AM
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Ive installed "flame tips" kits drudge, alcohol, tank, lines LP pump , with a coil, 2 wires and 2 spark plugs mounted in the exhaust. Last set i put on was a bike.

lots of those old processes for weapons were lost in the sands of time. generation dies out, for whatever reason, and the weapon is lost.
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Old 02-04-2017, 02:21 PM
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This has always puzzled me too.
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Old 02-04-2017, 05:00 PM
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Accidendalists!!!

That's a good one Drudge.

That's also humans. A lot of what we do is by chance. Then the lightbulb comes on and we try to repeat (or avoid) the result.

What's the difference between bread and beer if you think about it. Who was the genius that figured that out.
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Old 07-19-2019, 04:09 AM
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http://www.chemistryislife.com/the-c...-of-greek-fire

https://www.quora.com/Has-the-formul...een-discovered

http://alchemyathol.weebly.com/greek-fire.html
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