Iron gall ink is generally made from an iron
(II) compound, and an aqueous acid. The iron
compound is usually iron sulfate
(FeSO4) and the acid is usually
tannic acid, extracted from various plant
sources, although there are many recipes to make
The full chemical composition of the ink used
by Leonardo is probably fairly complex, given
that it was made from quite a few ingredients.
The important chemicals are
This website discusses iron gall ink in
The website summarizes the ingredients, “Iron
gall ink is primarily made from tannin (most
often extracted from galls), vitriol (iron
sulfate), gum, and water.”
I do not know Italian, so this is the best
translation I could come up with (un-translated
words are in italics). It appears to be a
specific recipe for making iron gall ink.
Tartar, powder and apples zuchero much of one as
the other limbic distila to: the effectiveness
lentigine the first, second, and by the hair of
blacks yellows, and in the wet this Florentine
then you wash and dry the head, and dry and wet
A pound of letargirio pionbo, 2 pounds of
mortar alive, 3 ounces of gall, candied walnut
green or seche 6 ounces, aseto strong bocali 6:
bolire ago slow fire for half an hour, and felt
as cola and warm, and co 'water wet this hair
Forster III 39r
I am afraid I could not come up with a
reasonable translation of this one.
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