Of minerals containing this element mention may be made of cassiterite or tinstone, Sn02, tin pyrites, Cu 4 SnS 4 + (Fe,Zn) 2 SnS 4; the metal also occurs in some epidotes, and in company with columbium, tantalum and other metals.
Stannous sulphide, SnS, is obtained as a lead-grey mass by heating tin with sulphur, and as a brown precipitate by adding sulphuretted hydrogen to a stannous solution; this is soluble in ammonium polysulphide, and dries to a black powder.
Stannic sulphide, SnS 2, is obtained by heating a mixture of tin (or, better, tin amalgam), sulphur and sal-ammoniac in proper proportions in the beautiful form of aurum musivum (mosaic gold) - a solid consisting of golden yellow, metallic lustrous scales, and used chiefly as a yellow "bronze" for plaster-of-Paris statuettes, &c. The yellow precipitate of stannic sulphide obtained by adding sulphuretted hydrogen to a stannic solution readily dissolves in solutions of the alkaline sulphides to form thiostannates of the formula M 2 SnS 31 the free acid, H2SnS3, may be obtained as an almost black powder by drying the yellow precipitate formed when hydrochloric acid is added to a solution of a thiostannate.
Stannous salt solutions yield a brown precipitate of SnS with sulphuretted hydrogen, which is insoluble in cold dilute acids and in real sulphide of ammonium, (NH 4) 2 S; but the yellow, or the colourless reagent on addition of sulphur, dissolves the precipitate as SnS 2 salt.
Stannic salt solutions give a yellow precipitate of SnS 2 with sulphuretted hydrogen, which is insoluble in cold dilute acids but readily soluble in sulphide of ammonium, and is re-precipitated therefrom as SnS2 on acidification.