For example, episomorphs of white potash alum and violet chrome alum, of white magnesium sulphate and green nickel sulphate, and of many other pairs of salts, have been obtained.
Magnesium sulphate (orthorhombic) takes up ferrous sulphate (monoclinic) to the extent of 19%, forming isomorphous orthorhombic crystals; ferrous sulphate, on the other hand, takes up magnesium sulphate to the extent of 54% to form monoclinic crystals.
By plotting the specific volumes of these mixed crystals as ordinates, it is found that they fall on two lines, the upper corresponding to the orthorhombic crystals, the lower to the monoclinic. From this we may conclude that these salts are isodimorphous: the upper line represents isomorphous crystals of stable orthorhombic magnesium sulphate and unstable orthorhombic ferrous sulphate, the lower line isomor phous crystals of stable monoclinic ferrous sulphate and unstable monoclinic magnesium sulphate.
The treatment is the prompt use of emetics, or the stomach should be washed out, and large doses of sodium or magnesium sulphate given in order to form an insoluble sulphate.
There must be considerable dissociation of molecules, and as a first approximation it may be taken that of io molecules of most of the components about 9 (or in the case of magnesium sulphate 5) have been separated into their ions, and that it is only during slow concentration as in a natural saline that the ions combine to produce the various salts in the proportions set out in the above table.