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Pimpinella

seeds, wire, pin and pins

PIMPINELLA, in botany, burnet saal /rage, a genus of the Pentandria Digynia chtss and order. Natural order of Um bellate, or Umbelliferat. Essential cha racter : petals bent in ; stigma subglobu lar ; fruit ovate, oblong. There are nine species, among which we shall notice the P. anisum, anise ; it has an annual root, producing a stem a foot and a half in height, dividing into several branches, having n:trrow leaves on them, cut into three or four narrow segments ; umbels large and loose, on long peduncles : flowers small, yellowish white ; seeds ob long, swelling, possessing an aromatic scent, and a pleasant warm, taste : in dis Ciliation with water, three pounds of them yield an ounce of essential oil, which con geals into a butyraceous white concrete, even when the air is not sensibly cold ; these seeds also yield an oil, by expres sion, of a greenish colour and grateful taste, strongly impregnated with the fla vour of the seeds. It is a native of Egypt ; it is cultivated in Malta and Spain, whence the seeds are annually imported into England.

PIN, in commerce, a little necessary implement made of brass-wire, used Chiefly by the women in adjusting their dress. The perfection of pins consists in the stiffness of the wire and its white ness, in the heads being well turned, and in the fineness of the points. The

London pointing and whitening are in most repute, because our pinmakers, in pointing, use two steel mills, the first of which forms the point, and the latter takes of all irregularities, and renders it smooth, and as it were polished ; and in whitening, they use block-tin granulat ed: whereas in other countries they are said to use a mixture of tin, lead, and quicksilver ; which not only whitens worse than the former, but is also dange rous, on account of the ill quality of that mixture, which renders a puncture nith a pin thus whitened somewhat difficult to be cured. The consumption of pins is incredible, and there is no commodity sold cheaper. The number of hands employed in this manufacture is very great, each pin passing through the hands of six different workmen, between the drawing of the brass wire and the stick in of the pin in the paper.

Pins are sometimes made of iron wire, rendered black by a varnish of linseed oil, with lamp-black, which the brass wire would not receive : these are designed for the use of persons in Mourning, though not universally approved.