<chemistry> The act, process, or result (in the process of parting) of alloying a button of nearly pure gold with enough silver to reduce the fineness so as to allow acids to attack and remove all metals except the gold.

Synonyms: inquartation. Compare Parting.

Origin: L. Quartus the fourth: cf. F. Quartation. So called because usually enough silver is added to make the amount of gold in the alloyed button about one fourth.

(01 Mar 1998)

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