From the crucible of such inner turmoil come the various metals, soft or brittle, flawed or pure, precious or common, that determine the good runners, the great runners, and perhaps the former runners.
-- John L. Parker, Once a Runner
It was true that as one watched life in its curious crucible of pain and pleasure, one could not wear over one's face a mask of glass…
-- Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
Crucible stems from the Old French word croisol which referred to a night lamp.