I he so-called sciences of magic, astrology and alchemy still flourish.
It is curious that although we possess a certain number of works on alchemy written in Arabic, and also many Latin treatises that profess to be translated from Arabic, yet in no case is the existence known of both the Arabic and the Latin version.
But the further development of alchemy took place in the West rather than in the East.
In this doubtless he derived much advantage from his knowledge of chemistry, though the science was as yet not disentangled from the secret traditions of alchemy, and was often mixed up with imposture.
Chemistry proper was not understood, but Arabian writings on alchemy led Europe to it later.
The Development of Chemistry in Recent Times appeared in 1871-1874, and in 1886 he published a work in two volumes on Alchemy in Ancient and Modern Times.
So far as the numerous works are concerned it is evident that the writers who posed as Rosicrucians were moral and religious reformers, and utilized the technicalities of chemistry (alchemy), and the sciences.
He wrote at least one treatise on alchemy, but several others have been falsely attributed to him.
Having at last got into trouble with the authorities he fled from Sicily, and visited in succession Greece, Egypt, Arabia, Persia, Rhodes - where he took lessons in alchemy and the cognate sciences from the Greek Althotas - and Malta.
After that, apparently, logic was to be treated; then, possibly, mathematics and physics; then speculative alchemy and experimental science.
In the narrow sense of the word, alchemy is the pretended art of making gold and silver, or transmuting the base metals into the noble ones.
Alchemy in this sense is merely an early phase of the development of systematic chemistry; in Liebig's words, it was " never at any time anything different from chemistry."
The other view traces it to khem or khame, hieroglyph khmi, which denotes black earth as opposed to barren sand, and occurs in Plutarch as XvAda; on this derivation alchemy is explained as meaning the " Egyptian art."
Another legend, also to be found in Arabic sources, asserts that alchemy was revealed by God to Moses and Aaron.
Thus, in the treatise known as Physica et Mystica and falsely ascribed to Democritus (such false attributions are a constant feature of the literature of alchemy), various receipts are given for colouring and gilding metals, but the conception of transmutation does not occur.
The second group consists of a number of treatises professing to be written by Jaber, celebrated in Latin alchemy as Geber.
The Arabic chroniclers record the names of many other writers on alchemy, among the most famous being Rhazes and Avicenna.
Berthelot, Les Origines de l'alchimie (1885); Collection des anciens alchimistes grecs (text and translation, 3 vols., 1887-1888); Introduction a l'etude de la chimie des anciens et du moyen age (1889); La Chimie au moyen age (text and translation of Syriac and Arabic treatises on alchemy, 3 vols., 1893).
Much bibliographical and other information about the later writers on alchemy is contained in Bibliotheca Chemica (2 vols., Glasgow, 1906), a catalogue by John Ferguson of the books in the collection of James Young of Kelly (printed for private distribution).
Xvueia; for derivation see Alchemy), the natural science which has for its province the study of the composition of substances.
Though he lived in an atmosphere of alchemy, he derided the notion of the alkahest or universal solvent, and denounced the deceptions of the adepts who pretended to effect the transmutation of metals; but he believed mercury to be a constituent of all metals and heavy minerals, though he held there was no proof of the presence of "sulphur comburens."
His scientific interests are attested by his letter to Hypatia in which occurs the earliest known reference to areometry, and by a work on alchemy in the form of a commentary on pseudo-Democritus.
Rudolph was a clever and cultured man, greatly interested in chemistry, alchemy, astronomy and astrology; he was a patron of Tycho Brahe and Kepler, and was himself something of a scholar and an artist.
Magic, astrology and alchemy - all the outgrowth of Neoplatonism - gave the first effectual stimulus to the observation of nature, and consequently to natural science, and in this way finally extinguished barren rationalism.
Chinese tradition ascribes to him special knowledge of herbs, of astrology, of alchemy and of medicine.
He pored over books on occult philosophy; he busied himself with alchemy and astrology.
Khalid contented himself with protesting; he was neither a politician nor a soldier, but a student of alchemy and astronomy; translations of Greek books have been ascribed to him (Jahiz, Bayan, i.
Homes as The Alchemy of Happiness (Albany, N.Y., 1873); the ethical work 0 Child, ed.
Among the Merchiston papers is a thin quarto volume in Robert Napier's writing containing a digest of the principles of alchemy; it is addressed to his son, and on the first leaf there are directions that it is to remain in his charter-chest and be kept secret except from a few.
The smaller works, chiefly on alchemy, are unimportant, and the dates of their composition cannot be ascertained.
But " alchemy " was something more than a particularly vain and deluded manifestation of the thirst for gold, as it is sometimes represented; in its wider and truer significance it stands for the chemistry of the middle ages.
Among the Alexandrian writers alchemy was designated as Xpvvoi TE Kai apyipou 7roc7Jvews TEXvn Oda Kai iepa or k7fc6TY] ï¿½7] iepa.
290 - an act which Gibbon styles the first authentic event in the history of alchemy (Decline and Fall, chap. xiii.).
But while there are thus some grounds for supposing that the idea of transmutation grew out of the practical receipts of Alexandrian Egypt, the alchemy which embraced it as a leading principle was also strongly affected by Eastern influences such as magic and astrology.
With the spread of their empire to Spain the Arabs took with them their knowledge of Greek medicine and science, including alchemy, and thence it passed, strengthened by the infusion of a certain Jewish element, to the nations of western Europe, through the medium of Latin translations.
The history of the alchemical period is treated in more detail in the article Alchemy, and of the iatrochemical in the article Medicine.
Berthelot, " alchemy rested partly on the industrial processes of the ancient Egyptians, partly on the speculative theories of the Greek philosophers, and partly on the mystical reveries of the Gnostics and Alexandrians."
A fantastic and elaborate doctrine of symbolism existed which comprised all nature; witchcraft, alchemy and medicine were its practical expressions.
As a Rosicrucian Wollner dabbled in alchemy and other mystic arts, but he also affected to be zealous for Christian orthodoxy, imperilled by Frederick II.'s patronage of "enlightenment," and a few months before Frederick's death wrote to his friend the Rosicrucian Johann Rudolph von Bischoffswerder (1741-1803) that his highest ambition was to be placed at the head of the religious department of the state "as an unworthy instrument in the hand of Ormesus" (the prince of Prussia's Rosicrucian name) "for the purpose of saving millions of souls from perdition and bringing back the whole country to the faith of Jesus Christ."
The name Geber has long been used to designate the author of a number of Latin treatises on alchemy, entitled Summa perfectionis magisterii, De investigatione perfectionis, De inventione veritatis, Liber fornacum, Testamentum Geberi Regis Indiae and Alchemia Geberi, and these writings were generally regarded as translations from the Arabic originals of Abu Abdallah Jaber ben Hayyam (Haiyan) ben Abdallah al-Kufi, who is supposed to have lived in the 8th or 9th century of the Christian era.
Berthelot's works on the history of alchemy and especially his Chimie au moyen age (3 vols., Paris, 1893), the third volume of which contains a French translation of Jaber's works together with the Arabic text.
The introduction of alchemy and mesmerism led to its dissolution in 1789, but its work was continued by the society " Pro fide et charitate," which existed from 1796 to 1820.
In January 1293 he reached Naples where tradition alleges that he studied alchemy; there appears to be no foundation for this story, and the treatises on alchemy which bear his name are all apocryphal.'
The academies of the day represented the prevailing intellectual tendency of Renaissance humanism, namely, an absorbing enthusiasm for classic letters and for the transcendental speculations of Platonic and neo-Platonic mysticism, not unmixed with the traditions and practice of medieval alchemy, astrology and necromantics.
Tycho Brahe was from his fifteenth year devoted to astrology, and adjoining his observatory at Uranienburg the astronomerroyal of Denmark ha .d a laboratory built in order to study alchemy, and it was only a few years before his death that he finally abandoned astrology.
Several origins have been suggested for the word alchemy, and there seems to Alchemy.
But if the progress of physical science has not prevented the rehabilitation of much of ancient alchemy by the later researches into chemical change, and if psychology now finds a place for explanations of spiritualism and witchcraft which involve the admission of the empirical facts under a new theory (as in the case of the diviningrod, &c.), it is at least conceivable that some new synthesis might once more justify part at all events of ancient and medieval astromancy, to the extent of admitting the empirical facts where provable, and substituting for the supposed influence of the stars as such, some deeper theory which would be consistent with an application to other forms of prophecy, and thus might reconcile the possibility of dipping into futurity with certain interrelations of the universe, different indeed from those assumed by astrological theory, but underlying and explaining it.
The descent of alchemistical doctrine can thus be traced with fair continuity for a thousand years, from the Greeks of Alexandria down to the time when Latin alchemy was firmly established in the West, and began to be written of by historical authors like Albertus Magnus, Roger Bacon and Arnoldus Villanovanus in the 13th century.
Thus he says that the silver which has been changed into gold by the projection of the red elixir is not rendered resistant to the agents which affect silver but not gold, and Albertus Magnus in his De Mineralibus - the De Alchemia attributed to him is spurious - states that alchemy cannot change species but merely imitates them - for instance, colours a metal white to make it resemble silver or yellow to give it the appearance of gold.
But the most eager search of Arabian chemistry was the transmutation of metals, and the elixir of immortal health: the reason and the fortunes of thousands were evaporated in the crucibles of alchemy, and the consummation of the great work was promoted by the worthy aid of mystery, fable and superstition."
He published several pieces bearing on medicine, astrology and alchemy, and attacking the system of Paracelsus.