Container for the Philosophers' Stone

Container for the Philosophers' Stone

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Credit: MIDDLE TEMPLE LIBRARY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Alchemy. Woodcut illustration of a vessel used to contain the Philosophers' Stone. This was the aim of alchemists, to create this mythical substance that was able to turn base metals such as lead into gold and was thought to be a rejuvenating elixir of life. The search for a means of creating this substance was termed the 'Great Work'. The vessel carries many symbols associated with alchemy, such as the Sun and Moon, a raven and so on. This illustration first appeared in Alchymia by Andreas Libavius, printed at Frankfurt in 1606.

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Keywords: 1600s, 1606, 17th century, alchemical, alchemist, alchemy, alchymia, black, container, drawing, elixir, holder, illustration, imagined, immortality, libavius, life, monochrome, moon, mythical, philosophers, portrait, raven, rejuvenation, stone, sun, symbol, symbology, vertical, vessel, white, woodcut

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