Paracelsus, 16th Century Swiss alchemist

Paracelsus, 16th Century Swiss alchemist

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Credit: CCI ARCHIVES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Paracelsus (1493-1541). 1540 French engraving of the 16th Century Swiss German alchemist Paracelsus. Born Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim, he renamed himself Paracelsus (better than the Roman physician Celsus). Paracelsus travelled widely, absorbing the medical knowledge of many cultures. He advocated that physicians should not interfere with natural healing processes, and that pharmacists should be careful to control doses of drugs. He also tried to find a magical medicine or elixir of life. Paracelsianism was based on his theories.

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