Alchemy discussion forum Home

 Moderated by: alchemyd  
AuthorPost
Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
I am researching the use of catoptrical methods (the use of lenses, mirrors and optical devices to focus or direct light) in alchemy, part of a PhD. I would be particularly interested in unearthing illustrations of practical catoptrics relating to this. This is directly related to the use of the emanations of the sun, moon and stars within alchemy, which certainly interests me, though I am more specifically looking for images and texts that detail methods in which light is mediated through some kind of practical optical apparatus, mirror, or lens.

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
Perhaps I should also outline where I am already with this, and the questions I already arising, to save duplicating content:

I have found several very interesting illustrations from Athanasius Kircher Ars Magna Lucis (1646), though I am not sure how many of these relate to alchemy and how many rate to more general non-alchemical optical theory.
http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.com/2008/09/ars-magna-lucis-et-umbrae.html

Does anyone know of a translation of Kircher's text to put these images in proper context? I have not yet visited an original. There is another very good example of solar distillation by means of a focussing mirror in Kircher's later Mundus subterraneus (1665), which I believe Adam has a version of on this site.

I note also the illustration of the lens focussing beams from the moon in Chymischer Monden-schein, (1739), which Adam has put on this site. I should be interested to know more about the text/context of this work, if anyone can fill me in.
http://www.alchemydiscussion.com/view_topic.php?id=45&forum_id=2

There are also reproductions of John Dee's optical diagrams (from De Speculis comburentibus) in Urszula Szulakowska's book The Alchemy of Light, which includes also some illustrations of distillation by direct sunlight (Andreas Orthelius, Gimabattista della Porta, Robert Fludd). This useful book covers in some depth the concerns of Khunrath, Fludd, Maier and Dee in relation to light.

I am aware (from this forum) that there are 'four pen illustrations' within a text called Zweyte Silentium Dei by Johann Arndt (Mellon MS 136, Yale). I am trying to track this down through Yale, but has anyone actually seen this manuscript?

In a related post Stanislas Klossowski de Rola said that the above text is actually a later copy of "Arndt's "Zweytes Silentium Dei in des Konigs Salomonis des Weisen paradiessischen Lustgarten" dated 18-25 December 1798" which contains a full page illustration on page 23. Does anyone know where this earlier manuscript lives? Does anyone know also how these texts relate to the various versions of the Arcana Divina - in one post I read, it was suggested they are very similar in content?

One post mentioned looking at Libavius' Alchymia (1606) for illustrations of mirrors and magnifying lenses, but I have not yet found any images related to optics, at least not online.

I have also been recommended "Secret Doors of the Earth" by Jacques Bergier for a modern take on 'solar alchemy'.

I apologise for the lengthy message and for so many questions all in one post. I thought it worth outlining where I am starting from. Any advice or thoughts most welcome.

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
A very warm welcome Richard.

Chymische Monden-Schein can be read/downloaded from Dresden here:
http://www.slub-dresden.de/sammlungen/digitale-sammlungen/werkansicht/cache.off?tx_dlf[id]=51615

or from here:

http://books.google.com/books?id=dGg6AAAAcAAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=%22chymischer+mondenschein%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=dT48T8rNEMnC0QWt3-1s&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

I do not know of any translations of Kircher's Ars Magna. The original can be consulted here:

http://echo.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/ECHOdocuViewfull?mode=imagepath&url=/mpiwg/online/permanent/einstein_exhibition/sources/5G6UYVGT/pageimg&viewMode=images

"Mundus subterraneus" text and translation here:
http://spellbook.info/prime/spellbook/files/mundus-subterraneus/

Please do not overlook the Arab perspective:
http://www.levity.com/alchemy/islam17.html

This might be useful (including correspondence project):
http://www.stanford.edu/group/kircher/cgi-bin/site/


I'm sure our resident bibliographer Alan Pritchard will be intrigued and able to help. I will of course chip in anything else I come across in my browsing. Best of luck with your researches anyway and we look forward to saluting Dr. Ashrowan in due course :)

Alexander Guthrie Stewart
Member
 

Joined: Sat Feb 16th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 190
Status:  Offline
Interesting.  A bit later than my interest, although I can't recall seeing anything like this in medieval or into Tudor times. 

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Alexander Guthrie Stewart wrote:
Interesting.  A bit later than my interest, although I can't recall seeing anything like this in medieval or into Tudor times. 

Was Roger Bacon into this?

Alan Pritchard
Guest
 

Joined: 
Location:  
Posts: 
Status:  Offline
"I'm sure our resident bibliographer Alan Pritchard will be intrigued and able to help"

I have extracted from my database anything with the string 'optic' in the title, annotation, call number, additional subject headings. I have removed any obvious false drops such as 'Coptic', and the list will include quite a lot of material relating to Newton's optics.

I hope that amongst the dross, you may find some nuggets of gold.

Alan

Attachment: Opticsdoc.zip (Downloaded 1553 times)

Alexander Guthrie Stewart
Member
 

Joined: Sat Feb 16th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 190
Status:  Offline
Bacon was certainly into optical stuff, although I read that he took a lot of it from Arabic sources.  See the section on Optical science in the Opus MAjus, but I don't  recall seeing any mention of alchemy in that section.  Unfortunately I havn't been able to get a translation of the opus tertius into English, my Latin is nearly non-existent despite trying to learn some. 

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Alexander Guthrie Stewart wrote:
Bacon was certainly into optical stuff, although I read that he took a lot of it from Arabic sources.  See the section on Optical science in the Opus MAjus, but I don't  recall seeing any mention of alchemy in that section.  Unfortunately I havn't been able to get a translation of the opus tertius into English, my Latin is nearly non-existent despite trying to learn some. 

There seem to be some extracts from it translated in this book:

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Scientific-Achievement-of-the-Middle-Ages/Richard-C-Dales/e/9780812210576

It really is extraordinary how many important Latin texts have not been made available in other languages.

Alexander Guthrie Stewart
Member
 

Joined: Sat Feb 16th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 190
Status:  Offline
It isn't quite what you are after, but the EETS "Book of the Quintessence", being a 1460/70's translation of Rupescissa's book of the same name, mentions the use of the heat of the sun on page 9 for the making of quintessence of gold.  You put calcined gold and strong vinegar or purified urine in your glass vessel, and put it in strong sunshine in summer and collecte the oil which rises to the surface.

No lenses I am afraid, but it might have helped inspire future alchemists.  The connection between the sun and calcined gold is obvious.   

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
I assume you have the common examples of this.

Here is one from Le Faivre

Attached Image (viewed 2776 times):

le Faivre_8.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
And from the English translation

Attached Image (viewed 2738 times):

lefevre1970-2.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
The well known engraving from Kircher

Attached Image (viewed 2983 times):

Kircher.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
I seem to recall  that there are a number of such images in the emblem literature.

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Engraving from Christian Friedrich Sendimir von Siebenstern Chymischer Monden-schein, Frankfurt, 1739.

Attached Image (viewed 2539 times):

A159.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Engraved frontispiece from Giambattista della Porta, Magiae naturalis libri vigenti, Leiden 1644.

Attached Image (viewed 2421 times):

A191.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Engraving from work of Athanasius Kircher, 17th century.

Attached Image (viewed 2477 times):

A284.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Image from Fludd Amphitheatrum

Attached Image (viewed 2139 times):

Image15.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Image from Fludd Philosophia Sacra

Attached Image (viewed 2221 times):

Image26.jpg

Last edited on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 02:26 pm by adammclean

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Related images from Fludd's Optics in Utriusque cosmi historia..


Attached Image (viewed 2467 times):

Fotothek_df_tg_0006311_Optik_^_Reflexion_^_Spiegel.jpg

Last edited on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 02:32 pm by adammclean

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Another from  Fludd's Optics in Utriusque cosmi historia..

Attached Image (viewed 2420 times):

Fotothek_df_tg_0006312_Optik_^_Reflexion_^_Spiegel.jpg

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
This is the frontispiece from the "Oculum hoc est: fundamentum opticum..." of the Jesuit astronomer Christoph Scheiner, printed in Innsbruck in 1619.

To me it has a distinct alchemical feel to it, or am I reading too much into it?

Attached Image (viewed 2382 times):

peacock optics.jpg

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
There are several images here that I have not in fact seen before - many thanks. And thank you all also for the very helpful posts, which have opened out some lines of enquiry that will take some time to follow through.

I wanted to ask if anyone has any idea quite what is going on in the attached catoptrical image from Athansius Kircher Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae 1664, p 889.

It seems distinctly alchemical. I have transcribed the Latin from the page that describes this catoptrical device here, but I personally cannot make much sense of it. Is anyone here fluent enough with Latin to offer up the general sense of it?

Here's the page transcript:

*****************
Magia Catoptrica

Problema V

Statuam construere, que ad or tum Solis, et singulis horis consequentibus, Sole percussa prodigiosum sinum excitet.
Vide fig. 3 Iconismi 31.

De hisce statuis fuse tractabitur in Mechanica nostra Hieroglyphica, quare hoc loco fabricum statue tantum obiter at paucis describemus, ne quidquam curiosarum rerum in hac Arte nostra Magna omisisse videamur.

Fiat cista quaedam ex plumbo, vel alio quouis metallo fignata literis ABCDEF, vt 3. Figura docet, quatuor palmorum longitudinis; latitudinis altitudis que palmi vnius. In hac ¼ pars BEFJ, diaphragmate ELB dirimatur, per quod siphon ELB, inflexus ducatur. Huic vasi statua Memnonia eo habitu, et situ qua figura MP refert, imponatur. Porro ex huius vasis interiori superioris lateris superficie tres deducantut syphones ; B in corpus colucris Z, alter sistulam MN referat. Syphon tertius sit OP, qui per corpus flatuae deducatur in os, et oculos. Vas vero ADLE, suo affario platismatioque 1 instructum sit, cuius pes per fundum vasis in aquam viuam deducatur; vas autem ita sit vndique claufum, vt ne minimum quidem aeris exhalere posit; in vasis superiorilatere duo hemisphaeria G, et H, imponantur, quorum concaus, cum concauo vasis ABKL, cotinuenture. His rite peractis, ita machinum animabis; Machina prius ad tertiam partem replete humore, expones Soli, quae mox vbi radios senserit, in hemisphearia G, et H illapsos, vehementer interiorem aerem rarefaciet, hic consequenter aqua premet, quae pressa, cum aliunde non posit, per E syphonem inflexum sese insinuabit in vas N, ibique latentem aerem fumma viper B,O,N, syphones expellent, atque in Z quidem volucris fibilum, in M sonum animalis, in P vero et oculos mouebit factitios, et ad minitandum aptos, industriose in ertos, lingua quoque inflatum extra os prottudet, mirum dictu spectaculum. Porro Sole recedente aer in vase AB condensatus cum minorem locum requirat, in auxilium nouam aquam per affarium I attractam aduocabir, quem in recedentis locum substituat, aqua vero vasis N, per epistomium I. vacuata, nona parabit spectacula.

Si itaque huiusmodi prodigiosum sonum singulis horis exhibere veils: Machina in centro X figurae II. ita applicabitur, vt vtrumuis G, vel H, hemisphaerium X centro respondeat, et Sol globulos horatios crystallinos transiens singulis horis, ardenti foco suo G, vel H, in momento calefaciet, quam calefactionem necessario quoque intensus sonantis statuae effectus consequetur. Sole vero a globulo crystallino recedente, c effante que; et sic duodecies statua de die sonabit, et quasi praeconem horarium; fumma audientum admiratione aget; critique hoc spectaculum perpetum. Verum qua ratione huic machinae cocem humanae proximum, indere possimus, alibi susius declarabitur; vnde, qua ratione Solis luce haec machina animari posit, hic obiter tantum insinuasse sufficiat.

*****************

Attached Image (viewed 2343 times):

KircherP889.jpg

Carl Lavoie
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 25th, 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 215
Status:  Offline
.

I came upon this :

Taking our celestial power, i.e., by using the Niter, placed in a wide shallow glass container and set in front of our apparatus containing the magical Fire, and allowing the material to be calcined by the rays of astral radiation, so that the universal, solar essence will be carefully absorbed [...]

Then pour it on a flask and distill it over, which is easily carried out by our" Magical Machine" [magnifying lens] with "reverse distillation fire", which causes the material to be distilled over to the last drop and will no longer remain in the form in which it had been.[...]

Just as we, through the miracle of faith in God and reliance on His love, are able to accomplish many wonderful things, and are able to overcome all obstacles, so, too, are we able, through the Holy permissive Will of God, perform our magic and prepare our natural fire by means of the apparatus that we have just now introduced to this world in order to conquer it by the highest degree of completeness and perfection which we are able to accomplish, which would have been impossible without our having received the idea of the "natural fire" to help us. Especially since the value of such a natural phenomenon could require a thousand or more years to be adequately demonstrated and further developed, had its worth not been displayed through the knowledge of our apparatus.

Recall now, and cite it yourself, whether you or anyone else has at anytime heard or seen how ice, talc, pearls and plumed objects (especially since a very strong "materialistic fire" can always be produced) can be brought into a tree flow or to be melted, without putting over a fire. As you should know --- and no words of praise are necessary here --- that it is reasonable to have this property, that is, to possess our "natural fire", apart from which all this would be impossible, as we will show by subsequent demonstrations. We will now take, as an example to prove a point, a few valuable oriental pearls and place them in an open glass dish in front of our apparatus, so that the pearls will lie in the "magic natural fire", with its focus at the center of the dish.


 

But I'm not familiar with this text, supposedly the :

(Anon.; J. Arndt's Das zweyte Silentium Dei Weisen paradiesseschen Lustgarten?) ARCANA DIVINA.

Published by Dr. G. A. Fuchs in Collected Volumes 1885-1916 of the Provincial Library (Vol. 8, History of Literature, p. 417), and in the Annual Report of the Communal College of Komotau (Bohemia). from a Manuscript from the Ossegg Foundation.

http://www.rexresearch.com/alchemy3/arcdivin.htm

.

Last edited on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 09:24 pm by Carl Lavoie

Carl Lavoie
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 25th, 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 215
Status:  Offline
Not sure of the source of this. I'll try to find it.

Attached Image (viewed 1972 times):

loupe.jpg

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
Paul Ferguson wrote: This is the frontispiece from the "Oculum hoc est: fundamentum opticum..." of the Jesuit astronomer Christoph Scheiner, printed in Innsbruck in 1619.

To me it has a distinct alchemical feel to it, or am I reading too much into it?

It seems to be more about tracing the geometry of light rays to the eye, and through lenses. Although he has the clear idea of the camera obscura, I am not sure if he broke through to the modern conception of the eye as a camera.

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Richard Ashrowan wrote:

I wanted to ask if anyone has any idea quite what is going on in the attached catoptrical image from Athansius Kircher Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae 1664, p 889.

It seems distinctly alchemical. I have transcribed the Latin from the page that describes this catoptrical device here, but I personally cannot make much sense of it. Is anyone here fluent enough with Latin to offer up the general sense of it?




Well here's my best effort in a rather chaotic working-week.

Nothing to do with alchemy but great fun even so :)


Catoptric Magic.

Problem V.

To construct a statue which makes an impressive sound at sunrise and at each individual hour thereafter when the Sun's rays alight upon it (see fig. 3 of illustration-sheet 31).

The subject of these statues will be dealt with at greater length in our work “Mechanica Hieroglyphica.” Here we shall content ourselves with describing the construction of the statue in a few words, as we do not wish to appear to have omitted any curiosities from the present work, which is after all our “Ars Magna.”
Let a box be constructed of lead or of any other metal as indicated by the letters ABCDEF, as shown in fig. 3. This box should be four spans [1 span = approx. 4 inches] in length, and one span in both width and height. In this box a quarter-part as indicated by the letters BEFL should be separated by a partition ELB, through which a curved siphon ELB [sic] should be introduced. Onto this apparatus the Memnonian statue [http://egyptsites.wordpress.com/2009/02/10/the-colossi-of-memnon/] in its usual garb and stance should be placed as shown in fig. MP. From the interior surface of the upper side of this apparatus three siphons should be drawn out: B, which leads into the winged[?] body Z; a second siphon carrying back the pipe MN; and a third siphon OP, which is drawn through the body of the statue to the mouth and eyes. The vessel ADLE should be fitted out with its assarium valve [ http://books.google.com/books?id=l9qBdzRz6SgC&pg=PA77&lpg=PA77&dq=assarium&source=bl&ots=TI5je2k_1b&sig=U0weA37tTB_8TuikDFZHmMADke8&hl=en&sa=X&ei=FBVGT-HyK8qp8AOP-cSTDg&ved=0CEgQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q=assarium&f=false]and its platismatio [small lateral door?] I, the foot of which should be drawn through the bottom of the vessel into some aqua viva. This construction ensures that the vessel is completely sealed, so that the least amount of air can escape. In the upper surface of the apparatus there should be placed two hemispheres G and H, the concavities of which should be continuous with the concavity of vessel ABKL.
After you have performed this procedure correctly, set the Machine to work as follows. Expose the Machine, which has previously been one-third filled, to the Sun. This will soon powerfully rarify the air inside the Machine when its rays alight upon the Machine's hemispheres G and H. This brings the water under pressure. The pressurised water, since it has nowhere to escape to, will infiltrate curved siphon E and pass into vessel N, where it will expel the latent air with the greatest force through siphons B, O and N and cause in Z a rapid hissing noise, and in M an animal-like sound, and in P will move the artificial eyes and, if they have been carefully inserted, will make them able to inspire fear. It will also cause the tongue to protrude from the mouth – a truly wonderful sight! Then, as the Sun recedes, the air in vessel AB, which will be condensed since it will now require less space, will call upon the services of some new water, drawn through assarium valve I, which will take the place of the receding water. The water evacuated through stopper L will produce new [typo for 'nova'?] marvels.
If you want to produce an impressive sound of this kind at the individual hours then the Machine should be so deployed in the centre X of fig. II that either hemisphere G or H will respond to X in the centre, and the Sun, passing over at the individual hours the crystalline globules which mark the time will, with its burning focus, heat up G or H at that moment, which heating of necessity will cause the statue to produce intense sound-effects. As the Sun recedes from each crystalline globule, and the heat is correspondingly reduced, the effects mentioned will also cease, until the Sun illuminates another globule, and so twelve times a day the statue will resound and will serve as a sort of Herald of the Hours. It will perform its various tricks to the greatest admiration of those who hear it and will be a perpetual marvel.
By the same mechanism we can actually endow the Machine with a voice similar to that of a human being, a subject which will be described at length elsewhere. And so, by this mechanism this machine can be activated by the Sun's rays, and this shall suffice as an incidental account of the subject.

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
Paul - our dear Mr Kircher certainly liked his toys. Many thanks for the excellent translation... as you say, it is a very funny device indeed!

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
Carl Lavoie wrote:
Not sure of the source of this. I'll try to find it.

Seems to come from this site:
http://herve.delboy.perso.sfr.fr/niepce_chevreul.html
Credited to "mss. M79.2 BPH Amsterdam" which I can't find - I assume it must be from the Amsterdam BPH Ritman Library - I have emailed them to find out.

I have attached another image I haven't seen before, from the same website, also only credited to an 'alchemical manuscript' BPH, Amsterdam. I understand the BPH/Ritman has recently reopened after a year of closure.

Attached Image (viewed 2022 times):

verre_cendre.jpg

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
adammclean wrote:
I assume you have the common examples of this.

Here is one from Le Faivre


Adam - have you a bibliographical reference for this image and it's english translation version?

Richard Ashrowan
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 15th, 2012
Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Posts: 9
Status:  Offline
Richard Ashrowan wrote:
Carl Lavoie wrote:
Not sure of the source of this. I'll try to find it.

I now have some further information on this image - it is no longer at the Ritman Library, but at the KB, National Library of the Netherlands, shelfmark "BPH 209 a - b (212)".

Here is what a librarian at KB has to say about it. Can anyone translate the latin? Or offer any other perspective on the possible origin of this manuscript. It would be a help:

*********
It is an 18th century manucript in two volumes. No author is known.

Part II ( "BPH 209-b (212)") contains between the (in ink numbered)
pages 65 to 69 several illustrations with a preceding 'titlepage' on which is written in Latin: "Chemia Symbolica / Spectans / Ad sequens
manuscriptum chemicum'. On p. 69 a title reads: 'Copia / Secundi Manuscripti Chemico - ma / gici, / Quod in Monasterio ad S. Crucem conservatur, / mihique conussum fuit Ao. 1748 / Complectitur hoc manuscriptum nonnulla / scitu digna, et que in praxi succedere / videntur; nonnulla vulgari chemicorum / more elevata, et rebis magis quam praxi / commendata; denique nonnulla superstitiosa / et magic de campana ad vorandos spiritus, / de speculo magico deito Anglecano, que postre- / ma (: describi enim ista nolui : ) hic omissa sunt." / NB.
Figurae praecedentes ad / hoc scriptum pertinent."

I describe for you the illustrations:

1. Hermes on a mountain, a star above him.
2. The rays of the sun reach through a magnifying glass (held by a hand) a bowl on a pedestal
3. The rays of the sun reach through a glass mounted on a sort of tripod into an instrument that resembles a bulb
4. is your image
5. the rays of the sun now reaching two retorts

Following seven images more with Hermes, Neptune, lions etc. but no instruments.

**********

Many thanks.

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Here's my go at the Latin:

“Symbolic chemistry”, which faces the following chemical manuscript.

On page 69 a title reads: “A copy of the second manuscript of chemical magic, the original of which is preserved at the Holy Cross Monastery, and which was handed over to me ['concessum'?] in 1748. This manuscript contains some things that are worth knowing and which seem to succeed in practice; certain other matters which are raised in the more commonplace manner of the chemists [i.e. presumably pure chemistry rather than alchemy]; matters that might be commended more to theory [rebus??] than to practice; and, finally, some rural superstitions and magic spells for devouring souls [sic], as well as something about the magic mirror known as the “English mirror”, and which latter matters are here omitted (for I did not wish to describe them).

NB. The preceding illustrations relate to this manuscript.

-----------------------------------------

A useful first step might be to try and identify the Holy Cross Monastery referred to. Is it the one in Augsburg that Mozart was associated with or this one perhaps?:
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kloster_Heilig_Kreuz_(Donauw%C3%B6rth)

Last edited on Wed Feb 29th, 2012 09:44 pm by Paul Ferguson

adammclean
Member


Joined: Fri Sep 14th, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 604
Status:  Offline
New book in Italian dealing with this subject

 

http://www.ilmessaggioritrovato.it/newsite/DivoSole.asp

Carl Lavoie
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 25th, 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 215
Status:  Offline
.

What would be the translation of the epigram on the Chymischer Monden-Schein fold-out plate?

 

http://vd18.de/de-slub-vd18/content/pageview/41750251

.

Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Carl Lavoie wrote:
.

What would be the translation of the epigram on the Chymischer Monden-Schein fold-out plate?

 

http://vd18.de/de-slub-vd18/content/pageview/41750251

.


Well here's my very tentative effort:

Der Athem Gottes ists, der Luft und Leben giebt.
The breath of God it is that provides air and life.

Der Sonn und Mondenschein, ein jeder Weiser liebt,
The Sunshine and Moonlight every wise man loves,

Das Wesen so daraus, mit weyl, der Weise machet,
That they meanwhile make the Essence of the Wise from the breath of God

Hat Adam schon gewüst, als Eva ihn anlachet.
Adam already knew when Eve smiled at him.



Eins in allen
One in all

Alles in eins
All in one

Johann Plattner
Member


Joined: Sat Feb 23rd, 2008
Location: Germany
Posts: 40
Status:  Offline
Paul Ferguson wrote: Das Wesen so daraus, mit weyl, der Weise machet,
That they meanwhile make the Essence of the Wise from the breath of God
Another possibility  for this passage might be:

The essence out of it, makes with a little while the Wise.



Paul Ferguson
Member


Joined: Fri Feb 15th, 2008
Location:  
Posts: 1506
Status:  Offline
Johann Plattner wrote:
Paul Ferguson wrote: Das Wesen so daraus, mit weyl, der Weise machet,
That they meanwhile make the Essence of the Wise from the breath of God
Another possibility  for this passage might be:

The essence out of it, makes with a little while the Wise.





Thanks Johann.

I wonder if there is an echo of Angelus Silesius:

208. Deß Weisen Goldmachung.
Der Weise machet Gold / verändert Ertz und Stein /
Wann er die Tugend pflantzt / und unß macht Englisch seyn.

http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/buch/3776/12

Johann Plattner
Member


Joined: Sat Feb 23rd, 2008
Location: Germany
Posts: 40
Status:  Offline
Paul Ferguson wrote: I wonder if there is an echo of Angelus Silesius:

208. Deß Weisen Goldmachung.
Der Weise machet Gold / verändert Ertz und Stein /
Wann er die Tugend pflantzt / und unß macht Englisch seyn.

http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/buch/3776/12
Maybe thus:
208. Of  the gold making of the Wise.
The Wise makes gold / changes ore and stone /
When he plants the virtuousness / and makes us to be angelic.

Carl Lavoie
Member
 

Joined: Wed Feb 25th, 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 215
Status:  Offline
.
An engraving from an XVIIIth century German edition of the Arcana divina, “With 10 folding sheets inserted, 9 of which contain pen-drawings of alchemical mirrors and other apparatus”.

http://archives.wellcome.ac.uk/DServe/dserve.exe?dsqIni=Dserve.ini&dsqApp=Archive&dsqCmd=show.tcl&dsqDb=Catalog&dsqSearch=((text)='alchemy')&dsqPos=181


.




Powered by WowBB 1.7 - Copyright © 2003-2006 Aycan Gulez