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LA TUMBA DE SEMIRAMIS

Annimo
CAPITULO PRIMERO Del sujeto fsico de la Piedra de los Filsofos El comienzo de nuestra obra debe ser "el temor del Seor", y el fin "la caridad y el amor del prjimo". Por lo cual, antes de emprender esta obra divina, es necesario saber primero cul es el sujeto sobre el que debemos trabajar, pues, tal como el labrador en vano prepara la tierra, si no sabe de donde tomar la semilla que a ella debe lanzar, del mismo modo se labra intilmente el campo qumico si se ignora lo que debe sembrarse en l. Es sobre esto en particular, que hoy en da muchos se equivocan y caen en mil opiniones distintas que sera demasiado largo discutir aqu . Diremos, solamente , que mientras unos buscan su materia en el reino animal, en lugares como la sangre, el esperma, el sudor, la orina, los cabellos, los excrementos, los huesos, las serpientes, los sapos y las araas, otros se afanan vanamente en el vegetal y, particularmente, sobre el vino con el que imaginan hacer el Magisterio; y an siendo cierto que en cada uno de estos reinos, pueden encontrares grandes remedios para la salud, sobre todo en el hombre y en el vino donde se encuentran reunidas todas las virtudes de los animales y de los vegetales, tal como las de los minerales se encuentran en el Oro, sin embargo, ninguno de los Adeptos jams pens hacer con ellos la gran Obra. De lo cual se deduce, que en el reino mineral es donde debe buscarse nuestra materia, pero aqu es donde uno se encuentra dividido entre tantas opiniones distintas, que sin un Edipo es completamente imposible vencer todos esos obstculos; unos pretenden que debe sacarse de los minerales y los dems de los medios minerales, como la sal, el nitro, el alumbre y otros parecidos, pero es en vano, ya que no hay en ellos ninguna plata viva en la que puedan ser resueltos, y aqu est el primer cenagal en que nos camos en el tiempo de nuestra ignorancia. Queda claro que nicamente los metales son el sujeto fsico de nuestra piedra bendita, pero an aqu se encuentra una doble senda, pues entre los metales unos son perfectos y otros imperfectos. Para abreviar, diremos que todos los metales, principalmente aquellos que aunque imperfectos no han sufrido desunin por medio de una depuracin ntima de su mancha original (lo cual es muy difcil y casi imposible) pueden ser el sujeto de la Piedra; lo cual hizo decir a F1amel: "Algunos han trabajado sobre Jpiter, otros sobre Saturno, pero yo he trabajado sobre el Sol y lo he encontrado". Tambin en la Turba leemos: "que todos los metales puros o impuros son en el interior Sol, Luna y Mercurio, pero slo uno es el verdadero Sol, a saber, el que se extrae de ellos". Y el autor de EL SECRETO HERMTICO Can. XVI nos advierte que: "quien busca el arte de perfeccionar los metales imperfectos fuera de los metales mismos, camina en el error, ya que la especie metlica debe buscarse en la naturaleza de los metales, como en el hombre la del hombre, y en el buey la del buey". Y an en el Can. XVIII dice: "Los cuerpos perfectos estn dotados de una simiente ms perfecta; as bajo o la dura corteza de los metales ms perfectos, est oculta una simiente perfecta, que si alguien sabe extraer por una resolucin fsica, puede afirmar que se encuentra en la va real". Al igual FILALETEO en su entrada al Palacio Real Cap. XIX en que trata del progreso de la Obra en los primeros cuarenta das, dice: "Nuestro oro est en todos los metales, incluso en los vulgares, pero est mucho ms prximo en el oro y la plata". Sin embargo , aade este autor, "hay an un sujeto en el reino metlico de un admirable origen, en el cual nuestro oro est mucho ms prximo que en el oro y la plata vulgares, en tanto que uno sepa tomarlo a la hora de su nacimiento; y se funde en nuestro

Mercurio como hielo en agua .caliente". Pero sin detenernos ahora en los metales imperfectos, declaramos que los dos luminares perfectos, el Sol y la Luna o, dicho de otro modo, el oro y la plata son el sujeto fsico de la Piedra, y sta es la va que la mayor parte de los Filsofos han seguido con xito, siguiendo lo que ensea AUGUREL en el 2 libro de la Crisopea, en estos trminos: "Toma el metal purgado de todo mancha, en el centro del cual se encuentra retirado el espritu, y donde vive oculto bajo una dura corteza, esperando que una vez libre de sus ataduras pueda dejar su prisin para elevarse a los aires" . Igualmente, en la Crisopea libro I, dice: "En absoluto busques fuera los principios del oro, ya que en el oro est la semilla del oro, aunque muy escondida, y no puede obtenerse sin una larga labor". Adems Ramn Llull, este astro de la Filosofa espagrica, hablando de la dignidad de estos dos luminares, en su Codicilio pg. 28 dice: "Hay dos ms depurados que los otros, a saber el oro y la plata, sin los cuales nuestro Arte no puede realizarse; ya que en ellos se encuentra la pursima substancia del azufre perfectamente purificada por la naturaleza, y de estos dos cuerpos preparados con su azufre y su arsnico se extrae nuestra medicina, y sin ellos no puede hacerse". Y el Autor del libro titulado CLANGOR BUCCINAE: "Debes trabajar con discrecin y prudencia, ya que sin simiente no podr haber ni Sol ni Luna, y no puede ser til otra simiente o fermento que no sea el oro para el rojo y la plata para el blanco; dichos cuerpos previamente sutilizados con peso y medida, deben ser sembrados seguidamente a fin que se pudran y corrompan y que siendo destruida su primera forma se introduzca una mucho ms noble, lo cual se hace por medio de nuestra agua nica". De donde un cierto Annimo perfectamente concluye: "as como el fuego es principio de ignicin, el oro es principio de aurificacin, siendo el efecto tal como la causa, el hijo tal como el padre, el fruto tal como la semilla, engendrndose un hombre de un hombre y de un len un len". Pero alguien quizs me alegar que los Filsofos nos aseguran que nuestra materia es tal "que el pobre puede tenerla tanto como el rico y que Dios ha dado buscar este gran tesoro a todos los hombres, indistintamente, rehusando solamente este gran bien a aquel que se vuelve indigno por sus males sentimientos". Y Geber aade: "no es necesario en absoluto, que consumas tus bienes, ya que los principios de nuestro Arte se encuentran a bajo precio y debes saber que si para realizar el Magisterio nos fuese preciso el oro o algo muy caro, los pobres estaran obligados a abandonar esta obra admirable, es casi imprescindible que el artista yerre muchas veces, y el pobre despus de haber fallado ya no podra comenzar de nuevo". Y Lillum dice: "Esta piedra se adquiere a bajo precio y si los que la venden la conociesen bien, ya no la venderan a ningn precio, sino que la guardaran para s mismos". Y otro Annimo: "nuestros gastos no sobrepasan la cantidad de dos florines". Lo cual confirma Arnau de Vilanova en estos trminos: "ten por cierto que los gastos de nuestro nobilsimo Arte, no exceden el precio de dos escudos de oro en su primera compra, es decir, en su primera operacin". Y Geber: "Si dispensas tus bienes trabajando, no lo atribuyas a nosotros, sino a tu imprudencia, pues nuestra Ciencia no requiere grandes gastos". A esto respondemos que jams hemos negado que aparte del oro y la plata no existiera algn otro sujeto de menor precio, y es por esto que anteriormente hemos citado el testimonio de Filaleteo cuando dice: "Hay un sujeto de un admirable origen en el reino metlico...etc." Aunque muchos Filsofos quieren que se entienda dicho bajo precio, solamente en relacin a nuestro menstruo disolvente. Se dir an que Sendivogius en el Tratado XI dice que en nuestras operaciones no hemos de servirnos de "oro y de plata vulgares ya que estn muertos", a lo que nosotros respondemos concediendo que verdaderamente del oro y la plata vulgares tal como son, mientras estn muertos, no podra hacerse la piedra de los Filsofos, pero una vez estn revivificados y

reducidos a su primera materia seminal, es decir, vueltos semejantes al oro de los Filsofos, entonces no dan tan solo la simiente, sino que adems sirven de fermento, lo cual el Filsofo confirma con estas palabras: "Los presentes y los pasados no han hecho oro sino del oro, ni plata sino de la plata y entonces ya no son oro y plata vulgares". Por ello parece que el oro de los Filsofos no es oro del vulgar, ni en color ni en substancia, sino que es la tintura blanca y roja que de ellos se extrae. CAPITULO II Lo que es el oro de los Filsofos El oro o la plata de los Filsofos es un cuerpo metlico reducido a su ltima materia que es la primera de la piedra, a saber, en Mercurio, y esto se demuestra, ya que todo procede de la cosa en la cual se resuelve. Ya que todos los metales se reducen a plata viva, de ah viene que todos los Filsofos de comn acuerdo hayan dicho que en el Mercurio se encuentra todo lo que los sabios buscan y que el Mercurio es la raz de la Alquimia, ya que de l, por l y en l son todos los metales. Teofrasto, este pozo de ciencia de la Filosofa espagrica, tratando de la primera materia de los metales habla as: "Extraer el mercurio de los cuerpos metlicos no es otra cosa que resolver los metales en su primera materia, es decir, en Mercurio fluyente tal como era en el centro de la tierra, antes de la generacin de los metales, o sea, en vapor hmedo y viscoso que es el oro y la plata de los Filsofos, y que contiene invisiblemente en s el Mercurio y el azufre de la naturaleza, principios de todos los metales. Un Mercurio tal est dotado de una fuerza y de una virtud inefables y encierra secretos muy divinos". CAPITULO III De la preparacin de los cuerpos para formar el Mercurio de los Filsofos. Avicena nos declara: "Si quieres trabajar como es debido, debes necesariamente comenzar tu obra por la solucin y sublimacin de los dos luminares, pues el primer grado de la obra es hacer de ellos la plata-viva, pero como nuestros cuerpos, cuanto ms perfectos son tanto ms compactos, y han sufrido una mayor coagulacin, para que puedan ser reducidos a Mercurio, es necesario que tengan de antemano una preparacin y una calcinacin Fsica; no obstante, para la plata-viva no es tan necesaria, pues a causa de su blandura y pureza. nuestra agua puede actuar sobre ella con facilidad, lo que no ocurre con el oro y los dems metales, que precisan de toda una calcinacin previa, tras la cual nuestra agua puede fcilmente actuar sobre ellos, especialmente si estn depurados, a causa de la uniformidad de su substancia". Referente a la calcinacin de los cuerpos, el divino Doctor y Obispo de Trento en su obra secreta de la Piedra de los Filsofos nos advierte que: "antes de disolver los cuerpos en la Leche de la Virgen, es necesario calcinarlos y purgarlos. Para ello tmese Luna muy fina y muy sutilmente limada, disulvase en agua fuerte y luego hgase precipitar en cal blanca por medio de agua de lluvia destilada a la cual se le habr disuelto cal amoniacal o sal comn; habindose separado el agua, lvese y adlcese con nueva agua de lluvia hirviente, a fin de eliminar toda la salubridad y toda la acrimonia, seguidamente hgase secar y se obtendr una cal pursima. En cuanto al oro, se debe calcinar del siguiente modo: toma oro depurado por el cuerpo del guila negra, a fin de tenerlo bello y resplandeciente, y haz amalgama con Mercurio bien purgado por la sal y el vinagre y pasado por la gamuza; pon esta amalgama en agua fuerte bien preparada, de modo que todo el Mercurio se disuelva, separa el agua fuerte de la cal del Sol, lava esta cal como antes con agua caliente y scala a calor lento, despus de esto si se la reverbera ligeramente y con artificio, impidiendo su fusin, se volver como bellsimo azafrn". El oro se calcina an de otro modo, a fin de poder reducirlo a su primera materia, es decir en

Mercurio de los Filsofos, siguiendo lo que ensea Paracelso en el libro VII que lleva por ttulo "Metamorfosis", en los siguientes trminos: "Calcnese el metal con Mercurio revivificado, poniendo el Mercurio junto con el metal en un vaso sublimatorio y hacindolos digerir hasta que se forme una amalgama, seguidamente sublmese este mercurio a un fuego moderado y de nuevo, tritrese con la cal metlica y reitrese como antes la digestin y la sublimacin, y as tantas veces hasta que aproximando la cal a una candela encendida se deshaga como el hielo o como la cera. Pon el metal as preparado en digestin al vientre de caballo o al bao Mara razonablemente caliente, hacindolo digerir durante un mes, y el metal ser convertido en mercurio viviente, es decir en su primera materia llamada el Mercurio de los Filsofos o dicho de otro modo el Mercurio de los metales que muchos buscan y que pocos encuentran". Joachim Poleman en su tratado del Misterio del Azufre Filosfico, opina que el metal debe dividirse en tomos muy sueltos por medi de su doble corrosivo y debe triturarse bien, a fin que el menstruo gneo disolvente pueda extraer el alma tingente. En cuanto a nosotros, calcinamos el oro por una va mucho mejor y a esta calcinacin la denominamos la primera disolucin. Se realiza vertiendo sobre la cal del Sol o de la Luna vino de vida que es nuestro menstruo (del cual trataremos en nuestro cap. VI) de modo que cubra la materia con el espesor de un dedo, luego colocando una montera, deben ser digeridos en el fuego de cenizas. Una vez coagulados y vertido por encima nuevo menstruo se digieren y coagulan, esto hasta tres o cuatro veces, de modo que si la cal metlica se aproxima a la luz, se deshaga como la cera o como el hielo, lo que es signo evidente de una coagulacin perfecta y filosfica, que se realiza conservando la virtud metlica, tal como declara Aristteles en el Rosario: "Une Gabritius, el ms querido de tus hijos, con su hermana Beya que es una bella muchacha, resplandeciente, dulce y tierna". CAPITULO IV De la segunda o verdadera disolucin de los cuerpos o reduccin en mercurio. Hecha la calcinacin o primera disolucin, de cual hemos tratado en el captulo precedente, y que segn cierto autor annimo (en su Tratado de la Piedra de los Filsofos) ha de ser dulce y completamente natural, disolviendo el sujeto sin violencia y conservando su humedad radical, entonces, hay que poner dichos cuerpos as calcinados en un vaso sellado hermticamente y hacerlos digerir y pudrir a un fuego dulce de bao Mara o de roco, durante el espacio de un mes filosfico, (ya que como dice el Filsofo, una solucin dulce y voluntaria es mejor que una violenta, y una moderada a una precipitada), as se realiza la segunda y verdadera disolucin del metal, en agua viscosa o cierta untuosidad, con la conservacin de su humedad radical donde reposa el verdadero azufre metlico y al mismo tiempo el verdadero y muy precioso mercurio, siendo cada uno de ellos el amador del otro, permaneciendo el disolvente con el soluto sin poder ser separado de l a causa de la uniformidad de su substancia; lo cual hizo decir a los antiguos Filsofos que la natura se alegra en natura y que natura sobrepasa a natura y la transmuta. As se distingue la disolucin formal y esencial de la corrosiva y violenta. Hay que saber adems que de la Luna se engendra el licor o tintura verde que es el verdadero Elixir lunar, y un remedio soberano para fortificar el cerebro y que del Sol, por una putrefaccin semejante se produce el licor rojsimo que es el verdadero Elixir del Sol y la quintaesencia del metal, de la cual GEBER dice: "Hacemos el oro sanguinolento mejor que el producido por la naturaleza y que la naturaleza no podra hacer". De esta misma viscosidad GEBER declara an en su suma: "Hemos experimentado exacta-mente todas las cosas y por razones tomadas de ellas mismas, pero jams hemos podido encontrar algo que fuese permanente al fuego, excepto la

humedad viscosa, nica raz de todos los metales; todas las dems humedades se escapan fcilmente del fuego y sus elementos se separan unos de otros ya que no estn bien unidos en homogeneidad; pero la humedad viscosa, a saber el mercurio, no se consume jams en el fuego y su agua nunca se separa de la tierra, ya que todo permanece junto o todo se va". Pero quizs se me pedir: en qu peso hay que juntar el menstruo al metal? EL ROSARIO DE LOS FILSOFOS responder por m: "Al igual que un poco de levadura hace subir mucha pasta, un poco de tierra es suficiente para la nutricin de toda la piedra". Aristteles tambin nos muestra el peso diciendo: "Trabaja y cuece hasta que la tierra (es decir el oro) haya bebido diez partes de su agua". Y el autor de la Nueva Luz al final de su libro nos dice: "Se precisan diez partes de agua contra una parte de cuerpo, y por esta va hacemos nuestro mercurio sin el mercurio vulgar, tomando diez partes de nuestra agua mercurial (es decir de nuestro aceite mercurial de sal putrificado y pasado por el alambique) contra una parte del cuerpo del oro y habindolos encerrado en un vaso, por una coccin continua el oro se convierte en mercurio, es decir en un vapor untuoso que no es el mercurio vulgar como falsamente han imaginado algunos. CAPITULO V Qu es propiamente la quintaesencia. Paracelso en el libro tercero titulado "de Vita Longa" en el cap. 2 declara: "La quintaesencia no es mas que una perfeccin de la naturaleza, por la que sta es conducida a un cierto temperamento o mezcla espagrica, en la que no se encuentra ninguna contrariedad ni nada corruptible". El mismo autor en el Libro 4 de las Archidoxias nos dice que: "La quintaesencia es una materia que se extrae corporalmente de todo lo que crece y que tiene vida una vez separada de toda impureza y mortandad, sutilizada, purificada y separada de todo elemento"; un poco mas bajo nos dice: "Debes saber que la quintaesencia se encuentra en pequea cantidad en un tronco, en una hierba, en una piedra o cosa parecida y que el resto es puramente cuerpo ; de aqu hemos aprendido que es la separacin de los elementos". Rupescissa en el cap. 5 de la quintaesencia hacia el final leemos: "Hemos conocido por divina inspiracin, que por contnuas ascensiones y descensiones se realiza la separacin de la quintaesencia que buscamos, del cuerpo corruptible y de los cuatro elementos y esto ocurre as, porque lo que est sublimado dos o mas veces es tanto mas sutil, mas glorificado y mas exento de la corrupcin de los cuatro elementos que lo que slo ha sido sublimado una vez ; de este modo, lo que se sublimar hasta mil veces por una continua ascensin y descensin, llegar a un tal punto de glorificacin que el compuesto sera tan incorruptible como el Cielo o la materia del Cielo. Por ello es llamado quintaesencia y es en relacin al cuerpo lo que el Cielo en relacin al mundo y tanto como el Arte se acerca a la naturaleza mas semejante a ella se vuelve. CAPITULO VI Del fuego Filosfico o menstruo disolvente, o dicho de otro modo de nuestro licor Alkaest. Los Filsofos han ocultado siempre con gran cuidado la preparacin de esta agua o jugo muy noble, lo cual hizo decir al Conde Trevisano en su segundo libro que haba hecho voto a Dios, a los Filsofos y a la equidad, de jams exponerla a nadie en palabras claras ya que el secreto ms oculto de la obra; en efecto, si este licor fuera conocido por todos, hasta los nios se burlaran de nuestra ciencia, los ignorantes seran iguales a los sabios y todo el mundo, sin distincin, se inmiscuira en nuestra Filosofa y se destruira a s mismo, sin considerar en absoluto los deberes recprocos de la equidad y de la caridad. Augurel nos designa este menstruo por el nombre de Mercurio o plata-viva. Ripleus es de este mismo parecer, cuando en el Prefacio de sus doce puertas nos dice: "Te mostrar que

los Mercurios que son una llave de esta ciencia son lo que Ramn Llull denomina sus menstruos, sin los cuales nada puede hacerse. Con respecto a Geber, este los llama de otro modo: "Por el Dios Altsimo, -dice-, este agua que enciende la lampara, que ilumina las casas y da la abundancia de riquezas. Oh! nuestro mar, Oh! nuestra agua, Oh! nuestra sal nitro que ests derramada en el mar del mundo, Oh! nuestro azufre fijo y voltil, Oh! cabeza muerta o heces de nuestro mar". Trindensinus en su obra secreta de la Piedra de los Filsofos: "Los Filsofos han llamado al agua de la cual se sirven para realizar la obra la leche de la Virgen, el coagulado, el roco de la maana, la quintaesencia, el agua de vida, la hija de los Filsofos, etc." Paracelso la llama con distintos nombres, a veces Azoth, a veces espritu de vino, temperamento, circulado o agua mercurial; Sendivogius la llama Acero. Rupescissa el vinagre noblemente disuelto, y el muy profundo Filsofo Van Helmont se sirve del nombre del licor Alkaest: "El licor Alkaest, dice, reduce todo cuerpo palpable y visible a su primera materia, conservando su especie seminal, lo que ha hecho decir a los qumicos: el vulgar consume con fuego y nosotros con agua". A nosotros nos place llamarla un aceite mercurial de sal putrificada y pasada por el alambique, siguiendo la licencia filosfica que nos permite dar a nuestros hijos el nombre que queramos; en efecto es un aceite exaltado hasta el ms alto grado de perfeccin gnea y este aceite es el fundamento de toda solucin metlica, sin la cual nada puede servir en nuestra obra, lo que es til remarcar. Ejerce en nuestra obra las funciones de hembra y con justicia es llamada esposa del Sol y matriz. Adems es la llave que abre las puertas metlicas, ya que calcina los metales calcinados, los calcina, los pudre, los vuelve voltiles y espirituales, los tie de todos los colores y en fin, es el comienzo, el medio y el fin de las tinturas. Y an ms es de la misma naturaleza que el oro, tal como lo asegura Arnau de Vilanova, aunque la naturaleza del oro es completa, digerida y fija y la naturaleza de nuestra agua es incompleta, indigesta y voltil, en una palabra es el fuego de los Filsofos con el cual el rbol hermtico es convertido en cenizas. De este fuego Jean Pontanus habla as en su carta: "El fuego de los Filsofos no es en absoluto el fuego de bao, ni de estircol, ni ningn otro fuego semejante a los que los Filsofos mencionan en sus libros, pero es un fuego mineral, igual y continuo que no se evapora si no est demasiado excitado; participa del azufre y est tomado no de la materia sino de otra parte, lo destruye todo disuelve y congela; es un fuego que no cuesta nada o muy poco y con l se realiza la obra entera; aplcate pues en su estudio, para poder comprenderlo, ya que si yo lo hubiese conocido antes no hubiera errado doscientas veces antes de conocer la verdadera practica; es por eso que yerran, erraron y erraren siempre ya que este agente propio no ha sido enseado en los libros de los Filsofos, a excepcin de uno llamado Artefius, an que habla slo para si mismo; si no hubiese ledo a Artefius y comprendido lo que quera decir nunca hubiera llegado a la perfeccin de la obra, etc." Consulta pues este autor y comprenders lo que es nuestro menstruo; que lo dicho baste. CAPITULO VII De si el menstruo disolvente debe ser corrosivo. Geber parece ser de esta opinin cuando en el captulo cincuenta y dos de la Suma de Perfeccin dice que todo lo que disuelve debe necesariamente tener la naturaleza de sal, de alumbre o semejante. Y Paracelso, al principio del libro de la Quintaesencia dice as: "Es difcil, y casi imposible, extraer sin un corrosivo la esencia de los metales, especialmente el oro, que slo puede ser resuelto por un corrosivo que separe la quintaesencia del cuerpo y que luego pueda ser separado de l". Y adems en el captulo 3 del libro titulado "de Vita Longa", tomo III, dice: "resuelve el oro, con toda la substancia del oro por medio de un

corrosivo y ello tantas veces hasta que el oro y el corrosivo sean una misma cosa, en absoluto te sorprendas por este trabajo, ya que el corrosivo es muy necesario al oro y sin corrosivo est muerto". No obstante debeis saber que nuestro menstruo que aadimos al oro no puede ser llamado propiamente corrosivo, sino mejor gneo y que la fuerza y la virtud de este gran secreto vence todo lo venenoso, ya que la regia (o dicho de otro modo el mercurio vivo sublimado y seguidamente precipitado y muerto por el elixir solar) llega a una soberana y perfecta tintura. Con nuestro menstruo no se realiza ninguna disolucin violenta, como ocurre con las aguas fuertes, aguas regias y dems; sino que como hemos dicho en nuestro captulo IV se hace dulcemente y sin ruido, conservando siempre su hmedo radical con sus espritus (tal como dice Ramn Llull en su "Vade Mecum") "la virtud vivificante permanece infusa en nuestras materias". CAPITULO VIII De la prctica de la Piedra. A partir de que, por una precedente putrefaccin, has adquirido el alma tingente de nuestro planeta, es decir, la verdadera quintaesencia donde estn ocultos el verdadero mercurio y el verdadero azufre de los Filsofos, has encontrado la natural y verdadera materia con la cual puedes realizar nuestra Piedra bendita. Toma pues "en nombre de aquel que habl y todo fue hecho" la materia pursima q.s. Habindola puesto en un vaso fijatorio o en un frasco o huevo filosfico s.h. ponla en el atanor que sabes y con un rgimen de fuego conveniente, digestivo y contnuo (ya que si ste cesa, se produce la muerte del sujeto) dulce, sutil, alterador y que no combusta; hablo a la manera del Trevisano; contina tu obra desde la primera conjuncin hasta la perfecta ablucin (sobre el rgimen preciso del fuego puede consultarse el annimo Filaleteo, que describe claramente el rgimen de cada planeta y la diversidad de colores) coagulando y fijando tu piedra al blanco y al rojo. Pues tal cmo nos advierte Ramn Llull "Quien trabajando en nuestra obra no posee la fuerza y la paciencia, la pierde por su excesivo apresuramiento". La obra tendr su lnea de perfeccin si tirando la piedra sobre una lmina de cobre ardiendo, sin que humee funda como la cera, la penetre y la tia. Entonces nos ha nacido, sentado en su trono, el rey Oriental mas poderoso que todos los reyes de la tierra, por ello el Filsofo exclama: "salid del infierno, del sepulcro, despertad y abandonad las tinieblas, pues habis sido revestidos de esplendor y de gloria, la voz de la resurreccin ha sido escuchada y el espritu de vida ha sido puesto en vosotros". Sea alabado el Altsimo a causa de los grandes dones que nos ha deparado para gloria de su santo nombre y para beneficio del prjimo. CAPITULO IX De la aumentacin de la piedra bendita. Cuando por la gracia de Dios tengas en tu poder el azufre rojo incombustible del cual hemos hablado, te falta conocer el medio de aumentarlo haciendo de nuevo la vuelta de la rueda (como dicen los Filsofos) y ello encierra un secreto, que en el Arte no es de los menores, pues cabe aumentar por la misma va que la hicimos; y adems, nuestro azufre que es nuestra verdadera piedra, siendo regado a menudo y alimentado con su propia leche en un bao tibio se disuelve y seguidamente se coagula tal como lo hizo en la primera obra, as aumentar ms su virtud tingente de modo que si despus de acabada l a primera obra una parte de sta ha podido teir cien partes de mercurio o de algn otro metal imperfecto, teir mil partes despus de una segunda solucin por la leche de la Virgen que no es otra cosa que su coagulacin y fijacin; repitiendo siempre esto, nuestra medicina aumentar y multiplicar en cantidad y cualidad, en virtud y en peso. Toma pues una parte de nuestra piedra y vierte encima dos partes de leche de la Virgen o

dicho de otro modo, aceite mercurial de sal putrificada y pasada por el alambique, disuelve y coagula como hiciste en la primera obra y nuestra agua que antes slo era un metal en potencia ahora se volver un metal ms precioso que el oro, as la piedra se mortifica por las sublimaciones y se revivifica por las imbibiciones, esto es la soberana via universal. Habiendo conducido todas estas cosas a su fin deseado, podrs hacer la proyeccin sobre el metal que te plazca, despus de haberlo preparado bien, putrificado y fundido, segn hayas conducido tu tintura al blanco o al rojo, cuyo verdadero uso te ser enseado plenamente por tu propia experiencia y por la lectura de los libros de los Filsofos, especialmente nuestro Filaleteo. CAPITULO X Del uso de la piedra para la medicina tanto interna como externa. Debis saber que nuestra piedra bendita es una medicina universal que contiene en s misma el remedio perfecto para todas las enfermedades tanto calientes como fras, mientras sean curables por la naturaleza y Dios permita su curacin. Si te preguntas cmo esta medicina perfecta o tintura celeste acta en el cuerpo humano para curar las enfermedades contarias os responderemos que ello ocurre porque calienta e ilumina el "arche" por va de irradiacin, como muy doctamente dice nuestro Filsofo Van Helmont en su tratado que lleva por ttulo "In herbis, verbis, et lapidibus est magna virtus" donde nos muestra "que este tipo de medicinas y dems panaceas introducindose y penetrando fcilmente despiertan el "arche" adormecido y lo calientan por la radiacin e infiltracin de sus virtudes sin perder ni cambiar nada de sus pesos y propiedades". Esto lo confirma an Joachim Poleman cuando dice que "estas medicinas transmutan los espritus de las tinieblas, es decir las enfermedades que no son otra cosa que los Precursores de la muerte tenebrosa, en espritus de luz tal como eran antes cuando el hombre gozaba de salud y por esta renovacin de las fuerzas disipadas lo restablece en su vigor primero". La dosis de esta medicina es de un grano o dos segn la edad y fuerzas del paciente, mezclados en vino caliente o disueltos en una cucharada de su propia quintaesencia, debe tomarse uno de cada tres das. Respecto a las enfermedades externas como heridas, lceras, fstulas, gangrenas, chancros, etc. debe tomarse cada uno o dos das un grano disuelto en vino y con el mismo vino lavar o empapar la parte afectada, colocando sobre la herida una lmina de plomo con un vendaje conveniente. Este es el uso interno y externo de este gran remedio para cuya adquisicin es necesario invocar al padre de las luces, rogndole con un corazn y un amor puros, para que l ilumine tu entendimiento. Entonces trabaja como es debido, asiste a los pobres, en absoluto abuses de los dones de Dios, ten Fe y s hombre de bien. As sea. FIN

The Tomb of Semiramis.


This appears to have first been published in Latin in 1674, H.V.D. Tumba Semiramidis hermetic sigillata..., and shortly after in English printed in London. A third edition was included in Franz Gassman [Pantaleon], Disceptatio de lapide physico, Hamburg, 1678. A second English version was included in William Cooper's alchemical compendium, Collectanea Chymica, London 1683 (translated into Dutch and printed as Eenige philosophische en medicinale tractaatjes in Amsterdam in 1688). Latin versions were included in Miscellanea Curiosa Acadamiae Naturae Curiosorum, Frankfurt, 1678, Manget's compendium, Bibliotheca Chemica Curiosa, Geneva 1702, and issued under the name Abderita Democritus, De rebus sacris naturalibus et mysticis, Nurnberg, 1717. This book claims to reveal the secrets of the physical work of the philosophers stone, however, though it stays close to its theme it uses metaphorical and philosophical allusions to the process, rather than

approaching it directly in physical terms. The author indicates in the preface the reason for the title of his book "We therefore... do raise this knowledge, buried and obscured under the pretext of the Tomb of the most wise Semiramis, formerly Queen of Babylon..."

THE TOMB OF SEMIRAMIS Hermetically Sealed, Which if a Wise-man open (not the Ambitious Covetous Cyrus) he shall find the Treasures of Kings, inexhaustible Riches to his content. H. V. D.
The Epistle Dedicatory. Most Noble and most Famous, S.R.F. curious in the inspection of Nature, and my most honoured Patrons.

NOt only in former times, but also in this old also in this old Age of the World, nothing hath been deeper buried, nor hitherto more desired by all, especially the lovers of Art, than the knowledge of that great Mystery of the Philosophers, which by a known word is called the Philosophers-Stone; We therefore preserving the Inscription of the Monument, do raise this Knowledge, buried and obscured under the pretext of the Tomb of the most wise Seminramis, formerly Queen of Babylon, out of its Grave, and present it to the view of the Learned, which if ( not an ambitious covetous Cyrus, but ) a wise man open, he will to his satisfaction find Royal and inexhaustible Treasures: I may also add constant Health: which two, you will say, are the principal supporters of an happy life. But some haply of no small ingenuity will imagin that this Tomb may be opened by Women's work, or Children's sport: but let them know that this Knowledge is a most deep River, wherein the Lamb wades, that is, the upright profiteth; and the Elephant swims, that is, the most Learned do fluctuate, yea are drowned in their opinions, errors and doubts; whilst one is yet doubtful concerning the true subject of the Great work, yea generally a stranger to it; another very solicitous in acquiring the sophical Mercury. wearyeth himself with unsuccessful labours, not knowing what it is, or of what form; Another tortures himself with vain perplexity to know what the Philosophers Fire is, what the magical Elements, the Key, or dissolving Menstruum, whence it is to be drawn, whether sweet, or corrosive? cold or fiery? it hath troubled me often to see such men so concerned, and in vain laborious in those things, wherein they at length could find nothing but vanity and affliction of mind; wherefore commiserating them by the impulse of Charity, I do freely impart (though many will accuse me as guilty of violated silance) the Light mercifully communicated to me, that they may use the same as a Key to the Sanctuary of that sacred Knowledge. But the curious Industry, and indefatigable Curiosity of you, being most excellent in the exact Arcana's and Work of Polydaedalus nature, having invited all the Learned men of the World by your most sweet incitements, to communicate the most secret things, enjoyneth and

obligeth me to make you ( the genuine Sons of all sorts of Knowledge) Heirs of this, which in my judgment is the most exact and curious Work of all Nature. But who I am, inquire not. I am a man that makes it my study to profit others, your Friend, and an admirer of your Vertues, known to many, at least by name. Farewell therefore, ye Students of Nature, and High-Priests of Art, the lofty Stars of Germany, God be with you, and with his Power strengthen your Works and Thoughts, that they may be highly advantageous to the whole Commonwealth of Learning, for the increase of the Publick-good, and the immortal Glory of your own Names. From my Study, Jan.1. 1674.
THE TOMB of SEMIRAMIS Hermetically Sealed. CHAP. I. Of the Physical subject of the Philosophers Stone. THE Fear of the Lord is the beginning of our Work, and the end Charity, and love of our Neighbor. Entering therefore with the assistance of our good God upon so divine a Work, it must be first inquired, what the subject thereof is. For as a Plough-man in vain prepares his Ground for Harvest, unless he be assured of the Seed; so also he prepares the Chymical Ground without any recompense, if he knows not what he sows therein: and herein at this day many do perplex themselves, and are hurried into different opinions. But this is not a place to discuss all these things, whilst some do seek it in the Animal Kingdom in Blood, Sperm, Sweat, Urine, Hair, Dung, Egs, Serpents, Toads, Spiders, etc. Others are with great diligence imploy'd in the vegetable Kingdom, especially in wine for the unprofitable Magistery. For thought it be manifest to us, that the supreme Medicine of our health may be obtained in either Kingdom, and indeed in Man, (especially in his heart) as also in Wine: for as Gold contains the virtues of all Minerals, so do these two comprehend the powers of all Animals and Vegetables as contracted into one; yet that the great work of Philosophers could be made from them, was never in the thought of any Adept, it is therefore requisite to be sought in the Mineral Kingdom. But there is also here a great company of Dissenters, so that we have need of an Oepidus. For some there be that think to extract it out of the middle Minerals, as they call them, namely, Salt, Nitre, Alom, and such other, but all in vain, because they have in them no Argent vive, into which they may be resolved, in which error even we in our primitive ignorance were also involved. It remains therefore to be supposed, that Metals are the Physical subject of our blessed Stone. But here also the matter is in suspense, because Metals are some perfect and some imperfect. But in fine we say, that all fused Metals, but especially the not fused, though imperfect, may by the intimate depuration of their original pollution (which yet is very difficult, and by outward appearance scarce possible) be the subject of the Stone, whereof, saith Flamel, some have operated in Jupiter, others in Saturn, but I (saith he) have operated and found it out in Sol: and in Exercit. ad Turbam it is read, That all Metals clean and unclean are internally Sol, and Luna, and Mercury, but there is one true Sol, which is drawn from them. And the Author of the secret work of the Hermetick Philosophy, Can. 16.saith, He that seeks the Art of multiplying and perfecting imperfect Metals but by the nature of Metals, deviates from the truth; for Metals must be expected from Metals, as the species of Man from Man, of Beast from Beast. And Can. 18. He proceeds thus: Perfect Bodies are endowed with a more perfect Seed, under the hard shell therefore of the perfect Metals lieth the perfect Seed, which be that knoweth how to extract by Philosophical Resolution, is entred into the Royal Path. So also that Anonymous Philalethes in his Introduction into the King's Sacred palace, Chap. 19. concerning the progress of the Work in the first forty days; There is indeed in all (even in thecommon) Metals, Gold, but nearer Gold and Silver, though (as the same Adept speaks well) there is yet one thing in the Metallick Kingdom of an admirable offspring, in which our Gold is nearer than in common Gold and Silver, if you seek it in the hour of its nativity, which melts in our Mercury, as Ice in warm Water, etc. But leaving not these more imperfect Metals, at present we declare those two great and more perfect luminaries Sol and Luna, to wit, Gold and Silver, to be the Physical subject of the Stone, which way a great part of the Philosophers have followed, and came to their desired end. Which same thing Augurellus shews, 2 Chrysop. when he saith, Take a Metal pure, and purged of all its dross, whose Spirit recedes in its secret part, and being pressed with a great weight, lives privily, and desires to be released from bands, and to be sent out of prison to Heaven, being spread into thin plates. The same in Chrys. lib. 1. Seek not the principles of Gold and where else: for in Gold is the seed of

Gold; though being close shut up, it retires further, and is to be sought by us with tedious labour. And concerning the dignity of both the Luminaries, Lully, that Star of Spagyrick Philosophy, in his Book, P. M. 28 saith, Two are more pure than the rest, namely Gold and Silver, without which the Work cannot be begun or finished, because in them is the purest substance of Sulphur perfectly purified by the ingenuity of Nature, and out of these two bodies prepared with their Sulphur or Arsenick, our Medicine may be extracted, and cannot be had without them. And Clangor Buccine saith, You must operate prudently and expressly, because neither Sol nor Luna can be without ferment, and any other seed or ferment is not proper and useful, but Gold to the red, and silver to the white, which bodies being first subtiliated under weight, must then be sowed, that they may putrefy and be corrupted, where one form being destroyed, another more noble is put on, and this is done by the means of our Water alone. From hence a certain Anonymous in his Answer excellently concludes, As Fire is the principle of Fire, so Gold is the principle of Gold, such as the Cause is, such is the Effect, such as the Father, such the son, such as the Seed is, such is the Fruit, Man generates Man, and a Lion a Lion. But you will say, The Philosophers affirm, that the matter ought to be such, that the Poor as well as the Rich may obtain it; from whence that saying is, God hath granted this treasure to be sought by all men, nor doth he deny that great Good to any man, except to him that makes himself unworthy by the depraved affections of his heart. And Gerber, You ought not to consume your goods because of mean price: if you understand the principles of Art, which we shall deliver to you, you will attain to the complete Magistry. For if it were Gold, or any such costly thing, the Poor would be constrained to postpone this glorious Work. And whereas an Artist may often-times happen to erre, a poor man could not repeat the work after an error committed, which must absolutely be done, if there be no other remedy. And Lilium, This Stone is openly sold at the meanses rate, which if the Sellers knew, they would keep it in their hands, and by no means sell it. And another Anonymous, Our expenses exceed not the price of two Florins: which Arnoldus thus confirms: Hold fast, because the charge of our most noble Art exceed not the price of two pieces of Gold in its emption, that is, in the operation. And Geber saith, If in operations you lose your money, reflect not injuriously on us, but impute it to your own imprudence; for our Art requires no great expenses. To which we answer; That we never denied, that besides Gold and Silver there is not also granted another subject of meaner value, where we excluded not imperfect Metals, as we mentioned before out of an Anonymous Philosopher in these words; There is yet one thing in the Metallick Kingdom of an admirable beginning, etc. though many Philosophers would have this vile price to be understood of our dissolving Menstruum. Moreover, you will say out of Sendivogius Track. 11. in your Operations take not common Gold and Silver, for these are dead things. We answer, by granting that the Stone is not made of common Gold and Silver, as such, and so long as they are dead, but when resuscitated, and reduced into their first seminal nature, and made like unto the Philosophers Gold, then do they not only express their seed, but also do serve instead of ferment: which a certain Philosopher confirms in these words, saying; Neither the ancient nor the modern Philosophers have ever made anything but Gold of Gold, and Silver of Silver, yet that was not common Gold or Silver. By which it appears, that the Philosophers Gold is not common Gold, neither in colour nor in substance, but that which is extracted from them is the white and red tincture. CHAP. II. What the Physical or Philosopher's Gold is. THe Philosophers Gold or Silver, is a metallick body, resolved into the last matter, to wit, into Mercury, which is the first matter of the Stone, and is thus proved: Everything is from that into which it is resolved: But all Metals are reduced into Argent vive; ergo, they were Argent vive. For, according to the common opinions of Philosophers, that which the wise men seek is in Mercury. Moreover, Mercury is the radix in Alchymy, because from it, by it, and in it are all Metals. And Theophrastus (that most profound Sea of the Spagyrick-Philosophy) thus speaks concerning the first matter of Metals: To extract Mercury from metallick bodies, is nothing else but to resolve or reduce them into their first matter, that is, running Mercury, even such as it was in the center of the Earth, before the generation of Metals, to wit, a moist and viscous vapour, which is the Philosophers Gold or Silver, containing in it invisibly the Mercury and Sulphur of Nature, the principles of all Metals, which Mercury is of ineffable virtue and efficacy, and contains divine secrets. CHAP. III. Of the preparation of Bodies for the Philosophers Mercury. AVicen saith, If you desire to operate, you must necessarily begin your Work in the solution or sublimation of the two Luminaries; because the first degree of the Work is, that Argent vive may be made from thence; but because these, as the more perfect Bodies, are closer bound, and have an harder coagulation, that they may be reduced into Mercury, they do in the first place require preparation, and physical calcination, which indeed is not so necessary in Silver; for by reason of the cleanness and softness thereof, our Water easily acts

upon it; which is not done in Gold, and the other Metals, which do all require Calcination, on which our Water then more easily acts, especially if those which are impure be depurated for the similitude of substance. Concerning the Calcination of Bodies out of the secret Work of the Doctor and Bishop of Trent for the Philosophers Stone: Metals to be dissolved ought to be first calcined or purged in Lac virginis, and Luna being most fine and subtly filed, must be dissolved in Aqua-fortis, and distilled rain-water in which SalArmoniack, or common Salt hath been dissolved; then it must be precipitated into a most white Calx, and washed in decanted water, and the Calx must be edulcorated in other rain-water hot, that all the saltines and acrimony may be taken away, then must it be dried, and it will be a most pure Calx. But Gold must be calcined after this manner: Make an Amalgam with Gold (which must be first depurated by the Body of the black Eagle, that it may be made beautiful and glorious above measure) and Mercury very well purged with Salt and Vinegar, and strained through Leather, put it in purified Aquafortis, that all the Mercury may be dissolved, decant the Aquafortis from the Calx of Sol, wash the Calx as aforesaid in warm water, and dry it with a gentle heat, that Calx (if artificially and lightly reverberated, yet so that it flow not) will be converted into a most beautiful Crocus. Gold that it may be reduced into the first Matter, or Mercury of Philosophers, is thus otherwise calcined, whereof Paracelsus, in his 7th Book of Metamorphosis concerning resuscitation, declares, namely; that Metal must be calcined with revivified Mercury, by putting Mercury with the Metal into a Sublimatory, digesting them together, till an Amalgame be made, then sublime the Mercury with a moderate Fire, and bruise it with the metallick Calx, and as before, repeat the digestion and sublimation, and that so often till the Calx being put to a burning Candle will melt like ice, or wax. This Metal so prepared, put to digestion in Horse-dung or in Bal.Marie, moderately hot, digesting it for a month, and the Metal will be converted into living Mercury, that is, into the first matter, which is called the Philosophers Mercury; and the Mercury of metals, which many have sought, but few have found. Joachimus Poleman of the Mystery of the Philosophers Sulphur, by help of his duplicated and satiated Corrosive, divides a Metal into the least Atomes, and dilacerates it to be delivered to the fiery Menstruum, dissolving it to a tingeing Soul. It is calcined by us another and better way, which Calcination we rather call the first solution, and it is done by pouring the Wine of Life to the Calxes of Sol or Luna aforesaid, put into a Phial, (which is our Menstruum, of which hereafter in Chap. 6.) to the height of a fingers breadth, and putting to an Head or Alembick, they must be digested in Ashes, or also in Sand, and coagulated; being coagulated, you must pour on new Menstruum, as before, and coagulate, and that three or four times, or till the metallick Calx melt at the fire like Wax or Ice, which is a sign of sufficient Philosophical calcination; and this is done with the preservation of the Metal in its primitive virtue; and this is that which Aristotle saith in the Rosary, joyn your Son Gabricius dearer to you then all your Children) with his Sister Beja, who is a tender sweet and splendid Virgin. CHAP. IV. Of the second and true Philosophical Solution of Bodies, and their reduction into Mercury. HAving performed Calcination, or the first Solution, whereof we have spoken in the preceding Chapter, and which (as the anonymous Philosopher in his Golden Treatise of the Philosophers Stone in his Answer hath it) ought to be sweet and fully natural; that is, which should without noise dissolve the Subject with the preservation of its radical moisture, then the Bodies so calcined must be put into a Phial hermetically sealed, and in a gentle heat of Bal.Mar. or Dew, be digested, or putrefied the space of a Philosophical Month: for a voluntary Solution is better than a violent; a temperate, than a speedy; as the Philosopher hath it. And thus is made the second and true Solution of a Metal into viscous water, or a certain Olyity with the preservation of the radical moisture, in which is the true metallick Sulphur, together with the true and most noble Mercury: for one of them is always the Magnet, and remains solving with the solved, and desires to continue inseparably, and that because of the similitude of substance. Wherefore the Ancients said, Nature rejoyceth in Nature, Nature overcometh and altereth Nature, whereby the essential or formal Solution is distinguished from the corrosive Solution. But you must know that from Luna is obtained a liquor, or green tincture, which is the true Elixir of Luna, and the highest Arcanum to comfort the Brain. But from Sol by equal putrefaction is produced a Liquor of the highest redness, which is the true Elixir of Sol, and the quintessence of Metal. Whereof, saith Geber, we make sanguine Gold better than that produced by Nature, which Nature no wise makes. Concerning this Viscosity, Geber further speaks briefly: We have most exactly tried all things, and that by approved Reasons, but we could never find anything permanent in Fire, except the viscous Moisture, the sole radix of all Metals, when as all the other moistures being not well united in homogeneity do easily flee from Fire, and the Elements are easily separated from one another, but the viscous Moisture, to wit, Mercury is never consumed with Fire, nor is the Water separated from the Earth, but they either remain altogether, or go altogether away. The Author of Novum Lumen at the end of his Book breaks forth into these words; There ought to be ten parts of Water to one part of Body: and by this way we make Mercury

without common Mercury, by taking ten parts of our Mercurial Water (that is, the Mercurial oyl of Salt putrefied and alembicated) which is an unctious vapour, to one part of the body of Gold, and being included in a Vessel by continual coction, the Gold is made Mercury, that is, an unctuous vapour, and not common Mercury, as some falsely do imagine. CHAP. V. What a Quintessence properly is. PARACELSUS in his third Book of long Life, Chap.2. discourseth thus: A Quintessence is nothing else but the goodness of Nature, so that all Nature passeth into a spagyrick mixture and temperament, in which no corruptible thing, and nothing contrary is to be found. He also in his fourth Book Archidox. of the Quintessence saith, A Quintessence is a matter which is corporally extracted out of all Crescitives, and out of all things that have life, being separated from all impurity and mortality, most purely subtiliated, and divided from all the Elements thereof. And a little after in the same place; You ought to know concerning the Quintessence, that it is a matter little and small, lodged and harboured in some Tree, Herb, Stone, or the like; the rest is a pure body, from which we learn the separation of the Elements. Rupescissa concerning the Quintessence, in chapl5. about the end, saith, The Quintessence which we seek is therefore a thing ingeniated by divine breath, which by continual ascensions and descensions is separated from the corruptible body of the four Elements; and the reason is, because ht which is a second time, and often sublimed, is more subtle, glorified and separated from the corruption of the four Elements, then when it ascends only once; and so that which is sublimed even to a thousand times, and by continual ascension and decision comes to so great a virtue of glorification, that it is a compound almost incorruptible, as the Heavens, and of the matter of the Heavens, and therefore called Quintessence; because 'tis in respect of the Body, as the Heavens are in respect of the whole World, almost after the same way: by which Art can imitate Nature, as by a certain like, very near and connatural way. CHAP. VI. Of the Philosophical Fire, or Dissolving Menstruum, or our Liquor Alkahest. THe preparation of this Water, or most noble Juice, (which is the Kings true Bath) the philosophers always held occult, so that Bernard Count Tresne and Neigen, Book 2. said, he had made a vow to God, to Philosophers, and to Equity, not plainly to explain himself to any man, because it is the most secret Arcanum of the whole Work, and is so indeed; for if this Liquor were manifested to every man, Boys would then deride our Wisdom, and Fools would be equal to the Wise, and the whole World would rush hither with a blind impulse, and run themselves headlong without any regard to Equity or Piety, to the bottom of Hell. Augurellus calls this Menstruum Mercury in these words:

Tu quoq, nec captis Cylleni andacibus unquam Defueris Argentum vulgo quod vivere dicunt Sufficit, etc tantis prestant primordia rebus. Nor is Argent vive ever wanting to the bold undertaking of Cylenus, it yeelds principles to great things. The same doth George Ripley judge in his Preface of the twelve Gates: I will teach you truly, that these are the Mercuries that are the keys of Knowledge, which Raymund calls his Menstrua's, without which is nothing done. Geber names it otherwise, saying, by the most high God, this is that Water, which lighteth Candles, gives light to houses, and yeelds abundance of Riches, Oh the Water of our Sea! Oh our Sal Nitre appertaining to the Sea of the World! Oh our Vegetable! Oh our fixt and volatile Sulphur! O the Caput mortuum, or faces of our Sea! Tridensine in his secret work of the Philosophers Stone, saith: The Water which Philosophers used for the complement of the Work, they called Lac Virginis, Coagulum, the Morning-dew, the Quintessence, Aqua-vite, the Philosophers Daughter, etc. Paracelsus variously also, Azoth, Spirit of Wine temper'd and circulated, MercurialWater, Sendivogius, Chalibs; Rupescissa, Vinegar most nobly distilled. Van-Helmont (that most profound Philosopher by Fire) called it, the Liquor Alkahest, and thus describ'd it: The Liquor Alkahest resolves

every visible and tangible body into its first matter, preserving the power of the Seed, concerning which the Chymists say, the Vulgar burn by Fire, but we by Water. We, by the Philosophers leave, are those that can at will give names to their products, do call it the Mercurial Oyl of Salt putrefied and alembicated: for Oyl is exalted to an higher degree of a fiery quality, as it is the foundation of the whole metallick solution, (which is to be well observed) without which nothing can be advantageous in the Art, and it acts the part of a Woman in our Work, and is deservedly called the Wife of Sol, and the Matrix; and it is the hidden Key to open the close Gates of Metals; for it dissolves calcined Metals, it calcines and putrefies the volatile and spiritual, it tingeth into all colours, and is the beginning, middle and end of Tinctures; and is of one nature with Gold, as Arn.deVilla Nova affirms, unless that the nature of Gold is complete, digested and fixed: but the nature of the Water is incomplete, undigested and volatile. in a work, it is the Philosophers Fire, by which the Tree of Hermes is burnt to ashes. Concerning this Fire Johannes Pontanus in his Epistle saith, The Philosophers Fire is not the Fire of Balneo, nor of Dung, nor of any thing of that kind, which the Philosopher have published in their Writings; it is mineral, it is equal, it is continual, it evaporates not, unless it be too much incensed; it participates of Sulphur; it is taken elsewhere than from the matter; it divide, dissolves calcines and congeals all things; and it is a Fire with moderate burning; it is a compendium without any great charge, because the whole work is perfected therewith. Study therefore therein: for I had found this at first, I had not erred two hundred times before I attained to practice: wherefore men do err, have erred, and will err, because the Philosophers have not constituted a proper Agent in their Books, except one, namely Artephius. But he speaks according to his judgment; and unless I had read Artephius, and perceived his scope, I had never attained to the complement of the Work, etc. Do you consult him, and ye shall know what our Menstruum is. I have said enough.
CHAP. VII. Whether the dissolving Menstruum be corrosive. GEBER de Sum. perfect. Cap. 52 seems to be of this opinion, whist he saith, Every thing that is solved must necessarily have the nature of Salt, Alums, and the like. And Paracelsus in his fourth Book Archidox. of the Quintessence, a little after the beginning, saith thus: It is difficult, and scarce credible, to extract a Quintessence without a Corrosive out of Metals, but especially out of Gold, which cannot be overcome but by a Corrosive, by which the Quintessence and Body are one separated from the other; which Corrosive may again be taken from it. And Chap.3. of Long Life, Tom. 6. Book 3. he thus speaks: Resolve Gold together with all the substance of Gold by a Corrosive, etc. and that so long till it be made the same with the Corrosive: nor be you dismayed because of this way of operation; for a Corrosive is commodious for Gold, if it be Gold, and without a Corrosive it is dead. Yet you must know, that our Menstruum being poured upon Gold, ought not properly be said to be corrosive, but rather fiery; the strength and virtue of which Arcanum overcomes all Poisons. For every Realgar, that is, Mercury vive and sublimate, as also precipitate, ought to dye in the Elixirium of Sol, and come to a singular and excellent tincture; because also violent solution is not made by our Menstruum, such as by the Resuscitatives, Aquafortis and Regia, and others of this form; but (as was said before in the fourth Chapter) it is done gently, sweetly, without any noise, and with the preservation of its radical moisture, with the spirits of which (as Lully hath it in his Vade mecum ) a vivified

virtue is infused in the matters. CHAP. VIII Of the practice of the Stone. WHen you have acquired the tinging Soul of the Planet, or the true Quintessence thereof by previous putrefaction, in which the true Merrcury, and the Philosophers true Sulphur are contained: then is your matter prepared, fit to make thereby our blessed Stone. Take therefore (in the name of Him that said, and all things were done) of this most pure matter a sufficient quantity, put it into a fixing Vessel, or Phial, or Philosopher Egg, hermetically sealed; place it in an Athanor, as you know, and proceed with a convenient, viz. a digesting heat, continual, (for that failing it must needs dye, or become abortive) sweet, subtle, altering, and not burning (that I may use the Counts own words) from the first conjunction, even to perfect ablution, government of the Fire, concerning which the anonymous Philalethes may be further consulted, who by the government of every Planet cleerly describes the diversities of colours, coagulating and fixing it into the white or red Stone: for (as Raymond Lully advertiseth) he that hath not power and patience in the work, will corrupt it with too much haste. The sign of the Work perfected will be this: If the Stone being projected upon an hot plate of Venus, doth melt like Wax, and not smoke, but penetrate and tinge, then is the Oriental King born, fitting in his Kingdom with greater power than all the Princes of the World. Hence a Philosopher crys out, Come forth out of hell, arise from the Grave, awake out of darkness; for thou hast put on Brightness and Spirituality, because the voice of Resurrection is heard, and the Soul of Life is entred into thee, praised be the Most High; and let his Gifts redound to the Glory of his most holy Name, and to the good and benefit of our neighbour. CHAP. IX Of the augmentation of the blessed Stone. WHen by the help of God you have now obtained the aforesaid incombustible Sulphur, red with Purple, that you may by the repeated inversion of the Wheel (as the Philosophers term it) know how to augment it; in which no small mystery of Art is contained, we may the same way and method augment it; whereby we made it; yet you must know that the oftener our Sulphur, which is our Stone, is moisten or nourished by its proper Milk, dissolved in a moist Balneo, and again coagulated and fixed, as in the first work, the tinging virtue of it will be always greater; so that indeed after the first absolute work, one part will tinge an hundred of purged Mercury, or any other imperfect Metal, in the second solution by Lac Virginis, and the coagulation and fixation thereof, one part will tinge a thousand. And thus time after time is our Medicine augmented and multiplied in quantity and quality, in virtue and weight. Take therefore one part of our Stone, and pour it upon two parts of Lac Virginis, or the Mercurial Oyl of Salt putrefied and alembicated; solve and coagulate as you did in the first work, and our Water which before was only a Mineral potentially, is actually made a Metal more precious than Gold. And thus is the Stone mortified by sublimation's, and revivified by imbibitions, which is the chief universal way. These things being brought to a desired end, Projections may at pleasure be made upon this or that Metal prepared, and decently mundified and fused, as you have obtained the tincture either for white or red; the true use of this Art, and all the Philosophers Books, (especially our Philalethes) will abundantly shew. CHAP. X Of the physical use of the Stone both internal and external. YOU must know concerning this blessed Stone, that it is an universal Medicine containing in it the perfect Cure of all Diseases, as well hot, as cold, so far as they are known to be curable by Nature, and are permitted by God to be cured. If you inquire, how this most perfect Medicine, and Celestial Tincture, and such other Universal Curatives do act, and operate, by curing contrary things in Man's Body. We answer; They perform all this by heating, illuminating, and irradiating the Archeus, as our Philosopher Van Helmont hath it in a Treatise, entitled, There is in Herbs, Words and Stones a great Virtue, that they do certainly act without their dissolution or destruction, without their penetration, intro-admission, commixture, and commutation, also afar off upon the drowsie or inflamed Archeus, as it were by the sight alone, by the irradiation or ejaculation of their virtues produced and exposed, their former weight and properties being yet retained, and not changed. After which manner, as Joachimus Poleman excellently faith, They transmute the spirits of darkness, to wit, diseases, (which are all nothing else but the properties of the seat of death, or the forerunners of dark and obscure death) into good spirits, such as they were when the man was found in perfect health, and by this renovation of the defective powers, strength is withal universally restored. The dose of it is from one grain to two, according to the age and strength of the Patient in a draught of warm Wine, or in a spoonful of the same Quintessence dissolved, and taken every third day. In external Diseases,

Wounds, Cacoetheck and Phagedenick Ulcers, Fiftules, Gangreen, Cancer, etc. one grain is taken in Wine every day, or once in two days; but the part externally affected is washed in Wine, wherein a portion of our Stone hath been dissolved; or if necessity require, it is injected by a Syringe, putting a plate of Lead, and a convenient Ligature thereupon. And this is the internal and external use of this great Mystery consummated, for the acquisition of which invoke the light of Light, and with a pure heart pray for the illumination of your understanding, and you shall receive it: then operate prudently, give relief to the Poor, abuse not the blessings of God, believe the Gospel, and exercise your self in Piety. Amen. FINIS.