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The Chemical Choir: A History of Alchemy Hardcover – 29 May 2008

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Hambledon Continuum; First Edition edition (29 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184725148X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847251480
  • Product Dimensions: 16.7 x 2.1 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,301,834 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

"There are marvellous stories of successful transmutation from various metals into gold, but [Maxwell-Stuart] also looks carefully at the influence of religion and politics...a coherent and interesting overview of an obsession that has gripped members of our species for 3000 years or more."- Emma Restall Orr, The Druid Network, June 2008 Mention -Book News, November 2008 Mention --Book News, November 2008 Mention Book News, November 2008 "New age libraries and any interested in spiritual topics will find The Chemical Choir a fine review of alchemy and its evolution from early to modern times. The history of alchemy embraces changing human legacies and perceptions: chapters cover historical, cultural and religious changes accompanying changing ideas of alchemy and its practices. It's a fine, wide-ranging survey new age collections will welcome." -Midwest Book Review, December 2008 "The Chemical Choir helps make the arcane and often disrespected activities of alchemy more accessible and meaningful, not only to chemists and other scientists, but also to those interested in history and philosophy. Summing Up: Recommended. All libraries." -R. E. Buntrock, CHOICE, March 2009 'It breaks down a complex subject the study of nature through experiments with chemicals into ten easy-to-read chapters ...The reader who has always wondered about alchemy and has not yet read a history of the subject will find The Chemical Choir an entertaining starting point.' - Reviews in History 'It breaks down a complex subject -- the study of nature through experiments with chemicals -- into ten easy-to-read chapters ...The reader who has always wondered about alchemy and has not yet read a history of the subject will find The Chemical Choir an entertaining starting point.' - Reviews in History 'It breaks down a complex subject - the study of nature through experiments with chemicals - into ten easy-to-read chapters ...The reader who has always wondered about alchemy and has not yet read a history of the subject will find The Chemical Choir an entertaining starting point.' - Reviews in History

Synopsis

The history of alchemy is traced from its earliest roots through to its influence and use in modern-day science.Beginning in China in the search for the secret of immortality, and appearing independently in Egypt as an attempt to produce gold, alchemy received a great boost in Europe from studies by Islamic and Jewish alchemists. Their written accounts were translated into Latin and combined with what was known of Greek natural science to produce an outburst of attempts to manipulate matter and change it into transformative substances called the Philosopher's Stone and the Elixir of Life.Alchemy's heyday in Europe was the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Demonstrations of the art were performed in royal courts under conditions meant to obviate any fraud, and specimens of the gold so transmuted can be seen in various museums. During the nineteenth century, attempts were made to amalgamate alchemy with the religious and occult philosophies then growing in popularity; and in the twentieth century psychologists - principally Carl Jung - perceived in alchemy a powerful vehicle for aspects of their theories about human nature.

At the same time laboratory scientists continued to experiment in ways very similar to those of their Medieval and early modern forebears.P.G. Maxwell-Stuart explores the history of alchemy with authority and verve, showing that its study is not one of the odder byways of antiquarianism but a living part of the history of Science itself.

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10 October 2012
Format: Hardcover
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 reviews
Mary A. Bennett
5.0 out of 5 starsAlchemy overview
18 July 2016 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase
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