Overview

alchemy


Quick Reference

The medieval forerunner of chemistry, concerned with the transmutation of matter, in particular with attempts to convert base metals into gold or find a universal elixir.

The term comes (in late Middle English) via Old French and medieval Latin from Arabic alkīmiyā', from al ‘the’ + kīmiyā' (from Greek khēmia, khēmeia ‘art of transmuting metals’).

Subjects: medieval and Renaissance history (500 to 1500).


Reference entries

See all related reference entries in Oxford Index »