Imatges de pÓgina

friends; and from thence proceeds the next day to Eggleston—the day after to other places, to enquire for Miss Melmoth, but cannot find her

P. 262 101 By chance however he met with her at

Gretabridge, and from that place they set out for. Orton-Lodge, where they were married


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AZORA Burcot was the

Continuation daughter of a gentleman, of the history who was once poffefsed of a

of Azora. very great fortune, but by a fatal passion for the grand operation, and an opinion of the possibility of finding the philosopher's stone, he wasted immense sums in operations : to discover that preparation, which forces. thé fæces of infused metals to retire immediately on its approach, and so turns the rest of the mass into pure gold; communicating the malleability and great ductility of that metal, and giving it true specific gravity, that is, to water, as eighteen and one half is to one. His love of that fine, antient art, called chymistry, brought him into this misfortune. For improvement and pleasure, he had been long engaged in Vol. H.



various experiments, and at last, an adept came to his house, who was a man of

great skill in the labours and operations of spagyrists, and persuaded him it was possible to find the stone; for he, the adept, had seen it with a brother, who had been so fortunate as to discover it, after much labour and operation. The colour of it was a pale brimstone and transparent, and the size that of a small walnut. He affirmed that he had seen a little of this, scraped into powder, caft into some melted lead, and turn it into the best and finest gold. This had the effect the adept desired, and from chymistry brought Mr. Burcot to Alcbymy. Heaps of money he wasted in operations of the most noble elixir by mineral and salt; but the stone after all he could not find : and then, by the adept's advice, he proceeded in a fécond method, by maturation, to subtilize,

(20) There is a third way to make gold, to wit, by separation, for every metal contains some quantity of gold; but the quantity is so small that it bears no proportion to the expence of getting it out: this last way the Spagyrists never attempt; and as for the two other methods, maturation, and transmuting by the grand elixir, the happy hour will never come, tho' so many ingenious men have often thought it drawing nigh. To console them for the loss of their fortunes they have had some comfortable moments of reflection, that they have been within some minutes of success,


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purify, and digest quicksilver, and thereby convert it into gold (20.) This likewise came to nothing, and instead of the gold he expected, he had only heaps of Mercury fixed with verdegrease, (which gives it å

when, crack! all is gone and vanished on a sudden, and they have nothing before them but cinders and broken crucibles. It is very strange then, that a man of Dr. Dickenson's great veracity and skill in chymiItry, should affirm the thing was actually done in his presence by an adept. (Epiftola ad Mundanum de quintessentia philosophorum, etc. Oxon. 1686.) and the more so, as his friend, the great Mr. Boyle, told. him the thing was an impossibility. Dickenson's words are, Nec potui fane quantacunque mihi fuerit opinio de ista re, quin aliquoties animi penderem donec illuftris ea demonstratio quam vestra excellentia, biennio jam elapso, coram exhibuit, omnem ansam dubitandi mihi præcidifetPlacuit dominationi vestræ claro experimento ante oculos facto animum meùm ad opus accendere etiam quæstionum mearum folutiones (quantum licerat) promittere.---This is very surprising; and the more fo, as the greatest watchings and closest application, in searching after the stone, are all in vain, unless the stars shed a propitious influence on the labours of the Spagyrift: the work must be begun and advance in proper planetary hours, and depends as much on judicial astrology, as on fire, camphire, salt, labour, and patience : but judicial astrology is no science. It is a mere farce. I must conclude then, that the hands of Mundanus the adept, were too quick for the doctor's eyes, and he deceived him by legerdemain : that all the books on the subject are fraudulent descriptions to deceive the credulous; and what Mundanus told Dicken on of


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