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alchemy

Line breaks: al|chemy
Pronunciation: /ˈalkɪmi
 
/

Definition of alchemy in English:

noun

[mass noun]
1The 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: occult sciences, such as alchemy and astrology
More example sentences
  • Like astrology, knowledge of alchemy filtered into medieval Europe through Moorish centres of learning in Spain.
  • But it no more belongs in a biology class than alchemy belongs in a chemistry class, phlogiston in a physics class or the stork theory in a sex education class.
  • A further compilation of ancient texts concerning astrology, magic and alchemy was the Hermetica, written in Alexandria around 100 AD.
Synonyms
magic, sorcery, witchcraft, enchantment
1.1A seemingly magical process of transformation, creation, or combination: finding the person who’s right for you requires a very subtle alchemy
More example sentences
  • He uses everything from chemicals to computers to achieve his effects; but his processes really seem a kind of alchemy or magical transformation, awakening swaths of cloth to the play of the body.
  • Where he had consistently been able to pull off the magical alchemy that produced increased public spending and tax cuts, economic growth and falling interest rates, he now had to admit he had got things wrong.
  • What is striking is the creative alchemy that transforms authentic personal experiences into imaginative tales.

Origin

late Middle English: via Old French and medieval Latin from Arabic al-kīmiyā', from al 'the' + kīmiyā' (from Greek khēmia, khēmeia 'art of transmuting metals').

More
  • chemist from (Late Middle English):

    The word alchemy (Late Middle English) was a medieval science that looked to transform matter, in particular to convert base metals into gold or find a universal ‘elixir of life’. It was the medieval equivalent of chemistry, and was also the origin of the word. Alchemy came via Old French and medieval Latin from Arabic al-kīmiyā, which was from Greek khēmia ‘the art of transforming metals’. See also elixir

Derivatives

alchemic

1
Pronunciation: /alˈkɛmɪk/
adjective
Example sentences
  • In conjunction with the human voices on the soundtrack, the video installation indexes life as a process in between solidity and liquidity, in exchange and alchemic reaction.
  • It is interesting that two centuries ago, when science was evolving past the alchemic level, scientists thought that it wouldn't be long before all the mysteries of the universe would be uncovered.
  • With a fine and deft delicacy, nature and landscape are imbued with a soft surrealism, edging towards an alchemic, almost spiritual symbolism.

alchemical

2
Pronunciation: /alˈkɛmɪk(ə)l/
adjective
Example sentences
  • For instance, Charles II of England attempted transmutations and even Sir Isaac Newton spent considerable time decoding alchemical books.
  • However, the real goal of alchemical work is not to obtain material gold, but spiritual gold: a state of enormous power, clarity, and purity.
  • I love that I can do these intense things to people's bodies, and somehow, through some alchemical transformation, it's not a bad thing.

alchemist

3
noun
Example sentences
  • IT HAS been the ultimate goal of alchemists and sorcerers for centuries - the ability to soar past three score years and 10 and enjoy greater longevity.
  • The success of charlatans, sorcerers, and alchemists - and all those who abuse public credulity - is founded on errors in this type of calculation.
  • These early shamans were also alchemists and practiced astrology.

alchemize

4
(also alchemise) verb
Example sentences
  • Certainly the most English playwright, if by that we mean the dramatist who observes the manners and rancor of the quiet middle class and alchemizes them into delicious and troubling comedy.
  • The act of writing down a personal thought alchemizes it into reality.
  • A world, of the 30s and the 80s, alchemized in a few words.

Words that rhyme with alchemy

hypergamyPtolemy

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Pronunciation: ˈtɛnɪbrəs
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