Saturday, May 06, 2006

Alchemist James Price failed bigtime

Today according to Australian Eastern Standard Time when this item was posted

1782 James Price, a Guildford, England chemist, began an experiment (concluded May 25) to turn mercury ... into gold. He presented some of his supposed gold to King George III, and was awarded the degree of MD by Oxford University.

Sir Joseph Banks (the botanist famed for his work in Australia with Captain James Cook) and suspicious members of the Royal Society asked him to repeat his experiments publicly. For this purpose he left London, in January 1783, for his laboratory at Guildford, faithfully promising to return in a month, and confound and convince all his opponents. Eight months passed, and on August 3, 1783, Price called a group of three very dubious RS members together – and drank prussic acid in front of them, falling dead. It may be seen to mark the death of traditional alchemy in England ...

Alchemists in the Almanac:

Cornelius Agrippa :: Roger Bacon :: Count Cagliostro :: John Dee :: Edward Kelley

Robert Fludd :: Isaac Newton :: Paracelsus :: Tycho Brahe :: Raymond Lulle

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Blogger Leucipo said... points out that a full trnasmutation of mercury into gold and platinum is strongly exothermic. Risky thing.

12:47 AM  

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