What does alchemy mean?

Definitions for alchemy
ˈæl kə mialche·my

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word alchemy.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. chemistry, interpersonal chemistry, alchemynoun

    the way two individuals relate to each other

    "their chemistry was wrong from the beginning -- they hated each other"; "a mysterious alchemy brought them together"

  2. alchemynoun

    a pseudoscientific forerunner of chemistry in medieval times


  1. alchemynoun

    The ancient search for a universal panacea, and of the philosopher's stone, that eventually developed into chemistry

  2. alchemynoun

    The causing of any sort of mysterious sudden transmutation.

  3. alchemynoun

    Any elaborate transformation process or algorithm.


  1. Alchemy

    Alchemy (from Arabic: al-kīmiyā; from Ancient Greek: χυμεία, khumeía) is an ancient branch of natural philosophy, a philosophical and protoscientific tradition that was historically practiced in China, India, the Muslim world, and Europe. In its Western form, alchemy is first attested in a number of pseudepigraphical texts written in Greco-Roman Egypt during the first few centuries AD.Alchemists attempted to purify, mature, and perfect certain materials. Common aims were chrysopoeia, the transmutation of "base metals" (e.g., lead) into "noble metals" (particularly gold); the creation of an elixir of immortality; and the creation of panaceas able to cure any disease. The perfection of the human body and soul was thought to result from the alchemical magnum opus ("Great Work"). The concept of creating the philosophers' stone was variously connected with all of these projects. Islamic and European alchemists developed a basic set of laboratory techniques, theories, and terms, some of which are still in use today. They did not abandon the Ancient Greek philosophical idea that everything is composed of four elements, and they tended to guard their work in secrecy, often making use of cyphers and cryptic symbolism. In Europe, the 12th-century translations of medieval Islamic works on science and the rediscovery of Aristotelian philosophy gave birth to a flourishing tradition of Latin alchemy. This late medieval tradition of alchemy would go on to play a significant role in the development of early modern science (particularly chemistry and medicine).Modern discussions of alchemy are generally split into an examination of its exoteric practical applications and its esoteric spiritual aspects, despite criticisms by scholars such as Eric J. Holmyard and Marie-Louise von Franz that they should be understood as complementary. The former is pursued by historians of the physical sciences, who examine the subject in terms of early chemistry, medicine, and charlatanism, and the philosophical and religious contexts in which these events occurred. The latter interests historians of esotericism, psychologists, and some philosophers and spiritualists. The subject has also made an ongoing impact on literature and the arts.


  1. alchemy

    Alchemy is a pseudoscientific and philosophical tradition that was practiced throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. It aimed to purify, mature, and perfect certain objects, especially the transmutation of base metals like lead into noble metals like gold. Alchemy also sought to discover a universal cure for disease and a way of extending life. The metaphorical interpretations of alchemy incorporate spiritual themes like transformation and personal growth.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Alchemynoun

    an imaginary art which aimed to transmute the baser metals into gold, to find the panacea, or universal remedy for diseases, etc. It led the way to modern chemistry

  2. Alchemynoun

    a mixed metal composed mainly of brass, formerly used for various utensils; hence, a trumpet

  3. Alchemynoun

    miraculous power of transmuting something common into something precious

  4. Etymology: [OF. alkemie, arquemie, F. alchimie, Ar. al-kma, fr. late Gr. , for , a mingling, infusion, juice, liquid, especially as extracted from plants, fr. to pour; for chemistry was originally the art of extracting the juices from plants for medicinal purposes. Cf. Sp. alquimia, It. alchimia. Gr. is prob. akin to L. fundere to pour, Goth. guitan, AS. getan, to pour, and so to E. fuse. See Fuse, and cf. Chemistry.]


  1. Alchemy

    Alchemy is an influential philosophical tradition whose early practitioners' claims to profound powers were known from antiquity. The defining objectives of alchemy are varied; these include the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone, the ability to transform base metals into the noble metals, gold or silver; and the elixir of life, which confers youth and longevity. Western alchemy is recognized as a protoscience that contributed to the development of modern chemistry and medicine. Alchemists developed a framework of theory, terminology, experimental process and basic laboratory techniques that are still recognizable today. But alchemy differs from modern science in the inclusion of Hermetic principles and practices related to mythology, magic, religion, and spirituality.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Alchemy

    Alchymy, al′ki-mi, n. the infant stage of chemistry, as astrology was of astronomy.—A chief pursuit of the alchemists was to transmute the other metals into gold, and to discover the elixir of life.—adj. Alchem′icn. Al′chemist, one skilled in alchemy. [Ar. Al-kīmīāal, the, and kīmīā—late Gr. chēmeia, 'transmution,' prob. as specially an Egyptian art, from Khem, the native name of Egypt; confused with Gr. chūmeia, pouring, from chein, to pour, hence the old spellings alchymy, chymistry.]

The Nuttall Encyclopedia

  1. Alchemy

    the early analysis of substances which has in modern times developed into chemistry, and which aimed chiefly at the discovery of the philosopher's stone, of a universal solvent, and of the elixir of life; it has been defined to be "an art without art, which has its beginning in falsehood, its middle in toil, and its end in poverty."

How to pronounce alchemy?

How to say alchemy in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of alchemy in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of alchemy in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of alchemy in a Sentence

  1. Allison Russell:

    That's the alchemy of music -- you write these things that are personal to you, but once you release them into the world, they take on their own life depending on the listener and the listener's experience.

  2. Pearl Buck:

    There is an alchemy in sorrow. It can be transmuted into wisdom, which, if it does not bring joy, can yet bring happiness.

  3. Henry Kissinger:

    Leaders must invoke an alchemy of great vision.

  4. Aloo Denish:

    Biochemistry is the alchemy of nature, transforming simple elements into the majestic tapestry of life ~ Aloo Denish

  5. Harvey Weinstein:

    The alchemy is mine and Diane has been the leader ever since and it has been great.

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Translations for alchemy

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"alchemy." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 26 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/alchemy>.

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    a numerical quantity measured or assigned or computed
    • A. vehicle
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