THE COMPOVND OF ALCHYMY. OR The ancient hidden Art of Archemie: Conteining the right & perfectest meanes to make the PHILOSOPHERS STONE, Aurum potabile, with other excellent Ex­periments. Diuided into twelue Gates. First written by the learned and rare Philosopher of our Nation GEORGE RIP­LEY, sometime Chanon of Bridlington in Yorkeshyre: & Dedicated to K. EDVVARD the 4. Whereunto is adioyned his Epistle to the King, his Vision, his Wheele, & other his Workes, neuer before published: with certaine briefe Additi­ons of other notable Writers concer­ning the same. Set foorth by Raph Rabbards Gentleman, studi­ous and expert in Archemicall Artes.

Pulchrum pro Patria pati.

LONDON Imprinted by Thomas Orwin. 1591.

TO THE MOST HIGH and Mightie PRINCESSE, ELIZABETH by the grace of GOD QVEENE of England, Fraunce, & Ire­land, Defender of the faith, &c.

EXcellent, most gracious, & sacred SOVERAIGNE: calling often to re­membraunce, how miraculously it ple­sed the Almightie manie waies to pre­serue & defind your MAIESTIE, in the time of late do­mesticall persecuti­on, from the merci­lesse hands of those butcherly murthe­rers, who not onely sought all occasions by spilling your HIGH­NESSE innocent blood, to bereaue this Kingdome, and vs all, (that since haue liued vnder your royall, prosperous, and happie Gouernment) of so rare and precious a Iewell, as Nature hath not at anie time to any Nation else where, affoorded the like; but also prosecuted with sword, fire, banishment, or (at the least) streight imprisonment, all such as were in any respect fauoured by [Page] your HIGHNESSE, or in anie sort cast their eyes once toward the Orient, where the bright splendent beames of your incompa­rable MAIESTIE, lightneth our Horizon, to the comfort and consolation of manie thousands afflicted, & the singular ioy of the whole Realme, verie fewe persons excepted, whose bleared eyes be­ing dazeled therewith, sought palbable darknesse, to auoide the cleare light then arising with the rare Comet or incomparable day starre of your most excellent MAIESTIE vnto vs: whose piercing rayes hath since like the Sunne beames both dispersed all grossemists and fogges of ignorance, error, & blinde superstition, and withall so comforted and nourished the plant of infallible truth of the Gospell, (first taking roote in this Land in the short Raigne of the peerelesse Prince EDVVARD the sixt your MA­IESTIES Brother, of most rare expectation and famous me­morie) as the same being now sprung vp to a perfect tree of such full groath, that the branches thereof haue spread themselues long and wide manie waies ouer other Empires, Kingdomes & States, mauger the Diuell, the Pope, & the King of Spaine, with all their fraternitie, consorts, leaguers, and adherents, or other their Mi­nisters, spreaders and maintainers of lies; vnder the shelter and couert of which flourishing Palme, all true Christians haue been, are, and (I hope) long shall be (by the continuance of your MA­IESTIES most bountifuull and gracious especiall fauor) pro­tected and shrowded, from the burning heate of the sharpe perse­cutions of all malicious Enemies thereof: the which GOD of his great mercie graunt. Pondering I say (most high and mightie PRINCESSE) the manifold imminent dangers, your sacred MAIESTIE by the omnipotent wonderfull prouidence, of Almightie GOD, with more than humane vertue, and feminine patience sustained; & in the end (contrarie to all ex­pectation) escaping the rage, furie, tyrannicall attempts, and se­cret diuelish practises of your HIGHNESSE mortall Enemies, (vtter professed vnreconcileable aduersaries) to the eternall truth: whereof my selfe was an eye witnesse, and so farre priuie of some of the most mischieuous intended conspiracies, as for my faithfull in­deuours by such rare secrete seruices as were by mee effected to [Page] preuent the same; I tasted (amongst the rest of such as then ho­noured, reuerenced, and of bounden duetie loued your MAIES­TIES rare vertues) so great extremitie of imprisonment, & o­ther hard vsage many wayes, as scaping with life, (by timely and happy alteration of the state) I felt long after the paines of those torments, whereby my health in xx. yeares after was extreamly empayred: But when J consider on the other side withall, the strange and miraculous Heroicall Actions both martiall & po­litick which haue been (since in the time past of your HIGH­NESSE most prosperous raigne) beyond all expectation perfor­med with singuler gouernment and incomparable magnanimitie, farre passing all humane wisedome and mans force (whereof po­steritie shall want no due recordes of worthy Registers) I can not but forget all sorrow, & exceedingly reioyce, assuring & per­swading my selfe GOD hath ordained your MAIESTIE to accomplish yet farre greater matters for his glory and your owne eternall memory, than time hath yet reuealed: for the better ac­complishment whereof, euery dutifull subiect and good Patriott ought in time of tranquillitie to prepare and furnish themselues according to their seuerall gifts, abilities, and different faculties: to further and set foorth a worke so great as is likely to fall out by all cōsequence of reason in this your MAIESTIES most hap­py raygne, vz. the Nobilitie with learning, iudgement, and ex­perience, for counsell and aduice, as well for warlike discipline as for ciuill gouernment; for that the one cannot long continue with­out the other: Gentlemē with ingenious deuises and stratagems of warre both for sea and land, and the whole Souldiorie of all sorts with actiuitie, and the practise of such sortes of weapons as they shall addict themselues vnto, or be found fit to serue withall, wher­by euery man of what degree or quality soeuer professing the wars, may in time of cessations of Armes, some in one sorte, some in an other, inable themselues for the defence of their Countrey, against they shalbe imployed; for without appoyntment & calling, no man ought to intrude or offer himselfe, in such sorte as is now too com­monly vsed; which is the cause that so many audatious insuffici­ent blinde bayardes are set a worke: whilest the modest, skilfull, [Page] and experienced liue retired, attending their vocation by the Magistrate: of which number I professe my selfe in my facultie to bee one, who hauing these fortie yeares amongst many o­ther most commendable exercises and inuentions of so warlike Engines, founde out diuers deuises of rare seruice, both for Sea and land, some whereof (whose charge exceeded not my small abilitie) I haue performed and made the vse thereof knowen vnto many my honourable, skilfull and experienced good friendes at home, and to some Princes beyonde the Seas, whereof ignoraunt persons hauing by chaunce light on some Modules or Patternes of small importance imperfect, haue vainely arrogated the inuention vnto themselues; not know­ing in any sorte the vse and force thereof in seruice, making therby great aduantage to themselues by abusing superiour Authoritie with these imperfect first Elements of my preparations to greater matters; supplying the lamenes and effects thereof, by their for­mality, and mellicious friuolous discourses, wherin there is no sub­stance to any purpose: seeking to reape thereby the fruites of my chargeable and painefull labours; & my name in the meane time neuer once brought in question: Such is and hath beene the in­solent, and shameles boldnes of ignorant persons in all times fit to be restrayned, least greater mischiefes and inconueniences ensue thereby, when occasion requireth due triall to be made of their sufficiencie, and the right vse of these rare Experiments. But to leaue (most gratious SOVERAIGNE) the consideration of these important causes vnto the deepe wisedome and discreete prouidence of your HIGHNES owne carefull foresight, and the ordering and reformation thereof to such as are in authoritie: And to returne to my purpose; among many studious inuenti­ons, whereunto I haue bent my minde as well for the seruice of my countrie, when time shall serue, as for mine owne satisfaction; Looking withall into some parte of the rare inscrutable secrets of naturall Phlosophie, and falling sometimes to the charge­able, paynefull, and fruiteles practise thereof▪ by distillation, and other transmutation of Plants, Hearbs, Stones and Mineralls of all sortes: ayming at that marke, which many learned and grea­ter [Page] Clearks than my selfe haue shot at, and yet missed; J haue not­withstanding by the way light (to my singuler cōtentment) on in­finite rare conclusions, both profitable, pleasant, and seruiceable; so that although my simple skill could not attaine to such perfecti­on, as J desired, yet haue I no cause to repent me any way of my trauells therein imployed but rather great occasion to lament me of my long discontinuance from the same, by losse of many yeares spent vnprofitably in a laborinth of law suites, and priuate con­tention with men of verie great abilitie, and better friended than my selfe, wherein now vtterly wearyed, and worne out of heart, through the greatnes of my aduersaries purse and friendes, J am now forced for want of abilitie, after ten yeares chargeable suite, to relinquish the same, and to returne to those my delecta­ble studies and seruiceable exercises againe, as well to digest melancholick conceipts, as to keepe olde age from such extream wants, as the iniquitie of times, the tedious greeuance by delayes, the striuing against strōg armes wil bring; the least able to weary afar welthier man than my selfe, hoping yet to recouer some parte of my lost time, and (if abilitie altogether faile me not before I die,) to make vnto your MAIESTIE some rare Present by experiments Chimicall or Martiall, such as hitherto hath not been performed by any other. Wherefore (most gracious SOVERAIGNE) desiring hencefoorth to employ the rest of my shorte course, in more serious sorte, to the seruice of GOD, your MAIESTIE, and my Countrey, & by all meanes I can possible to profit some wayes this Royall kingdome and State, (wherein I haue liued these threescore yeares and more) I am bolde to publish this rare worke of learned Ripley vnder your MAIESTIES protection for the instruction and direction of all studentes, and louers of the secreat Mysteryes of naturall Philosoophie; deliuering most compendiously the hidden Arte and high Mysterie of making the Philosophers Stone, (sought for by many thousandes in all ages, but founde of very fewe, and they such as rapte with the excellency thereof, haue in contempt of the worlde, retired themselues from com­mon [Page] societie, keeping the same most secret to themselues, esteeming the world not worthy of so precious a Iewell. For the certaintie and probabilitie whereof, if any shall bee doubtfull let them adui­sedly reade throughly this work, and afterwards peruse the doings of such other our worthy countrey men as haue written most lear­nedly therof, as Frier Bacō, Iohn Pauper, Sir Thomas Norton knight, Iohn Garland, & especially M. Doctor Dee in his Mo­nas Hyerogliphica, and many others most plainly teaching the same, whose depth of learning Theoricall if it were yet executed by any experienced practitioner, I doubt not but your MAIES­TIE should shortly see that which the world thinketh [...] to be [...]: and if I had bin so fortunate as to haue spent these seauen yeares past in one of your MAIESTIES manifold fruit­lesse still-houses: J durst before this time haue presumed to promise more of my selfe than J will speak of, which disability through my foresaid troubles, now suffer me not to performe in such sorte as I desire, & haue best leasure to doe in my old age, but I hope (the pre­mises considered, my dutifull good will, & affection to my country in giuing incouragement and meanes vnto others by publicatiō of this most learned Author) will be taken in good parte, the rather being patronized by your sacred MAIESTIE, against all ve­nymous darts of the enuious & malicious tungs, of such who be­ing ignorant themselues of all good sciences, would otherwise ma­ligne the perfections & vertuous indeuours of the well deseruing. Thus hoping your MAIESTIE will of your accustomed cle­mencie, accept of this my present as a pledge of my fidelity and du­tifull zeale to your MAIESTIE, humbly crauing pardon for my boldnes; I cease to be further troublesome, daylie praying to the Almighty long to continue your MAIESTIES most prosperous Raigne ouer vs, with great increase of honour, and felicitie, to hi [...] glory, vntill double Nestors yeares.

Your MAIESTIES most loyall subiect, RAPH RABBARDES.

To the right Honourable, Wor­shipfull, and worthy Gentlemen of England, and other learned & indu­strious Students in the secrets of Philosophie.

HAuing reserued the Copie hereof (Right Ho­norable, and gentle Readers) these fortie yeares for many secrete vses, corrected by the most learned of our time, and feeling my self, now through age declining, and otherwise hyndred with troublesome suites in law, which cōstrained me to discontinew these and such other cōmendable prac­tises, for the benefite and defence of my P [...]ince and Coun­trie: I haue thought good to publish the same, the rather for that there are but a few copies left, and those for the most parte corrupted by negligence, or mistaking of igno­rant writers thereof: Being partly encouraged hereunto by the learned Philosopher Seneca, who accompteth it an Act meritorious to preserue or reuiue Science from the Cinders, and to eternize vertuous acts with perpetual me­morie: Finding it strange, that so excellent a Monument as this most rare and learned worke of George Ripley, should so long lye hidden in obscuritie, & passe frō hand to hand a hundreth and fiftie yeares without vtter defacing; see­ing that many notable works published, haue in far shorter time perished. He liued in the time of king Edward the 4. & Richard the vsurper, in great fame & estimation, for his rare knowledge in these secrets: And to vtter his further cōmendatiō in a word; if this his worke be perused with the [Page] eye of iudgement, and practised by those that are experi­enced, I shall not neede to feare the losse of my labour, when some of my Countriemen which cannot attaine vn­to the highest hidden mysterie, shall yet finde many things both pleasant and profitable, diuers wayes seruiceable to Kingdomes, States, and Common weales: And if one amōg tenne thousand can hitt the marke, (whereat the whole worlde hath aymed) we shall not hereafter neede to seeke out the Sandes of Ganges, for that which lyeth hid in the secrets of Ripley: which I offer here to the view of the lear­ned, and haue presumed the publishing hereof, chiefly for the benefite of my Countrey men; and especially to satisfie the often & importunate request of many my learned good friēds, not doubting but that the skilfull wil yeelde me my due▪ howsoeuer the ignorant shal esteeme therof: which if I shall finde to be accepted according to my good meaning, I shall therby be further encouraged to imparte some other rare experiments of Distillations and Fire-workes of great seruice, not hitherto committed in writing or put in prac­tise by any of our nation; although of late some meere toies haue beene highly admired, and extraordinarily rewarded: The charge whereof will be found vtterly lost, when per­fect tryall shall be made of their slender vse and force. To conclude, If this my good intent shalbe answerable to your expectations, I haue obteined the fulnes of my desires.

Yours in the furtherance of Science, Raph Rabbards.

Thomas Newtonus Cestreshyrius.

ALchymicae indagaus arcana Georgius artis
Chremata Riplaeus, rari miranda reliquit
Ingenij monumenta sui, quae nulla vetustas
Exedet, aut putri poterit sepelire veterno.
Illotis nemo manibus mysteria tanta
Tractet, at Hermeticam veneretur [...].
Hanc Plato diuinus foedus vocat, aurea Naso
Vellera, & a vigili mala aurea septa dracone.
Laudibus hanc multis celebrant Mirandula, Lullus,
Geber, Auicenna, Hippocrates, Morienus, Aquinas,
Duns Scotus, Arnaldus, Vincentius, Oldradus, Hermes,
Plinius, Albertus, Ficinus, Cuba, Valescus,
Eustathius, Suidas, Maro, Zosimus, Haly, Baconus,
Rhasis, Aristoteles, Rosinus, Petrus ipse Aponensis,
Complurés (que) alij: cuncti almae huic grata Sophiae
Munera persoluant, linguis (que) animis (que) benigni.
Thomas Newton.

J.D. gent: in praise of the Author, and his Worke.

LOe here a Worke, conteining rare effects,
Repleate with ripest frutes of Ripleys toyle,
Whose mellowed sauour studious mindes directs
T'attaine the skill that may enrich their soile:
And though his Booke be carped at by Zoile,
Yet doth the same comprize such depth of Art,
As makes his fame eternizd by desart.
The learned will (no doubt) delight therein,
And their delight will draw them on to skill:
Admit the simple force it not a pin,
So much the more the wise embrace it will.
Who seekes by Arte to clymbe vp Honors hill,
To such perteynes this precious Stone diuine,
For pease are fitter farre, than Pearle for Swine.
‘Tam Arte, quam Marte.’

P. Bales Gent. in commendation of the Author, and his twelue gates: Orderly set down in the 12. last verses.

GRaunt to me Muses nine, & thou most sacred Apollo,
That in a vaine of a lofty verse, I may be reporter
Of the renowmed skil to ye world by Ripley reuealed:
Which in a Book tituled by the name of Alchymie compoūd
He to the King Edward of England fourth fro the cōquest,
Writt in a verse pithily, with his hād very worthily pēned.
Twelue chapiters did he write, by the first to Calcine he teacheth,
And by the next readily priuie Dissolution handleth:
To Seperate Eliments very plaine by the third he declareth,
And by the fourth (as in mariage) Coniunction ordreth:
To Putrifie most kindly the seede by the 5. he pronounceth:
And by the sixt chapiter true Congelation vttereth.
Thē followeth by the seauēth, how must be Cibation vsed,
But by the next chapiter, duely Sublimation offered,
Ninthly the way measured, for Fermentation aptly,
And by the tenth rightly, there is Exaltation holden,
Infinite in number shewen how to Multiplie leauenthly:
Lastly, the work very fitly by cleanly Proiection endeth.
‘Statuto bono, statuto.’

The Summe of this VVorke, learnedly reduced into these few Verses, by the diuine Poet Palingenius.

HVnc iuuenem Archadium, infidum, nimiúm (que) fugacem,
Prendite, & immersum Stygijs occidite Lymphis
Post Hyales gremio impositum Deus excipiat, quem
Lemnia terrae colit, sublatum (que) in cruce figat:
Tunc sepelite vtero in calido, & dissoluite putrem:
Cuius stillantes artus de corpore nostro
Spiritus egrediens penetrabit: & ordine miro,
Paulatim extinctum nigris reuocabit ab vmbris,
Aurata indutum clamyde, argentó (que) nitentem:
Proijcite hunc demum in prunas, renouabitur alter
Vt Phoenix: & quae tanget, perfecta relinquet
Corpora, naturae [...]eges & foedera vincens:
Mutabit specijs: paupertatém (que) fugabit.

S.E.K. concerning the Philosophers Stone, written to his especiall good friend, G.S. Gent.

THe heauenlie Cope hath in him natures fower,
Two hidden, but the rest to sight appeare:
Wherein the Spermes of all the bodies lower
Most secret are, yet spring forth once a yeare:
And as the earth with water Authors are,
So of his part is drines end of care.
No flood so great, as that which floweth still:
No thing more fixt, than Earth digested thrise:
No winde so fresh, as when it serueth will:
No profit more, then keepe in, and be wise:
No better hap, than drie vp aïre to dust,
For then thou maist leaue of, and sleepe thy lust.
Yet will I warne thee, least thou chaunce to faile,
Sublime thine earth with stinking water erst:
Then in a place where Phoebus onely tayle,
Is seene at midday, see thou mingle best:
For nothing shineth that doth want his light,
Nor doubleth beames, vnlesse it first be bright.
Let no man lead, vnlesse he knowe the way,
That wise men teach, or Adro [...] leadeth in,
Whereof the fi [...]st is large, and easiest pray,
The other hard, and meane but to begin,
For surely these, and no one more is found,
Wherein Apollo will his harp strings sound.
Example learne of GOD, that plaste the Skies,
Reflecting vertues from and t'euerie poynt,
In which the moouer wherein all things lies,
Doth hold the vertues all of euerie ioynt:
And therefore Essence fift may well be said,
Conteining all, and yet himselfe a maid.
Remember also how the Gods began,
And by discent who was to each the Syre:
Then learne their liues and kingdomes if thou can,
Their manners eke, with all their whole attire?
Which if thou doe, and knowe to what effect,
The learned Sophies will thee not reiect.
If this my Doctrine bend not with thy braine,
Then say I nothing, though I sayd too much:
Of truth tis good, will mooued me, not gaine,
To write these lines: yet write I not to such
As catch at crabs, when better frutes appeare,
And want to chuse at fittest time of yeare.
Thou maist (my friend) say, What is this for lore?
I aunswere, Such as auncient Phisicke taught:
And though thou red a thousand bookes before,
Yet in respect of this, they teach thee naught:
Thou maist likewise be blinde, and call me foole,
Yet shall these Rules for euer praise their Schoole.
Sr. E.K.

The Vision of Sir George Ripley, Chanon of Bridlington.

WHen busie at my booke I was vpon a certaine night,
This Vision here exprest appear'd vnto my dimmed sight,
A toade full rudde I saw did drinke the iuice of grapes so fast,
Till ouercharged with the broath, his bowells all to brast,
And after that from poysoned bulke, he cast his venome fell,
For griefe and paine whereof his members all began to swell;
With drops of poysoned sweate approching thus his secret den,
His caue with blasts of fumous ayre, he all bewhited then:
And from the which in space a golden humor did ensue,
Whose falling drops frō high did staine the soile with ruddy hew,
And when his corps, the force of vitall breath began to lacke,
This dying toade became forthwith like coale for colour black:
Thus drowned in his proper Veynes of poysoned flood,
For tear me of eightie dayes and foure he rotting stood:
By tryall then this venome to expell I did desire,
For which J did commit his carkase to a gentle fire:
Which done, a wonder to the sight, but more to be rehearst,
The toade with colours rare through euery side was pearst:
And white appear'd when all the sundry hewes were past:
Which after being tincted, rudde for euermore did last:
Then of the venome handled thus a medicine I did make,
Which venom kills, and saueth such as venome chaunce to take,
Glory be to him the graunter of such secret wayes,
Dominion, and Honour, both with worship and with prayse.


Titulus operis.

HEre beginneth the compound of Alchymie,
Made by a Chanon of Bridlington,
After his learning in Italie,
At Ixninge for time he there did wonne:
In which he declared openly
The secrets both of Moone and Sonne,
How they their kinde to multiplie
In one bodie together must woonne.
VVhich Chanon Sir George Ripley hight,
Exempt from Claustrall obseruance,
For whom ye pray both day and night,
Sith he did labour you to aduaunce,
He turned darknes into light,
Intending to helpe you to happie chaunce,
Giuing counsaile that you liue right,
Doing vnto God no displeasaunce.

A briefe note to the Readers.

THe Wheele that is placed (Gentlemen) last, as the period of this se­cret Worke may of some be challenged (through the diuersitie of Copies) to differ from the first. But herein I assure you I haue ob­serued no lesse care than counsaile, and that of knowen Practisers, whose censures (made more certaine by experience) haue determined all doubts, and made me bolde to publish what followeth for the most aun­cient. If anie literall fault be past, amend it with your pens: if anie carper inueigh against me, defend me with your curtesies: and let them (if they can) condemne by cunning. Farewell.

R. Rabbardes.

The Compound of Alchymie. A most excellent, learned, and wor­thie worke, written to king Edward tht fourth, by Sir George Ripley, Chanon of Bridlington in York-shire, con­tayning twelue gates. The Prologue.

CHilde of this discipline incline to me thine eare
And harkē to my doctrine with al thy diligēce
These words of wisedome in minde doe thou beare,
Which of olde fathers be true in sentence:
Liue cleane in soule, to God doe no offence.
Exalt thee not but rather keepe thee lowe,
Else will thy God in thee no wisdome sowe.
From sinfull doctrine and wicked thought,
The holy spirite doth him withdraw,
Nilling to dwell where sinne is wrought:
Dread God therefore and obey his law:
A righteous man forsooke I neuer sawe:
Neyther his seede begge bread for neede:
In holy scripture this doe I reede.
Make wisdome therefore thy mother to be,
And call on Prudence to be thy friend,
By pathes of truth they will guide thee,
With loue and honesty wheresoeuer thou wend:
Both vertuous to be, curteous and hend:
Pray God therefore that thou maist finde,
Wisedome and Prudence with mouth and minde.
All manner good come with them shall,
And honestie by their hands innumerable,
Then into cumbrance shalt thou not fall,
So be they in riches incomparable:
To worship and profite they will thee able,
To cunning and all manner of grace,
Both here and after thy liues space.
For these benefites which they doe bring,
I meane these vertues of prudence and sapience,
To whome I can compare nothing,
No riches, nor spices of redolence,
Aboue all treasure such is their excellence,
That whatsoeuer earthly precious is,
To them is compared as clay I wis.
Infinite treasure to man they be,
Who vseth them shall friendship haue
With God in heauen and there him see,
After them therefore busily craue,
For bodie and soule they will both saue,
And here in goods thee multiply;
And afore princes thee dignifie.
Thinke how Adam lost his wisedome,
Sampson his might which was so strong:
King Saule also lost his kingdome,
And Dauid was punished for his wrong:
In the Oke by the haire fayre Absolon hong,
King Ezechias by sicknes had punishment,
And many one moe for sinne was shent.
But see how other which liued weele,
And to their God did no offence,
Such chastisement did neuer feele;
But God sheweth euer to them beneuolence,
Enoch and Hely were carried hence,
To Paradice, and orher good liuers were
Of God rewarded in diuerse mannere.
Some had great Fortune, some great cunning,
Some had great peace, some great riches,
Some conquered lands to their great wynning▪
Some were exalted for their great meeknes,
Some other were saued from the cruelnes
Of Tyrants, Lyons, and of the hot furnace,
As Daniel and others in many a place.
Thus to good liuers God sent great grace,
And vnto sinners great and sore punishment,
Some to amend in this life had space,
Some sodainely with fire from heauen were brent,
Sinfull Sodomites for euer were shent,
With Dathan and Abiron with many moe,
Which sunke for sinne to endles woe.
Thus euer sith this world was wrought,
God hath rewarded both euill and good:
Thus if it may rest in thy thought,
From sinfull liuing to change thy moode.
If sinfull people this vnderstoode,
They ought to be afrayde God to offend,
And soone their sinfull liues to amend.
Therefore with God looke thou beginne,
That he by grace may dwell with thee,
So shalt thou best to wisdome winne;
And knowledge of our great priuitie:
Nourish vertues, and from vices flee,
And trusting thou wilt thee well dispose,
Our secrets to thee I will disclose.
Keepe thou them secreate and for me pray,
Looke that thou vse them to Gods pleasure,
Doo good with them what euer thou may;
For time thou shalt this life indure,
That after thy ende thou mayst be sure
In heauen for to rewarded be,
Which God graunt both to me and thee.

The Preface.

O High incomprehensible and glorious Maiestie,
Whose luminous beames obtundeth our specula­tion,
O trinehood in persons ô onehood in deity, t
Of Iherarchiall Iubilists gratulant glorification,
O piteous purifier of soules and pure perpetuation,
O deuiant from danger, ô drawer most debonayre,
From this troublesome vale of vanitie, ô our Exalter.
O power, ô wisdome, ô goodnes inexplicable,
Supporte me, teach me, and be my gouernor,
That neuer my liuing to thee be displicable,
But that I acquite me to thee as true professor,
At this beginning good Lord heare my prayer,
Be nigh with grace for to inforce my will,
Graunt witt that I may mine intent fulfill.
Most curious Cofer and copious of all treasure,
Thou art he from whome all goodnes doth discend,
To man and also to euery creature,
Thine handy-work therefore vouchsafe to defend,
That we no time in liuing here mispend,
With troth here graunt vs our liuing so to winne,
That into no danger of sinfulnes we rinne.
And forasumch as we haue for thy sake
Renounced our wills, the world and fleshly lust,
As thine owne professors vs to thee take,
Sith in thee onely dependeth all our trust;
We can no further; to thee incline we must:
Thy secret treasure vouchsafe vnto vs,
Shew vs thy secrets and to vs be bounteous.
And amongst others which be profest to thee,
I me present as one with humble submission,
Thy seruant beseeching that I may bee,
And true in liuing according to my profession,
In order Chanon Reguler of Bridlington;
Beseeching thee Lord thou wilt me spare,
To thy true seruants thy secrets to declare.
In the beginning when thou mad'st all of nought,
A globous matter and darke vnder confusion,
By him the beginning marueilously was wrought,
Conteyning naturally all things without diuision:
Of which in six dayes he made cleere distinction:
As Genesis apertly doth record.
Then heauen and earth were perfected by his word.
So through his will and power, out of one mas
Confused; was made each thing that being is,
But afore in glory as maker he was,
Now is and shall be without end I wis,
And purified soules vp to his blis
Shall come a principle this may be one,
For the declaring of our precious stone.
For as of one masse was made all thing,
Right so in our practize must it be,
All our secreats of one Image must spring,
As in Philosophers bookes whoso list to see,
Our stone is called the lesse world, one and three;
Magnesa also of sulphure and Mercurie,
Proportionate by nature most perfectlie.
But many one marueileth and maruaile may,
And museth on such a marueilous thing,
What is our stone; sith Philosophers say
To such as euer be it in seeking.
For foules and fisshes to vs doth it bring,
Euery man it hath, and it is in euery place,
In thee in me, and in each thing, time and space?
To this I answere that Mercurie it is I wis,
But not the common called quicksiluer by name,
But Mercurie without which nothing being is,
All Philosophers record and truely saine the same,
But simple searchers putteth them in blame,
Saying they hid it but they be blame worthy,
Which be no Clearkes and meddle with Philosophy.
But though it Mercurie be, yet wisely vnderstand,
Wherein it is, and where thou shalt it seech,
Else I counsell thee take not this work in hand,
For Philosophers flatter fooles with fayre speech:
But listen to me, for truly I will thee teach,
Which is this Mercurie most profitable,
Being to thee nothing deceiueable.
It is more neere in some things than in some;
Therefore take heede what I to thee write
For if knowledge to thee neuer come,
Therefore yet shalt thou me not twite,
For I will truely now thee excite
To vnderstand well Mercuries three,
The keyes which of this science bee.
Raymond his menstrues doth them call,
Without which truly no trueth is done:
But two of them be superficiall,
The third essentiall of Sunne and Moone,
Their properties I will declare right soone,
And Mercurie of mettalls essentiall,
Is the principle of our stone materiall.
In Sunne and Moone our Menstrue is not seene,
It appeareth not but by effect to sight,
That is the stone of which we meene,
Who so our writings conceiueth aright,
It is a soule, a substance bright.
Of Sunne and Moone a subtill influence,
Whereby the earth receiueth resplendence.
For what is Sunne and Moone sayth Auicen,
But earth which is pure white and red:
Take from it the said cleerenes, and then
That earth will stand but in little stead;
The whole compound is called our lead:
The qualitie of clearenes from Sun and Moone dooth come,
These are our menstrues both all and some.
Bodies with the first we calcine naturally
Perfect, but none which been vncleene,
Except one which is vsually
Named by Philosophers the Lyon greene:
He is the meane the Sunne and Moone betweene
Of winning tincture with perfectnes,
As Geber thereunto beareth witnes.
With the second which is an humiditie
Vegitable, reuiuing that earst was dead,
Both principles materials must loosed be
And formalls, els stand they little in stead:
These menstrews therefore know I thee reed,
Without the which neither true calcination
Done may be, not true dissolution.
With the third humiditie most permanent,
Incombustible and vnctuous in his nature,
Hermes tree vnto ashes is brent,
It is our naturall fire most sure,
Our Mercurie, our Sulphur, our tincture pure,
Our soule, our stone borne vp with winde
In the earth ingendred, beare this in minde.
This stone also tell thee I dare,
Is the vapour of mettalls potentiall,
How thou shalt get it, thou must beware,
For inuisible truely is this menstruall,
Howbeit with the second water philosophicall,
By separation of Elements it may appeare
To sight, in forme of water cleare.
If this menstrue by labour exuberate
With it may be made Sulphur of nature,
If it be well and kindly acuate
And circulate into a spirit pure,
Then to dissolue thou must be sure,
Thy base with it in diuers wise,
As thou shalt know by thy practise.
That poynt therefore in his due place,
I will declare with other moe,
If God will graunt me grace and space,
And me preserue in life from woe,
As I thee teach looke thou doe so:
And for the first ground principall,
Vnderstand thy waters menstruall.
And when thou hast made Calcination,
Encreasing not wasting moysture radicall,
Vntill thy base by oft subtilation,
Will lightly flowe as wax vpon mettall,
Then loose it with thy vegetable menstruall,
Till thou haue oyle thereof in colour bright,
Then is that menstrue visible to sight.
And oyle is drawne out in colour of golde,
Or like thereto out of fine red lead,
Which Raymond sayd when he was olde,
Much more than golde would stand in stead:
For when he was for age nigh dead,
He made thereof Aurum potabile,
Which him reuiued as men might see.
For so together may they be circulate,
That is the base oyle and the vegetable menstruall,
So that it be by labour exuberate,
And made by craft a stone celestiall,
Of nature so firie that we it call,
Our Bazeliske or our Cockatrice,
Our great Elixer most of price.
Which as the sight of Bazeliske his obiect
Killeth, so sleyeth it crude Mercurie,
When thereupon he is proiect,
In twinckle of an eye most sodainly,
That Mercurie then teineth permanently,
All bodies to Sunne and Moone perfect,
Thus guide thy base both red and white.
Aurum potabile thus is made,
Of golde not commonly calcinate,
But of our tincture that will not fade,
Out of our base drawn with the menstrue circulate▪
But naturall calcination must algate
Be made, ere thy golde dissolued may bee,
That principle first therefore I will teach thee.
But into chapters this Treatise I will diuide,
In number twelue with due recapitulation;
Superfluous rehearsalls Ile lay aside,
Intending onely to giue true information,
Both of theorick and practick operation:
That by my writing whoso guided will bee,
Of his intent perfectly speede shall hee.
The first chapter shall be of naturall Calcination,
The second of Dissolution secreat and Philosophicall,
The third of our elementall Separation,
The fourth of Coniunction matrimoniall,
The fift of Putrifaction follow shall,
Of Congelation albificate shalbe the sixt,
Then of Cibation the seauenth shall follow next.
The secret of Sublimation the eight shall show;
The ninth shall be of firmentation;
The tenth of our exaltation I trow;
The eleuenth of our meruailous multiplication;
The twelfth of proiection, then recapitulation:
And so this treatize shall take an end,
By the helpe of God as I intend.

Of Calcination. The first Gate.

CAlcination is the purgation of our stone,
Restoring also of his naturall heate,
Of radicall humiditie it looseth none,
Inducing solution into our stone most meete,
After philosophie I you behight
Doo, but not after the common guise,
With Sulphures or Salts preparate in diuers wise.
Neither with Corosiues nor with fire alone,
Neither with vineger nor with water ardent,
Nor with the vapour of leade our stone
Is calcined according to our intent:
All those to calcining which so be bent,
From this hard science withdrawe their hand,
Till they our calcining better vnderstand.
For by such calcination their bodies be shent,
Which minisheth the moysture of our stone:
Therefore when bodies to powder be brent,
Dry as ashes of tree or bone,
Of such calxes then will we none;
For moysture we multiplie radicall,
In calcining minishing none at all.
And for a sure ground of our true calcination,
Worke wittely only kind with kind:
For kind vnto kind hath appetitiue inclination,
Who knoweth not this in knowledge is blind,
He may foorth wander as mist in the wind,
Wotting neuer with profite where to light,
Because he conceaues not our words aright.
Ioyne kind to kind therefore as reason is,
For euery burgeon answers his owne seede,
Man getteth man, a beast a beast I wis,
Further to treate of this it is no neede.
But vnderstand this poynt if thou wilt speede,
Each thing is first calcined in his owne kind;
This well conceaued fruite therein shalt thou finde.
And we make Calx vnctuous both white and red
Of three degrees or our base be perfect,
Fluxible as waxe, els stand they in no sted.
By right long processe as Philosophers doo write,
A yeare we take or more to our respite:
For in lesse space our Calxes will not be made,
Able to teyne with colour that will not fade.
And for thy proportion thou must beware,
For therein maist thou be beguil'd,
Therefore thy work that thou not mare,
Let thy bodie be subtilly fyl'de
With Mercury as much then so subtil'd,
One of the Sunne, two of the Moone,
Till altogether like papp be doone.
Then make the Mercurie foure to the Sun▪
Two to the Moone as it should bee,
And thus thy worke must be begun,
In figure of the Trinitee,
Three of the bodie and of the spirite three,
And for the vnitie of the substance spirituall
One moe than of the substance corporall.
By Raymonds reportory this is true,
Proportion there who list to looke,
The same my Doctor to me did shew,
But three of the spirite Bacon tooke,
To one of the bodie for which I a wooke,
Many a night ere I it wist.
And both be true take which you list.
If the water also be equall in proportion
To the earth, with heate in due measure,
Of them shall spring a new burgeon,
Both white and red in pure tincture,
Which in the fire shall euer indure,
Kill thou the quick the dead reuiue;
Make trinitie vnitie without any striue.
This is the surest and best proportion,
For there is least of the part spirituall,
The better therefore shall be solution,
Than if thou did it with water swall,
Thine earth ouer glutting which loseth all
Take heede therefore to potters loame,
And make thou neuer too neshe thy wombe.
That loame beholde how it tempred is,
The meane also how it is calcinate,
And euer in minde looke thou beare this;
That neuer thine earth with water be suffocate,
Drye vp thy moysture with heate most temperate,
Help Dissolution with moysture of the Moone,
And Congelation with the Sunne, then hast thou doone.
Foure Natures into the fift so shalt thou turne,
Which is a Nature most perfect and temperate,
But hard it is with thy bare foote to spurne
Against a barr of yron, or steele new acuate,
For many doe so which be infatuate,
When they such high things take in hand,
Which they in no wise doe vnderstand.
In egges, in vitriall, or in blood,
What riches wend they there to finde,
If they Philosophy vnderstood,
They would not in working be so blinde;
Golde or siluer to seeke out of kinde:
For like as fire of burning principle is,
So is the principle of gilding gould I wis.
If thou intend therefore for to make
Gold and Siluer by craft of our philosophie,
Thereto neyther egges nor bloud thou take
But Gold and Siluer which naturally
Calcined wisely and not manually,
A new generation will forth bring,
Encreasing their kinde as doth euery thing.
And if it true were that profit might be
In things which be not mettaline,
In which be coulors pleasant to see,
As in bloud, eggs, haire, vrine. or wine,
Or in meane mineralls digd out of the myne,
Yet must that element be putrified and seperate,
And with Elements of perfect bodies be dispousate.
But first of these elements make thou rotacion,
And into water thine earth turne first of all,
Then of thy water make ayre by leuigacion,
And ayre make fier, then Maister I will thee call
Of all our secrets great and small:
The wheele of Elements then canst thou turne about,
Truely conceiuing our writings without doubt.
This done, goe backwards turning the wheele againe,
And into water turne thy fire anone,
Ayre into earth, els labourest thou in vaine,
For so to temperment is brought our stone,
And Natures contractions foure are made one,
After they haue three times been circulate,
And also thy base perfectly consumate.
Thus vnder the moysture of the Moone,
And vnder the temperate heate of the Sunne,
Thine Elements shalbe incinerate soone,
And then thou hast the maistrie wonne:
Thanke God thy worke was then so begunne,
For there thou hast one token trewe,
Which first in blacknes to thee will shewe.
The head of the Crowe that token call wee,
And some men call it the Crowes bill;
Some call it the ashes of Hermes tree,
And thus they name it after their will:
Our Toade of the earth which eateth his fill,
Some nameth it by which it is mortificate
The spirit with venome intoxicate.
But it hath names I say to thee infinite,
For after each thing that blacknes is to sight,
Named it is till time it waxeth white,
Then hath it names of more delight,
After all things that been full white,
And the red likewise after the same,
Of all red things doth take the name.
At the first gate now art thou in,
Of the Philosophers Castell where they dwell,
Proceede wisely that thou may winne
In at moe gates of that Castell,
Which Castell is round as any bell,
And gates it hath eleuen yet moe,
One is conquered, now to the second goe.
The end of the first gate.

Of Dissolution. The second Gate.

OF Dissolution now will I speake a word or two,
Which sheweth out what erst was hid frō sight,
And maketh intenuate things that were thicke also,
By vertue of our first menstrue cleare and bright,
In which our bodies eclipsed been of light,
And of their hard and drye compaction subtilate,
Into their owne first matter kindly retrogradate.
One in gender they be, and in number two,
Whose Father is the Sunne, the Moone the Mother,
The Mouer is Mercurie, these and no moe
Be our Magnesia, our Adropp, and none other
Things here be, but onely sister and brother,
That is to meane agent and patient,
Sulphure and Mercury coessentiall to our intent.
Betwixt these two equalitie contrarious,
Ingendred is a meane most marueilously,
Which is our Mercury and menstrue vnctuous,
Our secreat Sulphure working inuisibly,
More fiercely than fire burning the bodie,
Dissoluing the bodie into water minerall,
Which night for darknes in the North we doe call.
But yet I trow thou vndestandst not vtterly,
The very secreat of the Philosophers Dissolution,
Therefore conceiue me I counsell thee wittily,
For the truth I will tell thee without delusion:
Our solution is cause of our Congelation;
For Dissolution on the one side corporall,
Causeth Congelation on the other side spirituall.
And we dissolue into water which wetteth no hand,
For when the earth is integrately incinerate,
Then is the water congealed; this vnderstand
For the elements be so together concatenate,
That when the bodie is from his first forme alterate,
A new forme is induced immediatly,
For nothing being without all forme is vtterly.
And heere a secret to thee I will disclose,
Which is the ground vnto our secrets all,
And it not knowne thou shalt but lose
Thy labour and costs both great and small,
Take heed therefore in error that thou not fall,
The more thine earth, and the lesse thy water be,
The rather and better solucion shalt thou see.
Behold how yce to water doth relent,
And so it must for water it was before,
Right so againe to water our earth is went,
And water thereby congeald for euermore,
For after all Philosophers that euer were bore,
Each mettall was once water mynerall,
Therefore with water they turne to water all.
In which water of kinde occasionate,
Of qualities been repugnant and diuersitie,
Things into things must therefore be rotate,
Vntill diuersitie be brought to perfect vnitie:
For Scripture recordeth when the earth shall be
Troubled, and into the deepe Sea shall be cast,
Mountaines and bodies likewise at the last.
Our bodies be likened conueniently
To mountaines, which after high Planets we name,
Into the deepnes therefore of Mercurie
Turne them, and keepe thee out of blame,
For then shalt thou see a noble game,
How all shall become powder as soft as silke,
So doth our rennit kindly kurd vp our milke.
Then hath the bodies their first forme lost,
And others been induced immediatly,
Then hast thou well bestowed thy cost:
Whereas others vncunning must goe by,
Not knowing the secrets of our philosohie:
Yet one poynt more I must tell thee,
How each bodie hath dimensions three.
Altitude, Latitude, and also profunditie,
By which all gates turne we must our wheele,
Knowing that thine entrance in the West shall be,
Thy passages forth to the North if thou doo weele,
And there thy lights lose their lights each deele;
For there thou must abide by ninetie nights
In darknes of purgatorie withouten lights.
Then take thy course vp to the East anone,
By colours passing variable in manifold wise,
And then be winter and vere nigh ouergone,
To the East therefore thine ascending deuise,
For there the Sunne with daylight doth vprise
In sommer, and there disport thee with delight,
For there thy worke shall become perfect white.
Foorth from the East into the South ascend,
And set thee downe there in the chaire of fire,
For there is haruest, that is to say an end
Of all this worke after thine owne desire,
There shineth the Sunne vp in his Hemisphere,
After the Eclipses in rednes with glorie,
As king to raigne vpon all mettals and Mercurie.
And in one glasse must be done all this thing,
Like to an Egge in shape and closed weele,
Then must thou know the measure of firing,
The which vnknowne thy worke is lost each deele:
Let neuer thy glasse be hotter than thou maist feele
And suffer still in thy bare hand to hold,
For feare of losing, as Philosophers haue told.
Yet to my doctrine furthermore attend,
Beware thy glasse thou neuer open ne meue
From the beginning till thou haue made an end;
If thou doo contrarie, thy worke may neuer cheue.
Thus in this Chapter which is but briefe,
I haue thee taught thy true solution:
Now to the third gate goe, for this is won.
The end of the second gate.

Of Seperation. The third gate.

SEperation doth each part from other diuide,
The subtile from the grosse, the thick frō the thinn
But Seperation manuall looke thou set a side,
For that pertaines to fooles that little good doth winn,
But in our Seperation Nature doth not blinn,
Making diuision of qualities elementall,
Into a fift degree till they be turned all.
Earth is turned into water vnder black and bloe,
And water after into ayre vnder very white,
Then Aire into fire, elements there be no moe,
Of these is made our stone of great delight,
But of this Seperation much more must we write,
And Seperation is called by Philosophers definition,
Of the saide foure elements terraptatiue dispersion.
Of this Seperation I finde a like figure,
Thus spoken by the Prophet in the Psalmodie,
God brought out of a stone a flood of water pure,
And out of the hardest rock oyle abundantly,
So out of our stone precious if thou be witty,
Oyle incombustable, and water thou shalt draw,
And there abouts at the coale thou needst not to blow.
Doe this with heate easie and nourishing,
First with moyst fire and after that with drie,
The flegme with patience out drawing,
And after that the other Natures wittely
Drye vp thine earth vntill it be thirsty,
By Calcination else labourest thou in vaine,
And then make it drink vp the moysture againe.
Seperation thus must thou oftetimes make,
Thy waters diuiding into partes two,
So that the subtile from the grosse thou take,
Till earth remaine beneath in colours bloe,
That earth is fixed to abide all woe,
The other parte is spirituall and flying,
But thou must turne them all into one thing.
Then oyle and water with water shall distill,
And through her helpe receiue mouing,
Keepe well these two that thou not spill
Thy worke for lack of due closing,
And make thy stopple of glasse melting,
The topp of thy vessell together with it,
Then Philosopher-like it is vp shit.
The water wherewith thou mayst reuiue the stone,
Looke thou distill before thou worke with it,
Oftentimes by it selfe alone,
And by this sight thou shalt wit,
From feculent feces when it is quit:
For some men can with Saturne it multiplie,
And other substance which we defie.
Distill it therefore till it be clene
And thinne like water as it should be,
As heauen in colour bright and shene,
Keping both figure and ponderositee,
Therewith did Hermes moysten his tree:
Within his glasse he made it grow vpright,
With flowers discoloured beautifull to sight.
This water is like to the venymous Tire,
Wherewith the mighty triacle is wrought,
For it is poyson most strong of Ire,
A stronger poyson cannot be thought,
At Pothecaries often therefore it is sought,
But no man by it shalbe intoxicate,
From the time it is into medicine elixerate.
For then as is the Triacle true,
It is of poyson most expulsiue,
And in his working doth marueiles shew,
Preseruing many from death to life,
But looke thou meddle it with no corosiue,
But choose it pure and quick rinning,
If thou thereby wilt haue winning.
It is a marueilous thing in kinde,
And without it can nothing be done,
Therefore Hermes called it his winde,
For it is vp flying from Sunne and Moone,
And maketh our stone flie with it soone,
Reuiuing the dead and giuing life,
To Sunne and Moone, husband and wife.
Which if they were not by craft made quick,
And their fatnes with water drawne out,
And so the thinne disseuered from the thick,
Thou shouldst neuer bring this worke about:
If thou wilt therefore speede without doubt,
Rayse vp the birds out of their neast,
And after againe bring them to rest.
Water with water accord will and ascend,
And spirit with spirit, for they be of one kinde,
Which after they be exalted make to discend,
So shalt thou deuide that, which Nature erst did binde,
Mercury essentiall turning into winde,
Without which naturall and subtill Seperation,
May neuer be complete profitable generation.
Now to helpe thee in at this gate,
The last secreat I will declare to thee,
Thy water must be seauen times sublimate,
Else shall no kindly Dissolution bee,
Nor putrifying shalt thou none see;
Like liquid pitch, nor colours appearing
For lack of fire within the glasse working.
Foure fires there be which thou must vnderstand,
Naturall, innaturall, against Nature also,
And elementall which doth burne the brand:
These foure fires vse we and no moe,
Fire against nature must doe thy bodie woe,
This is our Dragon as I thee tell,
Fiercely burning as the fire of hell.
Fire of nature is the third menstruall,
That fire is naturall in each thing;
But fire occasionate, we call vnnaturall,
As heate of ashes, and balnes for putrifying:
Without these fires thou maist naught bring
To Putrifaction, for to be seperate,
Thy matters together proportionate.
Therefore make fire thy glasse within,
Which burneth the bodie much more than fire
Elementall, if thou wilt winne
Our secrets according to thy desire:
Then shall thy seeds both rot and spire
By helpe of fire occasionate,
That kindly after they may be seperate.
Of Seperation the Gate must thus be wonne,
That furthermore yet thou maist proceed
Towards the Gate of secret Coniunction,
Into the Castle which will thee inner leed:
Doe after my counsell if thou wilt speed,
With two strong lockes this Gate is shir,
As consequently thou shalt well wit.
The end of the third Gate.

Of Coniunction. The fourth Gate.

AFter the Chapiter of naturall Seperation,
By which the elemēts of our stone disseuered be,
The chapter here followeth of secret Coniunction,
Which Natures repugnant ioyneth to perfect vnitie,
And so them knitteth that none from others may flie,
When they by fire shalbe examinate,
They be togethers so surely coniungate.
And therefore Philosophers giue this definition
Saying this Coniunction is nothing els
But of disseuered qualities a copulation,
Or of principles a coequation as others tells:
But some men with Mercurie that Pothecaries sells
Medleth bodies, which cannot diuide
Their matter, and therefore they slip aside.
For vntill the time the soule be seperate
And cleansed from his originall sinne
With the water, and throughly spiritualizate,
The true Coniunction maist thou neuer begin:
Therefore the soule first from the bodie twyne,
Then of the corporall part and of the spirituall.
The soule shall cause coniunction perpetuall.
Of two Coniunctions Philosophers mencion make,
Grosse when the bodie with Mercury is reincrudate▪
But let this passe, and to the second heede take,
Which as I saide is after Seperation celebrate,
In which the parties be left with least to colligate,
And so promoted vnto most perfect temperance,
That neuer after amongst them may be repugnance.
Thus causeth Seperation true Coniunction to be had,
Of water and ayre, with earth and fire,
But that each element into other may be lad,
And so abide for euer to thy desire,
Doe as doe dawbers with clay or myre,
Temper them thick and make them not too thinne,
So doe vpdrying, thou shalt the rather winne.
But manners there be of our Coniunction three,
The first is called by Philosophers Diptatiue,
The which betwixt the agent and patient must be,
Male and female, Mercury, and Sulphure viue,
Matter, and forme, thinne, and thick to thrine,
This lesson will helpe thee without any doubt,
And our Coniunction truly to bring about.
The second manner is called Triptatiue,
Which is Coniunction, made of things three,
Of bodie, soule and spirit, that they not striue,
Which trinitie thou must bring to vnitee,
For as the soule to the spirite the bond must bee;
Right so the bodie the soule to him must knit,
Out of thy minde let not this lesson flit.
The third manner and also the last of all,
Foure Elements together which ioyne to abide,
Tetraptatiue certainely Philosophers doe it call,
And specially Guido de Montano whose fame goeth wide,
And therefore in most laudable maner this tide,
In our Coniunction foure Elements must aggregate
In due proportion, which first a sunder were seperate.
Therefore like as the woman hath veines fifteene,
And the man but fiue to the act of their secunditie,
Required in our Coniunction first I meene,
So must the man our Sunne haue of his water three,
And nine his wife, which three to him must bee:
Then like with like will ioy haue for to dwell,
More of Coniunction me needeth not to tell.
This chapiter I will conclude right soone therefore,
Grosse Coniunction charging thee to make but one,
For seldome haue strumpets children of them ybore,
And so thou shalt neuer come by our stone,
Without thou let the woman lig alone,
That after she once haue conceiued of the man,
Her Matrix be shut vp from all other than.
For such as adde euer more crude to crude,
Opening their vessell letting their matters keele,
The sparme conceiued they nourish not but delude
Themselues, and sp [...]ll their worke each deele,
If thou therefore haue lift to doe weele,
Close vp thy Matrix and nourish the seede,
With heat continual and temperate if thou wilt speed.
And when thy vessell hath stood by moneths fiue,
And clowdes and Eclipses be passed each one,
The light appearing, encrease thy heate then beliue,
Vntill bright and shining in whitenes be thy Stone▪
Then maist thou open thy glasse anone,
And feede thy childe which is ybore,
With milke and meate ay more and more.
For now both moist and drie is so contemperate,
That of the water earth hath receiued impression,
Which neuer (after that) asunder may be seperate;
And right so water to earth hath giuen ingression,
That both together to dwell haue made profession,
And water of earth hath purchased a retentiue,
They foure made one neuer more to striue.
Thus in two things all our intent doth hing,
In drie and moist, which be contraries two▪
In drie, that it the moyst to flixing bring,
In moist, that it giue liquefaction to the earth also:
Then of them thus a temperment may foorth goe,
A temperment not so thicke as the bodie is,
Neither so thinne as water withouten mis.
Loosing and knitting thereof be principles two
Of this hard science, and poles most principall;
Howbeit that other principles be many moe,
As shining fanes, which show I shall:
Proceede therefore vnto another wall
Of this strong Castle of our wisdome,
That in at the fift Gate thou maist come.
The end of the fourth Gate.

Of Putrifaction. The fift Gate.

NOw we begin the chapter of Putrifaction,
Without which pole no seed may multiply,
Which must be done only by continual action
Of heate in the bodie, moyst not manually:
For bodies els may not be altred naturally,
Sith Christ doth witnes, without the graine of wheate
Dye in the ground, encrease maist thou none get.
And in likewise without the matter putrifie,
It may in no wise truly be alterate,
Neither thy Elements may be diuided kindly,
Nor the coniunction of them perfectly celebrate:
That thy labor therefore be not frustrate,
The priuitie of our putrifying well vnderstand,
Or euer thou take this worke in hand.
And Putrifaction may thus defined bee
After Philosophers sayings, to be of bodies the sleying;
And in our Compound a diuision of things three,
The killed bodies into corruption foorth leading,
And after vnto regeneration them abling,
For things being in the earth, without doubt
Be engendred of rotation of the heauens about.
And therefore like as I haue sayd before,
Thine Elements commixt and wisely coequate,
Thou keepe in temperate heate eschewing euermore,
That they by violent heat be not incinerate
To powder drye vnprofitably Rubificate,
But into powder black as a crowes bill,
With heate of Balne or else of our dunghill.
Vntill the time that nights be passed ninetie,
In moyst heate keepe them for any thing.
Soone after by blacknes thou shalt espie
That they draw fast to putrifying,
Which thou shalt after many colours bring
To perfect whitenes by patience easily,
And so thy seede in his nature shall multiplie.
Make each the other then to halfe and kisse,
And like as children to play them vp and downe▪
And when their shirts are filed with pisse,
Then let the woman to wash be bowne,
Which oft for faintnes will fall in a swowne,
And dye at the last with her children all,
And goe to purgatorie to purge their filth originall.
When they be there, by little and little increase
Their paines, by heat, aye more and more,
The fire from them let neuer cease.
And so that thy furnace be surely apt therefore,
Which wise men call an Athenore,
Conseruing heat required most temperatelie,
By which thy matter doth kindly putrifie.
Of this principle speaketh sapient Guido,
And sayth by rotting dyeth the compound corporall,
And then after Morien and other moe,
Vpriseth againe regenerate simple and spirituall,
And were not heate and moysture continuall,
Sparme in the wombe might haue none abiding,
And so there should no fruite thereof vpspring.
Therefore at the beginning our stone thou take,
And burie each one in other within their graue,
Then equally betwixt them a marriage make,
To ligge together sixe weekes let them haue,
Their seede conceiued, kindly to nourish and saue,
From the ground of their graue not rising that while,
Which secreat point doth many a one beguile.
This time of conception with easie heate abide,
The blacknes shewing shall tell thee when they dye,
For they togeather like liquid pitch that tide,
Shall swell and burble, settle and putrifie,
Shining colours therin thou shalt espie,
Like to the rainebow marueilous to sight,
The Water then beginneth to drye vpright.
For in moyst bodies heate working temperate,
Ingendreth blacknes, first of all which is,
Of kindly Coniunction the token assignate,
And of true putrifying: remember this,
For then perfectly to alter thou canst not misse,
And thus by the gate of blacknes thou must come in,
The light of Paradice in whitenes if thou wilt win.
For first the Sunne in his vprising obscurate
Shalbe, and passe the waters of Noes flood,
On earth which was an hundreth dayes continuate
And fiftie, away ere all these waters yood;
Right so our waters (as wisemen vnderstood)
Shall passe, that thou with Dauid may say,
Abierunt in sicco flumina: beare this away.
Soone after that Noah planted his vineyard,
Which royally flourished, and brought foorth grapes anone,
After which space thou shalt not be afeard,
For in likewise shal follow the flourishing of our stone:
And soone after that xxx. dayes be gone,
Thou shalt haue grapes right as Rubie read,
Which is our Adropp, our Vcifer, and our red lead.
For like as soules after paines transitorie
Be brought to Paradice, where euer is ioyfull life;
So shall our Stone (after his darknes in Purgatorie)
Be purged, and ioyned in Elements withouten strife,
Reioyce the whitenes and beautie of his wife,
And passe from darknes of purgatorie to light
Of Paradice, in whitenes Elixer of great might.
And that thou maist the rather to Putrifaction win,
This example thou take to thee for a true conclusion,
For all the secret of Putrifaction resteth therein;
The hart of oke that hath of water continuall infusion
Will not soone putrifie, I tell thee without delusion:
For though it in water lay 100. yeares and more.
Yet shouldst thou finde it sound as ere it was before.
But and thou keepe it sometime wet & sometime drie,
As thou maist see in timber by vsuall experiment,
By processe of time that oke shall putrifie;
And so euen likewise according to our intent,
Sometime our tree must with the Sunne be brent,
And then with water we must it keele,
That by this meanes to rotting we may bring it weele.
For now in wet, and now againe in drie,
And now in heate, and now againe in colde
To be, shall cause it soone to putrifie,
And so shalt thou bring to rotting thy golde:
Intreate thy bodies as I haue thee tolde,
And in thy putrifying, with heate be not too swift,
Least in the ashes thou seeke after thy thrift.
Therefore thy water out of the earth thou drawe,
And make the soule therewith for to ascend;
Then downe againe into the earth it throwe,
That they oft times so ascend and descend:
From violent heate and sudden colde defend
Thy glasse, and make thy fire so temperate,
That by the sides the matter be not vitrificate.
And be thou wise in choosing of the matter,
Meddle with no salts, sulphurs, nor meane mineralls:
For whatsoeuer any worker to thee doth clatter,
Our Sulphur and our Mercury been onely in metttalls,
Which oyles and waters some men them calls,
Foules and birds, with other names many one,
Because that fooles should neuer know our stone.
For of this world our stone is called the sement
Which moued by craft as nature doth require,
In his encrease shall be full opulent,
And multiply his kinde after thine owne desire,
Therefore if God vouchsafe thee to inspire,
To know the truth, and fansies to eschew
Like vnto thee in riches shall be but few.
But many men be moou'd to worke after their fantasie,
In many subiects in which be tinctures gay:
Both white and red diuided manually
To sight, but in the fire they flyeaway:
Such breake pottes and glasses day by day,
Enpoysoning themselues and loosing their sights,
With odours, smoakes, and watching vp by nights.
Their clothes be baudy and worne thread bare,
Men may them smell for multipliers where they goe,
To file their fingers with corosiues they doo not spare,
Their eyes be bleard, their cheekes leane and blowe,
And thus for had I wist they suffer losse and woe:
And such when they haue lost that was in their purse,
Then doo they chide, and Philosophers sore doo curse.
To see their houses it is a noble sport,
What furnaces, what glasses there be of diuers shapes,
What salts, what powders, what oyles, waters fort,
How eloquently de Materia prima their tungs do clap,
And yet to finde the truthe they haue no hap;
Of our Mercurie they meddle & of our sulphure viue,
Wherein they dote, and more and more vnthriue.
For all the while they haue Philosophers bene,
Yet could they neuer know what was our Stone,
Some sought it in dung, in vrine, some in wine,
Some in starre slyme (for thing it is but one),
In blood, in egges: some till their thrift was gone,
Diuiding Elements, and breaking manie a pot,
Sheards multiplying, but yet they hit it not.
They talke of the red man and of his white wife,
That is a speciall thing, and of the Elixers two,
Of the Quintessence, and of the Elixer of life,
Of honie, Celidonie, and of Secondines also,
These they diuide into Elements, with others moe;
No multipliers, but Philosophers called will they bee,
Which naturall Philosophie did neuer read nor see.
This fellowship knoweth our Stone right weele,
They thinke them richer than is the King,
They will him help, he shall not faile
Fraunce for to winne a wondrous thing,
The holy Crosse home will they bring,
And if the King were prisoner ytake,
Right soone his raunsome would they make.
A meruaile it is that Westminster Kerke,
To the which these Philosophers doo much haunt,
Since they can so much riches werke
As they make boast of and auaunt,
Drinking daylie at the wine a due taunt,
Is not made vp perfectly at once;
For truly it lacketh yet many stones.
Fooles doo follow them at the taile,
Promoted to riches weening to bee;
But will you heare, what worship and auaile
They winne in London that noble Citie?
With siluer maces (as you may see)
Sergeants awaiteth on them each bowre,
So been they men of great honour.
Sergeants seeke them from streete to streete,
Merchants and Goldsmiths lay after them watch,
That well is him that with them may meete,
For the great aduantage that they doe catch,
They hunt about as doth a bratch,
Weening to winne so great treasure,
That euer in riches they shall endure.
Some would catch their goods againe,
And some more good would aduenture,
Some for to haue would be full faine
Of ten pounds one, I you ensure,
Some which haue lent without measure
Their goods, and be with pouertie clad,
To catch a noble, would be full glad.
But when the Sergeants doth them arrest,
Their pautners be stuffed with Paris balls,
Or with signets of Saint Martins at the least;
But as for money it is pist against the walls:
Then be they led (as well for them befalls)
To Newgate or Ludgate as I you tell,
Because they shall in safegard dwell.
Where is my money become, saith one?
And where is mine, saith he and he?
But will you heare how subtill they be anone
In answering, that they excused be?
Saying, of our Elixers robbed be we,
Else might we haue paid you all your golde,
Though it had been more by tenne folde.
And then their Creditors they flatter so,
Promising to worke for them againe
In right short space the Elixers two,
Doting the Merchants that they be faine
To let them goe, but euer in vaine;
They worke so long, till at the last,
They be againe in prison cast.
If any them aske, why they be not ritch?
They say they can make fine golde of tinne,
But he (say they) may surely swimme the ditch,
Which is vpholden by the chinne;
We haue no stock, therefore may we not winne,
Which if we had, we would soone werck
Inough to finish vp Westminster Kerck.
And some of them be so deuout,
They will not dwell out of that place;
For there they may withouten doubt
Doe what them list to their solace,
The Archdeacon is so full of grace,
That if they blesse him with their crosse,
He forceth little of other mens losse.
And when they there sit at the wine,
These Monkes they say haue manie a pound,
Would God (saith one) that some were mine.
Yet care away, let the cup goe round;
Drinke on saith another, the meane is found,
I am a maister of that Arte,
I warrant vs we shall haue part.
Such causeth Monkes euill to doone,
To waste their wages through their dotage,
Some bringeth a mazer, and some a spoone,
Their Philosophers giueth them such comage,
Behighting them winning with domage,
A pound for a penie at the least againe;
And so faire promises make fooles faine.
A royall medicine one vpon twelue,
They promise them thereof to haue,
Which they could neuer for them-selue
Yet bring about, so God me saue:
Beware such Philosophers no man depraue,
Which helpe these Monkes to riches so,
In thread bare coates that they must goe.
The Abbot ought well to cherish this companie,
For they can teach his Monkes to liue in pouertie,
And to goe cloathed and moneyed religiouslie,
As did Saint Bennet, eschuing superfluitie,
Easing them also of the ponderositie
Of their purses, with pounds so aggrauate,
Which by Philosophie be now alleuiate.
Lo who so medleth with this rich companie,
Great boast of their winning they may make:
For they shall reape as much by their Philosophie,
As they of the taile of an ape, can take:
Beware therefore for Iesus sake,
And meddle with nothing of great cost,
For if thou doe, it is but lost.
These Philosophers (of which I spake before)
Meddle and blunder with manie a thing,
Running in errours euer more and more,
For lacke of true vnderstanding:
But like must like alwaies forth bring,
So hath God ordained in euerie kinde;
Would Iesus they would beare this in minde.
Weene they of a Nettle to haue a Rose,
Or of an Elder to haue an apple sweete:
Alas, that wisemen their goods should lose,
Trusting such lorrells when they them meete,
Which say our Stone is troden vnder feete,
And maketh them vile things to distill,
Till all their howses with stench they fill.
Some of them neuer learned a word in Schooles,
Should such by reason vnderstand Philosophie?
Be they Philosophers? Nay, they be fooles:
For their workes proue them vnwittie,
Meddle not with them, if thou be happie;
Least with their flatterie they so thee till,
That thou agree vnto their will.
Spend not thy money away in waste,
Giue not to euery spirit credence,
But first examine, groape, and taste;
And as thou proouest, so put thy confidence,
But euer beware of great expence:
And if the Philosopher doe liue vertuouslie,
The better thou maist trust his Philosophie.
Prooue him first, and him appose
Of all the secrets of our Stone;
Which if he knowe not, thou need not to lose,
Meddle thou no further, but let him gone,
Make he neuer so piteous a mone;
For then the Fox can fagge and faine,
When he would to his pray attaine.
If he can answere as a Clarke,
Howbeit he hath not prooued it indeed,
And thou then help him to his warke;
If he be vertuous I hold it meed,
For he will thee quite if euer he speed,
And thou shalt knowe by a little anone,
If he haue knowledge of our Stone.
One thing, one glasse, one furnace, and no moe,
Behold this principle if he doe take,
And if he doe not, then let him goe,
For he shall neuer thee rich man make;
Timely it is better thou him forsake,
Than after with losse and variance,
And other manner of displeasance.
But if God fortune thee to haue
This Science by doctrine which I haue told,
Discouer it not whosoeuer it craue,
For fauour, feare, siluer, or gold;
Be no oppressor, letcher nor boaster bold:
Serue thy God, and help the poore among,
If thou this life lift to continue long.
Vnto thy selfe thy secrets euer keepe
From sinners, which haue not God in dread,
But will thee cast in prison deepe,
Till thou them teach to doe it indeed,
Then slaunder on thee shall spring and spread,
That thou doest coyne then will they say,
And so vndoe thee for euer and aye.
And if thou teach them this cunning,
Their sinfull liuing for to maintaine,
In hell therefore shalbe thy woonning,
For God of thee and them will take disdaine:
As thou nought couldst therefore thee faine,
That bodie and soule thou maist both saue,
And here in peace thy liuing to haue.
Now in this Chapter I haue thee taught,
How thou thy bodies must putrifie,
And so to guide thee that thou be not caught,
And put to durance losse or villanie
My doctrine therefore remember wittely,
And passe forth towards the sixt Gate,
For thus the fift is triumphate.
The end of the fift Gate.

Of Congelation. The sixt Gate.

OF Congelation I need not much to write:
But what it is, I will to thee declare;
It is of soft things induration of colour white,
And confixation of spirits which flying are;
How to congeale, he needeth not much to care,
For Elements will knit together soone,
So that Putrifaction be kindly doone.
But Congelations be made in diuers wise,
Of spirits and bodies dissolued to water cleare,
Of salts also dissolued twice or thrise,
And then congeald into a fluxible matter;
Of such congealing, fooles fast doo clatter,
And some dissolueth diuiding manuallie
Elements them after congealing to powder drie.
But such congealing is not to our desire,
For vnto ours it is contrarious,
Our congelation dreadeth not the fire:
For it must euer stand in it vnctuous,
And it is also a tincture so bounteous,
Which in the aire congealed will not relent
To water, for then our worke were shent.
Moreouer congeale not into so hard a stone
As glasse or christall, which melteth by fusion,
But so that it like waxe will melt anone
Withouten blast: and beware of delusion,
For such congealing accordeth not to our conclusion
As will not flowe, but runne to water againe
Like salt congealed, then labourest thou in vaine.
Which congelation auaileth vs not a deale,
It longeth to multipliers, congealing vulgarly:
If thou therefore list to doe weele
(Sith the medicine shall neuer flowe kindly,
Neither congeale, without thou first it putrifie)
First purge, and then fixe the elements of our stone,
Till they together congeale and flowe anone.
For when thy matter is made perfectly white,
Then will the spirit with the bodie congealed be:
But of that time thou maist haue long respite
Or it congeale like pearles in sight to thee,
Such congel [...]n be thou glad to see,
And after lik [...] graines red as blood,
Richer than any worldly good.
The earthly grosenes therefore first mortified,
In moysture blacknes ingendred is;
This principle may not be denied,
For naturall Philosophers so sayne ywis:
Which had, of whitenes thou maist not mis;
And into whitenes if thou congeale it once,
Then hast thou a stone most precious of all stones.
And by the drie like as the moist did putrifie,
Which caused in colour blacknes to appeare,
Right so the moyst congealed by the drie,
Ingendreth whitenes shining by night full cleare,
And drines proceedeth as whiteth the matter,
Like as in blacknes moysture doth him shew
By colours variant alwayes new and new.
The cause of all this is heate most temperate,
Working and mouing the matter continually,
And thereby also the matter is alterate,
Both inward and outward substantially,
Not as doo fooles to sight sophistically:
But in euerie part all fire to endure,
Fluxible, fixt, and stable in tincture.
As Phisicke determineth of each digestion,
First done in the stomach in which is drines,
Causing whitenes without question,
Like as the second digestion causeth rednes,
Complete in the liuer by heate in temperatenes,
Right so our Stone by drines and by heate
Digested is to white and red compleate.
But here thou must another secret knowe,
How the Philosophers childe in the ayre is borne,
Busie thee not too fast at the coale to blowe,
And take this neither for mocke nor scorne,
But trust me truly, else is all thy worke forlorne,
Without thine earth with water reuiued bee,
Our true congealing shalt thou neuer see.
A soule it is betwixt heauen and earth being,
Arising from the earth as ayre with water pure,
And causing life in euerie liuely thing,
Incessable running vpon our foure folde nature,
Enforcing to better him with all his cure,
Which ayre is the fire of our Philosophie,
Named now oyle, now water mysticallie.
And this meane ayre which oyle or water we call,
Our fire, our oyntment, our spirit, and our Stone,
In which one thing we ground our wisedomes all,
Goeth neither in nor out alone,
Nor the fire but the water anone:
First it out leadeth, and after it bringeth it in,
As water with water which will not lightly twin.
And so may water only our water meeue,
Which mouing causeth both death and life
And water to water doth kindly cleeue
Without repugnance or anie strife,
Which water to fooles is nothing rife,
Being of the kinde withouten doubt
Of the spirit, called water and leader out.
And water is the secret and life of euery thing,
That is of substance in this world yfound,
For of water each thing hath his beginning,
As showeth in women when they shalbe vnbound
By water, which passeth before if all be sound,
Called Albien, first from them running,
With greeuous throwes before their childing.
And truly that is the cause most principall
Why Philosophers charge vs to be patient,
Till time the water be dried to powder all
With nourishing heate, continuall, not violent:
For qualities be contrarious of euerie element,
Till after blacke in white be made an vnion
Of them for euer, congeald without diuision.
And furthermore, the preparation of this conuersion:
From thing to thing, from one state to another,
Is done onely by kindly and discreete operation
Of Nature, as is of sperme within the mother;
For sperme and heate, are as sister and brother,
Which be conuerted in themselues as nature can,
By action and passion at last to perfect man:
For as the bodily part by nature was combyn [...]te
Into man, is such as the beginner was▪
Which though it thus frō thing to thing was alterate
Not out of kinde, to mixe with other kinde did passe,
And so our matter spermaticall within our glasse,
Within it selfe must turne from thing to thing▪
By heate most temperate only it nourishing.
An other example naturall I may thee tell,
How the substance of an egge by nature is wrought
Into a Chicken not passing out of the shell,
A plainer example could I not haue thought,
And their conuersions be made till forth be brought
From state to state, the like by like in kinde,
With nourishing heate: onely beare this in minde.
Another example here also thou maist read
Of vegetable things, taking consideration,
How euerie thing groweth of his owne seede
Through heate and moysture, by naturall operation;
And therfore myneralls be nourished by ministration
Of moysture radicall, which there beginning was,
Not passing their kinde within one glas.
There we them turne from thing to thing againe,
Into their mother the water when they goe:
Which principle vnknowen, thou labourest in vaine.
Then all is sperme; and things there be no moe
But kinde with kinde in number two,
Male and female, agent and patient,
Within the matrix of the earth most orient.
And these be turned by heate from thing to thing
Within one glasse, and so from state to state,
Vntill the time that nature doth them bring
Into one substance of the water regenerate:
And so the sperme with his kinde is alterate,
Able in likenes his kinde to multiply,
As doth in kinde all other things naturally.
In the time of this said proces naturall,
While that the sperme conceiued is growing,
The substance is nourished with his owne menstruall,
Which water only out of the earth did spring,
Whose colour is greene in the first showing:
And from that time the Sunne hid [...]th his light,
Taking his course throughout the North by night.
The sayd menstruall is (I say to thee in counsell)
The blood of our greene Lyon and not of vitriall▪
Dame Venus can the troth of this thee tell,
At the beginning, to counsell if thou her call,
This secret is hid by Philosophers great and small,
Which blood drawne out of the greene Lyon,
For lack of heate had not perfect digestion.
But this blood called our secreat menstruall,
Wherewith our sperme is nourished temperately,
When it is turned into the feces corporall,
And so become white perfectly and very drye,
Congeald and fixed into his owne bodie,
Then biscoct blood to sight it may well seeme,
Of this worke named the milke white Dyademe.
Vnderstand now that our firie water thus acuate,
Is called our menstruall water, wherein
Our earth is loosed and naturally calcinate,
By Congelation that they may neuer twinne,
But yet to congeale more water thou may not linne:
Into three partes of the acuate water sayd afore,
With the fourth parte of the earth congealed and no more.
Vnto that substance therefore so congelate,
The fourth parte put of water christaline,
And make them then together to be dispousate,
By Congelation into a miner metaline,
Which like a sworde new slipped will shine,
After the blacknes which first will shew,
The fourth parte then giue it of water new.
Imbibitions many it must haue yet,
Giue it the second, and after the third also.
The sayd proportion keeping in thy witt,
Then to another the fourth time looke thou goe,
The fift time and the sixt passe not therefore,
But put two partes at each time of them three,
And at the seuenth time fiue partes must there bee.
When thou hast made seauen times Imbibition,
Againe then must thou turne about thy wheele,
And putrifie all that matter without addition,
First blacknes abiding if thou wilt doe weele,
Then into whitenes congeale it vp each deele,
And after by rednes into the south ascend,
Then hast thou brought thy base vnto an end.
Thus is thy water then diuided into partes two,
With the first parte the bodies be putrificate,
And to thine Imbibitions the second parte must goe,
With which thy matter is afterwarde demigrate,
And soone vpon easie decoction albificate,
Then is it named by Philosophers out starry stone,
Bring that to rednes then is the sixt gate wonne.
The end of the sixt gate.

Of Cibation. The seuenth Gate.

NOw of Cibation I turne my pen to write,
Sith it must here the seuenth place occupie:
But in few words it wilbe expedite,
Take heede therefore, and vnderstand me wittelie;
Cibation is called a feeding of our matter drie,
With milke and meate, which moderately thou doe,
Vntill it be brought the third order vnto.
But giue it neuer so much, that thou it glut;
Beware of dropsey, and also of Noahs flood:
By little and little therefore thou to it put
Of meate and drinke, as seemes to doo it good,
That watry humours not ouergrow the blood,
To drinke therefore let it be measured so,
That kindly appetite thou neuer quench it fro.
For if it drinke too much, then must it haue
A vomit or els it wilbe sick too long,
From the dropsie therefore thy wombe thou saue,
And from the fl [...]x, or els it wilbe wrong,
But rather let it thirst for drinke among,
Than thou shouldst giue it ouermuch at once.
Which must in youth be dieted for the nonce.
And if thou diet it (as nature doth require)
Moderately, till time that it be growen to age,
From colde it keeping, and nourishing with moyst fire,
Then shall it growe, and wexe full of courage,
And doe to thee both pleasure and aduantage:
For he shall make darke bodies whole and bright,
Clensing their leprosies through his might.
Three times must thou turne about thy wheele,
Still keeping the rule of the said Cibation,
And then as soone as it the fire doth feele,
Like waxe it wilbe readie vnto liquation:
This chapter needeth no longer protestation,
For I haue tolde thee the dietorie most conuenient,
After thine Elements be made equipolent.
And also how to whitenes thou shalt bring thy golde,
Most like in figure to leaues of hawthorne tree
Called Magnesia, afore as I haue tolde,
And our white Sulphure without combustibilitie,
Which from the fire away will neuer flie.
And thus the seuenth Gate (as you desired)
In the vprising of the Sunne is conquered.
The end of the seuenth Gate.

Of Sublimation. The eight Gate.

HEre of our Sublimation a word or two
I haue to speake, which the eight Gate is.
Fooles doo sublime, but sublime thou not so,
For we sublime not as they doe ywis:
To sublime truly therefore thou shalt not mis,
If thou canst make thy bodies first spirituall,
And then thy spirits (as I haue taught thee) corporall.
Some doe Mercurie from vitrioll and salt sublime,
And other spirits from scales of yron and steele,
From egg-shels calcined, and from quick lime,
And in their manner yet sublime they right weele:
But such subliming accordeth neuer a deele
To our intents, for we sublime not so,
To true subliming therefore, now will I goe.
In Sublimation first beware of one thing,
That thou sublime to the top of the vessell:
For without violence thou shalt it not downe bring
Againe, but there it will abide and dwell,
So it reioyceth with refrigeration I thee tell,
Keepe it therefore with temperate heate adowne
Full fortie dayes, till it wexe blacke and browne.
For then the soule beginneth to come out
From his owne veynes, for all that subtill is
Will with the spirite ascend withouten doubt,
Beare in thy minde therefore, and thinke on this,
How here eclipsed been thy bodies,
As they doe putrifie subliming more and more
Into water, vntill they be all vp ybore.
And thus their venome when they haue spued out
Into the water then blacke it doth appeare,
Becomming spirituall each deale without doubt,
Subliming easilie in our manner,
Into the water, which doth him beare:
For in the ayre our childe must thus be bore
Of the water againe, as I haue said before.
But when these two by Sublimation continuall
Be laboured so with heate both moyst and temperate,
That all is white and purely made spirituall,
Then heauen vpon earth must be reiterate
Vntill the soule with the bodie be incorporate
That earth become all that before was heauen,
Which wilbe done in Sublimations seauen.
And Sublimations we make for causes three,
The first cause is, to make the bodie spirituall;
The second is, that the spirite may corpora [...]l bee,
And become fixt with it, and consubstantiall;
The third cause is, that from his filthie originall
He may be cleansed, and his saltnes sulphurious
May be minished in him, which is infectious.
Then when they thus together depured be,
They will sublime vp whiter than the snowe▪
That sight will greatly comfort thee:
For then anon perfectly thou shalt knowe
The spirits shall so adowne ythrowe,
That this eight Gate shalbe to thee vnlocked,
Out of the which many be shut and mocked.
The end of the eight Gate.

Of Firmentation. The ninth Gate.

TRue Firmentation few Workers vnderstand,
That secret therefore I will expound to thee,
I trauailed truly through manie a Land,
Ere euer I might finde any that would tell it mee:
Yet as God would, euermore blessed be hee,
At the last I came to the knowledge thereof perfite,
Take heede therefore what I thereof doe write.
Firmentations in diuers manners be doone,
By which our medicine must be perpetuate
Into cleere water: some looseth Sunne and Moone,
And with their medicines make them to be congelate;
Which in the fire when they be examinate
May not abide, nor alter with complement:
For such Firmenting is not to our intent.
But yet more kindly some other men doone,
Fermenting their medicines in this wise,
In Mercurie dissoluing both Sunne and Moone,
Till time with the spirit they will arise,
Subliming them together twice or thrice;
Then Fermentation therewith they make:
That is a way, but yet we it forsake.
Some other there be which haue more hap,
To touch the troth in part of fermenting,
They amalgame their bodies with Mercurie like pap,
Then therevpon their medicines relenting:
These of our secrets haue some henting.
But not the truth with perfect complement,
Because they neither putrifie, nor alter their Ferment.
That poynt therefore I will disclose vnto thee,
Looke how thou didst with thine vnperfect bodie,
Doe so with thy perfect bodies in each degree,
That is to say, first thou them putrifie,
Their former qualities destroying vtterly,
For this is wholly to our intent,
That first thou alter before thou ferment.
To thy compound make firment the fourth part,
Which ferments been only of Sunne and Moone;
If thou therefore be maister of this Arte,
Thy Fermentation let thus be doone,
Fixe water and earth together soone,
And when thy medicine as waxe doth flowe,
Then vpon malgames looke thou it throwe.
And when all that together is mixed,
Aboue the glasse well closed make thy fire,
And so continue it till all be fixed,
And well fermented to thy defire,
Then make Proiection after thy pleasure,
For that is medicine each deale perfite,
Thus must thou ferment both red and white.
For like as flowre of wheate made into paste
Requireth ferment, which leauen we call
Of bread, that it may haue the kindly taste,
And become foode to man and woman cordiall:
Right so thy medicine ferment thou shall,
That it may taste of the Ferment pure,
At all assayes for euer to endure.
And vnderstand that there be Ferments three,
Two be of bodies in nature cleene,
Which must be altred as I haue told thee;
The third most secret of which I meene,
Is the first earth of his water greene:
And therefore when the Lion doth thurst,
Make him to drinke till his belly burst.
Of this a Question if I should mooue,
And aske of workers, what is this thing?
Anon thereby I should them prooue,
If they had knowledge of our fermenting:
For manie a man speaketh with wondring,
Of Robin hood and of his bowe,
Which neuer shot therein I trowe.
For Fermentation true as I thee tell,
Is of the soule with the bodies incorporation,
Restoring to it the kindly smell,
With tast and colour by naturall conspissation,
Of things disseuered, a due reintegration,
Whereby the bodie of the spirit taketh impression,
That either the other may help to haue ingression.
For like as bodies in their compaction corporall,
May not shewe out their qualities effectually,
Vntill the time that they become spirituall,
No more may spirits abide with bodies stedfastly,
Till they with them be confixate proportionally,
For then the bodie teacheth the spirit to suffer fire,
And the spirit the bodie to enter to thy defire.
Therefore thy gold with gold thou must ferment,
With his owne water thy earth cleansed I meene,
Nought else to say but element with element,
The spirit of life onely going betweene,
For like as an adamant as thou hast seene
Draweth yron to him, so doth our earth by kinde,
Drawe downe to him his soule borne vp with winde.
With winde therefore the soule lead out and in,
Mingle gold with gold, that is for to say,
Make Element with Element togetherrin
Till time all fire they suffer may,
For earth is Ferment withouten nay
To water, and water the earth vnto,
Our Fermentatio [...] in this wise must be doe.
Earth is gold, and so is the soule also
Not common, but ours thus Elementate,
And yet thereto the Sunne must goe,
That by our wheele it may be alterate:
For so to ferment it must be preparate,
That it profoundly may ioyned bee,
With other natures as I said to thee.
And whatsoeuer I haue here said of gold,
The same of siluer I will thou vnderstand,
That thou them putrifie and alter (as I haue told)
Ere thou thy medicine to firment take in hand:
Forsooth I could neuer finde him in England
Which in this wise to firment could me teach
Withouten error, by practise or by speach.
Now of this chapter needeth to treate no more,
Sith I intend prolixitie to eschew;
Remember well my words therefore,
Which thou shalt proue by practise trew,
And Sunne and Moone looke thou renew,
That they may hold of the fift nature,
Then shall their tincture euermore endure.
And yet a way there is most excellent,
Belonging vnto another working,
A water we make most redolent,
All bodies to oyle wherewith we bring,
With which our medicine we make flowing,
A quintessence this water we call,
In man which healeth diseases all.
But with thy base, after my doctrine preperate
Which is our calx this must be done,
For when our bodies be so calcinate,
That water will to oyle dissolue them soone,
Make thou therefore oyle both of Sunne and Moone,
Which is ferment most fragrant for to smell.
And so the ninth gate is conquered of this Castell.
The end of the ninth Gate.

Of Exaltation. The tenth Gate.

PRoceede we now to the chapter of Exaltation,
Of which truly thou must haue knowledge pure,
But little it is different from Sublimation,
If thou conceiue it right I you ensure,
Hereto accordeth the holy scripture,
Christ saying thus, if I exalted be,
Then shall I draw all things vnto me.
Our medicine if we exalt right so,
It shalbe thereby nobilitate,
That must be done in manners two,
From time the parties be dispousate,
Which must be crucified and examinate,
And then contumulate both man and wife,
And after reuiued by the spirit of life.
Then vp to heauen they must exalted be,
There to be in bodie and soule glorificate,
For thou must bring them to such subtiltie,
that they ascend together to be intronizate,
In cloudes of clearenes to Angels consociate,
Then shall they draw as thou shalt see,
Al other bodies to their owne dignitee.
If thou therefore the bodies wilt exalt,
First with the spirit of life thou them augment,
till time the earth be well subtilizate,
By naturall rectifying of euery Element,
Them vp exalting into the firmament,
Then much more precious shall they be than gold,
Because of the quintessence which they doe holde.
For when the colde hath ouercome the heate,
Then into water the Ayre shall turned be,
And so two contraries together shall meete,
Till either with orher right well agree,
So into Ayre the water as I tell thee,
When heate of colde hath got domination,
Shall be conuerted by craft of our circulation.
And of the Ayre then fire haue thou shall,
By loosing putrifying and subliming,
And fire thou hast of the earth materiall,
Thine Elements thus by craft disseuering,
Most especially thine earth well calcining,
And when they be each one made pure,
Then doe they holde all of the first nature.
On this wise therefore make them be circulate,
Each into other exalting by and by,
And all in this one glasse surely sigillate,
Not with thine hands, but as I teach thee naturally,
Fire into water then turne first hardly,
For fire is in Ayre, which is in water existent,
And this conuersion accordeth to our intent.
Then furthermore turne on thy wheele,
That into earth the ayre conuerted be,
Which will be done also right well,
For Ayre is in water being in earth trust me,
The water into fire contrarious in her qualitie,
Soone turne thou mayst for water in earth is,
Which is in fire, conuersion true is this.
The wheele is now neere turned about,
Into ayre turne earrh which is the proper nest,
Of other Elements there is no doubt,
For earth in fire is, which in ayre taketh rest,
This circulation beginne thou in the west,
Then into the south, till they exalted bee,
Proceede duely, as in thy figure I haue taught thee.
In which processe clearely thou mayst see,
Frō one extreame how to another thou mayst not go,
But by a meane, since they in qualities contrarious be,
And reason will forsooth that it be so,
As heate into colde, with other contraries [...]o,
Without their meanes as moyst to heate and colde,
Examples sufficient before this I haue tolde.
Thus haue I taught thee how to make
Of all thine Elements a perfect circulation,
And at thy figure example to take,
How thou shalt make this foresaide Exaltation,
And of thy medicine in the Elements true graduation,
Till it be brought to a gueneritie temperate,
And then thou hast conquered the tenth gate.
The end of the tenth Gate.

Of Multiplication. The eleuenth Gate.

MVltiplication now to declare I proceede,
Which is by Philosophers in this wise defined
Augmentation it is of the Elixer indeede,
In goodnes and quantitie both for white and red,
Multiplication is therefore as they doe write,
That thing that doth augmēt medicines in each degree,
In colour, in odour, in vertue and also in quantitee.
And why thou mayst this medicine multiplie,
Infinitely forsooth the cause is this,
For it is fire, which kindled will neuer die,
Dwelling with thee, as fire doth in houses,
Of which one sparke may make more fire ywis,
As muske in pigments and other spices mo,
In vertue multiplied, and our medicine right so.
So he is rich which fire hath lesse or more,
Because he may so hugely it multiply,
And right so rich is he which any parte hath in store,
Of our Elixers which be augmentable infinitely,
One way if thou dissolue our pouders drye,
And make often times of them Congelation,
Thereof in goodnes then makest thou Augmentation.
The second way both in goodnes and quantitie,
It multiplyeth by iterate Fermentation,
As in that chapter I shewed plainely to thee,
By diuers manners of naturall operation,
And also in the chapter of our Cibation,
Where thou mayst know how thou shalt multiplie,
Thy medicine with Mercurie infinitely.
But and thou wilt both loose and eke ferment,
Both more in quantitie and better will it be:
And in such wise thou mayst it soone augment,
That in thy glasse it will growe like a tree,
The tree of Hermes named seemely to see,
Of which one pippin a thousand will multiplie,
If thou canst make thy proiection wittely.
And like as Saffron when it is puluerizate,
By little and little if it with liquor be
Tempred, and then with much more liquor dilate,
Teyneth much more of liquor in quantitie,
Thā being whole in his grosse nature: so shalt thou see,
That our Elixer, the more it is made thinne,
The further in tincture it fastly will rinne.
Keepe in thy fire therefore both euen and morrow,
From house to house that thou neede not to rinne,
Among thy neighbours thy fire to seeke or borrow,
The more thou keepest, the more good shalt thou win
Multiplying it alwaies more & more thy glasse within,
By feeding with Mercurie vnto thy liues end,
So shalt thou haue more than thou needest to spend.
This matter is plaine I will no more
Write thereof, let reason thee guide,
Be neuer the bolder to sinne therefore,
But serue thy God the better in each tide:
And while that thou shalt in this life abide,
Beare this in minde, forget not I thee pray,
As thou shalt appeare before God at domes day.
His owne great giftes therefore and his treasure,
Dispose thou vertuously, helping the poore at neede,
That in this world thou mayst to thee procure,
Mercy and grace with heauenly blisse to meede,
And pray to God deuoutly that he thee leade,
In at the twelfth gate, as he can best,
Soone after then thou shalt end thy conquest.
The end of the eleuenth gate.

Of Proiection. The twelfth Gate.

IN Proiection it shal be proued if our practise be pro­fitable,
Of which it behoueth me the secrets here to moue,
Therefore if thy tincture be sure and not variable,
By a little of thy medicine thus mayst thou proue,
With mettle, or with Mercury as pitch it will cleaue,
And teyne in Proiection all fires to abide,
And soone it will enter and spread him full wide.
But many by ignorance doe marre that they made,
When on mettals vnclensed Proiection they make,
For because of corruption their tinctures must fade,
Which they would not away first from the body take,
Which after Proiection be brittle blew and black,
That thy tincture therefore may euermore last,
First vpon ferment thy medicine see thou cast.
Then brittle as glasse will thy ferment bee,
Vpon bodies clensed and made very pure,
Cast that brittle substance and soone shalt thou see,
That they shall be curiously coloured with tincture,
With all assayes for euer shall endure,
But profitable Proiection perfectly to make,
At the Psalmes of the Psalter example thou take.
On Fundamenta cast first this psalme Nunc di [...]ittis,
Vpon verba mea, then cast Fundamenta beliue,
Then Verba vpon diligam, conceiue me with thy wits.
And diligam vpon attendite, if thou list to thriue,
Thus make thou Proiections, three, foure, or fiue,
Till the tincture of the medicine beginne to decrease,
And then it is time of Proiection to cease.
By this mistie talking I meane nothing else,
But that thou must cast first the lesse on the more,
Encreasing aye the number as wisemen thee tells,
And keepe thou this secreat vnto thy selfe in store,
Be couetous of cunning it is no burden sore,
For he that ioyneth not the Elixer with bodies made cleane,
He wotteth not surely what Proiection doth meane
Ten if thou multiplie first into ten,
One hundreth that number maketh sickerly,
If one hundreth into an hundreth be multiplied, then
Ten thousand is that number if thou count it wittely,
Then into as much more ten thousand to multiplie,
It is a thousand thousand; which multiplied ywis,
Into as much more a hundreth millions is.
That hundreth millions being multiplyed likewise
Into ten thousand millions, as I to thee doe say,
Maketh so great a number I wot not what it is,
Thy number in Proiection thus multiplye alway:
Now childe of thy curtesie for me that thou pray,
Sith I haue tolde thee our secrets all and some,
To the which I beseech GOD by grace thou mayst come.
Now hast thou conquered these gates twelue,
And all the Castle thou holdest at thy will,
Keepe thy secreats in store to thy selfe,
And the commaundements of God looke thou fulfill,
In fire see thou continue thy glasses still,
And multiply thy medicines aye more and more,
For wise men doe say, that store is no sore.
The ende of the twelue Gates, intituled Ripleys Compound of Alchymie.

Recapitulatio totius operis praedicti.

FOr to bring this Treatise to a finall ende,
And briefly here to conclude these secrets all,
Diligently looke thou, and to thy figure attend,
Which doth in it containe these secrets great & small,
And if thou it conceiue, both theoricall and practicall,
By figures and colours, by scripture plaine,
It wittily conceiued, thou mayst not worke in vaine.
Consider first the latitude of this precious Stone,
Beginning in the first side noted in the West,
Where the red man & the white woman be made one,
Spoused with the spirite of life to liue in rest,
Earth and water equally proportionate, that is best,
And one of the earth is good, and of the spirit three,
Which twelue to fowre also of the earth may bee.
Three of the wife, and one of the man thou take,
And the lesse of the spirit in this dispousation,
The rather thy Calcination for certain shalt thou make:
Then forth into the North proceed by obscuration
Of the red man and his white wife, called Eclipsation,
Loosing them and altring them betwixt winter & vere,
Into water turning earth, darke and nothing cleare.
From thence by colours many one into the East ascend,
Then shall the Moone be full appearing by day-light,
Then is she passed purgatorie, and her course at an end,
There is the vprising of the Sunne appearing bright.
There is Summer after Vere, and day after night:
Thē earth & water which wer black, be turned to aire,
And clouds of darknes ouerblown, & all apeareth faire.
And as in the west was the beginning of thy practise.
And the North the perfect meane of profoūd alteratiō:
So in the East after them the beginning of speculatiō is:
But of this course vp in the south the sun maketh cōsū ­matiō.
Ther bin the elements turned into fire by circulatiō:
Then to win to thy desire thou needst not be in doubt,
For the wheele of our philosophie thou hast turned a­bout
But yet about againe two times turne thy wheele,
In which bin cōprehēded all the secrets of our philoso­phy.
In chapiters 12. made plaine to thee, if thou cōceiue thē well,
And all the secrets by & by of our lower Astronomy,
How thou shalt calcine bodies, perfit, dissolue diuide & putrifie,
With perfect knowledge of all the poles which in our heauen beene,
Shining with colours inexplicable, neuer were gayer seene.
And thus our secret conclusion know withouten faile,
Our red man teineth not, nor his wife, til they teined be,
Therefore if thou list thy selfe by this craft to auaile,
The altitude of the bodies hide, & shewe out their pro­funditie,
In euery of thy materials destroying the first qualitie,
And secondary qualities more glorious in them repaire anone,
And in one glasse, and with one rule, foure natures turn to one.
Pale & black with false citrine, imperfect white & red,
The Peacocks feathers in colours gay, the Rainebowe which shall ouergoe,
The spotted pāther, the lyō green, the crowes bil blue as lead,
These shall apeare before thee perfect white, and manie other moe,
And after the perfect white, gray, false citrine also,
And after these, thē shall apeare the body red inuariable,
Then hast thou a medicine of the thirde order of his owne kinde multiplicable.
Thou must diuide thy white Elixer into parts two
Before thou rubifie, & into glasses two let thē be doone.
If thou wilt haue for Sū & moon thy elixer both do so;
And into mercury thē multiply to great quātity soone,
And if thou had not at the beginning to fill a spoone,
Yet maist thou them so multiply both white and red.
That if thou liue a 1000. yeres, they shall stād thee in sted.
Haue thou recourse to thy wheele therefore I counsell thee,
And studie him well to know in each chapter truly,
Meddle with no phantasticall multipliers, but let thē be,
Which will thee flatter feining them cunning in Phi­losophie,
Doe as I bid thee, thē dissolue these foresaid bases wit­tilie,
And turne them into perfect oyles with our true water ardent,
By circulation that must be done according to our in­tent.
These oyles will fixe crude Mercurie and conuert bo­dies all
Into perfect Sunne and Moone, when thou shalt make Proiection;
That oylie substance pure & fixt Raimond Lully did call
His Basiliske, of which he neuer made so plain detectiō:
Pray for me to God, that I may be one of his election,
And that he will for one of his, at doomesday me ken▪
And graunt me his blisse to raigne with him for euer. Amen.
Finis Recapitulationis.

An Admonition, wherein the Author declareth his erronious Experiments.

AFter all this, I will thou vnderstand
For thy sauegard, what I haue doone,
Manie experiments haue I taken in hand
As I found written for Sunne and Moone:
The which I will tell thee, rehearsing soone,
Beginning at the vermilion, which proued nought,
And Mercurie sublimed, which I dearly bought.
I made solutions full manie a one
Of spirits, ferments, salts, yron, and steele,
Weening so to make the Philosophers Stone:
But finally I lost euery deele,
After my bookes yet wrought I weele,
Which euermore vntrue I preeued,
Which made me oft full sore agreeued.
Waters corsiue and waters ardent,
With which I wrought in diuers wise,
Manie one I made, but all were shent,
Egg-shells I calcined twice or thrise,
Oyles from Calxes I made vp to rise,
And euery Element I did from other twin,
But profit found I none therein.
Also I wrought in sulphure and vitriall,
Which fooles doe call the greene Lyon,
In Arsinike, in orpiment, foule them befall,
In debili principio was my inception,
Therefore in fine, was fraude my conclusion:
And thus I blew my thrift at the cole,
My cloathes were bawdie, my stomacke neuer whole.
Sal Armoniacke, and Sandiuere,
Sal Alcalie, Sal allembroke, and Sal attinckarre,
Sal tartar, salt common, Sal gem most cleare,
Salt Peter, salt sod, of these beware,
And from the odour of quicksiluer keepe thee farre,
Meddle not with Mercurie precipitate,
Neither with imperfect bodies rubificate.
I prooued vrine, eggs, haire and blood,
The soule of Saturne, and also of markazite,
Aes vst, and Crokefeere, which did me neuer good,
And the scales of yron which Smithes of smite,
Litarge and Antimonie, not worth a mite;
Of the which gay tinctures did I shew,
Both red and white, which were vntrew.
Oyle of lyme, and water with labour great
I made, calcining it with salt preperate,
And by it selfe with violent heate,
Grinding with vineger till I was fatigate,
And also with aqua vitae, with spices acuate
Vpon a marble Stone, which stood me in cost,
And oyles with corosiues I made; but all was lost.
Manie a Malgame did I make,
Weening to fixe them to great auaile,
And thereto Sulphure did I take,
Tartar, egges, whites, and oyle of the snayle,
But euer of my purpose did I faile,
For what for the more, and what for the las,
Euermore something wanting there was.
Wine and milke, oyles and rennyt,
The slyme of starres that fall on ground,
Celedonie with Secundines and many mo yet;
In these I practised as I in bookes found,
I wan right nought, but lost many a pound,
Of Mercurie and mettalls I made christall stones,
Weening it had been a worke for the nones.
Thus I rosted and broyled, as one of Gebers cookes,
Oft times in the asshes my winning I sought,
For I was deceiued by manie false bookes,
Whereby vntruth truly I wrought,
But all such experiments auailed me right nought,
But brought me in danger and encumbrance,
By losse of my goods and other greeuance.
For the loue of our Ladie such lewdnes eschew,
And medle with no falshood, that neuer proued weele,
Assay when thee liketh, and thou shalt finde it trew,
Winne shalt thou right nought, but lose euerie deele,
Pence in thy purse pawtner few shalt thou feele,
In smokes and in smels thou shalt haue much woe,
That vnneth for sicknes on earth thou shalt goe.
I sawe neuer true worke truly but one,
Of which in this Treatise the truth I haue told:
Studie only therefore how to make our Stone,
For thereby maist thou winne both siluer and gold,
Vpon my writing therefore, to ground thee be bold:
So shalt thou loose nought if God be thy guide,
Trust to my doctrine, and thereby abide.
Remember that Man is most noble creature
Of earthly composition, that euer God wrought,
In whō is the foure Elements, proportioned by nature,
A naturall Mercurialitie, which costeth right nought,
One of his myner by arte it is brought;
For our mettalls be nought els but our myners two,
Of Sunne and Moone, wise Raymond said so.
The clearnes of the Moone, and of the Sunne so bright,
Into these two myners descendeth secretly,
Howbeit the clearnes is hid from thy sight,
Which by craft thou shalt make it to appeare openly:
This hid Stone, this one thing therefore putrifie,
And wash him in his owne broth till white he become;
Then ferment him wittily; loe here is all and some.
Now to God Almightie I thee commend,
Who graunt thee grace to knowe this one thing;
For now is this Treatise brought to an end:
And God for his mercie to his blisse vs bring,
Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus where the Angells doe sing,
Praising without ceasing his glorious Maiestie,
Which he in his Kingdome graunt vs for to see.
Amen quod George Ripley.

The Epistle by the same Author written to King Edward the 4.

O Honorable Lord, and most victorious Knight,
With grace and vertue abundantly endewed,
The safegard of England, and maintainer of right;
That God you loueth, indeed he hath well shewed:
Wherefore I trust this land shalbe renewed
With ioy and riches, with charitie and peace,
So that olde ranckors new vnderstrewed,
Tempestuous troubles, and wretchednes shall cease.
And therefore sith I see by tokens right euident,
That God you guideth, and how that you be vertuous,
Hating sinne, and all such as be insolent,
How that also manslaughter to you is odious,
Vpon the iudgement also that you be piteous:
Me seemeth ruthe it were but that you should liue long;
For of your great fortune you are not presumptuous,
Nor vengeable of spirit to reuenge you of each wrong.
These considered with others in your most noble State,
Like as God knoweth, and people doe witnes beare,
So entirely me m [...]oueth, that I must algate
Record the same, and therein be no flatterer:
And not that only, but also to write here
Vnto your Highnes, humbly to present
Great secrets, which infarre countries I did learne,
And which by grace to me most vnworthie are lent.
Once to your Lordship such things I did promise,
What time you did commaund to send vnto me,
And sith that I wrote it in secret wise,
Vnto your grace from the Vniuersitie
Of Louaine, when God fortuned me by grace to see
Greater secrets and much more perfite,
Which onely to you I will disclosed to be,
That is the great Elixer both red and white.
For like it you to trust that truly I haue found,
The perfect way of most secret Alchymie,
Which I will neuer truly for marke nor for pound
Make common but to you, and that conditionally,
That to youre selfe you shall keepe it full secretly,
And only to vse it as may be to Gods pleasure,
Else in time comming to God I should abye,
For my discouering of his secret treasure.
Therefore be you well aduised and with good deliberation,
For of this secret shall know no other creature,
But onely you as J make faithfull protestation,
For all the time that herein life J shall endure,
Whereto J will your Lordship me ensure,
To my desire in this my oath for to agree,
Least I to me the wrath of God procure,
For such reuealing of his great gift and priuitie.
If God fortune you by me to win this treasure,
Serue him deuowtly with more lawde and thanking,
Praying his Godhead in life that you may so endure,
His gifts of grace, and fortune to vse to his pleasing,
Most especially intending ouer all thing,
To your power and cunning his precepts ten
So to obserue, that into no danger your selfe you bring,
But that you in glory may see him hereafter, Amen.
And yet moreouer I will your Lordship to pardon me,
For openly with pen I will it neuer it write,
But whensoeuer you list by practise you shall see,
By mouth also this precious secret, most of delight,
How may be made perfect Elixers both red and white,
Plaine vnto your Lordship it shall declared be,
And if it please you, with easie expences and respite,
I will them worke by grace of the Trinitie.
But notwithstanding for perill that may befall,
If I dare not here plainely the knotte vnbinde,
Yet in my writing I will not be so misticall,
But that by studie the true knowledge you may finde,
How that each thing is multiplied in his kinde,
And how the likenes of bodies metaline be transmutable
I will declare, that if you feele me in your minde,
My writing you shall finde true and no fained fable.
As Philosophers in the m [...]the [...]rs doe write,
The likenes of bodies mataline be not transmutable,
But after he added these wordes of more delight,
Without they be reduced to their beginning materiable,
Wherefore such bodies within nature be liquiable,
Minerall and metaline may be mercurizate,
Conceiue you may this science is not opinionable,
But very true, by Raymond and others determinate,
In the saide booke the Philosophers speake also,
Therein if it please your Highnes for to reade,
Of diuers sulphures, and especially of two,
And of two mercuries ioyned to them indeed,
Whereby he doth true vnderstanders leade,
To the knowledge of the principle which is onely trew,
Both red, moist, pure, and white, as I haue espied,
Which be neuerthelesse found but of verie few.
And these two things be best, he addeth anone
For him that worketh the Alchymie to take:
Our golde and our siluer therewith to make all one,
Wherefore I say who will our pearle and Ruby make,
The said principles looke he not forsake:
For at the beginning, if his principles be true,
And if so be by craft he can them also bake,
In th'end truly his worke he shall not rue.
But one great secret right needfull to be knowne,
That though the Philosophers speake plurally,
All is but one thing you may me well trowe,
In kinde which is our base principally,
Whereof doth spring both white and red naturally,
And yet the white must come first out of the red,
Which thing is not wrought manually,
But naturally, craft helping out of our lead.
For all the partes of our most precious stone,
As I can proue, be coessentiall and concrete,
Moreouer there is no true principle but one,
Full long it was ere I therewith could meete,
Who can reduce him and knoweth his heate,
And onely kinde with kinde can well redresse,
Till filthie originall be clensed from his seate,
He likely is to finde our secrets more and lesse.
Therefore worke kinde onely with his owne kinde,
And so your Elements ioyne that they not striue▪
This poynt also for any beare in minde,
That passiue natures you turne into actiue,
Of water, fire, and winde of earth make bliue,
And of the quadrangle make a figure round,
Then haue thou the honie of our bee-hiue,
One ounce well worth one thousand pound.
The principall secret of secrets all,
Is true proportion which may not be behinde,
Wherein I counsell thee be not superficiall,
The true conclusion if you thinke to finde,
Turne earth into water and water into winde,
Therefore make fire and beware of the flood
Of Noah, wherein many men are so blinde,
That by this science they get little good.
I counsell you eate and drink temperately,
And beware well that Iposarcha come not in place,
Neshe not your wombe by drinking immoderately,
Least you quench naturall heate in little space,
The colour will tell appearing in your face,
Drinke no more therefore than you may eate,
Walke vp and downe after an easie pace,
Chafe not your bodie too sore to sweate.
With easie fire after mouing when you sweate,
Warme your bodie and make it drie againe,
By riuers and fountaines walke after meate,
At morning time visit the high mountaine,
That Phisick so biddeth I read certaine,
So high the mountaines yet doe you not ascend,
But that you may downwardes your way haue plaine,
And with your mantle from colde ye you defend.
Such labour is wholesome your sweat for to drie
With napkin, and after it see you take no colde,
For grosse humors be purged by sweate kindely,
Vse Diacameron then confect with perfect golde,
Hermidocles for watry humors good I holde,
Vse Jpericon perforat with milke of tincturiall,
And sperma Caeti with red wine, and when you wax olde,
And Goats milke sod with wine nourisheth moysture radicall.
But a good Phisition who so intendeth to be,
Our lower Astronomie needeth well to know,
And after that to learne well vrine in a glasse to see,
And if it neede to be chafed the fire for to blow,
Then wittily it by diuers wayes for to throw
After the cause to make a medicine bliue,
Truly telling the infirmities all on a row,
Who this can doe by his Phisick is like to thriue.
VVe haue our heauen incorruptible of the quintessence,
Ornate with signes, Elements, and starres bright,
VVhich moysteth our earth by subtill influence,
And of it a secret sulphure hid from sight,
It fetcheth by vertue of his actiue might,
Like as the Bee fetcheth honey out of the flower,
VVhich thing could doe no other worldly wight.
Therefore to God be all glory and honour.
And like as yee to water doth relent,
VVhere it was congealed by violence of colde,
VVhen Phoebus it shineth with his heate influent,
Euen so to water minerall reduced is our golde,
As witnesseth plainely, Albert, Raymond, and Arnold,
By heate and moysture and by craft occasionate,
VVhich congelation of the spirits, loe now J haue tolde,
How our materialls together must be proportionate.
At the dyers craft you may learne this science,
Beholding with water how decoction they make
Vpon the wad or madder easily and with patience,
Till tinctures doe appeare which then the cloth doth take,
Therein so fixed that they will neuer forsake
The cloth, for washing after they ioyned be,
Euen so our tinctures with the water of our lake,
VVe draw by boyling vvith the ashes of Hermes tree.
Which tinctures when they by craft are made perfite,
So dyeth mettles with colours aye permanent,
After the qualitie of the medicine, red or white,
That neuer away with anie fire wilbe brent:
To this example if you take good tent,
Vnto your purpose the rather you shall winne.
And let your fire be easie, and not too feruent,
Where nature did leaue what time you did beginne.
First calcine, and after that putrifie,
Dissolue, distill, sublime, discend and fixe,
With Aqua vitae oft times both wash and drie,
And make a marriage the bodie and spirite betwixt,
Which thus together naturallie if you can mixe,
In loosing of the bodie the water congeald shalbe,
Then shall the bodie die vtterlie of the flixe,
Bleeding and changing his colours, as you shall see.
The third day againe to life he shall arise,
And deuoure birds, and beasts of the wildernesse,
Crowes, popingaies, pies, peacocks, and mauois,
The Phoenix, with the Eagle, and the Griffin of fearfulnesse,
The greene Lion, with the red Dragon he shall distresse,
With the white Dragon, and the Antelop, Vnicorne & Panther,
With other beasts and birds both more and lesse,
The Basiliske also, which almost each one doth feare.
Jn bus and nibus he shall arise and descend,
Vp to the Moone, and sith vp to the Sunne,
Through the Ocean sea, which round is withouten end,
Onely shippen within a little glassen tunne;
When he is there come, then is the mastrie wonne:
About which iourney, great goods you shall not spend,
And yet you shall be glad that euer it was begunne,
Patiently if you list to your worke attend.
For then both bodie and spirite with oyle and water,
Soule, and tincture, one thing both white and red,
After colours variable it containeth, whatsouer men clatter;
Which also is called after he hath once been dead
And is reuiued, our Markaside, our Magnet, and our lead,
Our Sulphur, our Arsinike, and our true Calx viue,
Our Sunne, our Moone, our ferment and our bread,
Our toad, our Basiliske▪ our vnknowen bodie, our man, our wife.
Our bodie thus naturally by craft when he is renouate
Of the first order, is medicine called in our Philosophie;
Which oftentimes againe must be propertualicate,
The round wheele turning of our Astronomie,
And so to the Elixer of spirits you must come: for why
Till the sonne of the fixed by the sonne of the fixer be ouergone,
Elixer of bodies, named it is onely,
And this found secret poynt, deceaueth manie one.
This naturall proces by helpe of craft thus consummate,
Dissolueth Elixer spirituall in our vnctuous humiditie,
Then in Balneo Mare together let them be circulate,
Like new honie or oyle, till perfectly they be thickned.
Then will that medicine heale all infirmitie,
And turne all mettals to Sunne and Moone perfectly,
Thus you shall make the great Elixer, and Aurum potabile,
By the grace and will of God, to whom be all honour and glorie.
Amen. quod George Ripley.

George Ripleys Wheele mentioned in his Worke.

In the Sunne he puts his tabernacle,

Sunne and moone blessed be ye.

The flouds vvent avvaie in the drith. Coelum.

Sol conuerted into darknes, and Lvna into blood. [...]horm.

♉ ♍ ♑ Occidentalis, Atte [...]tiue, Autumne VVest. 🜃

♋ ♏ ♓ Aquea, flegma­tica, Australia, Expulsiue, VVinter, North. 🜄

♊ ♒ ♎ Sanguinea, ve­ria, Masculina &c. Oriēntalis digestiue. East. 🜁

♈ ♌ ♐ Ignea, Choleria Meridionalis, Attractiue, Sū ­mer. South. 🜂

The alti­tude of the stone, fie­rie in qualitie, shining more than perfect quintes­sence, and end of the prac­tise, speculatiue. Sol te­net ignem. South.

As Christ the Scripture making mentiō,
In the holy wombe descended of Marie:
Frō his high throne for our redemption,
Working the holy Ghost to be incarnate,
So here our Stone descends frō his estate,
Into the womb of our Virgin Mercuriall,
To helpe his brethren from filth originall.

The f [...]rst or West lati­tude of the Stone, and en­ [...]ring into the practiue pole and earthly in qualitie. occasionate. Saturne holdeth the earth. West.

As Christ his godhead hid frō our sight,
When he our kinde to him did take,
Euen so our Sun his beames of light
As for a time hath him forsake,
For vnder the wings of his make
The Moone, he hideth in his glory,
And dieth in kind that he may multiply.

The darke profunditie of the Stone in the North, Pur­gatorie all imperfect, wa­ [...]rie in qualitie, variable in colour, the eclipse of the Sunne. Mercurius te­net aquam. North.

As Christ our Sauiour was tumulate,
After his passion and death on tree,
And after his bodie was glorificate.
Vprose indued with immortalitie▪
[...]o here our Stone buried after penaltie,
Vpriseth from darknes & colors variable
Appearing in the East with clearenes incomperable.

The East latitude of the Stone and entring into the speculatiue aier of the full Moone. Iupiter holdeth the aier. East.

As Christ frō earth to heauen did ascend,
In cloudes of clearnes vp to his throne,
And raigneth there shining without end,
Right so our Sunne, now made our Stone,
Vnto his glory againe is gone,
His fire possessing here in the South,
With power to heale leapers and renewe youth
From paradise they goe to heauen to woon,
shinining brighter than doth the Sun.

Here the red man and his white wi [...]
Be spoused with the spirite of life.
Into Paradice here we goe▪
There to be purged of paine and woe
Here be they passed their paines all,
Exceeding in brightnes the christall

♄ ☉☉

♃ ☽ ☽

♂ ☿☿

He brought vvater out of the stone, & oyle out of the most hard rock.

The Sunne is in the eclipse, and the Moone shall not shine by night.

Our heauen this figure called is,
our table also of the lower astronomy,
Which vnderstood thou canst not mis,
to make our medicine perfectly,
on it therefore set thou thy studie,
And vnto God both night & day,
For grace, and for the Author pray.

To the indifferent Reader.

FOrasmuch, (Gentle reader) as nothing can be performed, with what singulari­ty of iudgement, exquisite foresight, great care and diligence soeuer, in any action of importance, but that some fault or error must of necessitie be cō ­mitted, it being an vnseperable pro­pertie of nature accident vnto men to erre; for that it is impossible for the most curious, quickest, and piercing eye to see all things: I hope therefore thou wilt not finde it strange, if any thing haue bin mistaken by me in deciphering of this worke, by conference of many olde rude and ill written Copies, out of which the same with great trauel and industry hath been gathered, as the Rose from among the Briers and Thornes, or the sweete Violet out of the Nettles: for that euery man carried with a seuerall opinion and sense, thinketh best of his iudgement, Copie and correction: whereupon it was not possible for me to ground a­ny certaintie, if I had not happened on a most auncient recorde thereof, and vsed the assistance of a most notable and experien­ced decipherer of olde and vnperfect writing, and after confer­red with many skilfull persons in this high Arte: praying thee if in reading hereof thou shalt note any fault in matter or forme▪ that thou wilt curteously note the same and send it vnto me, or the house of Peter Bales in the Olde Bayly, to bee cor­rected vppn the next generall impression, there being but a small number of these Bookes imprinted, remayning at this time in his handes to be priuately deliuered to the learned & desirous thereof. Vale.

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