5286Re: [DrJohnDee] Portrait of Kelley
- Aug 29, 2013While I await more information on Saul's possible claim to have been trained in Leiden I thought this may interest as in my view the labs were being used by Kelly at least with a medical product in mind. The equivalent to the philosopher's stone but a mysterious substance which could heal plague and assorted ills" In the 17th century, many apothecaries not only sold pharmaceutical remedies made on the basis of medicinal plants but also alchemically produced medicines: the so-called iatrochemical remedies. In the Dutch Republic, buyers interested in these latter medicines were guided to apothecary shops selling them by means of a sign showing a salamander in a fire basket. Iatrochemical medicines were manufactured through distillation, and fire was an essential element in the process. In Antiquity it was assumed that the salamander was able to survive even in the flames; the reptile therefore symbolized the element of fire for alchemists. In Amsterdam several alchemists were active in laboratories preparing medicines in the Golden Age, amongst whom Johann Rudolph Glauber from Germany. His house on Looiersgracht contained a laboratory that was renowned throughout Europe. Mostly thanks to the efforts of the Leiden medical professor Franciscus de le Boë Sylvius, Leiden University established a laboratorium chimicum in the late 1660s. This laboratory was added to Leiden’s hortus botanicus and theatrum anatomicum, which had also been set up earlier to serve medical science.
Galen versus Paracelsus
Classical medicine as represented by the Graeco-Roman physician Claudius Galenus (2nd century CE) was challenged in the sixteenth century by the Swiss physician and alchemist Paracelsus, a great advocate of observation and experiment. He did not accept the authority of the classics per se and launched a revolution in medicine by applying the art of alchemy to the art of healing. Amongst his followers were the authors of the Rosicrucian Manifestoes Fama fraternitatis and Confessio fraternitatis in Germany and the physician Theodor Kerckring in the Dutch Republic. Today the latter is best known as an anatomist and also as a fellow pupil of Benedictus de Spinoza at the Latin school of Franciscus van den Enden, who was later to become Kerckring’s father-in-law. As a chemical physician Kerckring, like Paracelsus, apparently adhered to the Hermetic world view. Alchemy on the Amstel opens with a brief exploration of traditional Galenic medicine as it was still practised in the Dutch Republic in the Golden Age, to meander via the rise of Paracelsian iatrochemistry and one of the most evocative – and controversial – iatrochemical medicines, antimony, to the medical biography of Theodor Kerckring, physician and alchemist and a follower not only of Paracelsus but also Hermes Trismegistus, whom he extolled as the pater omnium chymicorum, the father of all alchemists'
johnOn 29 August 2013 11:24, <tmor123@...> wrote:
First thoughts were the identification was highly dubious but looking through my files I found a portrait by a Czech artist (I think) which is very similar. I have uploaded this to the photos folder with portraits of Dee and Laski by the same artist. I'm not at home at this week but when I get back I'll try to give the source reference.
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