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Bard Judith
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« on: 24 June 2005, 21:23:00 »

I saved it on my Mom's computer!  I KNEW I wouldn't have done all that work without saving....

 :D  :cool:  :azn:  ;)  :D
 

Of course, she lives three hours away, so I couldn't check before now....  Anyhow, here's what I had, and I think it's about as up-to-date a compilation as we've got!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Santharian Alchemy – the Collation 

(Contributors: Artimidor Federkiel, Bard Judith, Baron Lkuth, Garganellus, Isilhir, Rayne Avalotus, Talia Sturmwind)


Overview:

Alchemy is the term used to describe the ancient art of ‘manipulating the composition, structure, properties, and reactions of matter’, which was to become a dark and complex blend of philosophy, scientific experimentation, worldview, and faith.  The very word ‘alchemy’ comes from the collation, appropriately, of two ancient Gnomish words:  ‘ Alim ‘ ( = to mesh) and ‘ Chemistu ‘ ( = material ).  Alchemy’s main focus arises from the belief that living creatures (part of the gods’ creation) can assist the gods in the ongoing process of creating new material.

Definition of Alchemy:

One of the driving influences of alchemical research was the Gnomish concept of Purification; the idea that at the beginning of creation only completely pure substances formed the entire cosmological realm . Affected by various negative influences such as Coór the Dark God, and the passions and jealousies that arose among the Twelve, the pure creation became infected or tainted with various admixtures of substances.   In Gnomish culture it is held that Alchemy’s end goal is to purify all infected substances, in order to restore the world to its original perfection.  This natural state may be achieved through performing countless Euxperi (tests) and following Phormai (receipts, formulae)

Gnomish legends and symbols of Alchemy have always concerned themselves with the purification of metals following the method of ‘ Sulvet’ (melt)  and ‘Koajulet’ (make solid.  These methods are used also for the production of medical powders and peculiar essences.) Alchemy is thus a means of attempting to connect metals to the cosmological universe and the divine pantheon, so that each transformation is not chaotic and random, but rather organized by the influences of the constellations and the benevolence of the gods. Although Alchemy is not magic, some of its results seem almost magical, as it affects and alters the physical forms that comprise the world of Caelereth.

 The concept of Alchemy developed slowly and mainly on a philosophical basis,  gnomes and elves being the principal two races interested in this ‘search for perfection’.  In time, Alchemy spread out among the other races of Sarvonia, each race attempting to apply its concepts to its own culture and beliefs.  Alchemy became a widespread art, seeking to destroy/change the properties of/refine imperfect substances in order to please the gods, benefit sentientkind, and change the world.  All sorts of applications and connections were sought in relation to medicine, religion, cosmology, writing, philosophy, magic and social aspects.   And of course, various themes and branches of the art developed (see below), each with a slightly different focus and technique, but all moving towards the same goals.  Many errors and quite a bit of superstitious meandering (‘irrelevant gibberish!’ states one vexed scholar)  sprang up in the unwieldy field of alchemical research and writing, but slowly more credence was given to the work of one particular gnome author, Erme-Tu Megistus.  His collected writings became known as the “Alchemical Tome”, and are considered almost as authoritative as a divinely-inspired scripture among the gnomes. 

To this day, however, Alchemy’s most interesting and productive results are still achieved by the Gnomish race from whence it sprang;  our Gnome alchemists and researchers are constantly considering realistic applications and practical possibilities of this art in daily life.  The Gnome culture improved the techniques of Distillation - trying to extract the ‘ spirit ‘ or essence from the substance -  with the goal to produce elixirs able to cure infections and other illnesses. These studies increased the knowledge about acids, salts and healing liquids in order to improve the quality of living.  And we still give great alchemists the title of ‘Magistus’ or ‘Magis’ in honour of Erme-Tu!

Some Basic Concepts in Alchemy:


The ‘Trej Clak’ ( = three elements ):

Bassha = Water

Giagula = Air

Behta = Earth

These elements are by concept the basis of all corporal substance, and all matter is formed by some combination of the three in varying proportions.  Alchemy attempts to categorize and define everything by these three elements.   Note that our fourth Santharian element, Fire (or Gnuuth in Gnomish), is seen only as an igniter or catalyst; it is not considered an original element, but as a transient state between air and earth.   This rather noticeable difference in philosophic thought has created a good many discussions, expositions, and rationalizations as the various alchemists try to justify their categorizations!


Elemene Tabulata (“The Table of Elements)

Gnomes in their researches developed a type of ever-changing compendium or codex,  which is intended to contain the main Alchemy concepts and their applications. This codex covers the associations of things, symbols, concepts and abstracts with the known natural (pure) elements. The Elemene Tabulata also attempts to describe various substances, compounds, and alchemical processes, as well as the archetypes and symbols associated with them.  Part of an alchemist’s duty is to constantly be sorting objects and concepts around him or her, and adding to the Elemene Tabulata - which should be seen as a living organism, vital and growing, rather than a static list – as well as cross-checking all additions with other alchemists.  It is a work always in progress, every gnomish alchemist alive constantly struggling to find new connections and definitions to add to the codex – some working together, some jealously hoarding their secrets – but all in the hopes that when the great Elemene Tabulata is finally complete, a new age of beauty and power will transform the universe.

Human alchemists have struggled with this concept:  “Does this book exist or not? Or is it rather the ultimate book of wisdom all gnomes strive to create? Maybe this book is constantly re-written, bearing always the same title, but from different gnomes, stressing different aspects? The book where all explanations are contained…. Ah, a tempting dream for a scholar…”

The Cylgromin Rock (“The Life-within Rock”)

It is said to be the key to the perfect transformation of all materials . It is a strong gnomish belief that the Cylgromin Rock is the basis of life.  Cylgromin is unable to produce anything, but it is believed to be able to transform the substances that form a particular object in a more perfect way, perhaps also giving it magical ethereal powers, thanks to its new form and structure.
It is said to be a chimera object in human cultures; the Cylgromin Rock may be no more than a legend or a philosophical image, though some alchemists strive to create it in actual fact.   Many of the elements we know that do exist in Caelereth share a universal pattern, so perhaps many more exist that we don't know about, capable of causing transformations and reactions of which even the Gnomes have not yet dreamed…

“The Cylgromin would be the "ideal" rock, the completely pure rock, the rock archetype….[it]  represents the idea of rock, of matter itself.  It is the ‘mirror of the Gods’ which is the true representation of divine perfection, and thus godly…”  Sage Artimidor Federkiel, on Alchemy

The Allith

This is primarily an elven concept, and is not well-comprehended by other races.  However, as far as we have been able to determine, elvish alchemists are not only striving to make sense of their physical world by combining things from different elemental groups but also working for the ultimate goal of creating a miniature replica of an ideal world – ‘a crystalized bubble of Avanean thought’, as one elven philosopher put it.  We may theorize that this is the elven equivalent of the Cylgromin Rock, or perhaps a powerful sphere of mystic energy like the “Tear of Ava”?  Or perhaps it is a thought-construct which in its complexity is not understandable by shorter-lived minds…
 
Domatium

A highly bondable non-metallic element discovered by the Gnomes in the year XXXX b.S. by the Arch-Alchemist. It is Domatium that impedes the process of “explosions” but creates some of the chemical effects highly unique to Caelereth, effects of Alchemical Transmutation that can easily be confused with magic by the uninformed "locals."




The Historical Development of Alchemy:

It is impossible to supply a date for the birth of Alchemy,  because it was studied and developed in different times and races from various points of view. However, there are a few significant ‘signposts’ along the way which our Compendium historiographers have been able to identify for you!

Human Alchemy

The first studies on Alchemy among the men races started firstly among the Sophronians and then it spread to the other human races. The Sophronians had noticed that the earth kept its fertility thanks also to the ‘ humus’ , residual substances from leaves and dead animals. This aspect of the death returning to the earth seemed to them like a sort of life closing circle.
So, in order to stop this circling life and to keep inalterated the dead bodies of their men, they developed Alchemy to mummify the dead corpses. In such a way they hoped to open a sort of gate toward the immortality.
In this way the Sophronians, studying the mummification process and applying it , discovered that certain substances used to mummify, were also able to cure certain illnesses of the natural creatures. Nevertheless they never succeeded in the goal to develop such benefits .
Only many years later, when the gnome culture spread among men, a real curative Alchemy was developed and increased thanks to the gnomes who pushed on the argument to a more applicative field : the healing powders.

Elven Alchemy

“Elven alchemy seeks to understand the relationship of the physical universe to the spiritual/philosophical one, ultimately to recreate the perfection of the original Dream of Ava in a crystallized miniature ‘thought-bubble’, which they refer to as ‘The Avalith’…”

Nearly some years before, also the elven society developed their form of Alchemy, but starting from a different approach. The elvish tribe of the Astyrhim had been interested to see every aspect of Life as a interaction between the Ugly and the Beauty, like a sort of opposition between the Gods Ava and Coor. From this contrast arose the religious aspect of Alchemy.
In this matter , elves were the first to develop the idea of Purification in Alchemy, trying to reach the Perfection studying the balance of good and evil in all aspects of their life. Nevertheless they only kept this concept at the religious and cosmological level.
They tried to check how Winds and Gods acted on their life, hoping to reach a better and higher level of coscience, perhaps re-balancing the good and evil of each creature essence.
Nevertheless also they kept their studies on a religious level only and once again it was the Gnome society who developed a concrete way to apply their knowledge to the religious part of Alchemy : Runes and Symbols.


Gnomish Alchemy
Also the gnomes had their approach toward Alchemy and with time it demonstrated to be the more effective and productive. In particular it was the Daran culture to act first of all , supporting the concept of Purification, but mainly on the substance of the universe. They pushed on the idea that Purification ( and so Perfection ) can be reached through a process of manipulation of substances, making so Alchemy an art. They first applied the art of ‘ melt and make solid ‘ to the metals. In such a way they were the first race to get some concrete results , producing new metals increasing their characteristics.
Then, while they were pushing on their studies in the Distillation field of elixirs, the gnome race started to meet and study the knowledge of elves and men in the Alchemy field. Immediately gnomes found a multitude of applications for those concepts developed by the other races. In particular Gnomes discovered the possibility to form new mixtures thanks to the healing powders used by men in their mummification processes and moreover extended their alchemical knowledge to the cosmological and religious aspects , increasing the use of runes and symbols , in their creative applications, thanks to the elven races.

After many years of checks and trials , making a fusion of all these knowledge, Gnomes reached an excellent mastership in the Alchemy, so that the civilized world recognized them as the best alchemists in such art.   

Inks, paints, pigments, dyes, mordants, candles, oils, soaps, tinctures, adhesives, cleansers, varnishes, resins,  fertilizers, pest-banes and weed-blights are only the most common articles which the Gnomes provide for Santharia.

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Alchemical Disciplines and Practices:

As Alchemy developed, certain similarities in practices and beliefs began to coalesce; currently it is considered that five main ‘streams’ or styles of alchemical study exist, each with their own unique focus. A distinction between 'pure alchemy' and 'applied alchemy' became clear, particularly as the gnomes sought to apply what they had learned to make life better, and as the assorted races of Caelereth began to learn and practice alchemy in their own ways. 

There are of course any number of 'schools of thought' in the philosophy of alchemy, each with their own concentration; however, the 'Trigustemes', the 'Cylgromists', the 'Xeuan Monks', the 'Larcadians', and the 'Amithrites' are the most well-known. (Please note: only the common Tharian names are given here for each school)

TRIGUSTEMES:  The Trigustemes believe in applied alchemy. They concentrate on distilling, reducing, diluting, concentrating, or in other ways transmuting the elements around them to create 'pure' or 'new' forms. They claim to be the only branch of alchemy which benefits humanity (or other sentient beings) immediately, and have somewhat of an attitude of amused disdain for the more theoretical strains. One is more likely to encounter a Trigusteme in a public setting, across a shop counter or vending his wares as a travelling peddlar, so they are the most widely recognized representatives of alchemy to the non-academic.  The Gnorian alchemists, for example are almost all Trigustemes, dealing in salt, glass, dye, calx (cement) and other such practical products, as are a majority of the Golgnomes.   The practical hobbits and even more earthy-minded Thergerim, if they choose alchemy as a profession at all, invariably work within this school.

CYLGROMISTS: The alchemic branch of the Cylgromists arose directly from the Trigusteme philosophies, but chose to focus its attention on creating one single completely purified item - the Cylgromin Rock. It is not completely clear to non-alchemists what the end goal of this might be, but it has been theorized that this 'perfect stone' might be utilized as a template to create other 'perfect' substances, and possibly even to assist in purifying the substance of mankind...  Cylgromists get their hands equally as dirty as Trigustemes, but with less apparent result.  However, they are the writers and recounters, by and large, who are responsible for recording the various Phormai (receipts or formulae) which they have found to have a consistent, reproducible effect.  A great deal of knowledge has been preserved for other Euxperfi (testers, alchemists) in this way.

XEUANS:  Xeuan Monks - a spiritual, arrational movement in alchemy, which is constantly seeking to achieve the concept of oneness with the universe, a state of mind achieved by focusing on the interconnectedness of all things and the Xeua between them. When that state of mind, known as 'Xeuan', is finally reached, the corporal body dissipates into the whole. The Xeuan philosophy is characterized by almost austere simplicity of lifestyle, a desire to avoid possessions, decoration, or emotions, and a disregard for personal comfort. Supposedly this allows the spirit freedom to lift its focus free from the corporeal shell.  Elves in particular are drawn towards this alchemical school, though some humans, gnomes, and Brownies also have been found in the seclusion of the Malise Islands monastery (off the western coast of Manthria, across from the Tolonian Waist of Sarvonia)

LARCADIANS:  Larcadians lean towards a less arcane type of theoreticizing, which they believe will bring a new utopian Caelereth to life - if only they could convince everyone to visualize it along with them, Arethia Larcadia (a communal society without greed, anger, or other hurtful passions) could be achieved! They are also attempting to ratify a set of writings - rules for living - which they call the Cadian Codex, also a work in progress.  Many Daran Gnomes are such optimistic Larcadians and often ‘proselytize’ hopefully to the humans among whom they live.  At the very least this school of alchemy has achieved great cross-cultural/cross-racial harmony and promoted a positive mindset in their various communities!

ALMITHRITES:  Finally, of course, there are the Almithrites, whom as everyone knows are the experimental dreamers who are trying to recreate mithril, or transform other metals into it.  Their particular branch of alchemy gained many adherents when mithrilan was ‘rediscovered’ by a talented Varcopasian swordsmith (see the Mithrilan entry), but the new metallic additive, though marvelously improving the qualities of many other materials, proved to be too limited in both quantity and nature to be the ‘new mithril’ of their dreams. 

These alchemists claim that the transmuted new mithril, or 'almithket' as it has been nicknamed, would solve so many building, engineering, and manufacturing difficulties that society as Sarvonians know it could be transformed. All handtools could be made of the light, strong material - impervious buildings could be shaped of it -almithket vessels, pots, and platters would last for a thousand years. Almithket could be made as completely transparent as glass yet strong as black iron – as flexible as leather -  as malleable as clay - as light as shendarsilk – as thin as a Brownie hair…   Generally Almithrites make uneasy neighbors, as one never knows when their dwelling might catch fire, explode, or simply begin to rot from the accumulated gasses, odours, and chemicals stored within!

Numerous other small subsets of alchemical thought exist, not all of which are fully understood by the layman. However, in simple terms, we may categorize them as follows:  “Portalenes”, “Voidcarvers”, “Meditistics”, and “Babblers”. 

Some claim that they are seeking a way to discover and subsequently open a link between worlds which they call either the 'Portal of the Gods' or the 'Mirror of the Deities', others are trying to create philosophical and magical tools which would allow them to 'sculpt' the Void itself into reality, a new, completely physical world into which Caelereth could expand at necessity. Still other alchemists refuse to reveal any of their goals or beliefs and state only that they are engaged in a 'meditation of great import' which will undoubtedly 'change the world for the better'.  And of course there are the completely irrational:  mad visionaries,  nonsense-writers, obsessed fanatics, and sheer babblers.  Such extremists, while more demanding of attention, do only a disservice to the many devoted, creative artists who proudly wear the title of ‘Alchemist’.

Definitions:

Alchemy: the art of manipulating and categorizing physical elements in order to purify them spiritually
Alim:  to mesh, to combine, to fuse.  Usually translated as ‘to combine’
Allith:  the marvelous bubble of thought
Chemistu: the material of all things, substance, solidity.  Usually translated as ‘matter’
Sulvet: to melt – a method of achieving purification
Koajulet: to make solid – also one of the methods to achieve purification
Clak: element (only used for the basic building blocks of all matter (‘chemistu’))
Cylgromin Rock : a hypothetical stone to be used to reach perfection
Erme-tu Megistus : Famous gnomish author of the Alchemical Tome, one of the defining ‘scriptures’ of Alchemy
Trej Clak ( = three elements ): The building blocks of all materials and substance
 Giagula: the element of Air – gasses (gaseous emanations, winds, odours, perfumes, etc.)
 Behta: the element of Earth - solid matter (rocks, minerals, metals, wood, etc.)
 Bassha: the element of Water - liquids or any fluid-like substance (water, oil, sap, blood, etc.)
Gnuth: Fire – not considered an element but rather a catalyst or bonding agent between the other three; the amount of Fire present is what changes a substance (flame, heat, acids, electric reactions, radiation, etc.)
Elemene Tabulata : a ongoing codex which attempts to sort every known substance, thing, or concept into one of the three main elemental groups, or to assign it to a catalytic property.
Legus(i): theories, postulates, proposals, or conditions that must be met.  Usually translated as ‘laws’ of alchemy
Euxper(i): tests, trials, experiments, thought-checks, element-tests, researches, other new ways of combining/processing elements.  Usually translated as ‘tests’
Euxpet: to test, to experiment, to perform alchemical work
Phorma(i): receipts, formulae, records of euxperi, rules for combining substances to form compounds.  Usually translated as ‘alchemic receipts’ to distinguish them from cookery…
Chemik(i): from ‘chemistu’ (matter) – ingredients, items, sub-elements, materials.  Usually translated as ‘materials’
Substance:  Any basic or “pure” material of Caelereth -  gold, mithril, tar, alum,  etc.
Compound:  A mixture of various substances, i.e. alloys, natural minerals, potions, powders (fertilizers) – also called ‘Composites’ or ‘Mixtures’. 
Uen, Dos, Trej, Quak, Pthent, Hes, Sept, Oket, Noin, Daek: Gnomish numerals from one to ten
 <p></p>
« Last Edit: 05 February 2007, 11:33:06 by Bard Judith » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: 25 June 2005, 00:00:00 »

*hahaha*

Yippie! Now that's at least something!


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« Reply #2 on: 25 June 2005, 09:28:00 »

hooray!

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Arancaytar Ilyaran
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« Reply #3 on: 29 June 2005, 04:59:00 »

It's back? Yay!:)

Wow, it took long to read through all that, and as always I feel the headache coming on (though it's not as bad now, must be getting used to the philosophy).

One question:

Quote:
the belief that living creatures (part of the gods’ creation) can assist the gods in the ongoing process of creating new material.


Wouldn't this process be rather described as "changing materials into others" than creating new matter? After all, they don't try to create something from nothing, they seem to use ingredients most of the time. Or is this rather "creating new kinds of material"?

When I understand more of it,  you can trust I'll have more comments.;)  

Santharia, a place of world creation and roleplaying.

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« Reply #4 on: 27 August 2005, 16:08:00 »

we sould name same people that can do that al and ed ya hurray i am so glad someone found alchime.

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« Reply #5 on: 01 October 2005, 00:10:00 »

Garganellus, who started all this Alchemy discussion, was just spotted on the RPG board announcing his official comeback early October... Let's hope he'll show up here as well and help us with getting Alchemy done!


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« Reply #6 on: 01 October 2005, 00:22:00 »

Already at work and happy to see you all again.

A great resuming work has been done.

Just a bit of time to collect all and check what is needed here to move on.

Suggestions or requests of needs ?

I have the weekend to print and read a lot of stuff.
Where damn was that fool chemical ( ops,....not chemistry here !  Right ?  Ahhhhahahahah )


:crazy  

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« Reply #7 on: 01 October 2005, 05:24:00 »

Sweet, I love this. This is cool.
Quote:
A highly bondable non-metallic element discovered by the Gnomes in the year XXXX b.S. by the Arch-Alchemist. It is Domatium that impedes the process of “explosions” but creates some of the chemical effects highly

Try to stay away from words like bondable and chemical, ( I would use reactive and alchemical) they would not know of such terms. But nice entry.

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« Reply #8 on: 01 October 2005, 11:45:00 »

Yeah, hello again, Garganellus!

Judy has compiled a bunch of things in the entry above, though the original thread and all the comments there were lost due to a vicious ezBoard hacker, which affected lots of boards. But we have a good basis here, so if you have time again, maybe you can  read through it and try to work on the final entry:D  I'll then also see where to add some more philosophical details from my perspective:)  


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« Reply #9 on: 03 October 2005, 23:57:00 »

Very well.  You will get soon my comments and suggestions.

Thanks to all.


:crazy  

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« Reply #10 on: 04 October 2005, 01:20:00 »

Red for addings
Green for comments or suggestions.



Santharian Alchemy – the Collation


(Contributors: Artimidor Federkiel, Bard Judith, Baron Lkuth, Garganellus, Isilhir, Rayne Avalotus, Talia Sturmwind)


Overview:

Alchemy is the term used to describe the ancient art of ‘manipulating the composition, structure, properties, and reactions of matter’, which was to become a dark and complex blend of philosophy, scientific experimentation, worldview, and faith. The very word ‘alchemy’ comes from the collation, appropriately, of two ancient Gnomish words: ‘ Alim ‘ ( = to mesh) and ‘ Chemistu ‘ ( = material ). Alchemy’s main focus arises from the belief that living creatures (part of the gods’ creation) can assist the gods in the ongoing process of creating new material and/or manipulating the changing of the materials/substances.

Definition of Alchemy:

One of the driving influences of alchemical research was the Gnomish concept of Purification; the idea that at the beginning of creation only completely pure substances formed the entire cosmological realm . Affected by various negative influences such as Coór the Dark God, and the passions and jealousies that arose among the Twelve, the pure creation became infected or tainted with various admixtures of substances. In Gnomish culture it is held that Alchemy’s end goal is to purify all infected substances, in order to restore the world to its original perfection. This natural state may be achieved through performing countless Euxperi (tests) and following Phormai (receipts, formulae)

Gnomish legends and symbols of Alchemy have always concerned themselves with the purification of metals following the method of ‘ Sulvet’ (melt) and ‘Koajulet’ (make solid. These methods are used also for the production of medical powders and peculiar essences.) Alchemy is thus a means of attempting to connect metals to the cosmological universe and the divine pantheon, so that each transformation is not chaotic and random, but rather organized by the influences of the constellations and the benevolence of the gods. Although Alchemy is not magic, some of its results seem almost magical, as it affects and alters the physical forms that comprise the world of Caelereth.

The concept of Alchemy developed slowly and mainly on a philosophical basis, gnomes and elves being the principal two races interested in this ‘search for perfection’. In time, Alchemy spread out among the other races of Sarvonia, each race attempting to apply its concepts to its own culture and beliefs. Alchemy became a widespread art, seeking to destroy/change the properties of/refine imperfect substances in order to please the gods, benefit sentient kind, and change the world. All sorts of applications and connections were sought in relation to medicine, religion, cosmology, writing, philosophy, magic and social aspects. And of course, various themes and branches of the art developed (see below), each with a slightly different focus and technique, but all moving towards the same goals. Many errors and quite a bit of superstitious meandering (‘irrelevant gibberish!’ states one vexed scholar) sprang up in the unwieldy field of alchemical research and writing, but slowly more credence was given to the work of one particular gnome author, Erme-Tu Megistus. His collected writings became known as the “Alchemical Tome”, and are considered almost as authoritative as a divinely-inspired scripture among the gnomes.

To this day, however, Alchemy’s most interesting and productive results are still achieved by the Gnomish race from whence it sprang; our Gnome alchemists and researchers are constantly considering realistic applications and practical possibilities of this art in daily life. The Gnome culture improved the techniques of Distillation - trying to extract the ‘ spirit ‘ or essence from the substance - with the goal to produce elixirs able to cure infections and other illnesses. These studies increased the knowledge about acids, salts and healing liquids in order to improve the quality of living. And we still give great alchemists the title of ‘Magistus’ or ‘Magis’ in honour of Erme-Tu!

Some Basic Concepts in Alchemy:


The ‘Trej Clak’ ( = three elements ):

Bassha = Water

Giagula = Air

Behta = Earth

These elements are by concept the basis of all corporal substance, and all matter is formed by some combination of the three in varying proportions. Alchemy attempts to categorize and define everything by these three elements. Note that our fourth Santharian element, Fire (or Gnuuth in Gnomish), is seen only as an igniter or catalyst; it is not considered an original element, but as a transient state between air and earth. This rather noticeable difference in philosophic thought has created a good many discussions, expositions, and rationalizations as the various alchemists try to justify their categorizations!


Elemene Tabulata (“The Table of Elements)

Gnomes in their researches developed a type of ever-changing compendium or codex, which is intended to contain the main Alchemy concepts and their applications. This codex covers the associations of things, symbols, concepts and abstracts with the known natural (pure) elements. The Elemene Tabulata also attempts to describe various substances, compounds, and alchemical processes, as well as the archetypes and symbols associated with them. Part of an alchemist’s duty is to constantly be sorting objects and concepts around him or her, and adding to the Elemene Tabulata - which should be seen as a living organism, vital and growing, rather than a static list – as well as cross-checking all additions with other alchemists. It is a work always in progress, every gnomish alchemist alive constantly struggling to find new connections and definitions to add to the codex – some working together, some jealously hoarding their secrets – but all in the hopes that when the great Elemene Tabulata is finally complete, a new age of beauty and power will transform the universe.

Human alchemists have struggled with this concept: “Does this book exist or not? Or is it rather the ultimate book of wisdom all gnomes strive to create? Maybe this book is constantly re-written, bearing always the same title, but from different gnomes, stressing different aspects? The book where all explanations are contained…. Ah, a tempting dream for a scholar…”

The Cylgromin Rock (“The Life-within Rock”)

It is said to be the key to the perfect transformation of all materials . It is a strong gnomish belief that the Cylgromin Rock is the basis of life. Cylgromin is unable to produce anything, but it is believed to be able to transform the substances that form a particular object in a more perfect way, perhaps also giving it magical ethereal powers, thanks to its new form and structure.
It is said to be a chimera object in human cultures; the Cylgromin Rock may be no more than a legend or a philosophical image, though some alchemists strive to create it in actual fact. Many of the elements we know that do exist in Caelereth share a universal pattern, so perhaps many more exist that we don't know about, capable of causing transformations and reactions of which even the Gnomes have not yet dreamed…

“The Cylgromin would be the "ideal" rock, the completely pure rock, the rock archetype….[it] represents the idea of rock, of matter itself. It is the ‘mirror of the Gods’ which is the true representation of divine perfection, and thus godly…” Sage Artimidor Federkiel, on Alchemy

The Allith

This is primarily an elven concept, and is not well-comprehended by other races. However, as far as we have been able to determine, elvish alchemists are not only striving to make sense of their physical world by combining things from different elemental groups but also working for the ultimate goal of creating a miniature replica of an ideal world – ‘a crystalized bubble of Avanean thought’, as one elven philosopher put it. We may theorize that this is the elven equivalent of the Cylgromin Rock, or perhaps a powerful sphere of mystic energy like the “Tear of Ava”? Or perhaps it is a thought-construct which in its complexity is not understandable by shorter-lived minds…

Domatium

A highly bondable non-metallic element discovered by the Gnomes in the year XXXX b.S. by the Arch-Alchemist. It is Domatium that impedes the process of “explosions” but creates some of the chemical effects highly unique to Caelereth, effects of Alchemical Transmutation that can easily be confused with magic by the uninformed "locals."
A little adding about how it works ?



The Historical Development of Alchemy:

It is impossible to supply a date for the birth of Alchemy, because it was studied and developed in different times and races from various points of view. However, there are a few significant ‘signposts’ along the way which our Compendium historiographers have been able to identify for you!

Human Alchemy

The first studies on Alchemy among the men races started firstly among the Sophronians and then it spread to the other human races. The Sophronians had noticed that the earth kept its fertility thanks also to the ‘ humus’ , residual substances from leaves and dead animals. This aspect of the death returning to the earth seemed to them like a sort of life closing circle.
So, in order to stop this circling life and to keep inalterated the dead bodies of their men, they developed Alchemy to mummify the dead corpses. In such a way they hoped to open a sort of gate toward the immortality.
In this way the Sophronians, studying the mummification process and applying it , discovered that certain substances used to mummify, were also able to cure certain illnesses of the natural creatures. Nevertheless they never succeeded in the goal to develop such benefits .
Only many years later, when the gnome culture spread among men, a real curative Alchemy was developed and increased thanks to the gnomes who pushed on the argument to a more applicative field : the healing powders.

Elven Alchemy

“Elven alchemy seeks to understand the relationship of the physical universe to the spiritual/philosophical one, ultimately to recreate the perfection of the original Dream of Ava in a crystallized miniature ‘thought-bubble’, which they refer to as ‘The Avalith’…”

Nearly some years before, also the elven society developed their form of Alchemy, but starting from a different approach. The elvish tribe of the Astyrhim had been interested to see every aspect of Life as a interaction between the Ugly and the Beauty, like a sort of opposition between the Gods Ava and Coor. From this contrast arose the religious aspect of Alchemy.
In this matter , elves were the first to develop the idea of Purification in Alchemy, trying to reach the Perfection studying the balance of good and evil in all aspects of their life. Nevertheless they only kept this concept at the religious and cosmological level.
They tried to check how Winds and Gods acted on their life, hoping to reach a better and higher level of coscience, perhaps re-balancing the good and evil of each creature essence.
Nevertheless also they kept their studies on a religious level only and once again it was the Gnome society who developed a concrete way to apply their knowledge to the religious part of Alchemy : Runes and Symbols.


Gnomish Alchemy

Also the gnomes had their approach toward Alchemy and with time it demonstrated to be the more effective and productive. In particular it was the Daran culture to act first of all , supporting the concept of Purification, but mainly on the substance of the universe. They pushed on the idea that Purification ( and so Perfection ) can be reached through a process of manipulation of substances, making so Alchemy an art. They first applied the art of ‘ melt and make solid ‘ to the metals. In such a way they were the first race to get some concrete results , producing new metals increasing their characteristics.
Then, while they were pushing on their studies in the Distillation field of elixirs, the gnome race started to meet and study the knowledge of elves and men in the Alchemy field. Immediately gnomes found a multitude of applications for those concepts developed by the other races. In particular Gnomes discovered the possibility to form new mixtures thanks to the healing powders used by men in their mummification processes and moreover extended their alchemical knowledge to the cosmological and religious aspects , increasing the use of runes and symbols , in their creative applications, thanks to the elven races.

After many years of checks and trials , making a fusion of all these knowledge, Gnomes reached an excellent mastership in the Alchemy, so that the civilized world recognized them as the best alchemists in such art.

Inks, paints, pigments, dyes, mordants, candles, oils, soaps, tinctures, adhesives, cleansers, varnishes, resins, fertilizers, pest-banes and weed-blights are only the most common articles which the Gnomes provide for Santharia.



Alchemical Disciplines and Practices:

As Alchemy developed, certain similarities in practices and beliefs began to coalesce; currently it is considered that five main ‘streams’ or styles of alchemical study exist, each with their own unique focus. A distinction between 'pure alchemy' and 'applied alchemy' became clear, particularly as the gnomes sought to apply what they had learned to make life better, and as the assorted races of Caelereth began to learn and practice alchemy in their own ways.

There are of course any number of 'schools of thought' in the philosophy of alchemy, each with their own concentration; however, the 'Trigustemes', the 'Cylgromists', the 'Xeuan Monks', the 'Larcadians', and the 'Amithrites' are the most well-known. (Please note: only the common Tharian names are given here for each school)

TRIGUSTEMES: The Trigustemes believe in applied alchemy. They concentrate on distilling, reducing, diluting, concentrating, or in other ways transmuting the elements around them to create 'pure' or 'new' forms. They claim to be the only branch of alchemy which benefits humanity (or other sentient beings) immediately, and have somewhat of an attitude of amused disdain for the more theoretical strains. One is more likely to encounter a Trigusteme in a public setting, across a shop counter or vending his wares as a travelling peddlar, so they are the most widely recognized representatives of alchemy to the non-academic. The Gnorian alchemists, for example are almost all Trigustemes, dealing in salt, glass, dye, calx (cement) and other such practical products, as are a majority of the Golgnomes. The practical hobbits and even more earthy-minded Thergerim, if they choose alchemy as a profession at all, invariably work within this school.

CYLGROMISTS: The alchemic branch of the Cylgromists arose directly from the Trigusteme philosophies, but chose to focus its attention on creating one single completely purified item - the Cylgromin Rock. It is not completely clear to non-alchemists what the end goal of this might be, but it has been theorized that this 'perfect stone' might be utilized as a template to create other 'perfect' substances, and possibly even to assist in purifying the substance of mankind... Cylgromists get their hands equally as dirty as Trigustemes, but with less apparent result. However, they are the writers and recounters, by and large, who are responsible for recording the various Phormai (receipts or formulae) which they have found to have a consistent, reproducible effect. A great deal of knowledge has been preserved for other Euxperfi (testers, alchemists) in this way.  It is said that they have developed and kept secret the main aspects of the Elemene Tabulata.

XEUANS: Xeuan Monks - a spiritual, arrational movement in alchemy, which is constantly seeking to achieve the concept of oneness with the universe, a state of mind achieved by focusing on the interconnectedness of all things and the Xeua between them. When that state of mind, known as 'Xeuan', is finally reached, the corporal body dissipates into the whole. The Xeuan philosophy is characterized by almost austere simplicity of lifestyle, a desire to avoid possessions, decoration, or emotions, and a disregard for personal comfort. Supposedly this allows the spirit freedom to lift its focus free from the corporeal shell. Elves in particular are drawn towards this alchemical school, though some humans, gnomes, and Brownies also have been found in the seclusion of the Malise Islands monastery (off the western coast of Manthria, across from the Tolonian Waist of Sarvonia).    How do these monks interact with Alchemy ?  Where is the connection ?  Better to add something more clear to explain what Alchemy has to do with them.

LARCADIANS: Larcadians lean towards a less arcane type of theoreticizing, which they believe will bring a new utopian Caelereth to life - if only they could convince everyone to visualize it along with them, Arethia Larcadia (a communal society without greed, anger, or other hurtful passions) could be achieved! They are also attempting to ratify a set of writings - rules for living - which they call the Cadian Codex, also a work in progress. Many Daran Gnomes are such optimistic Larcadians and often ‘proselytize’ hopefully to the humans among whom they live. At the very least this school of alchemy has achieved great cross-cultural/cross-racial harmony and promoted a positive mindset in their various communities!

ALMITHRITES: Finally, of course, there are the Almithrites, whom as everyone knows are the experimental dreamers who are trying to recreate mithril, or transform other metals into it. Their particular branch of alchemy gained many adherents when mithrilan was ‘rediscovered’ by a talented Varcopasian swordsmith (see the Mithrilan entry), but the new metallic additive, though marvelously improving the qualities of many other materials, proved to be too limited in both quantity and nature to be the ‘new mithril’ of their dreams.
These alchemists claim that the transmuted new mithril, or 'almithket' as it has been nicknamed, would solve so many building, engineering, and manufacturing difficulties that society as Sarvonians know it could be transformed. All handtools could be made of the light, strong material - impervious buildings could be shaped of it -almithket vessels, pots, and platters would last for a thousand years. Almithket could be made as completely transparent as glass yet strong as black iron – as flexible as leather - as malleable as clay - as light as shendarsilk – as thin as a Brownie hair… Generally Almithrites make uneasy neighbours, as one never knows when their dwelling might catch fire, explode, or simply begin to rot from the accumulated gasses, odours, and chemicals stored within!

Numerous other small subsets of alchemical thought exist, not all of which are fully understood by the layman. However, in simple terms, we may categorize them as follows: “Portalenes”, “Voidcarvers”, “Meditistics”, and “Babblers”.

Some claim that they are seeking a way to discover and subsequently open a link between worlds which they call either the 'Portal of the Gods' or the 'Mirror of the Deities', others are trying to create philosophical and magical tools which would allow them to 'sculpt' the Void itself into reality, a new, completely physical world into which Caelereth could expand at necessity. Still other alchemists refuse to reveal any of their goals or beliefs and state only that they are engaged in a 'meditation of great import' which will undoubtedly 'change the world for the better'. And of course there are the completely irrational: mad visionaries, nonsense-writers, obsessed fanatics, and sheer babblers. Such extremists, while more demanding of attention, do only a disservice to the many devoted, creative artists who proudly wear the title of ‘Alchemist’.

Definitions:

Alchemy: the art of manipulating and categorizing physical elements in order to purify them spiritually
Alim: to mesh, to combine, to fuse. Usually translated as ‘to combine’
Allith: the marvelous bubble of thought
Chemistu: the material of all things, substance, solidity. Usually translated as ‘matter’
Sulvet: to melt – a method of achieving purification
Koajulet: to make solid – also one of the methods to achieve purification
Clak: element (only used for the basic building blocks of all matter (‘chemistu’))
Cylgromin Rock : a hypothetical stone to be used to reach perfection
Erme-tu Megistus : Famous gnomish author of the Alchemical Tome, one of the defining ‘scriptures’ of Alchemy
Trej Clak ( = three elements ): The building blocks of all materials and substance
Giagula: the element of Air – gasses (gaseous emanations, winds, odours, perfumes, etc.)
Behta: the element of Earth - solid matter (rocks, minerals, metals, wood, etc.)
Bassha: the element of Water - liquids or any fluid-like substance (water, oil, sap, blood, etc.)
Gnuth: Fire – not considered an element but rather a catalyst or bonding agent between the other three; the amount of Fire present is what changes a substance (flame, heat, acids, electric reactions, radiation, etc.)
Elemene Tabulata : a ongoing codex which attempts to sort every known substance, thing, or concept into one of the three main elemental groups, or to assign it to a catalytic property.
Legus(i): theories, postulates, proposals, or conditions that must be met. Usually translated as ‘laws’ of alchemy
Euxper(i): tests, trials, experiments, thought-checks, element-tests, researches, other new ways of combining/processing elements. Usually translated as ‘tests’
Euxpet: to test, to experiment, to perform alchemical work
Phorma(i): receipts, formulae, records of euxperi, rules for combining substances to form compounds. Usually translated as ‘alchemic receipts’ to distinguish them from cookery…
Chemik(i): from ‘chemistu’ (matter) – ingredients, items, sub-elements, materials. Usually translated as ‘materials’
Substance: Any basic or “pure” material of Caelereth - gold, mithril, tar, alum, etc.
Compound: A mixture of various substances, i.e. alloys, natural minerals, potions, powders (fertilizers) – also called ‘Composites’ or ‘Mixtures’.
Uen, Dos, Trej, Quak, Pthent, Hes, Sept, Oket, Noin, Daek: Gnomish numerals from one to ten



By the way,  I am just thinking if other addings of interaction with other stuff of Caelereth could be developed now or in the follwing times.   It depends if we want a unique complete thing or a continual argument developed step by step with time.

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Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #11 on: 04 October 2005, 03:11:00 »

Do we now use the word "chemical", or should we try to describe it with other words?

I don't know either, if "utopian" or "proselytise" should be used - they are refferring very much to earthern visions or historical group of people.
It is different to the deliberate use of the "Larcadia" in reference to "New Arcadia".    

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« Reply #12 on: 05 October 2005, 00:36:00 »

I was just reading the ELEMENTS STUFF on the website reference in MIscellaneaous when i have found this :



THE AÉR'AÍ'CHANÍA, THE ELEMENTS


Elvish word (plural), literally translated as the "Very-First-of-All", used synonymously in the meaning of "the Elements": Wind, Earth, Water and Fire plus the connecting principle of the Xeuá as is related in the elven myth of the Cárpa'dosía. The elements all sprang from the first representation of Avá in the world, the element of the wind. Therefore the world is called Aér'aí'chán as it is one element which is represented in all four and together, joined through the Xeuá, these Aér'aí'chanía form the existence of the world. For more details see the singular form, Aér'aí'chán.

Isn't this in contrast with what we have developed till now about the three elements in alchemy and the FIRE beeing only an Ignitor ?


I agree with
Talia also about her appoints :  We should find an alternative word for Utopia.  Proposals ?
And for chemical we should think also.  Time to check.

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« Reply #13 on: 05 October 2005, 03:14:00 »

You are right, but there is a pointer already , how to solve this problem

Quote:
. Note that our fourth Santharian element, Fire (or Gnuuth in Gnomish), is seen only as an igniter or catalyst; it is not considered an original element, but as a transient state between air and earth. This rather noticeable difference in philosophic thought has created a good many discussions, expositions, and rationalizations as the various alchemists try to justify their categorizations!


What you quote is NOW the belief of the elves (and humans) , it was the concept when the site started, but now it is "reduced " to elven belief only, alchemists might have a different opinion, and elven alchemists might get in trouble with their belief, yes.

***Astropic of the day***
"For me there is only the traveling on paths that have heart, on any path   that may have heart. There I travel, and the only worthwhile challenge is to traverse its full length. And there I travel looking, looking, breathlessly. ~Don Juan"

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« Reply #14 on: 05 October 2005, 12:05:00 »

Yes, this is a very old entry. In the meantime 3 elements (all except Wind) have been described in detail on the site by Maglor Grubb with my assistance. It is planned to make a proper entry on the Elements once all are done. - Then would also be the time to integrate the role of Fire in alchemy in the Fire Element entry. Because alchemists don't particularly share the Ximaxian or elven approach on the Elements as you can see. But neither do Brownies, who believe in wood and metal as elements and what not.


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Edited by: Artimidor Federkiel at: 10/4/05 20:05
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