Wednesday, March 28, 2012

McLean summarizes Newman on Starkey/Philalethes

Newman's article in 'Alchemy Revisted' which was based on a paper
presented at the Groeningen conference on the history of alchemy
in 1989 is entitled 'The Authorship of the Introitus Apertus ad Occlusum
Regis Palatium'.

The crux of Newman's analysis seems to be that processes for
making the star-regulus of Antimony and some related processes
imnoving an amalgamation presented in Starkey's 'Key' are very
similar to that outlined in Philalethes' 'Introitus' - "close
textual affiliation" is the term Newman uses.

Newman suggests, from textual analysis, that Starkey's 'Key' is based
on an earlier work of Alexander von Suchten, rather than being taken
from Philalethes' 'Introitus', and further concludes that Starkey himself
wrote the 'Introitus'. He also found that there is no mention of Philalethes
in Starkey's own private journals from the 1650's, though he openly refers
to Suchten. Newman finds it odd that Starkey does not mention
Philalethes in his private notebooks, and thus concludes that he was
not mentioned because Starkey knew he did not exist, i.e. because
he himself wrote the Philalethes text.
-Adam McLean in the Alchemy Academy Archive