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Basilius Valentinus
BASILIUS VALENTINUS.

BASILIUS VALENTINUS.

Supposed Benedictine monk of the fourteenth century, but no trace of him has ever been found in the monastaries of Germany, where he supposedly worked. Current research suggests that this name is more likely a pseudonym for Johann Thölde, who wrote the Haligraphia in 1603, a work on the mineralogy and economy of salt.

Biographical references: Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Poggendorff: 1, cols. 112-3.

1. German, 1604 [First edition].
Triumph Wagen Antimonii Allen / so den grund suchen der uhralten Medicin/ Auch zu der Hermetischen Philosphey beliebnis tragen / Zu gut publiciret / und an Tag geben / Durch Johann Thölden. Mit einer Vorrede/ Doctoris Joachimi Tanckii. ... Leipzig, In verlegung Jacob Apels. Druckts Jacob Popporeich. 1604.

8°: [44], 694 (i.e., 622), [29] p. Pages 608-622 incorrectly numbered 680-694; other errors in paging. Title page in red and black.

Rare. In the Triumph Wagen Antimonii, the author made the first detailed description of antimony and its compounds (preparation of antimony trioxide). This work brings together many facts and speculations on the chemistry of antimony, its combinations and its use in medicine. The descriptions of the preparations of the various compounds are written in a clear style. The book also contains translations of the works of Bacon, Rodocher and Issacus Hollandus. Many chemical preparations of the first importance are described in this work, and Basilius Valentinus has been hailed as the Father of Modern Chemistry. In his honor the mineral valentinite, an antimony oxide, was named in the nineteenth century.

The book contains the following treatises, which are followed by an index: 1. Triumph Wagen Antimonii, Fratris Basilii Valentini (p. 1-264). 2. Von der Tinctur oder Oleo Stibii, Rogeri Baconis Angli (p. 265-296). 3. Von den Particular und Universal Tincturen (p. 297-397). 4. Vom Stein der Weisen; Theorica unnd Practica Georgii Phædronis Rodocheri (p. 399-450). 5. Der uhralter Ritterkrieg (p. 451-476). 6. Opus Saturni Isaaci Hollandi (p. 477-523). 7. Philosophisch Betrachtung, von der materia Lapidis und seiner Bereitung (p. 525-574). 8. De occulta philosophia chemicorum (p. 577-694, i.e., 622).

Bibliographical references: Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Roller & Goodman, Catalogue, 1976: 1, 85. VD17: 12:111147B. Wang, Chang Yu., Antimony: its history, chemistry, mineralogy, geology, metallurgy, uses, preparations, analysis, production, and valuation; with complete bibliographies. Second edition. London, Charles Griffin and Co., 1919. x, 217 p., illus [p. 2-3].

2. German, 1611.
TriumphWagen Antimonii, Fratris Basilii Valentini, Benedicter Ordens Allen/ so den Grund suchen der uhralten Medicin/ Auch zu der Hermetischen Philosophy beliebnis tragen/ Zu gut publiciret/ und an Tag geben/ Durch Johann Thölden Hessum. Mit einer Vorrede/ Doctoris Joachimi Tanckii ... Leipzig, Apel; Leipzig, Am Ende, 1611.

8°: [32], 598, [24] p. Title page in red and black. Very scarce.

Bibliographical references: VD17: 32:645972Q.

3. German, 1624.
Triumph Wagen Antimonii Fratris Basilii Valentini ... geben durch Johann Thölden ... Leipzig, In Vorlegung Bartholomaei Voigts, gedruckt bey Friederich Lanckisch, 1624.

8°: [30], 598, [24] p.

Rare. Preface dated 1 May, 1604 by Joachim Tanckius & dedic. poems. This ed. also contains poems by Roger Bacon et al. Text in German and Latin. Includes index.

4. German, 1676.
Triumph-Wagen Antimonii. Samt noch sieben andern Tractätlein an den Tag gegeben durch J. Thölden. Nürnberg, Lochner für Hoffmann, 1676.

8°: [14], 467, [20] p. Engraved frontispiece. Rare.

Bibliographical references: Caillet, Manuel, 1912: no. 809. Chorinski: p. 964. Duveen, Bibliotheca Alchemica et Chemica, 1965: p. 47. Ferchl: p. 25. Ferguson, Bibliotheca Chemica, 1906: 1, p. 78. Honeyman Sale: no. 240. Kopp, Geschichte der Chemie, 1843-7: 1, p. 29. NLM 17th Century Books (Krivatsy): no. 874. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Schmieder, Geschichte der Alchemie, 1927: p. 205. VD17: 3:602177H.

English Editions

5. English, 1661.
The triumphant chariot of antimony being a conscientious discovery of the many real transcendent excellencies included in that mineral written by Basil Valentine; by J.H. Oxon. London, Printed for W.S., 1661.

8°: 175 p., illus.

Rare. Subject Antimony - Therapeutic use - Early works to 1800.

Bibliographical references: Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203.

6. English, 1678.
Basil Valentine, his Triumphant chariot of antimony, with annotations of Theodore Kirkringius. M.D. With The true book of the learned Synesius, a Greek abbot, taken out of the emperour's library, concerning the philosopher's stone. London, D. Newman, 1678.

12°: [18], 1-160 p. [2], 163-176 p. "The true book" has special t.-p. "The true book" has special t.-p. Illustrated with 5 engraved plates, showing chemical vessels, retorts etc. Page size: 175 x 105 mm.

Rare. This translation (the second in English) of Valentine's famous treatise was made by Richard Russell, who translated several alchemical works in the 17th Century. It was first published in 1604 and is regarded as one of the earliest monographs on a chemical element ... there is no doubt but that his treatise brought together into one volume the facts of the chemistry of antimony and its combinations, and its uses in medicine in a form that made his book the standard work on that subject for many decades. The work is, in far as its chemistry is concerned, clear and comprehensible for its time.

Bibliographical references: Duveen, Bibliotheca Alchemica et Chemica, 1965: 49. NLM 17th Century Books (Krivatsy): 879. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Sallander, Bibliotheca Walleriana, 1955: no. 11056. Stillman, Story of Early Chemistry, 1924: p. ??. Wellcome Catalog (Books): 2, p. 111.

7. English, 1893.
The Triumphal Chariot of Antimony. By Basilius Valentinus. With The Commentary of Theodore Kerckringius - A Doctor of Medicine.Being the Latin Version published at Amsterdam in the year 1685 Translated into English with a biographical preface by A.E.Waite. London, James Elliott and Co., 1893.

12°: xxxiii, 204 p., illus. Engraved frontispiece of the Chariot. Engraved title page. Edited by A.E. Waite.

Very scarce. An extremely uncommon, almost legendary book on European Alchemy, rendered into English for the first time in 1893.

Bibliographical references: Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203.

8. English, 1671 [English transl.].
Of natural & supernatural things: also of the first tincture, root, and spirit of metals and minerals, how the same are conceived, generated, brought forth, changed, and augmented [by] Basilius Valentinus. Translated out of high Dutch by Daniel Cable; whereunto is added Frier Roger Bacon, Of the medicine or tincture of antimony; Mr. John Isaac Holland, his Work of Saturn; and Alex. Van Suchten, Of the secrets of antimony. London, Printed and are to be sold by Moses Pitt, 1671.

8°: 238 p., [8], 122 p.

Rare. Cable, Daniel. // Bacon, Roger, 1214?-1294. // Hollandus, Johan Isaäc, 15th cent. // Suchten, Alexander von, ca. 1520-ca. 1590.

Bibliographical references: Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Wing: B-1020.

9. Latin, 1671 [Latin transl.].
Commentarius in Currum Triumphalem. Antimonii Basilii Valentini, á se Latinitate donatum. Amsterdam, Andreæ Frisii, 1671.

12°: Engraved frontisp. (by R. de Hooge), (22), 342, (18) p. Engraved title vignette. With all 5 full-page engravings in the text (showing chemical apparatus).

Rare. First latin edition of his Commentary on Basilius's work on antimony, together with the text of "Currus". "Kerckring practised medicine several years in Amsterdam, and was highly estimated for his learning, skill, and acumen, by Leibnitz....and others" (Ferguson).

1685: Another edition. Osler, no. 4148.

Bibliographical references: Ferguson, Bibliotheca Chemica, 1906: 1, p. 78, 458.

10. German, 1603 [First edition].
Von den natürlichen unnd ubernatürlichen Dingen trewlich eröffnet durch Fratris Basilium Valentium ... im Druck publiciert durch Iohan Thölden Hessum. Leipzig, In Vorlegung Jacob Apels, 1603.

8°: [8], 124, [2] p.

Rare. This alchemical work contains in chapter 2 is the author's Von der ersten Tinctur, Wurtzel und Geiste der Metallen und Mineralien. Important preface addressed to his brother-in-law, Joachim Tanckius and Johann Hartmann, 20. December 1602.

Bibliographical references: VD17: 12:655568L.

11. German, 1611.
Von den Natürlichen unnd ubernatürlichen Dingen Auch von der ersten Tinctur, Wurtzel und Geiste der Metallen und Mineralien/ wie dieselbe entpfangen/ außgekochet/ geboren/ verändert und vermehret werden / Trewlich eröffnet durch Fratrem Basilium Valentinum, Benedicter Ordens. Unnd nunmehr aus seiner eigenen Handschrifft in Druck publiciret, Durch Johann Tholden Hessum ... Leipzig, Apel; Leipzig, AmEnde, 1611.

8°: [8], 119, [4] p. Title in red and black. Rare.

Bibliographical references: VD17: 14:628347G.

12. Latin, 1676 [Latin transl.].
Basilii Valentini | Philosophi & Chymici Experientissimi | Tractatus Chymico-Philosophicus | De | Rebus Naturalibus | & Supernaturalibus. | Metallorvm & Mineralivm. | [vignette] | Francofurti Ad Moenum | Sumptibus Jacobi Gothofredi Seyler. | M. DC. LXXVI.

8°: 64 p.

Rare. Translation of Von den natürlichen unnd ubernatürlichen Dingen.

Bibliographical references: LKG: XVI 55. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203.

13. Latin, 1679 [Reissue].
Basilii Valentini Philosophi & Chymici Experientissimi Tractatus Chymico-Philosophicus De Rebus Naturalibus Et Supernaturalibus: Metallorum & Mineralium. Francofurti ad Moenum, Seyler, 1679.

8°: 64 p. Rare.

Bibliographical references: VD17: VD17 23:664474E.

14. Latin, 1646.
Currus triumphalis antimonii. E germanico in latinum versum operâ P. J. Fabri. Toulouse, P. Bosc, 1646.

8°: [26], 398 p., title page vignette.

Rare. With detailed marginal comments by the French alchemist P. Fabri printed throughout the text, which provide early Latin explanations to one of the basic alchemical texts.

Bibliographical references: Duveen, Bibliotheca Alchemica et Chemica, 1965: p. 48. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 2, p. 183-203. Wellcome Catalog (Books): 2, p. 111.

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