Chemistry International Blank Image
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Chemistry International Blank Image Chemistry International Blank Image Chemistry International Blank Image
Chemistry International Blank Image
Chemistry International Blank Image
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Current Issue
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Past Issues
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Officer's Columns
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Features
Chemistry International Blank Image
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Up for Discussion
Chemistry International Text Image Link to IUPAC Wire
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Project Place
Chemistry International Text Image Link to imPACt
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Bookworm
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Internet Connections
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Conference Call
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Where 2B and Y
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Symposia
Chemistry International Text Image Link to CI Indexes
Chemistry International Text Image Link to CI Editor
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Search Function
Chemistry International Text Image Link to Information

 

Chemistry International Text Image Link to Previous Issue Chemistry International Text Image Link to Previous Page Chemistry International Text Image Link to This TOC Chemistry International Text Image Link to Next Page Chemistry International Text Image Link to Next Issue

Vol. 30 No. 2
March-April 2008

Stamps International |

See also www.iupac.org/publications/ci/indexes/stamps.html


The Father of Toxicology?

Much has been written about Paracelsus (1493–1541), the famous alchemist, physician, and astrologer of the sixteenth century, often cited for coining the phrase “the dose makes the poison.” Never the unpretentious type, he was born Theophrastus Philippus Aureolus Bombastus von Hohenheim in Einsiedeln, Switzerland, but changed his name to Paracelsus (meaning “greater than Celsus”) after the renowned first-century Roman encyclopedist Aulus Cornelius Celsus. Most significantly, Paracelsus pioneered the medical use of certain elements, minerals, and chemical compounds, including mercury and opium, and he conducted experiments to learn about the human body and the nature of disease.

The stamp shown here was issued in Germany on 10 November 1993 to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Paracelsus’s birth. The stamp features his likeness, based on a 1538 etching attributed to Augustin Hirschvogel, a German artist and mathematician known primarily for his etchings. In addition, the stamp displays (clockwise, starting from the lower left corner) the alchemical symbols of iron, air, silver, mercury, sulfur, salt, potash, and tin, all essential tools in the alchemists’ armamentarium. Interestingly, some of these symbols were also associated with celestial bodies known at the time, such as Mars (iron), the Moon (silver), and Jupiter (tin).

Written by Daniel Rabinovich <drabinov@email.uncc.edu>.


Page last modified 19 March 2008.
Copyright © 2003-2008 International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.
Questions regarding the website, please contact edit.ci@iupac.org
Link to CI Home Page Link to IUPAC E-News Link to IUPAC Home Page