Karen Maitland reveals the medieval recipe for turning iron into silver…

Posted on: 11/08/2015 with tags: alchemy, company of liars, dangerous art of alchemy, eshort, hforhistory, iron to silver, karen maitland, the raven's head

Recipe for Changing Iron into Silver

Take as many fresh toads as you can find that are carrying poison. Gather white hellebore* and asphodels**. Pound the toads and herbs together and mix with vinegar and sublimated white sulphur. Drop iron into this mixture and you shall have silver.

*White hellebore is a highly toxic herb that was used in the Middle Ages as rodent poison.

**Asphodel is a Mediterranean plant known the Flower-of-the-Dead. It bears a candle-like spike of white flowers and was frequently planted around tombs, as the dead were thought to feed on the roots.

Karen Maitland’s e-short – THE DANGEROUS ART OF ALCHEMY is published on 13th August

Amy Dolman

Post author: Amy Dolman

Amy is responsible for the smooth running of the H for History website, and enjoys reading history-based fantasy. She also like to photograph sites of historical interest in her spare time with a cup of bovril and a pork pie for company. Favourite period of history: Ancient; Favourite historical read: Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave; Upcoming book i'm most looking forward to: Mister Memory by Marcus Sedgwick

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