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Alchemical MercuryA Theory of Ambivalence$
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Karen Pinkus

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804760324

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804760324.001.0001

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Excursus: Counterfeiting

Excursus: Counterfeiting

(p.137) Excursus: Counterfeiting
Alchemical Mercury
Stanford University Press

This chapter, which focuses on the field and act of counterfeiting, considers the counterfeiting of paper money and gold. It argues that the counterfeiter-sophist-alchemist does not divulge his method. If he succeeds, he may disappear from public life like the counterfeiter, but might also continue his work (in secret) or teach the art to a select few adepts or to his sons. Because alchemy is so difficult and is practiced on such a minute scale—if indeed one accepts that it is practiced at all— it does not disrupt the national economy in any significant way.

Keywords:   counterfeiting, counterfeiters, alchemy, money, gold

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