To quote Alpha Chi Sigma Nationals:
"Alchemy itself is most often described as the ancient tradition of sacred chemistry by which one discovers the truth about the nature, both spiritual and temporal, of reality, its structure, laws and functions."
The following are some major points of interest in regards to alchemy. However, it is important to realize that the information presented here is only a scratch on the surface. What lies beneath is a powerful foundation to much of our modern science.
In the ancient days, there were only four elements, Earth, Air, Fire, and Water.
Only a few metals were known to the alchemists, the "seven metals of the Ancients:" gold, silver, iron, mercury, tin, copper, and lead. These seven metals were named after the seven gods of the planets.
These seven metals not only correspond to gods and the planets, but also the days of the week. The origins of the names "Sunday" and "Saturday" are evident. "Monday" is a corruption of "mooneday" (old English). Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday are derived from the Scandinavian gods Tyr (Mars), Woden (or Odin, Mercury), Thor (Jupiter), and Frigga, wife of Odin. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, Friday has often been erroneously attributed to the Scandinavian god, Freyr, or Venus.
For each of the Zodiacal signs there is a corresponding alchemical process, some of which—calcination, solution, digestion, distillation, sublimation, separation, fermentation—are recognizable to us now. Projection was the ultimate process—transmutation.