In the category of things I’d probably figure out fairly quickly if I ever stopped to think about it are alchemy texts.* There are a ton of alchemy texts. Which makes sense, when you think about it, because alchemy has been around for about 2500 years and was practiced in many, many, many civilizations from the Ancient Greeks and Egyptians to the medieval Islamic world to the 19th century western Europeans.
Technically speaking, alchemy is not only possible, but is actually widely practiced. I’m not talking the lead into gold kind of alchemy, but nuclear physics uses alchemy all the time. It’s called nuclear transmutation and it uses nuclear reactions to change elements or isotopes from one thing to another either naturally or by way of fission or fusion. Yup, atomic bombs employ alchemy! So do nuclear power plants.
On a mostly unrelated note — though related if you consider things I didn’t know just because I’ve never given it any thought — the colour and name of the fourth planet from the sun are related.
Also, I have no idea how this blog suddenly became one long physics lecture. Especially since today’s post came by way of stumbling on the website I linked above with all the alchemy texts. I need to stop looking deeper into things.
*My mother will gladly tell you of the day it randomly dawned on me that a particular song I knew was talking about an event in history that I’d read a fictionalized account of a couple years earlier. An event, incidentally, which was the basis for all of my particular area of expertise. Yeah, I felt like an idiot when I finally put those two things together.