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Commentary: Italics
An ingot of one ounce of 9999 gold was dissolved in aqua regia and washed with distilled
water to near neutral until specks of metallic gold appeared.
Aqua Regia, a mixture of Hydrochloric and Nitric reduces metallic gold to salts of gold,
chiefly gold chloride. When the salts lose their acidity and become neutral or alkaline,
the salts tend to convert into metallic gold again.
During the washing also a brown precipitate appeared in the solution which was filtered
out, dried and stored for later possible use and labelled: Gold Body 1.
Salts of gold are always of a complex constitution in comparison to most other metallic
salts. Seeing "four nines" gold was used the brown powder could not be an impurity. No
analysis was carried out, but as this powder is insoluble in water, it could very well be
auric hydroxide or auric sulfide.
The resulting salts of gold were of a deep purple colour and were thoroughly dried as
they were found to be very hygroscopic.
Gold chloride is not only water soluble, it attracts moisture very quickly (hydroscopic)
and becomes a liquid. It also becomes a liquid when overheated. once the solution is
near neutral, the water evaporated off and the salts broken up into small granules, I
found a small erlenmeyer flask on a very mild heat most suitable to get the salt
thoroughly dry.
Philosopher's Mercury was put over some of the gold chloride, causing a violent hissing
as well as heat which caused the contents to boil. The vapours smelled strongly of Aqua
Quoting from 'Alchemy Rediscovered and Restored' by A. Cockren, page 125: 'When the
Mercurial Water is added to these salts of gold, there is a slight hissing, an increase in
heat, and the gold becomes a deep red liquid. The degree of hissing depends on how little
Mercury is slowly added. If too much Mercury is added the salt is 'drowned' and no
hissing occurs.
The liquid immediately became deep red and a sediment formed which, when cold, was
filtered out through a No. 5 filter paper. Then more of our Mercury was poured over the
sediment until no more colour came out. The dried sediment, light brown in colour, was
put with Gold Body 1.
This light brown powder behaves the same as the precipitate obtained during the
washing of the salt. It does not dissolve in water nor in alcohol, tests neutral and during
calcination quickly changes to carbon, ignites and burns up.
This deep red filtrate, now called 'EXTRACT NO. 1' was distilled to recover the solvent,
which was used again over more of the gold chloride and this process was repeated until

all gold chloride had been used for which one ounce of Philosopher's Mercury was
Our solvent, being very volatile, should be handled with great care unless one can afford
considerable loss during operations. Filtration was done in a well closed jar just big
enough to contain the funnel and filtrate bottle. For distillation a retort was used and the
receiving flask was preheated before joining and then cooled. This works well if a very
low heat is used. Joints were taped with plastic adhesive tape for extra safety.
This EXTRACT No. 1 should not be called potable gold. other than perhaps in highly
triturated homeopathic preparations it is not at all safe to take as it still contains gold
chloride in liquid form and Aqua Regia which remained in the gold chloride.
Cockren states that the oil of gold is obtained by addition of the mercurial water to the
salts of gold. This is true, but the oil is still in a poisonous mixture of acid and liquid salt.
Later on Cockren clearly points out that the oil of gold, a deep amber liquid of an oily
consistency, is obtained from this deep red liquid by means of distillation. He goes on to
say that this oil IS the potable gold of the alchemists.
While distilling off Mercury from Extract No. 1, it was noticed that first the Mercury
came over and then a soft yellow liquid which was received in a separate receiving flask.
This soft yellow liquid, after standing for a few hours, changed to orange, then to red and
by the next day had become a very deep dark red, now called EXTRACT No 2.
This yellow liquid tests very acid, yet it also contains Mercury, which acts more slowly on
liquid salts of gold when in an acid solution.
To diminish confusion further notes on EXTRACT No. 2 have been omitted, but it could
be briefly mentioned that it was gently washed with distilled water several times and then
once with alcohol. The extract was then rectified (alcohol evaporated off, fresh alcohol
poured over it and filtered) and put together with the final extract.
After the Mercury and soft yellow liquid had been distilled of EXTRACT No 1, there
remained in the distillation flask a thick black liquid and a film of metallic gold had lined
the bottom.
The metallic gold lining resulted from the liquid gold chloride from which its acidity had
been removed during distillation, which converted the salt into metal before the Mercury
had caused its separation.
Absolute alcohol was poured onto this black liquid resulting in a deep red liquid, which
was filtered and now called EXTRACT No 3.
More alcohol was poured over the sediment in the filter paper until no more colour was
extracted. The sediment was then gently dried and put with 'Gold Body 1'.
The gold pellicles easily lifted from the bottom of the retort and were put away for re-use.
This EXTRACT No. 3, when sufficiently concentrated, has an oily consistency but is very
acidic, which can easily be detected by smell.
From EXTRACT No 3 alcohol was distilled off until the distillate started to show a faint
yellow colour.
Rota-vap apparatus was used, but is not a must as long as very low heat is used.
The alcohol tested very acid and was discarded.

The black viscous residue in the distillation flask was washed with distilled water several
times until the washings tested neutral.
If distillation is continued wider high vacuum a clear oil can be obtained from it.
All washings were evaporated and the remains were rectified with alcohol several times.
The black viscous residue was dissolved in absolute alcohol, producing a very strong
deep red liquid, which was filtered through a No 5 filter paper. The sediment was treated
the same as before.
The rectified remains of the washings were added to this liquid. All liquid was rectified
with alcohol twice more (until its VAPOUR tested neutral) now called POTABLE
Litmus paper cannot be used on an oily liquid.
Potable gold, thus prepared and rectified can be reduced to an oil as follows:
Let the alcohol evaporate off with a very gentle heat until no more alcohol can be
Dissolve residue with philosopher's mercury and circulate for a philosophical month or
Distill off philosopher's mercury until the liquid is of mild oil consistency.
Pour distilled water onto this liquid. This will cause the oil to separate as a deep amber
liquid, which can be made to cling to the sides through gently rolling and rotating the
Pour out the water in an evaporating dish. If it has a tinge of yellow or faint red, it will
also test acid, which means that either your potable gold or philosopher's mercury has not
sufficiently been rectified or purified.
Weigh your bottle before and after removal of the oil. I think, the oil is the best and most
reliable as a basis for trituration (dilution into potencies).
The oil is easily removed through dissolving it with alcohol.
Oil of gold can also be obtained as follows:
Dissolve salts of gold with enough philosopher's mercury and let it stand, well stoppered,
for a couple of months.
This allows the mercury the time to act on all the salt and no metallic gold will form.
The amber oil will have separated, but will be found together with a red liquid which is
very acidic.
Make the oil stick to the sides of the flask and decant the red liquid or pour the whole
contents in an evaporating dish, let the oil cling to the sides and decant the red liquid.
Wash the oil with distilled water till neutral and rectify with alcohol at least twice.
Considering the oil as a solid extract, 1 gram of the oil would make 10ml of fluid extract,
which would make 100m1 of tincture, one litre of lx, 10 litres of 2x, etc.
What potency to use, how much and how often, comes down to 'trial and error' as this
would differ from person to person, depending on sensitivity and pathological conditions.
As far as I know, no clinical evaluation has ever been documented apart from my own
personal attempts in this direction.
To my own satisfaction the oil of gold has been proved to be non-toxic, but so is a herbal

laxative, meaning to say that too much of it can be taken with unpleasant results.
Experience will teach you it to be wise to start with nothing stronger than the tincture and
no more than 5 drops a day. Sensitive people should start with a lx or higher potency.
Every day keep checking how you feel without allowing your emotions or imagination to
take over.
From weak potencies it is unlikely that you get noticeable reactions from day to day.
Strong doses of the tincture can result in headaches, increase in temperature, feeling too
warm especially at night plus perspiration, tiredness, depression, lower back and neck
pains, general aching of joints, kidney and bladder pains, darker urine, loss of appetite
and nausea.
According to Naturopathic philosophy these symptoms indicate an increased effort of the
body towards cleansing. Therefore, my advice as a naturopath is to take it easy!
Potable gold as well as the oil of gold are no overnight miracle cures and they are no pain
killers either. Throughout the ages gold has been considered the perfect materialization of
the sun and as such the qualities, benefits and virtues of the essence of gold (oil of gold)
are assumed to be the same as or comparable with those of the sun, e.g. energizing or
revitalizing, warming and expanding. Therefore, as a result the body would be more
capable to look after itself, to start cleansing, renovating and rebuilding, slowly but
- Arthur G Fehres.