philosophers' stone

or philosopher's stone


noun Alchemy.

a substance sought by alchemists that would be capable of transmuting baser metals into gold or silver and of prolonging life.

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Origin of philosophers' stone

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for philosophers' stone

philosopher's stone

noun

a stone or substance thought by alchemists to be capable of transmuting base metals into gold
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for philosophers' stone

philosopher's stone

The stone or material that practitioners of alchemy believed capable of changing other metals into gold.

notes for philosopher's stone

Figuratively, the “philosopher's stone” is a substance thought to be capable of regenerating man spiritually.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.