Elixir of Long Life recipe

Archaeologists recreate Elixir of Long Life recipe from unearthed bottle

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Beneath a construction site for a glassy, 22-story hotel in New York, archaeologists unearthed a history of drinking, eating and lodging, along with a tradition of consuming cure-alls and potions for good health, according to a report in DNA Info . The discovery included a two hundred-year-old glass bottle that once contained the “Elixir of Long Life”.  Now the research team have tracked down the original German recipe used to create the elixir for fending off death.

“We decided to engage in our own brand of experimental archaeology,” said Alyssa Loorya, the president of Chrysalis, a company regularly hired by the city to oversee excavation projects. Loorya enlisted researchers in Germany to track down the recipe in an old medical guide, which revealed that the potion contained ingredients such as aloe, which is anti-inflammatory, gentian root, which aids digestion, as well as rhubarb, zedoary, and Spanish saffron – ingredients still used by herbalists today.

The raw ingredients for an ‘Elixir of Long Life’

The raw ingredients for an ‘Elixir of Long Life’. Photo credit: DNAinfo/Irene Plagianos

In addition to the Elixir of Long Life, archaeologists also discovered two bottles of Dr Hostetters Stomach Bitters, a once-popular 19 th century medicine, which contained a complex mixture of ingredients including Peruvian bark, which has malaria-fighting properties, and gum kino, a kind of tree sap that is antibacterial. Loorya and her team are have recreated both types of elixir, which they say taste very bitter. 

The search for the Elixir of Life has been the supreme quest for many.  In medieval times, there are accounts of the alchemists looking for the philosopher’s stone, believed to be required to create the elixir but also to convert lead to gold. Bernard Trevisan, an alchemist of the 15th century said that dropping the philosopher’s stone into mercurial water would create the elixir, and we have multiple cases of alchemists who claim to have found the Elixir of Life, including the infamous Cagliostro or Saint Germain.

Images depicting the Elixir of Long Life

Images depicting the Elixir of Long Life

Ancient references to immortality, or extremely long life spans, can be traced back thousands of years. The 4,000-year-old Sumerian King’s List , for example, refer to rulers who reigned for tens of thousands of years. Even the Bible refers to individuals who lived for hundreds of years, prior to the ‘Great Flood’.

Ancient myths and legends from numerous cultures around the world refer to special food or drink that were reserved for the ‘gods’ and kept them immortal. For the Greek gods it was ambrosia and nectar, in Zoroastrian and Vedic mythologies, we can see reference to a special drink known as Soma and Haoma respectively. In Egyptian mythology, Thoth and Hermes drank ‘white drops’ and ‘liquid gold’, which were said to keep them immortal. In Sumerian texts, we have references to the Ninhursag’s milk, which was drunk by the kings of ancient Sumer. In the Hindu religion, the gods would harness a milk called Amrita, a nectar that was collected and drunk by the gods to give them immortality, but forbidden for humans to drink. In Chinese mythology, we have the ‘peaches of immortality’. Are all these references simply the imagination of our ancient ancestors? Or were their cultures that really achieved significant longevity? Perhaps there is at least some truth behind the Elixir of Long Life…

By April Holloway


ancient-origins's picture

Thank you Jeff for your comment. We will look into Fulcanelli. Very interesting!

The thing about Fulcanelli's book is that it provokes more questions than it provides answers.
I found greater insight into this subject through the study of Ayurveda and from the unwritten oral history of various Sadhus and gurus that I met that shared things with me on my travels.
Ayurveda, means the science of life. Ayur means science and Veda means life and in it bitter herbs feature very strongly.

That book about Fulcanelli is one of the most fascinating books I have ever read about mysterious subjects.

I agree the book doesn't answer all the questions about alchemy.

If the legends are true alchemy is a secret art that is revealed to only a very few people.+

There's some corroboration for alchemy in another great book which is 'Initiation' by Elisabeth Haich.

Elisabeth's book is an account of a past life she experienced in ancient Egypt.

She said alchemy was one of the subjects the initiates learned about.

Elisabeth mentioned something called the universal solvent.

I guess this is some sort of substance that can disintegrate any other form of matter.

Fringe author Joseph Farrell says some interesting things about alchemy also.

However with Farrell you have to sift through some of his other far out ideas.

I have enjoyed his books though.

[Paperback – July 28, 2000]
by Elisabeth Haich (Author)

The Philosopher's Stone: Alchemy and the Secret Research for Exotic Matter
[Paperback – April 1, 2009]
by Joseph P. Farrell (Author)

I found the following book fascinating.

This Fulcanelli guy may have really known the secret of staying alive forever.

Edgar Cayce stated that during his past life as the Atlantean priest Ra Ta he somehow 'threw off the years of toil and strife' and made himself young again.

I think it took Ra 7 years to complete this transformation.

That would be in the book "Edgar Cayce's Egypt".

In her book 'Initiation' Elisabeth Haich also mentions alchemy.

Elisabeth said she had studied about alchemy during her past life experience in Egypt.

Then in her modern life she knew a guy in India that knew how to create some sort of pills that would keep people young and healthy.

This guy claimed he tried to show Western doctors how to make these pills but in order to do it they had to abstain from sexual activity so nobody wanted to do it.

Fulcanelli: Master Alchemist: Le Mystere des Cathedrales, Esoteric Intrepretation of the Hermetic Symbols of The Great Work
[Paperback – January 15, 1984]
by Fulcanelli (Author), Mary Sworder (Translator)

You mention, Fulcanelli: Master Alchemist: Le Mystere des Cathedrales, Esoteric Intrepretation of the Hermetic Symbols of The Great Work.
There are some still in possession of the old knowledge and practicing it in the modern day, of this I am more than sure.


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