The night after she met Signor Villani, Emilia’s mind was unsettled, filled with thoughts of his countryside villa in Fiesole. He was only a prospective patron who thought too much of himself, but painting at his villa would be the opportunity of a lifetime.
She fell asleep reading about Hermes...He was motioning her towards him, deeper into her dream.
From Nonna's Book of Mysteries
You can learn more about Hermes, the Greek god, and his relationship to alchemy below. You can also print out a copy of an iron-on Hermes transfer.
To make your own Hermes tee or other clothing item, you need: the Hermes image, a piece of iron-on transfer paper (available at computer stores or online at CompUSA), and a tee (or cloth bag or other clothing item).
- In Greek mythology Hermes is the god of travelers, merchants, and thieves. He is also the guide of souls on their journeys to the underworld. He is the trickster wearing a brimmed hat with wings and carrying a caduceus (staff with serpents coiled around it).
- The Roman name for Hermes is Mercury. In alchemy Mercury—or Mercurius in Latin—is a common ingredient in the recipe for making gold. Mercury is a metallic substance which is also liquid, and it will adhere only to precious metals.
- In the secret language of the alchemists, Hermes represents the union of opposites—of body and spirit—and for this reason he is sometimes depicted as half male and half female. Alchemists call this union the sacred marriage, or coniunctio.
- In old alchemical drawings the coniunctio is also shown as the union of Sol and Luna, or the Sun King and the Moon Queen. This marriage is said to result in the birth of the perfected self or the true alchemical gold.
- When you feel change is imminent in your life, then Hermes—or Mercurius— is at play, guiding you along on your magical journey. Surely, you have surely entered the albedo—the second or white phase of the experiment. You are no longer in nigredo, the first or black phase. Daylight is no longer so far away!