From Old French alkimie, arquemie (French alchimie), from Medieval Latin alkimia, from Arabic الكيمياء (al-kīmiyā’), ال (al, “the”) + from Ancient Greek χημεία (khēmeia) or χυμεία (chēmeia or chymeia) originally “a mingling, infusion, juice, liquid, especially as extracted from plants” and later “alchemy”, perhaps from Χημία (Chēmia, “black earth (ancient name for Egypt)”) and/or χυμός (chymos, “juice, sap”). (Compare Spanish alquimia and Italian alchimia).
- (uncountable) The ancient search for a universal panacea, and of the philosopher's stone, that eventually developed into chemistry.
- (countable) The causing of any sort of mysterious sudden transmutation.
- (computing, slang, countable) Any elaborate transformation process or algorithm.
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