alchemical metals

Medieval European alchemists attempted, among other aims, tried to transform base metals such as lead or copper into silver or gold and to discover a cure for disease and a way of extending life. The metals of Arabic, European and Chinese alchemy included iron, gold, lead, tin, mercury, copper, and silver. Indian alchemists worked with six metals: gold, silver, tin, iron, lead, and copper. Although "the secrets of mercurial lore" became part of the Tantric rite, mercury seems to have been much less important in India than in China or Europe.