Fioravanti, Leonardi (d. 1588)
Italian alchemist, doctor, and surgeon of the sixteenth century.
Fioravanti was born in Bologna, studied medicine, and
practiced in Palermo from 1548 to 1550. He traveled to Africa
with the Spanish fleet, returning in 1555 and going on to
Rome, Venice, and Bologna, where he was appointed a doctor
and count. He published a number of books, the most well
known being Il compendio dei secreti di scienza rationali intorno alla
medicina, cirugia et alchimia (Summary of the Arcana of Medicine,
Surgery, and Alchemy). Published in Venice in 1564, it
was reprinted in many editions. This venture into alchemy included
an application of the principles and methods of hermetica
to medicine. Fioraranti’s account of the petra philosophorum
or philosophers’ stone claimed its designation to be purely arbitrary.
It was a mixture of mercury, potassium nitrate, and
other ingredients intended as a stomachic and had no connection
with the transmuting lapis of the alchemists, he said.