Ask the Alchemist #124


What do the symbols mean on you winnower logos? Where did you find them? Is Aether with a long A or E or something else?

I have been waiting for this question for years. Thank you. First off, the logo.

aether.jpg To begin, I didn’t find the central figure. It is a composite of traditional alchemical symbols. Chocolate ALCHEMY after all. But some of the individual symbols and the logo I did design.

The top figure (the H like figure) is the alchemical symbol for Pulverize. It is as close to “Crack” (as in cracking the cocoa bean) as I could get.

Proceeding sinister (counter clockwise around the circle -since we are breaking something down) we encounter one the four Elements, Air. The means by which the process in question is acted upon.

And completing the circle we have the symbol for Separation.

Pulverize, Air, Separate. In other words, cracking and winnowing.

After that it was just a matter of arranging the symbols into a new composite Symbol. Cracking and Winnowing.

In regards to the Sylph, you will see one more symbol in there. Mu. In the world of chemistry and measurements, it stands for “micro”, as in micrometer. Small. And so the Sylph is the ‘smaller’ winnower. Maybe one day there will be a nano or pico winnower.

Finally, the “A” is silent. It is Ether with a long E. No long A.

And why the name? Two reasons. The triangle in the symbol that makes up Air is also the symbol for the Ether – the mystical fifth Element that permeates the universe (we are talking symbolism here, I don’t believe this). Aether is an alternative spelling that lends an old world feel in my opinion. Seems a good way to start the mystical transformation of cocoa to chocolate!

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