Why Is It Sweet?

Because the four Elements in it are pure, and separated from all

sulphurous stink and blackness, which Saturn received in the Mine; it

is almost Medicinal, and like unto Nature: And because it is so pure, it

affords some of its internal virtue outwardly, as that of Sweetness; but

the heat is so covered with the cold, that it cannot put forth its power

externally by reason of the cold which is external (the heat of Saturn

> lies internal, even as in Salt-Nitre) as doth the Taste, the Spirit of

Tasting is the most subtile in all things, as is taught more at large in

the Book of Vegetables, how the Air doth dilate it self from all Herbs

and Flowers externally; for the Spirit of the Air lies in the inward

part of all things; for God created nothing in this world but it hath

its peculiar Taste or Air, the Air and the Taste are one Spirit, the

Taste goes out of the Air, as Smoke from the Fire.

But how comes it to pass, that a thing which hath a sweet Air, is bitter

in Taste? The cause is, because the Faeces of that thing are putrid and

stinking in the Elements, that is the Choler or Heat; for whatsoever is

unnaturally hot, hath a bitter Taste; the Air and the Taste are both one

Spirit, and as the Spirit of the Air presses outwards through a hot

thing, so doth the Air embrace the Taste about, and descends the subtile

Taste, that it should not be burnt by the vehement burning Choler, as

in the Herbal is at large express'd.

But the cause why Saturn is sweet in Taste is, that it is almost pure

and clean, having scarce any unnatural heat in it, which can burn the

subtile Tast, therefore it hath the Taste externally, and the Taste hath

the Spirit of the Air lock'd up in it.

My Child, know what I said before, that a thing wherein is much burning

heat, the Air locks up the Taste therein, because the Taste shall not be

corrupted by the unnatural heat. So the Taste includes the Air in it,

when it issues forth from a thing which is externally cold; for the

subtil Spirits of the Air or Sent of a thing can endure no Cold, as we

see daily in Herbs and Flowers that they yield no Sent in the Winter, as

they do in the Summer; but they hide themselves in the Winter, and the

Spirit hath the Sent inclosed in it, and the Spirit of Sent or Air.

Behold a man that hath taken Cold, immediately he loses his Sent, and

his Tasting is diminished. Even so it is here with Saturn; it is quite

cold, so that the Taste manifests it self with the Spirit of Sent; for

the Spirit of the Taste hath the Smell in it. Look upon Sugar which is

well clarified from its Faeces, how sweet it is in Taste, yet it yields

no Sent, yet there is an extraordinary sweetness in Sugar. What is the

reason of this? Sugar is very cold externally, therefore is it white as

Snow, and of a sweet Taste; yet Sugar internally is hot and moist, of

the temper of Gold, and of such great virtue that it is called the

Philosophers Stone, as it is approved, and very prevalent to cure all

the Distempers of mans Body, as appears by its operation. The reason why

I say this, my Child, is, that you should altogether understand its

internal & external, and the Spirits which are in these things, whereof

we discourse; that thereby you should know Gods wonderful works, and

what wonders he works in these inferiour things, which are all made for

our use.