THE IMPORTANCE OF ALCHEMY AS A THEME: AN ANALYSIS OF “THE ALCHEMIST” BY BEN JOHNSON
Keywords:The Alchemist, Ben Johnson, theme of alchemy, avarice and lust, etc.
Although the real theme of the Alchemist may be described as avarice and lust, alchemy figures so largely and prominently in the play that it deserves the first and foremost consideration. The very title shows the importance of alchemy in the scheme of the play. Considerable space has been devoted by the author in this play to a discussion of the theory of alchemy and the vast potentialities of this pseudo-science. The objective of this paper is to analyze how the actions and the characters of the play portray alchemy as the main theme of the play. Various characters and their actions are analyzed to conclude that “The Alchemist” is a play with a wide scope and It would be unfair to limit its theme to avarice and lust. Alchemy as one of the themes cannot just be set aside on the plea that it is incidental.