Empedocles of Acragas
|This quartet of elementary substances, in their turn
mixed together in various proportions to generate perceptible substances.
Expressed in rectangular diagrammatic form, each adjacent element can be
seen to possess a common quality; hence all forms of the elements are, in
principle, interconvertible. Thus by changing the form or forms (transmutations)
of bodies, Nature transmutes the underlying basic, or primary matter
into different substances.