The Brotherhood of Alchemists is a secret society that dates back to the 16th century. The history, activities and identity of the members of the Brotherhood is shrouded in mystery, and the world only learnt of its existence in the 21st century. The Brotherhood of Alchemists brings together an elite group of businessmen, politicians, thinkers and scientists, as well as influential and well-known personalities from around the world. Despite hundreds of years in hiding, through their fortunes and outflows, and reportedly through the mysterious art of alchemy, members of the Brotherhood have influenced major events shaping modern history.
The existence of the Brotherhood of Alchemists was one of the most closely guarded secrets in the world. Everything we know about this secret organization comes from the account of a witness who was to become a member of the Brotherhood in 1974. During the preparations for the initiation ceremony, this person obtained information about the history and activities of the Brotherhood of Alchemists, which he then wrote down and passed notes to the media. Unfortunately, the would-be member of the Brotherhood disappeared in mysterious circumstances, and all information about his identity was irretrievably erased from any archives. No publication about the Brotherhood has ever appeared in the media, and journalists asked about the matter have refused to comment with dismay.
In 2020, during a renovation in one of the editorial offices, notes were found hidden under the floorboards, on the basis of which it was possible to confirm the existence of the Brotherhood and gain the only information about its functioning so far.
According to the notes found, the Brotherhood of Alchemists was established in the 16th century on Polish soil. The identity of the founders of the Brotherhood is one of the most closely guarded secrets, but some clues point to close links of the founders of the Brotherhood with Jan Twardowski and Sigismund II Augustus, and later with Michał Sędziwój and Sigismund III Vasa. The Brotherhood of Alchemists quickly developed its network of influence, becoming an international social movement with members of different nationalities and religions. In keeping with the spirit of the ancient art of alchemy, the members of the Brotherhood believed that by striving for self-improvement, combining knowledge from many fields, they would discover and explain the intricacies of nature through research.
The found notes also included information on the conditions and method of joining the ranks of the Brotherhood of Alchemists. To become a member of the Brotherhood, one must receive a recommendation from at least three current members, and one must pass a series of tests. Officially, one becomes a member of the Brotherhood of Alchemists during an initiation ceremony, the place and time of which have never been revealed to anyone outside the circle of trusted members of the Brotherhood. Each associate receives a special signet ring which is a symbol of their membership in the brotherhood. It is by this signet that the individual members get to know each other during business and social meetings, knowing that they are obliged to give each other the necessary support in their undertakings.
Interestingly, the most closely guarded secret of the Brotherhood of Alchemists is the recipe for perfect, mild vodka, which was developed by the founders of the Brotherhood and has been passed down for successive generations of Brotherhood members ever since. Secret distillation techniques using specific ingredients have never been written down; to avoid disclosing them, they are passed down orally between successive Masters of the Brotherhood.