Women in STEM advent calendar: Day 22 – Mary the Prophetess

This winter, we are celebrating the festive season by honouring 25 amazing women in STEM, some of which you might not know of!

Mary the Prophetess

Between 1st and 3rd Centuries CE

Mary the Prophetess was an alchemist who invented the bain-Marie, (Mary’s bath), which is still in use in kitchens and labs today. She is considered the first historical Western alchemist. It is said that she perfected the art of distillation, and could prepare caput mortuum, a purple haematite iron oxide pigment. It’s thought that she founded an alchemy academy in Alexandria.

Mary is variously called Mary, Maria, or Miriam the Jewess, Prophetess or Hebrew, or Maria Prophetissima or Prophetissa.

For more on Mary the Prophetess:


Day 21 – Zelia Nuttall


Posted in Advent 2018.