* 2006 (Kate Atkinson), One Good Turn (Black Swan(2007), ISBN 9780552772440), page 81:
*:Martin was pretty dull as names went but 'Alex' Blake' had a certain dash to it. His publishers hadn't considered Martin's own name to be 'punchy' enough. The pseudonym ' Alex Blake was chosen after much deliberation, most of which excluded Martin. 'A strong, no-nonsense sort of name', his editor said, 'to compensate'. For what, she didn't say.
, short form of Alexandra or the female name Alexis, or a spelling variant of Alix.
* 2008 , The Northern Clemency (Harpercollins, ISBN 9780007174799), page 588:
- 'I had a Christmas card from someone calling herself Alex the year before last,' Daniel said. 'I couldn't think who it was.'
- 'Oh, yes, she's changed again,' Alice said. 'I never got used to Alexandra, either. It never occurred to me that Sandra was short for Alexandra - anyway, she's Sandra on her birth certificate.'
(alchemy) A liquid which converts lead to gold.
* 2002 , Philip Ball, The Elements: A Very Short Introduction , Oxford 2004, p. 59:
A liquid which is believed to cure all ills and gives eternal life.
(pharmacy) A sweet flavored liquid (usually containing a small amount of alcohol) used in compounding medicines to be taken by mouth in order to mask an unpleasant taste.
- For Chinese alchemists, gold held the key to the Elixir , the Eastern equivalent of the Philosopher's Stone.
* elixir of life