I have read any number of references, both pre and post AD regarding the use of the name of Mary or a derivative, for women who were involved with mystical work or alchemical study. Does anyone have more clarification on this?
In their quest for legitimacy, Hellenistic and later alchemical authors claimed that alchemy was an art handed down from the major biblical figures. In the course of time it had become for them a basic tenet that alchemy was first revealed by God to Adam & Eve. Mary was considered the new Eve after the flood.