This is a very unusual horary question, something that just doesn't happen anymore in our days. The querent, an alchemist, asked about his chances to obtain the Philosopher's Stone. In alchemy, the Philosopher's Stone is a mythical substance that supposedly could turn inexpensive metals into gold and/or create an elixir that would make humans immortal.
If it's inexpensive gold you are looking for, there are various options besides seeking the wisdom of the Philosopher's Stone. The Philosopher's Stone is more of a metaphor, representing wisdom, knowledge or the divine, rather than being a physical object. Likewise, turning base metals into gold does not refer to a substance you can buy on www.bullionvault.com, but the precious nature of gnostic truth, burnished by experience and purified by long hours of study.
The alchemists' dream is to attain knowledge of the mysterious Philosopher's Stone, or "that Elixir by which such wonders are performed". The Stone is "a blessing beyond all blessings upon earth... given to but very few, and to those few rather by revelation of the good angels of God than the proper industry of man".
Interesting, isn't it ? Now, that's a horary question of real importance!
Below is the original chart, set in Old Style format - May 27, 1647 JC, 10:37 am LMT, London (00w10, 51n30)
And this is the modern chart set for June 6, 1647 GC, 10:38 am GMT, London (00w10, 51n30)
First, Lilly's words on this horary chart.
Next, my comments on this chart.
The chart describes extremely well the situation. The querent is represented by the 1st house, whose cusp (the Ascendant) is in VIRGO, the zodiacal sign of chemistry and pharmaceuticals. By extension, this sign represents the alchemist as well.
The alchemy, as a divine science of the universe, is represented by the 9th house. The querent hopes to reach the perfection in this art, obtaining the final alchemical target, the Philosopher's Stone, which transforms any common metal into gold. This final target is shown in the turned 4th house (end of things) from the 9th (alchemy), which is the radix 12 house whose cusp is in Leo, ruled by the Sun = gold.
So, the entire process is this: the querent (1st house, Mercury) studies alchemy (9th house, Mars) in order to obtain the Philosopher's Stone (12th house, the Sun).
First of all, Mercury has no essential dignities where it stands, it is therefore peregrine, a very debilitating position that indicates the person to be weak, powerless. And so is the Moon, the co-ruler.
Although Mercury is at 25 degrees and Mars is at 26 degrees, there isn't actually an applying aspect (square) between the two planets because Mercury is moving very slowly, just recovering after a retrograde period. It catches up speed however and then approaches the perfection of the square aspect with Mars, but before that happens, Mars passes to Virgo and the aspect can't be perfect in the planets' current signs, indicating that the querent won't be able to advance on his path. There are other things in this chart that show the the querent just passed through a very difficult period (Mercury recovers from retrogradation, Mercury separates from a conjunction with Saturn).
William Lilly advised the querent to abandon his quest. We see Mercury on the edge of leaving the 9th house (the alchemy study and practice), indicating that the querent was about to give up alchemy any way. Even more, Mercury is separating from Saturn, ruler of the 5th house (of action), showing him unwilling to take action.
Moon's position in this chart is also very interesting. She, as the co-ruler of the querent, is located in the 11th house of hopes and wishes, at the very beginning of Leo at 00º00', indicating that the querent is actually just at the beginning of his quest and has made no important steps so far towards the obtaining of the Philosopher's Stone. The Moon's semisquare with the Sun is not encouraging either.
Below is a symbolic representation of the Philosopher's Stone. The dragon of Nature straddles the globe of the Earth. Its twin, intertwined heads represent the perfect balancing and harmonisation of the alchemical principles sulphur and mercury, represented by the Sun and Moon. From Elias Ashmole's Theatrum Chemicum Brittanicum (1652). (Image from Skyscript.co.uk).
In the horary chart, this image is reflected in the Sabian Symbol for the 9th house cusp (by antiscia): Virgo 10 - "Two Heads Looking Out and Beyond the Shadows".