Description

    On Natural Magic, Interpretation of Dreams, and Astrology

    Benito Pereria [Pererya, Pererius]. De Magia, De Observatione Somniorum, Et De Divinatione Astrologica, Ibri Tres. Adversus Fallaces, Et Superstitiosas Artes. Cologne: Joannem Gymnicum, 1598. Third (first Cologne) edition. Octavo. A-P8, Q4. (5), 236, (5) pages. Woodcut printer's device on title and Jesuit woodcut vignette on verso, head-pieces, tail-pieces, decorated initials. Modern marbled paper boards. Small library stamp on verso of title page, scattered foxing, some underlining and few old notes in ink, otherwise, nice copy. Cantamessa II: 3405, Gardner: 1252, Neville II: 291, VD16: P1363, Coumont: P22.4, Caillet 9518, Thorndike VI: 410. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
    Please visit HA.com/6117 for an extended description of this lot.


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    Benito Pereria [Pererya, Pererius]. De Magia, De Observatione Somniorum, Et De Divinatione Astrologica, Ibri Tres. Adversus Fallaces, Et Superstitiosas Artes. Cologne: Joannem Gymnicum, 1598.

    Third (first Cologne) edition. Octavo. A-P8, Q4. (5), 236, (5) pages. Woodcut printer's device on title and Jesuit woodcut vignette on verso, head-pieces, tail-pieces, decorated initials. Modern marbled paper boards. Small library stamp on verso of title page, scattered foxing, some underlining and few old notes in ink, otherwise, nice copy.                                           

    "Although the wording of the title is different, this is a reprint of the first edition of Adversus fallaces et superstitosas artes (Ingolstadt, 1591)....Pereyra, or Pereira, a Jesuit of Valencia, produced two books on magic and science, which were well esteemed...the author's second book (as here) is in three books, on magic, observance of dreams, and divination by astrology...One of the longest chapters is on alchemy, with references to the works of Avicenna, Averroes, Cardan, Lacinio, et al. Pereyra claims that there's no decisive argument against transmutation but states that the process is extremely difficult, which leads many alchemists into deceitful practices." - Neville II: 292.

    "Pererius admits the existence of natural magic, which is the noblest part of physical science, medicine and mathematics. Men skilled in knowledge of nature can work great wonders by it. But wicked or ignorant men learn even natural magic only from demons. 'For scarcely any mortal or certainly very few indeed, and those men of the keenest genius who have employed diligent observation for a long time, can attain to such natural magic.' On the other hand, Pererius rejects the attempt of Peter of Abano, Cardan, and Pomponazzi in his book De incantationibus to reduce all works of magic to natural causes and to exclude any influences of demons. While Pererius admits the validity of natural magic, he denies any validity to either astronomical magic which employs astronomical images or to cabalistical magic. He also denies that souls of the dead can really be raised by necromancy....on dreams Pererius holds that many are vain and idle, but many also true. Otherwise the most famous medical men would not observe the dreams of their patients so subtly and curiously. Nor would physiologists labor at determining their causes, force and significations. And history and Holy Scripture would be mendacious, which have given so many instances of dreams fulfilled. Similarly it is licit for a Christian to observe certain dreams but not others...his third book seems more uncompromisingly hostile to astrology than the second was to the interpretation of dreams. Noting that many readers are deterred by the prolixity of Pico della Mirandola's disputations against astrology, Pererius aims to state the case, more briefly. He argues that the art is contrary to the Christian religion, that astrologers do not understand the heavens, that their rules are unreasonable, that the stars are neither signs nor causes of future events, and that the realization of certain predictions is to be assigned rather to demon aid, human shrewdness and other causes." - Thorndike VI: 410-412.  

    Cantamessa II: 3405, Gardner: 1252, Neville II: 291, VD16: P1363, Coumont: P22.4, Caillet 9518, Thorndike VI: 410.



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    Auction Dates
    April, 2015
    8th-9th Wednesday-Thursday
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