DescriptionEmanuel Swedenborg. De Telluribus In Mundo Nostri Solari, Quae Vocantur Planetae: et de Telluribus In Coelo Astrifero. London: [John Lewis,] 1758. Krown & Spellman retail: $1000. First Edition. 4to. A - I (4). , 3-72pp. Modern leather, spine banded, title gilt on red leather, minor foxing, very nice copy. Head-piece. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
A first edition of this rare work on the plurality of worlds, in which Swedenborg (1688-1722) describes in detail the planets in the universe and their inhabitants, based on his visionary experiences,. He states that the human race came not from Earth alone, but from countless planets. Until near to the end of his life, Swedenborg published his mystical works anonymously and abroad, as censorship prevented printing them in Sweden. In fact, his books were imported into Sweden only with great difficulty. This work was printed by John Lewis of Paternoster Row, in an edition of no more than 1,000. Swedenborg generally sold his books for less than the cost of printing. Emmanuel Swedenborg led one of the most remarkable careers in the history of science and philosophy. He mastered natural science and mathematics in his youth, writing some 150 works on scientific subjects. He rigorously sought a comprehensive physical explanation of the world based on mathematical and mechanical principles. Gradually his inquiries turned toward philosophical matters and after a profound mystical experience in 1745 he devoted his reasoning almost entirely to the interpretation of religion.In these later treatises, Swedenborg gives vivid descriptions of his experiences in the spiritual worlds beyond space and time which he was able to enter by consciously suspending bodily sensations. Despite its bizarre aspects, his theosophical system is characterized by logic and is obviously rooted in his previous concern with the sciences. Swedenborg attempted to explain reality in terms of psychic energy, in which matter, intellect, and spirit emanate from the world soul. ESTC T90963. Hyde 956. Graesse VI,I; 533. Lowndes 2553. Caillet 10482.Honeyman 2948.
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