Agrippa's Superb Work on Magic and the Kabbalah

    Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim. La Philosophie Occulte de Henr. Corn. Agrippa, conseiller et histiographe de l'Empereur Charles V, divisee en trois livres, et traduite du Latin. La Haye: Alberts, Rutgert Christoffel's-Gravenhage, 1727. The rare first French edition. Two octavo volumes. *8, **2, A-Cc8, Dd6, A-V8. (22), 427; (2), 317 pages. Eleven full page plates and numerous other illustrations. Contemporary full calf, spines stamped in gilt, brown gilt morocco lettering labels. Front pastedowns with ink stamps, title-pages with old owner's signature - "3 Mar, 1907. Propriete du Druids. Dwyfawl Awen". Emblematic stamps (from previous owner) to P6, P7 of volume II and on a table plate in volume II. Emblems appear to be in old Welsh-Celtic language. Tape repair outer margin of X7 of volume II, no text effect. Volume I with some underlining in pencil. Page 235 of volume I with old owner's signature and date "Louis Henry Escot, 25 Oct, 1860. Notre Dame, Saint Hubert". Overall, a very good set. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
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    Agrippa (1486-1535) is the most important occultists of his age. A man of remarkable erudition he corresponded with the great minds of his day such as Erasmus and Melancthon. He was a Neo-Platonist who wanted to "conciliate various magical doctrines and to unite philosophy with Cabala." Seligmann.

    "Though written earlier, Agrippa hesitated to publish this work out of fear of condemnation and as it put on the Index and condemned, he wasn't too overly cautious. "The three books are given over, respectively, to natural, celestial, and ceremonial (or religious) magic," Shumaker, The Occult Sciences in the Renaissance, 1972, p135, see his careful review of contents of this book, pp134-159. Thorndike, though he criticizes Agrippa for what he failed to accomplish, states that it "...gave a more general presentation of the subject than could be found elsewhere, at least in print. Partly on this account, partly because of its daring enunciation of certain suspect doctrines such as that of a world soul, partly because of advertising which it received by being placed on various lists of prohibited books and Indexes, it found a number of editions and readers during the next two centuries," Magic & Experimental Science V,136. "It's not only the best treatise of Kabbalah that exists, but also treated the most practical high magic" Caillet.

    STCN: 172708. Thorndike V.136. Caillet 1:95 (rare). Coumont: A15.42. Graesse 1:45. Kernot 1555. Brunet 1:115. Guaita 3-1104 (rare). Esoterica 29. Ouvaroff 1696.

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