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Witchcraft Studies



Astrology studied the effects of heavenly movements on earthly matters. Astrological doctrines were accepted as part of the intellectual framework for understanding the universe and its workings well into the 17th century. Astrology’s principles date back to the Babylonians, ancient Greece and Rome, and further extended by early medieval astrologers and their Arab counterparts of the Islamic Golden Age.

QB41 .A4            Abū Maʻshar, d. 886. Tractatus Albumasaris Florum Astrologie (1928)
Although Abu Ma'Shar, of the Abbasid court in Baghdad, took a late interest in astrology at age 47, he became the most important writer of the Islamic Golden Age on the topic. His Flores Albumasaris is a practical manual on the horoscope. The copy on display is a reprint of the Latin translation printed by the great Erhard Ratdolt of Augsburg in 1488.

QB26 .B6 1491 rare        Bonatti, Guido, 13th century. Decem Tractatus Astronomiae (1491)

In his time, Bonatti was the most celebrated astrologer in Europe, and for this sin, he is also punished in Dante's hell with the fortune tellers and diviners. Bonatti's Liber Astronomicus was an encyclopedic key source of astrology basics used for centuries. Printed by Erhard Ratdolt in 1491

QB16 .F5  rare          Firmicus Maternus, Julius. Astronomicon Libri VIII (1533)

Firmicus' Eight Books, commonly referred to as the Mathesis, is the most extensive surviving astrological text of the Roman empire. This massive handbook represents a synthesis of major Neoplatonist thought incorporating the teachings of Ptolemy, Hermes Trismegistus, and numerous Arab astrologers.

QD25 .B27 1717 rare        Basilius Valentinus. Chymische Schriften (1717)

Basilius Valentinus is the name attributed to an elusive 15th century alchemist whose identity remains unverified. He wrote dozens of treatises on alchemy in both Latin and German and developed a number of very fundamental chemical preparations. Our copy of his Chymische Schriften is unique because a missing portion of the original text - being a chart of alchemical symbols between pages 993-1056 - was written out by an 18th century hand and bound into the copy.