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COMTE DE GABALIS, OU ENTRETIENS SUR LES SCIENCES SECRÈTES. RENOUVELLÉ & AUGMENTÉ D'UNE LETTRE SUR CE SUJET [bound with:] LA SUITE DU COMTE DE GABALIS, OU NOUVEAUX ENTRETIENS SUR LES SCIENCES SECRETES, TOUCHANT LA NOUVELLE PHILOSOPHIE. OUVRAGE POSTHUME
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COMTE DE GABALIS, OU ENTRETIENS SUR LES SCIENCES SECRÈTES. RENOUVELLÉ & AUGMENTÉ D'UNE LETTRE SUR CE SUJET [bound with:] LA SUITE DU COMTE DE GABALIS, OU NOUVEAUX ENTRETIENS SUR LES SCIENCES SECRETES, TOUCHANT LA NOUVELLE PHILOSOPHIE. OUVRAGE POSTHUME

By [Villars, Abbé de (Nicolas-Pierre-Henri de Montfaucon)]

Cologne: Pierre Marteau, 1691. Hardcover. Very good. [ca. 1691 and ca. 1703.] 16mo. Two volumes in one. 155;[2],150pp. In French. Later three-quarter calf and marbled boards, gilt spine rules, gilt leather label. First title page printed in red and black with armillary sphere device. Early inscriptions in flyleaf. Closely trimmed at fore-edge, touching some characters of text (with no loss). Joints expertly repaired, binding rubbed and moderately worn. Overall very good. Early edition of the best known work of Henri de Montfaucon, Abbé de Villars (1635-1673), for which he is said to have been murdered by the Rosicrucians. This edition adds the “Réponse à la lettre de Monseigneur” to the 1670 original text and is bound with a “posthumous” sequel published ca. 1703 by Pierre Mortier in Amsterdam. The primary work, a satirical dialogue between a Cabalist and a skeptic, is largely concerned with the Paracelsan idea of the marriage of elemental spirits to human beings. It ostensibly unveiled Rosicrucian secrets, which may have been what led to Villars’s assasination on the road to Lyon in 1673. Despite its satirical nature, the work has been treated as a source book for esoteric knowledge over the generations to the present day. F. Leigh Gardner describes it in that spirit in his BIBLIOTHECA ROSICRUCIANA: “The chief figure in it is said to be taken from G. F. Borri, who is the imaginary Count de Gabalis; although written in a satirical vein yet it contains profound truths; possibly the author found it necessary in those days to disseminate knowledge in this fashion. It is also stated that Pope in his work, ‘The Rape of the Lock,’ obtained his ideas of the Elementaires and the general outline from this work.” The second title, whose true author is unknown, further pursues the theme of the marriage between elementals and human beings with a character named Jean le Brun. Gardner describes it as a “Burlesque on the original work, and presumably only written to enable it to be sold on the reputation enjoyed by the re-issue of the original one.” A brief, but extremely important work in the history of occult literature, bound with a very rare edition of the “Suite,” for which OCLC records four copies. Main title: Caillet 7707 (noting editions printed with sphere and no date). Main title (other editions): Caillet 7701, Duveen,pp. 411-412, Gardner 556, Graesse, p. 59. Second title: Caillet 7709 (another edition), Gardner 562n.

$800.00

COLLEGIUM CURIOSUM PRIVATISSIMUM PHYSIOGNOM- CHIROMANT- METOPSCOP- ANTHROPOLOGICUM, JOH. PRAETORII, P. L. CAES. ODER EIN SEHR NÜTZLICHES WERCK, DARINNEN CURIEUS UND DOCH VOLLKÖMMLICH ABGEHANDELT WIRD, WAS ZUR PHYSIOGNOMIE, CHIROMANTIE, METOPOSCOPIE UND ANTHROPOLOGIE GEHÖRET
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COLLEGIUM CURIOSUM PRIVATISSIMUM PHYSIOGNOM- CHIROMANT- METOPSCOP- ANTHROPOLOGICUM, JOH. PRAETORII, P. L. CAES. ODER EIN SEHR NÜTZLICHES WERCK, DARINNEN CURIEUS UND DOCH VOLLKÖMMLICH ABGEHANDELT WIRD, WAS ZUR PHYSIOGNOMIE, CHIROMANTIE, METOPOSCOPIE UND ANTHROPOLOGIE GEHÖRET

By Praetorius, Johannes

Frankfurt and Leipzig: Philipp Wilhelm Stock, 1704. First Edition. Hardcover. Very good. [14],128 pp., including several in-text illustrations, plus ten plates (nine folding). In Latin. Modern marbled paper over boards. Moderate toning throughout, mild foxing in some plates, minor loss along upper fold of third plate with archival tape repair and residue of earlier tape repair, apparent loss of small outer panel of terminal plate. Very good. First edition of the posthumous German treatment of the Latin works of Johannes Praetorius on palmistry, metoposcopy, and other forms of physiognomic divination. Johannes Praetorius (i.e., Hans Schultze, 1630-1680) was a German poet, historian, and prolific compiler of curious legends and folklore. Faber du Faur, for whom Praetorius held a particular collecting interest, lists him in the "Oddities" section of GERMAN BAROQUE LITERATURE and refers to his "open eye and a sharp ear for all wonder stories, witch tales, and accounts of ghosts and sorcery current among the people. He indefatigably collected all information on remarkable subjects and happenings, and was fond of popular gossip, even of the uncouth type" (pp. 199-200). Faber du Faur 776 (1713 edition). OCLC lists seven copies, all in Europe.

$750.00