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March 2002

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Subject: ACADEMY : John Dee film
From: Michal Pober
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 2002

Dear Friends,

On Tuesday 5th March a new film about JOHN DEE will be shown
by the BBC on Channel 4. It was made by Diverse Films, directed
by Neil Rawles and produced by Marcus Sulley who have also
made a film about Alistair Crowley and are currently completing a
film about Casanova.

This film wasshot last year, partly in the Czech Lands with on-site
locations in some of the most interesting and attractive places
associated with Dee and Kelley - including Trebon, Cesky
Krumlov and Krivoklat, places which are also included in the
Magical Journeys in Bohemia which I also organise. I had the
pleasure of 'fixing' the logistics for the film. Though it was April
we faced extreme weather hardship, with a mighty snowstorm in
Krivoklat and unceasing rain in Trebon, which however made
for some scenic moments in addition to chilled bones.

Unfortunately I haven't seen the film yet, am expecting it daily;
when its here I'll arrange private viewings in Prague and also
in Cesky Krumlov.

For those of you in England it will be easy enough to see if you
have a TV! since I don't have one I have no idea whether there
are cable or satellite connections here or in other countries
which would ennable you to see it but hope that perhaps there
are and that this information will be of practical value! Perhaps
it will come around later??!!

I'd be interested to hear feedback from anyone who does
let to see it..

Meanwhile we have an official opening date for the Alchemy
Museum in Kutna Hora: Thursday 16th May, 2002 at 6 p.m.

More about this later!

With best regards,
Michal Pober


Subject: ACADEMY : John Dee film
From: Herb Wolfertz Date: Tue, 5 Mar 2002

Michal Pober:

Thank you for your post concerning the "John Dee" film.

As I live on the other side of the Atlantic, is there any possibility that
this film will ever reach the American market?????

If you hear of anything on this, please, if you will, let me know.

Thanks in advance for your consideration!!!!!

Best Wishes,

Herb Wolfertz

Subject: ACADEMY : Monas Hieroglyphica of John Dee and Leibnitz's Monadology
Date: Mon, 11 Mar 2002
From: Tatiana Dolinina

Dear Colleagues!

Does anybody know if there has been any research
(scholarly or other) on possible prior roots of
Leibnitz's Monadology - via Rosicrucian routs of
knowledge or/and from theological concepts and
doctrines of the time (or preceding), mystical
(non-canonical or canonical) Christianity & so on...

Any advice or references would be mostly appreciated.

Thank you all very much in advance.

Sincerely,

Tatiana Dolinina

Subject: ACADEMY : Alchemy museum opening May 16th, 2002
From: Michal Pober
Date: Fri, 8 Mar 2002

Dear Friends,


Finally we see the achievement in sight for which many of us here
have worked long and hard - in the full realisation that this will only
be a beginning and that the real demands of sustaining and
nurturing this project will likely increase rather than diminish!

So first let me invite you, on- and-all who are able to join us on this
historic day to come to Kutna Hora and share the day with us. Or
even a few days, because we may organise a small programme
if there is a way to do so and the demand is there. The inauguration
will be at 6p.m. and there will be a fine concert with our friends
from Kvinterna - an alchemically inspired band from Cesky Krumlov.
The party will continue. Precise details are not yet finalised.

This will also be a time to thank and honour all those who have
carried the vision from the beginning: Roman Rozensky, Lubos
Antonin, Libor Koudela, our former mayor Ivo Sanc and those who
have contributed to its manifestation with time, money and energy,
especially Pavel Novak and Petra Naceradska who have been
through almost all the trials and tribulations with me to reach this
conclusion and Nicholas and Clare Goodrick-Clarke who have
been stalwart pilgrims throughout and Christopher McIntosh who
has also been a true friend and inspiration and has already
promised his attendance. There are many, many more both here
and abroad who will all be honoured in due course. Here on the
ground I would also like to especially thank at this time Vladimir
Karpenko whose work has been of the utmost help
and whose generosity of time has been unstinting.

There is much more to tell! Many more plans for the Hermetic
College, many more stages for the Museum to evolve through.
In the next few days I will be launching a full-throttle effort to achieve
a golden result. This may mean that you'll hear more from me!
Those who pledged donations last year when we were negotiating
with the City are more than welcome to honour those pledges now!
We neglected the usual fundraising channels in the aftermath of
last autumn's events and now the squeeze is on! The cupboards
are bare and we will be paying staff and using full-time
office space soon. Donations in any amount will be very greatly
appreciated and will go a long way still here. But if its a choice of
donating or being here then come! Someone else won't be able
to make it and they'll send money instead!

The list will bevery interesting! Very shortly, after a quick weekend trip,
for example, I'll be posting a translation of a fascinating document which
is a cornerstone of our whole project. This is the alchemical recipe which
was transmitted to Hynek Minsterbersky, son of the Czech King George of
Podebrady. Always believed to have been an alchemist and to have had his
laboratory in the very building where our museum is located, this finally
was demonstrated through a discovery of Lubos Antonin's and the diligent
research of Dr Karpenko to be the real stuff of legends.

And the list will also be a vehicle for deciding on future projects. We
need the contact and the input to keep us grounded in providing the
kind of programmes that will be of real value and interest.
After 2 years at Roztez Manfred Junius has moved on to other
pastures and his particular insights will be missed here.
But the Hermetic College will flourish again and we'll have lots of other
ideas to discuss.. There's a bibliophile tour pending and the next John
Dee Conference will also be held in Kutna Hora.

So please join the list! Details are belowand in whatever way you can
please let your energy shine on our project and be with us on the 16th May
in the flesh or in spirit.

With very best wishes!

Michal Pober


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CONTACT INFO:

Michal Pober
President of the Civic Association for an Alchemy Museum in Kutna Hora
U Jelena 489,
284 01 Kutna Hora,
Czech Republic.

T: +420 327/511 259
F: +420 327/511 260
M: +42 0603 30 80 24
short text message [max. 140 characters]: +420603308024@sms.paegas.cz
mailto:museum@alchemy.cz http://www.alchemy.cz

Subject: ACADEMY : Cipher Manuscripts
From: Hereward Tilton
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002

Dear Academy,

Here's a question unrelated to alchemy, but... does anyone know
where the cipher manuscripts that formed the basis for the rituals
of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn are currently residing?

Hereward Tilton

Subject: ACADEMY : Cipher Manuscripts
From: Henrik Bogdan
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002

According to R. A. Gilbert there are seven major collections of
Golden Dawn materials, of which only two are institutional
libraries; National Library of Ireland (Yeats's papers) and
The Warburg Institute, London (F. L. Gardner's papers).

The other five collections are in private hands, of which only
two are publicly known - Gilbert's collection, and the late
Carr Collin's collection. I have the impression that the Cipher
Manuscripts lies hidden in one of the remaining three
collections, but I would welcome more specific information
as to its whereabouts.

Yours,

Henrik Bogdan, Ph. D. Cand.
University of Göteborg

Subject: ACADEMY : Cipher Manuscripts
From: Adam McLean
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002

Henrik Bogdan wrote :

>I have the impression that the Cipher
>Manuscripts lies hidden in one of the remaining three
>collections, but I would welcome more specific information
>as to its whereabouts.

As far as I am led to understand, the Golden Dawn cipher
manuscript is among Wescott's papers which are in the
private library of the Soc. Ros. - The Societas Rosicruciana
in Anglia. This is a special society with an exclusively Masonic
membership. Being neither a mason nor a member of this
interesting society, I should not know this. But someone
must have stepped out of line and told me !

Some years ago someone, I think it was Mike Magee, published
a little booklet reproducing the pages from the manuscript.
I have a copy somewhere amongst my papers.

Adam McLean

Subject: ACADEMY : Ripley Scroll
From: Adam McLean
Date: 13th March 2002

It is with a touch of sadness that I must announce the demise of a
Ripley Scroll.

The accepted listing of Ripley Scrolls is that in the second
edition of Jacques van Lennep's 'Alchimie'

Here van Lennep lists 20 manuscripts in the supposed historical
order. He notably missed the one owned by Manly Palmer Hall,
now in the Getty Research Library. Also his list was drawn up long
before another later version (which I pointed out to the academy
group last year) was auctioned at Sotheby's in December 2000.

This meant we had 22 manuscript examples of the Ripley Scroll.

The last item on van Lennep's list is described as :-

Location unknown. Manuscript sold at Sotheby (Dyson Perrins
sale) 29th Nov 1960 (lot 147)

One might has supposed that this could have been the copy
resold at Sotheby's in 2000, so I managed to get access to a
copy of the Dyson Perrins sale catalogue through the good
offices of the Ritman Library - (Bibliotheca Philosophica
Hermetica) and luckily there was a good quality photograph
of lot 147.

This was obviously not the Sotheby 2000 manuscript, as they
are drawn in an entirely different style. However, I quickly
realised that this was the Yale version, Ms Beinecke alchemical 41.
Van Lennep had seen the Yale version which is reproduced in
the Mellon Catalogue, so why had he not immediately noticed
that these were the same manuscript? The reason is that the
printer of the Dyson Perrins sale catalogue had reversed the
image. This is easily done at the half tone or plate-making stage
by putting the film on emulsion up instead of down. Printing a
mirror image of a graphic is a standard printer's error.

So sad to say our list of surviving Ripley Scrolls must be now
reduced by one to a mere 21 examples.

Adam McLean

Subject: ACADEMY : Monas Hieroglyphica of John Dee and Leibnitz's Monadology
From: Susanna Åkerman
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002

Tatiana wrote,

> Does anybody know if there has been any research
> (scholarly or other) on possible prior roots of
> Leibnitz's Monadology - via Rosicrucian routs of
> knowledge or/and from theological concepts and
> doctrines of the time (or preceding), mystical
> (non-canonical or canonical) Christianity & so on...


You should read Allison Coudert's books Leibniz and the Kabbalah
and The impact of Kabbalah in the seventeenth century, showing
the influence of Francis Mercury van Helmont on Leibniz and
Anne Conway, author of the Principles of the most ancient and
modern philosophy. Helmont, son of the alchemist, talked to
Conway who used the monad in her book and Helmont
recommended Leibniz to read it. The text of Conway gains insights
from Lurianic Kabbalah and the idea of the Messiah about to
come and transmigration. Leibniz and Helmont sat drinking a
cup of cappucino (yes this is the original text) and Leibniz said
that he wondered where the monads in the coffee would pass
in its next incarnation.

When Allison was in Germany to lecture on this some old fellow
in the audience rose up and said Leibniz was a mathematical
logician and was not influenced by anything, especially not
Kabbalah, but Coudert shows that he was very much involved
in Mercury van Helmonts ideas. Also Sarah Hutton has written
on Conway. Others say Bruno is the source for the monads,
but Helmont actually lived with Leibniz and Conway for months
or more. Coudert has also written on the court of Sulzbach
where Knorr van Rosenroth worked with his Kabblah Denudata.

Coudert thinks this is a almost rosicrucian milieu but I do not
know if one can stretch this concept to include general mystic
kabbalism.

Susanna Åkerman

Subject: ACADEMY : Mysticism in Sweden
From: Eugene Beshenkovsky
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002

Has anyone seen this book? Susanna?
What is inside there? The only copy I've benn able to find is in Dresden.

Many thanks,
Eugene Beshenkovsky

1510. [T-044] Nordische Sammlungen - 1

[SÄGERHOLM, LUDWIG, d. 1763, ed.

Nordische Sammlungen, welche verschiedene Exempel einer lebendigen und
wahren Gottseligkeit im Reiche Schweden in sich halten: Woraus zum Theil der
Zustand und Beschaffenheit der verborgenen Kirche Christi in diesem Reiche
vom Jahre 1680 bis zu unsern Zeiten abzunehmen ist; Von Einem, der mit
diesen Gläubigen und Gerechten Theil zu haben verlänget, herausgegeben. Aus
dem Schwedischen Maniscript ins Hochteutsche übersetzt von L. Sägerholm. 2
Thle. Auf Kosten guter Freunde gedruckt. [Leipzig]: 1755. 2 vols. ; 8º]

References: Meusel, 11, 11; Kayser, 5, 32; SWB (Dresden. Sächsische Landes
Bibliothek)


Subject: ACADEMY : Cipher Manuscripts
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2002
From: Rafal T. Prinke

Adam McLean wrote:

> Some years ago someone, I think it was Mike Magee, published
> a little booklet reproducing the pages from the manuscript.
> I have a copy somewhere amongst my papers.

It was later also published by Darcy Küntz with the introduction
by R. A. Gilbert as vol. 1 of Golden Dawn Studies Series (Holmes
Publishing Group). I have not seen it but the announcement at:

http://www.hermeticgoldendawn.org/ciphermanu.htm

says it contains the facsimile and translation, and some new
material discovered by R. A. Gilbert.

Best regards,

Rafal

Subject: ACADEMY : Monas Hieroglyphica of John Dee and Leibnitz's Monadology
From: Chris Pickering
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 2002

Dear Tatiana,

I have long wondered if there was any influence of
Dees monad upon the monads of Leibniz. For both of
them the monad was the fundamental component in a
theory of the matter - logos - energy - time of the
creation and therefore of human understanding.

As has been noted, any search for evidence would have
to begin with Helmont and Conway.

Personally, reading Leibniz has helped me form an
understanding of Monas Hieroglyphica. Cartesians did
not believe in atoms and void but in continuous matter
and motion. Bodies and space ere explained as volumes
of matter moving as one. But motion implies a
secondary factor, destroying the idea of a single
fundamental factor. Atomists such as Gassendi believed
in the classical atom and void but did not overcome
the problem of knowing how atoms are combined, or
where to stop dividing (a potentially endless task) in
order to reach the atom.

Leibniz tried to combine the two and answer the
objections to both. His monads were like Euclidean
points - location but no dimension - but have
"flowing", so that at any instant they occupy
fractionally more than zero space. These monads are
energy existing as a point, motion being the
manifestation of this energy and the basis of their
combining. It was not until I read this that I could
draw together Dees identification of his own monad
with both Euclidean geometry and with classical 'logoi
spermatikoi' and astrological 'influences'. And the
idea of "flowing" continues throughout a Dee-Leibniz
comparison as I cover below.

Both Dee and Leibniz are also associated with the
search for a philosophy acceptable to both protestants
and catholics, which will unite them, strongly
featuring the search for a universal symbolic language
of the creation, which they both associated with their
monads. But Leibniz believed that his rational
language of truth should be strictly arithmetical
(even binary) whereas Dee could never separate
arithmetic from geometry, believing them aspects of a
whole.

Part of the Dee-Leibniz parallel is in the use of
classification and logic. MH abounds with
classification diagrams and it formed part of Leibniz
universal language. I have not got far in this area,
but I do know that Dee emphasised the reflux
distillation process in laboratory alchemy and
identified the rise and fall with analysis
(separation) and synthesis (combination) in the
rational sense.

The symbols and "algorithms" of Leibniz universal
language influenced his mathematics, and Dee famously
bound maths to all aspects of his philosophy. They
were both obviously driven by the desire to see the
certainty of maths (2+2 always =4) in the rest of life
after the protestant reformation. Calculus, created by
Leibniz, is certainly necessary to understand the
curves and other complex forms of the real world. And
calculus would have enourmosly excited Dee, who was
looking for just such a leap from simple geometry and
algebra to the complexity of creation.

Leibniz monads and "flowing " is fundamental to his
development of calculus and parallels the "fluxions"
and "fluent" of bodies in the calculus of Newton,
developed independently. This parallel may have helped
in the fusion of Leibniz metaphysical philosophy and
Newtons materialistic philosophy in the struggle with
Cartesianism. It is notable that Leibniz arrived at
calculus through algebra and Newton via geometry,
whereas Dee always bound the two together, including in
his theory of the "flux" of the monad.

All of that common in Dee and Leibniz could
conceivably have come independently from the common
background of western thought. But even if there is no
link, I still find reading Leibniz as exciting as
reading Dee.

Chris Pickering


Subject: ACADEMY : Alchemical Manuscripts in the Biblioteca Palatina in Parma
From: Samten de Wet
Date: Sat, 16 Mar 2002

On enquiry whether there were any Alchemical Manuscripts in the
Biblioteca Palatina in Parma, the Librarian kindly brought my
attention to:

Anna Maria Anversa, Ermetismo e astrologia nei manoscritti della
Biblioteca Palatina di Parma, Parma : Tecnografica, 2000. - 69 p. ;
col. ill. ; 24 cm.

There are some interesting colour plates, and the Bibliography gives
further references to the Collection of Manuscripts in the Biblioteca
Palatina in Parma that may be of use to this list.

Samten de Wet


Subject: ACADEMY : Mysticism in Sweden
From: Susanna Åkerman
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 2002

Dear Eugene,

I found this in LIBRIS, the Swedish union catalogue. I shall order
it and take a look. It could be related to Anders Kempes Den
anatomerade Granen, the anatomized Christmas tree
showing how to make alkahest out of Chrsitmas tree cones,
thus enlighteneing all of Europe with this northern fact.

Nordische Sammlungen...Aus dem schwedischen Manuscript
ins Hochdeutsche übers
Förlag/Tryckeri: [Altona]
Utgivningsår: 1755-1761

Editor Johan Forsell

Susanna Åkerman

Subject: ACADEMY : Mysticism in Sweden
From: Eugene Beshenkovsky
Date: 17 Mar 2002

Many thanks, Susanna,

This is another puzzle of the modern electronic world. When I approach
Libris through KVK (Union Catalog of German Libraries) the book is not
there. When I approached Libris Libris directly through Google (a nice
search engine) - the book is there. Should be the same database.
On Monday I am going to Germany for 3-4 months. Will be at the
Franckesche Stifftungen in Halle.

Many thanks again,

Eugene Beshenkovsky

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
From: Susanna Åkerman
Date: Sat, 23 Mar 2002

Dear Academy,

Michael Pober asked for a report on the Art and Alchemy conference
in Aarhus preceded by a the third interdisciplinary John Dee
conference in December 2001, but I could not answer since
Alexandra Lembert of Leipzig University had pledged ourselves
to a written review for a journal. After some setbacks the report is
now published on Arthur Versluis Esoterica website and electronic
journal. Please take a look on the link below. I have written the
Dee part while Alexandra got some of my help to review the many
art and alchemy papers.

I should add that Adam McLean drew attention to that the Ripley
scrolls rolls up down and not left right which poses the question if
they were to be hung up on a wall rather than read in the traditional
way. Perhaps Adam can expand upon his query and observation?

For the review see

http://www.esoteric.msu.edu/VolumeIV/Art-Alchemy.htm

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
From: Adam McLean
Date: 25 Mar 2002

Susanna Åkerman wrote :

>I should add that Adam McLean drew attention to that the Ripley
>scrolls rolls up down and not left right which poses the question if
>they were to be hung up on a wall rather than read in the traditional
>way. Perhaps Adam can expand upon his query and observation?

The little point I was making was in response to someone
at the conference re-iterating an old idea from some
article written a few years ago, that the Ripley Scrolls
may have been hung in apothecaries shops. Apart from the
fact this this was pure supposition, it seemed unlikely
that many apothecaries would have sufficiently high ceilings
- many of the scrolls are over 20 feet long !

The fact that rules this out, lies in the wear on the scrolls.
All the scrolls are worn much more at the top. If the bottom
of the unrolled scroll was at ground level in a shop it
would pick up all the dirt and abrasion from people
touching or rubbing against it. This is not so in the
case of any of the scrolls. The top is the dirty abraded
part and this is consistent with the Ripley scrolls being on a
wooden roll with the top section consequently being
more stressed by each opening and viewing of it. The
bottom is much more protected against abrasion as it
is wound into the centre of the roll on the wooden former.

Adam McLean


Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
Date: Mon, 25 Mar 2002
From: Rafal T. Prinke

Susanna Åkerman wrote:

> After some setbacks the report is now published on
> Arthur Versluis Esoterica website and electronic journal.

> http://www.esoteric.msu.edu/VolumeIV/Art-Alchemy.htm

Concerning the fragment of your valuable report which says:

> Sophie Page (Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge) described Dee's magic
> in comparison with medieval magic and prayer. Page has found
> a Polish sixteenth century prayer book of Wladislaw Warnenczyk
> describing scrying in a crystal. Dee's actions with spirits were
> not an isolated case.

I may add that it has been well known in Poland ever since
Jozef Korzeniowski found it in 1893 in the Bodleian and
published it in 1928. It is certainly not 16th c. - Warnenczyk
was killed in the battle of Varna (hence his nickname) in 1444
but some experts date the "prayerbook" to 1400-1430, so it may
well have been owned by his father - Wladyslaw Jagiello.

It was brought to Cracow in 2000 for the exhibition and
there is a 3 volume catalogue from it (which I haven't seen)
in Polish and English.

If I find some time, I may attempt to produce an on-line
edition of the 1928 publication.

Best regards,

Rafal

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
From: Michal Pober
Date: Mon, 25 Mar 2002

Dear Susanna,

Many thanks!
Wish I could have been there. But perhaps the next
Dee Conference in Kutna Hora?!

Best Regards,

Michal Pober

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
From: Susanna Åkerman
Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002

Rafal Prinke wrote,

> I may add that it has been well known in Poland ever since
> Jozef Korzeniowski found it in 1893 in the Bodleian and
> published it in 1928. It is certainly not 16th c. - Warnenczyk
> was killed in the battle of Varna (hence his nickname) in 1444
> but some experts date the "prayerbook" to 1400-1430, so it may
> well have been owned by his father - Wladyslaw Jagiello.

I am sure I made this dating mistake rather than Sophie Page
whose paper was very interesting, although I missed the century!

Michal Pober, I would readily go to Bohemia if one offered an
alchemy conference with practising alchemists presenting
their insights into laboration to us dumb academics blinded
with our noses deep in the dust.

Susanna

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002
From: Sophie Page

Dear Rafal,

Thank you for this correction which I should have pointed
out earlier. I was aware of the date of the manuscript and my
paper did state that it was fifteenth and not sixteenth century.
I used the Polish edition of the prayerbook and I did not by
any means claim to have discovered the manuscript - in fact
its existence was pointed out to me by a Hungarian scholar
working on medieval magic texts, Benedek Lang. Both
Benedek and Claire Fanger are working on this prayer-book
at a more extensive level than I am, I referred to it (2 paragraphs
in my paper) to suggest, among other examples, that we
should look at genres other than the Ars notoria in relation to
Dee's knowledge and use of medieval magic,

Sophie

Subject: ACADEMY : Aarhus conference
Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002
From: Rafal T. Prinke

Dear Sophie and Susanna,

I hope I did not sound rude - just wanted to correct the mistake.
As I said, I will try to put the "prayerbook" on-line. I have just
done the same with Halliwell's edition of Dee's diary and
a small and unimportant alchemical text by one Vincent Koffski,
probably a mythical figure - but said to have been born in
my home town. The first edition was published by Benedictus
Figulus - but this is the 1682 edition. Have a look at:

http://hum.amu.edu.pl/~rafalp/SALAMANDRA/editions.html

To view the files, you must install a plugin (links are
provided on the page).

Best regards,

Rafal