Pub. Date:
Cambridge University Press
John Dee's Conversations with Angels: Cabala, Alchemy, and the End of Nature

John Dee's Conversations with Angels: Cabala, Alchemy, and the End of Nature

by Deborah E Harkness


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Elizabethan England's most famous natural philosopher John Dee recorded his reflections on the natural world, the practice of natural philosophy, and the apocalypse in a series of conversations with angels, which have long been an enigmatic facet of his life and work. This book makes extensive use of Dee's library and annotations to clarify this mystery by providing a detailed analysis of these conversations. Professor Harkness contextualizes Dee's angel conversations within the natural, philosophical, religious, and social contexts of his time, arguing that the conversations represent a continuing development of John Dee's earlier concerns and interests. This book will appeal to those with an interest in the history of science, students of religion, and everyone who approaches the new millennium with a wary eye.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521027489
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 11/02/2006
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 268
Sales rank: 1,109,970
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.71(d)

About the Author

Deborah Harkness is Associate Professor of History at the University of Southern California. She is the prize-winning author of articles on John Dee's angel conversations and his household.

Table of Contents

List of illustrations; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations and conventions; Introduction; Part I. Genesis: 1. The colloquium of angels: Prague, 1586; 2. Building Jacob's ladder: the genesis of the angel conversations; 3. Climbing Jacob's ladder: angelology as natural philosophy; Part II. Revelations: 4. 'Then commeth the ende': apocalypse, natural philosophy, and the angel conversations; 5. 'The true cabala': reading the book of nature; 6. Adam's alchemy: the medicine of God and the restitution of nature; Epilogue; Select bibliography; Index.

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