Monday, December 27, 2010

Interesting Antiquarian Books - including Medieval Music


POPE, Alexander. Essay on Man. In Epistles to a Friend. Epistle I. Corrected by the Author. London: J. Wilford , 1733.

The four epistles of the Essay on Man were published successively on February 20, March 29, May 8, 1733 and finally on January 24, 1734. The first editions of the first three Epistles appear in variant states, the priority of which is not always clear, but none of which are of significance textually (except Griffith's issue "I" of Epistle I, which Pope revised).

The 'friend' to whom the Epistles were addressed was Henry St. John, Lord Bolingbroke. But this poem was not simply a statement of Bolingbroke's deistic philosophy. It has been referred to as 'a public, social and classical poem', a poem that takes into account Newton's impersonal universe but also interweaves a 'tissue of images from older and more human conceptions' (M. Mack, Works, Vol. III) and which examines the human condition against a Miltonic, cosmic bacground. Although Pope's perspective is well above our everyday life, and he does not hide his wide knowledge, the work is suggestive, dramatic, exciting, and sometimes even comfortably concrete: "Each beast, each insect, happy in its own: / Is Heaven unkind to Man, and Man alone?"

Pope died on May 30, 1744. He left his property to Martha Blount. With the growth of Romanticism Pope's poetry was increasingly seen as outdated and the 'Age of Pope' ended. It was not until 1930s when serious attempt was made to rediscover the poet's work.

Cabbalistic and Theosophicum 1760

Music Scores

berkeley music library

Thesaurus musicus, being a collection of the newest songs, with a thorow-bass to each song for the harpsichord, theorbo, or bass-viol, to which is annexed a collection of aires, composed for two flute.
(London: J. Heptinstall, 1693-96)

The Berkeley Theory Manuscript, (Jan 12, 1375)

Libro Sexto QVE Diego Pisador (b. 1510).
Libro de musica de vihuela (Salamanca: 1552)


Albertus Magnus and Michael Scot, De Secretis Mulierum 1702
This volume also included Michael Scot’s De Secretis Nature

A classic compilation on magical secrets in this case on the secrets of women and the secrets of nature, two texts which were among the most sought after in the 15th and 16th centuries. The content of the two works especially focus on women and childbirth, charms, advice and recipes for all sorts of occasions, magical cures for men and beasts, etc. Both authors derive much of their learning from a wide range of Classical and Mediaeval scientific and magical sources, such as Aristotle, Hermes, Galen, Albertus Magnus and his pupil Henry of Saxony. Together they constitute an exhaustive collection of secret knowledge related to the Grimoire tradition.

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