oldmanuscripts

Based on the work of Paracelsus, Robert Fludd devised an alchemical theory of creation wherein god separated the materials of the universe out of a chaotic prima materia, in the same way that an alchemist in a laboratory would do. These engravings from the History of the Two Worlds, 1617, illustrated his wild theories. Source: archive.org


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Title page of De Arte divina & sacra, sine Aenigmate tradita & del praxin conscripta by Anonymous, ca. 1700. At the top of the painting you can see the Greek God Hermes, representing the element Mercury, the peacock representing the end of the Nigredo stage, and the element of air, represented by the faces blowing. From Manly P. Hall’s collection of alchemical manuscripts Box 3, MS 14

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Drawings and watercolor paintings of sacred geometry from Cabala, Unknown Author, 1700. The manuscript contains 13 images, a holy number that represents the oneness of God for the Jewish people, with no accompanying text, and prominently features a Star of David or hexagram. From: Manly P. Hall’s Collection of Alchemical Manuscripts, Box 17 MS 71

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Tables showing occult correspondences of “seven rulers of the earth,” celestial spirits of the planets. The second chart shows how to recognize them in geomantic divination, and the correspondences to help with interpretation of the reading. From Theomagia, or, The Temple of Wisdome, John Heydon, 1663. Source: The Getty Alchemy Collection


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Emblems from Manly P. Hall’s collection of alchemical manuscripts, 1600, Box 4, MS 19. From: archive.org


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Ubume is a yokai that’s a ghost of a pregnant woman. She appears as a woman carrying a baby who hands the child off before vanishing. The recipient soon finds the baby is actually a heavy rock or bundle of leaves. To prevent women from becoming Ubume, their unborn child was removed and placed beside them in their grave. From Bakemono No E

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The Triangular Book of St. Germain Is a French manuscript written in code. When deciphered, it gives instructions on how to use magic to locate treasure and prolong your life, which requires a special amulet. The shape is thought to ensure the spirits called will be honest and dutiful. From Manly P. Hall’s collection of Alchemical Manuscripts, Box 34 MS. 209, 1750.

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Alchemical art from Alchemy: Ancient and Modern by H. Stanley Redgrove, 1911. The sea represents the body, and the two fish represent the Soul and Spirit. Colorized by Eve Harms. Licensed under CC0


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Alchemical Diagrams from De Roode Leeuw, of het Sout der Philosophen (The Red Lion, or the Sout of the Philosophers) by Goossen van Vreeswyk, 1672. Source: Embassy of the Free Mind

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A chart of characters used in Geomancy, a divination method that uses markings on the ground or tossing handfuls of earth, sand or rocks. These characters are identified in the arrangement and charts help interpret the meaning. From The Book of the Magi, Francis Barrett, 1896. Source: Wellcome Library


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Images from Geestelyke Natuurkunde by Johan Jacob Scheuchzer, 1728. Scheuchzer’s tome, whose title translates to “Spiritual Physics”, depicted spiritual phenomena and bible stories along with diagrams of animal biology, geology, astronomy, and other sciences. Source: Embassy of the Free Mind

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Drawing representing balance between masculine and feminine in a chapter about equilibrium from “Le serpent de la Genèse” (The Serpent of Genesis) Volume 2, by Stanislas de Guaita, 1920. Source: Embassy of the Free Mind


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