York Beach, Maine USA: The Teitan Press, 2012. First Edition. Hardcover. 8vo. xxii + 242pp. Quality black cloth with gilt facsimile signature on upper board, gilt titling to spine, frontis, index. Edition limited to 650 hand numbered copies. Book is in new unread condition.
“A Magus Among the Adepts” is a wholly new collection of thirty fugitive and unpublished papers by William Wynn Westcott. In the public mind Westcott is primarily associated with the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and while the twelve papers in the first section of this collection includes three unpublished addresses to members of the Golden Dawn, as well as gathering Westcott’s correspondence concerning Mathers and Crowley for the first time, they also include writings on alchemy, rosicrucianism, and magic. Other aspects of Western Esotericism – symbolism, divination, Kabbalah, the Mysteries and Freemasonry – are taken up in the thirteen papers that make up the following three sections. In all of them Westcott’s facility with his varied subject matter – from Gnostic doctrines; Zodiacal signs; Egyptian Mysteries; Kabalistic Cosmogony; and the Number 666, to the lore of the Basilisk, the Mandrake and “Mystical Animals of Antiquity,” among much else – and his mastery over its content, is clear. The final section of this collection contains two entertaining essays in which Westcott reflects on his professional career as a coroner. His life as a whole is encapsulated in a new biographical introduction by R. A. Gilbert, who has drawn upon a wealth of contemporary and personal archives to provide a rounded and detailed portrait of every facet of this complex and enigmatic man.