One of only 10 sets produced. Book is in fine unread condition. Please note that this edition is bound in natural vellum which has natural facets, colors, lines, etc. It is naturally rustic and one of the best bookbinding materials there is. This book will last many centuries.
Kiesel, William (edited by). Translated from the Arabic by Hashem Atallah. The Picatrix (Ghayat Al-Hakim), The Goal of the Wise. Volume One . Seattle, Ouroboros Press. 2002. First Limited Edition. Bound in full vellum with gilt titles and device to front, device also on back. Spine with 6 compartments and 5 raised bands with red leather label with gilt title to second compartment. Marbled end papers, maroon page ribbon marker. Numbered as “0”. A very small number of the first edition were bound in vellum. 174 pages. Bound by Ars Obscura Bookbinding in Seattle. Some very light wear to vellum on front cover otherwise a fine copy. The vellum is nicely toned, aging quite well.
The Picatrix has long been regarded as source material in the Hermetic tradition. The text of this Medieval work consists of four books covering the art and practice of Astrological, Talismanic and Astral Magic. The author has compiled information derived from 224 books by “ancient sages” (Hermes, Plato & Aristotle and others, known and unknown) with the intention of uniting all these diverse arts into a practical system.
This Ouroboros Press edition is a translation based on the medieval [circa 10th century] Classical Arabic as opposed to the later Renaissance Latin translation. The Warburg Institute originally published the Arabic, German, and Latin editions which are often referred to by scholars and remain the only academic editions extant. Volume one of the Picatrix contains the first two books and are here translated into English for the first time.
Picatrix Volume Two contains the 3rd and 4th books of Ghayat Al-Hakim and completes the English translation. It is a larger book than volume one and contains much in the way of the practical working of astral and talismanic magic. Planetary and Zodiacal magic and full instructions for invoking the related spirits are provided along with all the requisite materials needed: stones, plants, inks, colors, incenses, talismans, and the invocations.
In addition to this are many anecdotes relating to Arabic and pre-Islamic magical lore, including the writings of Ibn Wahshija, the Nabataeans, Sabians, Chaldeans and Assyrians. Of particular note is the magical plant and mineral lore from the Nabataean Agriculture, which portray ancient practices of pagan Iraq.
The influence of the Picatrix can be seen in several texts of well-known authors of the western esoteric tradition, including Ficino, Mirandola, Abano and Agrippa, whose works have played a major role in forming contemporary manifestations of the esoteric tradition today.
The Ouroboros Press edition, intended for English readers, is a translation based on the medieval [circa 10th century] Classical Arabic as opposed to the later Renaissance Latin translation. The Warburg Institute originally published the Arabic, German, and Latin editions which are often referred to by scholars and remain the only academic editions extant.