Download A Study of the Life and Works of Athanasius Kircher, by John Edward Fletcher, Elizabeth Fletcher PDF

By John Edward Fletcher, Elizabeth Fletcher

Athanasius Kircher, a German Jesuit in 17th-century Rome, used to be an enigma. Intensely pious and a prolific writer, he was once additionally a polymath serious about every thing from Egyptian hieroglyphs to the tiny creatures in his microscope. His correspondence with popes, princes and monks used to be a window into the stressed power of the interval. It confirmed first-hand the seventeenth-centurys fight for wisdom in astronomy, microscopy, geology, chemistry, musicology, Egyptology, horology The checklist is going on. Kirchers books replicate the way of thinking of 17th-century students - unending interest and a considerable larding of naiveté: Kircher scorned alchemy because the wishful taking into account charlatans, but believed in dragons.His existence and correspondence offer a key to the transition from the center a long time to a brand new clinical age. This booklet, although unpublished, has been lengthy quoted and talked about. Awaited by means of students and experts of Kircher, it truly is ultimately to be had with this variation.

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C. ’ Of the symposia, Beinlich’s Magie des Wissens has the widest coverage. 33 Subtited: Index Alphabeticus; Index Geographicus. , 11. These two researchers were definitely needed, for Kircher’s correspondence opens up important windows on to the riches of Eastern European scholarship in the seventeenth century. xxx introduction To others must go the credit of exploring Kircher’s thought in terms of the complex currents we have come to name ‘esoteric’. Fletcher does not spot any temper or pursuit of wisdom that might go by that name, and characteristically skirts around the relevant issues.

Des kurfürstlichen Gymnasiums zu Fulda—23/24 März. 40 Komp, Die zweite Schule Fuldas, p. 35. 12 chapter one collapse: ‘bei der Besichtigung bekanten die baumester, die gütliche vorsehung habe hier gewaltet’. This terrible accident remains unnoted by Kircher, although there can be little doubt that he took part in the fire-fighting. It is probable that about this time, if not earlier, Kircher made the decision to enter the Society of Jesus. 41 That Kircher should choose to become a Jesuit42 is convincing proof of his religious faith.

67 In 1646 Albert Spieh SJ wrote to Kircher reminding him of their mutual studies in Cologne: ‘sub P. Adamo Kasen in Physica’: Epist. XIII. 251 (Coblenz, 22 April). 68 See his Musurgia universalis, Rome 1650, Praef. 69 This sundial, noted by Reiffenberg, Historia Societatis JESV, p. 257, was renewed in 1926. m. ; it is decorated with the signs of the Zodiac and bears the motto ‘ea fugit umbra. fugit tacito pede et annus et aetas’ (‘There flees the shadow. On silent foot do flee both year and age’); see E.

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