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Alchemy And Authority In The Holy Roman Empire

Author: Tara Nummedal
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226608573
Size: 72.63 MB
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What distinguished the true alchemist from the fraud? This question animated the lives and labors of the common men—and occasionally women—who made a living as alchemists in the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Holy Roman Empire. As purveyors of practical techniques, inventions, and cures, these entrepreneurs were prized by princely patrons, who relied upon alchemists to bolster their political fortunes. At the same time, satirists, artists, and other commentators used the figure of the alchemist as a symbol for Europe’s social and economic ills. Drawing on criminal trial records, contracts, laboratory inventories, satires, and vernacular alchemical treatises, Alchemy and Authority in the Holy Roman Empire situates the everyday alchemists, largely invisible to modern scholars until now, at the center of the development of early modern science and commerce. Reconstructing the workaday world of entrepreneurial alchemists, Tara Nummedal shows how allegations of fraud shaped their practices and prospects. These debates not only reveal enormously diverse understandings of what the “real” alchemy was and who could practice it; they also connect a set of little-known practitioners to the largest questions about commerce, trust, and intellectual authority in early modern Europe.

Achieving Nuclear Ambitions

Author: Jacques E. C. Hymans
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107376807
Size: 15.28 MB
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Despite the global spread of nuclear hardware and knowledge, at least half of the nuclear weapons projects launched since 1970 have definitively failed, and even the successful projects have generally needed far more time than expected. To explain this puzzling slowdown in proliferation, Jacques E. C. Hymans focuses on the relations between politicians and scientific and technical workers in developing countries. By undermining the workers' spirit of professionalism, developing country rulers unintentionally thwart their own nuclear ambitions. Combining rich theoretical analysis, in-depth historical case studies of Iraq, China, Yugoslavia and Argentina and insightful analyses of current-day proliferant states, Achieving Nuclear Ambitions develops a powerful new perspective that effectively counters the widespread fears of a coming cascade of new nuclear powers.

Alchemical Belief

Author: Bruce Janacek
Publisher: Penn State Press
ISBN: 0271050144
Size: 39.47 MB
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What did it mean to believe in alchemy in early modern England? In this book, Bruce Janacek considers alchemical beliefs in the context of the writings of Thomas Tymme, Robert Fludd, Francis Bacon, Sir Kenelm Digby, and Elias Ashmole. Rather than examine alchemy from a scientific or medical perspective, Janacek presents it as integrated into the broader political, philosophical, and religious upheavals of the first half of the seventeenth century, arguing that the interest of these elite figures in alchemy was part of an understanding that supported their national--and in some cases royalist--loyalty and theological orthodoxy. Janacek investigates how and why individuals who supported or were actually placed at the traditional center of power in England's church and state believed in the relevance of alchemy at a time when their society, their government, their careers, and, in some cases, their very lives were at stake.

Everyday Magic In Early Modern Europe

Author: Kathryn A. Edwards
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317138341
Size: 32.64 MB
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While pre-modern Europe is often seen as having an 'enchanted' or 'magical' worldview, the full implications of such labels remain inconsistently explored. Witchcraft, demonology, and debates over pious practices have provided the main avenues for treating those themes, but integrating them with other activities and ideas seen as forming an enchanted Europe has proven to be a much more difficult task. This collection offers one method of demystifying this world of everyday magic. Integrating case studies and more theoretical responses to the magical and preternatural, the authors here demonstrate that what we think of as extraordinary was often accepted as legitimate, if unusual, occurrences or practices. In their treatment of and attitudes towards spirit-assisted treasure-hunting, magical recipes, trials for sanctity, and visits by guardian angels, early modern Europeans showed more acceptance of and comfort with the extraordinary than modern scholars frequently acknowledge. Even witchcraft could be more pervasive and less threatening than many modern interpretations suggest. Magic was both mundane and mysterious in early modern Europe, and the witches who practiced it could in many ways be quite ordinary members of their communities. The vivid cases described in this volume should make the reader question how to distinguish the ordinary and extraordinary and the extent to which those terms need to be redefined for an early modern context. They should also make more immediate a world in which magic was an everyday occurrence.

Scientific Revolution Oxford Bibliographies Online Research Guide

Author: Sheila Rabin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199810826
Size: 71.51 MB
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This ebook is a selective guide designed to help scholars and students of Islamic studies find reliable sources of information by directing them to the best available scholarly materials in whatever form or format they appear from books, chapters, and journal articles to online archives, electronic data sets, and blogs. Written by a leading international authority on the subject, the ebook provides bibliographic information supported by direct recommendations about which sources to consult and editorial commentary to make it clear how the cited sources are interrelated related. This ebook is a static version of an article from Oxford Bibliographies Online: Renaissance and Reformation, a dynamic, continuously updated, online resource designed to provide authoritative guidance through scholarship and other materials relevant to the study of European history and culture between the 14th and 17th centuries. Oxford Bibliographies Online covers most subject disciplines within the social science and humanities, for more information visit www.oxfordbibliographies.com.

Saltpeter

Author: David Cressy
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019969575X
Size: 32.41 MB
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The story of the science, the technology, the politics and the military applications of saltpeter - the vital but mysterious substance that governments from the Tudors to the Victorians regarded as an 'inestimable treasure'.

Revolutionizing The Sciences

Author: Peter Dear
Publisher:
ISBN:
Size: 58.51 MB
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From Copernicus, who put the earth in orbit around the sun, to Isaac Newton, who gave the world universal gravitation, the Scientific Revolution of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries transformed the way Europeans understood their world. In this book, Peter Dear offers an accessible introduction to the origins of modern science for students and general readers. This second edition further explores the practice and influence of alchemy, the social standing of early scientists, and the role of medicine and medical practitioners. Provides a comprehensive overview of principal themes and topics Discusses central figures, including Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton, and describes the world in which they lived--and the new world they helped create Features a rich variety of illustrations, a glossary of terms, and a list of further reading

The Business Of Alchemy

Author: Pamela H. Smith
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691015996
Size: 71.75 MB
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In showing how an overriding concern with religious salvation was transformed into a concentration on material increase and economic policies, Pamela Smith depicts the rise of modern sicence and early capitalism in the 16th- and 17-century world of the Holy Roman Empire. Smith uses as example the life of Johann Joachim Becher (1635-1682), whose ideasfrom alchemy to economicstypify those of his generation. 30 photos.