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Anonymous - The Secret Book of Artephius (65.0 Kb)

Cover of Anonymous's Book The Secret Book of ArtephiusBook downloads: 266
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Artephius (Arthephius, Artefius) is a name to which a number of alchemical and magical texts, first extant in Latin, are ascribed.Although the origin of the texts is unclear and the identity of their author obscure, at least some of them may go back to Arabic antecedents. Roger Bacon alludes to The Secret Book of Artephius, indicating that it goes back at least to the thirteenth century. In the sixteenth century there were numerous allusions. In printed form, works attributed to Artephius became well known in the seventeenth... More >>>
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Category 1:  Mystic and Occultism
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Author:      Anonymous
Format:      eBook
Artephius (Arthephius, Artefius) is a name to which a number of alchemical and magical texts, first extant in Latin, are ascribed.Although the origin of the texts is unclear and the identity of their author obscure, at least some of them may go back to Arabic antecedents. Roger Bacon alludes to The Secret Book of Artephius, indicating that it goes back at least to the thirteenth century. In the sixteenth century there were numerous allusions. In printed form, works attributed to Artephius became well known in the seventeenth century. A work Artefii clavis majoris sapientiae was printed in Paris in 1609. Later it would also appear within Volume IV of Theatrum Chemicum, printed originally in 1613. Then in 1624, Eirenaeus Orandus provided an English translation of the 'secret booke'. A Renaissance tradition held that Artephius had been born in the first or second century and died in the twelfth, thanks to having discovered the alchemical elixir that made it possible to prolong life. In his Secret Book, Artephius indeed claims to be more than a thousand years old. Artephius is sometimes identified with Apollonius of Tyana. There also seems to be some tendency to confuse him with Orpheus, perhaps because both figures are supposed to have had the ability to converse with birds.

About Author:

"Anonymous" of course means "without a name" and is used when the author is not known--or sometimes, when a story develops out of an oral tradition over generations with possibly many storytellers contributing to and revising the tale before it is finally written down and becomes literature.

A notable amount of ancient and medieval literature is anonymous. This is not only due to the lack of documents from a period, but also due to an interpretation of the author's role that differs considerably from the romantic interpretation of the term in use today. Ancient and Medieval authors were often overawed by the classical writers and the Church Fathers and tended to re-tell and embellish stories they had heard or read rather than invent new stories. And even when they did, they often claimed to be handing down something from an auctor instead. From this point of view, the names of the individual authors seemed much less important, and therefore many important works were never attributed to any specific person.