Khunrath, 1609

An image of The Emerald Tablet on which is written As above, so Below. (Image from Khunrath, 1609)

The Hermetic Corpus is the source from which many alchemists and scholars of the occult derive their view of the world, the universe and everything. The fundamental premise of hermeticism is expressed in the phrase “As above, so below”.

The phrase is depicted inAmpitheatrum sapientiae aeternae an alchemical work written by Rosicrucian Heinrich Khunrath and published in Hanover in 1609.Rosicrucians were members of a secret society of mystics, said to have been founded in late medieval Germany by Christian Rosenkreuz, a mysterious figure of whom no documentary record survives.

The sect believed that texts such as those ascribed to Trismegistus contain esoteric truths "concealed from the average man”, that provide “insight into nature, the physical universe and the spiritual realm”. The sect flourished in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and devoted itself to rigorous scientific studies of the occult. Its members included founding father of the USA and kite-flying bright-spark, Benjamin Franklin.

Fludd, 1629

The Rose was a favourite symbol of the Rosicrucians. This work has been extensively annotated by a budding student. (Image from Fludd, 1629)

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