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Alchemy in Cambridge

An Annotated Catalogue of Alchemical Texts and Illustrations in Cambridge Repositories

In: Nuncius
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  • 1 Affiliated Scholar, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge, UKat364@cam.ac.uk
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Alchemy in Cambridge captures the alchemical content of 56 manuscripts in Cambridge, in particular the libraries of Trinity College, Corpus Christi College and St John’s College, the University Library and the Fitzwilliam Museum. As such, this catalogue makes visible a large number of previously unknown or obscured alchemica. While extant bibliographies, including those by M.R. James a century ago, were compiled by polymathic bibliographers for a wide audience of researchers, Alchemy in Cambridge benefits from the substantial developments in the history of alchemy, bibliography, and related scholarship in recent decades. Many texts are here identified for the first time. Another vital feature is the incorporation of information on alchemical illustrations in the manuscripts, intended to facilitate research on the visual culture of alchemy. The catalogue is aimed at historians of alchemy and science, and of high interest to manuscript scholars, historians of art and historians of college and university libraries.

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