The daunting writings of Paracelsus—the second largest 16th-century body of writings in German after Luther’s—contributed to medicine, natural science, alchemy, philosophy, theology, and esoteric tradition. This volume provides a critical edition of essential writings from the authoritative 1589 Huser Paracelsus alongside new English translations and commentary on the sources and context of the full corpus. The Essential Theoretical Writings incorporate topics ranging from metaphyics, cosmology, faith, religious conflict, magic, gender, and education, to the processes of nature, disease and medication, female and male sufferings, and cures of body and soul. Properly contextualized, these treatises yield rich extracts of Renaissance and Reformation culture, soundings of 16th-century life, and keys to an influential but poorly understood early modern intellectual tradition.
Andrew Weeks, Professor of German at Illinois State University, with a doctorate in Comparative Literature from the University of Illinois, has published intellectual biographies of Jacob Boehme, Paracelsus, Valentin Weigel, a history of German mysticism, and translations of Weigel’s writings.
"Presented together as parallel texts, and supplemented with a concise but rich critical apparatus that shows a keen
sensitivity to terminological issues, the selected Paracelsian works and their translations will prove fruitful even for those versed in Paracelsus’s German prose. Altogether, this is a work that should find its way onto many library shelves, and prompt more scholars to edit and make accessible sources from this period."
Anke Timmermann, University of Glasgow,
Ambix vol. 58, no. 2
"Weeks's translation of some of Paracelsus's major works corrects a problem that has veses Paracelsus scholarship for years. Until now, English readers did not have a reliable source to get to know one of the most prolific writers of the sixteenth century. This is a breakthrough for those of us who teach classes in English and wish to provide our students with an accurate representation of the primary source."
Amy Eisen Cislo, Washington University in St Louis,
The Sixteenth Century Journal vol. XLI, no.1