The Great Book of Magical Art, Hindu Magic and East Indian Occultism and The Book of Secret Hindu, Ceremonial, and Talismanic Magic. In One Volume. L. W. DE LAURENCE.
The Great Book of Magical Art, Hindu Magic and East Indian Occultism and The Book of Secret Hindu, Ceremonial, and Talismanic Magic. In One Volume.
The Great Book of Magical Art, Hindu Magic and East Indian Occultism and The Book of Secret Hindu, Ceremonial, and Talismanic Magic. In One Volume.

The Great Book of Magical Art, Hindu Magic and East Indian Occultism and The Book of Secret Hindu, Ceremonial, and Talismanic Magic. In One Volume.

Chicago, IL: The de Laurence Company, Inc., 1939. "Fourteenth Edition" Hardcover, Large Quarto. (8 x 11 inches) 636 pp. Maroon faux leather with gilt title, etc. to cover and spine, frontis photo portrait of L. W. de Laurence. Illustrated. A massive book 'by' Lauron William de Laurence (1868 - 1936), renowned book pirate, plagiarist, and publisher of occult literature. De Laurence was notorious for taking other people's works and reissuing them under his own name (sometimes re-titling them in the process). Despite his roguish eccentricities de Laurence played an important part in the occult history of the USA: he was a pioneer in selling occult books and supplies by mail order, and the cheap "Pow Wow" books and other books of simple magic which he published were surprisingly well received, and he is quite revered in some quarters. The title of this particular volume says 'Hindu' and 'East Indian' but in fact it is largely a grimoire of Western ritual magic, taken from a variety of sources including Francis Barrett's Magus, the works of Agrippa et al. It's odd title and genesis aside, it was probably one of the most widely used for actual magical practice in the USA in the middle years of the twentieth century. De Laurence also took considerable liberties with the editions and publication dates of his books - sometimes designating a particular printing a much higher "edition number" than it could possibly have been, presumably with the idea of convincing would-be buyers that it was a "best-seller." In the case of "The Great Book of Magical Art" the edition seemed to leap more or less directly from the first to the fourteenth. Unfortunately for those interested in bibliographic history - there it stayed, with copies produced from 1939 right up to the 1970s all marked "fourteenth edition, 1939," despite wildly differing bindings and paper types. Typically, this copy purports to be a "fourteenth edition, 1939," and we would judge from the binding etc. that it may well have been published in 1939 or thereabouts. Edges lightly rubbed, a few light marks to pages edges, front blank unevenly browned, light erasure mark to upper edge of front blank, otherwise a bright - solid and unmarked VG + copy. (no jacket -as issued) Oversize book, shipping at cost. Item #41052

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