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Classical Antiquity

Classical Antiquity

Classical antiquity (also the classical era or classical period) is a broad term for a long period of cultural history centred on the Mediterranean Sea, comprising the interlocking civilizations of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. It is conventionally taken to begin with the earliest-recorded Greek poetry of Homer (8th–7th century B.C.), and continues through the rise of Christianity and the decline of the Roman Empire (5th century AD). It ends with the dissolution of classical culture at the close of Late Antiquity (AD 300-600), blending into the Early Middle Ages. Such a wide sampling of history and territory covers many disparate cultures and periods. The civilization of the ancient Greeks has been immensely influential on the language, politics, educational systems, philosophy, science, art and architecture of the modern world, fuelling the Renaissance in Western Europe and again resurgent during various neo-classical revivals in the 18th and 19th centuries.

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  • The Voynich Manuscript

    The first authorized copy of this mysterious, much-speculated-upon, one-of-a-kind, centuries-old puzzle. The Voynich Manuscript is produced from new photographs of the entire original and accompanied by expert essays that invite anyone to understand and explore the enigma. Many call the fifteenth-century codex, commonly known as the "Voynich Manuscript," the world's most mysterious book. Written in an unknown script by an unknown author, the manuscript has no clearer purpose now than when it was rediscovered in 1912 by rare books dealer Wilfrid Voynich. The manuscript appears and disappears throughout history, from the library of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II to a secret sale of books in 1903 by the Society of Jesus in Rome. The book's language has eluded decipherment, and its elaborate illustrations remain as baffling as they are beautiful. For the first time, this facsimile, complete with elaborate folding sections, allows readers to explore this enigma in all its stunning detail, from its one-of-a-kind "Voynichese" text to its illustrations of otherworldly plants, unfamiliar constellations, and naked women swimming though fantastical tubes and green baths. The essays that accompany the manuscript explain what we have learned about this work-from alchemical, cryptographic, forensic, and historical perspectives-but they provide few definitive answers. Instead, as New York Times best-selling author Deborah Harkness says in her introduction, the book "invites the reader to join us at the heart of the mystery." Learn More
    £39.99

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  • Tartaros: On the Orphic and Pythagorean Underworld, and the Pythagorean Pentagram

    The magical doctrines of the ancient Orphics and Pythagoreans are poorly understood by modern scholars, in part because they were secretive in their own time. Well-known for speaking in riddles and complex ciphers, its adepts were bound by strict taboo and silence, the breaking of which was punishable by death. The enigma of the cult’s teachings was further shrouded by centuries of suppression, and, in some cases, appropriation or misrepresentation, by the growing forces of Christianity. What remains today are the fragments of its lost books, together with the words of those who, for good or ill, wrote about them. In an original interpretation and synthesis apt for today’s student of ancient mysticism and the occult, August Alm advances a new conception of these ancient mystery-cults and their sublime doctrines of Chaos, Darkness and Light. Tartaros Book Cover A foundational part of these ancient Greek mystery-cults was the concept of Tartaros. As the abyss of primeval darkness and chaos, Tartaros was, in its most ancient conception, the birthplace of the human soul and the cosmos itself. This vast and incomprehensible dominion held at its center a great fire, an Axis Mundi about which the universe was arranged. In later eras, it passed into myth as a vast and voidful underworld; a place of binding for condemned souls and the enemies of gods, sealed fast with barriers of bronze and iron. Christians later appropriated it as a partition of their own concept of eternal punishment, a division of hell which constrained no less than the fallen angels. An equally enigmatic Pythagorean cipher is the symbol of the Pentagram, or five-fold star, whose form has been revered in western magic for some three millennia, but whose origins and original attributes are shrouded in mystery. Its attribution to the four elements, joined together with aither, was popularized in the middle ages and is its best-known meaning in modern occult sciences. However, its earlier Pythagorean usage was related to health and well-being, and almost certainly adumbrated another retinue of arcana, one which was ancient even at the time of Pythagoras. Exhuming the scattered fragments of these two elder doctrines of Tartaros and the Pentagram, Alm examines their reverberation as occult –and occluded-- concepts through centuries of philosophical thought, in a line connecting the shadowy teachings of such ‘dark traditions’ as the Orphics and the Pythagoreans, later penetrating the adyta of Neoplatonism. Arguing for a new undertanding of the Pentagram, he connects its fivefold mystery to the great powers of Tartaros, and also to such terrifying gods such as Hecate, Nyx, Erebos, Typhon, Cerberus, and the Erinyes. This strand of mystery touches upon such related concepts as the high theogony implicit within the Platonic Solids, the shadowy influence of the Cult of the Idaean Dactyls on Pythagoreanism, the Light which is rooted in Darkness, and the magical pathology of the ‘Unrooted Tree’. Learn More
    £39.99

  • The Secret History of Poltergeists and Haunted Houses: from Pagan Folklore to Modern Manifestations

    Exploring accounts of poltergeists from ancient Greece and Rome, medieval Europe, and the modern world, Claude Lecouteux finds that while our interpretations of poltergeists may change, the manifestations always follow a similar course and evolution. Learn More
    £15.99

  • The Dawn of Genius: The Minoan Super-Civilization and the Truth About Atlantis

    Learn of a world of accomplishment, peace and prosperity that already existed two thousand years before Ancient Greek thinkers tried to recreate the true Golden Age of Man. Learn More

    Regular Price: £10.99

    Special Price £8.79

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  • Giza Prophecy: The Orion Code and the Secret Teachings of the Pyramids

    The structures at Giza were not created as tombs, but as "recovery vaults" to ensure the rebirth of the kingdom after global disaster, and the pyramids are encoded with records of catastrophic events both in the past and in the future. Learn More
    £16.99

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  • Regular Price: £14.99

    Special Price £13.49

  • £28.00

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