CategoriesMagic and SorceryAlchemy and Theurgy Atalanta Fugiens

Atalanta Fugiens

Atalanta Fugiens

Product no.: 0-933999-82-8
Michael Maier's alchemical emblem book Atalanta fugiens was first published in Latin in 1617.

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Publisher's Synopsis

It was a most amazing book as it incorporated 50 emblems with epigrams and a discourse, but extended the concept of an emblem book by incorporating 50 pieces of music, the "fugues" or canons. In this sense it was an early example of multimedia.


"This edition of Atalanta Fugiens represents the first opportunity in over 350 years for Michael Maier's great scheme of emblematic, allegorical, musical contemplation to be experienced in its totality, and will be welcomed by all students of alchemical symbolism, Renaissance Hermeticism, and the Western inner traditions."         ~Adam McLean


"We find the Allegorye of Saturn to be taken diverse ways, for the Astronomers reputed him the Highest of the Planets, and the students of chemistry the basest of metalls, namely lead. The Heathen Poets say he was the Father of Jupiter, the Son of Heaven. The Mythologists explain him by the notion of Time. But though all these may seem to have a probable opinion according to their own sense, yet they will never be able to explain certain thinges which are elsewhere spoken of Saturn; such as why he should devour his Sons and Vomit up a Stone instead of Jupiter. Or why he should be the Finder Out or Discoverer of Truth; why he should be remarkable for his Scythe and Serpent, or his Blacknesse, moroseness and distorted feet.

The Mythologists think they give the best interpretation when they say Time reveals and manifests Truth out of Darknesse, that it rolls itself around and glides away like a Serpent, and that it cuts all thinges down with Death as with a Scythe. That he devours his Sons, to wit all beings that he ever begot, but that he cannot consume or digest hard Stones, and therefore may be said to Vomit them up again."      ~Emblem XII. The Stone which Saturn vomited up, being devoured instead of his Son Jupiter, is placed on the Helicon as a Monument to Men.


Michael Maier was a 17th-century alchemist and physician to the court of Emperor Rudolf II in Prague. Between 1614 and his death in 1622, Maier published a number of alchemical works, of which Atalanta Fugiens was undoubtedly the richest and most important.

Editor Godwin, Joscelyn
Author Maier, Michael
Translator Godwin, Joscelyn
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 215 pp.
Publisher Phanes Press 1989
Series Magnum Opus Hermetic Sourceworks
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