4 Jan 2009. I have not been updating the web pages over the past few months, as I have been very busy consolidating the bibliography. Some work has been going into updating missing elements in entries, and in adding the thousands of entries and bookmarks for web pages that I have on my computer. The major work though has been in reclassifying the whole bibliography and in setting up conventional sort orders within call numbers. The relationships between subjects and alchemical interpretations has become complex, and a more sophisticated scheme is required. More details will appear in the 'Using' page. Once this work is complete, then I shall, again, start regular updates of the web pages. The total number of records currently is 14,082.
31 Aug 2008. Routine statistics: 269 new and updated records this month, which includes 255 brand new records, 2181 online records, 526 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 13462 records.
31 Jul 2008. Routine statistics: 165 new and updated records this month, which includes 153 brand new records, 2147 online records, 520 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 13207 records. Work is proceeding well on the changes to the arrangement of the bibliography and differentiation of roles in the general index.
30 June 2008. Routine statistics:152 new and updated records this month, which includes 138 brand new records, 2137 online records, 500 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 13054 records. I have started to reorganise the classification scheme for prolific authors, and those who have been reprinted (e.g. Paracelsus, Vaughan, Andreae, Holmyard, Muir, etc). Instead of the rather simple arrangement by title under major authors, authors of texts will be arranged in a conventional order:
In each case, different editions will be arranged chronologically by date of earliest English edition, and will be followed by the reprints (or web versions) of that particular edition.
The other change is that in the general index, personal and corporate names will be distinguished as to their role (e.g. secondary subject, translator, editor, etc). Any name that does not have a modifier, such as (ed) for editor, will be an author. I feel that this will help an index user, when faced with an entry for, say, Paracelsus, and an undifferentiated string of item numbers.
31 May 2008. Routine statistics:164 new and updated records this month, which includes 150 brand new records, 2127 online records, 487 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,916 records.
30 Apr 2008. Routine statistics:137 new and updated records this month, which includes 115 brand new records, 2114 online records, 461 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,766 records. I have started to include references to other standard bibliographies in the field indicating whether an item has been seen or not (Duveen, Ferguson, Gilbert, etc). This change will not be visible, though, until the next full update. I have also included the meaning of some standard abbreviations in the 'Using' page. Thanks are due to Roberta Albrecht for her papers.
31 Mar 2008. Routine statistics: 265 new and updated records this month, which includes 216 brand new records, 2098 online records, 292 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,651 records. No major changes this month, just steadily adding material. Particular thanks are due to Professor Karpenko for the supply of his papers.
29 Feb 2008. Routine statistics: 160 new and updated records this month, which includes 134 brand new records, 2069 online records, 275 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,435 records. The major change this month is that the full bibliography is now available as on CD (rather than just an email attachment). The CD autoruns, and mimics this web site, with the change that the page 'Full bibliography' now contains the full bibliography as at Jan 2008 (12,150 records), rather than just a description of the bibliography & ordering information.
31 Jan 2008. Routine statistics: 182 new and updated records this month, which includes 153 brand new records (there have been a lot of changes in class numbers this month), 2044 online records, 262 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,303 records. Not much specific to report this month - just routine updating.
31 Dec 2007. Routine statistics: 208 new and updated records this month, which includes 106 brand new records (there have been a lot of changes in class numbers this month), 2012 online records, 238 in the bookshop page and a grand total of 12,148 records. This will be the new January 2008 edition of the priced full bibliography For those purchasing the full bibliography, the numbers have risen from 11,029 (a rise of approximately 10%) since last June. I have been clearing up some class numbers and have now got rid of the C999 number for records which I had not classified properly, and have reclassified old numbers relating to symbolism, so that they are all at 1P.
30 Nov 2007. Routine statistics: 250 new and updated records this month, which includes 208 completely new records (the difference being records with significant changes and headings), 1981 online records, 179 in the expanded Bookshop page, and a grand total of 12,043 in the full bibliography. The bookshop page is concentrating on providing links to Amazon US and only includes text links to save save (and bandwidth). I have included the 'hover facility' so that if you put your mouse over the url, you get a cover image and the link to Amazon. In some cases the hover will not appear to work. This will generally indicate a direct link to publishers (such as Adam McLean) who do not sell through the trade. In these cases you will get a direct link to the publisher, and their purchasing page.
31 Oct 2007. A lot of changes this month. First the routine statistics. 326 new and updated records this month, which includes 286 completely new records (the difference being records with significant changes and headings), 1957 online records, 73 in the expanded Bookshop page, and a grand total of 11,834 in the full bibliography. I have updated the Using the bibliography page to include information on obtaining books and other items that appear in the bibliography. I have updated the 'Books for sale' page (which is now called the Alchemy Bookstore to include many more items. The long-term aim is to include all items available through Amazon. As explained in the 'Using' page, if you buy a book through my link, I get a small percentage which helps to offset the cost of the web site and compiling the bibliography. I have added Change detection boxes to some of the pages. If you want to be notified of changes to pages, then sign up and you will get an email any time I update the page. You will never be spammed. See www.changedetection.com for further details about the service they offer. I use it to keep track of important sites and have never found any problems.
30 Sep 2007. 213 new and updated records this month, which includes 178 completely new records. 1908 online records. The main file now contains 11,548 records. Major inclusions this month include more Jungian material and I have been working through the Holmes Publishing Group catalogue.
31 Aug 2007. 159 new and updated records this month, which includes 126 genuinely new ones plus records with major changes and some dummy records for headings. 1874 online records. The main file now has 11,370 records. I have started to experiment with some headings to appear in the various sequences. Still working on these to make them stand out and to expand them, so expect some changes in the future. I am closing down the alternative site at www.cix.co.uk/~apritchard. alchemy-bibliography.co.uk will be the only home for the bibliography in future. New records this month include quite a few dissertations and a lot of psychology (Jungian) material.
31 Jul 2007. 215 new records and records with major changes, with a total of 11244 entries in the main file. 1836 online records. I have finished scanning the Hermetic Journal and all relevant articles have been included.
30 Jun 2007. First month of the new arrangements for updating. 90 new records, and a total of 1795 online records. I have changed the concept of 'New this month' to include both records added to the database and those that have significant changes made to the records, especially changes to class numbers.
31 May 2007. A total of 11,029 record, 76 new, and 1793 online. The new publication is now ready and can be found on the web site at the main bibliography page. The full bibliography will no longer be available free of charge, but is priced at a reasonable cost of £14.95 (around $28-$30, depending upon the exchange rate). A description of the file is to be found at the url with links to Paypal and Google for making payment. This edition of the bibliography is designated Edition 2-01 and new versions will appear every 6 months, in January and June. The bibliography can be downloaded from here as a password protected .zip file (containing 8 .pdf files). On notification of payment, I will send the password, so that the files can be unpacked. Still remaining on the web site are the monthly list of new records and the full list of online records. I have also started a new page of specific links to Amazon and other sources if you want to buy any books. This does not contain many records at the moment, but will grow as time goes buy. Click here for the Books for Sale page.
30 April 2007. A total of 10952 records, 228 new records (March & April), and 1781 online. The complete bibliography is getting too large for a single document. It is about 3.6Mb in size. Probably from next month, therefore, I will only be publishing the 'New this month' page and possibly the 'Available Online' pages on the web site. The full bibliography will be available as a paid-for publication priced at $29.95. It will be distributed as a .zip file containing the full bibliography, subject index, the notes on using the bibliography, and the introduction to the First edition. There will be a new version probably every 6 months (June and December). The modest charge will help to fund the hosting costs and the costs of continuing research. The links to PayPal for the bibliography will appear in a number of places: the web page (obviously), eBay, Lulu.
28 Feb 2007. A total of 10,722 records, 174 new this month and 1,670 online entries. I found some problems with the Index to the bibliography, but think I have sorted this out now. This will be the last month of running the two web sites together. I may skip an update at the end of March in order to do some rationalisation.
1 Feb 2007. I have made a number of significant changes to the bibliography this month. I have completed the inclusion of the 1st (printed) edition into the new bibliography. There is now a total of 10,548 entries, with a total of 255 new entries, and 1566 online entries. As well as the entries in the 1st edition, I have also included the preliminary material (Acknowledgements; Preface: On alchemy and its bibliography; Introduction: The arrangement and layout of the bibliography), and the Appendix (List of items searched). This is now available at Acknowledgments. I have included an Index to secondary subjects, authors, editors, translators, significant titles and some non-commercial publishers at the end of the bibliography. I am not certain that this is working quite correctly yet, so use with some caution. Finally, I have set up a dedicated domain at https://alchemy-bibliography.co.uk. There will be a period of parallel running before I close this site down and move to the new one.
31 Dec 2006. I had hoped to complete incorporation of the first edition into this new one, but did not quite make it. A total of 10293 items, with 245 new entries. 1525 entries for items available online (although some of these may only be available through subscription services.
30 Nov 2006. Hit the 10,000 mark this month!! Now up to 10048 records. 1st edition conversion to 2835d - in the middle of the general Science group. I have made a major change to the classification scheme. I am in the process of putting all items relating to symbols and symbolism into a separate section (1P). As the study of symbolism is central to the study of alchemy, it made sense to highlight this area. It will also enable more precise classification of the various studies on symbolism. The new class numbers will appear in the subject index. This section is intended to include all studies of symbolism (e.g. 'the egg in alchemy', Arthurian symbolism, colour symbolism, 'the dragon of the alchemists'), as well as items relating to illustrations, emblem books etc.
31 Oct 2006. Now up to 9766 records, with conversion of the 1st edition to entry 2728 (just starting section on Freemasonry). 209 new records this month. One document from the Phil Trans is now on the Alchemy website - Experiments on May-dew.
30 Sep 2006. Now up to 9557 records, with conversion of the 1st edition up to entry 2591 (end of section on Mysticism). In collaboration with John Koopmans, I have transcribed a relatively unknown article on pseudo-Democritus from Chemical News 1890 (see bibliography at 1A(38) [DEM1]. This is now available on Adam McLean's web site at http://www.alchemywebsite.com/steele_democritus.html. I have also transcribed a slightly earlier item from Chemical News that reports on some of Berthelot's researches and am working on some items from the Phil Trans Royal Society. These should all be appearing on Adam's web site in the near future.
31 Aug 2006. Following a lengthy spell with out any updates, due to pressure of work and then retirement, I am intending to get back on track with regular updates. A total of 9227 records in this update: 340 new records and a total of 1301 online records. I am now into Section C (Subjects) of the 1st edition - record 2457. I have made a slight change to the classification system. Since there are so many articles on alchemy at 1J(005), I am trying to group these by the approach of the author. For example articles and short pieces on alchemy that appear in general books or encyclopedias on the occult will now appear at 1J(005)<133, writings by Theosophical authors at 1J(005)<299.934. The process of checking older material is not yet complete, so most material will still appear under the very general classification. The change is reflected in the subject index.
30 April 2005. A total of 8896 records this month (307 new records). I had to skip an update last month, due to pressure of the day job. Nothing major to report this month. Steady progress in transferring data from the first edition.
28 Feb 2006. A total of 8588 records in this update (277 new records). I have now completed transferring the Country sections from the first edition (up to item 1975). I am currently working on rationalising Arabic names and will be separating out the Latin pseudo-Geber from the Arabic works of Jabir ibn Hayyan. This is going to take a little while and will have to be fitted in with other work. For the moment all entries appear under 1A(53) [JAB] and 1E(53) [JAB]. New entries will appear in the subject index. Here is an interesting quote from a popular article on Jung "When Jung published his first major work on alchemy at the end of World War II, most reference books described this discipline as nothing more than a fraudulent and inefficient forerunner of modern chemistry. Today, more than forty-five years after Jung's death, alchemy is once again a respected subject of both academic and popular interest, and alchemical terminology is used with great frequency in textbooks of depth-psychology and other disciplines. It may be said without exaggeration that the contemporary status of alchemy owes its very existence to the writings of Carl G Jung" (V. Sundaram Master mariner of the ocean of human personality - III at http://newstodaynet.com/2006sud/06feb/1602ss1.htm )
31 Jan 2006. A total of 8311 records in this update (394 new records), including a total of 1160 records in the 'Online' page. I have got up to item 1827 from the 1st edition. Just Arabia and the USA to finish in the country section. I have made the online references in both the main bibliography and the Online pages into active links, so that the user can just click onto these (thanks to Rubellus Petrinus for this suggestion). There may be a few forms of material which I've missed, but will check these out shortly.
31 Dec 2005. A total of 7915 records in this update (242 new records). I have been attempting to smarten the navigation bars up slightly, and have included a major new page with this update. I have also made a few changes to the overall look of the bibliography by highlighting the authors' names (or the first word of the title, if no author) in bold.
In view of the importance of the Internet and having lurked in a number of alchemical groups where the question 'where can I get this text online' frequently seems to occur, I have created a new "Available online" page. This is an extract from the main bibliography and provides information on anything that was (when I looked at it) available online. This includes primary texts, journals and many other items. It is very incomplete as yet, but will grow each month. If you are looking for something specific, let me know and I will attempt to trace it. Subject, of course, to my overriding policy of the material being in English.
I should warn users though that links may not always be valid - the Internet being a very ephemeral system. If you find a broken link, then (a) please let me know, and (b) try using the Internet archive (the Waybackmachine) at http://www.archive.org/. Old material can often be found using this. If necessary (and subject to copyright considerations), I may well host 'vanished' material, or find someone who is willing to do this.
I am continuing to work through the Hermetic Journal and picking up on some other material as I come across it. As far as the first edition is concerned, I have completed France and Italy, and am up to item 1594 in the original numbering.
30 Nov 2005. A total of 7675 records in this update (275 new records). I have now completed coverage of the Alchemy Labs Bulletins and have started on the Hermetic Journal. In terms of the first edition, I have completed Germany, Czechoslovakia and Poland (up to item 1531).
31 Oct 2005. A total of 7400 records, with 366 new entries in the last month. I am well into the 'Germany' section of the 1st edition. As far as new material is concerned, I have been working through the Paracelsus Research Society's Alchemical Research Bulletins.
30 Sep 2005. A total of 7020 entries. 505 entries in the last 2 months. I skipped an update last month as I was trying to finish off taking material from the 'England' section of the 1st edition as well as some general tidying up. I have now completed the UK section, and have got to entry 1248 in that edition (out of 3188 numbered entries). I have completed the conversion of the old entries in the subject index.
31 Jul 2005. A total of 6516 entries - 419 new records this month. I am continuing the inclusion of material from the 1st edition and am now well into the 'England' section. I have included links to Amazon USA and Amazon UK, so that if anyone wants to purchase a book, they can link through and search for it. Eventually, I intend to provide links to individual books, but that will come much later. The small amount of commission that I receive from any books purchased will help to offset the cost of the site.
30 June 2005. Now a total of 6097 entries.
31 May 2005. I have finished including the primary texts section for the 1st edition and am now starting work on the 'Country' section. There is now a total of 5823 entries (123 new entries).
30 April 2005. I was not able to publish an update last month (end of March) as I had hard drive problems and had to get those sorted out and catch up on the day job, before getting back to the bibliography. The 'New this month' page therefore covers the two months of March and April. There is now a total of 5,700 entries with 465 being added in the past two months. I am still working through scanning the first edition and have very nearly finished all the primary texts.
28 Feb 2005. 288 new records added this month, for a total of 5,235. I have made a start in systematically scanning the 1st edition and entering the records in. I am up to item 263 (James Thompson in the 'English texts' section). I shall interleave this activity with collecting data from other sources. I have been carrying out some research on the life of Cockren and have transcribed some of his articles. They appear on Adam McLean's site and I'll put the links in next month.
31 Jan 2005. Didn't quite make the 5000 entries this month - only 4947.So 372 new records in the 'What's new this month. I have made some changes to the treatment of fiction All popular fiction that has alchemists as characters (and there is a surprising amount of it) has been reclassified to 'Fic' and now appears at the end of the sequence. More serious works of fiction and books or authors who have been the subject of studies are still within the Special topics section at 1N. This would include authors such as Lindsay Clarke. Finally non-alchemical authors who have been studied for alchemical themes appear at 7:8... This covers authors such as Joyce, Yeats etc. It is a somewhat arbitrary separation, I know, and I don't claim to have been totally consistent.
31 Dec 2004. 4575 records now on file. As the bibliography is getting large, I have created a new page this month "What's new this month". This will contain just those records that have been added each month. So, if you have downloaded the bibliography at any point, the "What's New" page will enable you to keep abreast with the topic or author of interest. This first time will contain the 354 records added in December. At the beginning of the page, I will highlight anything that I think is especially interesting. I have also added a copyright statement to the introductory page.
6 Dec 2004. 4222 records on file. Minor changes to the 'Using' page.
2 Nov 2004. 4025 records on file. I have created a more detailed page on using the bibliography which explains in more detail the layout and ways of finding information.
5 Oct 2004. 3690 records on file.
3 Sep 2004. 295 records added this month (3564 total). More RAM material added.
2 Aug 2004 Keeping on track with updates. 3343 records in this update. Still working on classification changes and copying records from the 1st edition. I have obtained some copies of RAMS publications on CD. Some of these are on now, but the rest will be added during this month.
1 July 2004. Finally managed to get an update organised. The number of records is now 3174. I have made substantial changes to the classification of the entries, although I am only part way through reclassifying the older entries. The bibliography is now arranged in 4 major sections:
1. Core studies on alchemy: primary texts (1A), studies by country and adepts by country (1E), General books and articles etc on alchemy (1J), Special topics (1N), e.g. distillation, symbolism, novels about alchemists, music, art, etc.
3. Closely related topics, e.g. Rosicrucians, Hermetica, Gnosticism, etc
5. Background topics. Magic, Astrology, development of science and chemistry
7. The influences on alchemy on everything else. The most interesting area of the bibliography in some ways! From psychology, through philosophy, mysticism, art. Masses on literature.
The revised subject index reflects these changes. It is still in two sections - new numbers & old numbers, with the latter gradually disappearing. Note that the same topic may appear under more than one main section (e.g. English fiction will appear under special topics, and under influences of alchemy on a specific author). Use the number ahead of the colon to identify which section.
3rd May 2004. No update this month, unfortunately. A mad rush of paid work in the day job has meant that the bibliography has had to be put to one side temporarily.
3rd April 2004. 2800 records in the bibliography with this monthly update. No major changes to the structure of the bibliography.
29th February 2004. As from 1st March, I shall be updating the bibliography monthly. I think this is a more realistic time scale, given my other commitments. In addition, I have split off the subject index to the classification into a separate page. I shall put other information relating to the classification scheme used in here. There are now around 2350 entries in the bibliography.
11th January 2004. I have decided that the section on texts was getting too cluttered, so have separated out actual alchemical texts by an author from discussions about aspects of an alchemical author. This will be a gradual process - so check in the subject index. Broadly, then, Class A refers to texts (arranged by country). Class B covers works about alchemy in a particular country and about alchemical authors (again by country). Class C will continue to cover general works on alchemy (C000) - although there is an argument for putting these at B000 ahead of individual countries; and then general subjects, including the influences of alchemy on individual subjects and authors. There are now 1800 entries in the bibliography.
14th December 2003. No major changes. 1452 items in this update.
6th December 2003. 1317 items in this update. I have converted the subject index to the classified sequence into a single column, rather than a two-column table. It is easier to maintain, and I think it will load quicker. Included in this update are a number of Internet materials, especially for the Sacred Texts web site, but also from ebrary. If you find information on the Internet - save it! Some recent studies have shown that the Internet is very ephemeral "In one recent study, one-fifth of the Internet addresses used in a Web-based high school science curriculum disappeared over 12 months. Another study, published in January, found that 40 percent to 50 percent of the URLs referenced in articles in two computing journals were inaccessible within four years"
28th November 2003. The section on general works about alchemy is going to get very large, so I am in the process of splitting this up into 3 sections: major books at C000-000, passing references in other books at C000-001, and journal articles C000-002. One especially interesting web site that I have found is www.ebrary.com . It is a collection of some 20,000 books, including alchemical and Hermetic ones. Unlike some sites viewing the books is free. You are only charged if you print anything out. A total of 1167 items in this update.
11th November 2003. All fiction is now classed at the general number 823, until such time as there is a study on a particular author or book. At this time, they author will be assigned their own class number.
8th November 2003. I have changed the classification (again!) and simplified the class marks. So material by John Dee will appear at A420 DEEJ (i.e. England, John Dee) and material about Dee at A420 DEEJ - 2. This ensures that material relating to Bacon appears together with primary material appearing first and secondary material after. Normally there will be three-letter codes after the class mark. A fourth letter will distinguish between, e.g. John Dee (DEEJ) AND Arthur Dee (DEEA). A similar approach is taken in other sections. Other references to Dee will be picked up via the alphabetical index which will appear shortly.
I have also reorganised the Subject Index that appears before the main sequence of the bibliography. I have made it more detailed and it should conform to chain indexing principles. Also please note the Acknowledgements section at the end of this page. I am very pleased to acknowledge any assistance.
2nd November 2003. The Literature section will need reclassifying shortly. Probably on the basis of form (poetry, drama) and country.
27th October 2003 I have firmed up my ideas on the classification of the references. The main sections A, B, C still remain, as does the first-level subdivision of A & B into countries. Within countries, though the entries will be arranged by author (adept) or text by means of the first 3 letters of the adepts name. Material about the adept will then appear afterwards by appending '-2' at the end of the class mark. For example material BY Roger Bacon will appear at A410 - UK -BAC. Material ABOUT Bacon will be classified at A410 - UK - BAC -2. If more than one person has the same 3-letter code, then they will be differentiated by an additional number, e.g. A410 - UK - VAU1 is Thomas Vaughan, VAU2 is Henry Vaughan.
I have added an alphabetical index to the classified sequence at the beginning of the bibliography, and will update this regularly, as I add new class marks.
Note though that not all entries have been reclassified to the new scheme as yet, this will occur over the next week or so.
As I am picking up so much material from the Internet, I am including much more extensive contents lists and descriptions to the Notes field
25th October 2003 This new edition of the bibliography is going to be very much an ongoing project and the arrangement etc is going to change over the period of its compilation - so come back to this page and check what is happening. I'll date any changes here after this initial note.
The main sequence of the bibliography will remain a classified sequence, with 3 main sections: A - Texts, B - Countries and C - Subjects. There will be other sections added, e.g. for Internet sites and for texts which I have managed to examine, but which have proved to be irrelevant (probably Z)
What I am going to do, though, is to bring together the texts themselves and the writings about them into Section A, so that B will consist only of general material on the country. Similarly with Section C - I will try to bring material together. Users of the original edition will remember that the basic arrangement within individual countries in A & B, and within individual subjects in C, was by author. The alphabetical index helped to bring material together, but a more detailed classified scheme would, I believe be more helpful. If users have any comments on this, please email me at and let me know. There will eventually be an alphabetical index to the classified sequence.
It is possible though, that things may change!
After a period of evaluation, I am using the Library Master package from Balboa Software. It seems to be able to compile a bibliography of this type more easily than any other product. I am still learning how to use it, and things like the layout of the individual entries and the compilation of the alphabetical index have still to be worked on. So, again, things will change.
I am (or will be) adding at the end of each entry in  an indication of the status of each item.
25th October 2003
Professor Karin Ryding for offprints and photcopies
Adam McLean for the loan of a set of Cauda Pavonis
Roberta Albrecht for offprints & photocopies.
Professor Vladimir Karpenko for offprints and photcopies.
Drs Peter Grund and Peter Forshaw for offprints of articles.
Everett Bleiler, who made useful comments on some of the entries and who pointed me towards his fascinating bibliography The guide to supernatural fiction (1983), now out of print. It is a fascinating read. His evaluative comments are especially interesting.
Dr Edward H. Thompson, Economics Department, Dundee University, Scotland, for information on his web site on Andreae, for the information on publications therein, and for helpful email discussions.
Joachim Schummer, editor of Hyle, for linking to the bibliography from the page http://www.hyle.org/service/biblio.htm
Adam McLean, for publicising the bibliography through his email list
Stan Linden for a photocopy of the contents list of early issues of Cauda Pavonis
Lawrence Principe for offprints.
Lyndy Abraham for a bibliography of her publications and of her husband (Michael Wilding)
The Director of the Hamdard Foundation (Pakistan) for a copy of the bibliography of the late Dr S. Mahdihassan.
Juan ) on the Yahoo group 'The-alchemist', who has supplied a number of missing items.
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