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John Dee

A sixteenth-century portrait by
an unknown artist.[1]
Born July 13, 1527(1527-07-13)
Tower Ward, London, England
Died 1608
Mortlake, Surrey, England
Residence England
Nationality English
Fields Mathematician and astronomer
Institutions Christ's College, Manchester, St John's College, Cambridge
Alma mater University of Cambridge
Louvain University
Doctoral advisor Gemma Frisius, Gerardus Mercator[2]
Doctoral students Thomas Digges[3]

John Dee (13 July 1527–1608 or 1609) was a noted mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, occultist, navigator, imperialist,[4] and consultant to Queen Elizabeth I of England. He devoted much of his life to the study of alchemy, divination, and Hermetic philosophy.

Dee straddled the worlds of science and magic just as they were becoming distinguishable. One of the most learned men of his age, he had been invited to lecture on advanced algebra at the University of Paris while still in his early twenties. Dee was an ardent promoter of mathematics and a respected astronomer, as well as a leading expert in navigation, having trained many of those who would conduct England's voyages of discovery. In one of several tracts which Dee wrote in the 1580s encouraging British exploratory expeditions in search of the Northwest Passage, he appears to have coined (or at least introduced into print) the term "British Empire."[5]

Simultaneously with these efforts, Dee immersed himself in the worlds of magic, astrology, and Hermetic philosophy. He devoted much time and effort in the last thirty years or so of his life to attempting to commune with angels in order to learn the universal language of creation and bring about the pre-apocalyptic unity of mankind. A student of the Renaissance Neo-Platonism of Marsilio Ficino, Dee did not draw distinctions between his mathematical research and his investigations into Hermetic magic, angel summoning and divination. Instead he considered all of his activities to constitute different facets of the same quest: the search for a transcendent understanding of the divine forms which underlie the visible world, which Dee called "pure verities".

Dee's high status as a scholar also allowed him to play a role in Elizabethan politics. He served as an occasional adviser and tutor to Elizabeth I and nurtured relationships with her ministers Francis Walsingham and William Cecil. Dee also tutored and enjoyed patronage relationships with Sir Philip Sidney, his uncle Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester, and Edward Dyer. He also enjoyed patronage from Sir Christopher Hatton.

In his lifetime Dee amassed the largest library in England and one of the largest in Europe.[6]

Contents

Biography

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Early life

Dee was born in Tower Ward, London, to a Welsh family, whose surname derived from the Welsh du ("black"). His father Roland was a mercer and minor courtier. Dee's family arrived in London in the wake of the Welshman Henry Tudor's coronation as Henry VII.[citation needed]

Dee attended the Chelmsford Catholic School from 1535 (now King Edward VI Grammar School (Chelmsford)), then – from November 1542 to 1546 – St. John's College, Cambridge.[7] His great abilities were recognized, and he was made a founding fellow of Trinity College, where the clever stage effects he produced for a production of Aristophanes' Peace procured him the reputation of being a magician that clung to him through life. In the late 1540s and early 1550s, he travelled in Europe, studying at Leuven (1548) and Brussels and lecturing in Paris on Euclid. He studied with Gemma Frisius and became a close friend of the cartographer Gerardus Mercator, returning to England with an important collection of mathematical and astronomical instruments. In 1552, he met Gerolamo Cardano in London: during their acquaintance they investigated a perpetual motion machine as well as a gem purported to have magical properties.[8]

Rector at Upton-upon-Severn from 1553, Dee was offered a readership in mathematics at Oxford in 1554, which he declined; he was occupied with writing and perhaps hoping for a better position at court.[9] In 1555, Dee became a member of the Worshipful Company of Mercers, as his father had, through the company's system of patrimony.[10]

That same year, 1555, he was arrested and charged with "calculating" for having cast horoscopes of Queen Mary and Princess Elizabeth; the charges were expanded to treason against Mary.[9][11] Dee appeared in the Star Chamber and exonerated himself, but was turned over to the Catholic Bishop Bonner for religious examination. His strong and lifelong penchant for secrecy perhaps worsening matters, this entire episode was only the most dramatic in a series of attacks and slanders that would dog Dee throughout his life. Clearing his name yet again, he soon became a close associate of Bonner.[9]

Dee presented Queen Mary with a visionary plan for the preservation of old books, manuscripts and records and the founding of a national library, in 1556, but his proposal was not taken up.[9] Instead, he expanded his personal library at his house in Mortlake, tirelessly acquiring books and manuscripts in England and on the European Continent. Dee's library, a center of learning outside the universities, became the greatest in England and attracted many scholars.[12]

When Elizabeth took the throne in 1558, Dee became her trusted advisor on astrological and scientific matters, choosing Elizabeth's coronation date himself.[13][14] From the 1550s through the 1570s, he served as an advisor to England's voyages of discovery, providing technical assistance in navigation and ideological backing in the creation of a "British Empire", a term that he was the first to use.[15] Dee wrote a letter to William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley in October 1574 seeking patronage. He claimed to have occult knowledge of treasure on the Welsh Marches, and of ancient valuable manuscripts kept at Wigmore Castle, knowing that the Lord Treasurer's ancestors came from this area.[16] In 1577, Dee published General and Rare Memorials pertayning to the Perfect Arte of Navigation, a work that set out his vision of a maritime empire and asserted English territorial claims on the New World. Dee was acquainted with Humphrey Gilbert and was close to Sir Philip Sidney and his circle.[15]

Dee's glyph, whose meaning he explained in Monas Hieroglyphica.

In 1564, Dee wrote the Hermetic work Monas Hieroglyphica ("The Hieroglyphic Monad"), an exhaustive Cabalistic interpretation of a glyph of his own design, meant to express the mystical unity of all creation. He travelled to Hungary to present a copy personally to Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor. This work was highly valued by many of Dee's contemporaries, but the loss of the secret oral tradition of Dee's milieu makes the work difficult to interpret today.[17]

He published a "Mathematical Preface" to Henry Billingsley's English translation of Euclid's Elements in 1570, arguing the central importance of mathematics and outlining mathematics' influence on the other arts and sciences.[18] Intended for an audience outside the universities, it proved to be Dee's most widely influential and frequently reprinted work.[19]

British Imperialist

From 1570 Dee advocated a policy of political and economic strengthening of England and imperial expansion into the New World.[4] In his manuscript, Brytannicae reipublicae synopsis (1570), he outlined the current state of the Elizabethan Realm [20] and was concerned with trade, ethics, and national strength.[4]

His 1576 General and rare memorials pertayning to the Perfect Arte of Navigation, was the first volume in an unfinished series planned to advocate the rise of imperial expansion.[21] In the highly symbolic frontispiece, Dee included a figure of Britannia kneeling by the shore beseeching Elizabeth I, to protect her empire by strengthening her navy.[22] Dee used Geoffrey's inclusion of Ireland in Arthur's imperial conquests to argue that Arthur had established a ‘British empire’ abroad.[23] He further argued that England exploit new lands through colonization and this vision could become reality through maritime supremacy.[24][25] In making these arguments, Dee is credited with the earliest use in English of the terms Brytish Iles and Brytish Impire.[26]

Dee posited a formal claim to North America on the back of a map drawn in 1577–80;[27] he noted Circa 1494 Mr Robert Thorn his father, and Mr Eliot of Bristow, discovered Newfound Land. [28] In his Title Royal of 1580, he invented the claim that Madog ab Owain Gwynedd had discovered America with Dee intending to prove that England's claim to the New World was stronger than that of Spain.[29]

Later life

By the early 1580s, Dee was growing dissatisfied with his progress in learning the secrets of nature and with his own lack of influence and recognition. He began to turn towards the supernatural as a means to acquire knowledge. Specifically, he sought to contact angels through the use of a "scryer" or crystal-gazer, who would act as an intermediary between Dee and the angels.[30]

John Dee and Edward Kelley evoking a spirit.

Dee's first attempts were not satisfactory, but, in 1582, he met Edward Kelley (then going under the name of Edward Talbot), who impressed him greatly with his abilities.[31] Dee took Kelley into his service and began to devote all his energies to his supernatural pursuits.[31] These "spiritual conferences" or "actions" were conducted with an air of intense Christian piety, always after periods of purification, prayer and fasting.[31] Dee was convinced of the benefits they could bring to mankind. (The character of Kelley is harder to assess: some have concluded that he acted with complete cynicism, but delusion or self-deception are not out of the question.[32] Kelley's "output" is remarkable for its sheer mass, its intricacy and its vividness.) Dee maintained that the angels laboriously dictated several books to him this way, some in a special angelic or Enochian language.[33][34]

In 1583, Dee met the visiting Polish nobleman Albert Łaski, who invited Dee to accompany him on his return to Poland.[11] With some prompting by the angels, Dee was persuaded to go. Dee, Kelley, and their families left for the Continent in September 1583, but Łaski proved to be bankrupt and out of favour in his own country.[35] Dee and Kelley began a nomadic life in Central Europe, but they continued their spiritual conferences, which Dee recorded meticulously.[33][34] He had audiences with Emperor Rudolf II and King Stephen of Poland in attempted to convince them of the importance of his angelic communications. Particularly interesting was his meeting with the Polish King Stephan. The event happened at the royal castle at Niepołomice (near Kraków, then the capital of Poland) and was later widely analyzed by Polish historians (Ryszard Zieliński, Roman Żelewski, Roman Bugaj) and writers (Waldemar Łysiak). While generally they accepted him as being a man of wide and deep knowledge they also pointed out at his connections with the English monarch Elisabeth. This prompted them to the conclusion that the meeting could have same hidden political goals. Nevertheless, the Polish King - being a devout catholic - was very cautious of any supernatural media, started the meeting with a statement that all prophetic revelations were finalized with the mission of Jesus Christ. He also stressed that he would take part in the event provided that there is nothing against the teaching of the Holly Catholic Church.

During a spiritual conference in Bohemia, in 1587, Kelley told Dee that the angel Uriel had ordered that the two men should share their wives. Kelley, who by that time was becoming a prominent alchemist and was much more sought-after than Dee, may have wished to use this as a way to end the spiritual conferences.[35] The order caused Dee great anguish, but he did not doubt its genuineness and apparently allowed it to go forward, but broke off the conferences immediately afterwards and did not see Kelley again. Dee returned to England in 1589.[35][36]

Final years

Dee returned to Mortlake after six years to find his library ruined and many of his prized books and instruments stolen.[12][35] He sought support from Elizabeth, who finally made him Warden of Christ's College, Manchester, in 1592. This former College of Priests had been re-established as a Protestant institution by a Royal Charter of 1578.[37]

However, he could not exert much control over the Fellows, who despised or cheated him.[9] Early in his tenure, he was consulted on the demonic possession of seven children, but took little interest in the matter, although he did allow those involved to consult his still extensive library.[9]

He left Manchester in 1605 to return to London.[38] By that time, Elizabeth was dead, and James I, unsympathetic to anything related to the supernatural, provided no help. Dee spent his final years in poverty at Mortlake, forced to sell off various of his possessions to support himself and his daughter, Katherine, who cared for him until the end.[38] He died in Mortlake late in 1608 or early 1609 aged 82 (there are no extant records of the exact date as both the parish registers and Dee's gravestone are missing).[9][39]

Personal life

Dee was married twice and had eight children. Details of his first marriage are sketchy, but is likely to have been from 1565 to his wife's death in around 1576. From 1577 to 1601 Dee kept a meticulous diary.[10] In 1578 he married the twenty-three year old Jane Fromond (Dee was fifty-one at the time). She was to be the wife that Kelley claimed Uriel had demanded that he and Dee share, and although Dee complied for a while this eventually caused the two men to part company.[10] Jane died during the plague in Manchester and was buried in March 1604[40], along with a number of his children: Theodore is known to have died in Manchester, but although no records exist for his daughters Madinia, Frances and Margaret after this time, Dee had by this time ceased keeping his diary.[9] His eldest son was Arthur Dee, about whom Dee wrote a letter to his headmaster at Westminster School which echoes the worries of boarding school parents in every century; Arthur was also an alchemist and hermetic author.[9] The antiquary John Aubrey[41] gives the following description of Dee: "He was tall and slender. He wore a gown like an artist's gown, with hanging sleeves, and a slit.... A very fair, clear sanguine complexion... a long beard as white as milk. A very handsome man."[39]

Achievements

Thought

Dee was an intensely pious Christian, but his Christianity was deeply influenced by the Hermetic and Platonic-Pythagorean doctrines that were pervasive in the Renaissance.[42] He believed that number was the basis of all things and the key to knowledge, that God's creation was an act of numbering.[13] From Hermeticism, he drew the belief that man had the potential for divine power, and he believed this divine power could be exercised through mathematics. His cabalistic angel magic (which was heavily numerological) and his work on practical mathematics (navigation, for example) were simply the exalted and mundane ends of the same spectrum, not the antithetical activities many would see them as today.[19] His ultimate goal was to help bring forth a unified world religion through the healing of the breach of the Catholic and Protestant churches and the recapture of the pure theology of the ancients.[13]

Reputation and significance

About ten years after Dee's death, the antiquarian Robert Cotton purchased land around Dee's house and began digging in search of papers and artifacts. He discovered several manuscripts, mainly records of Dee's angelic communications. Cotton's son gave these manuscripts to the scholar Méric Casaubon, who published them in 1659, together with a long introduction critical of their author, as A True & Faithful Relation of What passed for many Yeers between Dr. John Dee (A Mathematician of Great Fame in Q. Eliz. and King James their Reignes) and some spirits.[33] As the first public revelation of Dee's spiritual conferences, the book was extremely popular and sold quickly. Casaubon, who believed in the reality of spirits, argued in his introduction that Dee was acting as the unwitting tool of evil spirits when he believed he was communicating with angels. This book is largely responsible for the image, prevalent for the following two and a half centuries, of Dee as a dupe and deluded fanatic.[42]

Around the same time the True and Faithful Relation was published, members of the Rosicrucian movement claimed Dee as one of their number.[43] There is doubt, however, that an organized Rosicrucian movement existed during Dee's lifetime, and no evidence that he ever belonged to any secret fraternity.[31] Dee's reputation as a magician and the vivid story of his association with Edward Kelley have made him a seemingly irresistible figure to fabulists, writers of horror stories and latter-day magicians. The accretion of false and often fanciful information about Dee often obscures the facts of his life, remarkable as they are in themselves.[44]

A re-evaluation of Dee's character and significance came in the 20th century, largely as a result of the work of the historian Frances Yates, who brought a new focus on the role of magic in the Renaissance and the development of modern science. As a result of this re-evaluation, Dee is now viewed as a serious scholar and appreciated as one of the most learned men of his day.[42][45]

His personal library at Mortlake was the largest in the country, and was considered one of the finest in Europe, perhaps second only to that of de Thou. As well as being an astrological and scientific advisor to Elizabeth and her court, he was an early advocate of the colonization of North America and a visionary of a British Empire stretching across the North Atlantic.[15] The term "British Empire" is in fact Dee's own invention.

Dee promoted the sciences of navigation and cartography. He studied closely with Gerardus Mercator, and he owned an important collection of maps, globes and astronomical instruments. He developed new instruments as well as special navigational techniques for use in polar regions. Dee served as an advisor to the English voyages of discovery, and personally selected pilots and trained them in navigation.[9][15]

He believed that mathematics (which he understood mystically) was central to the progress of human learning. The centrality of mathematics to Dee's vision makes him to that extent more modern than Francis Bacon, though some scholars believe Bacon purposely downplayed mathematics in the anti-occult atmosphere of the reign of James I.[46] It should be noted, though, that Dee's understanding of the role of mathematics is radically different from our contemporary view.[19][44][47]

Dee's promotion of mathematics outside the universities was an enduring practical achievement. His "Mathematical Preface" to Euclid was meant to promote the study and application of mathematics by those without a university education, and was very popular and influential among the "mecanicians": the new and growing class of technical craftsmen and artisans. Dee's preface included demonstrations of mathematical principles that readers could perform themselves.[19]

Dee was a friend of Tycho Brahe and was familiar with the work of Copernicus.[9] Many of his astronomical calculations were based on Copernican assumptions, but he never openly espoused the heliocentric theory. Dee applied Copernican theory to the problem of calendar reform. His sound recommendations were not accepted, however, for political reasons.[13]

He has often been associated with the Voynich Manuscript.[31][48] Wilfrid M. Voynich, who bought the manuscript in 1912, suggested that Dee may have owned the manuscript and sold it to Rudolph II. Dee's contacts with Rudolph were far less extensive than had previously been thought, however, and Dee's diaries show no evidence of the sale. Dee was, however, known to have possessed a copy of the Book of Soyga, another enciphered book.[49]

At Elizabeth I's request Dee embraced the old Welsh 'Prince Madog' myth to lay claim to North America. The well known story was of a young Welsh prince who discovered America in 1170, over three hundred years before Christopher Columbus's voyage in 1492. The fact was that Elizabeth I had little interest in the New World and Dee's hopes were premature.[50]

Artifacts

The "Seal of God"

The British Museum holds several items once owned by Dee and associated with the spiritual conferences:

  • Dee's Speculum or Mirror (an obsidian Aztec cult object in the shape of a hand-mirror, brought to Europe in the late 1520s), which was once owned by Horace Walpole.
  • The small wax seals used to support the legs of Dee's "table of practice" (the table at which the scrying was performed).
  • The large, elaborately-decorated wax "Seal of God", used to support the "shew-stone", the crystal ball used for scrying.
  • A gold amulet engraved with a representation of one of Kelley's visions.
  • A crystal globe, six centimetres in diameter. This item remained unnoticed for many years in the mineral collection; possibly the one owned by Dee, but the provenance of this object is less certain than that of the others.[51]

In December 2004, both a shew stone (a stone used for scrying) formerly belonging to Dee and a mid-1600s explanation of its use written by Nicholas Culpeper were stolen from the Science Museum in London; they were recovered shortly afterwards.[52]

Dee in popular culture

  • Dee was a popular figure in literary works written by his own contemporaries, and he has continued to feature in popular culture ever since, particularly in fiction or fantasy set during his lifetime or that deals with magic or the occult.
  • Edmund Spenser may refer to Dee in The Faerie Queen (1596).[53]
  • William Shakespeare may have modeled the character of Prospero in The Tempest (1610–11) on Dee.[31]
  • Ben Jonson may have used Dee as the basis for the character of Subtle in his play The Alchemist (1610), which includes a scrying session during which the spirits render up Dee's name.
  • The Anglo-Irish Gothic novelist Charles Maturin refers to Dee and Kelley in his novel Melmoth the Wanderer (1820).
  • Dee and Kelley appear together in Manchester in Harrison Ainsworth's novel Guy Fawkes (1841), in which they exhume the body of Elizabeth Ortyn, and show Fawkes a vision of his coming tribulations.
  • John Dee is a one of main characters in Gustav Meyrink's novel The Angel of the West Window (1927). Kelley appears there too.
  • H. P. Lovecraft's short story The Dunwich Horror (1929) credits John Dee with translating the Necronomicon into English.
  • Luis Fernando Verrisimo's "Borges and the Eternal Organutans" discusses extensively Dee's time at the court of Rudolf II in Prague, making books fly off the shelves to random pages with the power of his mind.
  • In Dorothy Dunnett's novel The Ringed Castle (1971), Dee is depicted as a mathematician and astrologer who aids then-princess Elizabeth (later Elizabeth I) in her various intrigues.
  • Dee appears as a character in Derek Jarman's Jubilee (1977), played by Richard O'Brien.
  • In Michael Moorcock's novel Gloriana, or The Unfill'd Queen (1978), Dee is the only character drawn from actual history in an alternate history that reimagines the realm of Queen Elizabeth I as that of Queen Gloriana I of Albion, Empress of Asia and Virginia.
  • John Crowley's four-novel sequence Ægypt (1987–2007) includes John Dee, Edward Kelley, and Giordano Bruno as major characters.
  • In the liner notes of Imaginos, a concept album by Blue Öyster Cult (1988), John Dee is preported to be the spirital advisor to Queen Elizabeth I. He is alleged to have used a mirror made by the Aztecs out of obsidian to help bring about the destruction of Spanish sea-power, securing England's dominance over world affairs for the next 150 years.
  • In Umberto Eco's novel Foucault's Pendulum (1988), Dee is a central character in "The Plan" (the overall conspiracy that the book is concerned with) and in a fiction concerning it created by Belbo, one of the main characters.
  • Dee is a minor but important character in The Armor of Light, a counterfactual novel set in the courts of Elizabeth I and James VI by Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett (1988).
  • Dee is a main character in Peter Ackroyd's novel The House of Doctor Dee (1993), which focuses on a young historian who forms a psychic link with Dee after inheriting his London house.
  • Dee is mentioned frequently in Philippa Gregory's book The Queen's Fool (1995)
  • In Michael Chabon's novel Wonder Boys (1995), Dr. Dee is the name of the dog belonging to the chancellor.
  • Dee is mentioned as Queen Elizabeth I's magician in the novel The Devil and His Boy by Anthony Horowitz(1998).
  • Armin Shimerman and Michael Scott fictionalize Dee's life in the Merchant Prince series of juvenile books (2000–03) by providing a basis in science fiction for Dee's supposed magic.
  • Dee is a major character in Robin Jarvis's novel Deathscent (2001).
  • Lisa Goldstein's novel The Alchemist's Door (2002) features Dee as the main character, with his associate Edward Kelley appearing as a villain.
  • Dee makes a small appearance as a hidden boss in the video game Wild Arms 3 (2002).
  • In "John Dee, Jenny Everywhere, Round One" (2003), Woody Evans has Dr. Dee in conflict with Jenny Everywhere in an occult techno dance hall.
  • Dee is a major character in Diana Redmond's time-travel children's book Joshua Cross & the Queen's Conjuror (2004).
  • Dee figures as the father of the character Ella in the Sky One TV series, Hex (2004–05).
  • Dee's legacy plays a prominent role in Elizabeth Redfern's novel Auriel Rising (2005).
  • Dee is a character in the Doctor Who audio drama A Storm of Angels (2005).
  • Dee plays a brief but prominent role in Alan Moore's syndicated graphic novel Promethea, where he resides in the third sephirot, Binah, of a hermetic interpretation of Kabbalah, guiding the central character on her way towards Kether (2005)
  • Dee, known as The Walker, is the main antagonist of Charlie Fletcher's children's novel Stoneheart (2006) and its sequels Ironhand (2008) and Silvertongue (to be published in 2009).
  • Dee appears as a character in Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007) alongside Cate Blanchett's Elizabeth I.
  • Dee is one of the main antagonists of Michael Scott's six-volume fantasy series The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, including The Alchemyst (2007) and The Magician (2008) He is trying to obtain the Book of Abraham that is currently held by Nicholas Flamel so he can help his Dark Elder masters return to rule Earth.
  • Dee plays an intricate role in author Titania Hardie's book The Rose Labyrinth. He's the joining piece of the clues that the characters discover throughout the journey of the book (2008).
  • Dee is a character in Marie Rutkoski's The Kronos Chronicles, Book 1: The Cabinet of Wonders (2008).
  • Ella Marsh Chase features Dee as a character in her book The Virgin Queen's Daughter (2008).
  • Dee is a character in Karen Harper's series of mystery novels set in Elizabeth I's court.
  • John Dee is the central character in the 2009 historical novel Virgin and the Crab, by Robert Parry.
  • John Dee was a central character in Mary Hoopers "At the House of the Magician " (2007)
  • John Dee appears as a central character in Victor Gischler's "Vampire a Go-Go" (Sept 2009).
  • John Dee appeared as Dr. Destiny and was quoted in Neil Gaiman's multi-awarded graphic novel The Sandman.
  • John Dee appears as a character in Adam Black's web comic "Locus"
  • John Dee is a 5th Generation Tremere Elder in the card game Vampire: The Eternal Struggle.
  • John Dee, his book and his connection with the Rabbi Judah Loew was mentioned in Sergeanne Golon's sensational historical Angélique series - Angélique in Quebec.
  • John Dee appears as a semi-central character in J L Carrell's "The Shakespeare Curse" (UK title) "Haunt me still" (US title) along with his son, Arthur Dee, and Edward Kelley. Also mentioned are his efforts with scrying, his manuscripts/ diary and his Shew stone.
  • John Dee figures in The King of Shreds and Patches, Jimmy Maher's Interactive Fiction written in the tradition of H.P.Lovecraft and set in Elizabethan England.

Notes

  1. ^ According to Charlotte Fell Smith, this portrait was painted when Dee was 67. It belonged to his grandson Rowland Dee and later to Elias Ashmole, who left it to Oxford University.
  2. ^ Mathematics Genealogy Project
  3. ^ British Society for the History of Mathematics
  4. ^ a b c R. Julian Roberts, ‘Dee, John (1527–1609)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, May 2006
  5. ^ Canny, p. 62
  6. ^ According to scholars Frances Yates and Peter French.
  7. ^ Dee, John in Venn, J. & J. A., Alumni Cantabrigienses, Cambridge University Press, 10 vols, 1922–1958.
  8. ^ Gerolamo Cardano (trans. by Jean Stoner) (2002). De Vita Propria (The Book of My Life). New York: New York Review of Books. viii. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Fell Smith, Charlotte (1909). John Dee: 1527–1608. London: Constable and Company. http://www.johndee.org/charlotte/. 
  10. ^ a b cJulian Roberts, ed (2005). "A John Dee Chronology, 1509–1609". RENAISSANCE MAN: The Reconstructed Libraries of European Scholars: 1450–1700 Series One: The Books and Manuscripts of John Dee, 1527–1608. Adam Matthew Publications. http://ampltd.tcuk.com/digital_guides/ren_man_series1_prt1/chronology.aspx. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  11. ^ a b "Mortlake". The Environs of London: County of Surrey 1: 364–88. 1792. http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?compid=45385. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  12. ^ a b "Books owned by John Dee". St. John's College, Cambridge. http://www.joh.cam.ac.uk/library/special_collections/early_books/pix/provenance/dee/dee.htm. Retrieved 26 October 2006. 
  13. ^ a b c d Dr. Robert Poole (2005-09-06). "John Dee and the English Calendar: Science, Religion and Empire". Institute of Historical Research. http://www.history.ac.uk/eseminars/sem2.html. Retrieved 26 October 2006. 
  14. ^ Szönyi, György E. (2004). "John Dee and Early Modern Occult Philosophy". Literature Compass 1 (1): 1–12. 
  15. ^ a b c d Ken MacMillan (2001-04). "Discourse on history, geography, and law: John Dee and the limits of the British empire, 1576–80" (). Canadian Journal of History. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3686/is_200104/ai_n8932217. 
  16. ^ John Strype, Annals of the Reformation, Oxford (1824), vol.ii, part ii, no. XLV, 558-563
  17. ^ Forshaw, Peter J. (2005). "The Early Alchemical Reception of John Dee's Monas Hieroglyphica". Ambix (Maney Publishing) 52 (3): 247–269. doi:10.1179/000269805X77772. 
  18. ^"John Dee (1527–1608): Alchemy — the Beginnings of Chemistry" (PDF). Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester. 2005. http://www.msim.org.uk/uploadedDocs/Document_Depository_01/John%20Dee.pdf. Retrieved 26 October 2006. 
  19. ^ a b c d Stephen Johnston (1995). "The identity of the mathematical practitioner in 16th-century England". Museum of the History of Science, Oxford. http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/staff/saj/texts/mathematicus.htm. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  20. ^ William Howard Sherman John Dee: The Politics of Reading and Writing in the English Renaissance, Univ of Massachusetts Press, 1997 ISBN 1558490701
  21. ^ Frances Amelia Yates Astraea
  22. ^ Virginia Hewitt, ‘Britannia (fl. 1st–21st cent.)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004
  23. ^ O. J. Padel, ‘Arthur (supp. fl. in or before 6th cent.)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004
  24. ^ National Maritime Museum, Imperial ambition
  25. ^ 1577 J. DEE Arte Navigation 65 OED Online Retrieved 1 April 2009
  26. ^ OED Draft Revision Sept. 2008: British Isles, n.;
  27. ^ R. C. D. Baldwin, ‘Thorne, Robert, the elder (c.1460–1519)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004
  28. ^ :(BL, Cotton Augustus 1.I.i)
  29. ^ J. E. Lloyd, ‘Madog ab Owain Gwynedd (supp. fl. 1170)’, rev. J. Gwynfor Jones, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004
  30. ^ Frank Klaassen (2002-08). "John Dee's Conversations with Angels: Cabala, Alchemy, and the End of Nature". Canadian Journal of History. 
  31. ^ a b c d e f Calder, I.R.F. (1952). "John Dee Studied as an English Neo-Platonist". University of London. http://www.johndee.org/calder/html/TOC.html. Retrieved 26 October 2006. 
  32. ^ "Dee, John". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 2006. http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9029722/John-Dee. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  33. ^ a b c Meric Casaubon (1659 Republished by Magickal Childe (1992)). A True & Faithful Relation of What passed for many Yeers between Dr. John Dee (A Mathematician of Great Fame in Q. Eliz. and King James their Reignes) and some spirits. New York: Magickal Childe Pub.. ISBN 0-939708-01-9. 
  34. ^ a b Dee, John. Quinti Libri Mysteriorum. British Library. 
  35. ^ a b c d Mackay, Charles (1852). "4". Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. London: Office of the National Illustrated Library. http://www.econlib.org/LIBRARY/Mackay/macEx4b.html. 
  36. ^ "History of the Alchemy Guild". International Alchemy Guild. http://www.alchemyguild.org/history.htm. Retrieved 26 October 2006.  (subscription required)
  37. ^ "John Dee". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th Ed. ed.). London: Cambridge University Press. 1911. 
  38. ^ a b Fell Smith, Charlotte (1909). John Dee: 1527–1608: Appendix 1. London: Constable and Company. http://www.johndee.org/charlotte/Appendix1/ap1.html. 
  39. ^ a b John Aubrey (1898). Rev. Andrew Clark. ed. Brief Lives chiefly of Contemporaries set down John Aubrey between the Years 1669 and 1696. Clarendon Press. http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Obits2/Dee_Aubrey.html. 
  40. ^ Manchester Cathedral Archive, MS 1
  41. ^ Aubrey's great-grandfather William Aubrey was a cousin of Dee's "and intimate acquaintance".
  42. ^ a b c Walter I. Trattner (January 1964). "God and Expansion in Elizabethan England: John Dee, 1527–1583". Journal of the History of Ideas 25 (1): 17–34. doi:10.2307/2708083. 
  43. ^ Ron Heisler (1992). "John Dee and the Secret Societies". The Hermetic Journal. http://www.levity.com/alchemy/h_dee.html. 
  44. ^ a b Katherine Neal (1999). "The Rhetoric of Utility: Avoiding Occult Associations For Mathematics Through Profitability and Pleasure" (PDF). University of Sydney. http://www.shpltd.co.uk/neal-rhetoric.pdf. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  45. ^ Frances A. Yates (1987). Theatre of the World. London: Routledge. p. 7. 
  46. ^ Brian Vickers (1992-07). "Francis Bacon and the Progress of Knowledge". Journal of the History of Ideas 53 (3): 495–518. doi:10.2307/2709891. 
  47. ^ Stephen Johnston (1995). "Like father, like son? John Dee, Thomas Digges and the identity of the mathematician". Museum of the History of Science, Oxford. http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/staff/saj/texts/dee-digges.htm. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  48. ^ Gordon Rugg (2004-07). "The Mystery of the Voynich Manuscript". Scientific American. http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa006&articleID=0000E3AA-70E1-10CF-AD1983414B7F0000&pageNumber=4&catID=2. Retrieved 28 October 2006. 
  49. ^ Jim Reeds (1996). "John Dee and the Magic Tables in the Book of Soyga" (PDF). http://www.dtc.umn.edu/~reedsj/soyga.pdf. Retrieved 8 November 2006. 
  50. ^ Robert W. Barone is Professor of History at the University of Montevallo
  51. ^ "BSHM Gazetteer — LONDON: British Museum, British Library and Science Museum". British Society for the History of Mathematics. 2002-08. http://www.dcs.warwick.ac.uk/bshm/zingaz/London2.html. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  52. ^ Adam Fresco (2004-12-11). "Museum thief spirits away old crystal ball". London: The Times. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-1398477,00.html. Retrieved 27 October 2006. 
  53. ^ Woolley, Benjamin The Queen's Conjuror: The Science and Magic of Dr. John Dee, Adviser to Queen Elizabeth I. New York: Henry Holt and Company (2001)

References

Primary Sources

  • Dee, John Quinti Libri Mysteriorum. British Library, MS Sloane Collection 3188. Also available in a fair copy by Elias Ashmole, MS Sloane 3677.
  • Dee, John John Dee's five books of mystery: original sourcebook of Enochian magic: from the collected works known as Mysteriorum libri quinque edited by Joseph H. Peterson, Boston: Weiser Books ISBN 1-57863-178-5.
  • Dee, John The Mathematicall Praeface to the Elements of Geometrie of Euclid of Megara (1570). New York: Science History Publications (1975) ISBN 0-88202-020-X
  • Dee, John John Dee on Astronomy: Propaedeumata Aphoristica (1558 & 1568) edited by Wayne Shumaker, Berkley: University of California Press ISBN 0-520-03376-0

Secondary Sources

  • Cajori, Florian A History of Mathematical Notations New York: Cosimo (2007) ISBN 1602066841
  • Calder, I.R.F. John Dee Studied as an English Neo-Platonist Ph.D. Dissertation, London: The Warburg Institute, London University (1952) Available online
  • Canny, Nicholas (2001). The Origins of Empire, The Oxford History of the British Empire Volume I. Oxford University Press (1998). ISBN 0199246769. http://books.google.com/books?id=eQHSivGzEEMC. 
  • Casaubon, M. A True and Faithful Relation of What Passed for many Yeers Between Dr. John Dee... (1659) repr. "Magickal Childe" ISBN 0-939708-01-9 New York 1992)
  • Clucas, Stephen, ed. John Dee: Interdisciplinary Studies in Renaissance Thought. Dordrecht: Springer (2006) ISBN 1402042450
  • Clucas, Stephen, ed. John Dee's Monas Hieroglyphica. Ambix Special Issue. Vol. 52, Part 3, 2005, includes articles by Clulee, Norrgren, Forshaw and Bayer.
  • Clulee, Nicholas H. John Dee's Natural Philosophy: Between Science and Religion. London: Routledge (1988) ISBN 0-415-00625-2
  • Fell Smith, Charlotte John Dee: 1527–1608. London: Constable and Company (1909) Available online.
  • French, Peter J. John Dee: The World of an Elizabethan Magus. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul (1972) ISBN 0-7102-0385-3
  • Kugler, Martin Astronomy in Elizabethan England, 1558 to 1585: John Dee, Thomas Digges, and Giordano Bruno. Montpellier: Université Paul Valéry (1982)
  • (French) Mandosio, Jean-Marc D'or et de sable (chapitre IV. Magie et mathématiques chez John Dee, pp. 143–170), Paris, éditions de l'Encyclopédie des Nuisances, (2008) ISBN 2910386260
  • Sherman, William Howard John Dee: The Politics of Reading and Writing in the English Renaissance Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press (1995) ISBN 1558490701
  • Vickers, Brian ed. Occult & Scientific Mentalities in the Renaissance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (1984) ISBN 0-521-25879-0
  • Woolley, Benjamin The Queen's Conjuror: The Science and Magic of Dr. John Dee, Adviser to Queen Elizabeth I. New York: Henry Holt and Company (2001)
  • Yates, Frances The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age London: Routledge (2001) ISBN 0415254094
  • Yates, Frances "Renaissance Philosophers in Elizabethan England: John Dee and Giordano Bruno." in her Lull & Bruno. Collected Essays Vol. I. London: Routledge & Kegan (1982) ISBN 0710009526

External links


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