Philadelphia: David McKay, 1914.
First American Edition, 1st Printing. Hardcover. This foundational history of magic from its early origins to the occult revival of the 19th century is the work of one of the most important and influential esotericists of the era, Éliphas Lévi Zahed, born Alphonse Louis Constant (1810–1875). Aleister Crowley believed himself to be the reincarnation of Lévi. This era- and subject-spanning study of magic touches on alchemy, the magic of the Magi, Zoroaster, Heremetic magic, Kabalism, Gnosticism, Freemasonry, and more, illustrated throughout in frontispiece and 19 plates. This is an exceptionally nice copy of the first American edition of 1914, which states no date of publication, only "Printed in England" on copyright page, with no other printings indicated.
9 1/8" X 6 1/4". xxxvi, 536pp. Presents handsomely in protective archival jacket. Bound in purple cloth over boards, with upper board and spine lettered and ruled in gilt and decorative border including hexagrams in gilt to upper board. Mild wear to binding, with rubbing to extremities, bumping to head and tail of spine, scattered rubbing to rear, and sunning to spine. Top edge gilt. Binding is firm and sound. Very occasional pencilled mark to pages, else clean and unmarked. Illustrated throughout in tissue-guarded frontispiece and 19 plates. A highly presentable first American printing of this foundational history of magic. Very good. Item #10764