Over the last few days, as is my wont, I bought some used books. Some came from a book stall at the fair that happened this past weekend in my neighbourhood, others from charity shops.
Here are the history-relevant recent purchases:
I read Ray Page’s book ages ago, and although I’m sure it’s out of date now, hey, it was £1 and it will be handy to look some things up for someone who is not a runes guy. And I gueess I do tutor the impact of Empire part of the history GCSE, so a big illustrated book about it could come in handy.
I have no earthly use for a collection of engravings from 17th-century alchemical texts. But it was £1 and they’re so cool.
This … is the kind of thinking that has led me to own a lot of texts relating to esotericism and the occult.
Well, I say “lots.” It’s obviously not “lots” by the standards of someone who actually studies the subject, but I’m not that. And insofar as I care about magical and supernatural beliefs — and I do — the things I care least about are alchemy and sort of 18th-19th century ritual magic. And yet I do keep acquiring books about them.
Partly it’s because there are a lot of books out there on the topic, and partly, I think, it’s because they look so cool. I can’t pass them up!
I suppose it does provide lots of material and cool set-dressing for other creative endeavours, but I do worry that people will get the impression that I’m some kind of genuinely knowledgeable occulty type, when I’m just a sort of aesthetic dabbler.