Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism

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Subject: Religious Studies

Edited by: Wouter J. Hanegraaff, in collaboration with Antoine Faivre, Roelof van den Broek and Jean-Pierre Brach

Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online is the comprehensive reference work to cover the entire domain of “Gnosis and Western Esotericism” from the period of Late Antiquity to the present. Containing around 400 articles by over 180 international specialists, Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online provides critical overviews discussing the nature and historical development of all its important currents and manifestations, from Gnosticism and Hermetism to Astrology, Alchemy and Magic, from the Hermetic Tradition of the Renaissance to Rosicrucianism and Christian Theosophy, and from Freemasonry and Illuminism to 19thcentury Occultism and the contemporary New Age movement. Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online also contains articles about the life and work of all the major personalities in the history of Gnosis and Western Esotericism, discussing their ideas, significance, and historical influence.

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Dante Alighieri

(2,695 words)

Author(s): Pinchard, Bruno
Alighieri, Dante, * 1265 (Florence), † 1321 (Ravenna) Exceptional poet and political figure involved in the dispute between the Guelphs and the Ghibellines, Dante took part in the Dolce stil novo movement alongside Guido Cavalcanti (ca. 1255-1300) and declared on several occasions that his poetic message addressed the mysterious → “ Fedeli d'amore ” (for ex. Vita nuova, III, 12). It is unknown whether these formed an ideal community of learned and loving poets or designated a secret society of an initiatory vocation. The characteristic of the work of …

Davis, Andrew Jackson

(1,405 words)

Author(s): Lucas, Phillip Charles
Davis, Andrew Jackson, * 11 Aug 1826 (Blooming Grove, New York), † 13 Jan 1910 (Watertown, Massachusetts) Writer, clairvoyant, physician, lecturer, reformer, and forerunner of → New Age spirituality, Davis can rightfully be called the major theologian and philosopher of 19th-century → Spiritualism in the United States. Although most of our information concerning his early life comes from an autobiography whose veracity is questionable, it is likely that he grew up in humble circumstances in rural New York state …

Dee, John

(6,283 words)

Author(s): Szőnyi, György E.
Dee, John, * 13 Jul 1527 (London), † 26 Mar 1609 (Mortlake) Humanist, mathematician, geographer, antiquarian, astrologer to Queen Elizabeth I. A cultural traveller on the Continent, including East-Central Europe. One of the most intriguing representatives of occult philosophy [→ occult/occultism] in the late-Renaissance period. 1. Biography: From Humanism to Magic Dee was born into a well-to-do textile merchant family which traced its origins to the nobility of Wales. From his father he inherited the intense ambition to fashion himself as a gent…

Deunov, Peter Konstantinov

(959 words)

Author(s): Introvigne, Massimo
Deunov, Peter Konstantinov, * 11 Jul 1864 (Hadurcha (presently Nikolaevka) (Bulgaria)), † 27 Jan 1944 (Izgreva (Bulgaria)) Deunov was born in a rural Bulgarian village in 1864, and went on to attend the American School of Theology and Science, run by American missionaries in the Danubian city of Svishtov. In 1888 he went to the United States, where he took courses at several Bible colleges and universities, including Boston University. He also became acquainted with several Theosophical and Rosicrucian bodies. In 1895, Deunov returned to the Bulgarian city of Varna, where i…