Chicago: Open Court Publishing Company, 1909. Original navy cloth gilt (6 1/4 inches tall), top edge gilt. Tiny dated pencil inscription to rear endpaper. Fine. Item #1028
"IF NEITHER LOVE NOR PAIN / WILL EVER TOUCH THY HEART / THEN ONLY GOD'S IN THEE / AND THEE IN GOD THOU ART"
Open Court bi-lingual edition of Johannes Scheffler's Angelus Silesius—a fine copy of these mystical epigrams in the original extra-gilt binding.
Johannes Scheffler, perhaps best-known for the Cherubic Wanderer, was a seventeenth century Protestant convert who "joined the Church that, by the mystical glamor of its historical traditions and ritual, was most sympathetic to him." Translated by Paul Carus and printed with the German metered originals, these quatrains (numbered 1-174 in the contents) are divided into several main sections: I. The Mystery of God, II. Eternity and Time, III. God in His Works, IV. God's Creatures, V. Ownhood, Otherhood, Godhood, VI. The Imitation of Christ, VII. Death. The text is ruled in red throughout and illustrated with a frontispiece. Open Court Publishing editions were intended to provide a forum for the spiritual understanding of a wide variety of the world's religious and philosophical thought. Carus, the Open Court editor, provides a lengthy Introduction declaring that Silesius has "wrongly been suspected of pantheism and quietism." The introduction is illustrated with two contemporary caricatures of Silesius who, Carus tells us, "places love higher than knowledge and science, for through love only we gain an immediate admission into God's presence." Laid-in at the rear is an early handwritten letter presenting Angelus Silesius but disparaging the quality of the translation ("the translator has sacrificed too much to fit the mere rhyme"). A bright, fresh copy.