London: Burns Oates, 1947. First edition. Octavo, original blue cloth, original dust jacket. Slight toning to spine, minor chipping with modest loss to price-clipped dust jacket. Very good indeed. Item #1030
"THE LONGING OF MAN'S HEART AFTER GOD" First British edition of this anthology of mystical thought—a varied treasury of Catholic spirituality illustrating the soul's ascent towards God. The title is taken from the frontispiece illustration of Teresa of Avila (after Velasquez), captioned: "I saw an Angel close by me...in his hand a long spear of gold." The frontispiece appears again on the front panel of the scarce dust jacket. A brief biography of H.A. Reinhold, printed on the rear flap of the dust jacket, notes that after he was expelled from Nazi Germany in 1935, Father Reinhold settled at New Hampshire's Portsmouth Priory as a writer and instructor. A short Introduction describes Reinhold's "attempt to sketch the outlines of mysticism acceptable to the Church," a careful distinction of Christian mysticism from the current "strange notions" of the supernatural. The anthology consists of five general sections: I. Thou Hast Made Us for Thee, II. All Things are But Loss, III. Apprehended by Jesus Christ, IV. The Cloud of Unknowing, Conclusion. Into Paradise, Acknowledgments and Index of Authors and Sources. First published in the United States during the Second World War (and dedicated to Jacques Maritain, a fellow wartime refugee), this British edition bears an Eric Gill title page vignette and the original Latin approbations, including the Imprimatur: "Franciscus J. Spellman / Archiepiscopus Neo Eboracensis / die ix Octobris 1944."