THE STARRY WISDOM LIBRARY: THE CATALOGUE OF THE GREATEST OCCULT BOOK AUCTION OF ALL TIME edited by Nate Pedersen. Hornsea, East Yorkshire, UK; PS Publishing: 2014. 1st edition hardcover.
THE CATALOGUE OF THE GREATEST OCCULT BOOK AUCTION OF ALL TIME edited by Nate Pedersen.
PUBLICATION DATE December 2014.
RARE BOOK CATALOGING Jonathan Kearns.
ILLUSTRATIONS Liv Rainey-Smith.
EDITIONS Jacketed hardcovers.
Scholars and book collectors across the country have long pondered the intended fate of the infamous collection of rare occult books left to rot in the Church of Starry Wisdom in Providence, Rhode Island, after the Starry Wisdom cult dispersed to parts unknown in the late 19th century.
The recent, shocking discovery of a previously unknown book auction catalogue issued in 1877 offers insight into the myriad mysteries of the cult. Entitled “Catalogue of the Occult Library of the Recently Disbanded Church of Starry Wisdom of Providence, Rhode Island,” and issued by the notorious Arkham firm Pent & Serenade, the catalogue reveals the long-suspected fact that the Church intended to sell its library to finance its removal from Providence.
The sale, of course, never materialized—as later events make obvious—but the book auction catalogue informs us of the cult’s
original intent and leaves for us an enormously valuable and fascinating piece of ephemera detailing the infamous collection of rare occult books in all of its dark and foreboding glory.
Furthermore, the book auction catalogue is unique amongst its contemporaries in that the auction firm Pent & Serenade—recognizing
the importance of the exceedingly rare volumes in the cult’s possession—commissioned a wide variety of 19th-century scholars to write essays on the histories of the books offered at auction.
As such, the catalogue is a uniquely—almost absurdly—valuable item for scholars and collectors around the world, and is presented here in exacting facsimile by PS Publishing.
Fine in fine dj.