Culture and Cosmos is a peer-reviewed academic journal in the history of astrology and cultural astronomy published in association with the Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture, School of Archaeology, History and Anthropology, University of Wales Trinity Saint David

Vol 18 no 2 (Autumn/Winter 2014 will be published in July/August 2016. Vol. 19 (2015) will be a double issue featuring the proceedings of the 2013 Sophia Centre conference on Celestial Magic and is scheduled for publication in September/October 2016. Vol. 20 (2016) will be a double issue featuring the proceedings of the 2014 Sophia Centre conference on the Marriage of Heaven and Earth.


Volume 1, No. 1

Changes in Celestial Journey Literature, 1400-1650

Alan Weber

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Abstract

This study investigates an important historical phase in the curiously hybrid genre of the celestial journey narrative which has produced not only important scientific texts, such as Macrobius's Somnium Scipionis, but also some of Western Europe's finest poems, including Dante's Divine Comedy. I would like to compare Christine de Pizan's Chemin de Long Estude of 1403, which describes the author's celestial journey through the heavenly spheres, to another milestone in celestial voyage literature,
Francis Godwin's English work The Man in the Moone of 1638. These two literary and historical endpoints illustrate the changes in European technical astronomy which occurred between 1400 and 1650, and also reveal the shift which occurred in the very nature of the celestial voyage genre. I will also briefly review other closely related early modern celestial voyage narratives written by Johannes Kepler and Bishop John Wilkins.

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Dr. Frances Clynes, frances.clynes@sophia-project.net (University of Wales Trinity Saint David)



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