Jacob’s Rod, Translation from the French of a Rare and Curious Work, A. D. 1693, on the Art of Finding Springs, Mines, and Minerals by Means of the Hazel Rod. To Which is Appended Researches, with Proofs of the Existence of a More Certain and Far Higher Faculty, with Clear and Ample Instructions for Using It. Divining, T. W., Cheap Literature.

Jacob’s Rod, Translation from the French of a Rare and Curious Work, A. D. 1693, on the Art of Finding Springs, Mines, and Minerals by Means of the Hazel Rod. To Which is Appended Researches, with Proofs of the Existence of a More Certain and Far Higher Faculty, with Clear and Ample Instructions for Using It.

[N. p., but Reading, Penna.?]: Printed for the Trade, [ca. 1898-1900]. 8vo, original pictorial green wrappers, [1-4], [9]-99, [17] pages. Illus. Fold-out illustrated ad for the Spanish Magnetic Dip Needle (a scientific divining device) tipped in before the title page. Cheap paper toned but supple; some sunning, light soiling, a little edge wear; a good, sound copy of a fragile item. Item #17898

A later edition of a popular cheap pulp book on using the divining rod (with additional material on animal magnetism and mesmerism), the supposed translator’s initials signing the preface as T. W. Though the appeals to the profits of using this manual (and presumably the Spanish Magnetic Dip Needle device—essentially, a divining rod with a compass nailed to its far end) are here interlarded with a curious mixture of secret history and scientific appeal, the advertisements in the wrappers and the rear of the volume provide the real cultural cross-section of late 19th century preoccupations: society dances, teach yourself shorthand, Society’s Secret Sins (for men only!), The Curtain Lifted: Nature’s Revelations for Married Only (“forbidden knowledge”), Nature’s Secrets (“for women only”), and of course Albertius [sic] Magnus, the 6th and 7th Books of Moses, and the Long Lost Friend; one can also order “The Big Four”—Confessions of an Actress, The White Slave Girls of Chicago, Chicago by Nights, and Human Nature. (A number of the ads are for Diamond Publishing Co., of Reading, Penna.).

Price: $125.00

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