There was a time that the Bibliotheca Philosohica Hermetica seemed to go astray. Joost Ritman spend so much money on his life's passion that he went bankrupt. Nobody seemed willing to save his library, but recently the Bibliotheca reopened.Joost Ritman comes from a family of Rosicrucians. He began collecting rare old books when he was sixteen, but his enthusiasm was really fuelled when his mother gave him a copy of Aurora, a work by the German Protestant mystic Jacob Böhme (1575-1624). The work also fed his interest in Hermetic philosophy. In fifty years’ time he collected not only the essential works of Hermetism, but also related currents such as gnosis, theosophy, non-Western philosophy and kabbalah. The core of the collection, however, consists of the Corpus Hermeticum. Like Cosimo de’ Medici, Ritman commissioned a translation of the Corpus Hermeticum, in Dutch, in 1990.
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