Stephen of Alexandria

At the court of the emperor Heraclius, the philosopher Stephen of Alexandria (or Stephanos of Alexandria) delivered a series of nine lectures on alchemical subjects.  Translations of three of these were published in early issues of Ambix, a scholarly journal dedicated to early chemistry, before WW2.  I found a first draft of a translation of the fourth among the papers of the translator, in the Oxford Museum of Science in Broad Street.  Unfortunately the handwriting was beyond me, being on a technical subject unfamiliar to myself.

I had an email this morning from someone who reckons that he might be able to do better.  I’ve emailed him the PDF of the scans and my opening shot at transcription.

There was a further reason why I did not proceed; the material in Ambix is all in copyright, so cannot go online.  Nor can this translation, without the permission of the family.  I don’t place online material owned by others.  So what could I do with it?  Yet… why all these restrictions?  Is there a single person in the world other than myself who even knows who Stephen is?


2 thoughts on “Stephen of Alexandria

  1. Yes I know who Stephen of Alexandria is. I have been trying to track down a book/manuscript [maybe called Hygromanteia, but likely to have had a different title] on magic that he took with him when in travelled from Alexandria to Constantinople in about 607 AD to work with/for Heraclius, the Emperor.

  2. How very interesting. Please do say some more! How do you come to know about him? And what is your source for this information?

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