This volume provides the first edition and systematic study of the Liber florum celestis doctrine by the Benedictine John of Morigny. Until recently this work was known only through a chronicle report of its burning at Paris in 1323, on the grounds that it revived a condemned ritual called the Ars notoria. However, it survives in three versions in more than twenty copies from across Europe. An intimate visionary collaboration between human and divine, the Liber florum will be of interest to all students of the middle ages, especially those interested in university learning, monasticism, liturgy, mysticism, visions, magic, and book history.
“The Liber florum is a remarkable discovery, and this painstaking edition lays the foundation for the study it so deserves. A magical-devotional text, condemned yet widely dispersed and used, it is dauntingly rich and complex, daringly inventive yet deeply grounded in several traditions. Arising from a hybrid late medieval monastic-scholastic environment, it weaves together visionary formulas with magical practices. The author, John of Morigny, was something of a tormented genius who left ample evidence of his own travails within his text. Claire Fanger and Nicholas Watson have carried out with remarkable success the task of establishing the text in its successive and fluid versions, then interpreting the work and tracing its influence.”
Richard Kieckhefer, Northwestern University