The Real History of the Rosicrucians, by Arthur Edward Waite, , at sacred-texts.com
The Rosicrucians in England.
At this day the Rosie Crucians, that have been since Christ, say their fraternity inhabits the west of England, and they have likewise power to renew themselves and wax young again, as those did before the birth of Jesus Christ, as you may read in many books.
Dr F. saith, somewhere there is a castle in the west of England, in the earth and not on the earth, and there the Rosie Crucians dwell, guarded without walls, and possessing nothing they enjoy all things. In this castle are great riches, the halls fair and rich to behold, the chambers made and composed of white marble. At the end of the hall there is a chimney, whereof the two pillars that sustain the mantle tree are of fine jasper, the mantle is of rich calcedony and the lintel is made of fine emeralds trailed with a wing of fine gold, the grapes of fine silver. All the pillars in the hall are of red calcedoine, and the pavement is of fine amber.
The chambers are hanged with rich clothes, and the benches and bedsteads are all of white ivory, richly garnished with pretious stones; the beds are richly covered; there are ivory presses, whereon are all manner of birds cunningly wrought; and in these presses are gowns and robes of most fine gold, most rich mantles furred with sables, and all manner of costly garments.
And there is a vault, but it is bigger then that in Germany, which is as clear as though the sun in the midst of the day had entred in at ten windows, yet it is sevenscore steps underground. And there are ten servants of the Rosie Crucians, fair young men. C. B. reports this:--"When I first came to the Society, I saw a great oven with
two mouths, which did cast out great clearness, by which four young men made paste for bread, and two delivered the loaves to other two, and they sit them down upon a rich cloath of silk. Then the other two men took the loaves and delivered them unto one man by two loaves at once, and he did set them into the oven to bake. At the other mouth of the oven there was a man that drew out the white loaves and pasts, and before him was another young man that received them, and put them into baskets which were richly painted."
C. B. went into another chamber, eighty-one cubits from this, and the Rosie Crucians welcomed him. He found a table ready set and the cloth laid; there stood pots of silver and vessels of gold., bordered with precious stones and pearle, and basons and ewers of gold to wash their hands. Then we went to dinner. Of all manner of flesh, fowl, and fish, of all manner of meat in the world, there they had plenty, and pots of gold, garnished with precious stones, full of wine. This chamber was made of chrystal, and painted richly with gold and azure; upon the walls were written and engraven all things past, prevent, and to come, and all manner of golden medecines for the diseased. Upon the pavement was spread abroad roses, flowers, and herbs, sweet smelling above all savours in the world; and in this chamber were divers birds flying about and singing marvellous sweetly.
In this place have I a desire to live, if it were for no other reason but what the sophist sometimes applied to the mountains--Hos primum sol salutat, ultimosque deserit. Quis locum non amet, dies longiores habentem. But of this place I will not speak any more, lest readers should mistake me, so as to entertain a suspition that I am of this Order. 1
The medical and other recipes which are given on the authority of the Fraternity may be judged from the following specimens:--
The Rosie Crucians say pearl helpeth swoundings, and withstands the plague of poysons; and smarge and jacinth help the plague, and heale the wounds of venomous stings. The water of Nile makes the women of Egypt quick of conceite and fruitful: sometimes they bear seven children at a birth, and this is salt-peter-water. There is a wonderful vertue in the oyl of tobacco, in the tincture of saffron, in the flower of brimston, in quicksilver, in common salt; and coppress, molten and made a water, kills the poyson of the toadstool. Juyce of poppy and amber, which is no stone but a hard, clammy juyce, called bitumen, easeth the labour of women and the falling-sickness in children.
Now for mettals, if it be true, which all men grant, that precious stones show such power and vertue of healing, what shall the mixtures of all these mettals under a fortunate constellation, made in the conversion of their own planets, do. This mixture they call electrum, sigil, telesme, saying it will cure the cramp, benumming, palsie, falling-sickness, gout, leprosie, dropsie, if it be worn on the heart-finger. Others they make to cause beauty in ladies, &c.
A perfume of R. C. is compounded of the saphirick earth and the æther. If it be brought to its full exaltation, it will shine like the day-star in her fresh eastern glories. It hath a fascinating, attractive quality, for if you expose it to the open air, it will draw to it birds and beasts, and drive away evil spirits. Astrum Solis, or the R. C. mineral sun, is compounded of the æther, and a bloody, fiery-spirited earth; it appears in a gummy consistency, but with a fiery, hot, glowing complexion. It is substantially a certain
purple, animated, divine salt, and cureth all manner of venereal distempers, consumptions, and diseases of the mind.
We give another medecine, which is an azure or skie-coloured water, the tincture of it is light and bright, it reflects a most beautiful rainbow, and two drops of this water keeps a man healthy. In it lies a blood-red earth of great vertue.
In the pages that immediately follow, I shall reprint the stories, and allegories which are to be found in the works of John Heydon, and which have reference to the Rosicrucian Order. They may be permitted to speak for themselves. It is obvious that they are devoid of historical value, but they are all excessively curious, and the piece which I have entitled, "Voyage to the Land of the Rosicrucians," and which forms the general preface to "The Holy Guide," is an interesting romantic fiction.
338:1 This passage is stolen from Eugenius Philalethes. Cf. p. 313 of this history.