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Astrology and Religion Among the Greeks and Romans, by Franz Cumont, [1912], at

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The American Lectures on the History of Religions are delivered under the auspices of the American Committee for Lectures on the History of Religions. This Committee was organised in 1892, for the purpose of instituting "popular courses in the History of Religions, somewhat after the style of the Hibbert Lectures in England, to be delivered by the best scholars of Europe and this country, in various cities, such as Baltimore, Boston, Brooklyn, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, and others."

The terms of association under which the Committee exists are as follows:

1.--The object of this Association shall be to provide courses of lectures on the history of religions, to be delivered in various cities.

2.--The Association shall be composed of delegates from the institutions agreeing to co-operate, with such additional members as may be chosen by these delegates.

3.--These delegates--one from each institution, with the additional members selected--shall constitute themselves a Council under the name of the "American Committee for Lectures on the History of Religions."

4.--The Council shall elect out of its number a Chairman, a Secretary, and a Treasurer.

5.--All matters of local detail shall be left to the co-operating institution under whose auspices the lectures are to be delivered.

6.--A course of lectures on some religion, or phase of religion, from an historical point of view, or on a subject germane to the study of religions, shall be delivered annually, or at such intervals as may be found practicable, in the different cities represented by this Association.

7.--The Council (a) shall be charged with the selection of the lecturers, (b) shall have charge of the funds, (c) shall assign vii

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the time for the lectures in each city, and perform such other functions as may be necessary.

8.--Polemical subjects, as well as polemics in the treatment of subjects, shall be positively excluded.

9.--The lectures shall be delivered in the various cities between the months of September and June.

10.--The copyright of the lectures shall be the property of the Association.

11.--The compensation of the lecturer shall be fixed in each case by the Council.

12.--The lecturer shall be paid in instalments after each course, until he shall have received half of the entire compensation. Of the remaining half, one half shall be paid to him upon delivery of the manuscript, properly prepared for the press, and the second half on the publication of the volume, less a deduction for corrections made by the author in the proofs.

The Committee as now constituted is as follows:

Prof. Crawford H. Toy, Chairman, 7 Lowell St., Cambridge, Mass.; Rev. Dr. John P. Peters, Treasurer, 227 W. 99th St., New York City; Prof. Morris Jastrow, Jr., Secretary, 248 S. 23rd St., Philadelphia, Pa.; President Francis Brown, Union Theological Seminary, New York City; Prof. Richard Gottheil, Columbia University, New York City; Prof. Robert F. Harper, University of Chicago, Chicago, Ill.; Prof. Paul Haupt, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md.; Prof. F. W. Hooper, Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences; Prof. E. W. Hopkins, Yale University, New Haven, Conn.; Prof. Edward Knox Mitchell, Hartford Theological Seminary, Hartford, Conn.; President F. K. Sanders, Washburn College, Topeka, Kan.; Prof. H. P. Smith, Meadville Theological Seminary, Meadville, Pa.

The lecturers in the course of American Lectures on the History of Religions and the titles of their volumes are as follows:

1894-1895--Prof. T. W. Rhys-Davids, Ph.D.--Buddhism.

1896-1897--Prof. Daniel G. Brinton, M.D., LL.D.--Religions of Primitive Peoples.

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1897-1898--Rev. Prof. T. K. Cheyne, D.D. Jewish Religious Life after the Exile.

1898-1899--Prof. Karl Budde, D.D.--Religion of Israel to the Exile.

1904-1905--Prof. George Steindorff, Ph.D.--The Religion of the Ancient Egyptians.

1905-1906--Prof. George W. Knox, D.D., LL.D.--The Development of Religion in Japan.

1906-1907--Prof. Maurice Bloomfield, Ph.D., LL.D.--The Religion of the Veda.

1907-1908--Prof. A. V. W. Jackson, Ph.D., LL.D.--The Religion of Persia. 1

1909-1910--Prof. Morris Jastrow, Jr., Ph.D.--Aspects of Religious Belief and Practice in Babylonia and Assyria.

1910-1911--Prof. J. J. M. DeGroot.--The Development of Religion in China.

The lecturer for 1911-1912 was Prof. Franz Cumont of Brussels, recognised as the leading authority on Greek Astrology and Mithraism. From 1892 until his resignation in 1910, Prof. Cumont held the Chair of Roman Institutions at the University of Ghent. Since 1899, he has been Curator of the Royal Museums of Antiquities at Brussels. Prof. Cumont's great work on the Mithra Cult was published in 1894-1900, and is the standard work on that subject. This was followed by a smaller summary, Les Mystères de Mithra, of which an English translation, under the title "Mysteries of Mithra," was published in 1903. A series of lectures delivered at the College de France on Les Religions Orientales dans le Paganisme Romain 

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[paragraph continues] (Paris, 1907; 2nd ed. 1910) has also appeared in an English garb (Oriental Religions in Roman Paganism. Chicago, 1911).

In 1900 and again in 1907, Prof. Cumont conducted archeological explorations in Asia Minor and in Northern Syria, the results of which were embodied in his Studia Pontica (Brussels, 1906) and in a volume of Greek and Latin inscriptions published in 1911.

In 1898, in collaboration with several scholars, M. Cumont undertook a catalogue, with detailed descriptions and copious extracts, of all Greek astrological codices (Catalogus Codicum Astrologorum Graecorum), of which monumental work, up to the present, ten volumes have appeared. A Bibliography of Prof. Cumont's writings, including numerous articles contributed by him to archeological, historical, and philosophical journals of various countries, was published in 1908 by the Royal Academy of Belgium, of which body M. Cumont has been a member since 1902. He is also a corresponding member of the Institute de France and of the Academies of Berlin, Göttingen, and Munich.

The lectures contained in this volume are a summary in a popular form of extensive researches carried on by Prof. Cumont for many years. They were delivered before the following institutions: The Lowell Institute, Hartford Theological Seminary, Johns Hopkins University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Chicago, Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences, Meadville Theological Seminary, and Columbia University.

C. H. Toy,
Committee on Publication

December, 1911



ix:1 This course was not published by the Committee, but will form part of Prof. Jackson's volume on the Religion of Persia in the series of "Handbooks on the History of Religions," edited by Prof. Morris Jastrow, Jr., and published by Messrs. Ginn & Company of Boston. Prof. Jastrow's volume is, therefore, the eighth in the series. Prof. De Groot's lectures have not yet been published, but will appear in 1912. Prof. Cumont's volume is, therefore, the ninth in the series.

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