We are always happy to find an informative book, and the mere title of this book promises as much information as we can safely handle at one sitting:
The Book of Miracles; or, celestial museum, being an entertaining and instructive treatise on love, law, trade, and physic with the Bank of Heaven, containing a never-failing method for ladies to obtain good husbands, and gentlemen good wives, with happiness and felicity after marriage; showing how to prevent all disappointments in love; and also all unhappy marriages; how a lady may become amiable, beautiful, lovely, and handsome in the sight of any man, by the rules of art; and how to protect and defend all injured females; apprehend all Thieves and Robbers; punish the Guilty, and defend the Innocent; and also, how to overcome your Adversary in any Lawsuit, (if in a just Cause;) prevent Poverty, Want, Bankruptcy, &c.; how to preserve and obtain success and prosperity with all your Cattle, both great and small; and also, in whatever you may hope, wish for, and desire, agreeable to the will of Heaven; to Heal the Sick and the Diseased in the most dangerous Cases, when, and where the best Medicines in the World, being given alone, would fail: The whole containing greater miracles, performed in all these various departments, than were ever known to be done before in this kingdom, within the memory of the oldest man living; all of which is well proved and substantiated, as hereinafter mentioned, from several curious examples, cases, and facts, delivered from the evidence of several remarkable post letters inserted herein; which are also now in possession of the author; forming the greatest and most useful curiosity, now in extant in the world; being the most valuable treasure that can ever be introduced into any family, at any time whatsoever; made plain and easy for the meanest capacity.
The book is by “Dr. Parkins.” Though it bears no date, the librarian dates it to 1817, which fits well with the heavy “modern” type. Strangely, Dr. Parkins seems not to have found an established bookseller willing to assume the risk of his book: it was “printed for, and sold by, the Author.”
The cost of this book was one shilling. But on the last page it is noted that
Any lady or gentleman may also be favoured with this curious and interesting Work, which is prepared and constantly sold here at our Office, in M. S. Price from Twenty to Thirty Guineas each Copy, entitled THE GRAND ORACLE OF HEAVEN, OR, The Art of Divine Magic; FROM THE URIM, THUMMIM, AND SANCTUM SANCTORUM, As it is regularly taught and constantly practised in Our Temple of Wisdom; unto which is added, The Grand Treasury of Divine Wisdom and Magic. Containing the most wonderful mysteries and secrets of the celestial regions, leading the way to know all things past, present, and to come; resolving all manner of questions by the angelic ministers of heaven, foretelling and predicting all future events and contingencies whatsoever; both by the use of a common slate and pencil, and also by a consecrated chrystal, shewing how their closets may be thus converted into a kind of Paradise, or Heaven Below; together with all the various theological and magical ceremonies, secrets, and mysteries, with Enoch’s Devotions, thereunto belonging; the whole containing the highest branches of learning ever known or practised since the creation of the world; shewing how to obtain health, prosperity, pleasure, happiness, and felicity, both in this world and also in that which is to come; and also how to obtain a union and communion with the angelic ministers of heaven at any time. The whole made plain and easy for the meanest capacity.
Did you notice the price? Twenty to thirty guineas, as Dr. Boli recalls, would have been about the annual earnings of a laborer in 1817. This information must be very valuable indeed—too valuable, doubtless, to entrust to the printer, which is why Dr. Parkins writes every copy out by hand, which in turn is why he warns his patrons,
N.B. Six Weeks must always be allowed for the execution of this said order, from the time that the same is first received at our office aforesaid.
We have not found the thirty-guinea manuscript anywhere on line; but you can have the one-shilling booklet gratis from our Eclectic Library. Look on the page of Magic and the Occult.