Atwood, Mary Ann (1817-1910)

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Atwood, Mary Ann (1817-1910)

Author of a remarkable book, A Suggestive Enquiry into the Hermetic Mystery, first published in 1850 under her maiden name, M. A. South, putting forward an early statement of the theory that the true goal of alchemy was spiritual perfection. Atwood subsequently regretted publication, fearing that she had revealed matters that should remain secret, and she therefore bought up as many copies of the book as possible and destroyed them. However, after her death, a new edition was brought out in 1918, from one of the few surviving copies. The new edition included Atwood memorabilia and an introduction by Walter Leslie Wilmshurst.

Sources:

Atwood, Mary Ann. A Suggestive Enquiry into the Hermetic Mystery. 1850. Reprint, New York: Arno Press, 1976.