From Theatrum Paracelsicum
Dedications, Prefaces, Postfaces
- Dedication, 9 April 1574, Leonhard Thurneisser to Julius, Herzog zu Braunschweig und Lüneburg; German (Source: BP155)
- In defending Paracelsus, the Thurneisser draws comparisons to the prophets of old, whose words were not immediately understood but came to be seen as true over time. Similarly, the cures that Paracelsus performed lend credibility to his writings. The author also criticizes the detractors for their own shortcomings and narrow perspectives, noting that those who attribute Paracelsus's success to the devil are displaying a lack of faith. He concludes by urging critics to consider Paracelsus's work in the broader context of historical medical knowledge and to recognize the spiritual dimensions of his work. Thurneisser asserts that his work will be protected from criticism and ridicule thanks to the authority of a Prince he holds in high regard. He views this Prince as a patron of the arts, and thus dedicates his work to him. The author emphasizes the virtue of leaving behind an indomitable spirit for future generations to admire, while showing compassion towards his critics, whom he views as misguided. He challenges his critics to display their own knowledge and expertise, as renowned intellectuals of the past have done. He imagines that their contributions could be so great that even Kings and Princes would aspire to be like them. Thurneisser goes on to discuss the three books he has written, each dealing with different subjects, and expresses his intention to limit their distribution to prevent misuse by deceitful individuals. He is confident that he is safe from unauthorized reproduction of his work, and plans to gift a number of his books to the Prince, who may then distribute them to worthy individuals.