Keywords: “new philosophy”, magic, Francis Bacon, Giordano Bruno, Christopher Marlowe’s The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus, William Shakespeare’s The Tempest
Abstract: In Europe of the early Modern period new scientific knowledge and new scientific practices were perceived by contemporaries as “unusual”, “wonderful”, and “mysterious”, and often aroused suspicion. The reputations of alchemists, kabbalists, and mathematicians were the most dubious, since the representation of knowledge in a non-canonical symbolic system and the difficulty in gaining access to it gave rise, according to Francis Bacon, to speculation and fantasy. Magical practices often provoked accusations of heresy and of connections with evil spirits, demons, etc., as can be seen in the legends about Albert the Great, Roger Bacon, Raymond Lully, Faust, Paracelsus, John Dee, Judah Loew ben Bezalel and others. Scientists of a new type sought to discover the “secrets of nature” and named themselves not only humanists and natural philosophers, but also virtuosos, artists, and magicians. A diverse intellectual discursive environment emerged, one in which different types of magic, philosophy, and theological doctrines were actively developed through polemics. There were several classifications of magic, depending on the area of its application. Thus, Giordano Bruno in his treatise De magia identifies several types and subtypes of magic: natural (physical), medico-alchemical, mathematical (or occult), metaphysical (or theurgy), necromancy, pythian, prophetic, destructive or malicious, etc. These various types of magic also found reflection in literature.
Acknowledgements: The article was prepared within the framework of the project “Christopher Marlowe and His Literary Heritage in Russian and World Culture: An Interdisciplinary Look” with financial support from the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (grant No. 18-012-00679).