Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism

Purchase Access
Subject: Religious Studies

Edited by: Wouter J. Hanegraaff, in collaboration with Antoine Faivre, Roelof van den Broek and Jean-Pierre Brach

Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online is the comprehensive reference work to cover the entire domain of “Gnosis and Western Esotericism” from the period of Late Antiquity to the present. Containing around 400 articles by over 180 international specialists, Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online provides critical overviews discussing the nature and historical development of all its important currents and manifestations, from Gnosticism and Hermetism to Astrology, Alchemy and Magic, from the Hermetic Tradition of the Renaissance to Rosicrucianism and Christian Theosophy, and from Freemasonry and Illuminism to 19thcentury Occultism and the contemporary New Age movement. Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online also contains articles about the life and work of all the major personalities in the history of Gnosis and Western Esotericism, discussing their ideas, significance, and historical influence.

Subscriptions: see brill.com

Waite, Arthur Edward

(1,286 words)

Author(s): Gilbert, Robert A.
Waite, Arthur Edward, * 2 Jan 1857 (Brooklyn, N.Y.), † 19 May 1942 (Bridge, Canterbury (England)) Writing as an apologist and critical historian of his subject matter, Waite was the author, editor or translator of more than eighty works on → alchemy, → Freemasonry, kabbalah [→ Jewish Influences], → magic, → mysticism, → Rosicrucianism and other aspects of western esotericism. Through a series of translations of → Eliphas Lévi's major works on magic he effectively introduced Lévi to the English-speaking world, w…

Weigel, Valentin

(683 words)

Author(s): Weeks, Andrew
Weigel, Valentin, * 1533 (Grossenhain (Saxony)), † 12 Jun 1588 (Zschopau (Saxony)) Lutheran pastor and author of writings of a critical, theoretical, theological, and devotional character. The son of commoner parents, Weigel depended upon princely patronage to attend an elite Latin school and subsequently studied theology at the Universities of Leipzig and Wittenberg, possibly also teaching briefly at the latter. In 1567 Weigel was ordained as a pastor, a position he held in the Saxon city of Zschopau from …

Welling, Georg von

(1,949 words)

Author(s): Faivre, Antoine
Welling, Georg von, * Summer 1655 (Kassel), † 28 Feb 1727 (Bockenheim) Before the publication of Petra Jungmayr's dissertation on von Welling in 1990, almost nothing was known about his life. He occasionally presented himself as Baron von Welling, but whether he was actually granted this title cannot be confirmed. He served as captain in the army (1683-1685) and participated in the defense of Vienna against the Turks. The following years he seems to have spent as a riding master (Hofjunker). From 1705 until…

Westcott, William Wynn

(1,366 words)

Author(s): Pasi, Marco
Westcott, William Wynn, * 17 Jan 1848 (Leamington), † 30 Jul 1925 (Durban) One of the most prominent British occultists of his time, Westcott wrote many essays on a wide range of esoteric topics such as arithmology [→ Number Symbolism] ( Numbers: Their Occult Powers and Mystic Virtues, 1890), → alchemy ( The Science of Alchymy, 1893), → astrology ( The Origin and History of Astrology, 1902), Jewish Kabbalah [→ Jewish Influences V] ( An Introduction to the Study of the Kabbalah, 1910); and edited English versions of ancient and modern esoteric texts (such as the Sepher Yetzirah, 1887, or → E…