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Marinus, Life of Proclus (1925).  Translator's introduction


by his disciple


Following the Version of A. Ed. Chaignet,
Retranslated by

Kenneth Sylvan GUTHRIE
A.M. Harvard & Sewanee; Ph.D. Tulane and Columbia; M.D. Pennsylvania

(Copyright, 1925, by K. S. Guthrie) (International Copyright).

TEOCALLI, 1177 Warburton Avenue, YONKERS, N.Y.

This reissue of Proclus' works came about in a strange, Providential way, Mr Emil Verch was a California miner, with no classical education, but with a deep desire to know the truth, and with abstemious impulses, and desire for knowledge of the Invisible.

One day, much to his surprise, he heard a great oration, in an unknown tongue, by a sage who appeared to him, and who was demonstrating geometrical and symbolic figures. After his great surprise was over, he insisted on knowing the sage's name, and was told it was PROCLUS (this happened in a miner's cabin in California's mountain mining district, and later in the Delta Hotel in San Francisco).

As Mr Verch did not know anything about PROCLUS he went around asking about him, and ultimately, while working as engineer on a ship in New York Harbour, through the Marine Y.M.C.A, thanks to the enlightened liberality of Mr Beard who could appreciate mystic devotion even if in unfamiliar language, he came to me, and visited TEOCALLI, where I showed him what works of Proclus. I happened to have, and a list of his works.

Till then I had neglected Proclus, being absorbed in Plotinus, Numenius, Pythagoras. Indeed, the ebbing of the forces of my life seemed to preclude any new interests; but Mr Verch's insistence that I do something for PROCLUS led me to assent in principle. Encouraged by vague promises of assistance when I gave up my heart-breaking work at ALL SAINTS, during the 1924 Christmas vacation, I did my best to investigate anew a manifolding process, through which I have managed to get this much together, trusting to God to help.  [K.S.G.]

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This text was transcribed by Roger Pearse, Ipswich, UK, 2008. This file and all material on this page is in the public domain - copy freely.

Taken from Kenneth Sylvan Guthrie, Proclus' Biography, Hymns and Works.  Master Key Edition.  New York: Platonist Press (1925).  This volume is a collection of typescript texts, including many typing mistakes, with individual page numbers, reproduced by mimeograph copying.

Early Church Fathers - Additional Texts