Did you know The Da Vinci Code‘s Dan Brown has a love for obscure religious and occult books and artifacts? Hey, me neither, but considering the author just donated €300,000 to Amsterdam’s Ritman Library, also known as the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica House of Living Books, it’s safe to say he does.
The generous donation will allow the Ritman to digitize thousands of “pre-1900 texts on alchemy, astrology, magic, and theosophy,” reported Thu-Huong Ha, including the Corpus Hermeticum (1472), Giordano Bruno’s Spaccio de la bestia trionfante (1584), and “the first printed version of the tree of life: a graphic representation of the sefirot, the ten virtues of God according to the Kabbalah (1516).
The Ritman has called Brown “a great admirer of the library”. The author visited the library on multiple occasions while writing his novels The Lost Symbol and Inferno, and now he’s giving back. “Some 3,500 ancient books” will soon be available in an online archive called “Hermetically Open”.
Check out this trailer for an upcoming documentary about the Ritman, which was founded by Joost R. Ritman in 1984. The library holds over 20,000 volumes covering mysticism, spirituality, religion, alchemy, Gnosticism, and thanks to Dan Brown, a large portion of the collection will soon be available online!
Featured Image Via the King Baudouin Foundation.