• Memoirs of Swedenborg

    And Other Documents

    By Carl Robsahm and Emanuel Swedenborg
    Translated by R.L. Tafel
    Edited by Stephen McNeilly
    Foreword by Anders Hallengren

    Written in 1782, Memoirs of Swedenborg by Carl Robsahm is without doubt the most compelling eyewitness account of Emanuel Swedenborg to be published in any language. Drawing on reminiscences from his own long-standing friendship with and years as a neighbor to Swedenborg, Robsahm offers a fascinating picture of the Swedish philosopher and mystic as a man of gentleness and integrity. Rich in detail and generosity, this memoir is a classic in its own right and a primary resource for all subsequent biographies. Read more

    Hardcover and e-book, 162 pages


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Description

Written in 1782, Memoirs of Swedenborg by Carl Robsahm is without doubt the most compelling eyewitness account of Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772) to be published in any language. Drawing on reminiscences from his own long-standing friendship with and years as a neighbor to Swedenborg, Robsahm offers a fascinating picture of the Swedish philosopher and mystic as a man of gentleness and integrity.

Rich in detail and generosity, this memoir is a classic in its own right and a primary resource for all subsequent biographies. This edition has been selected and edited by Stephen McNeilly featuring revised translations, an introduction, and annotations by the renowned Swedish scholar Anders Hallengren. It also contains eight other historical documents concerning Swedenborg’s day-to-day life, three of which are from the hand of Swedenborg himself.

The volume includes:

  • “Memoirs of Swedenborg” by Carl Robsahm
  • “Reply to a Letter from a Friend” by Emanuel Swedenborg
  • “A Truthful Account of the Late Queen Dowager at Haga in 1774” by Anders von Hopken
  • Extract from the Proceedings of the Exegetic and Philanthropic Society in Stockholm
  • “Memoranda in the Notebook of 1747–48” by Emanuel Swedenborg
  • “Description of the Late Assessor, Mr. Emanuel Swedenborg’s Estate at Södermalm”
  • “A List of Valuables of 1770” by Emanuel Swedenborg
  • “A Visit to Swedenborg’s Home” by Carl Christoffer Gjörwell
  • Testimony by Christian de Tuxen

Each document is accompanied by its own individual contextual introduction and annotations by Anders Hallengren. Also included in the volume are a general foreword and introduction by Anders Hallengren, a chronology of Swedenborg’s life and works, and an index.

About the Author

Carl Robsahm (1735–94) was a close friend and neighbor of Emanuel Swedenborg who worked as a well-respected official in Sweden’s central bank, rising to Commissioner Plenipotentiary in 1786. Robsahm was a founder of the Exegetic and Philanthropic Society created in Sweden in 1786 to translate and distribute Swedenborg’s works.

Anders Hallengren is a Swedish author, scholar, foreign affairs journalist, translator and composer. He has held distinguished positions at Stockholm University and Harvard University, lecturing all around the world on diverse aspects of literature, music, and history. Hallengren has published many books in English, including his study on Emerson, The Code of Concord and a collection of essays, Gallery of Mirrors. He is internationally renowned for his Nobel essay, “Nelson Mandela and the Rainbow of Culture.” In collaboration with the artist Madlen Herrström a volume of Anders’ poems was recently published as Pentagram and, as part of Ophir, Hallengren received a nomination for the Manifest Music award in 2012 for the album Opus Operatum.

Stephen McNeilly is the director of the Swedenborg Society and series editor of the Journal of the Swedenborg Society and the Swedenborg Archiveimprint. For the Society he has published numerous volumes, including An Angel Speaks with Homero Aridjis and J. M. G. Le Clézio; Philosophy, Literature, Mysticism: An Anthology of Essays with Czeslaw Milosz et al.; Swimming to Heaven: the Lost Rivers of London with Iain Sinclair; Blake’s London: The Topographic Sublime with Iain Sinclair; and Several Clouds Colliding with Brian Catling and Iain Sinclair. He is also a visiting lecturer in art, philosophy and critical theory at several universities in the United Kingdom.

Reviews

“A crucial text for obtaining knowledge of Swedenborg.”

—José Antonio Antón Pacheco

Established in 1810, the main aim of the Swedenborg Society is to translate and publish the works of Emanuel Swedenborg. The Society was incorporated in 1925 and has since become a registered educational charity. Housed in a historic building in central London, they sell not only their own books but Swedenborg-related titles from other publishers, as well as offering a reference and lending library.

The Swedenborg Foundation offers a selection of the Swedenborg Society’s most popular titles, including the Journal of the Swedenborg Society, each volume of which consists of a collection of articles about Swedenborg’s influence from some of the leading international scholars.

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