Essai metaphysique, physique et phisiologistique relativement à la découverte de M. Mesmer, 1786

Mss.134.B83

Date: 1786 | Size: 1 Volumes, 1 volume, 250 p.

Digital objects note

This collection contains digital materials that are available in the APS Digital Library. Links to these materials are provided with context in the inventory of this finding aid. A general listing of digital objects may also be found here.

Collection Information

Physical description

1 volume, 250 p.

Provenance

Purchased from Heller for $95.00 and accessioned, 07/28/1971 (1971 936ms).

Early American History Note

This is a handwritten essay on Franz Mesmer and his claims to have healing and other metaphysical powers. Mesmer is today thought of as an early user of hypnosis. Throughout the 1770s and 1780s, he captivated French society. Marie Antoinette was particularly interested in his abilities. Finally, King Louis convened a scientific body in 1784 to examine the claims of Mesmer and his disciples. Benjamin Franklin, still in France as an American envoy, headed the committee, which debunked Mesmerism. The report can be found in the Papers of Benjamin Franklin and in the Diary of Benjamin Franklin Bache, both of which are at the APS.

This essay, written in French in 1786, came after this committee's report. Mesmer still had wide appeal and was living in London at the time. This rather long essay (250 pages) offers a detailed analysis of Mesmerism and the possible scientific reasons for its purported powers.

Indexing Terms


Genre(s)

  • Manuscript Essays

Personal Name(s)

  • Bruno, M. de
  • Mesmer, Franz Anton, 1734-1815

Subject(s)

  • Animal magnetism.
  • Beyond Early America
  • Hypnotism.
  • Medicine
  • Mesmerism.
  • Natural history
  • Science and technology


Detailed Inventory

Essai metaphysique, physique et phisiologistique relativement à la découverte de M. Mesmer