Intriguing talk to delve into life of ‘Dr John Dee: Renaissance Man’

AN INTRIGUING history talk will delve into the life of ‘Dr John Dee: Renaissance Man in the Labyrinth of Reformation Manchester’ on Wednesday, September 13.

Dr John Dee

2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and this will be Saddleworth Historical Society’s second lecture examining its impact on local society and religion.

Professor Stephen Bowd will speak on the topic at Saddleworth Museum, starting at 7.30pm.

John Dee was the archetypal Renaissance man: Alchemist, scientist, mathematician, courtier, magician and spy.

But in 1605 he had been the Warden of the College of Manchester for ten years and was in serious trouble.

Denounced by his collegiate fellows, he was barely able to scrape together enough money to feed his young family and household servants, and found his appeals for employment to the new King James falling on deaf ears.

Why was one of the most learned men in Elizabethan and Jacobean England ignored and reviled in Reformation Manchester and beyond?

In this lecture Prof Bowd will reconstruct the dark ‘labyrinth’ in which this fascinating figure found himself.

In the process he recovers Manchester’s largely hidden pre-industrial past and shows how religious fundamentalism and division shaped its society.

Prof Bowd is a professor of early modern history at Edinburgh University and was until 2005 employed by Manchester Metropolitan University where he became interested in Dee.

‘Dr John Dee: Renaissance Man in the Labyrinth of Reformation Manchester’ will be presented by Professor Stephen Bowd at Saddleworth Museum, starting at 7.30pm on Wednesday, September 13, 2017. Members free, non-member £3.


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