Brown University Library

Bate, John

The Mysteryes of Nature and Art . In foure severall parts .. .[Part lI] The composingof all Manner of Fire-Works For Triumph and Recreacion ...
London: R. Bishop for Andrew Cook, 1654.

Bate's treatise on Nature and Art was one of the earliest English books to have a separate section on fireworks. Another edition (1635) of this title is found in the H. Adrian Smith Collection of Conjuring and Magicana.


Photograph 3a: Title-page, featuring a
"Green Man" carrying a
torch composed of fireworks.

Photograph 3b: Instructions for making
flying dragons



John Bate
The Mysteries of Nature and Art. In four several Parts ...
London: R. Bishop for Andrew Crook, 1654. [Above]

The second book in this edition of Bate's Mysteries of Nature and Art is entitled "The composing of all manner of Fier-Works For Trumph and Recreacion, plainly and exactly taught." Among the topics covered are: compositions for rockets of all sizes; compositions for receipts of fire-workes, that operate upon the earth; compositions for fire-workes that burne upon or in the water; how to make compounded rockets; and how to make flying Dragons. This copy is opened to the title-page with its woodcut of a "Green Man" bearing a fire-club. "Green Men," or "Wild Men," traditionally led many ceremonial processions in 17th-century England. They are described in a contemporary source as being "men in green ivy, set with work upon their outer habit, with black hair and black beards, very ugly to behold, and garlands upon their heads, with great clubs in their hands, with fireworks to scatter abroad to maintain the way for the rest of the show." Chris Philip's bookplate is on the facing leaf.

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