New York: Samuel Weiser, Inc., 1970. First Edition Thus. Hardcover. First printing of this edition. Octavo, original black cloth titled in gilt on spine panel. 335 pp. The true first printing of the Weiser edition; not the Doves Press / Weiser edition, but the edition bound in black cloth with the beautiful Kip Stag dust wrapper illustration of a woman flying across the sky with the moon behind, all on a black background with purple and white lettering. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket, price corner clipped. A lovely copy of a very scarce and desirable edition. Fine in Dust Jacket. Item #311540
¶ Crowley's major occult novel about a war between a group of white magicians and a group of black magicians over the soul of an unborn child, the "Moonchild". Numerous acquaintances of Crowley appear as thinly disguised fictional characters. Crowley portrays MacGregor Mathers as the primary villain, including him as a character named SRMD, using the abbreviation of Mathers' magical name. Arthur Edward Waite appears as a villain named Arthwaite, and the unseen head of the Inner Circle of which SRMD was a member, "A.B." is theosophist Annie Besant. Among Crowley's friends and allies Allen Bennett appears as Mahatera Phang, the dancer Isadora Duncan appears as Lavinia King, and her companion Mary D'Este (who helped Crowley write his magnum opus "Magick: Book 4" under her magical name 'Soror Virakam') appears as Lisa la Giuffria. Cyril Grey is Crowley himself. We have been told that the previous owner of this copy, whose signature appears on the bookplate was English pianist and composer John Andrew Howard Ogdon (1937 - 1989).