A Study of the Documentary Sources of
his Biography, covering the Period of
his Preparation, 1688-1744


Late Dean of the Theological School
of the Academy of the New Church

Bryn Athyn




Explanatory Foreword

1653-1735       Jesper Swedberg - Notes on his Biography              1
1688       Swedenborg"s Birth, - Early Childhood and Education       3
1700       Swedenborg's first Literary Piece printed       17
1707 Nov.       Swedenborg's first Latin Production . . . .       18
1710 March       A Festal Applause and other early Poems . . .       32
1710 May       1st FOREIGN JOURNEY:       35

              In London on August 3rd . . . . .       35
1712 Jan.              In Oxford . . . . . .       51

              In Holland . . . . . . . . .       57
1713 May              Arrived in Paris . . . . . . . . . .       61
1714 May/June       In Hamburg        . . . .       .       .       .       64

       Swedenborg's Inventions discussed . . . . . .       65

July-Sept.              In Rostock . . . . . . . . . .       70

       In Greifswalde       70
1715              Camena Borea (Ovidian Fables) described       72

       Ludus Heliconius . . . . . . . .              77

       Festivus Applausus - described . . . . . . .               78

May       Arrived in Sweden . . . . .               86

Oct       Daedalus Hyperboreus - Preface . . . .. .              92
1716 Jan.              "              "               - 1st number . . . . . .       96

       To Stiernsund - 1st meeting, with Polhem & Family       103

March       To Starbo - Prepares copy for DH II . . . .              104

       De Causis Rerum        . .       .       .       .       .       105

April       Daedalus Hyperboreus II Described       . . . . . .              107

       "                     "              III                            111

June       Death of Swedenborg's brother Eliezer                     116

       On Certain Kinds of Soil and Mud . . . . .       .        117

       Daedalus Hyperboreus III - described . . . . .       118

Sept.              "       "              IV - described        . . . . .       121

       A Flying Machine . . . . . . . . . . .              121

       Longitude - see also pp. 173, 179 . . . . .       124

Nov.       3 Points to the King re an Observatory (see p. 111)

       and a Mechanical Laboratory (se p.112) . . . .       128

Dec.       In Lund - meets Charles XII . . . . . . .       130

       Daedalus Hyperboreus V - Preparation for       134
1717 Jan.       To Karlskrona with Polhem . . . . . . . . .       138

Feb.       In Stiernsund - DH V completed . . . .       142

April       Daedalus Hyperboreus V - described . . . . .       145

       A Relation concerning Stiernsund's Tinplated ware       147

       A new Theory concerning the Stoppage of the Earth

              1st draft described . . . . . . . . . . .. 148

       Takes seat in Bergskollegium . . . . . . . .       149

       A New System of Reckoning - being prepared . . .       154
1718 Jan.       " "        "        "       "              - described . . . . . .       164

       Algebra or Regel-konst - described (see also p. 232) 166

       On Air and Water Particles       "       ( "       "       " 235). 173

       Longitude (see pp. 1799, 237) . . . . . . . . . 173

       Height of Water (see pp. 196, 201). . . . . .       174

       The Motion and Position of the Earth & Planets . . .       174

       Nature of Fire and Colors - described (see p. 196) . 174

       Behm property described . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175


1718 Feb.       Longitude - described . . . . . . . . .              179

       Sluice work - Assistant to Polhem at Wennersborg        181

July       Reputed Engagement between S. and Emerentia P.

Sept.       Daedalus Hyperboreus VI - described . . . . . .       186

Oct.                "        "       VII, VIII . . . . .        190

Dec.       Stoppage of the Earth - described (see also p. 148)        190

1719 Feb.       Information on the Dock the Sluice Work, and the Salt Work

              described. . . . .       194

       At Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 196

       Height of Water - described (see p. 201). . . . . 197

May       Swedberg Family ennobled . . . . . . . .              199

Nov.       Swedish Blast Furnaces - described . . . . . . .       202

       Swedenborg's earliest Thought re Theological matters       207

       Coinage, New Ways of Discovering Mines, described       208

       The Falling and Rising of Lake Venner              "       210

       At Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . . .               212
1720 Feb.       Acta Literaria Sveciae - 1st number              214

       Tremulation - discussed (see pp. 188, 201, 202)       215

June       On the increase and degrees of Heat in Bodies according to the

              Bullular Hypothesis - described (see also p. 222) 224

       Proceedings re Sara Bergia's Will (see also p. 230) . . . 225

July       Increase in Salary - application to King . . . . . .       228
1721 May       First notice in learned world abroad - letter to a'Melle . 232

June       2nd FOREIGN JOURNEY:                            234

              Amsterdam (end of July) . . . . . .              235

Oct.       Chemistry, Iron and Fire and Longitude published . . . . 235

Nov.              Leiden (November) . . . . . . .                     239

Dec.              Amsterdam . . . . . . . . .               239

       Elementary Particles, & etc. described . . . . . . . . .       241       

              Aix-la-Chapelle, Liege                                          243

              Leipzig . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 245
1722 March       Miscellaneous Observations IV - described . . . . . . .       248

April       de Behm Inheritance Dispute (see also p. 253, 282) . . . . . 250

       The Genuine Treatment of Metals, Notice of . . . . . .       252

       Medevi. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 252

July       Return to Stockholm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       255

August       1st Literary Dispute - Answer to Quensel . . . . . 255

       Miscellaneous Observations I-III - review of . . . . . .       256

              (see also p. 139)

Nov.       Exposition of a hydrostatic Law . . . . . . . . . . . 258

       Thoughts on the Fall and Rise of the Swedish Coinage

              described . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .              260

       At Bergscollegium. . . . .       . . . . . . .        261
1723-24 Feb.       Collectanea Metallica or lost work on Copper . . 279
1724 May       At Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .               283

       Brita Behm Mining Law Process - Report on Lindbohm        288
1725              At Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . .                      297


1725 April       Suit with Brita Behm re Axmar Property       

       (see also pp. 311, 320) . . . . . .                            303
1725-26       In Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . .              309
1726 June       Axmar Property Dispute continued . . . . . .        311

Oct.       At Diet - Hannover Alliance Dispute, Dippel Trial. . . 321
1727               Swedenborg's Income discussed (see pp. 335, 679) . . . .       329
1729 Nov.       Swedenborg becomes a Member of Soc. of Sciences . . . . 330
1730 May       At Bergscollegium - Swedenborg as Mediator . . . . . . . .       332

              Collectanea: "On Gold and Silver" 1727 . . . . . . . 337

       "On the Secretion or Separation of Silver from Copper" 1727. . 337

       "On Vitriol" end of 1727 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       337

       "On Sulphur and Pyrites" 1727 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 337

       "On Common Salt," 1729 (see p. 140) . . . . . . . . . . . . 338

       "On Iron" 1729 . . . . . . . . . . .                     338
1729 Nov.       Principles of Natural Things (see pp. 369, 416) . . . . . 339

       Algebra and Geometry (Cod. 86) - described . . . . . . .       340
1730              Declination of the Magnetic Needle - described . . . . . . .       342
1731 Jan.       At Diet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 344
1731-32       Principia and The Magnet written (see p. 419) . . . . . .       346
1733 April       Motion of the Elements - described . . . . .                     348

May       3rd FOREIGN JOURNEY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       349

              Stralsund (May 25th) . . . . . . .              351

              Greifswalde (May 27th) . . . . . . . . .       352

              Neu Brandenburg (May 28-29) . . . .              352

              Old Strelitz       ( "       30) . . . . .       353

June              Berlin       (June 2) . . . . . . . .       354

              Dresden       ( "       7) . . . . . .              358

       Principia finished June 20 (see also p. 369) . . . . .       359

July              Prague (July 23rd) . . . . . . .                     374

       "Definition of First Natural Point" (see p. 382) . . . . 374

              Prague       (July 24th) . . . . . . .                     377

August       Carlsbad ( " 30th) . . . . . . .                     382

              Prague       (August 19th) . . . . . . .              387

              Dresden (       " 25th) . . . . . . .               388

       Sat for portrait . . . . . . . . . .                     390

              Leipzig (Sept. 3rd) . . . . . . . . . . . . 390

Oct.       Mechanism of Soul and Body - described . . . . . . 390

       Notes on Wolff's Psychologia Empirica - described . . . 403
1734 Jan.-Mar.       The Infinite MS. delivered to printer . . .       412

March       Halle (March 1st) . . . . . . . .                     412

              Leipzig . . . . . . . . . . .                            414

May       Opera Phil. et Mineralia and de Infinito published . .414

       The Principia examined (see also pp. 346, 432) . . 416

       Iron and Copper examined . . . . . . . .              419

       De Infinito examined . . . . . . .                      422

July       Arrived in Stockholm - Duties at Bergscollegium . . . . . 428

       Cod. 88 = Excerpts from Wolff, Dupleix, Newton,

              etc. - described . . . . . . . . . . . . . .              433

       Title-pages and Plans of Animal Kingdom Series

              described (see also pp. 552, 620, 677) . . . 436


1735              Swedenborg's Work as Commissioner in Bergscollegium        440

July       Death of Bishop Swedberg . . . . . . . . .               441
1736 March       At Bergscollegium . . . . . . . . . . .              443
1736 July       4th FOREIGN JOURNEY:              446

              Copenhagen (July 16) . . . . . . .               447

              Hamburg       (       "       30) . . . . .               451

August       Hannover (August 6) . . . . . . .               453

              Amsterdam ( "       17) . . . . . . .        454

       First of a series of Events culminating in Swedenborg's Admission

              to the Spiritual Word - discussed . . .        455

              Rotterdam (August 21) . . . .              456

              Brussels       (       " 25) . . . .       459

Sept.              Paris       (September 3) . . ..              461                     

1737              Study of Anatomy - Practices Dissection . . . . .       472
1738 March              Lyons (March 17) . . . . . .              475

              Turin ( "       31) . . . . . . . . . . . . .       479

April              Milan (April 9) . . . . . . . . . .       482

              Padua ( " 17) . . . . . .               486

              Venice( " 19) . . . . . .               487

       The Cerebrum (Cod. 65) written here described

              (see also pp. 524, 556) . . . . . . .        489

August       Verona, Mantua, Ferrara (Aug. 11,14, 21) . . . . . . 497

              Bologna (August 23) . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                     498

              Florence (       "       28) . . . . . . . . . . . . .              499

Sept.              Rome (September 25) . . . . . . .                      505

1739 Feb.       The Cerebrum - further discussed . . . .        524

       The Way to a Knowledge of the Soul described . . . . 525

       Faith and Good Works described . . . . .        526

       Codex 37 Excerpts from Boerhaave, Verheyen, Allen, etc.,

              - described . . . . . . . . . . . . . .        527

              Florence (Feb. 20) . . . . . . . .                      529

March              Genoa (March 17) . . . . . . . .                      530

       Swedenborg's Dreams mentioned in Heirs' Note . . . . . 531

May              Paris (early May) . . . . . . . .               532

       Political Scene during Swedenborg's Absence . . . . . 532

June              Amsterdam (early June) . . . . . . .                      534

       Swedenborg's Inlaid Marble Table described -

                     (see also p. 561) . . . . . .              534

       Economy of the Animal Kingdom discussed (see p. 592)        535

       Description of Swoon experienced at beginning . . . . .        536

Dec.       Plans for continuation of Economy Series (Cod. 88) . . 552

       Codex 57 - described . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .        553

       Characteristic & Mathematical Philosophy of

              Universals described . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       553

       Additions to The Cerebrum described . . . . . . . .              556

       Eminent Generation described . . . . . .                     560

       Inlaid Marble Table arrives in Stockholm (Nov. 1739) . . .       561

March       Index of EAK I and study of Leeuwenhoek and Swammerdam

       (Cod. 57) - described . . . . .                            562


1740 April       Economy of the Animal Kingdom II - described;

              see also pp. 596, 776 . . . . . . . . . . . . 570

August       Reviews of EAK I and II . . . . . . . . . . . . . 592

Autumn       Return to Stockholm and Financial Matters . . . . . . 599

1741 Jan.       Becomes member of Kungliga Vetenskaps-Societet . . . . . . 602

       Reply, re Controversy with Celsius . . . . . . . . . .       602

Feb.       In House of Nobles . . . . . . . . .               606

       In Bergscollegium - Swedenborg's work in Judicial cases. . . 608

       Change of Plans for EAK Series (see p. 552) . . . . . . . 620

       A Philosopher's Note Book - reviewed (see pp. 771, 776). . 621

       The Fibre - described . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 639

       On Divine Providence, Predestination, Fate,

              Fortune and Human Prudence (see p. 783) . . . . .       648

       Harmony between Soul and Body (see p. 647) discussed . . 648

       The Origin and Propagation of the Soul described . . . . . 654

       The Animal Spirit - described . . . . . . .        655

       Sensation or Passion Of the Body described . . . . . . . 657

       Action - described . . . . . . . . .               658

       On the Red Blood . . . . .                            660
1742              The Soul or Rational        Psychology (Cod. 54) discussed . . . 660

       Ontology - described . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       672

       A Hieroglyphic Key - see pp. 769-71 . . . . .              673

       The Brain (Cod. 55) - 1st Draft - described; see pp. 798-805 673

       Plan for continuation of EAK Series . . . . . . . . . 677

July       The Animal Kingdom (Cod. 53) - commenced; see also

              pp. 776, 777 . . . . . . . . . .                     681

       Periosteum, The Breasts, The Ear and Hearing,

              The Eye and Sight (Cod. 53) - discussed. . . .       682

       Generation - described . . . . . . . . .        682

       Transaction and Induction Series changed to Analytic

              - see p. 681 . . . . . . . . .                     684

       Renewed Studies of Schurig, Leeuwenhoek and

              Swammerdam. (Cod. 53) - described . . . . . . . 687

       Swedenborg's Comments on the Bee, etc., . . . . . . .       690

August       At the House of Nobles . . . . . . . . .                     693
1742-43       Animal Kingdom I, II rewritten for publication . . . . 701

1743 July       5th FOREIGN JOURNEY: (Journal changed to record of Dreams) . 704

              Ystad (July 27) . . . . . . . .              704

August       Stralsund (August 7) . . . . . . . . . . . 705

              Hamburg (August 12) . . . . . .                     706

              Amsterdam (August 25 or 26) . . . .              708

       Animal Kingdom MS. rewritten . . . . .       709

       First Experience of Preternatural Sleep . . . . . . . 710

       Animal Kingdom reviewed . . . .               710
1744 March       Journal of Dreams - 1st dated dream, etc. . . . 716

       Animal Kingdom II completed - Epilogue examined . . . . . 722

       Observations on Steps in opening of Swedenborg's

              Spiritual Eyes (see pp. 743-45) . . . . . . . . . 727

       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . . 735



1744 April              The Hague (April 1 or 2) . . . . .              736

       The Lord's Second Appearance to Swedenborg . . . . . . . 740

              See First Appearance,       p. 718

       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . . 743

       Most complete and minute description of Spiritual

              Temptations in JD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 753

              Leiden . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .        764

              Amsterdam       (April 24) . . . . . . . . . . . . .       765

              The Hague       ( "       25) .. . . . . . . . . . . .       766

May       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . . . 768

       Hieroglyphic Key - described . . . . . . . . . . .769

       Study of the Word (Cod. 36) in continuation of HK . . . . . 771

              Harrwich (May 4 = May 15 N. S.) see p. 768 . . . 773

              London ( "       5 =       "       16       "       ) . . . . . . . 774

       Indices to EAK II and AK I-II (Cod. 38) . . . . . . . 776

June       Extracts from The Elements of all Geometry A Musical

              Dictionary and A Compleat System of Opticks

              copied in A Phil. Note Book (Cod. 36) . . . . 776

       The Five Senses (Cod. 58), first draft described;

              see also pp. 756, 767 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       777

       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . . . 781

       Notes on Works by Desaguilier and Robert Smith examined 784

       A Course of Experimental Philosophy . . . . . . .       785

       A Compleat Course of Opticks . . . . . . . . . . .       785

July       Epilogue or last chapter of Five Senses -

              described; see p. 805 . . . . . . . . . . .       788

       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . 794

       The Brain - Additions to (Cod. 58), described . . . 798

Aug.       Journal of Dreams - description continued . . . . . . . 805

Sept.       Introduction into Spiritual World chiefly during

              the writing on the Five Senses . . . . . . . . 810

Oct.       The Five Senses finished Oct. 6, marking conclusion       

              of Physiological Studies and Writings . . . . . . 815

       Worship and Love of God commenced Oct. 7 -

                     described; see p. 830 . . . . . . . . . . 816

       Dreams while writing WLG - described . . . . . . . . 816

       Worship and Love of God, 3rd Section described . . . 823

       Last entry in JD . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .       829

              (see p. 813)

       The Five Senses, review of . . . . . . . . . . . . . 829

BIBLIOGRAPHY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       831

APPENDIX - Genealogies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 838

                     EXPLANATORY FOREWORD

The following material is duplicated by a ditto-process in 100 sets of 842 pages each, from a typed copy revised in handwriting by the author, Alfred Acton, B.Th., M.A., D.Th., the late Dean of the Theological School of the Academy of the New Church.

Since the author, who died on April 279 1956, never had the opportunity to complete his work, or to go over the manuscript himself for a final editing, there may be found occasional repetitions and possible errors in the text. How- ever, Dr. Acton's secretary and niece, Miss Beryl G. Briscoe, who has been long associated with his work, has made such editorial adjustments as were necessary, verified questionable references, made up the references into a bibliography, and supplied a table of contents.

In this work, Dr. Acton has sought to record the life of Emanuel Swedenborg from the most original sources available. The record is laid out in chronological order without subdivisions. The references are usually to the original documents, first records, or original editions. So, for instance, references to many of Swedenborg's early letters are to the Opera Quaedam, wherein they are printed in their original languages.       

It is to be regretted that Dr. Acton was unable to proceed with his exhaustive research further than up to the year 1744 when he concludes the story of Swedenborg's preparation by a full account of the Journal of Dreams. The transition period of 1743 to 1748 is treated in Dr. Acton's Introduction to the Word Explained (1927). His Letters and Memorials of Emanuel Swedenborg (1948 and 1955) provide a further aid to the study also of Swedenborg's later life so far as this is illustrated from his correspondence; but this work cannot be regarded as a biography, and it must become the task of some later scholar to continue the important research studies which should record the life of the Seer of the Second Advent from 1744 and throughout the period when he was consciously associated with the inhabitants of the spiritual world as well as with men on earth.

For the use of future scholars, the Academy of the New Church possesses a set of loose leaf record books entitled the Academy Collection of Swedenborg Documents (ACSD) but familiarly referred to as "The Green Books." In these are listed chronologically every known reference to documentary evidence touching the life of Swedenborg, including typewritten copies of the original documents and, frequently, available translations.

                                                                                                          Hugo Lj. Odhner
Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania





Jesper Swedberg, the father of Emanuel Swedenborg, was born on August 28, 1653., on the estate of his parents, which was known as Sveden. It was situated east of Falun in Store Kopparberg diocese. Jesper was entered in the Westmanland-Dala 'nation' at Upsala University, Nov. 1666, as "Jesper Danielis Swedbergh," the surname being derived from Sveden and from Kopparberg. (Tottie "Jesper Svedbergs Lif och Verksamhet", Upsala 1855, vol. I., pp. 5, 11. This work in two parts, together with Svedberg's own auto-biography, "Lefvernesbeskrifning", constitute full accounts of Bishop Swedberg's life. Tottie's work is fully documented.)

Jesper Swedberg's life shows that he believed in revelations by dreams and visions, and in the reality of the spiritual world and the actual presence of angels and spirits with men.

We may regard this as a preparation for that state with Emanuel Swedenborg which enabled him to have his spiritual eyes opened; but it has been regarded as accounting for a "visionary."

The insanity of Emanuel Swedenborg's maternal grandmother, and the melancholia of his maternal uncle have been adduced to show a state of mental weakness in Emanuel Swedenborg himself; but on examination, this assertion amounts to no more than an effort to account for the prejudged opinion that Emanuel Swedenborg cannot have been mentally sound since he claimed intercourse with the spiritual world.

After receiving his master degree in Upsala, December 12, 1682, Jesper Swedberg was appointed Chaplain of the Lif-regiment, then stationed in Stockholm, and was ordained Feb. 12, 1683, after which he moved to Stockholm.(UUH 2:310; Tottie pp. 20, 29)
Before this, however, he went to Falun in connection with the inheritance of his father's property.        (ACSD Al)

He married Sarah Behm, December 16. 1683, and by this means became quite well off.

Of his marriage, Jesper Swedberg writes:

"My wife, Sarah Behm, held me very dear, as I held her. When it was firmly determined that we should become one man, we lovingly came into agreement that she should rule in the house as an intelligent wife and prudent mistress, as she pleased. I should not interfere with her. What money or ought else she called for, she would receive at first request, and more rather than less. But, on the other hand, she also must promise me two things:


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 3                                                                                                                  [1684

first, that she would never interfere with my office., and as to this will have no word or direction. If I am called by my God and approved by my superior, I should know how to perform my office. With her prayers, she should indeed help me as I should help her; but, for the rest - nothing. Then, for the second thing, she must promise me that when I sit in convivial and pleasant company and have there my enjoyment and peace without over-drinking, without offense or annoyance to any one, she will then grant me the pleasant peace and enjoyment after my strenuous work and many cares; that then she will by no means ask me to leave. And I believe that Christ's thought was the same when He answered His mother somewhat harshly in the wedding at Cana in Galilee, 'Woman, what have I to do with thee? my time is not yet come.'" (Tottie, I, p. 30f)

He writes also: "From God's gentle hand I received a wife rich in property and money, and, in addition, rich in virtue, the fear of God, seriousness, piety, and industry. I say seriousness, because she never boasted of her wealth, but in mind, speech, manners, and clothing, she was modest and not after the way of the world." (Ibid.)        

In the summer of 1684, he visited England, France, Germany, and Holland, returning to Sweden in August 1685. (Tottie, I., 32f)

In connection with this journey we may note his intercourse with the learned orientalist Edzardus, whose son his son Emanuel was to meet 25 years later in London. He was much impressed by Edzardus's habit of daily blessing his children by laying his hands on their head, and in his Auto-biography he writes: "So did the Patriarch Jacob bless his sons Ephraim and Manasseh (Gen. 48:14). So did Christ bless the little children. Happy are those children whose parents thus bless them. Thus did I with my own children when they were little." (Ibid. 41-2)

His last conversation with Edzardus before leaving for Stockholm: To Swedberg's question, In what language would they speak when they came to God's kingdom, Edzardus would give no answer; whereupon, Swedberg expressed himself as follows: "I think it will be angel language. As the angels talk Swedish when they talk with Swedes., German with Germans, English with Englishmen, and so forth, so I will talk Swedish with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they will answer me in Swedish. They talk with me in Hebrew which I then understand, and I answer them in Hebrew; and so with people of all sorts of tongues. That we shall not talk there, this I do not believe. To talk is a human property. We shall there sing praises to God with loud voices and say Blessed is He who sitteth upon the throne, our God and Lamb; and all the angels worshipped God and said Amen, Praise and honor, etc. Yes, this is their speech. We do not become dumb. God help us thither that we may come to know this and more and more completely." (Ibid. 42)

During his absence, his wife lived with her sister and sister-in-law, Fru Peter Swedberg, in Stockholm, where her firstborn Albrecht was born in November, 1684. (He died in June 1696, ten days after his Mother).

On Jesper Swedberg's return, he moved with his wife and child to a house in Jakob's Parish, Stockholm, and probably to a detached stone house in the aristocratic part of the parish, on a site now numbered 22 (or 18) Regeringsgatan. (N. K. Tid. '14/172, '14/138a)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 4                                                                                                          [1688

This is indicated by the fact, that the second child Anna (born September 19, 1686) was baptized (September 24) in St. Jakob's Church. (Ibid. 138s) The house was bought by Jesper Swedberg in May 30, 1690, for 11,000 Kpmt; but it would appear that he lived there as a tenant before the purchase. It had belonged to a nobleman who died in June 1689, and was willed to 1st Court Preacher Wiraenius who had been appointed Bishop of Vaxjo and would soon leave Stockholm. The house stood on a lot 17 x 47 ells. (Stock. Radh. Arkiv. d. 1692 May 2)

Meanwhile, Jesper Swedberg had added to his family his nephew, John Moraeus, the son of Jesper's sister Barbro who had been left a widow with seven children and in hard circumstances, though in possession of the estate Sweden. On a visit to his birthplace in 1686, Jesper was so charmed with his nephew (E. Swedenborg's future tutor) (14 years old) that he adopted him and took him to Stockholm to his home there, and afterwards to Upsala, even to the time when Jesper left Upsala for Skara, when he furnished Moraeus with money for a long foreign journey. (Sv. Biog. Lex. 2b)

Swedenborg was born at the site on Regeringsgatan on Sunday, January 29, 1688, and baptized in St. Jakob's Church on February 2. 1688 (Candlemas day), as shown by the baptism book of that day, where the names or the six godparents are given. (N.K. Tid. '14/138) Of his naming, his father writes: "My son Emanuel's name signifies God with us (Isa. 7/14, Matt. 1/23). First, that he may ever be reminded of God's presence and of the sufficient, holy and secret union in which we, by faith, stand with our kind and gracious God; that He is with us, in us, and we with Him and in Him. Secondly, God has also even to this moment (1733 May), blessed be His name, surely been with him. May God be also with him hereafter, until he come to be everlastingly with God in His kingdom." (Sw. text N.K. Tid. '15/121.)                                                                                                                                                                               The law of November 3, 1686, required:

                                                                                           1 That children should be baptized at the latest at 8 days old

2 That the baptism shall be in the church, except for weighty reasons, and on a Sunday or Feast, day when the congregation is present.

3 That he shall have godparents but no more than 3 men and women

4 That the ceremony shall be celebrated by the pastor of the parish where the child is born. (N.K. Tid. '14/170)

In his letter to Hartley, Swedenborg gives the date of his birth as January 29, 1689, and this has caused much discussion (see Int. Rep. 1833/497). Tuxen relates that in 1770 he asked Swedenborg the reason for this and reports: "He told me that he was not born in that year as mentioned but in the preceding one. And on my asking him whether this was a fault in the printing, he answered, 'No, but the reason was this: You may remember in reading my writings to have seen it mentioned in many places that every figure or number in the spiritual. sense has a certain correspondence or signification annexed,' and he added that when he had first put the true year in that letter, an angel present told him that he should write the year now printed as much more suitable to himself than the other; and you know, said the angel, that with us time and space are nothing. 'For this reason it was,' continued he, 'that I wrote it.'" (See n. 5 below) (2 Doc. 436)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 5                                                                                                                 [1692

Despite the above, it seems almost certain that Swedenborg wrote the year 1689 simply by error, as would be not unlikely, especially with a man of 80 years old - or even with any one.

1. In the same letter to Hartley, Swedenborg says that he returned to Sweden in 1714, which is an error for 1715. (1 Doc. 7)

2. Excellent reasons are given in the Intellectual Repository (1833, p. 497) for doubting whether an angel would speak as reported by Tuxen., and lead to falsifying a record which was professedly meant as a guide to his friends in case of need. (Ibid. 6)

3. Tuxen, who then knew little of the Writings, was 77 years of age when he wrote the account quoted above in 1790, twenty years after the event.

4. It is probable, and perhaps certain., that he did ask Swedenborg the question as to 1689, but Swedenborg may have taken the occasion to speak of the correspondences of numbers, and Tuxen have mistaken this (20 years later) as an explanation of the figures 1689.

5. It has been supposed that since, at this time, the year in England began with March 1, Swedenborg, who wrote the letter to Hartley in England, desired to translate the date of his birth into the English date, and that by error, instead of writing 1687 (which would have been correct), he wrote 1689.

6. Reference to the autograph shows that 1688 was not "first written." The date 1689 is given by Ferelius in the record of Swedenborg's death, but this is clearly due to the printed letter to Hartley. It is corrected in the margin of the record. (In ANC)

Jesper Swedberg continued in Stockholm until his call, in September 24, 1692, (Tot. 153) to become 3rd Theological Professor in Upsala. He sold his stone house for 11,000 Kr. and was installed in his new position in November 1692, and in the following December was made Rector of the University. (Ib. 157) Elected at the end of November and installed a few days later. But in the following year, Albrecht was entered as a student in the University where he is spoken of as a "promising student." (UUH 2:2:43; Stroh 4)

In 1694 (October 17), Jesper Swedberg was appointed 1st Theological Professor, an office which carried with it the office of Pastor of Upsala, and, in the absence of the Archbishop, head of the Consistory. (Tottie 183, 195) He entered on his new office May 2, 1696, when he commenced lectures on the New Testament., continued yearly, laying special stream on the importance of a Christian life: "Both understanding and will must be amended; and now-a-days, but little attention is paid to the latter. (Ibid. 185-88)

At first, however, he was frequently absent at Stockholm, as a member of the Commission for revising the Swedish Bible, and also as a member of the Diet in 1695. (Ibid. 175-76)



He was also at work on the Swedish Hymn Book, for which he wrote many hymns which are still retained. This work led him to a study of the Swedish language, with the result that he embarked on a lifelong work for the purification of that tongue, which was despised by the learned and the court, and into which many foreign words were brought. (Tottie 178-79)

As pastors he was solicitous in preserving order in church; in holding regular catechisings, wherein he instilled the lessons of the sermon, and which he held as ten times more valuable than the sermon; and in studious preparation of his sermons. Emanuel Swedenborg must have come under his influence as catechiser, and have caught something of the Christian pietism combined with a sociable disposition and sound common sense which distinguished him. (Ibid. 212; cf. 2 Doc. 178)

While no Pietist, Jesper Swedberg had some sympathy with them, and with them was especially opposed to faith alone and the formalisms which were then prevalent. Consequently, he made little of fine doctrinal distinctions, etc., and so seemed to others to be sometimes indifferent to the purity of doctrine. "I am decidedly on the side of those who will forward true Christianity, even though their means may not be the best." (Tottie 189-90)

In addition to public lectures, Jesper Swedberg also gave "colleges" on Proof passages, Swedish Bible, Moral Theology, etc. - which latter subject was not in the course of lectures. (Ibid. 190)

In 1696, he called J. Moraeus (aged 24), who had been with an apothecary in Stockholm, to Upsala, to tutor his son Emanuel. Moraeus had a great love of medicine and was delighted to have this opportunity of studying at Upsala. Moraeus was also interested in mineralogy, as shown by his Disputation in May 1703 De Victriolo. (SBL Mor. 139; ACSD 2b; ALS 1:l8)

"I saw two who were good men - Moraeus and Bierchenius." (SD 4717)

It was between this period and l699 that the earliest known signature belongs, written on a disputation on a medical subject, and probably given to Emanuel by Moraeus who was devoted to medicine.

Previous to this, in February 1696, Jesper Swedberg had bought a lot in the Great or New Square for 6300 Kmt., and built there a stone house, finished in 1698. It would appear that this lot already had a wood house. The building now on this site has above the doorway, on the inner court an iron plate with the inscription: J. S. P. U. 1696       (URA; Tottie 208:2)

Meanwhile, he seems to have lived at Cathedral Square near Rudbeck's house. (ACSD 1b; Stroh 8)

In June 1696, his wife, Sarah Behm, died of a pestilential fever on June 17 at the age of 30 years, (she was 17 when married) leaving behind her eight children, ranging from 9 months to 13 years. But her oldest child, Albrecht, was also smitten with the fever, and after a painful illness of two weeks died ten days after his mother.



Both were buried in the Cathedral on July 19, when the Rector,
Professor Schwede issued public invitations to the services. (NCL '09:694)

The picture we have of Sarah Behm shows her at the age of 26, according to the statement at the back. It is now in the Nordiska Museet (formerly in the possession of Baron J. V. V. Knorring of Goteborg). (NCL '07:689)

Of his wife, Jesper Swedborg writes: "Although she was daughter of an Assessor and wife of a Pastor of Upsala, and, in addition, of great riches, she never dressed according to her wealth, beyond what was necessary. When all women at that time wore the sinful and offensive bonnet called a fontage, she was obliged to follow the crowd, and so wore it. But when she heard that a cow in Gottland had, with much pain, agony, and suffering, and with miserable bellowing, brought forth a calf with a fontage, she took her own and her girls' fontages and threw them into the fire, making a promise that she and her children so long as they were under her authority would never wear them again.'" (SBL 16:284)

The birth here spoken of was on February 4, 1696. In a sermon, Swedberg speaks of this and says "our grand women in winter wore fontages ell high." He told Charles XII of it. He preached: "if we preachers remain dumb, God will raise up animals to preach." (Sab. Ro p. 82)

Elsewhere Jesper Swedberg writes: "She was a joy to me and gave me a happy life. I could never have borne the cares, hard work, and responsibilities with which I was overwhelmed unless this pious woman had upheld me. (Tottie 213)

The pious nature of Emanuel Swedenborg's home life is indicated by his statement in Spiritual Diary where, speaking of respiration being in accordance with thought, Swedenborg says it was given him to experience it before he spoke with spirits, "as when in infancy I wished purposely to hold my breath, during morning and evening prayers, also when I wished the alternations of respiration to concord with the alternations of the heart, and so that the intellect began then to vanish, as it were; also afterwards" etc. (3320). Again writing of internal respiration, he says: "I was accustomed so to breathe in infancy when I prayed morning and evening (3464). See D 529 where Swedenborg speaks of changes of the muscles of the face which he could not understand because he had not been initiated into them in infancy. (Intro. to WE pp. 21-22)

Emanuel Swedenborg speaks further of his early home life in a letter to Doctor Beyer, dated November 14, 1769, where he says:

"From my fourth to my tenth year (i.e., 1691-97 - up to and including first year of Moraeus) I have been ever in thoughts concerning God, salvation, and man's passiones spirituales, and have at different times discovered what my father and mother wondered at, and said angels must be talking through me.

"From my sixth to my twelfth year (i. e. 1693-99 - Upsala, before entering University) my delight has been to discuss with priests concerning faith that the life thereof is love, and that the love which gives life is



love to one's neighbor; and that God gives faith to one and all; and that only those receive it who practise love. Any other faith I then had no knowledge of, other than that God created nature, sustains it, imparts to man understanding and good disposition., and other such things as immediately follow therefrom. The learned faith, which is, that God the Father imputes His Son's justice to whomsoever He will and when He will, even to those who have done no repentance and improvement, I then knew nothing at; and had I known of it, it would then as also now have been far above my comprehension."        (2 Doc. 279-80)

Add to this the statement in True Christian Religion 16: From my infancy I have not been able to admit into my mind any other idea than that of one God."

In the passages from the Diary, we probably have the basis for the oft-repeated story, printed in the Dewdrop, 1853 p. 59, and which was taken "from a recent letter from England." "It is a matter currently related in Sweden, that when Emanuel Swedenborg was a little boy he would propose questions and make remarks so surprising to his parents, on religious subjects, that they would ask him how he came by such ideas, to which he would answer that he had them from the boys who played with him in the garden. The natural inference is, that he was, at that tender age, the subject of angelic visits."

It was in the Spring of this year that there fell on Swedberg, owing to the old age of the Archbishop Swebelius, that charge which resulted in his having - without official appointment - Episcopal appointment over the Swedish Church in Delaware (Tottie II 261 n. 2). The latter had asked for ministers in 1693, but the matter was not taken up until 1696 when in February, Swebelius appointed Rudman, and, at Jesper Swedberg's suggestions, Bjork, with the promise that on their return to Sweden they would receive a pastorate. (Clay. Annals of the Swedes on the Delaware pp. 50-54)

In December 1696, Jesper Swedberg elected Inspector of Westmanland-Dala Nation

December       1697              ditto.       of Stockholms Nation

March       1698              ditto.       Roslags              "

December       1699              ditto.       Gottlands              "

                                          (Tottie 202-3)

Formerly, the Nations had been forbidden (though in vain), but in 1663, they were recognized under charge of an Inspector. Every student must belong to a nation. (UUH 2:1:84-85, 74; 2:2:398)

At first, inspectors were chosen by the Faculty but later by the students.

The office was much desired because of its influence and because the Nations gave their inspectors expensive gifts every three years. Jesper Swedberg was the second inspector of Westmanland-Dala Nation and the first to be elected by students. (ibid. 399, 400)

There were two curators who were elected from the seniors.

                                   (See CND-V and UUH 3:2:397-98)



The inspectors had to hold two convocations every year, and it was at such a meeting that Swedberg also gave them talks and advice as to their reading; reading of portable Swedish Bible; learning a little Greek, and at least the Hebrew letters; use of Schmidius's Bible. (Tottie 1:203-6)

Jesper Swedberg, left with a family of seven small children, after serious prayer an November 3. 1697 married a second time, his second wife being Sara Bergia, daughter of a Dalacarlian priest. She had twice before been married, namely, to a merchant and to a magistrate (Nordling). (SBL 285)

An amusing account of their first meeting is given by Jesper Swedberg. (Tottie 2:271-72)

Sara Bergia was a wealthy woman with property which consisted in ironworks.

Swedenborg seems to have been her favorite son, and she wished to distinguish him in her will, being especially desirous that he possessed Starbo. (1 Doc. 374)

NOTE here the passage in Spiritual Diary: "Spirits known to me, told me my mothers, related that where they were they had clean residences which they could not show me, lest other spirits should catch an idea of them; they said that they bad been given them and changed, there they were constantly in their occupations; they wished to describe them but could not, except only that they were such, and were constantly given to them, and that they were there in delight.       1749 March 26. (S.D. 4181)

"My mothers said that in the life of the body my father was often absent, and they knew not where, and that he returned always with pleasure. Hence, it was perceived that he is sent by the Lord to various uses with men, now here now there, because his delight consisted in an active life. It was also said that without an active life be could not be in delight; therefore, after such activity he returned in delight. 1749 26 March." (S. D. 4182)

Meanwhile, Jesper Swedberg was building his new house on the new or great Square "a large new stone house and a costly garden". (SBL 256)

In 1698, in the Fall, this house was completed and dedicated by inviting all the poor people in the hospital to a meal. "I, my wife and children waited on and entertained them," and the entertainment was concluded with songs, prayers, thanksgiving, and mutual blessing.                                           (Tottie 213)

Emanuel was at this time nearly ten years of age.

Of Swedenborg's home life at this time, we got some suggestions from the Dream Book, where early memories seem again to be awakened.

On April 15, he writes: "It seemed to me I was racing downstairs, touched each step only a little, came safely all the way down without danger. Then came a voice from my dear father, Thou makest so much noise Emanuel. He was said to be angry with me, but it would pass over."



On the same day he writes: "Doctor Moraeus seemed to be courting a pretty girl; got her 'yes'; had her permission to take her where he would. I joked with her that she said 'yes' with pleasure, etc. She was a pretty girl; became taller and more beautiful."

On October 12 he writes: "My sister Caisa, (Catharine, who was 5 years younger than Swedenborg) was seen, who let on she was sick, and then lay down and screamed. When our mother came, she put on a different face and speech."

On October 27 he says: "In the A.M. there was seen to me in a vision the market, which was a disting* in my father's house in Upsala in the room upstairs (ofwanfore), in the entrance, or elsewhere all over."

* An annual market held in Upsala at the beginning of February and which dates its origin to heathen times.

In June 1699, Swedenborg entered the University, having first, as a necessary preliminary, been made a member of the Westmanland-Dala Nation. (Moraeus vent to Holland 1703)

In entering, the novitiate was first examined by the dean of the faculty under whom he would study, and be entered in the Academy's Album of Students, having first given proof that he had the first elements of rhetoric and Latin. (En.VDN 7)

A student entering the university was required (with three fingers on the Bible - U.U. Hist. 2/2/137) to take an oath of obedience to the rector, of willing obedience to the statutes of the academy, the decrees of the Consistory whether these concern the direction of studies or censure of conduct not to avenge either secretly or openly any injuries inflicted on him but in these and other sad cases to obey the Consistory; not to leave the Academy without the Rector's consent, nor run away if detained or arrested, nor carry off goods from the city without having first satisfied his creditors and to go to wherever the Academy appoints him. So help me God.

                                                                                           Those of tender years were excused this oath.

The Nations were 22 in number in 1700 and 25 in 1710; their members were Novitiates, Juniors and Seniors. Their private meetings were festal with eating, drinking, and smoking. (UUH 2:2:399 seq.)

They existed not only to enliven the student's life but for mutual encouragement to advance in studies. At the instance of their inspectors, they held exercises and orations to which were added disputations of two hours' long. The language used was usually Latin, and the disputations were appointed by the inspector (Constit. XXVI). (UUH 403, see also 121-2)

There was also very serious hazing, when the young students were in purgatory, sometimes for a year, though generally three months, as servants to an older who handled them roughly and sometimes shockingly - deemed necessary, that new students lay off their country ways and boastfulness and vanity contracted in small schools. (Constit. XVII; En.VDN 27)



Emanuel gave the usual contribution of 30 ore yearly from 1700-9 pro felici reditu. These were voluntary contributions for the poor fund. (CND-V 20: Constit. V)

The records of the Nation enter him as a "junior," from 1700-8, and as a "senior" 1709. (ACSD 10A)

He became senior in November 30, 1708, when with thirteen other Juniors he was elected to fill the vacancies caused by seniors who were leaving the University.        (CND-V 20)

Something of Emanuel Swedenborg's life, as a member of his Nation, is recorded in its Transactions. Thus: (CND-V 1s) He was present at the convocation May 10, 1700, presided over by his father, when the Nation adopted its constitution, and was one of the over 160 members who signed that document. Among other signatures were some who were closely associated with Swedenborg then and in later years, namely:

John Moraeus - his former tutor and probably continuing as such.

Eric Alstrin - afterwards Bishop whom he met in England

A. Swab (Swedenborg's stepbrother)

Peter Aroselius - with whom be conversed on Botany (see work on Generation)

John Hesselius - his companion on his journey in 1721. (step cousin)

1702, May 15-16, came the great fire in Upsala, when Jesper Swedberg's two houses (wood and stone) were destroyed; though his Hymn books in the Cathedral were uninjured. In this fire, the whole Westmanland-Dala Nation assembled to help Swedberg. (UUH 2:1:350 seq., 288n seq.; Tottie 136-37. I 208; ACSD 13A)

Jesper Swedberg appealed to Ulrice Eleonora., that the fire was the fruit of the people's sins.

On May 21, he was appointed Bishop of Skara. (Tottie 2: 14)

May 1, 1703, Swedberg took leave of Westmanland-Dala Nation, and a few days later, May 25, he received from the Nation two silver candlesticks valued at 400 d. and with inscription, carried to him by the two curators, one of whom was Moraeus. (CND-V 12; ACSD 15)

May 3, 1703, Jasper Swedberg ordained Bishop, when he delivered his farewell sermon, and in July he left for Brunsbo, being missed by all. (Tottie 2: 16)

Having first entered Eliezer and Jesper in the "university city, and as "novitiates in the Westmanland-Dala Nation." (ACSD 10A)

The date of his leaving was likewise determined by the date of the marriage of his daughter Anne, to the rising librarian and literateur, Eric Benzelius, which was celebrated on June 16. It was with this couple that Emanuel now made his home during the remainder of his stay in Upsala. (DH 4) ACSD

Probably they lived in a house belonging to Bishop Swedberg. See L 39.

On entering the University proper (S. perhaps in 1702), [six yews were required for the "Phil. grad.," and, therefore, Swedenborg was probably in some preparatory department.] the student had to undergo a deposition, so called, from his being considered as the pecus campi cui . . . cornua deponenda



(Enest. W.D.N. 2), to get his rawness knocked out - a mock examination, with questions designed to show his ignorance and certain ceremonies. Dean of Phil. Faculty was present to moderate and to limit attendance. Previous to this, the candidate was examined by the dean to determine his courses and then taken to the Inspector to be enrolled, at fee of 2 dl Smt. (UUH 1:219-21; 2:2:135; En.VDN 2 seq., 21)

Dean, 2 marks or half a dollar; beadle, 2 marks for wine and six pennies for himself. Depositor 2 marks, retained in constitution of 1655. Must be in a public room; without masks; and without needless expense. The deposition could be avoided by a cash payment (En.WDN. 22), and so likewise the service in the Nation (Ibid. 26). (En. VDN 2:1:25)

See Enest. Westmanland-Dala Nation pp. 3-4, where a deposition in 1700 is described by an eye witness.

The number of students in 1703 was 1046. (UUH 2:2: 391-92)


The average number of entrances during Charles XII's reign was 219, and since the average stay was five years, this would make about 1,100. (Ibid. 353)

The average entrances for 1700-3 were about 230, which gives an average of 1150 students.

Swedenborg is entered in the University's Album of Students as "optimae indolis"; little exact information, however, is known concerning his studies. A recent Swedish writer [unintelligible word added to text] states that his bent for scientific studies was first wakened by Moraeus or by his father's neighbor Rudbeck. The probability is, he continues "that he was first interested in theology at home in the classics, and later in mathematics, astronomy and other sciences at the university, to which his own mind and E. Benzelius's counsel led him. He also came in contact with the Cartesian controversy.       (CND-V 17, 18)

Concerning his specific studies little is known beyond:

(a) The Curricula of the University, where he was entered under the department of philosophy

(b) The professors he mentions in his correspondence

(c) The books he owned.

The lectures were from 8 to 11 o'clock, in the summer, 7 to 11 and 1 to 4 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, each professor lecturing four times a week. Many were held in professors' houses. But the professors sometimes seem to have been remiss in Lectures, sometimes lecturing "no more then 30 times in 1/2 a year" (2 Bioz. Lex 82)         UUH 2.2:106-7)

Library was opened only on Wednesday and Saturday, from 1 to 4 p.m. (Ibid. 332)

Latin was the study which took most time, and the students were required to speak and write in that tongue. The lectures were all in Latin (until 1749), and most of them involved Latin textbooks, (Ibid. 163-4, 277)



The time Emanuel Swedenborg was in the university was its Golden Age of Latin. (UUH 2:2: 278)

The courses were: (Catalogus 1699-1708 [Eng. trans. in ANC])

History of Greece and Rome. Only Greek and Latin textbooks permitted.

The History of Sweden and neighboring countries was taught in Colleges.

In 1700, Professor Lund wrote in a preface to a translation of ancient Swedish Law, that the latter antedated and was the source of the ancient attic laws an the 12 tables. (UUH 2:2:207-8)

Philosophy Theor. Metaphysics and Logic. Texts: Aristotle, Stahl, Clauberg Frommius.

The analytics were sometimes directed against the Catholics and in general the lectures were designed as supports to Theology.

Phylosophy Practical. Ethics and Government. Texts: Aristotle, Cicero, Puffendorf, Grotius. (Ibid. 316)

This course was specially applied to Swedish government. (Ibid. 253-4)

Mathesis,* Mathematics (Euclidian). Arithmetic, Geometry (Euclid). (UUh 2:1:20)

* In the first Constitution of Upsala University, Mathesis was divided into three branches, Euclidean (Mathesis), Archimedean (Physics, optics, mechanics), and Ptomelaic (astronomy, building), I U.U. Hist. 222, 244. In the new Constitution of 1655, these were combined into two, the Euclidean and Ptomelaic (Ibid. 2/1/20). The word [Greek] properly signifies science, study, or discipline.       

Vallerius. Trigonometry, Statics, and Mechanics and Optics Music.

The professor was held by the Constitution, to use as application, surveying, fortification, building, etc. (Ibid. 312)

The air pump, barometer, and thermometer were introduced into Sweden in 1683, and Newton's Principia was brought to Sweden in 1708. (Ibid. 323)

Mathesis or Mathematics (Ptomelaic). Astronomy (Ibid. 231)

Elvius's Astronomy. The calendars', Trigonometry applied to Astronomy, Geography, ancient and modern. Planets, Comets, Sundials.

J. Upmark. Eloquence and Politics. Texts: Cicero, Pliny, Sallust, Tacitus, etc., and Lipsius, Politica. Also Grotius and Puffendorf.

Eloquence: Texts. 2 Curtius., Cicero, etc.

Poetry:       "       Horace, Virgil, Ovid

Greek:              "       Herodianus, Homer, Demosthenes, Aristophanes. New Testament. (Ibid. pp. 13, 14)



It was in the study of Latin and Greek that Swedenborg learned to appreciate the learning of Isaac Casaubon, who likewise was admired by Eric Benzelius for his edition of Theophrastus.

Oriental Languages: Hebrew, Chaldee, Rabin.

That Swedenborg studied something of Hebrew in Upsala (or at home) is indicated by his father's words in a letter written in 1715: "My son Emanuel is accomplished in oriental languages." (3 Doc. 742)

There were also masters in Dancing, Fencing, French, Italian, German, Spanish. (UUH 2:2:89. 346)

Each student was required to attend two lecture courses, one in Theology and one in Philosophy; absence being punished by one day in prison. (En. VDN 9)

In addition, there were many "Colleges" held by the professors for personal and more detailed instruction.

Among these may be included a course given by Librarian Eric Benzelius from 1704-9, on the History or Literature, including Hebrew and even a little Arabic. This was given in the library. It may be mentioned also that Eric Benzelius, Swedenborg's "second father," was specially diligent in encouraging the students to become proficient in mathematics. Compare Swedenborg's first letter to Benzelius, July 13, 1709. We have also Benzelius's testimony to the same effect where, in a brief autobiography, he says: "While it was my care to lead the young students who were under my inspection, I drew out their inclination to Mathesis, so also their private preceptors procured themselves a better insight into that subject; and the study of mathematics began to lift up its head." (UUH 2:2:263; SBL 81, 83; Benz. Brefw. XXII; IM pp. 2-7)

There were also Colleges giving more particular instruction in Mathematics and Geography (Elfvius and Vallerius); Art of Disputation, Swedish History (Torner); Sacred and Universal History; New Testament and Beginner's Greek; Duties of the Citizen (1703 by Castovius who taught that laws should receive the consent of the people); and versemaking.

It should be noted that Swedenborg, under the advice of Eric Benzelius, gave his special attention to Mathesis. (1 OQ 211)

Of the Professors mentioned by Swedenborg and with whom he seems to have been more or less intimate are:

John Upmarck (Rosenadler) his cousin-in-law, who was professor of Elocution and Poetry. From 1702-7, he lectured on Lipsius.

A brilliant professor - Jesper Swedberg's colleague and nephew and lifelong friend.

Per Elfvius, professor of Ptolemaic Mathematics, a skillful astronomer and a clever mechanic. Swedenborg appears to have heard lectures on the lunar eclipse which Elfvius observed on October 11. 1706. (U.U.Hist. 2/2/320



1 O.Q. 210) Judging from the many references he makes to him in his letters to Benzelius, Swedenborg seems to have had much love for and appreciation of Elfvius. (Letters 23-34)

Harald Valerius, professor of Euclidean Mathematics who also taught theoretical Music.

Lars Roberg, professor of Medicine, teaching Theories or Medicine, Chemistry, and Anatomy. Without dissections. A Cartesian. One can hardly avoid the conclusion that Swedenborg attended anatomical lectures see p. 278. (UUH 2:2:237; Alving. Genom sek. Upsala p.102)

L. Norrman (d. 1703), professor of Theology. (Sel. sent.)

In addition to these should be mentioned Fabianus Torner, professor of theoretical philosophy from 1704 on, who presided at Swedenborg's final disputation. He lectured on Logic with textbooks Aurvillius, Stahl, Fromvius, Aristotle, and Descartes. His lectures in Swedenborg's last year were a contrast of the Cartesian and Peripetetic Doctrine.

In 1704, F. Torner gave colleges an History of Swea.-Gothia. (UUH 2:2:266)

F. Torner was a lively, not very deep, but very tolerant man; an eclectic in philosophy. (Ibid. 313-4)

Swedenborg also must have taken music, perhaps from Prof. Vallerius; for his father was an enthusiastic cultivator of church singing. (Ibid. 356)

The course of the lectures is thus described by Enestrom in Constitutions of the Westmanland-Dala Nation, p. 7.

"The lectures began at 6 a.m. (7 in winter) and up to 7 Rhetoric or Latin was lectured; at 7 came Logic and Mathematics or Arithmetic and Geometry; 9-10 Theology.

"After dinner Theology from 1-2; Astronomy, 2-3; Physics, 3-4; Greek and Hebrew, 4-5

"Saturdays: Disputations 7-10 a.m., whenever there were no public disputations."

A picture of studies in Upsala during Swedenborg's time is given in a Roster set up for de la Gardie's 15-year old grandson., Count Oxenstierna by his tutor: (UUH 2:2:162)

"After morning prayer and reading of a chapter in the Bible, Hafenreffer's well-known textbook of dogma was read, the young man being required not only to repeat the principal definitions and divisions from memory but also, as against heretical sects, to confirm the main truths of the Christian by passages from Scripture.

"After breakfast, Julius Caesar was read, in which lesson not only was the language treated etymologically and syntactically but also the map was studied. As was always the custom at that time in the study of



Latin, authors' political and moral considerations were blended with the reading. The remaining time before dinner was used for chronology, i.e., historical tables.

"After dinner, the Count exercised his hand in fine writing and then went to hear old Olaf Rudbeck lecture on Fortification. After this, he wrote exercises in style for which Scheffer's work on Style served as a guide. Further, he repeated what he had read in Caesar and, moreover, read a piece from Curtius. The time remaining till supper was used in geography guided by the directions found in Hubner and possibly going on to Cellarius' Nova Hist. After supper the Count gave a summary relation of what he had done during the day. Wednesdays and Saturdays were occupied with Hafenreffer's Dogmatics, Sacred History, and Ecclesiastical Affairs according to Boxhorrius, also Arithmetic. On suitable occasions, the Count himself went through Puffendorf's Introduction to History and likewise his History of the Kings of Sweden," (Read NP '31: 435s, '32: 25, '33:164)

This perhaps reflects Swedenborg's courses, since he was probably under Moraeus as informatur until 1703 when the latter left for his travels. (See Biog. Lex. 82) Probably after 1703 when Moraeus left he was tutored by E. Benzelius or at any rate E. Benzelius directed the choice of his studies with his "counsel of assent". (Swed. to Benzelius July 13, 1709; see SBL 82) And we can well believe that Swedenborg's future appeal to experience and reality as against mere speculation was fostered or at any rate not discouraged by the learned librarian who held that a good understanding and the love of erudition were often more than being long at the University yea, much more than being lettered without civil experience (Anec. Benz. 84).

Indications of his studies are also given in some books known to have been his during this period:

Greek Lexicon Stephanus Sep. 14, 1700. This indicates that he could read Latin at this time.

A copy of Suetonius, stamped E.S. 1703 (Oct. 20)

Diodorus Siculus, Oct. 12, 1705, indicates advanced study of Greek.

Plotinus, 1705, indicates study of Philosophy. A gift from Er. Benzelius in 1705 on 2 - 12 (?Feb. 12 near Swedenborg's birthday, or Dec. 2)

1707 He possessed a book called "Via Devia; the by-way: misleading the weaker and unstable into dangerous paths of error by colourable shewas of apocryphal scriptures, unwritten traditions, doubtful fathers, ambiguous councells, and preden ad Catholike church. Discovered by Humphrey Lynde Knight London 1630." (ACSD 29A)

(A defense of Protestantism and an attack on Catholicism)

The signature (Em. Swedberg 1707) is on the flyleaf of this thick 12 mo vol. Its whereabouts is unknown.



Indicates both E. Swedenborg's studies in English and against the Catholics.

(Sir H. Lynde 1579-1636 puritan controversialist. Severe enemy to papists. The above was a companion volume to Via Tuta - to the true ancient and Catholic faith (of the Church of England) 1628 replied to by a Jesuit in Via Tuta (1631) and by another in A Pair of Spectacles for Sir H. L. to see his ways withal (1631). (Dictionary of National Biography)

It may be noted that in a fatherly letter to the Westmanland-Dala Nation which Jesper Swedberg sent from Brunsbo, November 1703, he advises the young men "to learn the English language ...it has a close relation with our tongue and so is soon learned." (CND-V 14)

Swedenborg must also have read much in Isaac Casanbon. (OQ I:207)

Of his scholastic life in the Westmanland-Dala Nation, we learn that he sometimes took part as opponent or respondent in private disputations.

These theses or disputations were submitted to the dean eight, days before delivery and then announced on the door of the college. Those absent at the disputation were noted.       (En.VDN 7)

Jesper Swedberg established these disputations in 1697, when he became Inspector, on which occasion he stated that owing to the many occupations he could entertain none but theological subjects since he was familiar with these; in 1699, however, it was decided to have also disputations on moral alternating with the theological disputations and this continued until many years after Swedberg left the University.       (Ibid. 52-3)

The custom was that the subject of the disputations should be taken in order, chapter by chapter, from a theological and moral textbook in common use. The textbook for the theological disputation was Matthias Hafenreffer (1561-1619) Loci Theologici seu Compendium Theologiae Coelestis (Tub. l601) - the textbook used by one of the theological professors (N.Phil. 1931. 438). The second reading of this was commenced by the Westmanland-Dala Nation in 1703 and continued to 1720 (first reading 1697-1703). The textbook for the disputations on Morals was Samuel Puffendorf's two books De Officiis hominis et civis 1673, the first reading of which occupied 1699 to 1717.

The procedure was that the president and one of the seniors defended a chapter or paragraph which was then spoken to by the opponents. The meetings began with an oration and were ended with a prayer. The speeches, of course, were all in Latin.

1704 Nov. 4, Swedenborg was appointed opponens in a disputation on the Providence of God from Hafenreffer, which took place on March 18, 1705. This is the only theological disputation Swedenborg engaged in - and it is on a subject which afterwards greatly interested him. (CND-V 20; ACSD 20; NCL '03:531)

Cf. his dream of June 20, X 21, 1744, wherein his father tells him the small treatise he had written on Providence was the best. (R.P. p. 317 note) (2 U.U. Hist. 363 - Note on Promotion day, June 1, 1705, Jesper S. made D Th in absentia)



1706, April 7, he is Respondens in a disputation on Puffendorf's chapter on Conjugal Duties lib 2/2. (NCL '03:531)

In this chapter, we find sentiments uttered by Swedenborg many years later in his work on Generation and in Conjugial Love. See Puffendorf        2/2 S2 p. 474, S4, 477, S6, 484.

1706, October 31, he was opponens extraord. in a disputation on Puffendorf's chapter 3, lib. 2, On the duties of Parents and Children. See Puffendorf 2/3/S10 p. 507, as to children asking father's consent to Marriage.

After the disputation, the minutes of the Nation record that on the same day His Magnificence (Rector Palmroot) stated that Herr Emanuel Swedenborg had offered to take the part of praeses at the next disputation which is to be on The Law of Nature (? fin Puffendorf Lit. - I. c. iii), which offer his Magnificence favored, but for the rest left it to the consent and approval of the members. It was asked whether it had formerly been customary that any of the juniors had been praeses; it was answered that there were one or two examples of this. But since some thought that this would be something too close to the seniors who, according to the Constitution, alone were eligible, and, moreover, some disorder would thereby be established in that many of the juniors would want to take the office, nothing was done but Peter Aroselius was elected Praeses. (CND-V 20)

       NOTE: According to the Constitution, there could be only

24 seniors who were elected. They were to be praeses at

disputations and were elected from among the juniors less for

the time they had been students than for their good conduct,

advance in studies and their age. (Ibid. Constit. II. XXVI;

En. V-DN 24)

On the present occasion, Swedenborg's friend Peter Aroselius was appointed president for the next disputation.

1707 October 31, E. S. was an extraordinary opponent at a disputation on Jus Naturae based on Puffendorf's chapter on conjugal duties. Aroselius did not preside at this meeting. (ACSD 28a)

In 1700, Swedenborg's first literary piece was printed, being a marriage ode on the occasion of the marriage of John Kolmodin, Pastor of Nysatia to Beata Hesselia, May 27, 1700. (photo in ANC) (ML '02:298. tr.183)

Kolmodin was the son of Israel Kolmodin (1643-1709) who had co-operated with Jesper Swedberg in the Hymn Book. (April 1700)

Beata Hesselius - Swedenborg's cousin.

                                   Andrew Bergius

Sarah m.                            Mary Bergius m.

       Jesper S.                            ------------Hesselius

       (stepmother of E.S.)

                                          John.              Beata etc.

                                          b. 1687



                                                                                                         Nov. 27

November 17, 1700, Swedenborg's verses to Nottman in his published disputation on the beginning of Christianity in Livonia. (OP 3; tr. ACSD 12)

How of old, Livonia found God's grace

Is told by Nottman in this learned work.

But how from wrath of God it may be saved

--Ah! here needs greater art;

                     God save our King

(In October 1700 Charles XII had sailed for Livonia preparatory to his victory at Narva over the Russians who had attacked Estland.)

On November 27, 1707, we have Swedenborg's first Latin production, being a congratulatory verse to Benedict Bredberg - printed in the latter's Disputation on Astronomy: (Copy in ANC) (OP 4)

"Friend Benedict, why leavest thou the earth, to fix thy sight

Upon the stars sublime? thy gaze upon the planets?

Perchance the love of camps ethereal doth draw thee on

To search with quickened mood the shining stars;

To mete with cunning skill the Olymphian field.

Then prosper, friend, born 'neath a happy star,

In work so well commenced. And lighten

With the clear gaze of thy mind, the starry pole.

As flames need not the lume of fiery light,

So those who dare the stars, which pay their votary in

                                          Heaven's rich coin

Need not our pious prayers. Yet this I pray:

The image of a brighter pole gladden thine eyes

When God at last doth raise thee

To regions high above the stars."

                                   "With hearty congratulations

                                          Em. Swedberg"

Benedict M. Bredberg was the son of Skara pastor. He dedicated his Disputation to Archbishop Benzelius and Jesper Swedberg as "Maecenas and patrolis."

In 1709 he published a Latin poem: Patriae planctus et Lacrimae, etc. The Groans and Tears of the Country at the funeral of Eric Benzelius (father of Swedenborg's brother-in-law) Archbishop and Prochancellor, who was buried in Upsala Cathedral 1709, May 18.

The publication was anonymous, but a copy in the Royal Library is signed "Em. Swedberg" in the writing of Dan Tilas, a contemporary of Swedenborg and a great bibliophile. Then there is the fact that it was published in Skara, 1709. (ACSD 37)




The Groans and Tears

of the country at the funeral or a man once in the great confidence of his Sacred Majesty, namely, the most Reverend and most excellent Doct. Eric Benzelius, the most eminent Archbishop of the Kingdom of Sweden and Prochancellor of the Royal. Academy of Upsala, when, with the groans of all good men his funeral took place in the Cathedral temple of Upsala on the day of St. Eric,* 1709.

* May 18

Woe me! Whither Benzelius? Loved father, who in thyself

Wert like a chariot and a mounted host.
Ah thou, erstwhile so great, where art thou? Alone are left libations,

Tears, sobs, groan, kisses, due rites, the last farewell.
I, who was proud of the Prince of sacred rites,

Now shower his tomb with my tears.
Follow then the sombre bier, ye sorrowing Camenae,

Follow, with wands reversed, ye pious Muses.
But thou, Upsala, more than others, grieve o'er a loss so great,

O'er both thine own calamity mingled with mine and, over mine.
Where 'er piety is found, pour forth your mourning tears;

The Prince of Muses hath gone before his day:
Gone before his day! I do not blame you, sisters

Ye have spun the threads, I know - I love them not thus short.
Yet premature had seemed this death,

Else his long day had reached beyond Pylian Nestor's
Woe me! where now are Benzelius's palms, outstretched to heaven?

With these had he stayed the great deeds of the Father.*
And as the King's sacred youth, he helped with lore and counsel

So helped he with his prayers, the arms, the MAN.**
What merit lies in me? No marble needs, nor tablets;

Thy merit's monuments are men where e'er they live.
On thee, now dead, myself shall scatter lillies, flowers;

To thee, myself shall be the mourner, pyramid and monument
Before mine eyes e'er present will - remain thine image,

Those hoary locks, that countenance, those eyes, that life.
Ah! brought to the grave is that comeliness, that stately form,

Those flashing eyes, that life.
Brought to the grave thy spotless breast, that sacred fane

The common tryst of Virtues, Graces, Muses of the Sicilean choir.
And in that grave are likewise buried many hopes,

But, oh! Let not my hope, I pray, be buried with them.

* Namely, Charles XI.       
** Namely, Charles XI in his battles.
*** Benzelius was the tutor of Charles XII, in theology and Church History.



Anxious, I turn my weeping eyes now here, now there,

From whence shall grief like mine at lest be assuaged?
Would that I might lay me down, and one like Him rise up,

From whom a cure might be expected for this ill!
And now in short, it but remains to seal the tombstone with a verse.,

And so I long would cry, with groaning voice: Farewell.


Here lies Benzelius, cased in a narrow urn,

Than whom, in things divine, Sweden hath none so great.
Dost ask his titles? Reaching all honors

He, by his name, hath passed all eulogies.                                                 
Dost seek his virtues? Ever was he free from miry stain;

And of his age, the star, the norm, the gem.


It has frequently been asserted that Swedenborg took a degree, but this is not the case. The end of the course in Philosophy seems to have been perhaps a licentiate (Phul. Cand. UUH 2/2/l35) - the B.A. degree is not mentioned in Upsala University History - meaning that the student is qualified to try for a Master's degree which required three or more years' study. But the latter, and also the Doctor's degree was given only to those who were going into professional life and only after a "Preliminary Theological" examination. (NJMag- 1884:597; UUH 2:1:32; 2:132-33)

Yearly examinations were required by the University's Constitution but were generally not given except to stipendiaries. The final examination was more or less informal as suited the professors. We have the following account of an examination in 1706: (UUH 2:2:132)

After he had written privately for three professors and had been passed by them, he, with eight others, was called by the dean to be proved in the presence of seven professors. After an hour, he was treated by the professors with sugar and Rhine wine from 4 to 7 p.m., while the others were being examined. Three days later he was called to a "rigorous examination" before all ten professors when he did a little bit of poetry for one (because he had not attended that professor's colleges on Poetry and the latter had threatened he'd not forget this in the examination.) The examination lasted two hours with five other professors and four professors passed him without examining. This examination was for the degree of Master.       (Ibid. 2:2:136)

Another account in 1715 says of the "rigorous examinations": After hearing a speech on Metaphysics from one professor, he was asked by another as to the definition and division of universal history and the duration of the Roman Empire. A third asked whether ethics and politics (in Aristotle) were the same; to define Politics, the analytic method, the highest good, moral virtue, and to give the number of the moral and intellectual virtues; to define Law in general, the law of nature, duty. A fourth asked, What are the branches of Mathematics. What are pure and mixed Mathematics. The difference between Astronomy and Astrology? The object of Astronomy. The number of the planets and of the fixed stars,


[1709 June

and why so called. The names of the more important astronomical systems and which is the best. The solar and lunar year, the sun's a cycle and the moon's. The epacts, and how known. The Julian period, and when it ended. A fifth professor, handing him Virgil, asked him to open Book I and answer: What is the argument of the book? What kind of verse, and what is the subject; whether epic and heroic poetry are the same, and why they are so called: How many are the better Caesuras (the candidate could look at the book with its notes). A sixth professor had him explain grammatically and philologically the Greek text of the first verses of Acts 27, and the Hebrew text of Genesis 3 and a bit from the Psalm. The dean passed him without examination and two professors were absent. At the end he was passed. This was also for a degree. (UUH 2:2:136-7)

As a part of the examination, there was a Disputation on a subject chosen by the student and which was to be publicly defended by the student under the presidency of a professor of the Faculty under whom the student had studied. (Ibid. 2:1:23)

The disputations commenced at 7 or 8 a.m. and must not last over four hours. The President opened the disputation with a few words and then the opponents were allowed an hour each, first the ordinary and then the extraordinary - usually professors.       (Ibid. 2:2:130)

As to the nature of the disputations, they seem to have been in effect examinations by the opponents.

In Swedenborg's case, the opponents were Ryselius, and Unge (who married Swedenborg's sister Catharine). The extraordinary Opponent was

"his father the Bishop J. Swedberg". (Copy of Disputation in Upsala Lib.)

The disputations must be printed at the student's cost. According to the recorded cost of a disputation in 1707, 106 pages at 400 d.K. mt (-133 S.mt) Swedenborg's (62 pages) must have cost over 200 K.zt. Consider in this connection that a professor's yearly salary was 2,100 K. mt; and student's board was about 4-1/2 K.mt. a week.                                                                                    (Ibid. 2:2:128)

Moreover, after the disputation, the author or respondent must invite his comrades to a feast, called "Disputation-ol." It is probable, however, that Swedenborg's feast was held at his home where his father was then visiting, and where, but a few days previously, the Westmanland-Dala Nation had met to listen to a talk by their late beloved Inspector.                            (Stroh 111: 39)

Swedenborg chose for his disputation a commentary on certain maxims by Seneca and Publius Syrus, the actor, and perhaps others. The full title of the printed disputation is:

Q B V (Quod bene vertat) (May success attend it). "Select

Sentences by L. Annaeus Seneca and Publius Syrus the Mime,

and perhaps also of others, with the annotations of Erasmus

and the Greek version of Jos. Scaliger, Illustrated by notes,

which Emanuel Swedberg, with the consent of the Faculty of

Philosophy, modestly submits to public examination under the

presidency of Fabian Torner, Professor Regius and Ordinarius

of Theoretical Philosophy: In the large Gustavian Auditorium

(Wed) June 1, 1709" (Ed: 1 orig: 2 Tafel 1841; 3 Facsim.

1910). (NCL '10:844)



It has been denied that Swedenborg is the author of this disputation, but falsely; see Upsala University History 2/2/124-5.

In choosing this style of Disputation - an extremely rare one, as the disputation usually assumed to be learned treatises on scientific or other subjects - Swedenborg followed the example of his father whose first disputation, in 1681, was a Comment on Cato's De Moribus, and whose graduation disputation, in 1682, was The Similitudes of Demophilus and his Pythagorean sentences with the version and notes of Holsten, and with moral observations by Jasper Swedberg. This fact, and also his father's presence at the disputation, Swedenborg refers to in the opening words of his disputation, namely, in the dedication "to my well beloved father."


"To my dearly loved father, Jesper Swedberg, Doctor of Sacred Theology and renowned Bishop of the dioceses of Skara, ever prosecuting his work with devotion of mind and with every observance of duty.

"Just as, in common life, nothing is more sacred, nothing more delightful than not only to revere the footprints of our ancestors and parents, but also, so far as possible, with grateful imitation to follow them, especially when they lead us along the path of virtue, so, from this work which has lately been enjoined on me, I feel no little emotion and pleasure, arising chiefly from the fact that I am permitted to compose these first fruits, the commencements of ingenuity, in the image of my father's work; to progress from my first age to the deeds of the author of my being; and to resemble thee, my Father, in writings as well as in mind. To recognize this gladness born in my breast and heart, no more opportune occasion could be desired by me, on which to appear in public than a time when thou couldest be present and be witness of the genius and the footprints which of old were thine, and which now are freshened in thy son; a time when thou who art both beloved and gracious may be present at the rehearsal of studies which in thy embrace and in thy bosom have grown up and am daily cherished and continually mature. Receive, therefore, with benign, countenance, this, the determination of my mind, and the due tribute of my respectful obedience; receive this offering, begotten, as it were, of thine own good deeds, an offering which can take its merit only from thee, beloved Father, and which here gratefully points to thee and reveres thee as its author and composer. Would that there were space to satisfy my desire to expatiate on thy gracious deeds, beloved author of my being, then surely there would be no sparing of the praise that I would expend on thy merits, no sparing of labors on the praises, and in the labor no sparing of nightly toil. But since thou wouldst choose rather that thy gracious deeds be recognized by thy son's tacit veneration and respect than that they be proclaimed by public voice and herald's trumpet, in this also will I bow down to thee and will take refuge in that which alone is left me, - prayers and the pious supplications and outpourings of my mouth, and this with the greater ardor in that it can scarce ever more behoove me to approach the threshold of heaven with supplications, ant lowly to draw near to the knees of the Almighty, then when it concerns thy business, sweet Father, and thy prosperity. First, then, give humble thanks to God, thrice most High, that



He has graciously and happily prolonged for us thy years even to the present point of time;* that He has mercifully given thee the use of light, and us the use of thy light; and finally, since thy years with rapid strides are now verging to advanced age, I and many others do commit and entrust to the care and protection of that same High God thy old age, the unchanging ripeness of thy days and the token of grave years, thy snow-white locks, thy wrinkled brow. Live then long and happy according to our prayers, nay, above all our prayers and extend thy years beyond our own days. It remains only to say with the Romans:

* Bishop Swedberg was then 56 years old.

"Jupiter increase thy years at the expense of ours" [cf. Ovid, Fast I, 613]711

Dearest Father

       Thy most obedient Son.

                     EMANUEL SWEDENBORG

                     (He was then 56 years old)

After this follows a Greek poem by "Rhyzeliades," presumably A. O. Rhyselius. This Rhyselius, the future bishop and author, was Swedenborg's senior by eleven years. As a boy he had studied in Skara and later in Upsala, where in 1704-5, he lodged in Eric Benzelius's house together Emanuel Swedenborg. He was evidently on terms of intimacy with the Swedberg family, for when he received his master's degree, his master's cap of gold-colored moire was made and presented to him by Emanuel Swedberg's younger sister Hedwig, then seventeen years old, who later married her brother-in-law's brother, Lars Benzelius. (J. Helander, Bishop A.O. Rhyzelius, pp. 38, 49)

"An Eudekasyllabus"* to Herr Emanuel Swedenborg, a youth of surpassing genius, conspicuous by the highness of his birth and the glory of his learning, when he comments in a public dissertation on the mimes of Publius Syrus: (See Intellectual Repository 1842:149.)

* Each line of R's Greek poem is composed of 11 syllables. It is written in Doric.       

O youthful offspring of a noble sire

Ripe branch of the muses of music

Famed when thou followest thy father's steps

And new commencement of the men of old.

Rightly to interpret their lettered works

To shed on them a good and pleasing light.

And thou I am persuaded will become a skilful man

An everlasting ornament to thy land

And of Christ. And the sacred muses

Ever give golden hope of thee; e'en in the meanest trickery

The mimes of Publius Syrus's keen wit

Are now revealed, made plain in thine

And coming forth from thy comments

In these first-fruits is active

A better fruit, more glorious joy

The firm desire of life, even of bitter fate

Be thou nightly carried on, according to custom

The high-throned king of all

Desires thy labors to be ever present

Thus, O Swedberg, so aspiring,

I wish thee well.



The notes give evidence of a great familiarity with the classics and their various learned commentators and of a knowledge of Greek and Roman History and Mythology, Swedish History, the Bible, and a good and clear perception of moral truths. Among the hundreds of authors quoted, we note the Jewish writer Philo, the Christian Fathers, Augustine, Jerome, and Lactantius, the scholars Erasmus, Grotius and Lipsius, and the Frenchman Rabelais.

We may note in this connection that Swedenborg in all his reading in Upsala made it his practice to make classified notes having in view the use of his reading in future studies. (OQ 201)

The following excerpts will give an idea of the work:

"Since these theatrical witticisms captured the favor and applause not only of the Caesars but also of a distinguished people, my mind is in no doubt but that, for the same reason and in no less degree, you also, dear Readers, will not only give assent to my endeavors but will also give them your favor. Nor shall I be indignant if to some, my work is displeasing; for there are many persons who are like those little animals which open their mouth and bring forth bile, and this without any exciting cause but from mere habit; and, therefore, that man is deservedly praised who is unpleasing to such face-makers. In a word, "To him who walketh toward things honorable all contempt is itself to be condemned" (Seneca, Epis. 76) [Ed. 1707 p. 52; Bohn p. 251]."

On the maxim "From a lover thou wilt redeem anger with tears," he writes: "The quarrels of lovers are aptly compared to the sparks which a drop of water will extinguish ... But flee from the blandishments of those who are sedulous plotters, and of young women who pursue after men, and you will escape both anger and grief and their attendant ills" (n. 3).

He ends his reflection on the maxim "Any rumor looking to calamity prevails" by observing: "Certainly we mortals are the more prone to believe things unworthy because we ourselves are evil and are deserving of evils" (n. 5).

On "A little money makes a debtor, a large sum an enemy," he writes: "A debt of a small sum of money is a testimony to the creditor not only of an unbroken and complete friendship but also of good feeling. On the other hand, those who are too heavily indebted, being unable to pay, labor to elude the debt by various arts, by repudiation, dissimulation, concealment; and, in any event, by depreciating it and putting off payment; and, if they cannot manage matters thus, you will find them your greatest enemies. The same sentiment is thus put forth by Tacitus: 'Benefits are delightful so long as it seems possible to make a return, but when they go much beyond this, then hatred is the return instead of thanks' [Annals iv. 18] We may also here adduce the saying of Plautus: 'With a talent I bought me an enemy and sold a friend."'

On "Another's possessions are more pleasing to us; ours to others" he writes: "The soldier finds pleasure in the dress of the citizen; the citizen, in the coat of the soldier; the great frequently execrate their own burdens; pedlars complain of the doubtful hazards of business and of the cheapness of their wares; and, speaking generally, we all admire and revere the manners, the wit, the wars of the ancients, and 'all things merged in black obscurity';



if, for instance, we should come across some remains of ancient record, stones half eaten away, tablets roughened by mold and age, musty and worm eaten manuscripts; if we should come across a coin of Codrus, a Bellenian tunic, slimy ruins, and things more ancient than chaos and the Saturnian ages; or if we should hear of such things in conversation; how much, I ask, would we esteem, revere, and desire such things? And yet; new things not only dispute excellence with the ancient but frequently carry off the prize. Nevertheless, I think the Fates will so revolve that the next age will on the other hand become the worshipper of ours."

"Thou shalt love thy father, if he is just; if not, thou shalt bear with him." "Publius says: 'just' meaning kind and human, oh, how piously, truly, greatly! Would not the theater resound with applause at so beautiful a precept? Deserve then goodness of thy parents by sober piety, love and respect, for to them thou owest life and thy very self. As the gods ought they to be worshipped, according to Philo's mind, as expressed in his book on the Decalogue at Exod. XX: 12, so shouldest thou see in thy parents something godly; hence, Grotius calls those [text unintelligible] as it were, gods. Aristotle attributes to parents divine honor. If thou hast had parents, yet revere them, yield to them, bear them; indeed, uprightness, the obligation of the children increases; it does not make it. Those who have studied Latin know that in the Latial speech emperors and others were worshiped under the named Parent."

On "It is not proper to injure a friend, even in fun," he writes: "Here the comic poet is at issue with both tragedians and comedians. He justly criticizes the license of those who think that witticisms; and jokes without sincerity against a friend are allowable, and yet in friendship nothing is more hoary and ancient than a sincere countenance, candor of speech, and gracious feelings ever bared, as it were. To the devil, then, with those jocular wranglings, that eloquence vomiting poison and bane, wherewith certain artful men of the utmost urbanity exercise their biting and pointed wit, and seek friendship. The late Norrmann of blessed memory speaks more fully: 'Witticism should not be filled with ambiguous and biting figures or with spite and envy.' Confer if you will Morrhof; also 'To be malignant is not fun' in the fragment subjoined to Seneca. Add, I pray, the notes of my loved Parent in Dist. Cato 2.2 and Camerarius Med. Hist. I.92: Let us sweetly mingle duties and admit friends with our whole heart, for 'it is germane to the beauty of speech to present oneself ever affable, ever friendly, easy and accessible to all' - to use the words of the great Upmarck whom we revere as the light of our Athens."

To the mime "When a woman is openly evil, then at last she is good," Swedenborg first quotes the meaning of this mime as interpreted by Erasmus, namely: "Woman is a painted and deceitful creature, and she is least harmful when openly evil. Thus, he shows that no woman is good." Swedenborg continues: "The feminine sex was ill-reputed by many of the ancients on account of cunning and deceitful arts; nor is this unknown in public places. One knows also that the office of our actor was sometimes to make pleasantry by reviling, and to capture the applause of the theater with his scattered witticisms. Meanwhile, it is plain that secret snares and supressed hatreds are more injurious than those that are professed."



"He is twice slain who perishes by his own weapons. There is nothing more witty in our author's pantomime. The mime is confirmed by the examples of Pompey, Caesar, Darius, Cicero, etc., who gave their neck to their proteges... This sharp wit seems to be borrowed from the Aesopian apology concerning the eagle, which, when pierced in the breast, examined the wound and, as it discerned the feathered arrow, 'Strange,' it said, 'my own wing has given me to destruction.' Or of the countryman who cherished the torpid serpent to his bosom. Or of the horse to his rider who was driving him to his destruction. Or of the ax that chopped the wood: 'I perish,' said the wood, I am the cause of danger to myself.'"

"He twice conquers who in victory conquers himself. Our Goths deserved the praise of the ancients for this double victory; as from Augustine in The City of God, and from John Loccenius in his Swedish History; likewise in the Swedish History of Gustavus Adolphus. The Romans felt different as to themselves; as Seneca feels concerning Caesar, Pompey, Marius. 'Marius (he says) led an army, ambition led Marius.'"

"When one spares the evil he injures the good." "That the connivance of a prince is more injurious than his severity is manifest from the fact that by reason of it both the evil and the good are incited to evils as by a stimulus. 'The greatest allurement to sin is the hope of impunity,' says Cicero. Therefore, Sallust urges 'that ye destroy not the good by excusing the evil.'"

"To imitate the words of goodness is greater than malice. Such smooth and honeyed speakers, who speak, however, in accordance with the injurious words of parasitical, double-dealing, and crafty men, is denounced as Erebus itself and the jaws of Avernus by no few number of authors; for such men are most like those who, while flattering their enemy, offer him a poisoned cup. Of Nero, the most wicked Phaethon of the world and of men, we read that he flattered his mother to the end that he might cover his matricide by decent and fine words. Similar frauds are found in Tiberius, the Gracchi; hence, they are called "Pelasgian" and 'Tiberian arts. 'Let then our lips be in harmony with our mind and not crafty, and insidious; let them be without paint, a veil, covers, and let them not imitate (as our author finely puts it) the words of goodness."

"A good mind, when injured, is more seriously angered. Cicero says that it is a characteristic of good men to be somewhat irascible. It is justly provided by the Deity, that the anger of the upright should be sharper, lest innocence and simplicity be troubled by the unrighteous. Their anger is more serious because under it lies a juster cause, and it does not rage unless it has been long stirred up. Yet it subsides and falls back more quickly than it has become fired, as our author has just pointed out."

"We bear with accustomed vices and do not reprove them. We are not accustomed to attach punishment to public and general crimes. When vices are turned into custom, there ceases to be room for remedies; for, as Seneca observes: 'When error has become public, it holds the place of righteousness among us.' Therefore, no punishment is publicly proclaimed against the haughty, the luxuriant, the sordid, the imperious, the spiteful, hypocrites, talebearers, the passionate; lest, more frequently than is just, revenge be exercised on faults which common error has made familiar."



"Do not speak ill of an enemy but think ill. To conceal plots against enemies is a matter of prudence - an act which Livy praises in the Sabines, to wit, that they did not reveal their plans until war had been brought in. Here we are reminded by the gentiles, that we injure not our enemies by curses if we are unable to obtain reprisal; but the holier philosophy of Christ rises higher, teaching that we should not think ill."

Swedenborg did not finish the work, though from the catchword on the last page, and from a statement in his introduction, it appears that he contemplated finishing it; probably intending to publish a book of the size of his father's graduating Disputation.

An extended review of this work was published in 1842 when the writer compared Swedenborg's earliest work expounding the obscure sentences of Latin authors to his later theological expositions. (I.Rep. 1842; 61, 147)

After defending his Disputation, Swedenborg returned to his father's house in Brunsbo. Here he prepared for a foreign journey in continuation of his studies, his father having applied for a passport while he was in Stockholm (May 22, 1709) and which presumably was granted. It was doubtless at this time that Swedenborg had printed at the Skara Printshop his lines to Archbishop Benzelius. The Skara Printshop had been established by Bishop Swedberg shortly after his arrival in Skara.       (ACSD 38; 3 Doc. 129-30)

Probably at the same time Jesper Swedberg published the sermon which he had preached to the students of the university on his last appearance in the pulpit of the cathedral before taking up the office of Bishop of Skara. The preface of the published book is dated "Brunsbo, July 18, 1709." The title of the sermon was "The Rule of Youth and the Mirror of Old Age," the text being Ecclesiastes XII "Remember thy Creator now in the days of thy youth." Swedenborg had been one of the large audience of students who listened to this sermon, and it was doubtless with a revival of pious and filial remembrances that he wrote a Latin translation of the Swedish poem by his father which prefaced the printed sermon. This translation, while included as a part of the Bishop's printed volume, had yet its own title page: "The Swedish song written by my beloved Parent, Jesper Swedberg, Doctor and Bishop of Skara, and entitled Ungdoms, Regal och Alderdoms Spegel, from Ecclesiastes C.XII- Set forth in Latin verse by his son Emanuel Swedberg, Skara, 1709.

The translation was preceded by an original verse by the translator:

Draw near, ye men; draw near ye youths and children fair;

Draw near O thou who fain wouldst know the time to come;

And ye, with whom the years are well-nigh spent, draw also near;

So likewise ye whom bowing age has not yet pressed with heaviness.

Hushed be the changing fates, the birds of heaven, the oracles of men and strife.

Here, from a greater Deity, doth Solomon declare the fates.

During his first weeks at home, besides these literary amusements, Swedenborg displayed that mechanical bent which indicates his practical nature, and which had so much influence on the firm mechanical side of his deep philosophy.



Within less then six weeks, he had so far learned from the bookbinder at Skara that he was able to bind three volumes in leather. His general curiosity had led him to the possession of an old coin, which he looks upon with suspicion because though in Eric's time, was inscribed "Sanctus Ericus" whereas Eric was canonized after his death.

For the rest, however, his thoughts are occupied mainly with his preparation for the expected foreign journey. Thus, in a letter to Eric Benzelius., dated July 13, he reminds his "dear Brother" of his offer to give him suggestions with regard to this journey. He then continues:

       [NOTE: For text of letter, see IM pp. 2-5. Original in

       Benzelius's Brefw. XXII]

"Were there also some letters to dear Brother's acquaintances in England or other kind offices, I would greatly desire them of dear Brother now, since I am not likely to remain here more than 14 days, and this for the purpose of waiting for dear Brother's answer concerning this my journey. It would also be my wish, through dear Brother's recommendation, to become acquainted with some of those who are in the Collegio Anglicano (the Royal Society) wherein there are said to be 21 assessores, that I might thereby profitera (make advance) somewhat in mathesis; or, which is said to be their chief pursuit, in Physica and Historia naturali.* Since I have always wished to obtain some use and improvement in the studier (studies) which I chose with dear Brother's advice and approval, therefore, I have also thought it advisable early to choose for myself some certain purpose which, in time, one will achieve; to this, one could also bring in a large part of that which one observerar (observes) and reads in other countries; I have therefore done this in all the reading that I have done thus far. And now, at my departure, I have first undertaken a certain collection (in all that concerns Mathesis,) in order gradually to increase and perfect it; to wit, de novis inventis et inveniendis Mathematicis (concerning new things discovered and to be discovered in Mathematics) or, what is almost the same thing, de incrementis Matheseos intra unum vel duo secula (concerning the additions made to mathesis within one or two centuries) which will extend to all partes Matheseos;** this, moreover, is likely to be of advantage to me during my journey, since I can bring into it all that I shall become observerande (observant of) in mathesis. . . .This therefore being my purpose, if it does not displease dear Brother, I ought to expect great help and support therein from dear Brother; and also that he will at least write to me what dear Brother finds in this connection. It would be very useful to me if some one urged Director Polhammar to communicate his inventions before anything fatal happens to him; the mechaniken (mechanics) there would certainly be an adornment in materien (to the matter in hand). I have good subsidia (resources) in Morhofvii opera Posthuma*** and a good guide to authors."

* Namely, Astronomy, Optics, Physics, Statics, etc.

** The Royal Society governing council consisted of 21 members. Sw. uses the word assessores in the Swedish sense as meaning those entitled to a seat in a collegium or commission. (Hatton, A New View of London, 1708)

*** The posthumous work referred to is Polyhistor Literarium, Philosophicum et Practicum, Lubecae, 1708. The work, therefore, had come but recently to Swedenborg's attention. It is in effect a guide to authors and books in the different fields of learning, and gives special attention to the collection.



Later, in the same letter, he adds:

"If there should be any one to succedera (succeed) me in my room, then I would most respectfully beg dear Brother that the papers which were left there might be gathered together and laid for keeping in the vault, for among them lie some which I assembled for Publium Syrum and which I worked hard enough on."

Read Letters and Memorials of E.S., pp. 1-5.

Despite his anticipations for an early journey to England, Swedenborg was doomed to disappointment.

The battle of Pultava, in which Charles XII was so severely defeated by the Russians, was fought on June 28, 1709, the very time when Swedenborg was rejoicing in his school honors, but it was not until a month later that distorted news of the disaster reached Sweden, and it may be presumed that this news reached Skara soon after Swedenborg had despatched his letter to Eric Benzelius. (Fryx. 23:181; 24:62)

The country was seething with all sorts of rumors, but it was not until August that it was known that the King had escaped to Turkey, and that Chancellor Piper was a Russian prisoner. (Ibid. 63)

The greatest confusion reigned, for the government was without a head. Two parties developed, one wishing the government to be headed by Karl Frederick of Holstein (son of Charles XI's older daughter), and the other, that it be headed by Ulric Eleonora (Charles XI's younger daughter) for whom was planned a marriage with Prince Karl of Denmark. Neither party dared act without hearing from the King.       (Ibid. 64)

Added to this Denmark, egged on by Russia, now prepared to recover the province of Skane. Despite all past privations, new soldiers drilled, new war funds were raised, new taxes laid, forced contributions of money and grain; distillery was forbidden, and even part of the church tythes were seized by the government. And all this was gradually leading to the growth and strengthening of a party opposed to autocracy. (Ibid. 67-74s)

Under these circumstances, Swedenborg's journey to England was out of the question.

The Governor of Skane was Magnus Stenbok, loved of all the people because of his protection of them against official oppression. Influenced by the rumors of war with Denmark, Stenbok began preparations in the fall of 1709. He himself went around to the villages and addressed the people. It was impossible to prevent the Danes landing, but Stenbok laid up money and ammunition to meet them. The Danes landed near Malmo in November 1709 and were soon in Helsingborg, from which city they made successful advances to the opposite coast. The Swedish army consisted largely of Saxon prisoners who had taken Swedish service, and most of them went over to the enemy; also many of the Swedes, oppressed by their heavy burdens. By January, however, Stenbok had assembled at Vaxjo an army of 8,000 men, ill-clad and untrained. He called for more but except the three regiments ordered by King Charles, the people refused to join. (Ibid. 77-81)



In the middle of February 1710, Stenbok broke camp and on February 28, he attacked Helsingborg with 14,000 men and won a glorious victory. Skane was saved.

Swedes lost 800 killed and 2,000 prisoners

Danes       "       4,000 killed and 3,000 prisoners

              (Fryx. 24:82; La[text unintelligible] for Hemmet, 1899)

Despite Stenbok's victory, the Danes still persisted in their plans and Stenbok was obliged to go to Stockholm to raise new troops. In this, the government helped him, but to the displeasure of the King who wished the best troops sent to Pomerania. Charles's motto was "To be broken not to be bent" but the people were more concerned in the safety of the kingdom than in the prestige of the king. (Fryx. 24:95, 7, 152)

What with the consequent conscription, taxes law, exchange, and the conviction that the king, far from coming home or willing peace, was seeking Turkey's help to enter into a new war with Poland, the state of the country was truly miserable. Indeed, it may be wondered how a country could live through such terrible times. Certainly, Charles XII gave abundant proof of that extraordinary obstinacy which distinguished him in the other world; see Spiritual Diary 4741, where he is spoken of as "the most obstinate mortal on the face of the earth."

Swedenborg, while impatiently waiting for his foreign Journey, occupied himself as best he might - in bookbinding, music, and the varied occupations of an active and curious mind ambitious for knowledge.

He had undoubtedly learned to play the organ while in Upsala; for professor Vallerius was a noted musician and "director of music" in the University, and Bishop Swedberg himself was exceedingly fond of music. At any rate, by March 1710 Emanuel Swedenborg had so far progressed that he had been able to take the organist's place at the Cathedral. (UUH 2:2:78; 2 Tottie 270; OQ 1:203)

Another thing that greatly stirred his interest was the examination of the bones of a supposed giant which he found kept in the Cathedral.

His old tutor, John Moraeus, had commenced his foreign journey in 1703. In France he took the degree of M.D. and when he returned to Sweden in 1705, by the influence of Bishop Swedberg, was appointed Provincial Physician of Skara, and until 1709 lived with his uncle at Brunsbo. (SBL)

Soon after his arrival in Skara, he heard of some giant bones that had been turned up during an excavation for a well in Wanga Parish about 20 kilometers (15 miles) south west of Skara. Moraeus at once went to Wanga to inspect the excavations which were still going on, and in a letter to Eric Benzelius he describes the "ossa gigantes" that had already been dug up, and adds that when the work is finished all the bones would be sent to Skara.                                                                      (ACSD 2b; Lilljeborg, Ofversigt 61)

It was here that Swedenborg saw them, in the Fall of 1709; but to Swedenborg, fresh from his university studies, it at once occurred that their proper place was the University Museum. So, in February they were duly sent to Upsala where, after Examination by Professor Roberg, they were pronounced to be the bones of a whale.



Some years later, in 1719, Swedenborg refers to these bones as one of the proofs that formerly the flood covered Sweden. (H. of W. XII)

It may be added that in l823, Major L. Gyllenhaal sent to the Kungliga Vetenskapsakademien at Stockholm a vertebrae of another whale which he found in the same neighborhood, and it was he who identified the place where the "Swedenborg whale" had been found, namely, Glattestorp. (Lilljeborg, 62; KVA Handl. 373)

These bones, 51 in number, are now preserved in the Upsala

Zoological Museum. They are known as "The Swedenborg Whale"

and have been the subject of several learned brochures.

Photos of them are given in Lilljborg's Two Subfossil

Whales (Upsala 1867) and in Aurwillius, Der Wal.

Swedenborg's, Stockholm 1883. (LM p.9)

About the same time that these bones were being sent off, the immense distress in the country manifested itself in a small rebellion which came under Swedenborg's notice and which he describes in a letter to his brother-in-law of March 6, 1710. "Here, some time ago (he says), all the people were called up, and when the time came, the Wadsbo* people came to be gathered in a crowd,** where an unheard of excess (outrage) was committed on their own bailiff (Wahrenberg) whom they first handled roughly and then killed, and shot some 100 shots at him as a target, so that hardly anything whole was left of him. Afterwards, they would have had the pigs eat him up had not the pastor, Ericus Hago. Lundgren (1661-1715) the co-minister in Horn reprimanded them. Magister Johannez Faegraeus interfered but was threatened with the same fate if he would not hold his peace. Two peasants and one woman who expressed pity over this were also killed. The magistrate, Aurell, took flight to the above- mentioned Horn's rectory and in a dark room, in the cellar, but the place was surrounded and was searched in every corner; but they had to go back with their purpose unaccomplished. "Part of them have stationed themselves at Billingen (about 15 kilometers [5-1/2 miles] west of Skara) and have threatened with death those who will go further (i.e. to Skara); for the provincial judge, (Baron Gustav Soop [Soop blamed the clergy]) was compelled to give them all home leave, for they are heard to say that they had intended to treat all their officers whom they might have on the march in the same way. God grant there be no disturbance here of which, as it seems, there is much likelihood and cause." (OQ I: 203; 2 Tottie 53, 54; Sk. stifts Herda. 2:110)

* A place about 35 Kil. (22 miles) north west of Skara.

** This was at Binneberg, a village close to Horn.

This rebellion is noted by Fryxell who says that the murdered bailiff was known as an evil man and a bribetaker. But Fryxell wrongly puts the date as winter instead of spring. The mustering which occasioned the outbreak was for assistance for Stenbok but the men would go no further than their fathers, i.e., to Gotas Alf. They were later punished. (Fryx. 24: 154-55)



Poetry also occupied Swedenborg's time. In March 1710,* fired by the deeds of Stenbok's ragged army, he had printed in Skara four pages in folio form with the title "A Festal Applause for the Signal Victory which, by the grace and favor of God Most High; in the name and under the auspices of Charles XII, the Monarch of our North: by the prudence of most illustrious comrades, senators of his Sacred Majesty, Magnus Stenbok, Governor of the Province of Skane, won from the Danes at Helsingborg on 28th of February 1710."

* The date is indicated by the poem itself at the end.

This poem is said to be the best as it is one of the longest of Swedenborg's poems. It opens with a note of joy but not unmixed with a suggestion of battles that are yet to come. (I.Rap. 1842:81; OP. p. 43).

The voice of strife is stilled and in a measure war and weapons;

       And plaudits take their place with praise and prayer and sound of joyous lyre.

High to the stars the exultant voices rise

       And every place doth glow with fervor at the sound:

. . . . .

Charles is exalted equally with Stenbok:

       Charles by his gaze, Stenbok by leadership scattered the foes

              One by his arm, one by the terror of his name.

. . . . .

                                                                                                                              Great Victor, mount the chariot and the triumph lead

       Let palms be scattered, let the Muse chant her song.

                                                                                    Ah! mighty Warrior, had the men of old possessed thee

       They would, methinks, have set thee in heaven, a shining light.

. . . . .

The officers also receive their need of praise:

       And ye, great leaders of the Swedes who were his stay,                            Your names shall not in humbler tones be sung.

       Names which if writ on lasting tablet

              How great would be that tablet, fraught with such great glory.

. . . . .

Of the Danes he sings:

But lately left he Denmark's shore, a mighty host

       And now returns with but a few.

Soldiers and leaders, ill reliable

       Followed by fear and dread and with the dread comes flight.

. . . . .

He then turns to Charles in Turkey, around whom the hopes and fears of all Sweden centered:



The moon has nine times hid her face, and nine times come again

       Since Turkey's Lune received the Boreal sun.*

Then with diminished light, O Caesar, shone thy moon.

       And now it shines again, though with a borrowed light.

When he is absent from our land, our Sun has made provision that we wander not in shade        

       And so has given many stars to our loved land.

. . . . .

After the laudation of these lesser military stars, the poem ends with an appeal to Charles XII to return to his native land:

O Charles, hope of the Swedes! The Muses and thy land require thee.

       Our shrines, our orators, our priests cry loud this prayer:

Thy sister, the mother of thy father, the guardians of thy land

       All three do call thee back, and we would taste the fruit of this trine love.

Well known art thou, O Charles! From India's land to Afric's sunny shore.

       And yet by face scarce known to thine own land

Which stretches forth its arms thy form to enfold.

       And Caesars too shall comrade thee.

The ready sea will smooth for thee a bridge

       And quiet down her waves for thy return.

Phoebus will burst the clouds and give her light

       Rejoicing in her privilege of favoring thee:

And then the Muses new will sing, Ah! cometh our Apollo glorious!

       Ah! 'tis my prayer that your Apollo cometh soon;

O Charles, the month that sends thee here to be in person in thy native land,

       Let that month be a festal day, a sacred day forever.**

       * i.e., Since Charles had fled to Turkey in July 1709.

       ** A paraphrase of this poem is reprinted in 3 Doc. 1266s.

About the same time (March 10, 1710), Swedenborg wrote a short congratulatory poem to be printed in the thesis which his future brother-in-law Unge*** was going to Upsala to dispute. Jonas Unge was then Lector of Poetry and Eloquence in the Skara Gymnasium, and his purpose in going to Upsala was to obtain a magister's degree and so become competent for a theological lectorship. In this he succeeded. (SSH. 1:548-49)

*** Jonas Unge, 1681-1755. Unge was seven years older than Swedberg.

If haply I might mount on chariot swift,

       Unchecked by bending knee and lagging foot:

Then quickly would I flee these empty halls.

       These fields bereaved of groaning countrymen, these

                                                 Westgothian vales,

And would anew before Upsala's Muses stand,

       And in the Maeonian Choir take lowly part.



Then, Comrade, when thou walkest to the speaker's dais,

       I would be with thee to swell the plaudits with a willing hand.

When thou dost bare the holy shrine, the Sacred Tablets,

       Thy auditors are gladdened, and with joy give ear.

When thy tongue sets forth the inner treasures of thy mind,

       It loud proclaims that thou hast climbed Parnassus' Heights.

The fable runs that from the brain of Jove, Minerva came,

       But thou from holy Writ hast brought to light a greater work.

'Twas but a while ago that Gothland sent to Upsala the great limbs of a giant

       Which, lacking brain, lacked human ingenuity.

And now our fertile land sends forth another child.

       This strong in mental power, that strong in limb.

And now a happy guest, thou dost anew approach the Muses of

                                                 Upsala's halls.

       And I do prophesy they lend their favor to thy gifts of mind.

With thee, I cannot be, and yet, though absent, shall be at thy side.

       And in the city's midst be with thee, thy comrade.

Brunsbo, March 7


                                          EMAN. SWEDBERG (OP. 20- 21)

It is of interest to note that the subject of Unge's Disputation thesis was "The Consummation of the World." This he defines as being "the end of the world," or, according to the Greek, the "fullness of the Age" when there will be no longer an earth, and when the good will be in heaven, and the evil will burn in hell but without being burned up. The world will be destroyed not orivitively by the cessation of Divine "influx" but positively by fire though without leaving any ashes. The kind of fire is unknown. It cannot be elementary fire, for the elements themselves are to burn and therefore would be consumed. The new heaven and earth will not have corporeal place but will be "a certain spiritual spaceless and uncreated pu: nor will it be created but already is."

The "consummation of the age" also had place even before the Fall, for as men then went to the spiritual life without the intervention of death, so the world will pass away without conflagration, though in the judgment day conflagration will appear before the wicked as a type of infernal fire.*

* The Disputation was held on April 2d, and Rhyzelius was opponens. (Rhyzelius 56)

There will be noticed in Swedenborg's poem to Unge a certain note of longing to return to the old academic sphere, with the stimulating presence of the professors his friends, and especially of Eric Benzelius, his "second father."

The continued postponement of his journey, the lack of intellectual stimulus in the little town of Skara, probably also the lack of modern works on the natural sciences was keenly felt, and it was with some hope of relief



that Swedenborg at last heard of the possibility of studying mechanics with the great Polhem who, in 1698, had been appointed Director of Bersmechanica (without salary), a position which he retained till his death.        (Bring, Polhem, p. 35)

Polhem, in addition, had private manufacturing works at Stiernsund, about forty miles southwest of Falun, and here he was in the habit of receiving a few pupils. Polhem and his wealthy partner Stierncrona from whom the place was named, had settled here in 1700, and Charles XI gave them privileges for the manufacture of household utensils, clocks, looks, machines, iron tubes, bolts, nuts, etc., etc. (Ibid. p.105)

Swedenborg felt that at Skara he was wasting his time, and he longed for some change. The Bishop, therefore, led by Swedenborg's decided bent for mathematical mechanics, wrote to Polhem inquiring whether he would receive Swedenborg in his house as a student. (OQ. I:205)

Polhem answered in the negative. The Bishop seems then to have got his son-in-law Eric Benzelius, who knew Polhem personally, to write to Magister Troilius of Husby (about ten miles from Stiernsund), Polhem's pastor and friend,who saw Polhem on Sunday, May 29th, when Polhem finally agreed to board and teach Emanuel Swedenborg for 4 Rixdala a week - there was no inn in the place. Polhem, himself also wrote to Benzelius on July 16th. Polhem at that time had five children, from Margaret the oldest aged twelve to the youngest aged three.       (Bring, Polhem p. 101; ACSD 43A; Rosman, Polhems Slakt 55-6)

While those arrangements were going one, the subject of them had gone off, for he was in London on August 3d.

His departure from Sweden seems to have been very sudden and was perhaps due to a favorable opportunity of passage offering itself; for there were no regular passenger vessels to London, and opportunity must be taken when it offered. Doubtless also, if not mainly, it was due to Swedenborg's unwillingness to go to Polhem as a substitute for a foreign journey, for in his first London letter to Benzelius, dated October 13, 1710, he apologizes for not having obeyed his brother's counsel as to Polhem, and assures him that he "has not entirely renounced" the idea of going to the Director,

It must be remembered also that Swedenborg seems to himself, in part, have defrayed the expenses of his journey; but see Swedenborg's own account of this journey as contained in his letters to Benzelius and in a brief journal entry which he penned some twenty-five years later as an introduction to his Journal of his travels in 1736. He there says that "on the way to London, I was four times in danger of my life:
1. At an English sandbank in a dark fog, when all thought they would be lost because the ship's, keel was only 1 quateer from the bank.
2. From privateers who boarded us, and though one supposed they were Danes, they represented themselves as French.
3. From an English guard ship which on the next evening, from a report, supposed in the darkness that we were the same privateer vessel, and so a whole broadside was sharply-fired at us, but yet without special damage.
4. In London, right afterwards, I came into a still greater danger in that



some Swedes arrived at the ship in a yacht,* and they talked me into going with them to the city, when yet all on the ship were ordered to stay there for six weeks, for they had already learned that the plague had begun in Sweden. But since I had taken myself off from the quaremtin that had been ordered, I was sought after; yet I was let off from the rope, though with the reservation that no one else afterwards would escape if he ventured to the same thing." (NCL 1896:152, S. to King, 7/9/1720; Resebesk. 3; Cod. 88 p. 502)

* Swedenborg spells it jakt.

The fact of friends meeting Swedenborg would seem to indicate that he was expected and that his journey had been long arranged. However, it is not improbable that the yacht did not come specially to meet Swedenborg but on business with the ship. Jonas Alstrom, the future great manufacturer, was a shipbroker in London, and very probably it was his yacht on which Swedenborg got to land.

One can imagine the feelings of the young Swede, whose experience of city life had been confined to Upsala, on arriving at a city of three-quarters of a million inhabitants, whose territory covered 7-1/2 x 2-1/2 miles - over eighteen square miles. A cousin of Swedenborg who had a similar background of experience thus expresses himself on his first visit to London some months after Swedenborg's arrival:


"On this famous city, the largest and most populous in the

whole Christian world, no remarks are needed here, it being a

subject too extensive to write about, and which cannot be

sufficiently described either by books or by travelers'

accounts. But I will say that one who wishes to see all the

races, riches, magnificence and glory of all the world in

miniature, can see it in London at the Royal Exchange and

Custom House, not to speak of innumerable occasions and

places where a stranger can never satisfy his curiosity."

(Chamberlayne, Mag. Brit. not. 1710 p. 220; Hatton, p.

111s, 118; Hesselius Dagbok Dec. 8, 1711)

Another admiring statement is made by a German physician who visited London in 1707 after visiting in Hamburg and Amsterdam:

"A stranger cannot without wonder gaze upon this prodigious

city which is certainly the largest in Christendom. In its

length, together with the suburbs, which is hard to

distinguish from the city, it is seven English miles. . . In

the great streets and public places of resort, there are at

all times such a concourse of people that nobody can avoid

the crowd that walks afoot, to say nothing of the eminent

danger from the perpetual hurry of their publick coaches."

(A Relation of a Journey into England and Holland, p. 26)

Here in London, Swedenborg saw for the first time the use of coal, of clogs, and probably of tobacco used as snuff. As to the use of clogs, we have the impressions of Swedenborg's cousin Hesselius when he saw them for the first time in Harwich in December 1711: "Here as elsewhere in the towns, the people go on the streets with 'iron clogs,' that is, iron shoes on their




feet, which clatter on the streets like our horses' shoes" (Dagbok).

His attention was perforce called to the Sacheverell disturbance. The previous Fall, Sacheverell had preached two violent sermons against the Presbyterians or Whigs who were then in power. On March 23, 1710, Parliament sentenced him to three years' expulsion from office, and his sermons were to be burned by the public hangman. Excitement ran so high that a mob broke into Presbyterian churches and carried off and burned furniture. Much of this was before Swedenborg arrived in London. And now the period of pamphleteering was going on.

What must have amazed Swedenborg most, and have awakened enthusiasm in his bosom was the contrast between the freedom of speech in England - as shown in this matter. His friend, Eric Alstyn, refers to this freedom in a letter to his uncle, Professor Upmarck, dated London, September 1710:

                                                                                                  "Sacheverell has caused inward unrest here. The country is

divided into two parties, High Church and Low Church. So many

publications are issued by both parties about the royal power

over the subject, and the subject's duty to the king, that I

think this would be possible nowhere else than here. In other

places one has not such great freedom to write and talk what

he will. The Queen has full authority to consent to

Sacheverell's condemnation, but it is thought that she will

dissolve Parliament and have a new election because of

complaint against against parliament in this matter." (Berg,

Saml. III:658)

He went sightseeing of course. Indeed, on October 13th he writes to his brother-in-law that he had "seen all that was worth seeing", mentions particularly the "magnificent temple of St. Paul" which "was finished in all its parts a few days ago" - referring probably to the final act when the son of Sir Christopher Wren laid with his own hands the last stone, thirty years after the first stone had been laid.*       (OQ. 207; Chamberlayne p. 276; London Past and P. 46)

* The exact day of this ceremony was not recorded (Bumpus, p. 97)

The whispering gallery particularly attracted Swedenborg's attention as illustrating the laws of sound and the motions in the air; and he refers to it later in 1716, in the first number of the Daedalus Hyperboreus, in an article entitled "Experiments on Sound which can be carried on in our land": "If a man in a vaulted room talks near the wall, a second man can hear his words at the other side; as is observed in St. Paul's Church in London up in the round gallery."       (DH. I p. 11)

At Westminster Hall, while examining the Royal Monuments, he suddenly, in the Poet's Corner, came across a wall tablet engraved in gilt letters with the name of Isaac Casaubon: "I was carried away with such great love of this literary hero that I gave my kisses to his tomb; and to his remains, lying under the marble, I dedicated the following verses: (OP p. 22)

Why beautify the tomb with marble, verse, and gold

       When yet these perish, while thyself survives.

But still methinks the marble and the gold themselves acclaim thee;

       And take with joy the kisses of the passerby.



"Or in this way:

This urn contains thy ashes, God and the stars thy soul,

       Writings contain thy genius, the world thy name;

Death has dissolved thee into these remains,

       But for thyself, thou liv'st unharmed within our hearts." (LA p.14)

Swedenborg seemed at this time to have been fond of exercising himself in Latin verse, for he did a good deal of this while on this his first foreign journey; and one of the qualifications pointed out in his favor by Bishop Swedberg in a letter to the Government soliciting a position for him, was "an adept at poetry." Eric Benzelius had written him that Urban Hjarne intended to publish a complete collection of the poems of Sophia Elizabeth Brenner (1659-1730), and suggested that Swedenborg contribute a verse in celebration of the publication and the poetess.       (ACSD 82)

Brenner's work is mainly fugitive verses (sometimes in German, French, Latin or Italian), written on festive occasions. By her contemporaries she was regarded as the sappho of her age, but a later age has not agreed. A learned woman was a rarity in Sweden, and Fru Brenner was both learned and domestic (15 children), but her estimate of herself was very modest. Confer CL 175.       (BL pp. 65, 66)

Swedenborg wrote for his book the following lines which are perhaps the most stilted and certainly the poorest of all his verse; it is hardly to be wondered at that he asks his brother-in-law "if you find anything in them which should be corrected, you will take it on you to amend it, and communicate the amendations to her"       (To E. Benzelius, Oct. 1710).       See CL 175.

                                                                                            To Sophia Elizabeth Brenner, the sole poetess of our age, when she would sing her songs anew. (OP. p. 23)

The Muses of old revered by Rome or Greece

       Came each from a prophet's brain

The Pierian muse revered in Swea's land

       Was born of a brain her own.

The Muses owe name and life to poet-bards

       But she to herself and her songs

And 'tis to Sophia, Brenner owes his fame, owes song to Sophia, the muse.

       Thus she is Phoenix to the Muse, and to herself and to her man.

When her fingers touch the lyre

       Such songs are joined to strings that I do swear

       That Camena so sweet has never yet been.

As light excels the darkness, or the frame the shade:

       So thou, Elizabeth, the muses of Apollo.

With laurel wreath and ivy, the Swedes shall crown but thee;

       To them, the first of learned Dames - perhaps the last.

Had Naso and the Homerian bard told but of thee

       Thou wouldst have been alone, instead of all the Muses,

And the Age to come, methinks, will so revere thee,

       That it will worship thee as muse and semi-deity.




The noble part of thee will flee the last shades, the fire, the ash,

       And ne'er will know it death.

And so, with pardon, I do prophesy for thee such death

       That future men will deem thee as the Goddess Sophia.

Then not to brazen plate nor cypress shade commit thyself

       Nor yet to marble or to wood thy name:

That name will reach an age more distant,

       And when the marble's gone, the Goddess still remains.

                                   (LM. p.15))

This poem was duly printed in Hjarne's edition, Stockholm 1713, which included a preface by Fru Brenner and thirty-six pages of poetic congratulations.

Swedenborg did not lose sight of his main purpose, which was to make his journey a means for cultivating and widening his mind, especially on the subject of Mathesis.

He visits the shops of booksellers and instrument makers, and thus gathers a "small stock of books on Mathesis" together with various instruments such as a tube, quadrants, prisms, microscopes, artificial scales, and a camera obscura. Indeed, he hopes to have money enough to buy an air pump,        (OQ. I:207)

Among the books were Vitalis, Lexicon Mathesis, bought in August. Probably also Newton's Principia.

He occupies himself in learning English and, meanwhile, "reads Newton daily" in Latin.* Indeed, Newton must have made a profound impression on the young student's mind, and it would seem this redounded also to Sweden's learned world. Newton's Principia was published in 1685, but the first known mention of his law of gravitation in Upsala is a Disputation under Elfvius in 1703, and the next mention is in 1716 also under Elfvius. The latter was somewhat skeptical about Newton's discovery, which he termed "a pure abstraction." Indeed, "it was first through Swedenborg's visit to England, his correspondence and work, that the new views came to be adopted" in Sweden. (UUH 2:2:323-24)

* The Optica had been published in Latin in 1706, and the Quadratures in 1704.

Another writer says: "It seems to have been first through Polhem* and then through Swedenborg that Newton's discovery came into general knowledge."                                                                      
(Bring, Polhem, p. 62)

* Polhem first read Newton in 1712, and found it very obscure (Bring, Polhem P. 62).

Until Swedenborg knew English better, he will not consult the men of skill in Mathesis, but he hopes to meet the great Newton.* (Read LM pp. 18-23)

* Newton was then the Master of the Royal Mint, and was living next door to the Orange Street Chapel in St. Martin's Street, Leicester Square. In 1710, he was sixty-eight years old (D. of NB p. 390).



Here, then, we see the beginning of that long period of which Swedenborg speaks when he says in a letter to Oetinger, in November 1766: "I was introduced by the Lord first into the natural sciences, and thus prepared; and, indeed, from the year 1710 to 1744 when heaven was opened to me"       (Doc. 2: 257)

Thus it was in England, not in Sweden, that Swedenborg commenced his scientific preparation; in the sphere of the freedom fostered by the Royal Society, and not the theological-bound University of Upsala; under the influence of Newton, and not of Descartes.

As for Swedenborg's associates at this time, the nucleus of them were the members of the Swedish Church in London. Here Swedenborg, for the first time, made the acquaintance of Jonas Alstrom, who subsequently became so valuable for the commercial development of Sweden. He was but three years Swedenborg's senior, and had only just started as a shipbroker. Arriving in England in 1707, Alstrom had made rapid progress, and in 1710, when he started business for himself, he was able to send for his two sisters, the older Brita to be his housekeeper, and the younger Maria as his bookkeeper cashier. This year also he became a naturalized Englishman. He seems to have become intimate enough with Swedenborg to appreciate his ability and industry. Another member of the Church Council with whom he came into contact was Jonas Alberg, a London merchant to whom Swedenborg sent his letters to be forwarded to Sweden.       (Carlson p.161; OQ 1:218; see Doc. 1:342)

Swedenborg's position as the son of a Bishop would also bring him into the company of Count Carl Gyllenborg, the Swedish Resident at the English Court since April. Swedenborg's taste for learning would also draw him to Gyllenborg who, in 1712, was elected a member of the Royal Society. Swedenborg, moreover, speaks of visiting Gyllenborg.       (OQ. 1:211)

A more intimate friend would be Eric Alstrin,the future bishop, who for two years had been residing at the home of the oriental scholar, Joh. Esdras Edzardus, as tutor to his sons. Doctor Edzardus was the son of the Hamburg Edzardus with whom Jesper Swedberg had spoken about angelic speech, and who had been pastor of the German Church in London for twenty-eight years.

Eric Alstrin was nephew and adopted son to Professor Upmarck with whom he had lived during his studies in Upsala from 1697-1706. He was five years Swedenborg's senior.        (BL. p. 143)

Dr. Edzardus lived at Fulham, a beautiful village about five miles from London (2s. by river), and had a fine garden. A few doors away lived the exile Beverland, and likewise in Fulham was the official residence of Dr. Compton, Bishop of London, who held open house on certain days, and who invited Alstrin and his friends to come and eat with him sometimes - confer Hesselius' Dagbok, February 4, 5. (Hatton. p. 796; Berg, Saml. III:658)

It is probable also that Swedenborg carried letters of introduction to the bishops who resided in London. For, owing to his administration of the Swedish Church in Delaware, Bishop Swedberg was in high favor among the dignitaries of the Anglican Church. Since the beginning of his charge in America, he had counseled friendly and even cordial cooperation with the



English churches; and the fruit of this counsel was seen many years later when the Swedish Church in Wilmington merged into the Holy Trinity Church. Moreover, Eric Benzelius had entered into personal relations of friendship with Archbishop Tennison in Canterbury, besides Bishop Barnet and other bishops. (Dalin, p. 12; Brefwax. p. xvii)

One bishop with whom he certainly had come into friendly relations was the Bishop of Ely, Doctor John Moore, whose palace was conveniently situated in Holborn (Ely House), and who was one of the more wealthy of the Anglican bishops. (Chamberlayne, 3, 475)

Dr. Moore (1646-1714), first the Bishop of Norwich and then of Ely, was of a democratic nature and a low churchman. When he entered into occupation of Ely House [Holborn, between Farringdon Street and Hatton Garden], he immediately began rebuilding and repairing. His library "was famous throughout Europe," consisting of about 29,000 books and nearly 1,800 MSS, and "he was never happier than when he could show a visitor to London the treasures of his library." His books and treasures were at the free disposal of scholars, both English and foreign. After his death, in 1715, his library was bought by the King for six thousand pounds sterling. (D. of NB. pp. 807-8; NZ 1715: 501)

It is probable also that he came into contact with John Robinson, the Bishop of Bristol. Robinson (1650-1723), who lived at Somerset House and to whom Bishop Swedberg had written a letter in December 1710 (perhaps delivered by Emanuel Swedenborg) had been representative of his country, first as Chaplain and later as Minister Resident at the Swedish Court from 1680 to 1709 though five of these years, 1702-7, he was in Poland and Saxony). He spoke Swedish fluently, indeed, he was Swedish in his appearance, he was also a friend of Bishop Swedberg who wrote him a letter about the Skane girl who went without food. (New Mag. of Knowl. 1791: 368; D. of NB pp. 24-5; Mem. of L. 1: 256)

In 1694, an interesting "Account of Sweden" was published in London without the consent of the author, who was John Robinson. John Robinson was a great favorite of Charles XII. (D. of NB.)

Then, of course, Swedenborg came into contact with other members of the Swedish Church in London, sometimes mentioned in his letters; as, for instance, Alber (OQ 1:218), Brander (ib. 223), Nordberg, who had been ordained by his father in Skara in 1710 and at once sent to London as Adjunct Pastor and Schoolmaster, and perhaps also John Spieker, Swedenborg's future banker who arrived to settle in England in 1712. (Carlson, 145, 167, 174)

At the time of Swedenborg's arrival in May 1710, a movement was commencing among the London Swedes, of which Swedenborg as the son of his father must frequently have heard, and indeed as a highly interested hearer.

In 1673, the Swedes in London had received the privilege of building a Lutheran Church, but owing to their small number, they turned this over to the Germans with whom those of them who understood German worshiped. (Palmin. Nig. Minnesbl. 61)

In 1673, the Swedes in London had built a church in Trinity Lane near St. Paul's, which was called both the Swedish and the German Church; German being the native tongue of many Swedes. In 1696, when the Danish



Government built a Danish-Norwegian Church in Welclose Square, most of the Swedes worshiped there. But after the battle of Pultava, these Swedes, not caring to hear prayers for their enemies, went back to the German Church which was then under the pastorate of Doctor Ezardus.       (Sv. i Eng. pp. 111-12)

On March 1st, the day after Stenbock's victory, 1710, the Swedish residents in London agreed to contribute to the building of a Swedish Church, hoping for support from the Swedish King. Jonas Alstrom was probably the driving force in this. Swedenborg's contribution of fifteen shillings, on May 10th, was for this building fund; the records show that he gave another fifteen shillings in July, and five shillings in 1713 - perhaps sent from France. (Sv. i. Eng. p. 113; Carlson, p.174; NCMag. 1908:548)

The church was not built until 1728, but a meeting house was rented on Ratcliffe Highway near Princes Square, and on March 19, 1710, from two candidates nominated by Dr. Ezardus, namely, Alstrin and Hegardt - both living with Dr. Ezardus - Hegardt was elected pastor, soon afterwards ordained by Dr.
Ezardus. (Sv. i. Eng. p.120; Carlson, p. 7-8; Palmen. 62)

Probably Swedenborg met this Regardt, who was three years his senior, some years afterwards when Charles XII was for two years a guest at his house in Lund. (SBL p. 90; Carlson pp. 143-44)

On May 16th, the pastor and council asked Bishop Swedberg to take charge of them, and in July, Bishop Swedberg accepted. (Carlson pp. 9, 182-3)

His first London letter to Benzelius speaks of the affection he feels for his second father: If you were to inquire about myself, dearest Brother, I know myself to be alive but not happy; for I long for you and home. If I chance to see a letter from you, you carry me back, as it were, to my fatherland, for I love and revere you not only more than my brothers but even as a parent" (To E.Benzelius, October 1710).

Meanwhile, in Upsala the plague had so spread that on November 8, 1710, the University decided to stop all lectures; the professors being thus unoccupied, Benzelius invited a number of them to meet with him in the Library or in his home once or twice a week for the discussion of scientific subjects.

According to his own words, he was led to this step from his desire to promote that study of mathematics in which he had encouraged Swedenborg. (DH 1910, p. 6; Prosperin, 9; Brefwaxling xxii)

The choice of members of this Collegium Curiosorum is significant of Eric Benzelius's attitude to learning. They were Professor Harald Wallerius (Math.) and his sons John (Adjunt) and Joran. Professors Elfvius (Astronomy), Roberg, and Rudbeck Jr. (Medicine), and Upmarck (Eloquence and Poetry) the only representative of the humanities - all from the medical and philosophical faculties.        (UUH II:417-18; DH 21)

The objects of the Collegium were purely in the natural sciences. "Questions concerning the investigation of the principles of natural things (says a contemporary) by a new and now frequently received method, namely, by means of mechanical rules, by numbers. and the comparison of forces. Here various hypotheses and axioms of the philosophers which the world adores as oracles are called under examination, even as are the



elements; here is discussed the equilibrium of the weighing of the earth and planets floating in the ether; concerning their situation in respect to each other and their varied motions; the remarkable and as yet not well observed force of heat and cold; the forces of the air which surround all things; the compression of the air and its elastic force, the equilibrium of air and water with respect to the gravity of each, and their mutual operations as these are to be measured in the upper regions or in the depths of the earth; the weight of different metals compared with fluid and fine bodies in respect to its relation to their solidity and exact weight, as computed by their cube and square roots, etc." (Glas, Esssai)

The pest was allayed by the Spring of 1731, and without a single loss among the professors. (Berg, III:665)

Eric Benzelius himself says: "In order always to have materiam discursuum, correspondence was entered into with Director Polhammar who, from his inexhaustible store in mathematics and physics answered questions and propounded problems, and also gave copies of his many mathematical charts. Specimens of these conferences and correspondence may be found in my brother-in-law Assessor Swedenborg's Daedalus Hyperboreus which came out some years later." Pictures of members to be found in Daedalus Hyperboreus reprint (SBL p. 82; Brefwaxling xxii-iii)

When the pest stopped in 1711, the meetings continued and ultimately became the present Vetenskape Societeten i Upsala.

Doubtless Eric Benzelius wrote to Swedenborg about this Society; at any rate, he wrote him asking him to inquire about and purchase books and instruments - commissions which Swedenborg duly fulfills, adding also recommendations of his own, not only of books but of astronomical and other instruments which he examines at Marshalls; and he recommends an air pump. Among other books, he recommends the Philosophical Transactions which was too dear for him. (OQ. 1:214, 218)

Prof. Vallerius also writes, making a similar request - a great mark of confidence in a young student.

But Benzelius did not send money, and Swedenborg has to pay out money at any rate for the books, and therefore in April he writes to his brother asking him "to appoint a merchant from whom Marshall may receive payment (for his microscopes), since I must set my appetite according to my store, and it is not allowed me to buy on credit, neither will our Swedish merchants give it to me unless they have leave to draw exchange therefor to Sweden, which generally amounts to 33-34 a pound instead of 26-27 from Sweden."

But with all his studies, he managed to find time to read some of the books he is buying for the Library, and on these he sometimes comments.

He now reads English with ease, his reading including "Reflections upon the Conduct of Human Life with reference to the study of Learning and Knowledge," by John Norris, the English representative of Malebranche.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 45                                                                                                          

On this work, which he read "right through," Swedenborg makes the very just comment that the author uses so many bypaths that he continually holds the reader in suspense as to what he wishes to say. Another English book he read was "Reflections upon Learning, wherein is shown the insufficiency thereof in its several particulars, in order to evince the usefulness and necessity of Revelation," by Thomas Baker, the Scholar and Antiquarian. Swedenborg read this work "with the greatest delight"; indeed, he read it three times, which is somewhat surprising in view of his comment that "the author approves of nothing, but makes all that has been found out and written, incomplete and undeserving of his esteem; which . . . might redound to his own injury," since he himself is among those he refutes. But the author is also an enemy to the conceit of the learned. After giving a little poke at Descartes' ideas, he says: "However we may be puffed up with vain conceits . . . and fancy there is little hid from the profound search and accurate inquiries of so learned an age, to me it seem we are yet much in the dark . . . that the state of learning is so far from perfection . . . that it ought to teach us modesty and keep us humble"       (pp. 6-7). (OQ. 1:209)

Swedenborg, we imagine, would find pleasure in this thought - a thought which is so often repeated in his own works. Baker speaks in a similar vein as to doubts - referring, of course, to Descartes' famous sentence dubito ergo sum: "The old way of proceeding upon allowed principles seems to me more rational than this method of questioning everything till we have unsettled the first grounds and foundations of truth; and, however useful doubting may be in philosophical inquiries, it ought always to suppose a ground, for a groundless doubt is so far irrational" (p. 127). Descartes, he continues, after he "done with doubting and has proved to us our own existence, brings us at last to the Being of a God." Baker is unwilling to weaken any proof in this respect, but he does note that Descarte's "Proof from the idea is the abstrusest and the least conclusive argument that has been brought forward; it is neither clear nor the most conclusive" (pp. 127-28).

He is equally severe against Malebranche and his most recent defender John Norris, whose doctrine of ideas, he says, is "so like the inward light of a new sect of men as not to make it over reputable" (p. 130). They agree also with the Quakers, in that they "have too low a value for human learning" either as it lies in books or in nature, as compared with "that light which displays itself from the ideal world. Experience and deduction have been formerly esteemed useful, but in this compendious way to knowledge . . . there needs little more than application and attention" (p. 131).

The professed subject of Norris's book is to show that no profit lies in the cultivation of the intellect by learning, but that the sole object of our desire should be to learn to be good. The object of Baker's book is to show the necessity of revelation by showing how very little the learned world knows despite its boastings.

Other books that attracted Swedenborg's particular attention were Bishop Wilkins' works, which he found "very ingenious" and which undoubtedly suggested some of his mechanical inventions - to which we shall refer later - and Derham's Miscellanea Curiosa which contains the latest fruits of the work of the Royal Society. (OQ. 1:214)




Swedenborg now more fully devotes his attention to the Study of Astronomy and its accompanying mathematics. "I am now working through Algebra and subtil Geometry," he writes, "intending here to make an advance which, in time, will enable me to continue Polhem's inventions. "The particular inventions he now has in mind are concerned with the improvement of scientific and especially astronomical instruments. (OQ. 1:215)

Of Astronomy he writes that he has so far mastered it that "I have discovered a great many things which I think will be useful to that study, though in the beginning I had much brainwracking. Yet long speculations do not come hard to me now."

                                                                                           Here we note the initiament to habits of deep thought.

What more particularly draws his attention is the solution of that problem of finding the longitude at sea which would prove of such benefit to all nations and particularly seafaring peoples, for which both Holland and England had offered liberal rewards.

"I have weighed the plans of all in regard to the finding of the terrestrial longitude," writes Swedenborg in October 1711, "but found they would not serve. I have, therefore, thought up a method which is infallible, by means of the moon; of which I am sure that it is the best that can be given, intending in a short time to inform the Royal Society that I have a plan. . . If I find the gentlemen are favorable, I will publish it here or else in France." He adds that he has "hit upon" a "lot of" new methods in connection with astronomical observations, and these also he intends to publish.

Swedenborg did not apparently wait upon the Royal Society at that time; nor does he seem to have written his method of finding the longitude for publication until some years later; but it is interesting to note that in 1769 he did wait on the Royal Society, and with the very publication which he had in mind fifty-eight years earlier.

Meanwhile, Swedenborg is increasing his circle of acquaintances.

"I visit daily the best mathematicians here," he writes in April 1711; yet his statement needs some limitation for in the same letter he desires to have Polhammar's inventions communicated to him as soon as they come out, since they will "insinuera" him to some mathematicians whose acquaintance he desires to make. (OQ. 1: 210)

His studies in astronomy lead him to make the acquaintance of John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal of England, visiting him at Greenwich, a village some nine miles from London.

John Flamsteed was by this time a man of sixty-five years old, and his choleric disposition had become embittered by his disputes with Newton and Halley. He had been appointed "Astronomical Observator" in 1676, his immediate work being to make exact observations with a view of making possible the finding of the longitude by sea. Greenwich Observatory was built for him. His salary was very small, and he was obliged to take



private pupils, and perhaps it was in some such position that Swedenborg met him so frequently - probably went by river, fare 1s 6d. (D of NB. 9. 241. 243; Some Part. relat. to Long. 7; NV of Lond. 796)

Here Swedenborg received that interest in finding the longitude which remained with him till almost the end of his life. For his own pleasure, he calculates all the solar and lunar eclipses from 1712-21. These he offered to his university which accepted them; and, meanwhile, he contemplates still further calculations, for which he asks his brother-in-law to order a quadrant for him of Polhem's son Gabriel for which he thought his father would not refuse to pay. (OQ. 1:211; DH. p. 67)

Meanwhile, the Collegium Curiosorum which up to now had occupied itself mainly with the discussion of Polhem's ideas, at its meeting of July tenth 1711, "Resolved that 'Emanuel Swedberg go to Flamsteed and thoroughly examine the instruments how they are made, the divisions, in what way the minutes are taken, whether he uses a telescope instead of diopters, as on other instruments and how they are moved with the apparatus; also how he makes use of the instruments in the dark, if it is done in the light," etc. (DH 1910, pp. 66-67)

These inquiries Prof. Elfvius promised to make. The Minutes also note:

"That Emanuel Swedberg observes the way and manner in which the instruments are distinguished, and how they are examined; further, what they cost according to size.

"What the latest globes cost, and in what esteem are they held by the learned; item, whether one could get the paper for them sent to be put together here."

According to what tables had he reckoned his eclipses, and to send his calculations on.

He is encouraged in his effort to facilitate the calculation of eclipses.

That the Philosophical Transactions be bought for the library.

                                                                                            "Young Polhammar is not capable of correctly marking a quadrant; the one he made for the late Spole was not accurate. Instead of this, he should become advised what such a quadrant costs in London; item, whether they are made in Hook's manner with a screw in the board,"

Eric Benzelius promised to make these communications.

Elfvius wrote to Swedenborg a few days later as to observing Flamsteed's instruments and methods. He, at the same time, asked him, "What the learned mathematicians think of Newton's Principia of the Motions of the Planets, since they seem to be pure abstractions and not physical, and what tables of the lunar and solar eclipses are held to be the best." (OQ. 1: 211-13)

The Professor also complies with Swedenborg's request, and copies out his observations of the solar eclipse of 1706 together with other observations made at the same time at Bologne.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 48                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 [1711                                                                                                  London

He also takes the occasion to recommend to his erstwhile student to add glass grinding, "even in its least details," to his other manual trades; this he writes in connection with Swedenborg's statement, that he lodged with journeymen, and changed his lodgings often in order to steal their trade. Thus, he had lodged at a watchmaker and cabinetmaker, and from the Spring to the Fall of 1711, he is lodging at a mathematical instrument maker and has made such progress that he writes in October; "I have made a large number of brass instruments for my own needs; were I in Sweden," he adds, "I would not apply to any one to make the meridians for the globes."       (OQ. 1: 210)

From the cabinetmaker, he had learned to mount his instruments, and from the watchmaker, to engrave. The latter accomplishment he is quite proud of: "I have already so far acquired the art," he writes, "that I think myself competent in it," and he dutifully sends a first specimen of his work to his father, as well as a more ambitious "pricking" for Prof. Elfvius.* His object in learning these trades is very practical: he hopes actually to practice and introduce them into his own country. No engraver could be found in Sweden, and the quadrants then in use were all of iron or wood with only the periphery in brass.

* Many years later (April 1744), this art of engraving is brought again to his mind when in a dream, "there were those who admired my copper-plates which were well done, and wished to see my drafts (JD p. 194).

It is a high honor that the capable Prof. Elfvius should write to one who but two years previously had been an undergraduate in his classes; but Swedenborg had evidently stood high as a student, for Elfvius concludes his letter by alluding to "Swedenborg's fine curiostet to find out things both with the learned and with other workers in London. An apparently insatiable desire to learn facts, experience, as distinguished from abstract principles or classical niceties, seems to have been characteristic of Swedenborg as a young man. "That my Brother encourages me in Mathesis," he writes to Benzelius, "is a matter I should rather be discouraged in, since I have an immoderate desire thereto with- out this, and especially to astronomy and mechanics." Then he adds: "Here are also grand English poets who are worth reading through if only for their inventions, such as Dryden, Spencer, Waller, Milton, Cowley, Beaumont and Fletcher, Shakespeare, Johnson Ben, Oldham, Benham, Phillip and Smith" referring perhaps to the folio volume of poetry published about that time. (OQ. 1:210, 213; LM. p. 28)

Swedenborg's answers to the Upsala inquiries are contained in his letter to his brother-in-law, written in the latter part of August, 1711, after he had been nearly sixteen months in England. He will attend to all commission, or has already done so. He is also sending a microscope and "a list of all accessories belonging to the air" in the inventor's own handwriting. As to the globes, "to get the paper for them is almost impossible for they are afraid they would be copied." But since the finished globes are so expensive, he sends an engraving which he has himself made. (LM. p. 28)



                                                                                             He had visited Flamsteed early in August, and had taken him Prof. Elfvius' Lunar Tables, "which he at once in Swedenborg's presence compared with his own observations." In his latter to Benzelius, Swedenborg describes Flamsteed's work in some detail, and what he has published - including his editing of the Posthumous Works of Horrocks, the English Astronomer (d. 1641), and he refers to his observations in folio (published by Newton and Halley), though without any reference to Flamsteed's objections to this work; but he adds: "Flamsteed told me that he had under press Constellationes Caelestes as they are found in Hipparchus" - evidently referring to the first volume of Flamsteed's own work which came out in three volumes after his death. (Doc. 1: 574)

"Prof. Elfvius," he further observes, "asks the judgment of

Englishmen concerning Newton's Principia; but in this

matter may no Englishman be consulted for he is blind when it

concerns his own; and it were a crime to bring these

Principia into doubt."               (LM. p. 33)

When in this letter Swedenborg promises to send a list of accessories to the air pump, he adds: "Of this list I have the Author's original. It was written out by him and set up in a quarto tract." (LM. p. 28)

The author referred to, is the famous Francis Hauksbee, experimentalist in natural science and fellow of the Royal Society. The fact that Swedenborg received from him an autograph of the description of his famous air pump, indicates an intimate acquaintanceship between the two men. Certain it is that Swedenborg would be greatly attracted by this advanced experimenter and sound thinker. In 1709 he published his Physica-mechanical Experiments, which Swedenborg bought for the Upsala Library, and which he himself undoubtedly read. The Preface to this work opens with words which must have met Swedenborg's approval:

"The learned world" says Hauksbee, "is now almost generally

convinced that instead of amusing themselves with vain

hypotheses which seem to differ little from romances, there

is no other way of improving natural philosophy but by

demonstration and conclusions founded upon experiments

judiciously and accurately made."

In this work, Hauksbee brings out many hitherto unknown things, particularly in respect to electricity. He showed that light was due to friction of amber, glass, etc., and this he attributed to a new force which he called electricity, comparing the resultant light to the crackling and flashing of lightning.        (D of NB. p.171)

Swedenborg must have followed these experiments that opened an entirely new field to investigation with intense interest, and who shall say what gems of ideas then entered into his mind on the contemplation of the harnessing of this interior force called electricity?

In Hauksbee's book, which though small (22 pages quarto) was

so rich in facts, Swedenborg also read many experiments as to

water creeping up narrow tubes, between smooth plates, etc.

a matter to which he very often refers in his works. (see

Fib. 335, Cer.)

Swedenborg's admiration of Hauksbee is indicated in the fact that he writes to his brother-in-law, the Librarian, in respect to the "autograph" list, that "it may either be put by for my use, or bespoke for the Library." (OQ. 1: 214)



Benzelius had evidently asked Swedenborg to inquire as to the status of his Vitis Aquilonea (Northern Vine, containing the lives of the Swedish saints from 813 to 1525. by John Vastovius) which Benzelius had edited and published in 1708, and a number of copies of which he had sent to London in 1709 for distribution among his friends. The books were held up in the Custom House, and Swedenborg, apparently filled with deep respect for English law, hesitates to inquire for these Catholic books. "There is great hazard in me inquiring after them," he writes, "since the work is both Catholic and superstitious, and the importation of such books is severely penalized," (ACSD 55B; OQ. 1:211)

Benzelius evidently did not like this characterization of his

author, which he very justly regarded as an historical rather

than religious work; and so he protests, and asks that Bishop

More, his literary friend, see to the releasing of the books

from the Customs.

In his letter of October 1711, Swedenborg promises to inquire of the Bishop who, at the time, was on visitation, but he also returns to the attack on the "Catholic and superstitious book": "My Brother must not take it amiss" he writes, "that Vastovius is called superstitious, which can no more detract from the esteem one ought to have for the use he has performed in ecclesiastical history than if Virgil should be called a heathen"; and then he makes a Latin Syllogism which he thinks "cannot be controverted," to wit. "All Catholics are worshippers of the saints and the pope; all worshippers of the saints are superstitious"; and then he goes on: "Religion never deprives a writer of his fame in history. Were my Brother's little dalklipping carelessly to be called a little rusty bit of copper, the intrinsic value which it has in itself is not thereby decreased." (LM. p. 31)

These copies of Vastovius had been sent by Benzelius for distribution among his friends and acquaintances as early as 1709, and Swedenborg was probably to have distributed them if he could get them out of customs; at any rate, he was to have taken one to Doctor Hudson of Oxford. The delivery was not made, however, and as late as September 22nd, they had not yet got out of customs. (ACSD 55B)

This was some disappointment to Swedenborg as he thereby missed the opportunity of meeting some of the learned by means of these books. (OQ 1:218)

But Swedenborg is now feeling the want of money. He had been supplied by his father with 200 Riksdaler (L50), but this is all gone, and now he is left in London though wanting to go to Oxford where, naturally, he expected to find great stimulus to his thought.

He had visited the small library in Zion's College In London Wall.*

* Now pulled down. Its position is shown as follows:




"I long to see the Bodleyian Library since we have been

through the small one that is in Sion's College. I am left

here in want of money, I am surprised that my father has not

taken more thought of me instead of letting me live on 200

Riksdalers* for what will soon be sixteen months, when he

knows that I promised him by letter not to burden him by any

drawing of a bill on home. The iron does not arrive here for

three or four months hence. It is hard to live like the wench

in Skane without food or drink." (LM. p. 33)

       * 200 Riksdaler = about L50.

The annual salary of the Swedish Pastor was L40 plus three

collections; of the Astronomer Royal, L100. (Carlson p.182)

The reference to the iron probably refers to the export of

iron from Swedenborg's stepmother's furnace at Husby, and on

which he could draw. See Documents 1; 376.

       The reference to the Skane wench is to a servant girl, Esther

Johanna, living near Malmo, who was reported to have gone

without food for six years, and without drink for eight.

Bishop Swedberg himself visited the girl, and Swedenborg

refers to this in his Animal Kingdom (Vol- 2 n. 509 n. XX).

       (Mottraye, pp. 172-74)

In 1710, Bishop Swedberg published a book on this girl

about whom he wrote to Bishop Robinson (p. 41) - which in

June 1711, was published in London in English translation (22

pages 8vo), perhaps by the Bishop of Bristol, and of course

had been read by Emanuel Swedenborg. (M. of L. p. 256;

LM. p.17)

For an account of this girl and of Bishop Swedberg's letter

to the Bishop of Bristol, see Memoirs of Literature, 1711

p. 256; also New Magazine of Knowledge 1791 p. 368

Meanwhile, on June 15th, 1711, Swedenborg's father was made a member of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospels in Foreign parts. He was proposed by the former Ambassador, John Robinson, now the Lord Bishop of Bristol, and was the second Swede to be a member of this Society, the first being Bishop Bilberg of Strangnas. (ACSD 52:1)

                                                                                             According to his son Jesper, Bishop Swedberg was undoubtedly

elected "because of the expenditure and care he is giving for

the Swedish children in America." (Cf. Then Sidste Basun

ofwer Tyskland.)

This Society was established by Royal Letters patent in 1701,

and its President is ex officio the Archbishop of Canterbury.

It was to this Society that any money accruing for the sale

of the Arcana Coelestia was to be given. The Society is

still in active existence but no trace could be found in its

books of money received from Swedenborg or his publisher.

In December 1711, while still awaiting an opportunity to go       Oxford, Swedenborg was pleasantly surprised by a visit from

his cousin, Pastor Andreas Hasselius, who had been sent out

by Bishop Swedberg to serve as


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 52                                                                                             [1712                                                                                    

Pastor of the Swedish Church in Wilmington. Andreas was accompanied by his brother Gustaf, the painter. They arrived on December 8th, 1711, and undoubtedly Swedenborg went round with them. (Hassel. Dagbok; LM. p. 34)

On January 14th, 1712, he walked on Fleet Street, and was struck with the movements and crowds. He notes also seeing a glassblower who in half-an-hour span one thousand yards of glass fine as hair. (Dagbok) On the next day he was probably with Emanuel Swedenborg, and they both note the remarkable clock which they saw at the Royal Watchmaker Antram's: "A rare and clever piece of work which went only when the light was lit and set on the work, and as soon as the light was put out, it stopped." Hesselius regards the clock as merely a curiosity, but Swedenborg, who probably saw it at the same time, shows himself more scientifically curious. To quote his own quaint English, in a letter to his brother-in-law, dated October 16, 1712: "It was a clock which was still and without motion. On the top of it was a candle, on which, when he put fire, the clock presently did go and kept its true time. . . On the top and near the candle was nothing that could be heated by the flame or fire and set the clock in motion. He did show me the inward parts which were wholly different from other clocks. He told me that nobody yet has found the causes, how it comes by the candle so often has in wil in motion."       (LM. p. 43)

Perhaps Hesselius brought the long waited-for remittances from the Bishop. At any rate, on the morning of Wednesday, January 16, a month after Hesselius's arrival in London, Swedenborg takes the coach to Oxford - a ride of fifty-five miles. (New Descript. of Pres. Roads p. 44; Dagbok)

Of Swedenborg's life in Oxford hardly anything is known. On February first, his application to use the Bodleian Library, "for the purpose of making greater advance in his studies," was granted, and on the same day he signed his name on the list of foreigners using the Library. (ACSD 54:1)

Doctor John Hudson (1662-1719), the Greek Scholar and Bodleian Librarian, was a friend of Swedenborg's brother--in-law, and undoubtedly was of service to Swedenborg. At any rate, he sent a message and greeting by him to Benzelius. It is not unlikely that here also Swedenborg came into contact with Thomas Hearne (1678-1735), the Antiquarian, who was then Hudson's Assistant Librarian.

Certainly he met the Savillian Professor of Mathematics, Edmond Halley (30 years his senior), Flamsteed's future successor as Astronomer Royal. He talked with Halley more particularly about what was increasingly occupying his attention, namely, his discovery as to finding the longitude at sea. (OQ 1:219)

Halley (1656-1742) had been active in endeavoring to provide

the means for the solution of the longitude problem by

securing accurate observations of the heavens, and for this

purpose made two extended voyages (1676-78, 1698-1700) to the

southern hemisphere. It would seem, from what Swedenborg

writes, that Dr. Halley himself had devised a method of

finding the longitude, but no such plan was ever published.

It is probable that he outlined a plan orally, adding that no

plan can be successful until accurate observations are

available; and this is confirmed by Swedenborg's observation

in his dedication of his Longitude, in 1718, that Halley

"communicated a way as to how the east and west longitude       

might be found by the eclipse of the larger stars by the

moon."        (Ibid. 284)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 53                                                                                             [1712       

Swedenborg very naturally discussed with Halley his theory of finding the longitude, but it would appear that Halley, who by virtue of his office of Savillian Professor was a member of the Longitude Commission, saw some weakness in it. At any rate, we learn from Swedenborg's Preface to his Longitude, published in 1718, that Halley showed "how the east and west longitude might be found by the eclipse of the large stars by the moon." Even so, Swedenborg privately thinks no solution will be found better than his own, "and least of all Doctor Halley's," and, he adds, "This he admitted to me orally." Read N.P.1933: 169.       (OQ. 1: 219)

Halley also talked with Swedenborg about his astronomical expeditions, telling him among other things that he, Halley, was the first to observe the variation of the pendulum at the equator, although he had never published the fact. Doubtless also they talked together about comets, Halley's book on which had been published in London 1705. (OQ. 1: 223; Long. p. 11)

Swedenborg's dealings with Halley on this subject led to the former dedicating to the latter his first published work on Finding the Longitude (Upsala l718). Dedicated "till Herr Edmund Halley, Prof. Savill. i Oxford i England."

It was Halley who edited the three volumes of the

Miscellania Curiosa which contained for the most part his

own papers and travels he recorded in Philosophical

Transactions. (D. of NB 993)

Of Swedenborg's literary labors in Oxford, we have a somewhat lengthy poem entitled "Lusus Extemporalis ad Amicum, qvendam Oxoniae 1712," which he published some time later in his Ludus Heliconius, and whose words indicate that he was in Oxford in May and probably in June. (OP. p. 53)

Also his verse entitled "Delia in nive ambulans," which is a translation of a verse by William Strode (1602-45) "On Chloris walking in the Snow." In the Sloane MS, in the British Museum, however, "Delia" is read instead of "Chloris," which perhaps indicates that the poem was written in London, and even that Swedenborg met Sir Hans Sloane.       (Ibid. p. 65)       (NCMag. 1895:10, 113)

It is probable that Swedenborg attended the University at Oxford, as was the custom of foreign students. Certainly he must have visited the Museum containing a collection of Roman antiquities; the newly established Clarendon Printing House (est. 1711); the large Physick Garden with its fire gates, It would seem also that he saw something of English country life as displayed at the Oxford annual fair on May 24th. (New Descript. of Pres. Roads, pp. 48-49; see Geograph. Data, Oxford)

When Swedenborg returned from Oxford - where it is probable that he had been joined by his friend Eric Alstryn - he at once busied himself about getting Benzelius's books out of the Custom House. But the only success he had was to procure a form with indications of the information that would have to be filed before the books could be released. Swedenborg could not stay to attend to the matter himself for he had to leave for Holland and France. (OQ. 1: 220)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 54                                                                                              [1712

He was fortunate enough to secure the friendship and

assistance of a man of great experience in London, namely

John Chamberlayne (1666-1723), a member of a good English

family, F.R.S., and a member of the Society for the

Propagation of the Gospel. He is said to have known sixteen

languages. He was the son of the Founder of the Year Book,

"The Present State of Great Britain, with divers remarks upon

the Ancient State thereof," - a work first published by his

father in 1667 and which continued to its 36th edition

published in 1755. The book was doubtless of some use to


Chamberlayne, whom Swedenborg was "well acquainted with," promised to attend to all Custom House matters for Benzelius. It is not improbable, however, that the latter preferred to send fresh books rather than go through red tape. Swedenborg notes, however, with regard to it, that this will prevent him using the books of the learned Librarian as a means of introducing himself to the learned. (OQ. 1: 219)

At this time, namely, in 1712, Swedenborg made the acquaintance of Doctor John Woodward (1665-1728), who was far more of a Geologist than of a Physician.

Dr. Woodward, who was a F.R.S., published, in 1695, a work       

"New History of the Earth," which sought to support

revelation by science, and which caused considerable

interest. But the work for which he is best known is his work

on Fossils. He had a very large collection of these, and his

writings on the subject bring up cases of masts, anchors,

shells, fossils of fishes, even whole ships, being found in

high places and far inland.

We may suppose that this was a subject of conversation between Woodward and the young Swedish student; but the conclusions which the two drew from the facts were very different. Both concluded that these fossil remains were due to a primitive flood; but Woodward went on to surmise that this flood mixed all things up, and that then they sank down to different depths according to the law of gravity. Swedenborg, on the other hand, was content with the evidence afforded by the fossils, that the land had been formerly covered by the sea.

Dr, Woodward recommended Swedenborg to read and to procure for the Library Lowthorp's digest of the Philosophical Transactions (3 vols.), in which the articles were not only abridged but also classified under the headings such as Mathematics, Optics, Astronomy, Mechanics, Physiology, Mineralogy, Magnets, Anatomy, Chemistry, Voyages. It seems that Swedenborg bought the work (for 50s.) for the Library, but on his own responsibility, as well as other books and two glasses for Prof. Vallerius. At any rate, he notes that Benzelius owed him for them in 1716. (OQ. 1:246)

Swedenborg read through the three volumes - a considerable undertaking for a foreigner - and regrets that it is not translated into Latin.

Woodward was particularly nice to the young Swede. "He was so civil to me," he wrote in October, "that he took me to some of the learned and the men of the Royal Society."


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 55                                                                                             [1712

Swedenborg might possibly have met Sir Isaac Newton and Sir Hans Sloane, both Presidents of the Royal Society - especially the latter who was a friend of Eric Benzelius. At any rate, at the time of which we now write, Sloane and Woodward were open enemies. (Dalin, p. 12)

Woodward also recommends The Memoirs of Literature: "in the literatur history, in folio, etc., and several other books, who, methinks have not escaped your, Sir! knoledge."       (OQ 1: 220)

Another work which Swedenborg admired and which he purchased for the Upsala Library was Harris's Lexicon of the Sciences and Arts, 12 vols. folio. 1708-10, "where," as he remarks, is also contained great deal of Mathematiks," This is the forerunner of the modern encyclopedia, and in its day was a notable work. (Ibid.)

Besides books, Swedenborg also bought for the Library, scientific instruments, and among them was to have been the latest type of microscope but the cost was L4 4s., and this was too high a sum to expend without specific instructions. This microscope was a new invention by the Royal Instrument Maker, Marshal, and Swedenborg writes that "it shows the motion in fishes very lively. It has a glas under it with a candle, which made the thing and object lighter: so that any could se the swiftnes of the blood in fishes like smal rivulets, which flowed in that manner and fastnes." (OQ. 1:221)

True to his resolve, Swedenborg had devoted himself during his stay in England exclusively to mathematics, including what is now called experimental and natural philosophy, and by October 1712 he had sent a list of his inventioner or discoveries in this field to Prof. Elfvius. What this particular list was, we do not know, but doubtless it concerned astronomical matters. But there seems no doubt, that it was in London that Swedenborg worked out most if not all of the inventions of which he subsequently sent a list to his brother-in-law. Of these we shall speak later.       (Ibid. 218-19)

As to his invention in respect to finding the longitude, he is convinced that he has solved the problem - at any rate, so far as is possible in the absence of exact tables.

"As concerns my invention on Finding the Longitude by the

Moon," he writes to Benzelius, shortly before his departure

from England, "I am sure that it is the only one that can be

given, and the easiest, and wholly correct method. The only

thing that can be objected against it," he adds, "is the fact

that the moon is not altogether reduced to its orbit by lunar

tables; but Flamsteed promises these, and it is known to me

that he has done so well that they will correspond in every

way and without error to the moon's orbit. If this is true, I

have won the whole game, and I make bold to say (after I have

sufficiently weighed the matter), that none of the others who

aim to find the longitude by means of the moon have won it. I

will merely suppose that were the motions of the moon

rectified, even then, not one of the methods that have been

projected by others could be used better than this, and least

of all Doctor Halley's - this he admitted to me orally."

       (Ibid. 219; LM. p. 39)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 56                                                                                             [1712

However, despite his high hopes, Swedenborg far from having his treatise considered by the Royal Society, was not even encouraged by his friends - perhaps thinking that where Englishmen had not succeeded, it would be folly to expect success from a Swedish student of twenty-four years old. After all his hopes, Swedenborg was justly disappointed. Shortly before he left England, and just after expressing the utmost confidence in his "invention," he writes:

"But since here in England, with this civil, proud people, I       have not found much encouragement, I have therefore laid it

aside for other lands. When I tell them that I have a project

in regard to the longitude, it is received by them as

something which is quite impossible; and so I will not talk

of it here"; and then he suggests that Benzelius send a

sketch of his scheme to the Abbe Bignon in France. (Ibid.)

Thus repulsed and discouraged, Swedenborg at last takes a rest from his prolonged studies; and this the more so since, as he himself says:


"My speculations have made me for a time not so sociable as

was serviceable and useful for me, and my liveliness had       become somewhat spent; therefore I have, for a little time,

taken up the study of poetry in order thereby to freshen

myself up; in this I think to make myself somewhat renowned

this year - of which, on another occasion; and I hope to have

advanced therein so far as can be expected of me."


He evidently has in mind the gathering together of his various poems and publishing them in book form - which, however, he did not do until he came to Griefswald some two or three years later. The letter continues:


"Yet I think to take up Mathesis again though after some

time, although I also pursue it now; and if I become

encouraged therein, I mean to make more discoveries therein

than any one in our age; but without encouragement this were

to torment oneself and 'to plough the seashore with

stationary oxen.'" (Ibid.; IM. p. 40)

By the beginning of August 1712, he had already shipped to Sweden most of his books and instruments, sending them in the same boxes with the library books. They were taken by Eric Alstryn who was leaving England for good, to be kept by his brother-in-law until his own homecoming. He expected to be in France by the beginning of September. (OQ. 1:219, 221; ACSD 44B p. 3)

But it seems that on August 15th he was waiting for money from his father, and he is grateful to his brother-in-law because the latter has written to the Bishop on his account.

"Your great kindness and favour" writes Swedenborg in

English, "that I so many times have had proof of, makes me to

believe that your advices and writings to my father, wil

occasion him to be favourable in sending me what is necessary

to a journy, and what wil give me new spirits to make further

steps in what my busines is. Believe that I more wish and

endeavour to be an honour to my father's and your's house,

than on contrary you could wish and endeavour me to be."

(OQ. 1:221; LM. pp. 38-43)

The father, meanwhile, had suffered his own misfortunes, for on Sunday, February 11th, Brunsbo had burnt to the ground.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 57                                                                                             [1712

His father and mother are obliged to move to a village,

Ranaker, two miles north of Brunsbo, and from there the

Bishop writes to the King praying for financial help for one,

all whose property lies in ashes and who must look to others

for books, clothing, shelter, etc. Money was provided by the

King's grace for the rebuilding of Brunsbo, but two months

after the fire, the Bishop again writes that he and his wife

need personal help. "We go little less than naked; and,

moreover, I have not a single book, and yet my office demands

one." Then the house, when built, must be furnished with

chests, drawers, table, table linen, beds, bedclothes, many

dishes, etc.; and then he adds. "I have, O King, two young

sons who are being brought up for your Majesty's service, one

twenty-four years old stationed in England for the sake of

his studies, and one of seventeen years, in Pomerania in war

service. I must not desert them." (ACSD 54B. 55)

The Bishop probably exaggerates a little; at any rate, his

wife was still a wealthy woman, and in this same year paid

for the publications of the second large quarto volume of his


At any rate Swedenborg got the money to continue his journey.

When Swedenborg left England is not known exactly, but it was not earlier than September 1712, thus making his stay in England extend over a period of two years and four months, or perhaps three years; of which at least six months were passed in Oxford. In the brief diary note to which I have already alluded (p. 36), Swedenborg says: "In London and in Oxford I spent a whole year or thereabouts." (Resebesk. 3)

He opens his last English letter to his brother-in-law with the following apology:

"I have often thought to overwhelm d. Brother with letters,

but since they would necessarily become barren if they

frequently followed one another, it is probably better that I

hold them over once or twice and draw them together into a

single letter, in order that this may become the more

weighty." (OQ. 1:218; LM p. 38)

And now Swedenborg leaves England where he will not again visit until the time when, in an inn there, he is to receive the great Commission of his life.       London, indeed, was the scene of the beginning and of the end of his period of preparation.

England and London were the first foreign places he had ever visited after the scholastic training in Upsala - the first places where his mind, wholly free from the influence of preceptors and honored professors, was to take its decided impressions, the basis of the direction of its future mental activity. And what shall be said of these impressions, especially in view of the fact that the day of Swedenborg's arrival in England marked the beginning of his preparation in the natural sciences.

Among the first great impressions he received must have been the evidences, so greatly multiplied because of the Sacheverell disturbance, of the freedom of the people. In Upsala he was accustomed to hear of



freedom of discussion among the learned, but for the people to have independence of thought against the Queen and Parliament, and this on a religious question, was beyond his experience. And herein must have been developed that love of political freedom and independence of thought of which we got glimpses every now and then in Swedenborg as a Member of the Swedish Diet.

And then the mental activity, of the learned world - bent on discovering the secrets of nature by experiment, freed from preconceived ideas propagated by the theologians - which, while not indifferent to the teachings of the Bible, nay, and accepting them, yet did not allow the search into nature to be thereby hampered. We see the result of this influence in Swedenborg's early writings where he seeks to confirm the teachings of the Bible by conclusions based on experimental facts discerned in the world of nature.

And Swedenborg was in England at least two and a half years. There he had made his first independent studies in science, there his ambitions were awakened to make further studies; there, in learning his various trades, he came into close contact with the sturdy and free-speaking English journeyman. The young man who left London in the summer of 1712 was a different being from him who had entered in the Spring of 1710.

Swedenborg had expected to go directly from England to France, but for some reason - not war, for peace had been concluded with France in January - he decided to go to Holland. Perhaps because of the opportunities for astronomical studies offered by Leyden University, and it may be also in order to learn glass grinding. (OQ. 1:221, 223)

From England, he says, "I went to Holland and to the principal cities in Holland, and stayed a good time in Utrecht where the Congress was and Ambassadors were assembled from all parts of Europe." (Resebesk. 3)

This indicates that Swedenborg visited Rotterdam, The Hague,

Leyden, Amsterdam, and perhaps other places in Holland,

before going to Utrecht.

In The Hague resided the Swedish Envoy to the Netherlands, Baron Johan Palmqvist,* who was also serving as Swedish Plenipotentiary to the Conference in Utrecht. Writing to Benzelius, Swedenborg says of his stay in Holland, that he was "most of the time in Utrecht with the Peace Conference." (OQ. 1:223; LM. p. 51)

* Johan Palmqvist (about 1652-1716). In Paris, first as Legation Secretary and then as Resident, 1686-1701; Envoy Extraordinary to The Hague, 1702-15, when he was appointed Hof-Kansler and removed to Sweden; died in Stockholm, 1716.

The Peace Conference was opened in January (29th) 1712, but

suspended on the following February 6th, though desultory

conversations went on. On February 2d, 1713, the formal

Conference was reopened and the peace was signed on April

11th. (Camb.M.H. 5:439)



It would seem that Swedenborg went to The Hague, Leiden and Amsterdam before going to Utrecht, and that the time he spent at Utrecht was from February to April, or thereabouts, in 1713. Here he was treated with great honor.

"I was in great favor with Ambassador Palmqvist," he writes,

"who had me at his house (in Utrecht) every day, with whom I

sat and discoursed on Algebra every day. He is a great

mathematician and a great algebraist."       (LM. p. 51)

See Geographical Data; also Miscellaneous Observations p. 58.

Sweden's part in this important Conference was more or less a

passive one, and Palmqvist was not directly interested in the

proceedings; thus, we can understand the possibility of his

seeing much of the young and vigilant Swedish student.

Almost as much as Palmqvist, if not more, must Swedenborg have met Palmqvist's much younger Secretary, the well educated rising Diplomat, Joachim Fredrik Preis (1666-1759), then forty-seven years old.

Preis had originally been intended for a theological career,

but his interest in political matters soon developed. Besides

a good education, including Greek and Hebrew, by a private

tutor in Riga, he attended the University of Leiden for six

months, after which he took one and a half years at Oxford

and Cambridge, becoming L.L.D. at the former. In Paris, he

acted as Palmqvist's Secretary of Legation, and when

Palmqvist removed to The Hague, he took Preis with him where

he became his Successor and successfully maintained what was

then the most difficult post of Swedish Envoy at The Hague,

until his death in 1759. (SBL. p. 362)

Swedenborg himself refers to the courtesies he received from Preis in Utrecht, and which he had not forgotten in 1721; there are also indications that he was greatly drawn to Preis - certainly this was the case in that critical year of Swedenborg's life, 1743, when Preis's home was to him a haven of peace and rest. And Preis's own quiet, modest, firm though unyielding character was the one best calculated to meet Swedenborg's need for confidential friendship.        (NCL 1896: 168)

Here also at Utrecht, Swedenborg had the opportunity of again meeting his father's friend, the Bishop of Bristol, who was present as the first English Plenipotentiary, and who had the advantage of being a fluent Swedish speaker.

In such educated and refined company, his own mathematical studies and the interest which naturally would absorb all attention in the weighty matters that were in daily debate in the Conference, and the grand public ceremonies that would be celebrated from time to time, all combined to make the time in Utrecht pass by quickly.

Swedenborg seems to have cherished a real affection for Palmqvist and his wife, and after he left Utrecht and was staying in Leiden, he wrote a long allegorical poem in honor of the arrival of Madam Palmqvist and her new-born babe; and if we are to credit the poem itself, it was composed during a walk into the pleasant country along the banks of a river (the Old Rhine) which runs through the town. The poem is entitled "To an



Illustrious Man on the Arrival of his Wife with her new-born Babe at
Utrecht 1713." It commences: (OP. p. 47)

A leisured walk I take, within the town so justly famed

       Which men call Leyden in the Netherlands.

A river bed doth pierce its walls, whose myriad winding course

       Makes many sinuous forms. Long this I walk

And the stream doth lead me to the spacious world;

       For on its banks I follow as a friend wher'er it flows.

As he walks along this stream, his mind, growing rested, is

filled with poetry, and he prays for the presence of his

Camenae:       (OP. pp. 48-49)

And while I summon to my side the cultured Camenae,

       Lo! ever me, a bird; a flutter sounds

Straightaway I upward look, and lo, on high through empty space

       A dove flies in the air, flutters its wings,

And hastens on its way as though 'twould draw, with snow-white frame,

       A beauteous car, and Venus fair within.

And every part of this fair winged fowl shone gleaming white

       All white its breast, all white its feathers were:

The color signifies a turtle-dove without its mate,

       Which cannot live save in the marriage state,

As now it nearer draws, I see the thing its beak doth bear,

       A twig,* methinks, thus carried for a nest.

A child, an offspring, one which it has plucked from off a tree,

       A green-leaved Palm, wherein was something ripe.

Not far from thence another tree, a budding Olive, rose,

       Its branches still unclothed with foliage,

But this did signify that spring was nigh, the time at hand

       When Olives once again are wont to green.

And here, with sinuous flight and twig in beak, comes now the Dove,

       And on an Olive branch doth sit at rest.

Then high in this same tree, behold, a larger Dove,

       The Mate, methinks, of our fair loving bird:

Who many motions made, and cooes of joy, and so prepared

       To sport with this his partner now returned.

              * In Swedish Qvist.

The Camena then comes and interprets this vision, applying it to Palmqvist and his wife. Then follow some pretty conceits about the good wishes contained in the poem being doubled when the paper is held above the water: (Ibid. p. 51)

And what I wrote to thee appears as written in the waves,

       And what I wish thee, e'en the waters wish:

And wishes I have twinned, the wave doth twin them once again,

       What I desire, desires the watery Nymph;

When on these banks I vowed to thee a thousand happy joys,

       The stream to thee did vow a thousand more.



After describing how he wrote the poem resting his paper on tree trunks, and thus inscribing on these trunks Palmqvist's name, the poem concludes: (OP. p. 52)

Be mindful then of Leiden, for every tree around its walls

       Is conscious of some memory of thee;

If laurel tree were here, thy name I'd grave upon the laurel;

       If cedar, 'twould be everywhere on cedars.

It must be borne in mind that in writing these and other similar lines, Swedenborg was both following the custom and taste of the day and also was relieving himself from his studies. However, he thought enough of them to think of publishing them.

Swedenborg also sent to his father from Holland - perhaps written in England - his first lines on the saving of his father's copper portrait in the disastrous fire at Brunsbo. In this fire there were several circumstances that were deemed remarkable. To one of them Swedenborg alludes in his Miscellaneous Observations (Eng. p. 34), namely, that the heat was preserved under the charred ashes for three months. The events to which the Bishop particularly alludes are the facts that two copies of his Psalm-Bok which had been lying on a table were afterwards found with only the binding slightly scorched, and the same was true of his Catechism, from which he concluded that God had accepted his work. Even more wonderful was the absolute preservation of a copperplate containing an engraving of Jesper Swedberg. Of this Swedenborg wrote:       (OP. p. 66)

                                                                                                To the Copper likeness of my Parent which was not

       melted and destroyed in the burning of his house.

A Marvel now I tell, this plate lay 'neath the flames

       Unhurt, when household goods were lost:

Lo, Father! as a Phoenix, so thy form shall be reborn from fire,

       And, livened by the flames shall wait its lot.

                                   (ACSD 468; SBL. 243-44; Doc. 1: 130)

Swedenborg visited Leyden both before and after Utrecht. It was then a great manufacturing as well as a university city, and Swedenborg took the same measures here as in London, namely, lodged with an artisan in order "to steal his trade" in the present, the trade of glass grinding, of which Swedenborg now possessed not only the knowledge but also all the necessary instruments and plates.        (OQ. 1: 224)

He also viewed with great interest the Leyden Observatory and its fine quadrant, the finest he had seen - costing 2,000 guilders. Unfortunately, there is no Observator, and Swedenborg intends, after his visit to Paris, to return to Leyden and ask the University Authorities permission to use their Observatory for two or three months - a permission which Palmqvist will easily obtain. See Geographical Data.

The resumed sessions of the Congress in Utrecht lasted from February to April 11, 1713, and it is quite probable that Swedenborg stayed there till about the end.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 62                                                                                             [1713
May - Paris

From Holland he went to Paris via Brussels and Valenciennes, arriving in Paris in May 1713, fully prepared by advice from Palmqvist and Preis, and probably with letters of introduction from the experienced Palmqvist and his Secretary Preis. Palmqvist, indeed, whose love of mathematics greatly attached him to Swedenborg, seemed reluctant to leave him, but realized the educational importance of the intended visit to France. At least, this is what I gather from an otherwise difficult sentence in a letter of Swedenborg's which he sent to his brother-in-law from Paris. After speaking of Palmqvist's favor to him, and his fondness for mathematics, he continues: "He wanted necessarily that I proceed on my journey, and so I intend, next Spring to go back to Leiden."       (Resebeskrif. 3; OQ. 1:223; LM. p. 51)

Swedenborg states as one of his objects in desiring to visit France was "because I desire the understanding of that fashionable and useful tongue."* But he had also the idea of pursuing his Mathesis, and also more especially of securing recognition of his method of finding the longitude - so convinced was he as to the feasibility of this method for the use of mariners. (OQ. 1:221-22; LM. p. 42)

* With this object, doubtless, he attended the Comedy; see p. 461.

Among the first on whom he called was doubtless the Swedish Ambassador, where also he met Peter Niklas Gedda (Jedda), 1675-1758, the Legation's Secretary who afterwards, in 1721, became Resident there. Gedda was more of a student than a diplomat, his favorite studies being Hebrew and Greek; and he spent all the time he could in his library, on which he spent all his savings.              See Lister, An Account of Paris pp. 29, 40. LM. .p. 45)

He had not been long in Paris, certainly not long enough to make learned acquaintances, before he was seized with an illness which "kept him from his studies" and confined to his room for six weeks. (OQ. 1:222; LM. p. 49)

When he recovered, he at once proceeded to visit the Abbe Bignon, the learned Secretary of the French Royal Academy of Sciences, with a letter of introduction from Eric Benzelius.

Joan Paul Bignon (1662-1743) was one of the best informed

among the learned men of France; indeed, he was called by a

contemporary "the maecenas of his age and the guardian angel

of the sciences and of learning." He was not distinguished as

a researcher or discoverer but rather for his great culture,

his immense reading, and the encouragement he gave to others.

Indeed, he was in many respects like Eric Benzelius save that

the one was a Lutheran minister, the other a Catholic priest.

(Hist.ARdesS. 1743 pp.185s; Brefwaxl. p. 5; Lister. pp.

37, 43)

Bignon was also a very eloquent man, and in 1693 had been

appointed preacher to Louis XIV. In 1702 he reestablished the

Journal des Scavans, of which he became Editor - it had

been commenced in 1665. In 1718, he became Royal Librarian.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 63                                                                                             [1713
July - Parts

Bignon received me, says Swedenborg, "in a very friendly manner. I offered him three discoveries to go through and examine and bring to the Society. They are the following: Two in Algebra:

"(1) By help of the first, algebraic analysis can perform innumerably many and most useful things which the analysis now in use could never perform."

"(2) A new method of treating Algebra, which finds the unknown quantity not by equations but by a shorter and more natural way by means of geometric and arithmetical proportions."

"(3) The Longitude." (OQ. 1:222; LM. p. 49)

       In respect to the first two of these inventions,

Enestrom justly observes that these new methods "only

contained some simpler ways, applicable in special cases, or

attempts to change equations into proportion, to which, in

his printed writings, he went back more than once."

(E. S. sasom matematiker, p. 4)

Swedenborg, however, was cautious enough to give the Abbe only some sketch of his invention, or, as he himself writes, "Merely a knowledge of some indications and signs of what it could do." Bignon, he further writes, "gave me at once a letter to Warrignon for him to look" through his three inventions, at the same time recommending Swedenborg to Warrignon as a relative of Eric Benzelius.       (OQ. 1:222; LM. p. 50)

       Pierre Varignon (1654-1722) was a member of the Royal

Societies of both France and England. Swedenborg himself

describes him as "The greatest geometer and algebraist in

this place, and perhaps the greatest in Europe." He was

Professor of Mathematics in the College Mazarin, and of

Philosophy in the Royal College. He appears to have taken

Swedenborg very seriously, for the latter visited him very

frequently and sometimes the visits lasted for two hours.        

(Hist. A. R. des Sciences)

It was doubtless through Varignon that Swedenborg met the former's intimate friend Phillipe de la Hire, whose acquaintance Swedenborg made and of whom he writes: "He is now a great astronomer and was formerly a great geometer."

       In mathematics, de la Hire contributed such to the

development of higher geometry. In 1678 he became an

Astronomical Pensioner of the Academie Royale des Sciences,

and as such took part in the astronomical work instituted by

Louis XIV. Among his astronomical writings were two which

Swedenborg probably made the basis of conversation in

reference to his own Longitude, namely, Tables of the Sun

and Moon (1687), Astronomical Tables (1702). (GE.

21:775; Lister, p. 75)

We have no record that Swedenborg's papers were submitted to the Academie Royale, or discussed at its public meetings.

It is to some of Swedenborg's learned friends in Paris, perhaps de la Hire, that Swedenborg refers as denying Halley's claim to priority in the observation of the variation of the pendulum at the equator. Halley in Oxford had told Swedenborg that he was the first to observe this, doing it during one of his voyages to St. Helena; but, writes Swedenborg, "the Astronomers here say that through Cassini (1625-1712), their fellow country-man, it was put out as discovered before Halley made his expedition." (Long. p. 11; OQ. 1:223; LM. p. 51)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 64                                                                                             [1713

Meanwhile, the longitude seems to have been continually active in Swedenborg's mind. He has not yet written out the work; it is still on "slips of paper"; but apparently could not be completed because the author had no observations whereby he could confirm it; he was still waiting for Flamsteed's promised lunar tables. But though he has not yet written out his treatise, he clearly has this in mind, for he writes: "I intend it for print, that so I can the better communicate it to the learned. It amounts only to three arks" - the first published work (1718) amounted to 2-1/2 arks. He was still more inclined to print, when word reached him of an advertisement inserted in the London Guardian of July 14, 1713, in which William Whiston* announces that he has a new discovery "to propose to the world." (OQ. 1.227; 219=LM. 59. 39; Whiston, p. 25)

* William Whiston (1667-1752) in 1703 had been appointed as Newton's successor as Cambridge Professor of Mathematics, but in 1710 he was expelled because of Arianism and denial of the Trinity.

This advertisement is undoubtedly the source of the following which Swedenborg wrote to his brother-in-law on August 9th, 1713 - for Whiston'sbook was not published until 1714: "There is another man in England of the name of Whiston who gives out that he has hit upon the longitude. The result of this is, that I also will hasten to give out mine." However, Swedenborg did not publish his work then nor until four years afterwards, and despite his own confidence, he then received encouragement only from the learned of his own country. (OQ. 1: 223 = LM. p. 50)

In Paris he maintains the same devotion to study that characterized him in London - in Holland, perhaps, he somewhat relaxed: "I avoid the conversation of Swedes," he writes from Paris, "and all things from which I receive the least discouragement in my studies." But he continues to frequent the bookshops, of which he observes that they have "a much smaller number of mathematical books than in England and Holland." Such books are rare also in all the libraries Swedenborg had seen, except the Royal Library. (OQ. 1: 223 = LM. pp. 50, 51; Lister, pp. 93-4)

       "Mathematical writings seldom come out here," he

observes, "and if they do, then after some months they are

altogether unobtainable. All the mathematicians send their

writings to the Memoires de l'Academie Royale des Sciences

and bother themselves no further about publishing and owning

them." (OQ. 1:223 = LM. p. 51)

Swedenborg's activities in Paris were probably mainly with the mathematicians and astronomers, and also with the further preparation of the inventions he had in hand. He may also have attended lectures at the Sorbonne, and probably was present at the public meetings of the Royal Academy.

He finds time also to visit Versailles, which he did in the Spring of 1714, and it was here perhaps, and in particular in the park at the Fountain of Apollo, that he conceived the idea of his Camena Borea (published 1715) or Fables illustrating the doings of the Kings of Europe, and perhaps wrote the third Fable. In the second, which introduces it, he describes in detail the park in question, and proceeds to lay down there the scene of contest and judgment between Mars and Pallas which was decided by Leon acting for Europa. (Resebeskrif. p. 3; OQ. 1:227; LM. p. 58)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 65                                                                                             [1714

We catch a further brief glimpse of Swedenborg just when he is preparing to leave Paris on his return to Holland.

He had just received a letter from Benzelius asking him to buy certain books for the Library, and also giving him certain introductions. Swedenborg looked after the books and was able to buy one or two but had no time to forward them via Rouen to Sweden, which was the usual cargo route. Instead, he left them in charge of Gedda (Jedda, 1675-1757), the book-loving diplomat, who promised to see to all and also to attend to future commissions.

In the letter where Swedenborg gives us the above particulars, he further says: "At the end of my stay in Paris, I made a universal visitation over the whole of Paris in company with some others, to see all that could be seen there."                                                                                    (OQ. 1:225 = LM. p. 56)

His companions were fellow Swedes, and he had evidently relaxed the tensity of his studies. During this sightseeing, he also took his countrymen to two of Benzelius's old friends, both Librarians, both in Catholic Institutions on the rue St. Honore, and both showing themselves unusually eager to do honors to Benzelius's friends; so much so that Swedenborg observes that Benzelius, when he last visited Paris, must have left "an incredible esteem and affection" behind him.

Among these friends was Father le Quien (1661-1733), the learned Librarian of the Convent of St. Germain on the rue St. Honore, who, "when he heard Brother's name, know not what books he should show us in his library, and what service he should offer us." Doubtless among the books he showed was his own scholarly edition of the Opera Omnia of John Damascenus, which had been published in two folio volumes in 1712 and which is still the fundamental edition of this Christian Father. (Brefwaxl. p. 6; CE. 8: 188; GE. 22: 70)

On the rue St. Honore also was another of Benzelius's old friends, Father le Long, who was Librarian of the oratory. The good Father evidently talked with Swedenborg about the work he had in hand; indeed, his visitors may have interrupted him in the course of that work, namely, the great Bibliotheque Historique which lists all known printed and manuscript writings on French history, and which even now is indispensable to the student. It was not published until 1719, six years after Swedenborg's visit. (Brefwaxl. p. 6; CE. 9: 142; GE. 21:1187)

It seems most likely that Swedenborg stayed in Paris for a year, and that he left it in May or June 1714. (LM. p. 53)

From Paris, Swedenborg went to Hamburg. That he again visited Palmqvist or Leyden is indicated by the fact that he went to Hamburg via Lille (or in Flemish, Rijssel, Ryssel, or, as Swedenborg has it, Rassel), and that his father addressed him a letter, dated July 23d, 1714, care of Ambassador Palmqvist, which was forwarded from Amsterdam to The Hague where it arrived on August 22d. It is further indicated by the fact that in April 1715, he refers to Palmqvist as "Hof. Kansler." (Palmqvist was appointed in 1714.) At the time of Swedenborg's visit, Palmqvist was on the point of leaving for Sweden, and Preis was taking his place as Envoy. Swedenborg talked with them of the usefulness of establishing a Society of


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 66                                                                                             [1714

Sciences in Sweden, and the promotion of learning, and found much active sympathy with his ideas. (Resebeskrifn. p. 3; ACSD 60B; OQ. 1:229, LM. p. 54)

The next we hear of him is on September 8th, 1714, in Rostock, Mecklenburg, over six hundred miles northwest of Paris. From The Hague, and while Denmark and Sweden were in comparative peace, he went to Hamburg via Hannover. Whether he found the time to make his intended astronomical researches in Leyden is not clear. While in Hannover, it had been his intention to visit Leibnitz; but the latter was with the Kaiser in Vienna and did not return to his home town until the end of September 1714. (Fryxell 25:131; OQ. 1:229; Alg. Deu. Biog. 18:205)

We should doubtless have read some interesting things about this first journey of Swedenborg's, but for the loss of the Diary or Journal which he kept and which, if we may judge from his later journals, must have contained full particulars of his journeys, the people he met, etc. "What I hear of the learned" he writes, "I at once enter into my Diary, which would be too long to copy out and communicate to my Brother." Unfortunately, he left this Journal at Hamburg, and since then all trace of it has been lost. It was left in Hamburg, and likely some of his effects, probably because of the warlike conditions which existed in Swedish Pomerania, threatened as it was by Denmark, Prussia and Brandenburg. The recipient was probably the Swedish Agent or commercial representative. (OQ. 1:223, 246 = LM. pp. 51, 94)       

When Swedenborg wrote to his brother-in-law from Rostock on September 8, 1714, he appears to have been in the latter place for some time; for he writes:

       "I am right glad that I have come to a place where I

have quiet and the time to assemble together all my works and

meditations which previously have been without order,

scattered here and there on some slips. Hitherto, all that I

lacked was a place and the time to enable me to gather them

together. This also I have begun and will soon complete."

Then, after enumerating his inventions, he continues: "There

are my mechanical inventions which have hitherto been lying

scattered on sheets of paper, but which now are well nigh

reduced into order. . . Moreover, in all cases we have added

the algebraic and mathematical calculation from which we

deduced the proportions, the motions and times and all the

properties which should be in them." (LM. p. 56)

It would seem, therefore, that leaving Paris in May or June and being already for some time settled in Rostock, by September 8th Swedenborg had little time for any extended stay in Holland en route.

It will be a convenient time now to examine the Inventions, of which he has spoken so often and which seem for the most part to have been elaborated in London. In his letter from Rostock, he enumerates fourteen of these, which he has put into some order.

       It should be premised in general that in none of these

inventions is there anything of a fundamentally new

character. So far as we can see, all of them practically

consist in the ingenious application of well known mechanical

principles and


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 67                                                                                             [1714

devices. One, however, must be excepted from this, namely,

the "Method of conjecturing the wills and affections of men's

minds by means of analysis." It is not easy to say what is

the exact meaning of these words, whether Analysis means

algebraic analysis or the analysis of the different signs

exhibited by features, tones and gestures - most probably it

is the latter. (OQ. 1:226 n. 13 = LM. p. 58)

Another of the inventions is probably more of a mathematical

study and development, namely, "Concerning new constructions

of cords or springs, and concerning their properties."


Of the others (the mechanical inventions), as inventions they are of a purely historical interest. However useful they may have proved, they are now entirely superseded by discoveries not dreamed of in Swedenborg's time. But they have a great value historically, as indicating the bent of Swedenborg's mind and its activity and natural abilities.

       As to some of the inventions, it is hard to understand

what Swedenborg had in mind. Thus, where he speaks of "a

universal musical instrument whereby the most inexperienced

player can produce all kinds of melodies which are found on

paper and in notes"* (n. 9) there is no indication whatever

as to how this instrument was to work - probably it was by

means of wires attached to a cylinder. Musical boxes were

unknown in the eighteenth century though in Grassineau's A

Musical Dictionary (edition of 1769, p. 153), mention is

made of "machines contrived to imitate music."

       * quae in chartis et notis reperiuntur.

       Rather vague also is the description: "A universal

sciagraphia, or a mechanical method of delineating hours of

every kind and on any surface by means of fire" (n. 10).

Sciagraphy is the art of projecting shadows, and includes the

art of making sundials. The invention to which Swedenborg

here refers may indicate a method he has discovered of making

and marking sundials by means of artificial light in place of

the sun, or, and perhaps more probably, it may mean the

divisions of the circle and the observations of the motions

of the sun by means of shadows made by artificial light.

       Other inventions difficult to understand are: "a water

clock with water as the indicator, which by its flow shows

all the movable bodies in the heavens, and produces other

ingenious effects" (n. 11). The water clock was probably

limited to indicating the movements of the sun, moon, and

planets, but whether it was a dial or a planetarium run by

water is not clear.

       Another rather obscure invention is the machine for

throwing out water by means of fire, and the way of

constructing such machines at the smelting works where there

is no fall of water. "The fire and the forge should be able

to supply enough water for the wheels" (n. 5). Speaking in

a later letter, Swedenborg says of this invention as being "a

machine for building [? operating] a blast furnace by


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 68                                                                                             [1714

the side of any still water whatever, and the wheel shall yet

be driven by the fire which shall drive the water." Of this

machine, no plans appear to have been made. It seems to have

been a device for raising water by means of the heat of the

smelting furnace in sufficient quantities to drive a water

wheel - such as usually is driven by water falling from a

dam. It may be that Swedenborg here adapted a device

mentioned in Bishop Wilkins' Mathematical Magic (p. 89),

whereby a flanged wheel set horizontally in a chimney was

made to turn a roaster or bastener; the hotter the fire, the

quicker the turning would be. In Lowthorp's Abridgment of the

Philosophical Transactions, moreover, there is a

description with diagram of an "engine for raising water by

the aid of fire" (p. 632) - in which steam is the motive

force. (OQ. 1:231= LM. p. 65)

The rest of Swedenborg's inventions are more plain, and, moreover, light is thrown on them by the books which he had read, especially two, namely: 1. Bishop Wilkins' Mathematical Works, published in 1708. 36 years after the Author's death, Swedenborg declared this book "very ingenious." It includes Wilkins' Natural Magic, first published in 1648, which the mechanical mind of Swedenborg must have read with great satisfaction. (OQ. 1:216 = LM. p.30)

2. Lowthorp's Abridgment of the Philosophical Transactions, particularly volume 1. Swedenborg declares that he read this Abridgment through, and he regrets it is not available in Latin.                            (Ibid. 220 = LM. p.42)

The remaining inventions are:

(1) "The plan of a ship which, with its passengers can go

under the sea in any direction, and can inflict much harm on

enemy ships. This invention, of which Swedenborg appears to

have (n. 1.) made no plans, probably consists of improvements

on Bishop Wilkins' suggestion in the 5th chapter of his

Mathematical Magic, p.105: "Concerning the possibility of

framing an ark for submarine navigation." Wilkins very

ingeniously suggests means by which the boat can send out

things and receive them while under water; how air can be

supplied; and how the boat can be maneuvered by oars and can

attack enemy vessels, undermining them and blowing them up.

When he returned to Brunsbo, Swedenborg intended to make a

plan of this boat for the Collegium Curiosorum, but no such

plan has been found.(OQ. 1:225 = LM. p. 57)

(2) "A plan for a siphon or pump for the quick hoisting of

large quantities of water" (n. 2).

Among Swedenborg's early papers preserved in Linkoping

is a page headed "Machina Syphonica Apparatus." It consists

simply of a few jotted notes. It is likely that this MS.

shows the actual state of Swedenborg's inventions until he

came to write them out for publication. (Ibid. 225 = 57; 1

Phot. 20) It may be, however, that the above was written in

connection with the Carlscrona dock work.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 69                                                                                             [1714

(3)        Another plan for the lifting of weights by means of

water combined with this syphon. (n. 3)

In a letter to Eric Benzelius, dated August 9, 1715,

Swedenborg describes these two inventions as follows: (2)

"Water pumps whereby a large quantity of water can be pumped

out of any body of water whatever, in a little time." - Of

this invention, Swedenborg sent his father three drawings,

either from Rostock or from Greifswalde where he went after

leaving Rostock. (3) "A machine for hoisting weights by means

of water as easily and quickly as one can do it by mechanical

forces." - A drawing and accompanying calculations of this

were also sent to Bishop Swedberg. None of those drawings is

now known of; there is, however, in Linkoping a drawing and

description of a hoisting machine which works by screws and

gears. This may belong to the present period, or it may have

been written at Brunsbo in 1716, with a view of publishing it

in the Daedalus. Closely connected with this is the

"Description of a Crane. The figures to accompany this are

lost. The article itself describes "a crane whereby one can

lift thirty-two skeppund cannon." (OQ. 1:230 = LM. p. 65;

Phot. 1: 102-4; Hyde, n. 95) It is not improbable, however,

that these inventions were inspired by the work at


Closely connected with the above is the plan for "making sluices (or locks) even in places where there is no fall of water, by which whole ships with their cargoes can be raised to a given height in one or two Of this, the Bishop received also a drawing with the necessary mathematical calculations. (OQ. 1:230 = LM. p. 65)

The three last mentioned of these plans all involve plans for pumping up large quantities of water in as short a time as possible.* In Lowthorp's Abridgment of the Philosophical Transactions (vol. 1. p. 625), various new inventions for water pumps are described, but evidently Swedenborg felt he could improve on these. (Ibid. 220 = 42)

* This was done in the Carlscrona Dry Dock.

One of the inventions is vividly reminiscent of the days in which Swedenborg lived - the days of walled towns with moats, drawbridges and Portcullis. The invention is:

"A drawbridge which can be closed and opened from within the gates and walls" (n. 6).

On the other hand, the inventions yet to be mentioned are suggestive of the modern age. Thus:

"A mechanical carriage which shall contain all kinds of works moved by the going of the horses." (n. 12)
This is, of course, a matter of the proper gearing of wheels and the increase of powers thereby, about which Wilkins has much to say. See Mathematical Magic p. 50 seq.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 70                                                                                             [1714

Then we have a "new construction of air guns, a thousand of which can be exploded through one tube and at the same time." (n. 8) Swedenborg's language is misleading here, if we are to be guided by a later letter he sent to Eric Benzelius, wherein he states that he had sent to his father "a machine (i.e., the plan, together with the necessary calculations) to shoot with air ten or eleven thousand shots at a time." Perhaps the shots were contained in separate tubes, each holding a line of shots and all enclosed in a single tube and to be shot off by the operation of a released spring or lever.        (OQ. 1: 230-31= LM. p. 65)

Light is thrown on the nature of this invention by an illustration included in Swedenborg's first draft of his theory of the earth, written in the Spring of 1717. There he says:

"One knows also how to shoot bullets through glass and metal

tubes by means of pumping out the air; and when the air is

afterwards admitted to the bullet, the latter must acquire

such speed as though it had been pressed by the most powerful

air or gunpowder."

Bishop Wilkins and also Lipsius describe how this lever was used by the Romans to shoot off a large number of arrows or javelins at a time; and the Bishop deems this better than gunpowder shooting or guns.       (Ibid. 270 = 152)

In a latter written a year later, in which Swedenborg is evidently referring to the same series of inventions, he includes what appears to be another kind of air gun. His words are:

"A sort of air guns which are loaded in a moment and shoot 60

and 70 shots in succession without any loading."
Swedenborg never draw plans of these guns. What appears to be plans of such an air gun is printed in Daedalus Hyperboreus (facing p. 50), but unaccompanied by any description. (Ibid. 231= 65)

We have also on Swedenborg's list of inventions:

"New machines for condensing and exhausting air by means of

water; and concerning a new air pump worked by water and

mercury without any syphon, which works better and easier

than the ordinary pump."

These pumps, Swedenborg fully describes and delineates in Daedalus Hyperboreus III; an improvement is described in a special little work he published in 1722 (see N.P. 1920:96, where this pump is illustrated). A drawing of one of these air pumps, together with calculations, was sent to Bishop Swedberg from Greifswalde.       (Ibid. 228 = 61)

Lastly, we have: "A flying machine or the possibility of

staying in the air and of being carried through it." (n. 12)

To this date perhaps belongs the diagram of this machine in 1 Photolithograph pp. 21--22. Perhaps it is one of three "machines" which Swedenborg promised to send to the "Upsalienses" for examination. (Ibid. 226, 228 = 58, 61)

In this connection, we note that in Lowthorp's Abridgment, which Swedenborg "read through," mention is made of the fact that Friar Roger Bacon says "he himself knew how to make an engine in which a man sitting might be able to carry himself through the air like a bird," and that there was a man "who had actually tried it



with good success." Wilkins devotes many pages of his Mathematical Magic to an attempt to solve the problem of propelling a "flying chariot." a heavier-than-air machine (see Math. Magic p. 112s), and he shows that when the machine is found that has the required capacity, and that can be sustained in the air, and given also the strength to work this machine, the problem is solved. (Ibid. p. 122). (Lowthorp I: 588)

We shall have more to say about this matter a little later. Suffice it now to say that Swedenborg pursues the problem along the same lines as the ingenious Wilkins (see Math. Magic 112s.)
       See The Mechanical Inventions of Emanuel Swedenborg, SSA 1939.

Swedenborg must have been very busily occupied at Rostock, and perhaps also after he left Rostock, with the drawing of plans of his inventions with the necessary mathematical calculations. At least eight such plans were sent by Swedenborg to his father, and he himself observes that they cost him a good deal of work.       (OQ. 1: 228, 230-31; LM. pp. 61. 65)

For recreation, he again turns to poetry and also occupies himself with fables. In the letter from Rostock of September, already quoted, he writes:              

"Now also I have time to bring my poetic productions into

orderly arrangement. They consist merely of some fables like

those of Ovid, under cover of which are concealed all that

has been going on in Europe during the past fourteen or

fifteen years, that so we might be able freely to jest with

serious matters, and to sport with the heroes and the men of

our own country." (Ibid. 227 = 58)
The reference is to the Camena Borea which was then being written.

The fruits of his experiences, especially in England, now lead him to the expression of a desire which he must long have cherished - the establishment in his own country of a Society like the Royal Society and the Academie Royale. And as the basis of this Society, he turns - not to abstract learning and philosophy, not to the humanities, but to physics, mechanics, hydrostatics, etc.; and in this he hopes that his own inventions may have some part. He outlines the work he would like to do on his return home, as follows:

"I have now a very great desire to go home to Sweden and take

all Polhem's inventions in hand, making drawings of them, and

giving descriptions, also comparing them with physics,

mechanics, hydro statics, and hydraulics, and likewise with

algebraic calculations; and to give them out in Sweden rather

than in other places, and set up for ourselves the beginning

of a society in Mathesis for which one has so fine a

foundation in Polhem's inventions. I wish that mine also

could serve thereto."       (Ibid. 227 =58)

Swedenborg stayed in Rostock, which was then in the peaceful possession of Mechlenburg, probably from July or August 1714 to September or very early in November 1714. From Rostock he then went to Greifswalde, a university city in Swedish Pomerania - but from 1713 in the temporary possession of Saxony - some fifty miles east of Rostock, and twenty miles south of Stralsund, at which latter fortress General Ducker was holding the city against impending attacks by the Danes, Prussians and Saxons. (ACSD 79; ill. Pom. Jahr. pp. 89, 144)


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 72                                                                                             [1715

In this small town, Swedenborg remains "a good       time, when also King Charles XII came from Bender to Stralsund." (Resebeskrifn. p. 3)

This return of Charles XII happened on the night of November

10-11/ 21-22, 714. The arrival of the King at once led to

inimical action on the part of his enemies. Early in 1715,

Prussia and Hannover declared war and joined Denmark and

Saxony in the attempt to take Stralsund and the King. They

succeeded only after much loss. But December 11/22, 1715, at

midnight, Charles XII left the city and, crossing the water

in a small vessel, arrived at Tralleborg the following

morning, having been absent from his country over 14 years

9 as a conqueror, and 5 as a defeated but yet obstinate man.

       (Pom. Jahrb. pp. 46, 51)

       The attack on Stralsund, of course, made all

communication with Sweden extremely hazardous owing to the

overwhelming Danish fleet. And this was the case also with

Greifswalde, which, though not at war, yet could not

communicate with Sweden. So Swedenborg lay there from

September or November 1714 until he was fortunate enough to

secure a place in a yacht which took the wife of the Royal

Secretary and favorite, Casten Feif, to Sweden.

(Resebeskrifn. p. 4)

How long Swedenborg stayed in Greifswalde, save that it was "a long time," is not known exactly. However, he had arrived there in September or November 1714, and was in Brunsbo, in June 1715. He himself declared many years later that he left Greifswalde "when the siege [of Stralsund] was to begin." The siege actually began in the commencement of July 1715. Swedenborg's words must, therefore, be interpreted as meaning that he left Greifswalde "when war was declared by Hannover," who thus joined Prussia, Saxony, and Denmark. This was in April 1715, and, of course, it involved the siege of Stralsund and the securing both of Charles XII and Swedish Pomerania. Thus Swedenborg left Greifswalde in April or early in May. That he was in Brunsbo in June will be seen later. (OP. p. 88; Resebeskrifn. pp. 3, 4; Fryx. 26:52, 61; CMH. 6.24)

In Greifswalde, Swedenborg occupied his time partly in arranging and preparing his inventions, and partly in writing and publishing three literary works. Doubtless also he attended lectures at the University.

He writes to his brother-in-law from Greifswalde on April 4th (O.S.= March 24th), 1715, promising, among other things, to continue making drawings and calculations in connection with his inventions. In that city, also, he meets two Swedes who have arrived from the army in Turkey, from whom he hears some news about Hinric Benzelius who is in Constantinople. One of these young men was Olof Estenberg with whom he had some connection in later life when in 1745 he presented him with a copy of Worship and Love of God. Estenberg had for many years previously been Secretary to the State Archives, and was at the time of the presentation a member of the Chancellor's Council. (OQ. 1:228, 230 = LM. pp. 61, 63; Fam. 7:935)

In Greifswalde Swedenborg is more than ever enamored with the idea of establishing a learned society in Sweden. He proposes to send over plans of his air pump to Upsala to be examined by the Professors there, and then to make plans and calculations in connection with Polhem's inventions,



"and thus to make them ready to give to the public when

opportunity offers. This perhaps might be a little foundation

for a society of physics and mechanics with us, just as well

as in other places. When it becomes known what use these

inventions have in connection with the working of mines and

ores and with manufactures which are being established in

Sweden [referring apparently to the manufacturing projects

being carried on by Polhem in Stiernsund], one can hope that

in time there will be some encouragement from one college or

another in Stockholm. . . . Such a movement ought to be

commenced on a small scale and gradually; and within some

years it ought to grow." (OQ. 1: 228=LM. 61)

We see in these words the underlying spirit which animated Swedenborg to establish his Daedalus Hyperboreus; and we note that in this sketch of what Swedenborg afterwards actually carried out, three or four years later in the Daedalus Hyperboreus, there is no trace of any reaching after abstract philosophy, still less after theology, and least of all is there any sign of mystic enthusiasm. Swedenborg is eminently practical. He will have everything based on the clear evidence of physics, hydrostatics, etc., and supported by the findings of mathematics; and here we are reminded of what many years later he said to his friend Robsahm, that he had never expected to be a revelator. "My purpose," he adds, "had previously been to explore nature, chemistry and the science of mining and anatomy." (Doc. 1: 35)

The question of money seems now to have disappeared from Swedenborg's serious consideration; at any rate, at Greifswalde, early in 1715, he gave to the printer his Ovidian Fables concealing "the doings of certain kings and magnates," which were then published under the title Camena Borea dedicated to Gustave Chronhielm, "the true Maecenas of the Muses with our August King."* It would appear that part of this work was written or at any rate conceived in the beautiful park which lies in the Park of Versailles between the Palace and the Fountain of Apollo: (OQ. 1:229 = LM. p. 62)

* Count Cronhielm (1664-1737) had been the tutor of Charles XII. He is known mainly for his great services in drawing up in clear language the body of Swedish law. His portrait is in Familjebok 5: 887.

       The first of the twenty-two Fables contained in the

Camena Borea is an invitation to his muse to visit the home

of Count Chronhielm.

       The second describes the scene and the occasion of the

writing of the next following Fable which is by far the

longest of all, and which is entitled: "The Contest of Mars

and Pallas." "In this Fable [the second]," to quote

Swedenborg's own summary, "the Author writes to his Readers

and excuses himself for not writing his Fables in song. He

relates that he was at Versailles when he wrote them, and,

indeed, in that sacred grove which is near the palace, and in

the park there where is the Fountain of Apollo. And how that,

after the first dawn he beheld the rising Phoebus, and by him

was despoiled of his lute with its strings, and also of his

paper; and how that all these were carried off to the branch

of a tree, and were turned into a bat." We give now the Fable


       "I was at Versailles: There is there a sacred grove

bordering on the Palace of the Palladin Hero. The palace

crowns the grove, and the grove the palace. Around about, one

would think there was



a little Olympus. Everywhere stand the signs and faces of the Gods; everywhere are marbles which, by their gleaming, dull the day and thy sight. Each image has its own delights, and possesses in itself something whereby it lives and by which it can all but speak to thee and tell thee who it is and what its character - so great is the sculptor's skill displayed in them. At the right are marble steps which lead thee down to the Rosebeds where, in time of Spring, grow lillies which represent only deities, and which breathe out their perfume and their odor. Vases and urns adorn the beds, which strive and contend with the other attractions to obtain thy first gaze, and the one snatches thy prize from the other, and loses it when again it is snatched away. Surrounded by this brightness as by rays of light, I betake myself to the Fount of Apollo - for so is called the marble in one of the graves - where Thetis and Nereides are in attendance and lave the God with their marble palms, envious of the true Goddesses, if Goddesses they were. For were those sea nymphs themselves present, they would choose for themselves as a recovered body, this form, those snowwhite breasts, and that office. It is the work of a godlike Deucalion. To right and left sends he his horses to their pasture; only the reins are lacking and the outpouring breath, and the froth, for them to be fitted to the wheels. Aurora has not yet reached her height; but when I sit over against this Apollo, the true Apollo comes from his waves and from the sea, and transmits his morning rays upon the top of the simulated Apollo, and, being golden, this receives the light of the approaching one, and reflects this light upon my paper. The paper was filled with the two Phoebuses; my hand traversed it in a double Apollo; and everywhere the pen and the letters grew warm thereby. Rejoiced at his coming, I pluck and strike the strings of the lute, that it my sing in harmony with the birds. But growing warm from his fire, ah woe, it loosened under my fingers, and with a groan it burst. When I touch the string beside it, this likewise gives up its last song. Two still remain, and one of them utters its shrill farewell. Ignorant as yet that these were the threats of our Deity, I turned back to a marble, an oval table, and lay out my songs to the twofold Apollo, and made public The Council of the Gods, and the Strife of Pallas with Mars, and of his Vengeance upon Leon, and the Crimes of the Great World. And as I am busied with these matters, the wind comes and plucks the paper from my fingers and sets it on the topmost boughs. As I follow it with my eyes, lo! in its place stands a bird with wings almost transparent. It was one of the Minyeidree and Nymphs who once related so many stories of the rapes of the Gods and the crimes of Apollo; it gave forth only a slight hissing sound, understood by the Daughters of Minyas. By this sound, I think, were told the Fables which they had learned from me, their master, and that they wished to speak of them in darkness and to be silent in the light of Phoebus."

       The next following Fable is headed "III and IV," though

why is not apparent - perhaps because originally it had been

divided into two fables.

       Each of the Fables in this little work is preceded by a

brief description of the plot, and these we will quote.



Fables III and IV: "It is told how that Jove divided his Empire of the world among his sons, and enacted that each of them should act for him as ruler for five years; and that when Mars had finished his term and was to have been succeeded by Pallas, Mars desired to commence a second term; but it had been laid down by the Fates that the two should contend concerning this matter, and that both should fly down from heaven to earth, and he who should be the first on earth would be the ruler for the term. But when they contended, lo! both fell to earth at the same moment. It is then told how that the Fates wove in their inexorable web the following: If the victory should be equal on both sides, Europa was to make judgment between them. But Europa devolved the task on Leon her grandson, and at once Elders of her world were chosen by her who should speak before Leon either for Mars or for Pallas; that Mercellus and Coronis the daughter of glory spake for Pallas. Meridamus for Mars; and finally, that Leon, showing an engraved shield, decreed that Mars should have the Empire for the next five years."

Fable V: "After Viseirus had been conquered by Bellophroon by the help of his golden buckler, it is told how that Leon, stirred by anger, hastened to his mistress Circe and said: Viseirum has been conquered by the gold of Bellophroon; hence Circe touched him twice with her rod and changed him to a golden dove; and then encircled her roof with the most delicate threads and snares, and into these, it is told, the dove fell and became prey to a kite."

Fable VI: "Tells how that Circe was borne in a chariot and drawn by two winged men who, when they refused obediently to go with their mistress to Leon, were turned into birds of night."

Fable VII: "Tells how Tarticanes loved Circe and knew not that Leon was his rival, and that when he found it out, he was touched with fury and rushed blindly to vengeance; and secretly stole Magica, a virgin belonging to Circe her mistress, and by means of her, called to the palace of Leon the furies armed with flames. Then is told the combat of Leon with the furies. But it is said that when she heard of this, Circe grieved and handed over to Leon her magic wand that he might use it in punishing Tarticanes. Hence Leon changed him into a water serpent which passed its life in the Tartarean abodes."

Fable VIII: "is a letter from Olivis to Leon. After Olivis's approach to Leon had been obstructed by Circe two or three times, she finally took it in mind to send him this letter and thereby testify to her love. She first states that her love had commenced in the cradle and in infancy; then she pours out her complaints against the Gods and the whole of Olympus; and also against Coronis whose snares and deceits she narrates. Many questions are asked concerning his daring in rushing into danger, and his striving to reach Olympus through the forest on Mount Atlas."

Fable IX: "Tells how that Ariadne came to the shores of the ocean and beheld under the waves an image of herself, and herself being crushed by the waves; and she sported with her own image; at sight of which, the God of the ocean was captured by her form, and deliberated with himself whether he should steal her away and should move shore from shore and receive her as she fell into his waves. But thinking this unworthy of him, he clothed himself with a royal garment and came to her, sublime in his chariot, accompanied by the Tritons



and Goddesses of his watery kingdom, and so confessed himself a suitor; but when Ariadne fled away, he returned to her on the following day changed into one of his own waves, and flowed under her feet; but when this also was in vain, he changed himself now into a fish and followed her hook; now into a diamond which was placed in a basket that it might be taken and be given a place in her tunic; now into a ring and necklace that beneath the gold he might embrace her neck; now into a laurel and wreaths and incense; now he changed into a ship, and provided himself with sails and masts, and invited Ariadne to his spaces and his banks; now into Lauretis the son of Mars by the Goddess Glory, and the love of Ariadne, and bound himself with chains, and placed himself before her and begged for her help - but all without making any advance. Finally, he returned again into his own form, and uttering threats, followed her and called her harder than oak, than stone, than his own iron and brass, more merciless than the bear and the tiger, and more icy than Borea and the cold, and that she will live as an Olive ever varying and inconstant."

Fable X: "Tells how that Dejodes when in the flower of his youth, while hunting, by chance saw Coronis, and at once burned with love of her, and said many things which came not to her ears. Hence, he at once let himself on to a horse, and rode to the Palace of Pallas, and begged Coronis with many prayers to be the partner of her bed, and received the most favorable signs from his mother Goddess in her abode; and, being gladdened with these, he hastened to the place from which he last had seen Coronis, and there saw Pallas and the Goddess of Glory, neither of them being in their own countenance and clothing but in one that was strange; hence, though not recognizing her, he spoke with his mother concerning Coronis, and received her as his bride together with much dowry."

Fable XI: "Tells how that Coronis fled away from Dejodes to Leon, but after ten years, again burned with love of him, and begged Pallas concerning him; but from her, she got the response that she would again become Dejodes' love if she were given him by Albion; wherefore, Coronis changed herself into a boy and, as it were, into her own brother; and when Albion was caught by the love of this boy, he promised her that if she wished to be his, she should send his sister back to Dejodes. Straightway she went off and clothed herself in her own countenance and garments, and on the faith of the promise was sent back to Dejodes."

Fable XII: "Tells how that Orpheus saw his Eurydice standing at the gate of Taenarum, about to return again to her life, and hence he burned with the desire of also following her from the abodes of the shades; and concerning this, he supplicated the judges and received the answer, that he would be allowed to follow Eurydice into life but not to be united with her. Hence it was given as an office to Morpheus, the God of Slumber, that he should transfer him into life by means of a dream; and when this was done, then, unknown both to himself and to the shades among whom he had been, he came among mortal men. But when, later, he went off to many parts of the earth to seek Eurydice, the story goes that he came toward Boreas and approached a Muse upon whom he came all unknown, heard her for a long time singing the fate of herself and Eurydice; and then,



immediately, the prophet touched his own lyre, the envious Muse was silent, and expelled him from her Parnassus: but, for a punishment, from the superior Gods, she received in her hair the serpent of envy. Then the story relates how that he came to the Temple of Vesta, and by the sound of his lyre moved the fire from the altar; whence the Virgins burned with wrath and expelled him from their temple, and wished also to kill him lest Orpheus, by aid of his lyre and his song, should be able to hold then off from him. But such was the power within his lyre that all who heard it became reminiscent of who and what they had been in the former existence. Hence, when he arrived at a Virgin company in which was also Eurydice, and there touched his memorable lyre, she with the others became reminiscent; but when she desired to rush into his embrace, then, by the law of the infernal deities, both fell back to their shades."

Fable XIII: "Tells how that the Muse migrated to the Boreal country, and there established a Parnassus like that which she had had on the soil of Greece. But since this was done without the permission of Mars, the Lord of that land, this Parnassus came to resound with the trumpets and the clangors of Mars."

Fable XIV: "Relates how that animals of various kinds were led by the Muse to a fountain, that in them she might see the power of her water; hence a horse, from drinking the water, became a winged horse, a she goat mingled the water with wine; the lamb become a sheep, and the leader of the flock and the dog sported with the water."

Fable XV: "In this Fable it is told how that a certain Lion was sent by the Deities into the world that he might satisfy their anger and commit much devastation and mingle a large part of the earth in slaughter. Finally, the Lion was surrounded by a company of hunters; but it escaped through the network and went to other parts of the world, leaving his lioness. Whence the latter was captured and burned to the Goddess Rhamnusia. [Nemesis]. But from her ashes rose up a ram which, to avenge the slaughter of the lioness, attacked the sacrificers and put many to slaughter and to flight."

Fable XVI: "States that a certain altar stood in the confines between the groves of Jupiter and Cybeles, sacred to both and to neither; but, that they might become the one's, it pleased them that the animals of the two Gods should contend concerning it, Lions and Eagles. But it is related how that the Lion won, and the altar was claimed by the Goddess as hers; whence Jupiter was angered and gave the Victor to the slaughter."

Fable XVII: "Cybeles, as the prize of victory, has turned two lion pups into virgins of the most beautiful form, and delivered to them the custody of her chariots and lions."

Fable XVIII: "When Dolydanes captures a certain Leonigena, it is told how that Cybeles grieved and took a ram into her chariot and sent it against Dolydanes. But he had first been changed by Liberus into an elephant, and when the ram had been conquered and wounded by him, he returned again into his own form, and by the help of foxes was carried into flight."



Fable XIX: "Tethyos, the Son of Bellophroon, and Polycith the Son of Mars and Venus, hearing an Elephant, were afraid because they have another Lion Puppy which they have overcome by snares; and they were turned, the one into a wave by Tethy and the other into an arrow by Venus."

Fable XX: "Relates that the Fates were indignant that one Ram had broken so many vines and stems; therefore, they made up for him a stem, and led him into a grove sacred to Cybeles, wherein he was followed by hunters, and they overcame him by snares and in a labyrinth and by other deceitful nets."

Fable XXI: "It is here related how that Minerva was touched with the desire of returning to the primeval age of Saturn, and solicited the Deities on this matter but received repulses. Therefore, she made herself a world like the ancient, which so circled in the vital auras as to animate all that it could; at the same time, it animated its Goddess Pallas with a new kind of life, and made her with child when she was seeking sleep, and in the space of a year she brought forth the infant called Dejodes."

Fable XXII: "Relates that there was a certain little dog which understood the speech of men and could signify to its master what it had heard. But it was presented to a Muse and was turned by Apollo into an infant."

This last Fable constitutes the "End of Book I," and that Swedenborg expected to publish a second book and even, perhaps, had the material in hand, is indicated by the catchword printed on p.103, although the last page, which would be 104, is empty, No second book was ever printed.

What men or nations are represented by the different characters in these Fables remains still to be ascertained. We note merely the following who are mentioned several times:

Leon - perhaps Louis XIV and France (Fable 3, 5-8, 11, 15,-17). Chas. XII perhaps in Fable 8.

Coronis -       "       Sweden (Fable 3, 8, 10, 11)

Dejodes -       "       Denmark ( "       3, 10, 11)

Albion -       "        England ( "       3. 11)

At Greifswalde, Swedenborg realized the opportunity he had spoken of when in London in regard to trying for a name in poetry. He collected his various poems and published them under the title Ludus Heliconius. They comprised The Festive Ode to Stenbock (1710), the Ode to Palmqvist (1713), an Ode written at Oxford in 1712, and a long and pretentious Fable which he composed perhaps while writing the Camina; the book, which comprises 18 pages, small quarto, ends with 2 pages of small poems on a variety of topics. Whether this work was published before or after the Camina is not wholly clear, but the probability is that it was printed afterwards.*       (OQ. 1: 219 = LM. p .40)

* Swedenborg, in his letter of April 4, 1715, says: "I have already put by one or two [poems], and now I have under press, etc., [the Camina Borea]."



Nor can any definite precedence in time be given to the third work Swedenborg published in Greifswalde. From the fact that the Dedication refers to General von Ducker being surrounded by war, it would appear to have been published in the Spring (April) of 1715, thus, shortly before Swedenborg left for Sweden. The very existence of this work was not generally known until 1903, when Mr. Stroh discovered two copies of it in the Library of Greifswalde University. Swedenborg himself, however, refers to it in his letter to Eric Benzelius of August 9, 1715. Later, it was published by the Swedenborg Society, London, in a zincotype reproduction. The full title is: (NCL 1908: 424)

"Festive Applause on the Arrival into his

       Pomeranian Land of

              CHARLES XII

The Phoenix of the Ancient Gothic and

The Monarch of our Northern Race, on

       November 22, 1714" [Old Style = NOV. 11

In estimating this work, one must keep in mind, not only the artificial character which during Louis XIV's reign had become almost stereotyped, but also the particular causes of enthusiasm which a Swede at that time experienced.*

* After the Kalibalik there was much written lauding Charles XII, comparing him to Alcibiades, Alexander, Achilles, Hercules (Bain, p. 217).

Although for five years Charles had lain in Turkey impotent,

unable to obtain money or men for the effort to retrieve his

defeats and yet unwilling to come home beaten - despite this,

such was the hold he had taken, not only on Swedes, but also

on the European imagination, that he was still popularly

regarded as the heroic prodigy of war. Soldiers and civilians

were drawn to him as to a magic charm. Voices were indeed

raised complaining of the burdens the King was putting on the

people, of his criminal and self-imposed absence; but a word

from Charles was enough to still, if not fundamentally to

remove, such complaints, and to substitute for them

confidence in the Lion of the North. What, then, must a young

Swede have felt, and especially one who had as yet no actual

experience of the terrible condition into which Sweden was

now reduced, when this Lion Warrior was returned to his land,

was within actually fifty miles of himself, and preparing

with bravery and experience, but at immense odds, to fight

the armies of six powers, and the fleet of Denmark! This must

be kept in mind in reading the Festivus Applausus, as well

as the exaggerated style of the age. The work is dedicated to

"Baron Carl Gustaf Ducker, the Supreme General of his Swedish

Majesty's Armies in Sweden."*

       * General G. G. Ducker (1663-1732) had been appointed in 1711 to see to the defences of Stralsund against threatened danger. Swedenborg comes into personal contact with him in later years when engaged on the Gotha Canal. Earlier in 1714, the Swedish Government had ordered him to leave Stralsund for Skane, but Charles changed the order and shortly afterwards himself joined von Ducker to direct the war.

The Festivus Applausus is a laudatory description, couched

in poetical language, of Charles XII's residence in Turkey

and his journey therefrom to Stralsund. It is dedicated to

General von Ducker at whose house in Stralsund Charles is

staying. The work is a prose



poem and, curiously enough,, this first work of the kind opens with the same thought as the Worship and Love of God, namely, the recurring of the seasons and its correspondence to the ever recurring course in the lives of peoples. In the Worship and Love of God, Swedenborg then proceeds to consider the story of the whole world as regards the end for which it was created; in the Festivus Applausus, he makes a comparison between the deeds of Charles and those of the heroes of antiquity with a playful allusion to the doctrine of metapsychosis.

Noting that the ancient Goths took service under Greek and Roman leaders and then returned to the North and there inscribed their deed in ancient letters carved in stone, Charles is introduced as the "Leader and Hero of our North," who "was commanded to live again in this age wherein we live, and to arise as a Phoenix from the ashes of the ancient race the parent of his own, and as the hero of its glory and its redeemer from further forgetfulness"; and he was to be led to the same places whore went the Goths of old, and where now rest their ashes. Were we to live in a later age, we would consider the deeds of Charles as fabled stories, saying that such men are now extinct.

After speaking of the happy omens attending Charles's early years, he is represented as being in the south of Europe led "by all Olympus" and "by the ordination of ages and of his own glory," and the narrative then continues: "Nothing is more plainly declared by the Oracles than that this land, which has given breath to so many heroes, was the last goal of his glory to which he would make for himself a way through so many victories and slaughters . . . Where should be the final ground of his glory save where his parent race first earned its rewards? that land where he might institute funereal sports at the tombs of his fathers, and might kiss the ground and salute the rescued land which is so filled with the bones of his ancestors? . . . And where should those places be from whence he would spread his name to the world save where lies the border of the threefold globe? Where Asia associates with Colchidian Europe and with Africa, wherefrom, as from a center, the fame of the Hero might run out to the shores of the whole world?"

Prior to this, Charles had already earned his laurels, but then he was surrounded by armies, but in Thrace, i.e., in Turkey, "he is left to himself alone, and with his sword alone, and with his virtue and also with a few warriors, he commences to practice the same martial sports, and to acquire the same glory . . . from which we may see that he alone . . . is the consort of glory."

The reference is to Charles's retreat to Bender in Turkey, after the disaster at Poltava; he arrived in July 1709. (Hildebrand, 6:319)

Then follows an extravagant account of how the Nile, the Danube, the Pactolus, the Ganges, besides many nations, all contributed to the support of Charles in Bender, signifying that he then received gold and supplies - which came from the Sultan - and was joined by Poles and



Ukranians, and aided by Turkish arms. (Bring, Chas. XII. p. 353)

In Bender, many plots were laid by one or other of the Sultan's Grand Viziers, who hoped by delivering Charles to the Russians to gain advantages for Turkey, and particularly the command of the Black Sea. By representations to the Sultan, Charles XII had these men removed and sometimes executed. "How many are the Viziers," runs the narrative, "and the wealthy men of the kingdom, has he cast down from their seats, or driven into exile and flight, and substituted others more favorable to himself." Bring, ibid. 351,367, 370, 378; Hildebr. 6:320)

The battle of the Pruth is then described, but hardly in accordance with the facts as now known. These facts are:

In June 1710, the Grand Vizier had secretly agreed with

Russia to give up Charles in return for the Port of Azov;

being unable to fulfil his part of the contract owing to

Charles's appeal to the Sultan who had promised safely to

escort Charles from his land, Russia declared war on Turkey

in November 1710, and in the following June, 1711, entered

into Turkish territory where the Russians were completely

surrounded by the Turks at the river Pruth.

Charles had been persuaded by his officers not to be present

at the battle, nor was any part of the Swedish Army present.

The Turks agreed, however, that no peace should be made

without Charles's consent. Yet, owing, it is said, to Russian

gold, though the Turks unquestionably had the Russians in

their power, they yet let them retire and concluded a peace

with them without the knowledge of Charles. In reading the

description of these events as given in the Festivus

Applausus, it must be remembered that at the time the true

facts of the case were not known; nor, indeed, have they been

known until comparatively recent years. We quote: (Hildebr.

6:320-21; Bring, ibid. 354, 362, 363-65)

"Straightway against his enemy he leads across the banks of the Danube to a river called the Pruth, a people rallied from so many lands, and a nation [meaning the Turks] of a gentler scepter, not once the victor within an age though superior in numbers; and he brings his enemy, yet glorying in a fresh triumph [the battle of Pultava] . . . to straights and distress, and encloses his swollen ranks with his army . . . and leaves him no way of flight save through enemy coasts and hostile ground. Hence, he who but now was so greatly exultant, mingled his exultant words with sighs, and they say that he loudly complained that he, with his consort and his whole kingdom, might be led away by so many nations. . . But when he ran about among leaders devoid of counsel, it is said to have been determined, by what Deity I know not, to prostrate the victorious nation by . . . certain jeweled arrows and golden apples. Hence, the leader of the Sarmatician world is rumored to have despoiled himself and the consort of his bed, and his generals of their wealth and gold . . . and himself of his gleaming crown, and to have handed them over to his victorious enemy, and redeemed himself and obtained from the Barbarians permission to leave his camp in poverty. O sacred hunger for gold! O needy victor! O nation so greedy for riches! . . . The victory has become a venal victory. The victorious leader succumbs, conquered by gold, and he carries off his burdensome victory only with bejeweled hands, and with laurels dimmed by gold. Mars conquered by Pluto, flees away with shamed countenance."


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 82                                                                                             [1715


Charles at once made representations to the Sultan, and in consequence, the man responsible for the escape of the Russians was deposed and subsequently executed, or, as described by Swedenborg, Charles "turns his anger into vengeance, and this against that very leader who but now was the victor. . . ; and he provided that he should be deprived not only of the triumph and the laurel but also of his gold and his name; and, in the course of a few months, of his life; and that his remains and his golden fleece and his head should be impaled on the high point of some palace on the Hellespontian shore, as a monument of ages; and that the trunk and the divided frame might by its body and blood make perpetual atonement for itself and its people."       (Bring, ibid., 367)

Charles had promised the Sultan that a Swedish army would come from Pomerania to join with the promised Turkish escort of 50,000 men, for the overcoming of Poland. When, in 1712, no Swedish army was sent, the Sultan wished Charles to leave his country, and when the latter refused, he sent orders that he should be attacked in Bender and taken prisoner. Soon afterwards, however, came the news that Stenbock had actually brought a Swedish army into Pomerania. The news came too late, however, and in February 1713, before the Sultan could countermand his order, Charles had been attacked, and in a desperate fight by Charles and fifty followers against 10,000 Turks,* he was injured and captured and was carried to Demotica near Adrianople and afterwards to Timurtasch as a State prisoner. Thus, to quote from the Festivus Applausus:

* This confused fight was later known as the "Kalabalika" (Tumult)

"He yielded himself conquered only to the earth and to Europe his mighty parent."

But it is added, referring to his imprisonment, which, however, was an honorable one, and to his wounds:

"What dangers must he have undergone! What deaths! and how often was he not reputed to have breathed his last! Through how many changes of the moon must he have passed his life among shades! and how oft has report said, that, weakened by so long a journey, he lay down with panting breath." (Bring, ibid., 384, 387, 390; Hildebr. 6:326; Encly. Brit.)

Charles remained at Demotica for some time, vainly hoping to obtain the promised Turkish escort and the Pomeranian army which should join together for the carrying out of his policy. But in vain. And so, in September 1714, he determined, with the Sultan's hearty consent, to return to his Fatherland. But the way was accompanied with danger. He would not go through Poland where his enemies ruled, and in Austria and Germany he was in danger of being held as an honorable prisoner, but still a prisoner, a hostage for the securing of the desires of these countries. When he left the borders of Turkey, therefore, he left in disguise and with but two companions, afterwards reduced to one. His return is eloquently described in the Festivus Applausus:        (Bring, ibid.,

"When he weighed the snares and the enemies . . . he declared with mighty mind, 'Lo, I will be my own guard.' He seizes his sword and from the thousands who are in sworn faith to him, chooses one and commands him to be his comrade. But as prudence must rule over virtue, and chance over prudence; and that he might escape plots by plots, and might behold his enemies as one present in their midst . . . lo,


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 83                                                                                             [1715

he assumes a personality not his own . . . puts on coarse and lowly clothes stained with gray and borrowed from I know not what soldier, and darkens his face with black hair and a black wig, and conceals more than half of his countenance so well known throughout so large a part of the world. . . At the same time, he suffers the beard to disappear from his face, and orders his companion that he shall call him comrade. . . Can we not see him hundreds of times in the presence of his enemies, and riding unrecognized at the side of those who were plotting against him? . . . and, at branching roads, learning from them the way to his Fatherland, and to glory? Sharing beds with them in the same couches and the same straw, and perhaps touching his head to theirs, and listening to then in safety while they are breathing nothing but the life and blood of Charles, and threatening him in their dreams. And perhaps also we can see him among his admirers, and hearing much from them concerning his deeds, and being much questioned respecting himself; and if he had merely said that he had seen Charles, and that he was now about to return, being loved and embraced on this account and forced to drink to his own safety and in one toast to wish happiness to himself and a safe journey to Him?"

The narrative then describes how that at the moment he first touched Pomeranian soil, the stars shone with unusual brilliancy, and the moon "looked down upon the returning one with her fullest countenance"; how that when he was but three hours distant from Stralsund, the moon went into eclipse; while at the moment he was at the city gates, she "burst out from the coverings and swathings of our earth and looked upon the Sun of our North with favoring gaze and announced his return to the inhabitants. If you place no faith in me, O reader," Swedenborg adds, "open the almanacs and there consult our skies." What are all these things, he continues, but "the plain omens of heaven . . . the oracles of Jupiter . . . the approval of the heavenly ones?" "What is signified by the fact that . . . when he was distant from his city by no more than three hours [this would be in the neighborhood of Greifswalde], Phoebus . . . fell into a kind of Swoon - [what is signified by this,] save that the Lunar, Phoebean and Ottoman nation . . . the dwellers on the Hellespont, had at that moment almost lost their moon . . . and had again covered itself with . . . Tartarean darkness . . . though previously, when our Charles was with them, she had shone on them in her fulness. . . And while he yet was standing at the walls of his city . . . this same Diana returned again to her brightness, and again covered CHARLES with her countenance and her light. What other is this save that ourLeader himself and our northern Phoebus who, for so long lay hid between the horns of the Caesarian [i.e. Austrian] and Ottoman moon, and for five years had suffered a kind of eclipse, as soon as he was returned to his Fatherland, again came into his radiance and glory and ancient triumphs. . . Can you be incredulous that by a certain hidden stream, heaven flows into our deeds and into our lives and the vicissitudes of things?"

Therefore, he continues, "let us crown our lances with garlands and with the laurels of the victor. . . ; let us cherish with our kisses the ground which first received Him, and embrace it; and, if the memory of our age go down to many centuries, let us eternalize that spot with games and Pythian sports, and there set the goal to which the victors shall run and merit the oakleaves."


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 84                                                                                             [1715

Swedenborg then speaks of Charles's personal appearance:

"Of what color now is his face but that of Mars; the picture of martial glory; the features everywhere fearless; a countenance of Heroes, utterly unfamiliar with fear and terror. Does not his hair, formerly covered by hair not his own, now strive freely upward from his forehead like the rays of Apollo, and lift itself up as though to the stars? His hair is not now scented with ointment and sweet smelling myrrh, nor ordered in gyring curls thrown over his shoulders like rays. Nowhere has his forehead any impediment, but is clear and open; and his mouth is ever favoring those who address him, and smiling upon them, and putting forth words few in number but full of a certain majesty and soul. His chest is broader and more august. The shoulders above it are muscular, and the arms, with their muscles and nerves, are powerful; his hands have become skilful with the sword. And his whole body and the part thereof as he sits on his horse is like to fame on the point of flight. For the rest, he rarely shines with glittering cincture. He is not arrayed in a garment of gold and laden with jewels and with a cape of purple, dyed deep with crimson dye and adorned with orders; nor with tunics embroidered at the edges and borders. Nor anywhere in his whole body is he like the delicate and soft members of the princely order. A simple close-fitting garment is thrown over his body, which does not add to its breadth but restrains it, and which has no hindrances and folds which the wind shall blow like sails, nothing to impede him from flying from one wing of his army to the other, and from being able to swing his right arm, and to use his sword against whatsoever limb of the enemy he will. Nor do we see him in finely built palaces or in temples adorned with gold and supported by columns, or in a castle wherein one would think the ancient army of Priam did dwell. He is content with a more lowly and ordinary house, and often with tents covered only with skins and linen and coarsely woven cloth; for he knows that he is more sublime than his roofs, and that the house is illustrious enough when he is within it; and under these coverings, he often has sweeter dreams than in the most glittering beds adorned with ivory and shell.

After a passage concerning the eagerness of the people to see Charles, Swedenborg continues: "Who could believe, when thou set thy last stop on thy native sands, and when thou wast scarce eighteen years old, that thou wouldst be absent almost an entire age. . . . O times, O changes. . . The same race does not now live which thou sawest in thy land of old. They who then were young men and in the most gladsome youth are now worn out. . . And if perchance thou return to thy home, they would rush out with three and unequal logo, and would look upon thee with sharper though now with watery gaze, and would carefully note whether thou art the same as he who went away. They who were infants when thou departed against thine enemies, are now of advanced years; now they are able to follow thy banners and thy arms, and to expose their breasts and their weapons to thy enemies. And she who was then a girl, scarce marriageable and the lowliest among her unmarried sisters, now at thy return is married and has numerous offspring, and with many can go to meet thee. . . Yet, when they hear that thou hast returned, they will again begin to breathe, again revive and draw new breath. . . All will thus be normal, and the winter into which our Boreal and icy north has passed will become Spring; and the ground will command its flowers to be reborn, and the whole land will again resound with gladness. The Muses who in


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 85                                                                                             [1715

that cold and gloomy sky are thought to grow sluggish, will fly once more to their harps, and in their Parnassus will order the wreath again to be made for thee, CHARLES! and with warming souls and in Phoebean measures will celebrate Thee, our Apollo now returned. And while thou art as yet on the point of returning to thine own people, these Northern Goddesses will applaud thee with their strings and also with their hands, as now do the Pomeranians. Give ye Plaudits, we have fulfilled our applause."

As appears from the Festivus Applausus, Swedenborg was not ill informed - though by no means exactly informed - as to events in Turkey, and we may note in this connection that when in Paris he had received a letter from Henry Benzelius, a young brother of Eric and a fellow student of Swedenborg himself but one year his junior, dated Timurtasche, April 30, 1713, that is to say, the place where Charles XII had been carried after the Kalabalika of February 1713, and stating that he had been with the King for six months.* Moreover, in Greifswalde, he had met Secretaries Estenberg and Bernard Cederholm, who had been with the King at the Kalabalika and afterwards at Timurtasche - indeed, it was Cederholm who had provided the false pass under which the King traveled as Captain Peter Frisk Pitesci. They arrived in Greifswalde in April 1715, having left Constantinople in the preceding May. Both were probably well acquainted, at any rate, superficially, with the affairs of Charles in Turkey. (Doc. 1:226, 235; Attar Taf., Cederholm; Mottraye. 57, 324; Bring, Chas. XII p. 409)

* Charles XII was in Timurtasche in October 1713, and had probably been there since February. See Famil.jebok 13: 983.

The tone of the Festivus Applausus may strike the modern reader as being fulsome, yet we cannot avoid the conclusion that beneath all the external grace dictated by the customs of the age, there lay with Swedenborg a genuine admiration of Charles XII - an admiration which seems to have grown greater when he came into actual contact with the King a year or two later. This is further indicated by a curious statement made in the Spiritual Diary n. 4704:

"Many transactions between me and Charles XII were recounted,

and it was then manifestly shown that the Lord's Providence

had been in the most minute particulars . . . also that

unless the state of Charles XII had been changed from good

into anger, one person would wholly have perished."

Before leaving these early publications of Swedenborg - the Camena Borea, the Ludus Heliconius, and the Fastivus Applausus - it may be noted that in publishing one or other of them - but probably the first - Swedenborg was following in a partial way the common practice of learned travelers, which was to publish a disputation preparatory to receiving a degree from some foreign university. Perhaps also he had in mind the partial fulfilment of a promise made to his father, "to publish a specimen Academicum," though the real fulfilment of this promise was the publication of Daedalus Hyperboreus.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 86                                                                                             [1715

At what time Swedenborg sailed from Greifswalde for Sweden is not known. He himself declares that he left Greifswalde for Sweden "when the siege [of Stralsund] was to begin." The siege actually commenced in the beginning of July 1715, and, as will appear later, Swedenborg was in Brunsbo in June of that year. His words must, therefore., be interpreted as meaning "when war was declared," namely, by Prussia, Saxony and Denmark; for the object of this declaration was the seizure of Stralsund and Charles XII in person. This declaration of war was made in May 1715, and we may presume that Swedenborg left for Sweden in that month. This is further indicated by an Epistolary Hymn directed by Swedenborg to "Virum, Celsissimum" who, though not named, is plainly Count Gustaf Cronhjelm, to whom he now sends a copy of the Camena Borea which he had dedicated to him in Greifswalde. In the state of the times, it need not excite wonder that no earlier occasion had presented itself - especially since, as hinted in the Epistolary letter, Swedenborg did not personally know Count Cronhjelm. It was not till August that he told Eric Benzelius about the work and promised to send him a copy; and it. was on or about midsummer's day that Swedenborg wrote the Epistolary Ode which was to accompany the presentation of the book to Count Cronhjelm. (Resebeskrifn. p.4; Fryx. 26:52, 61; CMH. 6:24; OQ. 1:231 = LM. p. 66)

Whether Swedenborg sailed to Skane or to Stockholm or to Karlskrona, or to some other port, we do not know. Probably to Stockholm. See Nya Kyrka Tidningar, 1917, p. 42. (Attar Tafl. 1; p.151)

But soon after his arrival at Brunsbo, he wrote a Carmen Epistolare which was to accompany a copy of the Camena Borea to be sent to Count Cronhjelm. In this Carmen, the "Borean Muse," whom the author numbers "among the least of the Heliconides," is represented as sitting with Swedenborg under a myrtle tree. She then addresses him as follows: (OP. p. 67) (See Fryx. 34:14, 31:18)

"Tell me, Prophet, why thou restest as a farmer on the ground,

In the shade, living softly in a village?
Why hidest thou at home who but now wert a sojourner in foreign lands

And art but lately returned to become an heir of thy country?
Rise, I pray! haste again to return to the city,

Which swells ambitious with its leader and its people.

. . . . .

O how the populous city would delight us nymphs."

To this the Prophet answered in a joking way, warning her of the dangers of the city. However, if the Muse insists on going, he gives her the following advice:

"When thou reachest the city, leave the many palaces,

And let the halls be hidden from thy sight;
Nor stay your steps, nor sing your songs,

Until you see the house of [Cronhjelm].
Lo, methinks it is yellow, being overlaid with pale yellow mortar."

She is then to tell her name and not to fear, for the Count is affable to the nymphs:


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 87                                                                                             [1715

"He is a man still young,* if one is to believe report,

Though, indeed, he was not known to me by face.
His countenance is amiable, smiling, and open to the Muses:

And thus, as it were, like a Maecenas . . .

* 51 years. He was born in 1664.

Flame and ever new strength shines out of his eyes,

Wherewith he beholds the doubtful changes of the times.
As soon as thou seest him, he will be to thee a great Apollo;

And perhaps Apollo himself had a like countenance."

The Muses is then to say that she has come to present to him a little book:

"With the name Camena Borea,
And to mention my name as its Parent;

And thou shalt pleasantly relate to him thy many pleasantries. . . .

They are only fables or things without weight.

Such as garrulous old women tell when evening comes.
And I desired them to be without weight.

That they might disperse the many weighty matters on thy mind,"

Later the poem goes on:

"Great Count, when I send this Camena Borea to thee,

It is midsummer night, which all but conquers day with its brilliancy;
And which the young men and the lovely maidens celebrate with sports . . .

In the midst is placed a mast, high in air,

From which hangs an olive with laurels.
And around which the young men and bridesmaids dance,

Joining hand to hand." . . .

They say that if they dance and strike the chords on this night,

The next year will be a prosperous one."

And so Swedenborg puts forth his nocturnal song as an omen for the coming year:

"May a thousand Muses sing to thee,

And the Borean Muse make herself dear to thee."

Here Swedenborg is probably describing a scene at Skara or Brunsbo or in thousands of other places in Sweden on midsummer's day (June 24).

We may presume that Swedenborg arrived in Sweden in May 1715, after an absence of five years. At home he found a new brother-in-law, the Jonas Unge for whose disputation he had written a verse, and who in January 1715 had married his sister Catharine. (ACSD 8; Doc. 3:743)




Meanwhile came the question of employment for Swedenborg. For men of the upper classes in Sweden at that time there was only one respectable or even possible occupation, namely, in the service of the state.

Already on October 21, 1714, while Swedenborg was still abroad but evidently expected home, Bishop Swedberg wrote to the Government (i.e. to the Queen Ulrica Eleonora), recommending his future son-in-law, Magister Jonas Unge, who had just returned from a two years' sojourn in oxford, Amsterdam, Leyden and Utrecht. He then adds:

"I have also another son, Emanuel Swedberg by name, who,

after disputations in Upsala and in order to continue his

studies, has for five years been in England, Holland and

France, and now, as I think, he is visiting in Rostock or

Greifswalde, being much given to Mathesis and Mechanics. With

God's help, he will become a useful subject to your Majesty,

either in the University or elsewhere."

Thus early was there a suggestion of Swedenborg as a professor. (ACSD 77; Doc. 3:1330; SSH. 1:548)

A month later, namely on November 25th, the Bishop again wrote to the King:

"Most Mighty and Gracious King: In my last humble memorial I

mentioned that I have a son, Emanuel, who has been for four

years abroad in. England, Holland and France, and is now

living at Greifswalde. He has made good use of his time, is

master of the requisite languages, and is expert in

mathematics and mechanics. If your Royal Majesty has need of

such a one, I assure you he will give you satisfaction."

Some months later but before Swedenborg left the Continent, namely, on February 9, 1715, the Bishop wrote to the King in Stralsund, asking him to ennoble his children, thus enabling them to enter into the higher offices of the State which none but noblemen could fill:

"Most Mighty King, Most Gracious Lord: It has pleased God to

allot me seven children, for whose well-being I am bound to

care. Of these, three are sons - the eldest seeks to render

himself completely accomplished for the service of your royal

Majesty and our Fatherland, by courses of study; the second

(Eliezer) does so likewise in business connected with

mining; and the third (Jesper) also, by service for two years

in your Majesty's army in Pomerania, but now by a voyage to

the far Indies, or, as it is called, New Sweden. The

daughters have all entered into matrimony with honorable

persons - two are married to men in the priestly estate, one

(Anna) to the Librarian of your Majesty's Academy in Upsala,

Eric Benzelius, and the other (Catherina) to a Pastor, here

in West Gothland, Jonas Unge; of the other two, one

(Margaretta) is married to Lundstedt, the Master of the

Horse in your Majesty's Life Guards, and the other (Hedwig)

to Lars Benzelstierna, the Master of the Mines in East and

West Bergslagen.

"For these I make bold, in humility, to ask        that your

majesty will be pleased to show me the grace which other of

my brethren in office experience who are similarly

circumstanced, and allow my children and the two sons-in-law

last mentioned, Calvary Captain Lundstedt and Mining Master

Benzelstierna be honored with noble rank and name. This will

be an encouragement to them in humility



to make themselves still more worthy of your Majesty's and

the country's service; and to me, your Majesty's subject, it

will be a special pleasure at my now advancing age, to be

made happy by my gracious King's favor."* (LM. p. 64.)

       * This letter by Jesper Swedberg, as well as his letters of Oct. 21 and Nov. 25, 1714, is quoted by White in his Life of Swedenborg (1867). 1:43, 36-7, but cannot be found in the Riksarkiv. No information is available as to its reception by the Government.

However, it was not so much the obtaining of nobility - to a Bishop's son, this was sure to come in time - that took the Bishop's attention as the necessity under which his 27 year old son lay to make use of his education and gifts in the service of the King. In the effort to find him an office, Bishop Swedberg, on July 12, 1715, writes to the recently (1714*) appointed Governor of West Gothland, Casten Feif, a favorite of the King and who was still with the latter in Stralsund:

"My son Emanuel, after five years' travel in foreign lands,

is now in good health and has come home. I hope he will

become useful n some university. He is ready in the oriental

languages and in he European, but especially is he at home in

Poetry and Mathesis." (ACSD 82; Doc. 3:742; LM. p. 64)

One of Swedenborg's first cares when he reached home was to endeavor to gather up the various more or less elaborate plans of his inventions and of the calculations in connection with them. He had sent eight of these plans to his father, but when he got home none could be found. In August 1715, he writes to Eric Benzelius:


"I have very thoroughly searched for the machines which I

sent to d: Father some time ago and which were eight in

number. As yet I have not been able to get a trace of where

he put them by. He thinks they have been sent over to d:

Brother, which I hope for from my heart since it cost me work

enough to lay them out, and during the winter I have no time

to make them over again."

He then describes the lost plans, which comprised three plans of water pumps, one of a hoisting machine worked by water, one of sluices or looks to be operated where there is no water-fall, one of an air gun to shoot thousands of shots at a time; and perhaps also, but without the mathematical calculations, a plan of his underwater boat, also a blast furnace where the motive power shall be furnished by the fire in the absence of failing water. Another invention of which he speaks at this time is an air gun which is "loaded in a moment and will shoot sixty to seventy shots in succession without any new loading." (OQ. 1: 230 = LM. p. 65)

Whether the sketches were found in Upsala, we do not know. Certainly, except for the plan of an air pump and the air gun, they have not come down to our day.

In this letter to Benzelius, he expresses the wish that he could see some of his machines in operation, and he regrets the lack of material to build them - a regret which we may well share today.

It must have been at this time that he invented his hoisting machine. Meanwhile, while waiting for suitable work, Swedenborg had not been long at


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 90                                                                                             [1715

home before his active mind busied itself with the doing of something looking to the advancement of science; and most of all, his mind dwells on the old question of finding the longitude. We can in fancy see the returned traveler relating to his father and mother his experiences in foreign lands, and, among other things, telling them of the magnificent prizes offered by the British Government (from ten to twenty thousand pounds) to him who would discover the longitude at sea within certain degrees of exactness (60 - 30 miles.); and of how he most certainly had solved the problem, but for one thing. His theory, he was convinced, was absolutely without a flaw, but to carry it out required exact lunar tables, and these had not yet been published. Flamsteed had promised them, but Flamsteed was an old man and, moreover, sickly and disgruntled. Swedenborg, therefore, resolved to set up an observatory himself. He was well equipped in learning, and in England and Holland, he had learned trades which would now stand him in good stead. And at that time there was not a single observatory in the whole of Sweden, nor had there been save inadequate private ones set up by professors. (White, 1:34; UUH. 2:2:322)

This project occupied his mind as early as June, and by July he had already determined on Kinnekulle, a hill on Lake Venner some fifteen miles north of Skara, as the scene of his future observatory. On July 11, Bishop Swedberg, in the letter to Governor Feif from which we have already quoted, says of his son:


"He is minded to build himself an observatory on the top of

Kinnekulle near Skara, with the intention of enabling him to

find the longitude in the great ocean, for which many powers

have set up great sums of money for him who shall find it.

If there be any opening at any academy here In Sweden, may it

please the Herr Well-born Governor to advance him thereto.

With God's help he will honor his position." (LM. p. 64)

Finally, August 11th was fixed for the day of investigation with a view to building an observatory.

"The day after tomorrow," he writes on August 9, "I am going

to Kinnekulle to pick out for myself a place for a small

observatory wherein I intend during the winter to make some

observations pertaining to our horizon whereby my discoveries

on the longitude of places could be confirmed." (OQ. 1:231

= LM. p. 65)

But though Swedenborg went to Kinnekulle, and probably spent some days there, he never built an observatory; for one thing, his attention was soon engrossed on work for the King; and for another, when he talked of the matter with Benzelius, the latter suggested that it might be possible to arrange to have an observatory built in Upsala - as we shall see later. Still, his stay at Kinnekulle bore fruit, for it was then that at any rate he commenced those close and minute observations which he makes use of a little later in his theory concerning a primeval flood. In a description of this hill, which constitutes chapter 1 in his Height of Water, he indicates that he had made some examination of the hill", and had talked with the peasants concerning it; and it would seem likely that in view of his contact with the English Geologist Woodward, he would take the occasion to note the strata of the mountain. These, he describes in some detail in chapter VIII of the work already mentioned.

Moreover, he is fully confirmed in his idea that Kinnekulle would be an ideal spot for an observatory - an idea which he voiced some years later, as follows:


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 91                                                                                             [1715

"At the top of Kinnekulle, the common people have noticed

things which are worthy of investigation by the learned,

namely, that some clouds, rain and thunder begin first, as it

were, at the top; so that one who lives on that height may

appear to be its Jupiter, and the hill a small Olympus and

heaven, since from there the nature of the air has partly its

origin. In a word, it is a height with which Nature has

adorned the West Gothian land and provided the most

incomparable observatory in the world were there only a

Cassini, a Brahe, or an Helvetius who would give it their

name and fame." (H. of W. ch. I)

With all these private activities, Swedenborg is still thinking of State employment, and his thoughts turn to the Chair of a Professor. In August 1715, he asks his brother, in case there is a vacancy, to speak about him to the professors. But it is not in his mind to use the undue influence of his relationship with the Librarian or the Bishop. His request is that his brother will

"advance me with some of the Professors, to anything which

may offer itself. For the rest," he adds, "I will see to

myself.," (OQ. 1:231 = LM. p. 66)

After the visit to Kinnekulle, he went to Foglas on Lake Vetter - perhaps to see if a site for an observatory could be found there, or more probably he went for pleasure. Then Swedenborg again revisits Upsala, a town which he has not seen since his public disputation in 1709. But how different the young man who returns in 1715 from the student who left in 1709. The University is the same, the Professors almost unchanged. There were some changes, however, in Swedenborg's family. When he had left, his sister had a son and daughter, Ericulus (aged 4) and Margaretha (aged 1-1/4). Now she has four children, the oldest already a ten-year old student in the University, and the other an infant of six months old; and we can imagine the delight Swedenborg had in playing with these nephews and nieces, and perhaps in talking Latin or mechanics to the student Ericulus.                                                                                    (ACSD 85)

It is probable, as will be seen later, that this first visit to his Alma Mater was a long one, probably commencing at the end of August and not ending until November 20.

We can picture him as an honored guest in the home of his sister Anna and her husband, who, with "little Eric," must have been eager to hear the experiences of the long-absent traveler. We can imagine also the earnestness with which Swedenborg discoursed with his learned brother-in-law and with the liberal Professors of the Collegium Curiosorum on the development of learning in Sweden. We can imagine him also meeting socially distinguished Swedes and foreigners, such as Peter Ribbing, the Governor of Upsala, Lam, the great theological Professor, and active Riksdagman Doctor Molin, besides many others - professors, soldiers, and foreign visitors. (Anec. Benz. p. 47)

Of course, there was much talk between Swedenborg and his brother-in-law about the desired observatory, and it is doubtless as a result of these talks that Benzelius, later on, hit upon the discovery of iron pipes, etc., which seemed to promise funds for the building of it. Intimately associated with this observatory was the Collegium Curiosorum, the idea that finally developed being that the Collegium Curiosorum, might itself support the observatory from royal grants. The talks must also have gone back to Polhammar's Mechanical Laboratory, the establishment of such a Laboratory at Upsala - and it is perhaps at this time and in this connection that the idea of Swedenborg teaching in the University became first breached.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 92        

At the end of the preceding March, Eric Benzelius had received a visit from Pastor Bjorck, returned in 1713 from his seventeen-year pastorate in Wilmington, America, and - especially in view of the fact that Swedenborg's brother Jesper was in the country which Bjorck had just left - it is more than probable that what Bjorck had told his host would more than once be a subject of conversation with Swedenborg, giving him his first knowledge of the American Indian.        (Amer. Illum. pp. 8, 83, 96)

Bjorck is relations are noted down by Benzelius as follows:

"They worship two gods, a good and an evil. They sacrifice to

the evil that he may not do them any injury, for the good -

say they - can never do aught but good so we need not to pray

to him on this account.

"The only proof, or rather guess, that they are the remains

of the tribes of Israel is that they have sacrifices, and

that after childbirth their women hold themselves apart for

some weeks. . .

"They have no letters.

"They know nothing about their origin. All are equally wise;

if one is wiser and begins to tell anything beforehand which

afterwards comes to pass, they hold him as a wizard and he

loses his life.

"They have kings, and when the king dies, his son comes into

his place if he is suitable; otherwise another is taken.

"They have only one wife at a time, but if any disagreement

comes between wife and husband, they are separated. If the

wife dies, he does not take another from that family.

"They never fight among themselves, i.e., those who are in

the same kingdom; they have nothing to fight about; they have

no separate property; the woods are their council chamber.

They are very faithful to their word.

"They knew nothing of drunkenness until the Christians began

to bring wine and spirits to the markets; by this they

learned the taste of it and now have a desire for it.

"Their wives give birth without any suffering . . . .

"The heathen reckon time only by the moon.

"They have no idols; do not worship the sun and the moon. All

the borders of their empire are natural - rivers or great


"Wild beasts there, are not so dangerous as in Europe; they

seldom do any injury to men.

"It is not hard to plant the Christian religion with them,

for they do not have anything prior; the only thing that

strikes them is that they fear that by it they will lose

their freedom, and that the priests will lay taxes on them

. . .



They choose an animal for their spirit or genius, and this

they never shoot, but it is revered above all others."       

(Anec. Benz. p. 44)

We may here add that on his arrival home, Pastor Bjorck

preached in the Skara Cathedral on the subject of his

experiences. Among other things, he said: "I have been off

among people of all kinds of erroneous doctrine, and among

wild heathen, but in all the seventeen years I was there, I

never heard so much swearing as I heard in two hours at

Marstrand. . . and yet they boast of their evangelical

doctrine and Christian faith. God save us from the dreadful

and prevailing stortro, I mean the hateful otro."* These

words would find sympathy with the good Bishop, and doubtless

they formed at times the subject of talk between him and his

son in connection with brother Jesper's work. (Amer. Illum.

p. 96)

       * Stortro = enormous faith; otro = lack of faith.

But Swedenborg's main business in Upsala was to discuss the actual carrying out of that plan of which he had thought more than once while on his foreign journey, the plan namely, of taking Polhammar's inventions in hand, making drawings of them and writing descriptions, and publishing them as the beginning of a scientific society. Of course, his own inventions were also to be included; and he hoped to get financial support from one or other of the State Colleges so soon as he made known the great and practical value of the inventions described. (OQ. 1:227, 229 = LM. pp. 58, 61)

In Upsala he would find the material for his work in that rich collection of Polhem's papers which had been sent from time to time to the Collegium Curiosorum, and which had been preserved by Benzelius.

Both in his brother's house and in the Library, he must more than once have met with the members of this College, and discussed mechanics, physics, astronomy, etc., and particularly Polhem's and Swedenborg's inventions and the establishment of a learned society with help received from the State.*

* The Collegium Curiosorum continued its meetings until 1719 (Brefwaxling XXIII).

It was during this visit in Upsala that Swedenborg's ideas took definite shape in the decision to publish the Daedalus Hyperboreus (Northern Daedalus), and it was here, on October 23rd, 1715, that he wrote the Preface which was to introduce the first number of this the first learned periodical to be produced in Sweden.

The Daedalus Hyperboreus constitutes in effect the Transactions of the Collegium Curiosorum, and in its pages were printed "Specimens of the conferences and correspondences of the Society." Indeed, this is implied in one of the articles in the first number of the journal, an article commencing: "Among the letters the aforesaid Association has been pleased to send to those who were of the Society already mentioned is a letter to the learned Librarian," etc. It is also recognized by Polhem who, when he



heard of Swedenborg's intention, wrote (Dec. 7, 1715) and congratulated him on his design to print under his own editorship and at his own cost, "the curious and useful things in Physico-mathematics and mechanics which the Collegium Curiosorum in Upsala and he himself have assembled; for which," he adds, "mein Herr deserves much thanks and renown, if not now while the country's cloudy day endures, yet probably, by men in future when our Righteous God vouchsafes that His Sun of grace shall again rise." Polhem had expressed the wish to have the transactions published at the very beginning of the Society, and even suggested that two pages be published weekly as a supplement to the Stockholm weekly newspaper. But this involved cost without the slightest prospect of profit. And though Polhem might have afforded it, this was not in his character. And so the Society waited five years until Swedenborg returned and decided to do the work at his own cost. (Brefwaxl. XXII-III; OQ. 1:235 = LM. p. 73; Bring, Pol. p. 73)

Many must have been the discussions as to whether to print the journal in Latin or in Swedish; but Swedenborg's view prevailed, the view, namely, that it was desirable to teach the people, and also necessary, if a real learning was to be established in Sweden. This was his consistent policy for the first few years of his literary life, until in 1720, despairing of success in the midst of the universal frivolity, he turned to the learned and Latin world, and thenceforth addressed his learned works to his world alone.

The first number of the Daedalus Hyperboreus appeared in Stockholm and Upsala in January 1716, but there can be little doubt that it was planned and written at least in large part during the Autumn visit made by Swedenborg to Upsala.

Of the contents of this first number, we shall speak later. But now is the best time to consider the Preface, containing the first words addressed to the public by Swedenborg the scientist and natural philosopher. It reads:

"That which is now brought forth to the light of day is the

fruit and the firstling, as it were, of the correspondence

which some learned men in Upsala and lovers of the

mathematical sciences have had with our Swedish Archimedes

Herr Assessor Christopher Polhammar. In all times it has been

a lamentable fact that one puts little value on a

praiseworthy thing so long as it is still possessed; but when

it has been lost, then we have missed it.

       "Virtue uninjured we hate;

       But seek it with envy, when gone from our sight.

"In order to prevent this, some learned men in Upsala, as

already stated, have for five years, by letter writing,

compared their thoughts with the aforesaid Herr Polhammar,

and have received his replies wherein are many profound

views, new experiments, inventions, and machines calculated

to throw light both on mechanics in general and also on

physics in general and in particular; on astronomy; yes, and

on economics; wherein, generally, no further investigations

have been made beyond what has been at one time established,

and each and every one deems that to be sufficient which

father and mother did before him.



"Foreigners hold, for the most part, that our cold northern

lands are little given to the mathematical sciences. But they

judge blindly, and have been led so to think because with

them there has been more opportunity and more encouragement

for the cultivation of these sciences, and, in consequence

thereof, they have accomplished more. Especially may one

commend their societies or the meetings of the learned there,

where each and every one is given the freedom to express a

new opinion, to compare it with others, and then, when it is

proved to be well founded, to give it to the public.

"We would encourage ourselves in the hope of the same thing

when the all-radiant God grants to our incomparable Monarch

peace and tranquillity from his many fierce enemies.

Meanwhile, it is proposed to publish something every two or

three months, sometimes on Mechanics, such as new hoisting

and pumping machines, clocks, etc.; sometimes on Astronomy,

wherein our northern observations can throw such signal light

on those made in southern lands; sometimes on Economics, such

as house building, the construction of fireplaces and ovens,


"One lives in the confident expectation that this publication

will be regarded and received just as it is offered, with

good will for general service. Farewell.

Upsala, October 23,       1715

              Emanuel Swedberg."

Swedenborg left Upsala on Sunday morning, November 20th, and arrived in Stockholm the next morning. This was his first visit to the capital since his infancy, unless he had gone to Stockholm before visiting Upsala, which is not probable. The city with its sixty thousand inhabitants would have seemed small to him, but perhaps its close confinement to the narrow quarters of a small island and its narrow streets reminded him of the crowded condition of London and Paris. (OQ. 1:232 = LM. p. 69; Bring, Chas. XII, p. 508).

He found the place in great excitement over the prospect of Charles XII's arrival.

Stralsund was now closely besieged. Defeat was a certainty,

and on December 12th it came; but Charles had escaped on the

preceding day, and it was von Ducker and not Charles who

capitulated. But this was later. At the time of which we are

now speaking (November, 1715), news of the narrow straights

in which the King was, had spread to Stockholm, but nothing

certain was known. "Some shut him up in Stralsund (writes

Swedenborg on November 21st) and give him no way of getting

out; some vainly gladden themselves with his homecoming and

expect him here this afternoon - at the court, carriages are

all ready to go to meet him. Yet it is the general opinion

that he has escaped; that after his horse was shot under him,

he ran two thousand paces on foot before he got another


* This refers to the attack on Rugen. This was on the night of Nov. 4, 1715, when the Swedes, numbering 2,000 men, were led by Charles himself against the Prince of Anhalt at the head of twelve thousand men who had just landed in order to capture the island and thus complete the siege of Stralsund. At this battle, the King was dismounted and narrowly escaped death at the hand of a Danish officer, whom he shot. He himself, however, was wounded but succeeded in escaping to Stralsund, being obliged to abandon his soldiers. With the taking of Rugen, the holding of Stralsund became impossible, and its surrender was but a matter of days.               (Voltaire, Charles XII, Boston, pp. 422-24.)




This would redound to his glory, since the Hollander says

that the Swede would be the best soldier in the world if he

knew how to run away." (LM. p. 69)

In the city Swedenborg finds his sister Hedwig and her husband, his new brother-in-law Lars Benzelius who is a Master of Mines and is on the way to becoming an Assessor in the College of Mines. They had been married July 18th the preceding year (1714), and when Swedenborg visited them in November 1715, he found a little nephew, another Ericulus., five months old.

In Stockholm also he found his brother-in-law's younger brother Gustaf who was one year Swedenborg's senior and who was now employed in the Riksarkiv.

Another friend of his schooldays, with whom he again joined in friend ship, was the future Bishop A. O. Rhyzelius who was a second cousin to the Benzelii.

Rhyzelius was the learned Magister who had written the Greek

lines for Swedenborg's Select Sentences. He was now Curate

in the great church in Stockholm, and also Court Preacher,

and now he had been appointed by Charles XII as Chaplain to

the court and to the famous Drabant Regiment.

One of Swedenborg's first steps with a view to carrying out his project of founding a college of mechanical learning was to examine the models of Polhem's inventions which were to be found in Stockholm.

       In 1697, the Regent Government had given Polhem

permission to establish a "mechanical laboratory" which was

to be supported by the Bergscollegium with an annual grant of

1500 d.s.mt; its officials were to be Polhem, Chairman, a

cabinetmaker to work from plans, an apprentice, and a smith

and his apprentice. The plans were elaborate and might have

led to something had it not been for the poverty of the

country. Polhem also was partly responsible for its failure,

for he was more interested in his private manufacturing

projects at Stiernsund and, to a less degree, in his mining

work at Falun where he had the title, without pay, of

Director of Mechanics. He had, therefore, no time to give to

his mechanical laboratory. A man serving as both smith and

carpenter was employed for a time, but he seemed to have been

left pretty much to himself, for Polhem was occupied merely

with theoretical experiments. No further effort was made to

institute investigations into mechanics or to establish a

school. The appropriations were needed by the Government for

other purposes, and when the one employee died in 1706, all

work seems to have stopped. It may be noted however, as a

tribute to Polhem's genius, that his Mechanical Laboratory is

"undoubtedly the first effort to establish in Sweden an

institution for technico-mechanical instruction." (Bring,

Polhem, pp. 31, 24, 35)

       Charles XII first heard of Polhem's many gifts after he

had retreated to Bender. Early in 1712, Stenbock, for whom

Polhem had invented some military improvements, wrote highly

of him to the Government. Shortly before October, 1711, the

Collegium Curiosorum of Upsala, at Polhem's request, had sent

to the King in Bender a letter of recommendation for Polhem,

complaining that owing to poverty, a man of a rare genius

never before known in our land, must confine himself mostly

to more theory. At the same



time, Polhem himself wrote, giving a list of his inventions.

Charles was at once greatly interested, and orders were given

to support Polhem, to see that he was paid, and to grant

privileges to his works at Stiernsund - for Charles himself

had mathematical and mechanical genius. When Charles came to

Stralsund, Polhem had orders to go there as soon as possible.

This was not done. Despite the King's urgency, however,

Polhem's Mechanical Laboratory was not supported. The models

that had been constructed were neglected and part of them

were taken to Falun; in fact, the laboratory itself seemed to

have moved to Stiernsund, and nothing further is heard of it.

But the King still supported experiments conducted at

Stiernsund. (Ibid. pp. 41-3, 45, 48-9, 32; OQ. 1:238

= LM. p. 78)

       Many of the models had been stored in the Bergscollegium

on Mynt Torget, and lay there neglected and covered with

dust. It was these that Swedenborg designed to study, with a

view to describing them (and possibly of improving upon

them), and bringing them to public notice in a work which

should usher in the establishment of a college of technical

and scientific learning in Sweden. Thus, to Swedenborg also,

as well as to Polhem, must be ascribed the foresight which

ultimately led to technical education.*

       * A collection of models, called "Polhem's Mechanical Alphabet", is preserved at Falun in the Stora Kopparberg's Museum. (HLO)

Concerning his examination, he writes in a letter to Benzelius, after he had been in Stockholm only five or six weeks:

"The models in the Bergscollegium are perishing from time to time.

In six or ten years they will be useful only for the fire, unless

I wish to avert their fate by means of a little brass

and a little ink and paper," (LM. p. 75)

Doubtless, he is here referring not to any actual repairing of the machines - it was far from his intention to spend his time in such pottering and useless work - what he meant was that he would give them new life if by money and the ink and paper of the press he could introduce them to the world and so demonstrate their usefulness - and this in the projected Daedalus Hyperboreus.

It is the bringing out of the Daedalus Hyperboreus that occupies his time and attention. While he had obtained the material for the first number from the Collegium Curiosorum at Upsala whither Polhem had sent papers from time to time; yet there was much to be done; calculations were to be made, descriptions to be rewritten, to say nothing of the writing up of Swedenborg's own inventions.

"Literary occupations," Swedenborg writes, "are my amusement

every day. It is impatience alone that causes me some

anxiety, and anxiety somewhat disturbs my affairs here."

(OQ. 1:233= LM. p. 741)

The first article for the opening number of the Daedalus Hyperboreus "On the Ear Trumpet" - probably written at Upsala - had been sent by Benzelius to Polhem together with the Preface, and on December 7th, Polhem, in his first letter to Swedenborg, of whom of course he had known by repute, says that, from the description of the ear trumpet, he judges Swedenborg to be a "quick mathematician who will be of fine service in the carrying out of these and similar undertakings." He also likes the Preface, but suggests



less praise of himself, because "for a native brought up at home, no such great renown can be expected, especially in his own time." He refers to Swedenborg's designation of him as the "Swedish Archimedes." (OQ. 1:233, 236, 235 = LM. pp. 74, 73)

Polhem writes in a similar tone to Benzelius, who appears to have written him as to the prospects of Swedenborg finding some employment:

"I note that young Herr Swedberg," he says, "is a quick

mathematician and excellently fitted for the mechanical

sciences, so that if he continues therein in the way which he

has shown in this commencement, he will in time be able to be

of great service to the King and his Fatherland, either in

this or in some other matter."

He goes on to say that when he had been at Carlscrona last summer, where he had been waiting to obey the King's summons to Stralsund, he had noticed many cases where mechanics could save a hundred thousand dalars every year. Moreover, he adds, manufacturing now offers great opportunities in Sweden if only peace comes and the King returns safely. He then continues:

"If I, in any way, can be of service to Herr Swedberg, I

would do this so much the more since it may contribute to the

service and honor of the Fatherland, it being a matter of

rejoicing that there are young and undisturbed* minds which

do not allow the present conjuncture of circumstances so far

to prevail, that they let themselves be hindered from fine

aspirations which are the same time useful," He adds that

while he has not thoroughly studied Swedberg's article on the

ear trumpet, yet he has no doubt of its correctness in all

its details. "It would be my greatest pleasure and delight,"

he continues, "if he would be so good as to compare his

things with mine, orally, and he is always welcome at my

house whenever he pleases."

       * That is, undisturbed by the critical state of the country.

He then asks Benzelius to send back such of his papers as Swedenborg wishes to bring out, that he might look them over. (OQ. 1:237)

A like invitation to visit him at Stiernsund is politely intimated by Polhem when writing to Swedenborg on December 19th, in answer to the latter's request for a copperplate and some particulars as to one of his inventions. Polhem finds it would take too long to give the particulars in a letter,

"but," he adds, "if mein Herr had a desire to devote himself

with diligence to the study of mechanics, I should wish that

my poor accommodations were suitable for him for the purpose

of frequently conferring orally, then I would hope we might

find enjoyment on both sides. . . As soon as mein Herr has

printed what is intended, and wishes to undertake something

else that is new, it would be useful if I could have oral

conference concerning it, and, provided it would not

otherwise be troublesome to mein Herr to travel so long a

distance, I would prize it as a great honor and pleasure if

mein Herr was pleased to visit me at Stiernsund." (OQ.

1:238 = LM. p. 78)

Swedenborg had not only the literary part of his work to consider, but also the engraving of the plates necessary to illustrate the Daedalus Hyperboreus; for without plates, the work would have little value. His own



knowledge of engraving would doubtless be useful, but would not suffice if the machines to be described were Falun or Stiernsund. We can imagine, therefore, his pleasure when his stepbrother Anders Swab, Mining Master at Falun, and his old tutor Doctor Moraeus came from Falun on a visit to Stockholm, and gave him hopes that Geisler the Surveyor of the Falun mines would be willing to make drawings of the machines there. "As he is the cleverest and most delightful painter in Sweden, in this small but intricate mining works," Swedenborg writes, "I flatter myself to obtain thereby some very curious pieces which will serve for ornaments and golden tapestry in this common work," namely, in the Daedalus Hyperboreus which Swedenborg and Benzelius held as a matter of common interest. (OQ. 1:233 = LM. p. 74).

It does not seem that Swedenborg got anything from Geisler; certainly he did not publish any plates by him.

But he wrote to Polhem asking for a copperplate of a machine which was to be described in the Daedalus Hyperboreus. The plate, however, had been lent to a student and could not be got in time for the first number. It is probably the plate printed in the second number - a plate which had been made in Amsterdam in 1694, and it is wholly unlike the other plates in Swedenborg's work, which latter were executed by a Stockholm engraver by the name of Aveln, whose work, however, was not satisfactory. (Daed. Hyper. p. 25; OQ. 1:249 = LM. p. 100)

It would seem that Swedenborg's original intention had been to dedicate the first number of Daedalus Hyperboreus to the King; but he was dissuaded from this by his brother-in-law, perhaps because he had not obtained permission. At any rate, we have the fact that when the four numbers of Daedalus Hyperboreus for 1716 were issued in a separate volume, they appeared in two forms:

1. With a title-page containing a verse beginning Daedalus en auras and following by (1) a Dedication to the King, and (2) an Address to the Reader, dated October 23, 1715.

2. The same title-page, but followed only by the Address to the Reader, word for word the same though with some variation in spelling, but dated December 23, 1715.

Thus it would appear that Swedenborg had already written (and perhaps printed) the Dedication to the King, the Address to the Reader of October 23, 1715, and the opening pages of the journal itself before he left Upsala; but after deciding to give up the Dedication, he had the Address to the Reader set up by the Upsala Publisher's head office in Stockholm, and dated it December 23, 1715. Then he used the already printed Dedication with the Address dated October 23rd, at the end of the year, "if conditions warrant," when the four numbers were issued as a separate volume.*               (OQ. 1:252 = LM. 105)

* Besides the two title-pages mentioned in the text, there are also two title-pages for number 1 of the Daedalus Hyperboreus:

1. Containing a verse beginning Saecula vel redeunt and inscribed "Stockholm."

2. The same as the above, but with "Printed in Upsala" instead of Stockholm.



That Swedenborg intended the first number of Daedalus Hyperboreus to be dedicated to the King, who was now in Sweden, would seem to be indicated by the following words which Swedenborg wrote to his brother-in-law early in December:

       "As to the Dedication, I must obey you; since you

foresee something there, I also will make it appear that I

penetrate into the same thing, though I should be able to

flatter myself of a little reward thereby; but as concerns

more advantageous views, obedience to your counsel shall

prevail over all interest."

The literary work thus undertaken by Swedenborg was entirely at his own expense, and the cost or the prospective cost evidently gave him some concern, for by now his finances had become so low that, to use his own words, "a single stiver was precious." (OQ. 246 = LM. p. 94)

       "A single word to my father from you on my behalf," he

writes to Benzelius early in December, "will be more than

twenty-thousand remonstrances from me; without making any

recommendations [i.e., without directly asking the Bishop to

support the projected work] you can inform him of my project,

of my solicitude for studies, so that he will not imagine in

the future that I would waste time and, at the same time, his

money. One word from another will be worth more than a

thousand from myself. He well knows that you have the

kindness to be interested in my behalf, but he knows also

that I myself have a still greater interest for myself, and

it is because of this that he will challenge what comes from

me, more than what comes from you, my dear Brother." (Ibid.


He goes on to refer to some commissions he had been asked to carry out in Stockholm. His sister Anna, differing perhaps from her mother, apparently liked to live in the fashion, and Swedenborg is frequently instructed to buy for her in Stockholm.

       "I will see to the shoes for brother Eric", he writes,

"I wil also see to the petticoat, though the dyers have their

hands full; whole shops are being sent to their black

chambers in order to make all clothing more sombre, and, for

the present, everything that has been red or gay takes on the

color of mourning. It is this that hinders my sister's

petticoat from being dyed black." The reference is to the

funeral of the Queen Dowager. See Henrik Schuck's Fran det

forna Upsala, pp. 114-15, 118, 148-49, 150-51. (OQ. 1:234

= LM. p. 76; see ibid. 263 = 136)

When Swedenborg had arrived in Stockholm on November 21st, he had found the old Queen very ill. She died three days later, at the age of nearly eighty - her last words being a prayer that her grandson Charles XII would return home and save his country by making peace with his enemies.


She was buried January 17, 1716, without pomp or ceremony,

together with Charles XII's oldest sister Hedwig Sophia. A

ceremonious funeral had been planned, but this was

countermanded by Charles XII after his return to Sweden in

the middle of December, on the ground that times were too

hard to pay for ceremonious processions. The funeral,

therefore, was a very simple one, attended only by Archbishop

Steuchius and four members of the Royal Council. (Fryx.

29:126; Anteckn. om. Sv. Quinnor)



For the projected funeral pomp, Swedenborg wrote a poem which he entitled "The Funeral Pomp when the Queen Dowager of Sweden HEDWIG ELEONORA was borne to the grave followed by Crown and Scepter, the Court and the Army." Evidently Swedenborg wrote this funeral hymn before he knew of Charles XII's countermanding order; and it would appear that the writing was among those "literary occupations" which, as he wrote his brother early in December, formed his amusement every day. (OQ. 1:233 = LM. p. 74) The hymn itself has merits both for imagination and for style: (OP. p. 71)

Break thou the harp, O Sappho!

O Muse, snap asunder the strings so gladsome erstwhile!

Comes now unto thee the sad hour when words must be sung

                                          Alone, without chords.

Sit at the tomb thou Glory

So oft spreading praise of the Swedes, the fair Swedes of the north,

To Europe's wide land; sit thee down, and now let thy words

                                          In whispers be heard.

Goddess of Northern Glory!

So great with thy laurels, thy triumph, mourn thou in grief

Thy triumph is now sombre pomp, a chaplet thy crown

                                          The seal of thy woe.

Scepter of Gold! which erstwhile

Smote men with its dread! Why so starlike gleamst thou with gems

When soon beneath earth's darksome sod, entombed thou shalt be

                                          With this the sad urn.

Crown, with bright diamonds gleaming,

Which shone on the robe of thy Queen with rays as of light,

Lie now on the pillow in darkness, still and at rest

                                          With jewels grown pale.

Court of the Swedes! once famed

By deeds of her Sires, once a star in Europa's bright crown.

Walk now in the gloomy procession. humble in state,

                                          Deprived of thy Queen.

Army of Swea's 'Norsemen!

In grief form the rear of the pomp, your arms turned to earth;

Ye also will look to the ground, and will smite in your woe

                                          Your sombre clad breasts.

Land of the Ancient Gothmen!

Once Goddess of War, and the fount of nations of old!

Thou Swea, with hair streaming loose and garments all torn

                                          Mourn now in thy grief!!!

Swedenborg's letter to Benzelius of December, from which we have so often quoted, was written in French - of a kind; Swedenborg, however, seems not to have been aware that his French was not good, for at the end of the letter he writes:



       "Pardon me, my dear Brother, that I write you in French.

The person whom one thinks of, he amuses in the ordinary

course; my thoughts are flowing in this language for the

present." (OQ. 1: 235 = LM. p. 77)

The opening number of Daedalus Hyperboreus was now in print, and in its issue of January 10th, Ordinaire Stockholmiska Post Tidender - a little weekly of 8 or 16 pages. 16mo - contained the following inserted by Swedenborg:

"It is hereby made known that it is intended every other

month to issue by the press at Upsala two or three sheets of

a book called Daedalus Hyperboreus or some new mathematical

investigations and operations made by Assessor Polhammar and

others in Sweden; and for a beginning in this new year 1716,

some ear tubes, a noise-tube, experiments on sound and the

like, have already been made by the aforesaid Herr Assessor;

and likewise two new hoisting machines described and invented

by Emanuel Swedberg. Copies are for sale at the booksellers

in Stockholm for the author's benefit, and may be bought for

less if one agrees to take the whole work."

The title-page of this first number reads: "DAEDALUS HYPERBOREUS or Some New Mathematical and Physical Investigations and Remarks made by Well-born Herr Assessor Palheimer and other ingenious men in Sweden and which now from time to time are submitted for the general advantage." Then follows the verse (in Latin): (OP. p. 80)

       Ages return, and times of old do sport anew

              Or Daedalus in very self relives his time;

       'Twas he of old fled through the midst of foes,

              As this, our Daedalus, flees now our foe,

The first article describes a simple but ingenious ear

trumpet invented by Polhem and presented by him to the Queen

Dowager, "now blessed with God." It "can be purchased of the

inventor" at a price according to the material used.

The second article, on the nature of sound, is taken from a

letter sent by Polhem to Eric Benzelius of the Collegium

Curiosorum. It consists of an investigation into the nature

of sound waves by a study of waves in water when stirred; of

the tremulation in a long hanging rope when either end is

struck; and in empty balls in contact with each other. Such

phenomena are presented as the time-distance between the

seeing of a shot fired, and the hearing of it; the difficulty

of making oneself heard from above as compared with from

below which is illustrated by the sound of kettle drums or

bells heard from a height or from a depth; the fact that

water running in a long pipe will always come out with a

spiral turn to the right; and that in Lapland, thunder is

heard more plainly in the valleys than on the mountain tops.

From these phenomena, all of which are explained, some

interesting deductions are made as to the nature of sound and

hearing as being pendent on tremulations.

This is followed by an account of "experiments in connection

with sound that remain to be made in our own country. "It is

our intention,"



says the writer, evidently Swedenborg himself, "hereafter

always to present something which will excite the industry

and desire of others; and this in order to show that our land

has more manifold advantages for making experiments than any

other; which later could serve for throwing light on our

machines, and also would make some noteworthy contributions,

useful both for other societies and for our own land."

       The suggested experiments are for the finding of the

speed of sound waves; for the study of echoes - here

reference is made to St. Paul's whispering gallery and of the

directions and reverberations of sound in mines and in

different states of wind and weather.

It is in connection with this article that Swedenborg wrote his "Experiment on Echo" which is now preserved in Linkoping. (Phot. 1:205-6)

       The article on the noise-tube describes an invention by

an unknown man which, if it works out practically as

indicated by the theory, "its usefulness would certainly

correspond to its price." It is a large instrument (some 75

feet x 30) built something in the shape of a megaphone. If

put on the top of a high hill, and if a cannon be then

sounded near its small opening, the sound will be heard

thirteen miles away - instead of less than two. "By this

plan," continues Swedenborg, with an eye to the times, "the

appearance could be produced of a battle being close at

hand." The sounds of rifles would be thought to be that of

cannons. Still greater would be the noise if two noise-tubes

were combined, but then "it would be well to put wax in one's

own ears."

       Swedenborg adds some geometrical and arithmetical notes

on the construction of this noise-tube, and in the course of

this, he gives a new method for finding the harmonic

proportions in an equal-sided hyperbole. (Enestrom, pp. 6-7)

The above articles describe Polhem's inventions, but the descriptions themselves and the mathematical calculations that accompany them were all the work of Swedenborg. (Bring, Polhem, pp. 77, 78)

       The rest of this number of the Daedalus is filled by a

description of two hoisting machines invented by Swedenborg

himself. One is an improvement of one of Polhem's, enabling

the hoisting rope to go up and down at will. Swedenborg had a

small model made of this machine (see Daedalus Hyperboreus).

       The whole issue fills twenty-three pages - the last page

being blank - and includes three plates.

During this stay in Stockholm, Swedenborg came across and purchased a book dealing with a subject to which he was particularly devoted, namely, a Latin book entitled A Method of finding out the Longitude by Land or Sea, with Demonstrations and plates showing the instruments. London 17157, by Dorothea Alimari, a professor of mathematics in Venice. Swedenborg gives the work short shrift, characterizing it as "mere speculation and nothing more." (OQ. 1:254 = LM. p.109)



From Stockholm, Swedenborg went to Stiernsund, though probably, he first spent Christmas at Brunsbo where doubtless he experienced the "amusements" which later he told Benzelius had "distracted his thoughts." At Stiernsund he met, for the first time, Christopher Polhem and his wife and family. The children - four daughters and one son - were:

Maria, aged 17;

Gabriel, nearly 16, the future helper with the Canal Works;

Emerentia, 12-1/2;

Hedwig, 10-1/2

Elisabeth, 8. (OQ. 1:239, 245 = LM. pp. 85, D92; Attar-Taflor)

       The works at Stiernsund were established in 1700 by

Polhem in partnership with the wealthy Count Gabriel

Stiernkrona (after whom the place was named); see above p.

35. (Bring, Pol. pp. 103,105)

In 1712, Charles XII had given Polhem freedom from taxes for

all his raw materials and products for ten years. His workmen

also were free of all personal taxes. Stiernsund was,

therefore, in a very prosperous condition at this time, and

orders could not be filled. (Ibid. p. 106)

Swedenborg made but a short stay here, but it was sufficiently long for him to note the many remarkable machines invented by Polhem and in actual use. (OQ. 1:239 = LM. p. 85)

Polhem refers to this visit in a letter which he wrote to Benzelius some weeks later, it being to the latter that he was indebted for his coming into contact with Swedenborg:

       "Some time ago," he says, "Herr Swedberg was here

staying with me, when I became acquainted with his quickness

and good qualities, and therefore I am so much the more

willing to leave him my small scientific pieces to bring them

out; for by his previous learning and knowledge in

mathematical matters, he is prepared for this, and capable."

(OQ. 1:289; 1:243 = LM. p. 88)

       Polhem was not only a mechanical genius, he was also a

man of much deep thought, and had he been more highly

educated, he might have made his name even in Philosophy. He

has left behind him an immense number of essays, reflections,

dialogues, etc., on a great variety of subjects, but all

showing reflection and sometimes original thought; in which

productions we find more than one idea which, if Swedenborg

talked with Polhem on the matter, must have suggested or

confirmed ideas which Swedenborg himself later brought out in

his printed works.

       Thus, Polhem explained sympathy and antipathy by the

supposition that thought has a materia and thus can pass

through walls, etc., as easily as sound and vision. To this

materia he ascribed dreams. Confer Tremulation p. 13.       

(Bring, Polhem, p. 67)

       On the subject of creation, while he accepted the Mosaic

account, he yet hold that it must be taken as being

figurative. Creation was from nothing only in the sense that

air is nothing; but actually creation was from an infinite

materia "which God made into a finite." He attributed gravity

to pressure. (Ibid. p. 62, 68)

       His genius for mechanics led him to think that all

nature is connected together like the links in a chain of

which none can bear the other if any are missing.



Certainly, Swedenborg on this first meeting with the great Polhem, whom he had admired so often at a distance, and whom he described as the Swedish Archimedes, must have listened to him eagerly. Swedenborg was then nearly twenty-eight years old, while Polhem was fifty-four and in the very prime of his life and powers.

Evidence of Swedenborg's interest - and also, incidentally, of his prospects shortly to be realized of comfortable financial circumstances - is afforded us in the fact that during this visit he promised to rewrite and publish a little work by Polhem on "Wisdom's second foundation for the Honor of Youth, the Use of Manhood, the Delight of Old Age." This work was designed to be a course of 57 graduated lessons in arithmetic, geometry and algebra, and impressed Swedenborg so greatly that, as stated, he undertook to publish it. Writing to Benzelius from Brunsbo on February 14th, he describes it as "commencing in the easiest manner and going on gradually to more difficult matters." A month later, March 4th, when he sends the copy to Benzelius to be given to the printer, he writes:

       "I send herewith to d: Brother a little work which

Polhammar has commenced and intends to give out from time to

time. It is a mathematical course consisting solely of

geometry, arithmetic and algebra - of which this is the first

and easiest [lesson]. I promised to put it in print, which I

also intend to do, at my own expense, if there is no one

disposed to undertake it in my stead; and since it is so

useful for beginners and others, it should in all probability

win favor. Perhaps the printer would publish it at his own

cost, for I have no desire to act in such a case as silent

partner, or as bookseller or publisher, since I do not see

there is any occasion of bringing into the undertaking

anything for my own recommendation." (OQ. 1:240, 241 =

LM. pp. 87, 89; Bring, Polhem. p. 98)

Polhem himself refers to the same work in a letter of March 6th to Eric Benzelius:

"I gave Herr Swedberg," he writes, "a little beginning or

introduction to a mechanical and mathematical work for the

instruction of growing youth. Herr Swedberg said he would

have it printed; but as there cannot be so much hurry with

it, I should gladly learn what Messieurs the Mathematicians

in Upsala think of it, and what could be improved in it. It

does not matter to me whether my name appears on it or not,

if only it could be so used that youth would get some benefit

from it; and as soon as it is observed that it is in demand,

the work can be increased to become a considerable book, even

though the beginning is so small and simple." (OQ. 1:243)

Benzelius duly saw this first part of the work through the press (12 pages 8vo and one plate with the legend "lemnad af C.P."). It does not appear to have found much favor. At any rate, no other parts have since been printed, and it remained for Swedenborg himself to write the first treatise on algebra ever published in Swedish. (Bring, ibid. p. 257)

After leaving Stiernsund, Swedenborg went to Starbo, where he owned a furnace some fifty miles west by south, to that residence which had belonged to his own mother, and to which he himself was greatly attached, especially when he wished to engage in quiet study. Here he prepares the copy for Number II of the Daedalus Hyperboreus. He wrote to Eric Benzelius promising MS. for D.H. II                                                 (Om Jarnet p. 79; OQ. 1: 296 = LM. p. 224)



From Starbo he goes to Skarviken, a place in Vermland where, according to Swedenborg's work Om Jarnet, there was an iron works; probably a part of Swedenborg's property. He goes there on business, and his business turns out to be most successful:

       "In Skarviken," he writes, "I became richer than

otherwise, from which I hope in time to be able to be of some

great service to my Brother. (OQ. 1:246 = LM. p. 94)

At any rate, he is able to send him a considerable remittance in March, and adds that any balance still due from him "shall be settled with thankfulness." He completes Daed. Hyperboreus II. (Om Jarnet p. 80)

From Skarviken, on February 14, 1716, he sends to Benzelius in Upsala practically the whole of the "copy" for number II of the Daedalus Hyperboreus, or most of it, in the hopes that some one can be found in Upsala who will read the proof. But he leaves space for Prof. Vallerius to insert his observation of the solar eclipse, "which he himself can translate into Swedish and leave it with the printer, but [note the editorial qualification], it is understood he will be brief."* (OQ. 1:239 = LM. p. 86)

* Among Swedenborg's papers is an 8-page autograph entitled: "Johannis Vallerii, Observatio Ecclipseos Solaris, quare Upsaliae contigit totalis A. 1715 d. 22 April; St: v. horis antemeridianis," of which a German translation (abbreviated) appeared in Neue Zeitungen, Nov. 27, 1715, pp. 378-80. Although in Swedenborg's hand, this document is Vallerius's composition. It describes the means by which the eclipse was observed, the last page containing the observation itself as subsequently printed in the Daedalus, save that in the latter it is put in Swedish, while in the MS. it is in Latin. It would appear that Swedenborg had copied it when examining the transactions of the Collegium Curiosorum at Upsala, but finally decided to publish only the actual observation which he asked Vallerius to translate into Swedish. Or perhaps he copied it to send to Dr. Halley; In the Philosophical Trans. of 1715, n. 343 p. 245, the latter had contributed a long account of this eclipse, together with the observation of a considerable number of persons in different parts of England (see also p. 314 where accounts from abroad are published). Vallerius found only one page was available. The observation was made with the telescope and quadrant bought in London by Swedenborg. (E. et A. I:p. 75)

From Skarviken he returns to Brunsbo, where he sets to work preparing for the press the Polhem work - or, at any rate, the first installment of it - which he had promised to print. By March 4th, it is ready, and he sends it off to Upsala by the printer's apprentice Hakan.*

* It was printed as "Wishetens andra Grundwahl til ungdoms prydnad, etc. The second foundation of knowledge for the adornment of youth, the use of manhood, and the delight of old age. Adapted for the young according to their advancing years; divided into daily lessons. The first book containing a little taste of that which will be further treated of in those that follow. Given by C. Polhem (12 pages 8vo and 1 plate)." This was the first work by Polhem that was printed.

It is to this date, or perhaps a little earlier at Starbo, that we must ascribe a series of notes by Swedenborg which he entitled De Causis Rerum. The date is indicated by the opening paragraph to a ball moving in water as compared with the motion of the planets. This was the title



of a paper by Polhem, which Swedenborg intended for Daedalus II; but while this number was bring printed, Polhem wrote to Benzelius and withdrew it. (Sc. and Phil. Tr. I:1 p. 3)

The writing of this paper so soon after Swedenborg had first met Polhem suggests that the paper reflects the latter's ideas which Swedenborg notes together with some reflections of his own. This perhaps has a bearing on the way round particles are spoken of in no. 2. (See LM. p. 89)

But all the time he is eager for something that will give him a definite position and employment. Thus far, he has been merely spending money, not earning it, and the Daedalus Hyperboreus had little chance of affording profit. He is especially eager to bring this journal to the notice of Charles XII.

On February 14th, he writes to Benzelius, when sending the copy for No.II from Skarviken:

"I should wish from the heart that this [the second number]

were ready, the sooner the better - so that I could get a

couple of copies of it to Ystad while I were there and could

recommend it, together with the previous number."        (OQ.

1:240 = LM. p. 87)

But all the time his thought is engaged on the establishing of a learned society devoted to mechanics and mathematics; and this he hopes might be done in some way at Upsala by the establishment of a professorship in mechanics, to which, of course, he hoped to be appointed. In the letter of February from which we have already quoted, he speaks briefly of the matter and adds:

"If I see no other way out, this proposition will probably be

given in the proper quarter" - meaning the King, whom he

hopes to see on his projected visit to Ystad. (Ibid.)

The journey to Ystad is, however, postponed; for Swedenborg learns that Charles XII is prolonging his stay at the northern frontier.

       The King had left Ystad in February 1716, to make

certain arrangements at Karlstad, and afterwards to take his

place at the head of his army in a sudden attack on Norway.*

The attack failed, but Charles XII never returned to Ystad,

and in September he established his capital at Lund. (In this

journey he was accompanied by Estenberg.) (Nordberg, 2:560,

588-89, 585, 602; Bring, Chas. XII, p. 6l6s.)

       * In order to keep the planned attack secret, no boats were permitted to leave Sweden, and this order was maintained until the end of April (Bring, Chas. XII, p. 424; Anecdota Benz. p. 52).

And so Swedenborg perforce turns his attention once more to a professorship. On March 4th, he writes to Benzelius from Brunsbo:

"Since the King is still at the Northern Frontier, the

journey to Ystad is postponed until I see how things turn

out; perhaps, therefore, I will remain in my resolution to

seek that of which I wrote to my Brother some time ago, to

wit: 1. Since a society in Mathesis would be as necessary and

useful as a philosophical, and



would heal our land more than even the latter would, both in

the establishment of manufacturers and in connection with

mines, navigation, etc., therefore, to such a society could

well be devoted one-seventh part of the sum which is

appropriated to the Academy. (OQ. 1:241 = LM. p. 90)

This would make a sum of 3,000 dal.s.m., which Swedenborg then proposes should be employed as follows: The Professor of Mechanics (presumably himself), 600 d. (about 4,800 Kr. or $1.250); a Secretary, for which office he proposed Eric Benzelius, 300 d. ($625.00); 4 colleges at 200 ($280.00) each, to be taken by Professors Vallerius, Elfvius, Roberg and Bromell; 4 Auscultants at 100 each ($140.00); the balance of 900 dal. ($1,875) to go for instruments, experiments, models, etc. The 3,000 was apparently to be obtained by reducing the Professors' salaries by one-seventh, which the four Professors mentioned above could augment by the Colleges.* (UUH. 2:2:65)

* Professors' salaries were 700 s.m. = L150 (Robinson, p. 65).

Although Swedenborg says that in making this suggestion "there is more of playfulness" than seriousness, yet, he continues, "if it should meet any one's consent, the recommendation of those who are concerned in the matter would then follow." There was evidently more of seriousness in the proposition than at first appears.                            (OQ. 1.242 = LM. p. 91)

It quite shocked Benzelius, however, and he was the more afraid in that he feared it might get to the ears of the Professors themselves and cause much trouble; and therefore he writes Swedenborg to this effect. The latter, answering on March 20th, 1716, writes:

       "Never have I been or will become so forgetful of myself

and of my good standing at Upsala as to wish that Professors

should maintain their own injury through me; but by a

desperate and execrable proposition of this kind, I thought

to force my Brother's prudence and imagination to give out a

better one. If I framed it in raillery, I can well change it

by speaking the truth; especially as it has gone no further,

since I well concealed it in my Brother's envelope and under

my seal, so that no one is likely to have been able to get a

peep at it. Yet, I should wish that some plan could be given

for the establishment of a society." (OQ. 1:245 = LM. p.


He then makes a new proposition, namely, to drop one each of the professorships in theology and medicine, and to abolish two professorships in the Philosophical Faculty by combining them with other professorships. This, however, would take time, and meanwhile he awaits a proposal from his brother-in-law.

While thus waiting at Brunsbo, he occupies his time in preparing copy for No. III of the Daedalus. He also proposes to engage in the study of the art of perspective, and for this purpose asks Benzelius to send him the Camera Obscura he had left in Upsala. Meanwhile, the proofs of No. II are sent to him for correction, together with Polhem's suggestions and corrections. And this, together with some other work, of which we shall speak later, served fully to occupy his time, to say nothing of the fact that in March he had "a touch of ague," i.e. intermittent fever. (OQ.1:242, 244-45, 246 = LM. pp. 91,93-4)

The second part of Daedalus Hyperboreus appeared in April, and was announced in the Ordinaire Stockholmiska Post-Tidender for April 24, 1716, in a notice written by Swedenborg, as containing:

       "A Description of Assessor Palhammar's Blanckstot

machine, with a copperplate; and a handy method of reckoning

interest on



interest, to which is added the changing of Carolins, after

their rise, into whatever other kind of money is needed.

There are also other curious experiments and investigations

written up by Emanuel Swedberg; and it is for sale by the

booksellers M. Lang and Ruger in Stockholm and Upsala."

(OQ. 1:247, 250 = LM. pp. 95, 1O2; ACSD 98A)

The title-page of this second number in shortened and reads:

"II Daedalus Hyperboreus or Mathematical and Physical

Investigations and Remarks for the month of April, 1716,

described by Emanuel Swedberg, Upsala, 1716."

It will be noted that Swedenborg's name now appears openly on the title-page, as the author of all the articles and not merely of one or two.

The Introduction to the first article is characteristic both of Swedenborg and of the current thought in the country:

       "Since in Sweden, mines are her chief riches and, as it

were, her treasure chamber, which stands open for access both

in war times and in peace; for they never fail, even when all

other means fail and are taken from us; therefore, it is

incumbent on each and every one of us to give his thoughts to

them that they may be developed and may ever attain to

greater and greater wealth and improvement. Now, since these

treasures lie deep underground and concealed in the hardest

rock, therefore it requires the help of many persons, and

especially of mechanics, to bring them forth with ever less

and less time and trouble, and in greater abundance and, in

consequence, that we may enjoy them to our greater advantage

and profit as time goes on. Now since our Swedish Archimedes,

Christopher Palhammar has shown his skill and ingenuity in

such matters, as an example we will commence by presenting

his first device for a hoisting machine at Blanckstotten in

Falun; and later, as occasion offers, others of his machines

which are in use here and there in Sweden, in order thereby

to give suggestions for many similar inventions."

The machine here described was invented by Polhem in 1690,

when he exhibited a model of it at the royal Castle before

Charles XI, who was so impressed with its value that he

provided Polhem with money for a foreign journey. After his

return, this machine, probably improved, was actually tried

in competition with the old method of hoisting by leather

ropes, and despite the opposition of the mining master and

the men, who feared that they would be deprived of work, it

won a decided victory. Polhem had a copperplate of it made in

Amsterdam, and it was this plate that Swedenborg borrowed to

insert in his Daedalus Hyperboreus - the only plate of

foreign workmanship in that journal. He had arranged, through

"Brother Gustaf," to have this plate printed in Stockholm.

(Bring, Pol. pp. 16, 24-5, cf. 22; OQ.1:240 = LM. p.


With regard to the second article, in the letter from Skarviken of February 14th, which accompanied the "copy" for No. II, Swedenborg writes:

       "I have also inserted Doctor Roberg's experiment or

investigation on saltmaking which I have completely altered

so that the trial can now better be made. . . If the Herr

Doctor wishes his name to appear, when it is so much altered,

it is left open to be inserted." (OQ. 1:239 = LM. p. 85)



Professor Roberg evidently did desire that his name, or at any rate his initial should appear.

This paper, like Polhem's, was probably also among the transactions of the Collegium Curiosorum which Swedenborg had examined with a view to publishing. The subject was one of almost overwhelming importance to Sweden where, owing to the war, the importation of foreign salt had been so restricted that salt was obtainable only at prices prohibitive to the common people. The result was much sickness from the eating of unsalted meat in bad condition. It was doubtless this great need of salt that led to the writing and insertion of Roberg's article - as completely rewritten by Swedenborg - which accounts for the closing words of the article: "This, by request, at the present time." (Bring, Polhem. pp. 53, 511)

This great need of salt is referred to by Swedenborg in the article itself, which points out that water could be made more salty, and so more suitable for saltmaking, by freezing it several times and removing the ice each time.

"This experiment," Swedenborg continues, "or experience of

the truth, is in truth worth reflecting on, especially for

the people of Sweden, it being one among the calamities

resulting from the physical deficiencies of this land in

lacking salt . . . that its enemies can refuse it whenever it

will and so can overcome it by this means."

The article points out that to make salt by boiling "our sea water which is so weak, will be too costly, since nowadays all possible saving of wood has become necessary in Swedish economy." The writer therefore advocates experiments on making brine richer by repeated freezings, as already mentioned.

Swedenborg himself had intended to institute some of these experiments at the time he was writing up the article at Starbo; his intention having been to melt salt in water and then to weigh and otherwise test it before and after freezing. But evidently it was too warm at the time, for he writes that "the weather would not cooperate with me." (OQ. 1.239 = LM. p. 85)

In the third article in Daedalus Hyperboreus, he presents some "Experiments which can be instituted in winter time by means of our Swedish cold.

"The suggested experiments are: 1. As to the depth water

freezes in our northern cold; to be found by a tube, 20 ells

long and filled with water, to be vertically exposed to the

coldest weather. It would thus be found whether water freezes

at a greater depth than 17 ells, namely, as high as the

pressure of air pumps.

2. An to the manner of freezing when the pipe is open above,

when it is clothed with a wooden stopper, and when it is

closed by soldering.

3. As to the thickness of the ice; whether evenly thick; and

the differences, if the water be deep or shallow.

4. In very cold weather, the ice cracks and then sinks, as

shown by ice near shore being higher than that farther out;

it is proposed, therefore, to measure the extent of the

sinking or rising as compared with the rise and fall of the

thermometer. Thus data



might be obtained as to the pressure of fresh water."

In the Spring of 1717, when he formulates his new Theory of the Earth, Swedenborg makes use of this phenomenon to explain the cause of the Flood.       (ACSD 138 S.8)

       "These and other experiments," Swedenborg adds, "could

be carried on and actually made better in Sweden than in any

other place in the world; and should any one have the

curiosity to make trial in this matter, and afterwards

communicate the result, it would contribute both to his own

honor and to the use and enjoyment of others."

Of the next two articles, Swedenborg wrote to Benzelius, when sending him the copy, that he had left them "without name or sponsor; yet it is open to insert them." Benzelius, who was acting as the Managing Editor of this number of the Daedalus Hyperboreus, decided to insert both names. (OQ. 1:239 = LM. p.86)

       Polhem's article explains how to calculate compound

interest by means of a graded angle. The explanation is not

clear, but the promise is made to show in a future number the

construction of an instrument by which the calculation can be

made in a moment. The triangle in question is shown in a wood

engraving, made in Upsala, perhaps by Hakan the apprentice to

the Skara printer Kjellberg, who went to Upsala to seek his

fortune and by whom Swedenborg sent to Benzelius the copy for

Polhem's little work on Algebra. Hakan, Swedenborg afterwards

found, could make wood engravings, and, writes Swedenborg,

"that would be needed." (OQ. 1:240-41, 246 = LM.

pp. 89-90, 94; Klemming, Boktryck p. 130)

Swedenborg's original contribution consists of extremely ingenious shortcut methods of changing one coinage into another - a very useful and necessary device in view of the different and complicated values of the different coinages at that time.

The article had considerable practical value, and this was fully appreciated by Swedenborg; indeed, he seems to have a similar fear as to its reprint for private profit, as Benzelius had with regard to the plates. Thus, about April 12th - probably a week or two before Daedalus was on public sale - he writes to Benzelius:

"In the Gazette there was something concerning a new method

of reckoning from Carolin dalers into dalers, etc.; I hope

that Werner in Stockholm has not copied off my article and

published it. It would probably sell for half a daler kop."

(OQ. 1:250 = LM. p.102)

The number closes with a record of the solar eclipse observed in Upsala, April 22, 1715, by Professor Joh. Vallerius. Among Swedenborg's Linkoping MSS. is a copy of this table, preceded by much writing in Swedenborg's hand. The table with some introductory matter was published in Neue Zeitungen for November 27, 1715, pp. 376-80. The MS. was printed word for word in Acta Eruditorum, 1716, p. l4.

This number of the Daedalus, which was printed in an edition

of 545 copies, contains only 16 pages and 2 plates, as

compared with the 23 pages and 3 plates of the more ambitious

no. I. (OQ. 1:240 = LM. p. 87)



Swedenborg is evidently disappointed in it, for when sending the copy to Benzelius, he writes:

"At another time I hope to insert something more useful from

among the things which I collected during the short time I

was in Stiernsund." (OQ. 1:239. LM. p. 86)

Part II of the Daedalus was printed by April 1st, and a copy was at once sent by Benzelius to Swedenborg at Brunsbo. But this was without the plates which were added later before the work was put on public sale. Swedenborg received a parcel of copies in June, but these also were without the plates, which were sent separately. Meanwhile, Benzelius suggests that in future the price of the journal be printed on the first page, because the bookseller in Upsala raises his prices so high so that no copies are sold. This suggestion was never followed up. (OQ. 1:247 = LM. p. 103)

There was also trouble, or at any rate prospective trouble, with the printer of the plates, lest he print an extra number to sell on his own behalf:

"When the woodcut is printed off tomorrow," writes

Benzelius,". . . I shall be on hand so that the printers

shall not have any profit if they put aside some copies on

their own account." (OQ. 1:248)

A little later, when writing to Benzelius as to the contents of the third number of the Daedalus, he writes:

"I hope it will give more enjoyment than the former number,

since I have had more time and peace, the better to work it

out." (OQ. 1:249 = LM. p. 100)

When sending his original copy, Swedenborg had planned for a bigger number, but Polhem had withdrawn one of his articles for further study.* It appears that Swedenborg had not submitted this article to him before sending it to the printer, for in a letter in which Benzelius announces that No. II is out, he explains that Polhem has withdrawn his article on the swinging of a ball under water; he continues:

* The article on the motion of a ball in water.

"Polhem requests that whenever anything of his reasonings are

brought out, he may first be informed so that nothing may

come out which is not thorough and well matured."

Swedenborg, in return, expresses pleasure that the article is withdrawn, "for" he adds, "I was altogether too hasty with the whole of the last number." (OQ. 1:250 = LM. p. 101)

In a letter of April 2, 1716, wherein Swedenborg is informed that Daedalus II is now in print, Benzelius gives some welcome news:

       "As to the Observatory," he writes, "it has so far advanced that the Governor [Ribbing] has promised to recommend to his Majesty that the best round tower at the castle shall be repaired for it. There are enough bricks to take from the ruins. Beams and other woodwork can be got from the city authorities. Means for repairs, I have come across here in the earth, to wit, the long iron pipes which served for the water supply from the mill to the castle, and which now lie and go to ruin. There are also



some fine metal pipes which are worth considerable and could

be used for this." (OQ. 1: 247, 248)

These iron pipes were laid in. 1662 by Olof Rudbeck, and

mainly at his own expense. The water was pumped by a wind

mill from St. Eriks Spring to the castle and thence to the

University and the town. Owing to the cost of repairs, etc.,

it was not long used. (Glas, p. 38; Alving, pp. 110-11;

UUH. 2:65)

In 1716, Ulric Eleonora was asked to grant the right to sell

these pipes. This was granted, and they or part of them (see

Benzelius Brefwaxling, XXIV) were sold for 8,977 dal.k.m.

(Glas, p. 38)

       All these pipes, he adds, have already been sold.* He

then continues: "Instruments, as many as we have, they shall

get from the Library to begin with, For the rest, and the

annual income, I have thought that it might be drawn from a

monopoly in almanacs to wit, that only one person write

them." (OQ. 1:248)

       * This sale refers only to the "fire metal pipes," for on Feb. 5, 1720, the Upsala Lit. Soc. moved to get permission to take up and sell the iron pipes for the use of an observatory; this request was granted, and the sale brought the Society 8,977 dal.k.m. (Bokwetts Oil., pp. 14, 137-38, 141-42, 145, 147-49, 153; Glas, pp.13-14).

Benzelius then turns to the Mechanical Laboratory. Swedenborg, it should be recalled, had proposed first the reduction of Professor's salaries - which quite shocked Benzelius - and then, the dropping of two or three professorships. Benzelius simply ignores this proposal. He writes:

"As to the salary of the Professor of Mechanics, I know

nothing better than that Herr Palhammar should become

ordinary Assessor of the College of Commerce, and my Brother

become Director in his place, and the laboratory Mechanic be

brought here to Upsala. Thus the Director's rank becomes

equal to a professor's. In my thought, the rest is a more

chimera." (Ibid.)

The prospect of having an observatory delights Swedenborg, and he suggests that when the matter comes more directly before the King,

"it would be well that he then got a model of observatories

in foreign lands, having a large balcony above and perhaps a

small one all around below." (OQ. 1:249 = LM. p.100)

As to the proposition for the Mechanical Laboratory, Swedenborg, while flattering himself at having by his own proposition


"brought out my Brother's imagination and prudence to give me

another that is more plausible," yet makes two objections to


       "1. There is no opening in the Commerce Collegium for any ordinary assessor," and

       "2. The great delicacy of getting Palhammar to resign his present position."

Swedenborg, naturally, could take no part in this, but, he adds:

"if in any way his (Polhem's] approval could be got, I would

then spare no care and means to obtain it," i.e., appointment

as Director of the Mechanical Laboratory. (OQ. 1:250 =

LM. p.100)



But Benzelius's scheme meets objections from another source, namely, from the Professors who were members of the Collegium Curiosorum. What their objections were, we do not know. They were conveyed to Swedenborg in a letter from Benzelius written at the end of May, but which is now lost. Whatever the objections were, Swedenborg was quite indignant and was led to write the well known passage about mathematicians needing a practical man:

"I am surprised," he writes, "at the Herr Mathematicians,

who have lost all their force and driving power to bring to

actuality so fine a plan as that which my Brother has advised

them concerning the building of an astronomical observatory.

It is fate with mathematicians that they remain mostly in

theory. I have thought it to be a profitable thing if ten

mathematicians had one strong, practical man who could bring

the others to market. This one could thus acquire more renown

and useful works than all the ten." (OQ. 1:252 = LM. p.


       * By the "Herr Mathematicians," both Polhem and Swedenborg seem generally to have meant the mathematical members of the Collegium Curiosorum.

After this no more in heard of the iron and brass pipes, the sale of which was to provide for the observatory. Swedenborg would like to assist in the development of his Brother's plan, but he can do nothing.

Polhem, however, comes out with a new plan which he puts before Swedenborg in a letter dated September, which was addressed to him in Upsala. The plan was that the members of the Society should procure for the Collegium Curiosorum

"a general privilege on all the newer inventions which can be

hit upon by any private person with whom they themselves

could come into agreement in a reasonable way; but what can

be thereby gained as profit, they should devote to public

uses in such a way that a mechanical laboratory is formed in

Polhem suggests, in addition, that when peace comes, the 1,200 daler s.m. already appropriated for such a laboratory in Stockholm* might also be diverted to Upsala. Moreover, he continues,

"that the work might receive better consideration, and be con

served by more persons, the celestial observatory and the

Collegium Curiosorum should be combined." (OQ. 1:261 =

LM. p. 118)

       * The amount originally appropriated was 1,500 dalers, but Polhem is either deducting his own salary of 300 dalers, or the appropriation has been reduced.

       What Polhem has particularly in mind is a threshing

machine which he had recently invented. If the Collegium

Curiosorum could get the privileges referred to, they could

sell or hire out this machine at a profit which not only

would support the mechanical laboratory, the observatory and

the Collegium Curiosorum, but would give the inventor more

than he could ever get within "any certain time." Polhem's

plan was that the Collegium



should have half the profit, the inventor one-third, and the

director one-sixth. He suggests that if the "Mathematices"

agree to this plan, a letter might be addressed to the King.

Characteristic of the thoughts of many Swedes at that time

are his closing words: "If this and other such things could

be made to succeed in our time, I hope that the lack which

our dear Fatherland now has in reputation would thereby in

some way be mended; at any rate, the foreigner would note

that we are not discouraged by misfortune; otherwise, he has

known us to be proud in prosperity; from which the foreigner

now takes pains to deride our sad condition here in Sweden."

(OQ. 1: 261 = LM. p. 119)

The copy for the July Daedalus was sent to Benzelius as early as the middle of April, in order to invite criticism prior to printing, and to be sent on to Polhem in Stiernsund. He is anxious also as to the engraving of plates, which hitherto has been done by a Stockholm engraver named Aveln, whose work, however, was not satisfactory.

       "I do not know" writes Swedenborg, "whether Dr. Roberg

can be persuaded to engrave in copper. The air pump is

already engraved as can be seen. Aveln makes very poor

letters and numbers, which occur in great abundance. All the

cost which otherwise is paid to Aveln I will also pay in

Upsala, since, presumably, it will then come out more

neatly." (OQ. 1: 249 = LM. p.100)

Whether Dr. Roberg accepted this offer or not, does not appear, but, judging from appearances, none of the subsequent plates in the Daedalus was by Aveln.

Whatever were Swedenborg's private means, he was at any rate glad to adopt a suggestion made by Benzelius, that it would be cheaper if the title of the Daedalus were printed on the text page. This also was done in future, except for the ambitious No. V. (OQ. l:251 = LM. p. 102)

The same feeling of the necessity for economy made him still more eager that some one else could be found to relieve him of his promise to print Polhem's work, of which he had already paid for the first sixteen pages.

       "Will no one take it on him," he writes in June 1716,

"to provide the money for Palhammar's Wishetens andra

Grundwahl? Perhaps the continuation will be entirely too much

for me. Yet I think that the outcome will probably pay for

the work. If there is no one, I must be a promise-keeper and

do it from my own purse." (OQ. 1:253 = LM. p-107)

The outcome did not pay, for the work and circumstances became such that all thought of continuing it was out of the question.

All this time, Swedenborg is still waiting for the opportunity to wait on the hero King who, unknown to him, is now suffering repulses in the Norwegian War. Swedenborg will not leave Brunsbo, even for a visit to Upsala.

"I intend to remain here," he writes, "till something opens

up for me; for," he adds significantly, "I am nearer for the

forwarding of it in the proper quarter; also I have a

poetical work under print here in Skara." (OQ. 1: 250, 251

= LM. p.102)



Two months later, he is still in the same expectant mood, though. somewhat pessimistic. Referring to the need of his attending to the printing of Daedalus III, he writes:

"I should indeed myself be in Upsala, but one now knows not

what place one is safest in; and then it is my object to

spare all expense on my own account until I get a chance to

seek my luck, when the same resources might make my greatest

fortune if they be used." (OQ. 1:252 = LM. p.106)

       The poetical work above referred to is a second and much enlarged edition of the Ludus Heliconius, which had been published in Greifswalde. It was enlarged by the addition of the poem to Count Cronhjelm, the funeral Ode on Hedwig Eleonora, and a number of small pieces. (Ibid. 250 = 102) This second edition consisted of an exact reprint of the first eighteen pages of the first edition, with new pages printed in Skara, and the remaining contents of the Gryphswalde edition. (OQ. 1:251 = LM. p. 102)

In the Daedalus Hyperboreus, Swedenborg gives us an account of some observations which he made at this time in company with his stepbrother

John Hesselius, and probably with a direct view to the

Daedalus Hyperboreus. Hesselius, who was then the

provincial physician of East Gothland (though without a

medical degree), was one year Swedenborg's senior. He made

his home at Brunsbo where in the evenings he greatly

delighted the pious Bishop by playing godly hymns on his bass


       "Last winter [i.e. Jan. or Feb. 1716]," writes

Swedenborg, in the fall of 1716, "when a light but even snow

was still left on the ice to a depth of four or five inches,

I went out on the said ice in company with Joh. Hesselius,

Provincial Doctor of Westgothland, and with rifle loaded as

usual, and laid down a stick of three to four fingers'

thickness and rested thereon the end of the gun, and aimed

merely at the snow at a distance of 3.1 ells. And when the

gun was fired, we went to see the direction in which the

bullet had gone, and observed that it had bounded in and out

of the snow, making moderate distances between the bounds,

until it had reached to a distance of 332 ells, where we

found it in the snow. We measured between the bounds by

stepping, and noted that from the muzzle of the gun to the

first bound was 11 steps; from this to the second, 33 steps.

From the fifth to the sixth were 40; from the sixth to the

seventh, 32; to the eighth, 25, to the ninth, 19; from the

tenth to the eleventh, 11; to the twelfth, 18. From the

latter to the end, we counted 67 steps. And when the rebounds

went off into small divisions such as ells, feet, etc., there

came some interceding water, yet it was found that, with the

little force it had remaining, it had likewise hopped and

bounded over this. Each depression in the snow was about one

and a half or two fingers' deep, so that the bullet had

slanted up again without touching the ice. Previous to this,

I had tried the same experiment in a deep snow with bird

shot, with the same result." (Tottie 2:270; Daed. H. p. 84)

It was evidently Swedenborg's custom, even in his early years, as it certainly was in his later, to make notes on all his studies and observations. He at once committed to writing the facts with regard to his experiment on a bullet moving in snow, and this paper is preserved in Linkoping; and it is eloquent of the wide diversity of Swedenborg's interest, that on the same



sheet are notes on what Swedenborg has heard from a smith as to the best kind of bellows for furnaces; some astronomical notes, and some jottings on the cubic contents of 12 tuns of charcoal, and on the amount of alloy in the Swedish silver coins. (Phot. 1: 92)

In June 1716, his brother Eliezer, who was one year and seven months his junior, died. Of this brother we know nothing save that he was born September 1, 1689; that he entered Upsala in 1703 at the age of 14; that after the University, he devoted himself to mining work - presumably at Falun;* that he married a widow, Elizabeth Brink, who was five years his senior; and that he died in June 1716, at the age of 26-3/4.** (ACSD 10A, 98)
He had no       children.

Exactly one year after her husband's death, his widow married

Anders Swab, his stepbrother, and after the latter's death,

on June 2. 1731, she married Johan Bergenstierna, one of

Swedenborg's fellow Assessors in the College of Mines.


* His name is not mentioned in the personnel of the Bergscol1egium, and therefore he was not in the service of the Collegium.

** Bishop Jesper Swedberg, in his Autobiography, says that Eliezer died at twenty-five, but this is an error. On August 1, Bishop Swedberg transferred to Eliezer's widow a part of the property in Sweden and Framsbacka which, on October 16th, she sold to John Moraeus. (ACSD 218A)

Swedenborg makes but a passing reference to the death of his brother, which must have been early in June and perhaps at Falun - at any rate, his wife was not at Brunsbo. On June 26th, Swedenborg writes:

"At the end of this week we expect Brother Lars and Sister

Hedwig here, and Herr Brother Eliezer's widow; we think they

are starting today."* (OQ. 1:254 = LM. p. 110)

       * She had been the widow of Brandt of Skinnskatteborg (Hildebrand, I:534).

Meanwhile, his mind is active on ways whereby Sweden can be advanced and enriched. On a pleasure excursion to Vestergyln, he finds some peculiar white clay, and at once he thinks as to its commercial use. He asks Benzelius to inquire from Prof. Bromell or Roberg "concerning the clay of which they make their crockery and tobacco pipes in Holland and England, and how the pipes are afterwards prepared in the sun and oven." He suspects the clay he has found to be of the same kind, in which case "it would be worth many thousand Riksdalers. But silence with regard to this," he adds significantly. (OQ.1: 251 = LM. p. 105)

It is during this excursion that Swedenborg probably made a number of observations which later he used in his little works. Thus he writes:

"In Westergyln are found certain kinds of soil and mud which

may be employed for many uses and purposes. In the parish of

Rhyda, a short distance from the rectory, in a beautiful

grove, there are three springs which flow forth in a row; out

of the first there flows ordinary spring water, out of the

second or middle one a medium mineral water, and out of the

third a mineral water which is still stronger but with a

milder taste. The stones over which these two kinds of water

run, are of a reddish or vivid orange



color, as at other mineral springs; the mud or ochre just

below is also of the same color and might, be removed in

large quantities . . . Underneath there is a sandy bottom of

white and fine sand, quite serviceable for hour-glasses, . .

. I have also examined the stones, on which there is some

glitter of a silver color, as if there had been a silver

deposit." He notes also a peculiar kind of blackish fish in

the marsh which hide in the mud. "The uppermost mud is used

for dyeing the finest black, which is just as permanent and

beautiful as the Parisian, and which has the great advantage

over the other in that linen and clothing may be dyed in cold

water." He then describes the method of dyeing." (Sc. and

Phil. Tr. I:2:67=68)

       * Ryd at the eastern foot of Mount Billingen.

       Elsewhere he notes that: "In the parish of Skarcke, near

the rectory at Hojentorp,* is found a kind of . . . slate,

which perhaps may also be used for making lime. In it are

found a great many small insects, in some of it in such

abundance that the stone has been altogether coagulated by

them." He notes also at Billingen "a mountain spot where are

also found some petrified snails," and he suggests a reason.

Then he notes the abundance of slate on the same mountain,

some of which would be very useful in industry. And by the

help of a stream found there, a mill could be ran for

polishing stones, etc. (Ibid. 1:21, 22, 44)

       * A village at the western foot of Mount Billingen.

       He notes also the geological strata of Mount Billingen,

the pulverized lime in Skofde, etc. (Miss. Obs. pp. 13, 46)

It was at this time that Swedenborg wrote "On Certain Kinds of Soil and Mud," being his observations made at Westerglyn. It is photolithographed (see Phot. 1: 94) and it is translated in Scientific and Philosophical Treatises, Part I, fascicle 2, pp. 67-68.

To excursions such as these must also be ascribed all those geological and other observations in Kinnekulle, Hunneberg and Billingen which Swedenborg afterwards incorporated in his Miscellaneous Observations. (H. of W.; Miss. Obs. pp. 12, 13)

Benzelius had sent him the Camera Obscura for which he had asked in June. He writes that from it he has already learned the drawing of perspective "to my own great pleasure. I have exercised from churches, houses, etc.; were I up at the works in Fhalun or elsewhere, I would draw them as well as any one, by the help of this instrument." (OQ. 1:253 = LM. p. 107)

And then, as one among the minor incidents of his quiet life in Brunsbo, came the birth of his sister Caisa's (Catharine Unge) child, a son, at whose baptism, on June tenth, Swedenborg was a witness or godfather. (Ibid.)

But things were very threatening for Sweden. Charles had failed in his surprise attack on Norway, and it was feared that Denmark would attack Skane; nor was there lack of apprehension with regard to Russia.

"It seems to me," Swedenborg writes in June 1716, "that

Sweden is now laid low, soon to come to her last agony, when

she will probably kick for the last time. Probably many

desire that the



agony may be short and we delivered, yet we have probably

nothing better to expect if the spirit remains in him.*"

(i.e. Charles XII). (OQ. 1:252 = LM. p. 105)

       * Si spiritus Illum maneat.

Before proceeding further, something must be said as to Daedalus III, the publication of which was announced in the Stockholm Tidender for September 4th, as follows:

"It is announced that the third part of the so-called

Daedalus Hyperboreus containing: 1. Assessor Palhammar's

dividing of the steelyard; 2. Emanuel Swedberg's

investigation concerning an air pump, together with a

calculation and measuring of the volume and height of water

and air in such air pumps, and the copperplates belonging

thereto; is now issued from the press and is found for sale

with the booksellers on Nygatan." (OQ. 1:256 = LM. pp.

111-12; ACSD 105)

The number consisted of 24 pages and 2 double plates illustrating the two articles.

       Polhem's article is an eminently practical one. In

making steelyards, the practice had been to take actual

weights of 1, 2, 3, 4, etc., lbs., and mark the beam by

actual tests. Palhammar shows how to do the marking by

geometrical measurements, and also how to mark not only the

Swedish weights but also the English and the Dutch.

       Swedenborg's article on the air pump opens with an

historical introduction as to the invention of that pump by

"Boile" and Guericke, and as to how, both in England and

Holland, it had been much improved, especially by Hawksbee in

England. Unfortunately, their price was in proportion to

their perfection. Swedenborg, therefore, proposes a method of

making a pump which will be equally efficient but far

cheaper. In fact, he proposes two methods, each of which he

minutely describes, after which he adds mathematical and

mechanical calculations as to the amount of air displaced,

ending with some practical illustrations worked out in

arithmetic, "in order to give the matter greater clearness

and intelligibility."

The articles, as we have said, are illustrated by two double plates, but it is a singular fact that both these plates contain figures which not only have no reference to the text but which deal with utterly remote subjects. The first seems to exhibit a view of crystals, and seems as though designed to illustrate an article by Bromell (see OQ. 1:248= LM. p. 98); the second is plainly entitled "a gun machine worked by air," and apparently is the machine which constituted one of Swedenborg's many inventions; but although the plan shows details, it yet is not clear. This plan of the air gun is not found in all copies of Daedalus III, some copies containing only half the plate, the part namely, that gives the plans of the new air pump.



It is probable that the two plates of which we speak were prepared to illustrate the following number of the Daedalus, which was to contain an article by Bromell and one by Swedenborg on his air gun, and that the plates were printed (or issued) by mistake.

As already stated, Charles XII had desired to see Polhem in Stralsund, and Polhem had waited at Karlskrona for that purpose during the summer of 1715.

Immediately after his return to Sweden, in December 1715, Charles XII ordered the hastening of the preparation of war ships at Karlskrona, and even during the Norwegian War, Polhem was ordered to Karlskrona to give preliminary reports or estimates as to certain improvements contemplated at the naval base. (Bring, Chas.XII, p. 623)

Polhem was in Karlskrona from the middle of March on, in 1716, and it was perhaps at this time that he drew up the 12 recommendations for improvements to which Swedenborg subsequently added 2 more.

(OQ. 1:244, 255; Phot. 1:127s)

Polhem was in Brunsbo on September 9th. (Berg, Samlingar, pp. 289-90)

These improvements consisted mainly in the blasting out of a dry dock on the island Lindholm adjoining Karlskrona - the first dry dock in the world which was independent of tides. For this work, an estimate was made of "30,000 dal.s.m.; but for greater surety, one can reckon it as 40,000 to 50,000 dal.s.m." (Bring, Polhem p. 51, Phot. 1:127s.)

An important improvement was also the building of a dam on the stream Lyckeby, from which water power was to be obtained for flour and saw mills, etc., for the fleet.

There were also various improvements in rope making, anchor founding, etc., etc.

Polhem was to have returned to Karlskrona about June 15th, when Swedenborg was to have accompanied him. But he was detained in Stockholm, consulting with the authorities as to the making of copperplates for the new coinage, which had to be recoined with new dyes every three months to prevent forgery.                             (OQ. 1:253 = LM. p. 109; OQ. 1:255)

So far as Swedenborg was concerned, it seemed as though the Karlskrona work would have to wait until winter. He does not appear to have been over disappointed. At any rate, on June 26th, he writes that he now found himself "little disposed" to the journey; "for me," he adds, "it is little likely to come off," and so he sets to work to prepare the material for No. IV of the Daedalus.

It is not difficult to see that Swedenborg's lack of enthusiasm at the prospect of helping Palhammar in Karlskrona was due to the fact that he would go as Polhem's private assistant, whereas his great ambition was to meet the King and receive from the highest quarter that encouragement of his labors whereby he might look forward to the establishment of a learned society and a mechanical laboratory for the promotion of scientific and mechanical knowledge.



There was little to be hoped for from Polhem at this time; and Swedenborg once more settles down to his work on the Daedalus; and after sending the MS. of No. IV to Polhem for his inspection, he commences to prepare No. V. (OQ. 1:256, 257 = LM. pp. 112, 113)

A festal day was held at Brunsbo on August 28th, the sixty-third birthday of Bishop Swedberg. For this occasion, Swedenborg resumes the poetic pen and writes:

"A Sapphic Ode in honor of the Birthday of my dear Parent,

Doct. Jesper Swedberg, the most reverend Bishop of Skara, who

was sixty-three years of age on August 28, 1716, the year of

the great Climacteric.*"

       * According to the ancients, every seven years was an event or climacter in human life.

Doubtless these ten Latin verses were read in the family circle enriched by friends; later, they were printed and published in Skara. After inviting the Muse to celebrate the occasion with lute and cithera, the poem then continues: (OP. pp. 26-27)

Full nine times seven, dear Father, hast thou seen

The heavens return; and times as many hast beheld

That hour which was to thee the dawn of light,

                                                 And so to us.

How pale I grew, when came that year

Which oft is wont to be the span of life

And terminus of age to those we love,

                                                 Old men and fathers.

Gladsome I see and celebrate with song its end.

And gladsome give thee greetings, Father, that thou hast

Survived the fates and overlived the perils

                                                 Of an evil age.

The quatrain concludes:

But though thy youth is now behind       thee,

Yet lively age remains, wherein I pray

Thou yet may see as many August months

                                                 as Grandchildren.

A little diversion came in the first days of September. After the cessation of the Norwegian War, the King had been preparing for its renewal by inspections and consultations at Stromstadt, Uddewalla, Wennersborg,* etc.

* It is a curious and almost inexplicable fact that on April 23rd, 1716, when Charles XII was still in Norway but already on the retreat, Bishop Swedberg wrote him a letter from Vennersborg asking for nobility for his family. There is no record of any answer, and it would hardly be surprising if the King never received the letter, or took no notice of it (ACSD 98; Doc. 3: 1331).

       And one day he suddenly separated from his suite and

undertook a lonely journey to see his sister Ulrica Eleonora

at Wadstena. On Thursday, August 30th, the King passed

through Skara incognito,



and a few days later, the lad who had served as his guide to

Hjo, forty-five miles away on Lake Vetter, came to the

Bishop's house and told his story to an eager and interested

group of listeners. (Bain, p. 294; Bring, Chas. XII)

Swedenborg writes an account of this to his brother-in-law on September 4th, as follows:

       "The lad [who acted as the King's outrider] relates many

amusing questions and answers. Just one only: The King asked

if the King was not expected at Hojentorp. 'Yes,' said the

servant, 'I think so.' 'What should he do there.' 'Of that I

know nothing,' answered the servant, 'but they say he would

go from there to Stockholm.' Smiling, he then said, 'Tush,

to suppose that he is going to Stockholm. They say it is so

far away.'" (OQ. 1:257 = LM. pp. 113-14)

Having now given up the idea of visiting the King or of going to Karlskrona with Polhem, Swedenborg determines to pay a visit to Upsala where the affairs of the Daedalus, so long resting on the shoulders of his brother-in-law, demand his own attention. He leaves Brunsbo a little after the middle of September 1716, and takes his old attic room in Benzelius's hospitable house. Here he met his old friend Erik Alstryn who in October became Assistant Librarian. (OQ. 1:256, 257 = LM. p.114; UUH. 2:2:93)

Here he relieves Benzelius of his work in seeing the Daedalus through the press, and for the first time since No. I, he himself does that work in connection with No. IV which was to close the year.

Like its predecessor, this issue is without separate title-page, nor does it contain any note of its cost. This is the more surprising inasmuch as Benzelius had already told Swedenborg of the extortion of the bookseller. And though very soon Swedenborg himself experiences it, yet he did not print the price on the last two numbers of the Daedalus (V-VI) - perhaps the printer was the cause of this. At any rate, writing in April of the following year and referring to No. IV, of which we are now speaking, he says:

"For Daedalus no. IV, Ruger has asked no less than 20 styfers

[almost 1.8 dal.k.m.] and has refused those who offer 16,

which yet they ought to sell for about 8 [1/2 dal.k.m.].

Brother will please print the price on no. V, if it is not

already struck off. I will see that I trust myself to a wise

man." (OQ. 1:271 = LM. p. l53)

No. IV was not advertised, but it seems to have appeared some time in the Spring of 1717 (see p.126). Unlike the preceding numbers, it is marked as a quarterly, namely, "October, November and December 1716." It is also a larger number, having thirty-five pages and one double plate which illustrates both Polhem's article and one of Swedenborg's.

The contents consist of a single long article by Polhem and two or three by Swedenborg.

       Polhem's article is entitled: "The Resistance of the Air

against falling weights and areas" - a 15-page treatise of a

technical and mathematical nature.

       It is followed by "Suggestions for a Machine to fly in

the air, by N.N." meaning Swedenborg. He begins by referring

to the preceding article on the resistance of the air to




bodies, from which, "and also from the flight of birds," says

Swedenborg, "it would be easy to come to the thought that a

mechanism might be hit upon which could carry and transmit as

through the air, and that we were not to be excluded from the

upper element even though no other wings be given us than

those of the understanding. Those who formerly gave thought

to such a work of Daedalus or Mercury have set before

themselves an impossible principium, and have set it in the

air on a foundation which is contrary to our atmosphere and

impracticable; that is to say, they have emptied great globes

of this air, which should thereby acquire such lightness as

to be able to help up both a machine and an Icarus. But if

one follows living nature, inquiring into the proportion of

the wing which a bird has, in relation to its body, it ought

surely to be possible to invent a similar mechanism which

might afford us the hope of following the birds in the air."

Then follows a brief outline of how such a mechanism should

be constructed; after which Swedenborg continues: ""But such

a machine seems easier to talk about than to put into

practice and drive in the air, in that greater force is

required and less weight than that which is found in the

human body." Swedenborg therefore lays it down as a requisite

before attempting to fly: 1. That there should be a good

wind, for otherwise "one would do better to keep quietly and

humbly to the earth." 2. That the machine should be pushed

from a height, or lifted up apiece by ropes, for "the

greatest trouble would be to force oneself up from the

level." 3. The proportions between the weight of the wings

and their size must be observed.

       Swedenborg regards his suggestion merely as showing the

future possibility of flying machines. What he suggests is,

in effect, a type of glider, but it is in this, and not in

balloons, he sees the possibilities of the future -

possibilities and nothing more.

       If consideration is given to what he has advanced, he

says at the end of his article, "perhaps in time to come

there may be some one who knows how better to make use of our

suggestion and introduction, to construct an addition such as

will make actual the suggestion we give thereon." And then,

after referring to the phenomena of bird flight, kites,

falling men being preserved from injury by the blowing out of

their capes, as evidences of the possibility of human flight,

he concludes: "Still, when the first trials are made, one

must expect to pay a price for experience, and let that price

fall on an arm or a leg."

       Here ends the article proper. But, as will be recalled,

this article together with the rest of Daedalus IV had been

sent to Polhem for his comments, These latter, which were not

encouraging, are given in a letter of September 5, 1716, and

end with the suggestion: "But it can do no harm if what is

already written here on the subject is printed together with

the other [i.e. the article on the Resistance of the Air],

if only a distinction be then made, and the known be set over

against the unknown." (OQ. 258 = LM. p. 115) Following

this suggestion, Swedenborg, without any explanation or

apology for himself, appends Polhem's criticism to his

article: After a short French quotation from Fontanelle's

Plurality of Worlds, to the effect that in this matter of

flying "there is still something to do for the ages to come,"

Swedenborg continues:       



"The learned Assessor Palhammar expresses a more doubtful

opinion thereon, as follows: 'Regarding flight or flying

artificially, this would seem to present the same difficulty

as the artificial making of perpetual motion, gold, etc.,

though at first glance it is no less feasible than

desirable.* When one considers the matter more closely, he

meets with something which nature will deny; such as, in the

present case, that all ordinary machines do not have the same

proportions in the large as in the small, though all the

parts are made alike and according to proportion in all their

parts. . . From this it comes about that large bodies are

finally unable to bear themselves, and, according to nature

herself, she provides not only a very light and strong

material for feathers, but also entirely different sinews and

bones in the body itself, such as are required for strength

or lightness, which are not found in other bodies. For one

comes to the desired result with so much the greater

difficulty because of lack of those suitable materials and

requisites which are demanded therefor, before a human being

can go in a machine. But, were it possible that a person

could move and direct all that so great a machine as carries

him can need, then the thing is done, yet one must indeed be

well able to make use of the wind, if it should be suitable

and steady.'" Swedenborg then adds: "Enough about our

Daedalus." (OQ. 1:257 = LM. p.114)

       * Here in Polhem's letter come the words: "For all that one eagerly desires, one has generally a greater inclination to work out." (OQ. 1:257 = LM. p.115.)

Among Swedenborg's manuscripts preserved in Linkoping is found a description of the construction of this flying machine, together with a drawing of the machine itself. This description, while more detailed and exact, is in effect the same as the published account. It is probably one of those drawings and descriptions with which Swedenborg busied himself while at Rostock. (Mech. Inv. p. 20 or Suggestions for a Fly. Mach. 1921, SSA)

       The third article concerns experiments on bullets made

by "Em. Es."

       In the first, Swedenborg gives the reason why, if a

leaden bullet tightly covered with paper be thrust into the

flame of a candle, the paper will not burn off until the lead

of the bullet begins to melt.

       The second deals with the experiments Swedenborg had

tried the preceding winter as to the resistance offered to

bullets in snow. From these, he draws the following



       1. That the lightest thing, such as snow and water,

which seems to have hardly more power of resistance than

feathers and down, can determine the swift course of a


       2. That this power of resistance increases according to

the obliquity of the resisting material. Swedenborg proposes

to demonstrate this by covering a table three or four inches

with clay and then shooting bullets at it at various angles.

3. After first striking the snow, the bullet seems to

possess two determinations, the one given to it in the first

place and the other given to it by the angle of contact with

the snow - hence



its reboundings. This is illustrated by a billiard ball

knocking another in the course of its flight. "This subject

demands further investigation."

The number closes with a 15-page article entitled "A New and sure Method to find east and west lengths, that is, Longitudes of Places, both at sea and on land, by means of the moon; presented by 'Eman. Swedberg.'"

"It may be surprising," says the author, "that one will present a new and sure method of finding the longitude of places . . . by means of the moon, when yet the moon in this respect has defeated the foremost astronomers, in that each of them who thought he had found the longitude, it would seem as though the moon had deceived them and given them a good mind and a gladsome feeling that they would attain what was sought after; but, as soon as they have advanced to practice, the moon has made moonshine and mockery of it, as it were, and so has given them a false appearance for the right. So also, it may be thought, might it be with the present method which I venture to present and make public as more sure than the former. The whole matter might, moreover, be brought into great doubt because of the fact that for twelve centuries the whole learned world has worked on this problem in vain, though a great number of men have made it their highest study, and given it their care and the utmost efforts of their brain; and also the fact that the most learned men, both in former ages and in ours, - men who surpass me one-hundredfold in astronomy, both practical and theoretical - have not yet found the solution in this matter, and they who thought they had found it, have yet in the end acknowledged their mistakes and also have demolished and discredited their own discovery. What has been said would be the best of reasons for overthrowing and demolishing the thoughts and imaginations which I have embraced with respect to this method, and also to give to others a strong prejudice and prejudgment, that no such method can any longer be discovered - and still less by means of the moon, which has already led so many into error and has deprived the learned of so much hoped-for honor, gain and reward.

"But if one examines into the cause which produced their failure, that cause is by no means found in the moon itself, which God seems to have established and ordained to guide mariners on their course, but in the way in which she has been observed."

Swedenborg then proceeds to point out the uncertainties of former methods based on the moon, due to the difficulty, especially at sea, of finding the true position of that body. This has been admitted, he continues, by "Ricciolus, Kircher and other great mathematicians . . . and they conclude their investigations . . . with the wish and hope that in time some one will come forward who will show how to observe and point out the moon without the abovementioned obstacles and difficulties; and him they call by anticipation, the Discoverer of the Longitude. Thus, I know not whether I have too much confidence in myself in absolving this method, which I now present, from all the difficulties which those mentioned above have been subject to; and [in believing] that with this method, is removed from our path that which has prevented the moon from being taken as a lamp for voyagers to the east and the west. This, in all humility, I will submit to the judgment of the learned."




       Then follows the method itself - or rather, two methods,

one easier than the other. It is based fundamentally on

observation of the moon when in line with any two fixed stars

whose latitude and longitude are known from the astronomical

tables. Thus, the apparent position of the moon is

ascertained, and then, by a mathematical calculation which

Swedenborg explains, its true position, and so the longitude.

The method of observing the longitude on land was by

observing the moon in eclipse; and by his new method of

observing the moon when in line with two fixed stars and then

observing its progress across that line, Swedenborg produces

all those phenomena of a lunar eclipse on which calculations

for ascertaining the longitude on land may be based.

       The last paragraph of the article refers to those lunar

tables which Flamsteed himself had assured Swedenborg that he

would construct. "Yet, before one can put into actual

practice our discovery of finding the longitude, one must

have accurate and particular tables of the longitudes,

latitudes, right ascensions and declinations of all the

stars. One expects these from the learned and experienced

Flamsteed in England who already had this matter in hand four

years ago, and very likely has now brought it to the light of

day, though they have not come into our hands. When one gets

the opportunity of consulting them, it remains only to

continue in the way now commenced."

       Ever since his acquaintance with Flamsteed, Swedenborg

had been looking forward to the publication of his lunar

tables. Indeed, as above indicated, they were indispensable

to the use of his method, and the lack of them was apparently

the only reason which had deterred him from writing up that

method for presentation to the French astronomers.

       The closing words of his Daedalus article indicate

Swedenborg's firm faith in the utility of his method - a

faith which he retained all his life.

       "Meanwhile, I feel assured that the longitude of places

can be found by this method," he says, "and as yet I see no

reason that can overthrow and demolish this assurance, save

the uncertainty of the astronomical tables of the progression

of the moon. This cannot be taken as any reason whatever

since, so far as I know, no astronomer has yet used it to

overthrow earlier investigators who sought to find the

celestial and terrestrial longitudes by means of the moon."

This article constitutes the most important scientific work thus far written by Swedenborg, and as such, it was not long in receiving notice, namely, in a Disputation "De Planeta Venere" by Birger Vassenius, which the author dedicated to Polhem and Emanuel Swedberg. The latter is especially lauded for his mathematical work and his skill in astronomy, as shown by the lately printed Longitude. This is the first known public mention of Swedenborg as an author. (ACSD 143)



Daedalus IV was not advertised until April 1717, when the following advertisement appeared in the Stockholm Kunggorelse of April 2d:

       "Herewith is announced that the fourth* part of the

so-called Daedalus Hyperboreus came out some time ago,

containing Councillor of Commerce Polheimer's Notes on the

Resistance of Medium and on the property of falling weights.

Also N.N. suggestions for a machine to use sail and wings and

attempt flight. Some experiments and their resistance in snow

and water; and a new invention to find the longitude of

places, by Emanuel Swedberg."

       * The original has "fifth."

Swedenborg had hoped to get something from Professor Bromell,* who was well known for his geological collections; but, as usual, he failed. From beginning to end, the burden of the Daedalus rested on his own shoulders alone. (OQ. 1:257 = LM. p. 113)

* Adjunkt Bromell was appointed professor in Stockholm in 1716.

Polhem designed to follow up his article on the resistance of air, and he writes to this effect in a letter addressed to Swedenborg in Upsala and dated September 1716. Some things in this letter are worthy of quotation as illustrating both Swedenborg's own work on the Daedalus and, more especially, the intellectual position of a man with whom Swedenborg was so closely associated for a number of years.

       "If the learned desire enjoyment and honor from what

they teach others," Polhem writes, "they ought to have a

better knowledge in various particulars of that which is now

taught; for in many things nature has wholly different

conditions than Des Cartes, and almost all his followers

think - which can never be learned better than by daily

experience in mechanics, and also a thoroughgoing search into

causes; and, though it is very little that I have gained

herein . . . yet I hope my principles will be able to pave

the way to what remains, for I never approve of anything

which cannot bear examination for all the cases and

circumstances which follow therewith, and as soon as one

thing contradicts it, I hold the whole foundation to be

false.* It should, moreover, give the learned mathematicians

no little honor if they could show what use all their fine

figures serve in practical matters. . . In short, so long as

I live, I hope matter for printing will not be wanting, as

long as Mein Herr is pleased to take the trouble to

calculate, draw, write up, and prepare all that pertains

thereto; for such work wearies me, what with many other

occupations and cares which daily occasions bring me."       

(OQ. 1: 260 = LM. p.117-18)

       * Swedenborg, in his writings, occasionally expresses the same thought.

While Swedenborg was thus busily engaged on literary work in Upsala, a vacancy occurred in the University which seemed to promise him a more advantageous position, in the event of a laboratory or observatory being founded.

In October 1716, Professor Upmarck, the Skyttian Professor of Eloquence and Politics, received a call to become Censor of Books at Stockholm.



It was generally expected that the Secretary of the University would be appointed as his successor, and with this in mind Swedenborg, early in November, addressed the following letter to the Rector and Consistory:

       "Since by the advancement of the well-born Herr

Secretary Upmarck, a professorship becomes vacant in the

Academy, and probably Herr Secretary Gronwall will be

remembered as his successor, I approach your Magnificence and

the venerable Consistory in the deepest reverence with the

humble request that, with the coming vacancy after the above-

mentioned Herr Secretary, the venerable Consistory will be

pleased to keep me favorably in their thoughts; I seeking

thereby to serve the venerable Consistory and an opportunity

of showing with what great pleasure I am ever," etc. (UUH

2:79; LM. p. 120)

The letter was read at a meeting of the Consistory on November 14th, as coming from "Student Emanuel Swedberg." No action was taken. This might have been a disappointment to Swedenborg, but even before the letter was read to the Consistory, very different thoughts and expectations were filling his mind. He had heard from Polhem that the latter had been summoned to attend on the King at Lund, and Polhem asked Swedenborg to go with him. (ACSD 108A; Doc. 1:559)

The prospect of actually seeing the King, and in person asking his gracious support of the Observatory, the Laboratory, and the Daedalus Hyperboreus, was now to be realized. Much preparation had been made for this visit.

The four issues of the Daedalus were bound and issued with a new title-page, and with that Preface which, perhaps, had already been written a year before for presentation to the King himself, and Swedenborg took some copies with him when he left Upsala.

On the new title-page, a new verse, taken from the second edition of Ludus Heliconius, was substituted for the one printed on the title-page of no. I (see p. 101):       (OP. p. 80)

       Lo Daedalus, once mounting in the air

       Laughed at the snares King Midas set for him on earth.

       So, by thine art, my Daedalus, mounting on high,               

       Laugh at the snares the many doth set for thee.

The Dedication reads:

       "Mighty and ever gracious King

       "That I make bold to come forward with some small

mathematical investigations and observations and lay them

down in deepest submissiveness at your Majesty's feet is

because of the gracious solicitude your Royal Majesty is

pleased to show in respect to literary art in general, and

mathematical studies in particular, whereof it is a signal

proof that your Royal Majesty has ever regarded with grace

the arts and machines which Herr Assessor Palhammar, for the

service and use of your Royal Majesty and of the Kingdom, has

either already set up or has given a humble proposal for

their setting up.



       "Some of them I have described in this little work, and

added the observations of other learned men, your Royal

Majesty's subjects, together with my own investigations,

which I have sought to mature by the most earnest reflection

both at home and also in a five-year's expensive journey in

foreign lands where mathematical studies are most cultivated

and are in the highest esteem.

       "This is merely a beginning, ever gracious King; much

more still remains over, and hidden away, which, presumably,

will contribute great advantages to your Royal_ Majesty's

Kingdom, especially in the development of Manufactures,

Navigation, Artillery, and the art of shooting.

"If this work wins Your Majesty's Royal Grace, it will

certainly awaken many more, in submissiveness, to discover

their thoughts and to offer them for your Royal Majesty's

gracious pleasure. I remain, to the hour of my death,

       "Your Majesty's

              my ever Gracious King's

                     most humble and faithful subject

                                          EMANUEL SWEDBERG."

With regard to the other preparations for the visit to Lund, record of them was kept by Benzelius and is still preserved in Linkoping Diocesan Library. They consist of several documents, all of which have been photolithographed, but none of which has been published either in original or in translation.

The first is a comprehensive outline of the ultimate aims for which Swedenborg was to be the spokesman with the King: (LM. p.123)

              [Projects for the King] (Phot. 1:2)


1 The Mechanical Laboratory to be moved to Upsala, and

appropriation to be made for the Laboratory's support.

2 The models in Upsala to be given to it.

3 Under Assessor Polhem's direction.


1 A celestial Observatory at the Castle and elsewhere. 2 The

iron and metal pipes are appropriated to this. 3 Under the

ordering of the Governor of the Province [Per Ribbing].


1 A mathematical society. 2 For this, there is proposed an        increase in the price of every almanac - its privilege.

3 A double stipend. 4 Half of what they receive in net

profit on what is awarded them in new inventions and machines

- a beginning of which is Assessor Palhammar's Threshing

Machine, he retaining one quarter of the profit for himself.

5 President thereof. Assessors who are now in actual

service, and when means come in, something should be

appropriated [for those] who are taken into service.

6 A Director of threshing and other machines set up in the

country, who shall have one-sixth of the profit. (See Sv.A.o.AR Prot. p.368)



7 That the aforesaid society shall first of all fix on

inventions of mechanical machines serviceable for

manufacture, shipbuilding, artillery, mining, military power

mills, the art of shooting.*

       * Among Polhem's inventions which had been used by Stenbock in the Danish War of 1710 was a mill for grinding corn which could be carried around with the army, and of such mills, Stenbock ordered one for each regiment; also a device whereby a cannon could be raised and lowered in sighting with great ease and exactness. The "art of shooting" mentioned in the text perhaps has in mind Swedenborg's air gun. (Bring, Polhem, pp. 43-45, 42.)

The above is further developed in a note, as follows: (Phot. 1:200)

              Three Points to the King

1 That the Machines which are in Stockholm be moved to Upsala; from the Bergscollegium.

2 That there be a professor of mechanics in place of some other, to which I be recommended.

3 That there be a society, or that there be a collegium curiosorum in Upsala as in other countries . . .

5 That the stamping of small coins be approved by the King, which is handled in the Bergscollegium; and that it be granted in the same way as the grant was made to Mons. Lunstrom.*

* Probably Magnus Lundstrom. (1687-1720). He was an inspector and building master in Stockholm until 1716 when he was appointed by the Bergscollegium as Konstmastare at Falun (in charge of all machinery). He had to leave, however, in about a year, because Polhem had secured the appointment of another person. In a letter sent to Benzelius in Dec. 1715, Swedenborg passes some severe criticism on a "Machine of Monsieur Lundstrom of Avsta." It would thus seem that Lundstrom was in Avsta, i.e., Avesta; and since the copper coins were made in that place, that he had the monopoly of making them. (OQ. 1:233 = LM. p. 75)

The following, which is not in Swedenborg's writing, deals

more particularly with the proposed society:       (Phot. 1: 1)

              Petition for a Literary Society.

1 The privilege and name of a Royal Society.

2 For its members, the characters of Assessors, Socii, or members of the Royal Society; a notary and two amanuenses.

3 His Royal Majesty's gracious declaration and command from his Royal grace, and advancement for these man above others.

4 It is petitioned that either his Royal Majesty will in his graciousness command that none other shall be president save the Chancery Collegium; or will establish a perpetual presidency, or will give leave to the existing members to request and choose a president for themselves.

5 Leave and authority afterwards, with the consent of the president or Chancery Collegium, to receive many members or collegiates ad libitum, and also a vice-president.

6 Item: To set up certain laws, and freely to arrange and order all else that concerns the existence of this society.



7 It is petitioned of his Royal Majesty or the Chancery Collegium;

1. One copy of every half or quarter ark which is printed, in

Sweden, which shall at once, by the first post, be sent here,

whether it be from a book which is being published or some

smaller writing; with a fixed fine for all book printers or

commissioners [who fail to comply].

2. Free postage for letters, both to and from the society.       

3. The right of censuring to belong to the society's


4. Freedom from duty on paper.

5. A privilege [monopoly] on what is published.

       Moreover, a long paper was prepared, by Elfvius or

Benzelius, showing the necessity of an astronomical

observatory as soon as ever peace comes; especially in

Sweden, where the skies are clearer, where best could be

observed the Aurora Borealis, etc., and where not even the

longitude of Stockholm or Upsala was now known. (Phot. l:


       The Royal Society of England had invited them to send in

meteorological observations, but, while they must ask that

Society for much information in astronomy, they could offer

nothing in return. All could be done if there were a single

observatory in Upsala under the professor of astronomy -

"unless his Majesty should graciously be pleased, here as in

other places, to appoint one or more observers and pensioners

for this purpose." The use of the observatory to the students

is also noted.

On November 12th, Swedenborg and Palhammar paid a short visit to Brunsbo on their way to Lund, Swedenborg having probably joined Palhammar at Stiernsund. (ACSD 109)

A few days later they arrived at Lund, then the capital of Sweden, where Swedenborg lodged at the same house as Bernard Cederholm, a chancery secretary who had been with Charles XII through all his sojourn in Turkey, including the Kalabalika. Swedenborg had last seen Cederholm at Greifswalde where the latter was on his way from Turkey to Stralsund. But Cederholm seems to have been a friend of the family, or, at any rate, of Bishop Swedberg. The latter writes him from Brunsbo on December 20th on sundry matters, after which he continues:

"I am glad to learn that my son Emanuel has the good fortune

to have lodging in the same house as Herr Secretary. His

drawback, according to human judgment, seems to be that he is

young; but when God has given a young man as great

intelligence and experience as an old one, God must have the

honor." (OQ. 1:259, 230 = LM. pp. 117, 63; ACSD 12A)

In Lund also Swedenborg again meets his old student friend Rhyzelius, who had arrived in Lund one month earlier in order to take up his new duties as one of the army chaplains, but who was already, in favor with the King. (Helander p. 75)

Another friend he now met was Martin Hegardt who, with Erik Alstryn, had resided with Doctor Edzardus (1709-12) during the time Swedenborg was in London.

Hegardt, who was three years older than Swedenborg, was a

native of Scana and had now become Professor of Theology in

Lund University. It was in his house that Charles XII lived

during the whole of his two years' stay in Lund. Regardt also

was in favor with the King who, in 1717, became a godfather

to his son.


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 132                                                                                                    [1716

In Goteborg also he probably became acquainted with the Senator General Count Carl Gustav Morner (1658-1721), with whom he seems to have been intimate. (Doc. 1:302, 306)

Swedenborg seems to have lost no time in presenting himself before the King. At last he actually stood before that Hero whom so long he had admired at a distance, and he had the honor of handing to him in person the bound copy of his Daedalus for 1716.

       Charles XII, though in his government an extreme and

unbending autocrat, was yet very democratic and familiar with

those whom he met in his daily life, if also somewhat trying.

Thus, he would receive his friends and others in his bedroom,

and sometimes as early as three o'clock in the morning - for

the daytime he devoted very often to long rides. (ill.

Pommern-Jahrbuch, pp. 44, 77, 80)

The King viewed the Daedalus, and especially the intention behind it, "with grace," Swedenborg writes, adding:

"The Daedalus has enjoyed such grace that it has lain on his

Majesty's table this three weeks and has given matter for

many talks and questions, and is shown to many persons by his

Majesty himself."       (OQ. 1:263 = LM. p. 135-36)

We also learn from Eric Benzelius that the Daedalus Hyperboreus "put Swedenborg in very favorable consideration with the great King Charles XII." (Brefwaxl. s. XIII)

On December 6th, one week after his arrival in Lund, Palhammar addressed to the King - doubtless with the King's previous knowledge - a letter recommending Swedenborg for service. Appealing to the King's well known Interest in mechanics, and to his recognition of the difficulty of this subject and the scarcity of men who are able to advance it, he continues:

"At this time, I know of no one who appears to be better

fitted for mechanics than Herr Emanuel Swedberg; but his

present application to other studies is caused by the small

regard which . . . is meted out to the science of mechanics."

He therefore appeals to the King "to grant some honorable

advantage to one who by nature is fitted for mechanics,

rather than, in lack thereof, to allow so useful a subject to

apply himself to some other pursuit. And as the Royal

Bergskollegium no less needs some one member who understands

mechanics, than such as know the mining regulations . . .

therefore, I would submit to your Majesty's gracious decision

whether this Swedberg - who otherwise has fitted himself for

a profession in the Academy - may not be advanced to the post

of an Assessor in the above-mentioned College, so that he may

thereby be kept in that field wherein he will likely be of

greater service to your Majesty than if he were at an

Academy. And if your Majesty should graciously grant this,

one of the mechanical stipends would at first suffice for his

salary together with a gracious assurance that, at the first

vacancy, he should enjoy the salary of an ordinary Assessor

without applying for further authorization."* (NCL 1895: 151)

       * The State had two mathematical stipends which were much sought after. They were used to support students under Polhem. The salary was 300 dal.s.m. The salary of an Assessor was over 1200 dal.s.m., whereas an Extraordinary



With a recommendation from a man like Polhem, whom the King so greatly admired, Swedenborg's appointment would seem to have been assured. Yet the King instituted inquiries, including inquiries of Swedenborg himself, "as to my mind, studies, etc." Moreover, Swedenborg's friends were consulted - among them, presumably, Hegardt, the King's host, and Rhyzelius, his Chaplain. At any rate, Swedenborg himself informs us that he had "the good fortune to have good backers." And then the fact of his being the son of the ecclesiastical favorite of Charles's father, must also have had its influence; but to a man of Charles XII's clear discernment, what must most have influenced him was his own meeting with the eager, ambitious, learned and traveled man, now twenty-eight years old, and the testimony of his attainments and tastes as seen in the Daedalus Hyperboreus.

The appointment was made but not without exciting enmity and secret opposition. To advance one at once to the equivalent of being an Assessor without first going through the various preliminary stages of auscultant, magister, etc., was opposed; and doubtless for reasons of direct self-interest; for Lund was now the center of glory from which alone favors, honors, gains were to be hoped for. With regard to this opposition, Swedenborg writes:

"What pleased me most is that the King gave so kind and

gracious a judgment concerning me, and himself defended me

before those who thought the worst of me, and afterwards

assured me of further grace and consideration, of which I

have become assured both directly and indirectly." (OQ.

1:262 = LM. p. 135)

Swedenborg writes to Benzelius that the King offered him "three characters or functions" to choose from. What these offers were specifically, we do not know; perhaps they were: 1. A mechanical stipend, or to become Palhammar's general Assistant. 2. Assessor in the Bergskollegium. 3. The teaching of mechanics as a Director of a mechanical laboratory. (Ibid.) However this may be, Swedenborg chose the office suggested by Polhem, namely, to become an Assessor of the Bergskollegium at the first vacancy, and meanwhile, to assist Polhem in the great, difficult, and highly important undertakings which the King, at this time, ordered him to carry out.

It seems, however, that even to the last, an effort was made at least to minimize the fruits of Swedenborg's favor with the King.

       "Since my ill-wishers played too many intrigues with the

above-mentioned warrant," he writes, "and couched it in

ambiguous terms, it was sent back to his Majesty together

with some comments, I well knowing that I had wherewith to

back myself up. A new one was then at once made out for me,

and with it a gracious letter to the Bergskollegium. The

opponent had to sit at his Majesty's own table and write in

duplicate in two forms, of which he chose the best. Thus,

they who sought to do me the worst harm were glad to come out

of the matter with honor and reputation - so nearly had they

burned their fingers." (OQ. 1:262, 263 = LM. pp. 135,136)

Both the warrants here referred to have been preserved.* The first is dated December 10th, and the second December 18th. The difference between the two is that in the first, Swedenborg is appointed to accompany



Polhem, "with the rank and character of an Assessor Extraordinary of the Bergskollegium"; whereas in the second he is specifically appointed Extraordinary Assessor in the Bergskollegium, yet at the same time assigned to accompany Polhem and assist him.              (CTO MSS. 3; ACSD 112)

* The earlier one, in State Archives, Biog. Swedenborg, and the later one in the Bergskollegium, Kongliga Bref.

At the same time that the second Warrant was made out, the King also sent a letter to the Bergskollegium, notifying the College of Swedenborg's appointment as Extraordinary Assessor, and his assignment, for the present, as Polhem's Assistant, and commanding them to give him a "seat and voice in the College whenever he can be present, and especially when such matters come up as concern mechanics." This letter gave particular pleasure to Swedenborg as being a signal mark of royal confidence, and he is careful to send a copy of it to his brother-in-law. As significative of the honor given by the King, it may be noted that no extraordinary assessor had been appointed since 1684, and that no past holder of this appointment had the right of a seat in the College; they could merely cooperate with the regular Assessors in their work. The Bergskollegium administered the mining laws, which were very carefully administered. (OQ. 1:263 = LM. 136; Almquist, p. 97; Robinson, p. 17)

Perhaps because he saw something of the plots to injure Swedenborg, the King, as a mark of honor to Swedenborg and, it may be, also of punishment on the plotters, relieved Swedenborg of those payments to lower officials which always accompanied royal favors. At any rate, Swedenborg writes:

"The journey [to Lund] went off with very little expense,

beingonly travel money. In other words, what otherwise it is

ordinarily the custom to lay out for warrants has not cost me

a styver; this I affirm by my soul's salvation." (OQ. 1:263

= LM. p. 136)

The work which Polhem had been ordered to carry out, and for which Swedenborg was to be his Assistant, consisted in general of two important and difficult operations - the dock at Karlskrona and the inland canal.

       We have already spoken of the improvements recommended

by Polhem, to be carried out at Karlskrona. The chief of

these were: (1) The building of a dry dock by blasting out

the rock of an island, and (2) the building of a dam strong

enough to supply more than one mill. There were also

improvements in the making of cables and of anchors, a

machine for careening ships, and another for drawing them on

land; the establishment of saw mills and planing mills,

supplied by the great dam, etc.; to which there is added in

Swedenborg's hand the recommendation that sweet water be

brought to the island city of undersea pipes, and waste hemp

and rope be used for making coarse paper. Doubtless, all

these recommendations were considered favorably, but Polhem

was ordered only to commence building the dam.

       According to Nordberg, Scheldon showed Charles XII a

model of the proposed dock, but he was unable to build the

great dam necessary before the proposed dock could be

excavated. On this, he was ordered to consult Polhem, and

probably the consultation took place before Polhem visited

Lund. (Carl XII, p. 602)



The other great work to which we have alluded, the canal building, was more, far-reaching but not so immediate. Its undertaking came about in a singular way. After Swedenborg had left Upsala for Lund, he received a letter from his brother-in-law Benzelius, intimating "that it would be useful for merchandise to pass through Gothenburg and the Gotha Alf and Venner," and calling attention to a letter on the subject written in 1523 by Bishop Brask of Linkoping, who was the first to suggest this inland water passage.

"Of this letter," writes Benzelius, many years later, "I gave

a copy to my brother-in-law Emanuel Swedenborg, as he was

then with his Majesty in Lund, 1716, and from it occasion was

taken to consider a channel between Vetter and Venner and

also navigation from Goteborg to Venner." (Brefwaxl.

XXIII; Linkop. Handl. pp. 189, 191)

       Erik XIV and Charles IX had both taken up the plan, and

also had done some little work in connection with it by means

of Dutch builders who had worked for securing navigation

between Lake Venner and Goteborg. The ruling motive which led

to the desire for a canal to connect Stockholm and the

interior country with Goteborg by a water way, was the same

now as when it was first broached in 1523, namely, to avoid

the imports and hindrances, especially in time of war, which

the Danes imposed on all vessels traveling through the

Oresund; and Holland was just as interested in the matter as

was Sweden. (Bring, Troll. Kan. Hist. p. 42 seq.)

       King Charles XII was at once enamored of the idea; for

despite all his faults, he had a keen vision of the benefits

which would thence result to the commerce of Sweden. He was

attracted, moreover, by the fact that in Polhem he had a

genius who could manage the whole affair without recourse, as

ever in the past, to the Dutch Canal Builders. And so Polhem,

and with him Swedenborg, was given a commission first to see

about the Karlskrona work and then to investigate the whole

matter of the canal and report on its practicability and


       The assignment of these tasks to Polhem was a high

honor, and the honor was still further emphasized by the King

who, on Tuesday, December 18th - the day when Swedenborg

received his appointment - raised Palhammar to the rank of

noble, when his name became Polheim.

While these negotiations were going on with the King, Swedenborg was busy with his literary work in preparation for Daedalus V; and we can imagine also that these days had their pleasant moments in the meeting of old friends, in the discussion of the deeds of the hero King, and also of science and literature; and we can well imagine that Swedenborg did not neglect the opportunity to talk to the King's Secretary Cronhjelm (who had signed his warrant) concerning that book of fables which he had dedicated to his older brother Gustaf.

The King was interested in the Daedalus, and evidently encouraged Swedenborg to go on with his undertaking; and, in consequence, Swedenborg anticipated both support and advantages from subsequent issues something which he holds out in his effort to get literary cooperation.

"If Doctors Roberg and Bromell do not fail to increase Part V

with their own contributions, it may lead to their own

profit." (OQ. 1:263 = LM. p. 136)



Swedenborg's inability to get practical cooperation in the Daedalus, in the way of contributed articles, is astonishing and would seem to indicate inertia or absence of enthusiasm. Even in the single case when Dr. Roberg contributed his thoughts, it was yet Swedenborg on whom devolved the labor of writing them out suitable for publication, and indeed, so considerable was his work that he wondered whether Dr. Roberg would wish his name to appear at all. It was certainly not due to any omission on Swedenborg's part. In June 1716, he asks Dr. Roberg to continue his articles on salt, as promised in the article itself (Daed. Hyper. II, pp. 29 ad fin). In September, Benzelius is asked to contribute a life of Stiernhelm; and Dr. Bromell is not only asked to write something about his "curiosities," that is, his mineral and geological collection, but he appears actually to have promised to comply, and plates were made to illustrate his articles. In December, Roberg and Bromell are again urged to contribute, as noted above, and early in 1717, Dr. Roberg is asked specifically to "contribute his thoughts on snow and freezing, which he promised" - but all these requests were in vain. In the end, the whole work of writing fell on Swedenborg alone. (OQ. 1:263, 239, 252, 256-7 = LM. pp. 136, 86, 106, 112-3; D. Hyper. III pl. 1) (OQ.1:266 = LM. p. 145) (D. Hyper. V pl. 1)

As to the Mechanical Laboratory, the Astronomical Observatory, and the Learned Society, nothing apparently was done. "In respect to the establishment of the Society," writes Swedenborg, immediately after his departure from Lund, "nothing is as yet declared; yet I shall not forget it in the proper time, though the Upsala letter* will probably lie over." A few weeks later, when speaking of reprinting his article on Finding the Longitude, he writes:

* Perhaps the documents by Elfvius or Benzelius concerning the necessity of an observatory, spoken of above.

"Thus also I hope that something can be determined concerning

an observatory and the society; as to which, nothing is yet

done, though a word would have been enough to accomplish the

matter if the Councillor of Commerce had found that it could

have been brought into being and could have been maintained

without the person who was in mind attending the society or

at least without him being present in Upsala. Yet, at the

next time [i.e., when he next sees the King], request shall

certainly be made concerning the observatory." (OQ. 1:265 =

LM. p. 139)

It would seem from this that, while the idea of a society and an observatory was looked on with favor, Polhem was lukewarm owing, it would appear, to some jealousy of Swedenborg; at any rate, nothing was done about the matter, and Swedenborg writes from Karlskrona that the "Upsala letter will have to wait over." He refers, perhaps, to the letter by Elfvius or Benzelius showing the necessity of an observatory in Sweden.              (OQ. 1:263 = LM. p. 136)

As already stated, the King was greatly interested in the Daedalus itself - the first learned journal to be published in Sweden - and he suggested to the delighted Swedenborg that it should be printed in Latin as well as in Swedish; he even went to the trouble of pointing out exactly "where the Swedish should be [and] where the Latin." (OQ. l: 266 = LM. p.144)



       One can well imagine the cause of the King's suggestion.

The King being himself a mechanical and mathematical genius,

was interested in the journal and proud of it as giving

promise of European fame for some of Sweden's sons. Its

articles gave matter of discourse for many royal

conversations, and these in turn resulted in the King showing

the Daedalus to others, including some of the educated

foreigners, ambassadors, and others who were in Lund, few if

any of whom knew Swedish. There can be little doubt but that

the King was impressed by the advisability of printing a

translation in Latin, the language of the whole cultivated

world, so that his auditors could read for themselves. (OQ.

1:263 = LM. p. 135)

The King was especially interested in the article on salt which had appeared in the second number of the Daedalus, and which dealt with a matter whose vital importance to the country had been but recently demonstrated by the almost prohibitive price of salt.

       "As to the project with respect to the making of salt,"

writes Swedenborg, "his Majesty discoursed thereon and took

the opposite side, proving it from Hungarian wine which can

be entirely frozen. He related concerning himself when he was

in Poland, that he had distributed it to the lads piecemeal

with his sword, though it left an inner kernel of the very

essence as large as a musket ball." (OQ. 1:266 = LM. p.


But perhaps the most signal mark of the King's favor which Swedenborg experienced was in the matter of their conversations on mathematics. Swedenborg greatly admired the mathematical genius of his hero, and at the same time, his unassuming modesty. Of this Swedenborg testifies some years later:

       "He must have had a deeper understanding than he showed

outwardly," he writes, "especially as, in his intercourse

generally, he gave people to understand that he deemed it low

and vulgar to put on the air and the ways of superiority and

learning in the company of such as have regarded and still

regard the external and superficial as wise, and the internal

and real as unwise." One of his expressions was that "he

regarded him who was ignorant of mathematics as only half a

man." But he exhibited "all his grace and favor toward those

whom he considered able to bring a useful science to some

degree of perfection." (Doc. 1:564)

Five years after his first meeting with the King, Swedenborg wrote concerning his attainments as follows:

       "I suppose that not one man in a thousand would imagine

that a Hero of such renown, acquired from so many

achievements, possessed also a most profound and acute

judgment, and a force of mind the most penetrating, in all

matters belonging to arithmetical calculation. But it was my

good fortune frequently to hear him discourse on such

subjects, in particular, as belong to mathematics and

arithmetic. . . Another proof of his skill in calculation was

afforded by the ease with which he could solve the most

difficult problems by mental operations simply, which would

have required others the most laborious and fatiguing

methods."        (Miss. Obs. 113, 116)



"I confess," says Swedenborg, elsewhere, "that I have never been able to understand how by mere reflection, and without employing the customary mode of algebraical computation, such things could be wrought out." He then adds that the King wished to sharpen his wits with Polhem whom he knew to excel in these matters. This is undoubtedly true, and explains also the cause that led Charles XII to be so gracious to the brilliant, mechanical genius Swedenborg, who was so eager and zealous in striving to advance his country in science and in manufacture. (Doc. 1:560)

During this visit to Lund in December 1716, Swedenborg and Polhem frequently waited on the King, when the discussion turned mainly on mechanics and the computation of forces, and also on geometry, arithmetic, etc., and the King showed "decided interest" in asking questions as though he wished to obtain information without it being observed; yet, "now and then," says Swedenborg, "he would let us perceive that he was by no means as ignorant in these matters as he pretended, which caused us to be more careful and guarded" not to speak of generalities or uncertainties.                                           (Doc. 1: 559)

       "One day," says Swedenborg, "the conversation was as to

the origin of our numbers, and the explanation was given that

it was due to people having originally counted on their ten

fingers, and that with the invention of figures this system

had been retained. The King pointed out how inconvenient the

number 10 was as the basis of our calculations since it so

soon diverts into a fraction, and contains no squares. It

would have been better if 8 or 16 had been used. (Miss.

Obs. 113,114)

       The King was highly pleased with the talk, and desired

that a trial be made of a system based on 8 or 16. It was

pointed out, however, that new names would be necessary.


       The King then commanded Swedenborg* to carry out this

work on the basis of 8. Swedenborg did this in the course of

a few days in a paper wherein he pointed out the agreements

of his system with the current Swedish coins, weights, and

measures, and the ease with which the system could be used

for the more speedy finding of cubes, squares, etc., and for

other calculations. (Ibid. 115)

       * That Swedenborg saw the King alone on this occasion is shown by the fact that in 1740, when Polhem was still living, he wrote that he was the only living person who could tell of this incident (see p. 600).

       "When his Majesty had looked at my specimen twice or

thrice, although he saw that it clearly had certain

advantages unknown in the decimal calculus, yet he would not

honor it with his approbation because, so far as he could

judge, he considered it too easy both in conception and

practice. He therefore immediately said that he wished some

other number than eight to have been selected; some number,

in short, which might contain both a cube and a square, and

yet be referred to the octonary scale and reducible to unity

by constantly halving." The number 64 was the



only nominator which would fill these conditions, but       

Swedenborg objected that with 64, the multiplication table up       

to 64 times 64 would read 4,096, and the system would require       

the memorizing of 3,969 numbers. "But in proportion as I       

raised difficulties," he writes, "his Majesty only became       

more eager and desirous to try this calculation. He seemed to       

court difficulties and would answer only that those I had       

adduced would be compensated for by greater advantages."

(Miss. Obs. 115)

       One or two days later, Swedenborg was again summoned to       

the royal presence, and the subject was again brought up. But       

just as Swedenborg was commencing again to point out the       

difficulties of the 64 system, the King took from his table       

a paper which he handed to Swedenborg, "and to my great       

astonishment," says the latter, "I saw that he had invented       

not only new characters and numbers (bearing a considerable       

resemblance to the letters of his own name), and which       

proceeded in a regular series to 64, by a most happy and       

easily remembered division, but likewise fresh denominations;

both being so contrived that they might be extended to       

myriads, whilst the character and denomination would       

constantly vary. But when I perceived collaterally some new       

methods for performing addition and multiplication by this       

calculus, which were produced artificially, or by       

characteristic marks in the numbers themselves, together with       

other most ingenious attempts to facilitate the employment of       

this system, I could not but admire the heroic force of his       

mind; and, full of wonder, I felt obliged to confess that       

this great monarch and man was not merely my rival but my       

conqueror in my own department."       (Ibid. 226)

The King's autographed paper* was given to Swedenborg, and some years later he writes of how highly he treasures it and, at the same time, promises eventually to give it to Upsala Library. Its whereabouts is now unknown.

* Consisting of 2 arks containing characters, names and rules (OQ. 1:275 = LM. p. 165)

As to the new system of numbering, Swedenborg not long afterwards wrote a little work, on this subject, and we shall defer to the consideration of that work any further discussion of this subject.

The immediate result of this visit to Lund, prior to the actual investigation of the Canal Route, was that on January 31st, 1717, Charles XII gave out an open letter for the establishment of a private company, a "sluice guild" which was to build, maintain, and profit from the navigation between Venner and Gothenburg; other privileges were also promised for the future. The sequel showed, however, that despite these promises, and despite the fact that Polhem himself offered to subscribe one thousand dal.s.m., the appeal for subscribers, if ever made, was not successful.       (Bring, Troll.Kan.Hist. p. 62)

A few days after his appointment, Swedenborg set out for Karlskrona together with Polhem. Here they stayed a week or so, looking over the ground, laying down the plan for the new dock, taking preliminary measures for its building, especially the building of the preparatory dam, and, of course, consulting Admiral Wachmeister and the shipbuilder Charles Sheldon* who had charge of the whole work. (Sv. Merc. 1761: 46-47)

* See Familjebok.



During his brief stay at Karlskrona, Swedenborg finds time to work on Daedalus V, which must now, be translated into Latin, and which he hopes Benzelius will be able to have published by April for presentation to the King.       He also thinks of having a reprint made of his article on Finding the Longitude.

Before leaving Karlskrona, he receives from his brother-in-law congratulations on at last having secured honorable employment. For these he writes:

"I am very grateful; I give the assurance on my conscience

that the only pleasure I find therein is that it will

presumably please my parents and d: Brother. This pleasure is

my greatest advancement and good fortune." (OQ. 1:264 =

LM. p. 139)

We have already stated that Charles XII was especially interested in the Daedalus article on saltmaking with its suggestions as to the practicability of developing brineries in Sweden. It was in consequence of this royal interest that Polhem and Swedenborg, while at Karlskrona, took the occasion to make experiments to ascertain whether saltworks would be profitable on the Baltic. But they

"found the water of this lake very slightly impregnated with

salt on account of being toward the north and diluted with

the waters of the rivers, so that it scarcely contains a

thirtieth part of its weight in salt, and still less at

certain periods, as was ascertained by an instrument."

(Person. Tids. p. 92, Miss. Obs. 65-66)

Swedenborg thus misses his Christmas holidays, when he had hoped to meet Eric Benzelius at Brunsbo, but, as he writes in January 1717:

"To leave Councillor of Commerce Polheimer in a place where

weighty designs are in hand, is as opposed to his Majesty's

intention and pleasure as to my advantage in the long run."

(OQ. 1:264 = LM. p. 139)

He writes this from Goteborg where he and Polhem arrived in the beginning of January 1717.

But on the way from Karlskrona to Goteborg, some important investigations were made to ascertain the amount of salt in the water at different places, with a view to the establishment of saltworks. From Karlskrona, Swedenborg and Polhem proceeded to Goteborg. (Person.Tids. p. 92; Miss. Obs. 65)

Swedenborg gives some account of the fruits of this journey in his Miscellaneous Observations which he published in 1722. About the straights of Helsingborg, he says: There is little salt because the North

Sea was mingled with the Baltic. At Halmstadt, 60 miles

farther north, there was too much river water entering the

sea; 50 miles still farther north at Warberg, the water was

richer, containing 1/16th of its weight in salt. Here, on a

nearby island, salt boiling had been carried on for some

time, and it had the advantage of a good supply of peat. From

Warberg to Gothenburg, the prospect was poor owing to the

rivers and especially the Gotha Alf. (Miss. Obs. p. 66)

From Gothenburg, they pursued the northward journey, still studying the question of saltworks. At Marstrand, the sea was found to be very salt, and the place was favorable for saltworks save for the high price of fuel; but from Uddevalla on to Stromstad, and particularly at Gulmarsberg a little northwest of Uddevalla, the prospects were excellent. There, Swedenborg



himself counted twenty-seven saltworks, all of course on a small scale; yet they supplied all the salt used in Bohuslan - a fact not known to one person in Sweden out of a thousand. (Miss. Obs. p. 66, see p. 69; Pers. Tids. p. 92)

"Here," Swedenborg writes, "is found the best opportunity in

the world for saltmaking since there is sufficient abundance

of woods and streams which can advance the work, and one

could be confident in promising to procure as much as is

needed at from 8 to 10 d.k.m. per ton;* which will likely be

demonstrated at the place itself. Probably also I shall

confer with Dr. Roberg something thereon which can be sent to

the King, so that he can see a drawing of new salt pans which

are economical with wood and hasten the work in many ways;

also a drawing of a pump and graduating pipes, which are

likewise new; though there also, as in other places, by means

of evaporation and wind in the summer, and of freezing in the

winter, it can be refined to such a degree that it can be

worked up and boiled with the least trouble. There is a

brinery at Stromstad, but constructed with the greatest lack

of judgment, without any other graduation processes save that

it is pumped from the deep. It has also the most unsuitable

salt pans possible, yet with a single cord of wood they

succeed in actually producing three tons every twenty-four

hours.** If such work could be set going, the country would

take in more than the whole [value] of its iron manufacture

in which one must sometimes suffer a loss; but here there

would be a real gain for the country since it then keeps the

money in the country. We hope that the journey we made there

will in time become of importance."       (OQ. 1:266 = LM.

p. 145)

       * In peace times, the price was 42-1/2. Imported salt, on the other hand, in war times rose as high as 100 dal. a ton (Underrat. om Dock. p. 6; Bring, Pol. p. 53).

       ** In his Misc. Observations p. 67, speaking of the Saltworks at Stromstad, the author says that with a load of wood, 3 ells square, one man can produce in a single day one ton, or four tons Dutch.

It may here be added that the information concerning salt boiling which Swedenborg acquired on this journey, is incorporated in a work De Sale which he completed in 1729. In that work, pages 43-46, he describes the whole process used in Stromstad, and gives a delineation of the salt pans used.

During these journeys, Swedenborg was not satisfied merely to confine himself to the question of establishing saltworks. His keen sight observes many things which may be of use to him in his desire to enter into the causes of things. And it is not improbable that on this journey along the western coast of southern Sweden, he began to formulate in his mind those geological hypotheses which later he wrote out in his Height of Water. At any rate, he closely observed and made note of many of the phenomena which went to the forming of that theory.

Thus, at Helsingborg, he notes the formation of the strata of the ground. Here (he says, in his Height of Water)

"there are several layers of stone and earth; lowermost we

find brown stone, then red stone, and then granite; on top of

this sandstone of a fathom's thickness, and then layers of

slate, white, brown, blue and black; on top of this a layer

of coal; then a



blue slate like stone, which dissolves in water and is full

of salt like the sea." (Sc. and Phil. Tr. I:1:41)

In Miscellaneous Observations, he describes still another series of layers which he had observed near Helsingborg. (Miss. Obs. p.19)

In Uddevalla and Stromstad also, he was keenly observant of geological features, and there he makes certain observations which strongly indicate that Sweden was formerly the bed of a sea.                                   (Ibid. p. 149)

"On a high hill, not far from the city of Uddevalla," he

writes, "there is an entire tract of land consisting of

different kinds of shells [mussels and snails, Sc. and Phil.

Tr. I:1:21, 41] and of tortoises; a similar formation exists

near Stromstad [between Stromstad and Sundborg, ibid. 44]

in a still more lofty hill 70 ells above the level of the

sea; and also in the islands of Tiorn and Oroust.* These

remains are so abundant that the inhabitants burn them and

thus obtain a most excellent lime which they sell;" and he

adds, with scientific interest, "It would be worth while to

engrave the several species of these tortoises."

       * Two islands a few miles south of Stromstad.

It was probably at Uddevalla in January 1717, that Swedenborg jotted down the notes on Mussels and Snails, etc. (Phot. 1: 19) which are translated in Scientific and Philosophical Treatises I:1: 21-22; for though he dwells on the fields of shells found at Uddevalla, he makes no mention of the similar fields which he saw later in Stromstad.

At Stromstad, and also at Gullmarsberg, he noted in the granite what are called potholes - "one very near Stromstad, over which hangs a cliff having a large crevice in which a great many round and polished stones have been found," - which he takes as a sign of swirling water grinding into the granite by means of stones. (Sc. and Phil. Tr. I:1:43)

The investigation of saltworks, however, while important, was not the only work that lay before Polhem and Swedenborg. They were also to investigate as to the building of a water way through Lake Venner to Gothenburg. This study involved more than the building of sluices or locks between Lake Venner and Gothenburg. It involved the greater question of a water passage to the interior of the land, and, eventually, to Stockholm. At Uddevalla, they investigated the question as to whether the outlet should be there instead of at Gothenburg, which was a much longer route (60 miles as compared with 16-1/2); but, mainly for commercial reasons, Polhem favored Gothenburg. (Bring, Troll., p. 69)

They went also to Trollhatten where are the greatest falls; and they examined the falls at Wennersborg and the route whereby to circumvent them. From Wennersborg, probably via Skara and Brunsbo, they went to Gulspang and thence crossed over to Lake Hjalmar. It would thus appear that the route they examined did not include any part of Lake Vetter but was to pass through Orebro and Lake Hjalmar, some forty miles north of the route of Skagern and Toften



the present canal. In 1718 this route was changed to a more southern one, but after the death of Charles XII, Polhem again proposed it. (OQ.1:263, 264 = LM. pp. 136, 139; Bring, Troll. p. 73)

During the journey to Lake Hjalmar, Swedenborg is struck with some geological features which later he makes use of to show that the highest parts of Sweden were formerly isolated islands. Thus, he notes that Orebro on Lake Hjalmar is 60 ells above sea level, sinking down to 30 ells at Trollhatten, and to 10 at Gullspang; he also notes in the neighborhood of Orebro the existence of great isolated boulders, indicating the former presence of the sea. Of this journey of investigation with a view to reporting the canal project to the King, Swedenborg writes from Stiernsund, where their journey finally led them:


"All was found to be feasible, and at a cost which was not so

high as was thought. If I could contribute nothing more to

the matter, I am a stimulus to it" - which
indicates that Swedenborg was enthusiastic with regard to this project whereby to secure cheap transportation, and at the same time escape from the exactions of the Danes. (Sc. and Phil.Tr. I:1:52, 36, 2:87; Miss. Obs. p. 151; OQ. 1: 267 = LM. p. 146)

After his work of exploration, Swedenborg accompanied Polhem to the latter's home in Stiernsund, arriving there after the middle of February 1717. At this peaceful home he found much needed rest after his continuous and strenuous journeys. Here, the copy of Daedalus V - which should have appeared in January - was at last completed and sent off to Benzelius, "with the humble request that d: Brother will give it the same unsparing kindness as before." Swedenborg had already sent him the first installment from Brunsbo where he had made a short stop en route. The delay in getting the Daedalus ready was partly due to the advice received from the King to publish it in Latin and Swedish. Swedenborg's constant journeys since the time of that advice had given him little time for the translation work until he found rest in Stiernsund. (OQ.1:265 = LM. p. 144)

Swedenborg remained but a short time at Stiernsund, during which be probably assisted Polhem in preparing a report and estimate for the proposed canal building. At the end of February he went to his Starbo property, and later made a short journey of investigation around the neighboring mining district. Finally, on March 22nd he arrived in Stockholm and determined to stay there until Easter. After Easter he expected again to be called to Lund, and he hoped that Daedalus V would be ready by that time for him to offer it to his Majesty. On March 24th he writes to Benzelius:

"Ah, if only I were so fortunate as to get Daedalus V, yes,

and Daedalus VI, if it could be ready before Easter, to take

them down with me to offer to his Majesty. . . If it be

possible, it ought to be done."       (OQ. 1:267, 268 = LM.

p. 149)

In Stockholm he had plenty with which to occupy himself in preparation for the visit to the King; particularly in the marshaling of facts, suggestions and improvements connected with the proposed establishment of Swedish saltworks - a matter which greatly interested the King. In order to put the matter before his Majesty, Swedenborg now writes a Memorial on the Instituting of Saltworks in Sweden. Whether this Memorial was actually sent to Lund is not known, though it would seem probable in view of the King's support of this work. Swedenborg's draft is still preserved among his papers, and from this it appears that it forms the substance of a chapter in a little work he published two years later on The Dock, Sluices, and Saltworks. (Phot. 1:74; ACSD 133)



The Memorial in question sets forth the advantages Sweden has, especially in its cold whereby the water can be frozen to concentrate its salt before boiling, and the abundance of its forests supplying wood for boiling.

He then shows that the saltmaking at Uddevalla and Stromstad is very inefficient and could be greatly improved in quality, and cheapened in price by graduating and improved salt pans, etc.

[Note: Among the improvements contemplated by Polhem were a floating barge with a pump operated by a windmill, to pump the saltiest water from the bottom of the sea and convey it to the brinery by pipes; new gradier works, etc. (Person. Tids., p. 92; see De Sale p. 76)

After this, he proceeds to answer the various objections that may be raised. In this part of his Memorial, we see the presence of those liberal economic principles which later were so to the fore in his political writings. The objections and answers are:

1. There would not be enough wood for fuel, especially now when wood economy is enforced.

Answer: There are abundant woods around the present

saltworks and, moreover, they can use the waste wood of the


2. Being near the border, the works would be subject to enemy attacks.

Answer: This could be guarded against by placing the works

where their approaches could be guarded.

3. Our shippers would lose the present profit they get from carrying salt from foreign parts, and so business would suffer.

Note: This objection from powerful interests was probably the most potent in destroying Polhem's plans, for the salt trade, especially with Portugal, was an important one. (Person. Tids., pp. 92-93; Robinson, p. 146)

Answer: Salt is often brought to us by foreign ships, and

in any case, payment must be made in specie which should be

kept in the country. Moreover, the country cannot truly aid

business by injuring itself.

4. The establishment of saltworks would lower the streams and decrease the fresh water supply.

Answer: They need not be situated at streams.

5. The summer in Sweden is too uncertain.

Answer: But plenty of salt can be made when the weather is

dry and hot.

6. The matter should be proved before being approved.

Answer: Saltmaking is already proved at Uddevalla and

Stromstad, despite the faulty processes of making.

He concludes by stating his willingness to submit, plans for improved graduating works and salt pans.* (LM. p. 140)

* In the same MS. volume in Linkoping is a copy of this Memorial, but not in Swedenborg's hand. (It was Polhem who presented the Memorial on Salt. The present Memorial was perhaps for reserve.) (Doc. 1:287; Stroh 2:82)



We might add that at the end of the paper on which this Memorial is written, Swedenborg has entered a note of the subjects on which Elfvius, Vallerius and Roberg might write for the Daedalus. Alas, he never succeeded in getting their contributions. His intention in making the note was probably to write to Eric Benzelius asking him to get one or other of these professors to contribute an article for Daedalus VI, the make-up of which he seems to have intended to leave in Benzelius's hands. (OQ. 1: 273 = LM. p .158; Phot. 1: 77)

Both as to the saltworks and as to the canal building, Swedenborg is optimistic. Both projects, he writes on March 24, 1717, "are in a good way," and he thinks they will win the royal authorization. (OQ. 1:268 = LM. p. 149)

Nor does he remit his efforts to secure the royal approbation of an astronomical observatory. He sends a "Project" for the institution of such an observatory to deputy Councillor Fahlstrom, a military captain who was with the King in the Kalabalika, and was closely attached to his person in Lund; and he supposes "that his Majesty will approve it, and will also send to Upsala to present a plan for establishing a society," and this probably before the end of May. (OQ. 1; p. 268 = LM. p. 149)

A week later, however, he begins to entertain some doubt. On April 4, 1717, he writes:

       "I wonder what decision has been come to in respect to

what has been laid before his Majesty concerning the

Astronomical Observatory, inland navigation, and the brinery

. . . the present time seems untimely for all good

proposals." (Ibid. 271 = p. 152)

About a week after his arrival in Stockholm, Polhem's two daughters, "Maja and Mensa" (Maria, aged 19, and Emerentia. 14) came to the city on a visit and brought him from their father a continuation of the article in no. IV of the Daedalus, on the Resistance of Mediums. Of these draft continuations, Polhem writes in his accompanying letter:

"I did not afterwards give myself the time to read through

them, and therefore, the sense rather than the words is to be

observed. Should Herr Vice-President Hierne find pleasure in

the clean copy and so approval, it may be printed; but if any

objection is made which demands more exact explanation, it

had best remain until the whole is connected together."
A few days later he writes that it was not his intention to have the second Part printed at this time, "but that something can be extracted from it in illustration of the former part." (OQ. 1:269, 270 = LM. pp. 150, 152)

Whether Swedenborg did any work on preparing this continuation for the press is not known. Swedenborg added to his advertisement of Daedalus Hyperboreus V, which will be mentioned presently, the following:

"There is also, by Councillor of Commerce Mr. Polheim, a

little commencement to a Geometrical, Arithmetic and

Mechanical Course, called Wishetens andra Grundwahl til

Ungdoms prydnad which came out in Upsala and is sold there."

(ACSD 135A)

It seems that the Stockholm copies had all been sold, and this encouraged Swedenborg to contemplate the possibility of continuing the printing:

"I wonder if it is sold out in Upsala," he writes on April

4th, 1717, "which I should like to know in order to see

whether a continuation is justified. Here it is sold for 5

styfvers; perhaps I shall get back 1-1/2." (OQ. l:271 = LM.

p. 153)



As we have already noted, the work was never continued, though perhaps from other than financial reasons.

We might note here also an interesting observation made by Polhem in his letter, that suggests the familiar teaching about the spiritual genius of the Swedes. He greatly approves of having Benzelius write a life of Stiernhielm for the Daedalus, and suggests that some poems be prefixed to it,

"to the honor both of Sweden and of the person whom the

subject matter seems to serve. In the degree that the sun

gives to Sweden short and cold days," he continues, "in that

degree are they longer and more lovely in summer; so that in

this respect southerners have nothing to boast of when the

year is up. So likewise also, though Sweden nourishes the

most stupid people which other nations just despise, yet, on

the other hand, there are there lively geniuses who would

surpass and teach other nations; though these two extremes

together constitute no more than the average in other

places." (Confer Robinson, An Account of Sweden, p. 46

seq.) (OQ. 1:269 = LM. p. 151)

Meanwhile, Benzelius gratified his brother-in-law by pushing the printing of Daedalus V, and he was so far successful that it was actually on the market by the first week in April. On the 4th of that month, Swedenborg writes to Upsala "for twenty copies on the fine paper, and some of the other kind, since I must complete theirs with the same paper as they had before, both here and in Lund." (OQ. 1:270 = LM. p. 152)

No. V was the most pretentious of all the six issues of the Daedalus Hyperboreus. It consisted of 40 pages (Swedish and Latin translation facing each other) and 1 double copperplate. It was provided with a separate title-page as befitted a journal almost under the auspices of the King.

       It was on the appearance of this number that Swedenborg proposes to take a definite step to increase the sale of the journal, and also to protect its purchasers from the exactions of the booksellers. On April 4th, he writes to

"I think I would rather hold to a certain selling agent for

them, and give him a definite compensation, since the

booksellers are unreasonable in setting a price on them and

so they make little advance; yet the price paid me is 2

styvers less than that which was agreed on," etc. (OQ. 1:

271 = LM. p .153)

Nominally, no. V was advertised in the Stocholmiska Kundgiorelser of April 2d, but actually the advertised contents were those of no. IV. After reciting these contents, the advertisement then continues:

       "The work for the whole year is sold for 32 styvers by

the bookseller on Nygatan and in Upsala" -

from which it appears that the price of each number was 8 styvers (1/4 of a daler s.m., or nearly 3 dal.k.m.) (ACSD 135A)

The first article in this number does not lack an element of comicality. In the Swedish it is called Polhem's ingenious tap," and in the Latin, his "ingeniously made pump whereby the drawings from the barrel can be observed." Swedenborg opens it as follows:



       "Here is presented a new invention of a tap which is

well known both for its ingenuity and for its merits; and it

has already been used by many with pleasure and advantage.

Its merits consist principally in this, that it puts a check

on the greed of some maid- and menservants who, when the

opportunity arises, tap the keg as much for the advantage of

themselves and their friends as for that of their mistress,

making themselves glad and merry at the expense of their

master. . . The present machine will serve to check all such

peculation and abuse, setting against it a lock and bar, as

it were. For when the house mistress wishes to place her key

and give it into the hands of the butler, she can rest calm,

being assured that no water will run by the mill while the

miller's wife is sleeping; for if it should happen, the

vessel would at once carry the mark of it. From which it can

be concluded that its use is as great as its ingenuity, and

its ingenuity as great as its use; though, doubtless it will

not be liked by the lower classes. Its outer shape is already

known by a large number of persons, but since the mechanism

is concealed and lies inside, one will now open it up and set

forth its parts, both in combination and separately, and show

the hiding place of this mechanical wine- saver which checks

the pleasure and desire of the servant folk."

Then follows the description of the tap itself, which is

fully illustrated in the accompanying plate. This tap was

manufactured at Stiernsund, and attention is called to the

fact that keys also are made there, and among them a key "on

which one can see whether the door has been closed or not, so

that the mistress need no longer take the trouble to look

after her servants' faithfulness, save merely from the key."

One of these taps at Stiernsund, according to tradition, was

invented by Polhem when he discovered that when he wished

ale, his maid's lover happened to be equally thirsty at the

same time. This he found by the maid's reporting the barrel

empty when, according to Polhem's calculation, ale should yet

be left. (Daed. Hyper., p. 112; Stroh l: p. 63)

The second article of Daedalus V consists of several tables compiled by Swedenborg himself, to show the quantity of liquid contents in cubes, cylinders and spheres, and continues as a general treatment on the subject of stereometry, with the required mathematical operations and an analysis and explanation of them. The first draft of these calculations is preserved at Linkoping, and consists of 2 folio pages entitled "Stereometric Proportions and Stereometric Rules." It includes also the specific gravity of metals with water as the standard. (Phot. 1:100-1)

The matter of getting the plate made to illustrate the article on Polhem's tap gave Swedenborg considerable trouble. He had contemplated printing this article in the third number of the Daedalus, and had asked Prof. Roberg to execute a copperplate to illustrate it. But on April 2d, 1716, Benzelius writes him that Doctor Roberg, in case he were willing to draw this tap, "would have to open one, and here there is no one who will allow his tap to be destroyed." Such was the practical and ever-needed use of this cunning mechanism that the unwillingness to sacrifice it on the altar of science continued, and finally, when the tap must be drawn for Daedalus V, Swedenborg writes:



"As to the engraving of the tap, I know not how to provide

for it . . .

Could Dr. Roberg, in some pleasant and engaging

way, be invited to interest himself in the matter, this would

be the best way to do it, especially since some minute

details are involved which Mons. Aveln will not be able to

deal with. For the rest, if it should be necessary to examine

the tap itself, it lies in the bureau in the room which I

occupied, in one of the top drawers, which also should be

given to Doctor Roberg if he took charge of the matter."

(OQ. 1: 248, 266; = LM. pp. 98, 144)

Another difficulty which Swedenborg encountered and which might be mentioned here was the lack of complete sets of types in the print shops. Swedenborg notes the need of a sign for division, and wonders whether the print shop has such a sign. In the end, the sign was made by the letter "1" laid on its side with two period signs set above it and two below it. The same and other clumsy contrivances were adopted when Swedenborg's Algebra was printed in Skara a year or two later. (OQ. 1:267 = LM. p. 147)

Before leaving Stockholm, Swedenborg saw through the press another little work which probably he had written or, at any rate, prepared for, during his brief stay at Polhem's home. Its Swedish title (translated) reads: "A Relation concerning Stiernsund's Tin plated ware, the use of it, and the tin plating, Stockholm, 1717." It does not have the author's name, but in the Stockholm Royal Library copy is an annotation by Librarian Stahl "af Swedenborg." It is also attributed to Swedenborg in the earliest catalogues. (Doc. 3: 889)

       This work is somewhat in the nature of an advertisement,

intended to show housewives how they should use the tinplated

spoons, plates, etc., made at Stiernsund, and how to replate

them in case the tinning wears off. And as an advertisement

it came out quite appropriately as a supplement to the

Stockholm newspaper Stockholmiska Kundgiorelser - though

this was like the tail wagging the dog. The appearance of

this supplement was undoubtedly due to Polhem's suggestion,

and it is of interest to note that in the beginning of the

Collegium Curiosorum, Polhem had the idea of printing the

papers or transactions of the Collegium as weekly supplements

to the Stockholm paper Ordinarie Stockholmiska

Posttidingar. (Bring, Polhem, p. 74)

       It may also be noted that when Polhem had visited the

King in December 1716, he had brought with him a set of his

iron dishes, plates, spoons, etc., covered with tin. They

were tinned by an ingenious hydraulic machine invented by

Polhem. "The King thought so much of these tin goods," says

the traveler Mottraye, "that he banished from his table and

room everything of silver, and would have no other dishes,

plates, spoons, salt cellars, candlesticks, etc., than those

from this manufactory or, better said, aquafactory." The King

also carried these goods with him on his Norwegian Campaign.

This was in signal contrast to the lavishness allowed Goertz.

(Mottraye p. 176; Bring, Polhem p. 51; Fryx. 29: 90)

       It was doubtless partly because of this royal favor that

it was suggested to Polhem to spread the use of his tin

goods; moreover, his manufactures were receiving much

opposition from tinsmiths and others. In addition to printing

its appendix, the Stockholmiska Posttidingar printed the

following editorial notice: (Underrat. Pref. 1923)



       "Since it is already well known everywhere what general

use is served by the iron implements which are made at

Stiernsund and carried on by the ingenious machines which

have been set up, one has therefore set up for the pleasure

and at the same time for the use of the kind reader, on the

tin working at Stiernsund [etc.] which follows herewith on

half an ark." (ACSD 139A)

Swedenborg commences his paper by noting that the tinplated wares made at Stiernsund require more careful attention to keep them clean than in the case of tinware. They must be washed and dried after every meal, for otherwise the salt in the food will in time eat into the tin and cause rust. When the tin is worn off, he adds, the goods may be exchanged for new goods for one-third of the selling price; thus, for three dozen worn out, one dozen new ones are given free, or they will be returned for l ore s.m. per plate. On the other hand, they can be used after the tin has worn off, even for fifty years, provided they are scoured after every meal.

As a final paragraph, he adds:

       "It has been noticed that if children who are afflicted

with worms eat food that has been standing over night in

untinned iron vessels, especially sour food, the worms are

thereby destroyed. This is left to be tried out by other


It seems also that during his stay in Stockholm, Swedenborg wrote out his first draft of "A New Theory concerning the Stoppage of the Earth," which, in 1719, he published under the title, "The Going and Stoppage of the Earth and Planets." At any rate, in a letter dated Stockholm, April 4, 1717, after speaking of the printing of Daedalus V. he writes: "I ought to be able to follow with the theory of the earth which I mentioned in my last." (OQ. 1:270 = LM. p. 152)

We give a brief view of this work, though its contents will be considered more fully later when we come to the printed book. It may be premised, however, that it was when Swedenborg was in England that his mind seemed to have been turned more particularly to a "Theory of the Earth." In England, Burnet [d. 1715], the Master of Charterhouse, had published a Theoria Telluris - a somewhat fanciful one which Flamsteed said he could demolish on a single sheet of paper, and which had caused considerable discussion. Doctor Woodward also has a theory of the earth and the flood; and it is not improbable that Swedenborg discussed the matter with both authors, and certainly he studied Burnet's book, for among his MSS. are found extracts from it. (D. of NB. s.v. Burnet; Cod. 86: 165-69)

And now Swedenborg essays his own Theoria Telluris - a theory of the stoppage of the earth.

Briefly, the theory is that since all finite things come to

an end, the same must be true of the earth. Swedenborg then

argues that the motion of the earth is becoming slower; at

first, its diurnal motion was so rapid that there was a

perpetual spring; otherwise there could have been no

creation; but not so now. Consequently, paradise and the long

age of the ancients was then possible. In this connection, he

denies the existence of pre-adamites. He then discusses the

physical cause of the flood and, incidentally, opposes the

theory of "a good man in England" [meaning Burnet] who hold

that steam burst the earth and then the waters rushed in.

(OQ. 3: 271, 274, 276)



Swedenborg holds that before the flood, the earth was round, and in its motion offered little resistance to the air; but with the flood came mountains which offer much resistance. Hence, chapter 14 (the last) is headed: "The earth would have lasted 18,212 years had there been no flood."

That this conclusion is reached mathematically is seen from the MS., but how, does not appear since the work stops just at this point.

It may here be remarked that while Swedenborg was a skilled mathematician, his imagination, his dwelling on the idea, was too strong to allow him of always giving the exclusive attention to mathematics which is so necessary to exactness. This is the reason why, both in his Principia and also in his argument with other mathematicians, his mathematical claims were not always defensible. In Emanuel Swedenborg sasom Matematiker, Gustaf Enestrom (Stockholm 1890), who is the only author to study Swedenborg purely as a mathematician, says how totally unknown Swedenborg was and is to the world of mathematics. He adds:

"Swedenborg's purely mathematical contributions to Daedalus

Hyperboreus bear witness of a remarkable many-sidedness for

Swedish contemporary conditions, and a certain cleverness in

the use of them, but do not contain anything particularly new

or valuable from a mathematical point of view. One also finds

here one or two attempts of his in free hand, to construct

statements which, on closer investigation, are not found to

be mathematically tenable, and to come out with mathematical

philosophical speculations which lead away from actual exact

investigations instead of simplifying them."

Before leaving Stockholm, Swedenborg, on Saturday April 6th, presented himself at the Bergskollegium on Mynt Torget, and after taking the oath "with his hand on the Bible," took his seat in the Collegium as its youngest Assessor, and so commenced that labor which, with some considerable interruptions, was not finally to be laid down for thirty years. His Warrant was of course recognized, and he signed the letters of the Collegium as one of its Assessors. (ACSD 139, 225A)

At this time, the famous physician Urban Hjarne was the Vice-president of the Bergskollegium, and it may be presumed that Swedenborg now met him for the first time.

Swedenborg attended daily at the Bergskollegium up to and including Wednesday, April 17th, when he received leave of absence "to go in company with Councillor of Commerce Polhem to Karlskrona and Skane." He left Stockholm on the same day for a visit during Easter (April 21st) to his brother-in-law at Upsala, whom he afterwards accompanied to the latter's country estate Ribbenbeck, some miles due east of Upsala. For some unknown reason, he left Ribbenbeck hastily and without taking leave - probably the opportunity of transportation - and he took the way to Stiernsund where he visited Polhem, and the two then proceeded to Karlskrona to superintend the building of the dry dock and the great dam. Swedenborg's work on the former



seems mainly to overlook the building of the dam which was to prepare the way for the blasting; but, in any case, his work like Polhem's was that of a consulting and advising engineer on whom the planning of that work devolved; but its actual execution was under the direction of the naval ship-builder Scheldon. (OQ. 1:270, 269 = LM. pp. 152, 151; ACSD 140; Doc.1:284; Fr. det Forna. p. 133)

* For a description of this dam, see Swedenborg's "New Plan for constructing Docks and Moles, (Amsterdam 1721).

From Karlskrona they, at any rate, Swedenborg proceeded to Lund, where they arrived on May 22nd. Here Swedenborg lost no time in presenting the fifth or Latin-Swedish number of the Daedalus "to his Majesty, who," he writes, was pleased with it, and even more." (OQ. 1:272 = LM. p. 157)

During this visit, he also tried to make some progress as to the Observatory. He tried to interest Secretary Cederholm but without success because he did not have a formal letter from the Upsala "Society." Polhem would not stir in the matter; in fact, he "adopted the attitude of not bothering himself about anything save what concerns himself," and naturally so when he found so many things ascribed to him of which he knew nothing at all.

On June 11th, Polhem's report of the canal investigations was laid before the King in a document which was written in Swedenborg's hand and possibly was his work, but was signed "C. P." (ACSD 142)

In this report, three large locks are proposed, two at Trollhattan and one at Carlsgraf.* For the sake of economy and expedition, the sides always under water were to be of wood, and those above, of wood faced with stone slabs from Kinnekulla. Thus faced, they would probably last a hundred years,       (Bring, Troll. KH, p. 323)

* The present canal has 11 locks at Trollhattan. 2 or 3 sluices at Trollhattan were planned by Polhem to be so deep that part of each lock would be a tunnel                                                                (Bring, Troll. KH., pp. 63, 60).

       Each of the three sluices, it was estimated, would cost

between ten and twenty thousand dal. s.m. In addition, extra

expenses would be incurred in the dredging of a part of the

river; which it was proposed to have done by the help of

Russian prisoners or soldiers who would receive less pay;

also in the erection of a temporary dam and in the

compensation to mill owners for the temporary losses incurred

before they could transfer their mills to the new sluices.

Moreover, the old dams at Ed would require to be improved

before through navigation can be secured. The whole work

would cost at least 100,000 dal.s.m., "whether more or less,

one cannot rightly say."

       "This then is a short memo on navigation between Wenner

and Goth," ends Polhem's report. "As soon as it comes to some

resolution, I will present a plan for the rest of the work

between Wenner and Hielmar."

       In an autograph P.S. to this very informal report,

moreover, Polhem proposed that the water power at Vennersborg

be used by the building there of works for the making of

nails, iron sheets, salt, dams for which could be put in at

little cost while the river bed was dry for the building of

the great sluices.



       It will be remembered that on the preceding January 31st

(see p. 138 above), the King had issued an open letter for

the establishing of a private sluice guild to which certain

valuable privileges would be given. Nothing came of this, and

in the report we are now considering, Polhem makes a new

proposal for the financing of the canal work, namely, that a

certain capital sum be put up by private persons for the

whole work, under the guarantee of ten per cent from the day

of cash subscription until the work was finished; and then

the King would grant privileges which would ensure a return

of at least ten per cent.

       Polhem was optimistic as to the success of this plan,

and as for himself, he was content with "some little shares"

in payment of his valuable services.

       The document closes with an estimate of twenty per cent

profit for the owners of the canal shares.

This plan was approved by the King, and a few days later (June 13th), a general announcement was made authorizing the formation of a private sluice company with one thousand shares, and promising to such a company a guarantee of Privileges and approval of a profit of at least twenty per cent. (Troll.K.H. p. 325)

A similar plan, namely, the authorizing of a private company, was contemplated for the proposed salt works, and Swedenborg viewed both projects with great hopes.

"The brinery goes," he writes in June, "and to it his Majesty

has resolved to grant great and powerful privileges which

will probably make many persons eager to venture their means

in it; and should interested persons be lacking in other

places, Lund with its Deputy Councillor should contribute

most of the money. The establishment of sluice works between

Gothenburg and Wennersborg is also in a good way." (OQ.

1:272 = LM. p. 157)

A day or two after the above was written, the salt privileges were formally granted by the King.

The report made by Polhem, as a result of his and Swedenborg'sinvestigations, had been specifically for the establishment of salt works on Gullmarsfjord which could easily be defended from the enemy and in addition contained very good salt water. Polhem proposed the institution of some new graduating works which he had invented, and also industries to be combined with the brineries. He had, moreover, invented new methods of refining whereby the salt could be made equal to the foreign salt. (Bring, Polhem, p. 53)

The whole plan was approved, and on June 26, 1717, while Swedenborg and Polhem were still at Lund, the latter was given the monopoly of saltmaking. A company was to be formed of 200,000 shares at 1 mark s.m. All applications for shares were to be made to Polhem before September 1st of that year. Various inducements were offered to subscribers, including



twenty years' freedom from taxes and then freedom from half of the taxes; no other salt company would be allowed to operate; the salt workers would not be subject to military conscription, and the shareholders were free to sell their shares for their full value and not at par. This royal letter was printed as an advertisement in the Stockholmiska Kundjiorelser for August 6th, with the following editorial introduction, characteristic of the times: (OQ. 1:273 = LM. p. 158)

       "Since Councillor of Commerce Christopher Polhem has

humbly set forth to his Majesty . . . that saltboileries

could be established in this land with advantage, if some

persons in the same industry would take an interest in

conjunction with Mr. Polhem, and will put in their money, and

if the undertaking should be honored with certain privileges

and advantages: therefore, his Royal Majesty has graciously

granted his subject certain privileges which are here printed

under the title his Royal Majesty's Open gracious Letter

concerning the institution of salt boiling works; dated Lund,

June 26th, 1717." (ACSD 145A)

It appears from this that it was expected that all existing

brineries would buy shares in the new company - as, indeed,

they would be forced to if no other salt company was allowed

to operate.

Swedenborg was pleased, though not excessively so. On the same day that the monopoly was granted, he wrote:

       "The salt company's privileges have been signed. They

are fairly good, to wit, that they . . . have freedom to

purchase whatever wood is found available, to choose what

place they will, to get twenty years' freedom from all taxes,

and afterwards, for all time, never to be liable for more

than one-half of the dutyor tax which foreign salt pays.

After the company has been formed, which consists of 200,000

shares, at 1 mark s. sm. a share, no other company will be

permitted. . . For the rest, it promises many other

advantages whenever required. If any one in Upsala wishes to

subscribe, he can do it through Assessor Cameen in Stockholm.

. . We have already put out from thirty to forty thousand

shares in this city. According to all appearances, it will be

filled within the last date for subscription [end of

September]. The subscriptions will amount to 50,000 [dalers]

s.m." (OQ. 1: 273 = LM. p. 158)

Swedenborg himself seems to have taken a more or less active part in the promotion of the work by the sale of shares. At any rate, we learn from a contemporary diarist that Nils Reuterhjelm, one of Charles XII's war counsellors,

"together with Swedenborg and Polhem, was down in Skane and

Bohuslahn to enlist the people for the saltwork which it was

proposed to set up in Bohus"; Reuterhjelm adds: "Polhem is

going to make a barge with a pipe to fetch the saltiest water

up from the bottom, to institute graduating works, etc., and

has promised to make a salt as good as they wished, and

whatever kind they desired. He also made different trials

with one salt water, so that no one had reason for blame. He

would also get the best salt at Bohus for five daler. But

there were some who thought that it was not in agreement with

their interests, and who represented that commerce would

suffer by it, as though the kingdom is to adjust itself to

commerce; and a lot of other bagatelles of a like



nature, which yet Polhem had shown the unreasonableness of

with full proof. But here no reason that any may be brought

forward is of avail. So it goes. When any useful work is to

be under taken, so some one's mere caprices and interests

which destroy the general interest so that the whole kingdom

must suffer on their account."       (Person. Tids. p. 92)

There seemed at first a real prospect of success for the undertaking, and in the Stockholm newspaper of September 24th, as a last call for subscriptions prior to October 1st, it is announced, that since this salt company, with its assembled capital, will commence this autumn, all who wish to take part in it can give in their names to Councillor Polhem in Karlskrona for as many shares as they desire; shareholders or their representatives would have a voice in the management, or Polhem would undertake to sell salt to them at the works for 2 dal. s.m.                                                                                     (ACSD 146A)

       Evidently, this was a last effort to arouse a somewhat

dormant interest, and perhaps a last effort against the

active antagonism of the saltmakers and others. It failed.

The "30 to 40 thousand shares" sold in Lund were merely

revocable applications. In fact, the company was not even

established. One great trouble was the demand that shares be

paid for in cash, and cash was too scarce or too desirable;

the other was secret opposition, especially by shipowners and

importers. See ACSD 252A. (Bring, Polhem, p. 54; Samml.v.

Nat.u. Med. Art.IV p. 104)

       Polhem had entertained high hopes of wide support, but

alas, on December 19th he writes: "The shareholders here in

Karlskrona ask to be allowed to pay in tokens, or else to be

struck off the list of subscribers. If all the others do the

same thing, then there will be a beginning such as a large

number of persons desire - those, namely, who are outside the

company. God knows," he adds, "what fearful fate Sweden

experiences with all her useful undertakings. I think she is

bewitched on all sides, for neither will nor science avails

to meet all the disasters which come upon her in such

abundance." (Bring, Polhem. p. 54)

Meanwhile, Swedenborg had a special Memorial of his own which he presented to the King on June 11th, the same day as the Canal Report, and presumably together with it. (ACSD 142A)

Swedenborg here asks for the following ordinances, in order that manufacturers in Sweden may look for profit: (LM. p. 155)

1. That the right to become master workers shall not be confined by the guilds but shall be open to all, especially if working with their own materials.

2. And, that the number of these workmen may increase, "which will result in the cheapness of their goods, and the cheapness of the goods in larger sales, and larger sales in profit and development for the country."

No workmen will be tolerated but those who can be reckoned as masters, journeymen or apprentices. Those who will not support journeymen and apprentices in their workshop, who could do the coarser work cheaper "than the master himself who must support wife and children," must work as journeymen under another master, or must work at the same trade in the army.



3. That masters outside the guild come under the civil law.

4. These judges shall be responsible for the condition of the shops, and the master shall obtain advancement according to his encouragement of manufactory.

5. All new shops which do not belong to the guild shall enjoy twenty years' freedom from all import and export tons, but only for masters who employ at least three or four persons; the

6. Rank of the masters to be according to the number of their workmen, and not according to age.

7. Contracts with apprentices must be written, witnessed and faithfully kept.

8. If a workman goes to foreign lands, he must give a guarantee that he will return in a given time.

9. All disputes between masters and workmen to be judged according to the contract, the circumstances, reason and rules which can be applied.

During the six weeks of Swedenborg's stay in Lund, he was occupied with literary work. Here perhaps he worked on his Theoria Telluris. Here also and likewise in Stockholm, he met many persons who were interested in his Daedalus, and among them those who desired to have a Swedish work on Algebra - which was the inspiring motive that led him a few months later to write and publish his Regel konst. (OQ. 1:276 = LM. p. 169)

But what seems mainly to have occupied him was the writing out of that new system of reckoning which he had already discussed with the King on several occasions during his previous visit in Lurid (see p. 137s above).

       "For the rest," he writes in a letter of June 26th, "I

have had to busy myself with a new system of numbering which

his Majesty has invented, namely, to let the numbering go on

to 64 before it turns, in the same way that it turns at 10

according to the customary numeration. He has himself

dictated for it new characters, new names, etc. He has

written and made many changes with his own hand. . . The

system of numbering is difficult in multiplication, etc., but

has its use and weight in solving equations, and in the

extraction of square, cube, and biquadrate roots. . . His

Majesty has powerful perception." (Ibid. 272 = LM. p.


During this visit, he "got to talk with his Majesty no more than two times, and that was all about playful matters in Mathesis, puzzles in Algebra, etc. For the Herr Councillor of Commerce's sake, I have sought with all diligence not to get this grace more often." From which it would appear that some slight jealousy had been felt by Polhem, who had not been altogether successful in his many applications. In a letter of December, 1717, Swedenborg writes that Polhem had "put forward twenty things, but got only the decision in respect to the salt works." Even the project for the canal work was left in a nebulous state. (Ibid. 274 = LM. p. 164)

Swedenborg left Lund in the first days of July (July 4th) and traveled through Skane, Halland and Bohuslan to Stromstad, but now with the definite purpose of looking out for suitable sites for the establishment of salt works by the projected company. Throughout this journey he was on the alert for all that might be of use to his country. Thus, when going to Governor Hardz' estate in Gralle, he inquired of a peasant who was with him as to salt



or hot or other springs, and learned that there was a hot spring in the neighborhood, but he was unable to follow the matter up. (OQ. 1:273, 277 = LM. pp. 159, 171; Doc. 1:291)

Arriving at Brunsbo, he found a condition that at once excited his commercial as well as his mechanical interest - namely, a falling off in the supply of printing paper - a commodity which was almost the breath of life to his father, and was almost as equally necessary to himself. The cause was naturally the falling off in imports due to the war. With his intimate knowledge of science and of the country, the manufacture of paper in Sweden came at once to Swedenborg as the remedy. He therefore entered into an arrangement with his father and the widow of General Lars Hjarta (1648-1711), that the three of them, should form a stock company for the operation of a paper mill to be built at a waterfall on the River Mossan on the Bonde estate. With this in view, at the end of August Swedberg drew up a memorial to the King whom he had so recently left, asking for privileges as follows: (LM. p. 160; ACSD 147)

After stating the present need of paper mills, he goes on to

say that "there are certain interested parties who, with

myself, are minded to establish the above works in one or two

places," if his Majesty would be pleased to grant them:

(LM. p. 161; ACSD 146)

1. The right to build mills "by free waterfalls provided this be done without injury to existing rights.

2. That there be undisturbed possession of them.

3. That they have a few years exemption from taxation, as per custom with new works.

4. That the workmen, who are hard to get and must sometimes be got from abroad, be not subject to conscription, as is usual in such cases.

5. That, since the difficulty of getting raw materials has hitherto been the chief hindrance to the manufacture, the King should allow the peasants to pay a small part of their taxes in rags and old clothes, delivering the latter to the factory and receiving a receipt to be accepted in payment of taxes and redeemed by the manufacturer.

6. Further to induce farmers to sell rags, that the company be empowered to exchange useful goods for rags.

This Memorial was received in Lund on September 1st, but on November 2nd, Bishop Swedberg felt under the necessity of writing to the King and reminding him of the matter. "Secretary Cederholm" - he refers, of course, to his friend with whom Swedenborg had been a fellow lodger - "knows about this matter." The letter is officially stamped "granted," but despite this, the project seems never to have been put into operation - at which one ought not to be surprised - for up to 1820, the only paper made in Sweden was made by a small works in Upsala. (Familjebok, 20: 1495)



Swedenborg was, of course, not free to do       as he pleased; after his examination of sites for the proposed salt works had led him to Uddevalla and Stromstad, with a brief visit home, he must return to Karlskrona to assist Polhem, who had remained there, in the construction of the great dam which was to prepare for the blasting of the dry dock, and of the lesser dam which was to provide water power on the Lyckeby River nearby. (OQ. 1: 273 = LM. p. 159)

The work on the great dock was not going "altogether according to plan," Swedenborg writes, "yet one does not doubt but that what is aimed at will finally be attained - though with this there is some petty complaint." These words were written in Brunsbo where Swedenborg went for the Christmas holidays. He did not again oversee the work at Karlskrona. Presumably, Polhem and he had finished, and what remained was to carry out the plan. (OQ. 1: 377 = LM. p. 172)

       The work that had been thus far in hand was the building

of a great retaining dam. Swedenborg's work seems to have

been to direct the soundings and make the calculations, etc.,

required for this dam. The latter was over 60 feet long with

a maximum height of 36 feet. It was built upon posts, its

power part being exactly adapted to the bottom of the ocean,

as ascertained by "a pendulum with an iron ball," and

attached but movable boards and skins were so arranged that

they could be drawn up or let down from above after the dam

had been sunk. (Bring, Pol. pp. 218-9; Chem. pp. 234.


       September 17th was the day fixed for the sinking of this

great dam. For this purpose, it was attached by ropes to

masts stationed on the land. The posts on which it had been

built were then cut away and stones were loaded into it in

receptacles duly provided. Swedenborg and the others watched

carefully to see the result. For the first few days, there

was disappointment. The pumping had no effect on the water,

even after the manipulations of the loose boards and hides;

but as the sand and other matter accumulated against the dam,

the water was more and more held back. Still, there was some

complaint and dissatisfaction even with the settling of sand

against the dam, unexpected leaks developed, and it required

the labor of eleven months and of many men before, in August

1718, the space for the blasting and for the building of the

lock gates was laid bare. Polhem was somewhat bitter at the

criticisms directed against his work, and plainly hinted that

the defects in the dam ware due not to the plan but to undue

economy in carrying it out. (Bring, Polhem pp. 51, 219; Chem.

pp. 234; LM. p. 162)

       The first ship did not enter the new dock until

September 1724 when the Konung Carl, the biggest ship of the

navy, with a draught of 23 feet, was dry-docked, but already

in 1721, Swedenborg was able to write confidently of its

success - and of its invaluable use and economy. (Bring.

Polhem p. 219; Chem. p. 35)

It is perhaps to this period that we can ascribe the few notes on a "Siphonic Machine" which are preserved among the Linkoping MSS., and which perhaps were written with a view to the contemplated work of pumping out the water behind the Karlskrona dam; but see above, p. 67. Also his description of a crane "whereby one can lift up a thirty-two pound cannon." (Phot. 1:20, 102-4; Hyde, n. 95)



In a long document in Swedenborg's hand which he sent to Eric Benzelius (perhaps for the Daedalus VI) and which perhaps he copied on his return to Brunsbo in the beginning of the following year (1718), is described a curious meeting which Polhem had "last year," that is to say, just at the time of which we are now speaking, with some strangers in Karlskrona, one of whom showed him a highly confidential document which dealt with the very subject on which his thought and attention had so long been dwelling, namely, the development and extension of Sweden's manufactures and commerce. (Phot. 1:7)

       This document is entitled "Copy of an Instruction and

Authorization which was acquired by means of an incident set

forth in the Introduction." Then follows this Introduction

which is signed "Ch. P." This incident is there described as


       He was at a coffeehouse in Karlskrona, and on one

particular occasion he got into conversation with some

strangers on the subject of the raising of the currency - a

subject which was evidently occupying his serious attention

at this time - and other public questions. The strangers

noticed from his conversation that he was well informed on

these subjects and also, to quote his own words, that he

"showed an inclination to everything that looked to the use

and advantage of the Fatherland."

       On the following day, one of the strangers gave him a

long paper to read. He was not allowed to see the beginning

or end of this paper, "and still less," he says, "was I

permitted to copy it." He then continues: "And since its

contents gave an inkling of several things worthy of

consideration which all people in general ought to know,

namely,) by what means and maxims a country can easily be

weakened in wealth and power by those who secretly suck from

it its juice and marrow, therefore I considered that it would

give all right-minded inhabitants of the kingdom particular

benefit and delight to have a copy of it, if not in respect

to its actual words and their order, at least in respect to

their meaning and content. This I have here desired to reveal

so far as memory allows me, in the hope that, if all should

not be exactly at one with the original itself and those to

whom it was known, especially as to those parts which do not

so especially concern our dear Fatherland, it will yet be

agreeable to those who love the welfare of their Fatherland

and who allow their hearts to be touched by its impoverished

condition, and this, so much the more because to its own

fatal misfortunes we must add still others, like stones added

to a burden." (Phot. 1: 8)

Then follows the copy itself. Were this really a copy of an actual document, the whole incident as described by Swedenborg would be inexplicable. For why should strangers, and spies at that, show such a document to a perfect stranger? and in a public place! And having gone so far, why should they conceal the "beginning and end of the document."

But the internal evidence furnished by the Introduction and "copy" indicates with sufficient clearness that the whole story is the fruit of an imaginative mind which chooses this dramatic way of setting forth in ironical vein, the deadly restrictions which Sweden herself was imposing on that development of her manufactures, trade and commerce which was so necessary to raise her from the low state into which she had been reduced, and to which Polhem, or it may be Swedenborg, so ardently and in so many ways had striven to contribute, by his fertile pen.



This is indicated not only by the sheer unlikelihood that Swedenborg would be shown a highly confidential and dangerous document in a public house and by perfect strangers, presumably spies, but also by his purported account of the contents of the document itself, which covers eleven folio pages of minute details, when yet, according to his own statement, he was allowed merely to read the document in a public coffeehouse, but not to copy it.

With this in view, we can readily understand why the document is presented in so impersonal a way, without beginning or end, that is to say, without any indication of its source.*

* In reading this document, it should be borne in mind that only one artisan was permitted to dwell in a town (Robinson, p. 51), and "that the trade of Sweden was mostly in foreign hands" (Ibid. p. 148).

The purported copy itself is headed: "Now follows the Instruction itself, the beginning and end whereof I did not get."

       "Above all things," are the opening words, "the holders

of our commission, wherever they reside, must give us a good

report of all that goes on there, and especially the

direction of the inclination of their King and foremost men."

(Phot. 1: 7)

       Their ordinances and proclamations "must be sent to us

at once." They must be carefully examined, and if found "to

run counter to our service," they are to be obstructed until

they can be counteracted; and to avoid delay, "all our

authorized agents wherever residing" have full authority of

action but must report for confirmation as soon as possible.

       "A certain sum of money which stands to our account" is

to be used for yearly pensions to all merchants' sons "of our

extraction," who can enter into positions where our

interests" are taken into account.       (Phot. 1: 9)

       All commissaries* are especially to see that the raw

materials of the country in which they are, come to us, while

our manufactures go to them, and also that no new

manufactures are set up, to make use of their own raw

material. For this, the following rules are laid down:

       * A commissary was an official who corresponds to our Consul.

1. As soon as we know what factories are to set up, we send in large quantities of such goods to be sold cheaply - even at a loss.

2. Contempt for the new factory must be disseminated.

3. Their trade must be hindered by all possible means, such as royal interests, state privileges, etc.

4. In particular; in the places where these new factories are to be established, custom officers must be persuaded to make difficulties in order to discourage the work. (Phot. 1:10)

5. Workmen should be aroused not to teach others lest their own wages be reduced; not to show the utmost they themselves can do, lest they be held to it when they grow older.

6. If a foreign master workman comes in, whether to work for



another or for himself, he must be told not to teach his trade to any of his children save one - the others to be, taught some other trade "at our expense." (Phot. 1:11)

7. Guilds must be supported in power, so as to make the term of apprenticeship longer and harder, and so discourage promising apprentices.

8. Apprentices also should be encouraged to move away and become masters - when they will not wish to return.

9. The needed raw material must be made as dear as possible.

10. That the workmen may be led to demand high wages, they must be oppressed with local difficulties.

11. They and their wives and children must be incited to vanity and pleasure and, if necessary, this must be commenced by money and by marriage with such women as fail not in pride, even if the dowry comes from our own purse.

12, Especially must newly arrived tailors be induced to bring in new fashions for which we will provide the material. [Confer Robinson, An Account of Sweden, p. 51] (Phot. 1:12)

Students going to foreign countries must have free credit so far as their home conditions allow, so that they have no need to practice economy or to give an account of their funds. This benefits us in two ways.
Those who have a vote in appointments, must observe the general rule never to vote for one who will make inroads on their own position; the weaker their intelligence, the better they are for us.
But if some one gets in who would injure us, then he is to be advanced at our expense in some remote district.
Our merchants and tradesmen who live in those places must be kept in good relations with us so as to feel that their interests are ours, and vice versa; and that their children and shop boys may imbibe this feeling from childhood.
Good apprentices who have served their time should be equipped
with our wares on credit, that they may learn to hate domestic goods.(Phot. 1:13)
When they have become heavily involved, native products in raw material must be bought up for us. But to do this to our advantage, no pains must be spared to secure a rise in the coinage whereby their wares will come to us in large quantity for little money.
Our merchants in those places must be careful not to raise their prices too soon after a rise in the currency, so that the natives may not do the same with their goods.
But to provide for any such rise, our merchants must send in long beforehand inferior goods but of the same appearance, etc., that they may be sold for the same price.
Everything should be so arranged that the King's income may be increased. It is none of our business if their King profits 20 or 30 Per cent by us, if we profit 100 per cent from their country.
In order that their silver coin, which the people love, may not be hoarded, we must work on the problem of how the coinage can be debased by mixing with copper, etc. The people will then not have enough confidence in it to hoard it up. Thus we will secure all the coin of the country and then need not fear its power in war. (Phot. 1:14)



It is of the greatest importance to us that we get their foremost men, especially dealers in raw material and their products, in debt to us, which is best done by credits, for which we will take the risks.

It must be arranged that their cities get no other privileges than free and unhindered trade whereby our sales can be advanced. (Phot. 1: 15)

But above all, a city must be prevented from being dependent on certain special manufactures - as with us. This must be prevented at all costs. Otherwise, we would suffer two losses in one place.

We must arrange to get our merchants settled and trading in their mining centers, so arranging it that by credits, etc., they may get the works and the old owners become workmen. Their wares will thus become cheaper for us, and we shall see how much the avaricious miners have appropriated. For this purpose, our merchants should secure all needful privileges.

All their business, which is not profitable to us, must be killed, e.g., if they make the same goods as we. The higher classes must be trained to despise native goods, even if this is prepared for by gifts on our part.

We must have a good understanding with all who can advance our interests, and, in case of mistakes, restitution must be made at once. (Phot. 1:16)

No opportunity should be neglected to have many officials advanced in the country; these are our best customers.

Those who control public purchases must be influenced to prefer our wares.

We must suppress by all means all propositions to improve the production in their own country of things they most need and with which we have been supplying them. Here the following rules apply:

       I [To encourage] all that can make their country poor.

       For this we have the following means:       (Phot. 1:17)

1. The people must be made extravagant, for which we will supply abundant material.

2. We must gradually prevent the country from manufacturing its own clothes and other necessaries by free advances of money, until they despise their own goods.

3. Our glittering wares should be in all markets so that parents will buy them for their children; the children will then brag of having foreign goods, and the home-made will be despised.

4. Continuous unsteadiness in ordinances and officials is well calculated to produce poverty, so that when the lowly are elevated and the noble debased, hatreds, jealousy, covetousness are the result, and one may be sure the kingdom cannot flourish.

5. As soon as young kings come to the throne, they are soon involved in war, and here we come to bribes. Then it is to our interest to milk the cow while two are quarrelling over her.*

* No. 5 is crossed off - perhaps from a feeling of loyalty to Charles XII.



6. In peace, we should try to prevent traveling to foreign countries to learn the new methods of war. (Phot. 1:18)

7. To impoverish the land, we should see that the farmers do not own the land they farm. In this way, the farms will receive more damage in ten years than could be repaired by the owners in twenty.

8. The public can best be burdened with new taxes by raising the coinage.

9. When the loose property of the people is such that it costs much to get and brings little at forced sale, one has a good means of impoverishing the country.

Such then is this remarkable document which, in general, may be presumed to give Swedenborg's view of the abuses so prevalent in Sweden, and to which he ascribed the great difficulties in pushing any of the proposals which he and Polhem had made for her advancement.

Swedenborg remained at his post in Karlskrona until September 17th

when the great dam was sunk. After this, he accompanied Polhem to Uddevalla and Wennersborg to see about the establishment of a brinery on Gullmar's Fjord, and to make investigations in connection with the carrying on of the canal project. Interest in the salt works does not seem to have come up to expectations; and now, in September, the Breslau Sammlung von Natur und Medicin Geschichten had come out with an article on the subject, to the effect that Polhem had received privileges to build a brinery at Uddevalla,* but was not very encouraging as to results. (Bring, Polhem p. 51; Samml. N.u.M. Gesch. pp. 103-4; Miss. Obs. p. 65)

* Printed "Uckewille."

The canal project was also languishing. No one bought the shares - if any were actually issued. About October 20th, Polhem wrote to the King proposing that one sluice be built at Karlsgraf at the King's expense, and until a favorable answer from the King, Swedenborg had nothing more to do.

He therefore returns home, and one of the first things he did was to ask Dr. Hesselius to inquire about the purported Hot Spring in Skane, and about December 1st, we find him in Brunsbo for the Christmas holidays. He found that his father had gone to Lund* to wait on the King, mainly on the Consistory's behalf, for the purpose of seeking some amelioration for the teachers and ministers of the Diocese whose tithes and compensation had been sequestered. On this visit he also held a disputation on his Schibboleth. Swedenborg was somewhat alarmed, since the Bishop had gone to wait on the King without permission, but he hoped that his office and good friends would secure his exoneration. And yet, according to Jesper Swedberg himself, he had been ordered by the King to appear in Lund and dispute his Schibboleth. (Doc. 1:291,156; OQ. 1:277, 274 = LM. pp. 171, 163; Tottie 2: 198)

* For Jesper Swedberg's experiences in Lund, see Doc. 1: 131, 157. He arrived in Lund Saturday November 30th (Starback, J. Svedberg, p. 11).

Swedenborg's active thought at this time, on the subject of commerce, would indicate that it was in the Fall of 1717 at Karlskrona, or in December



at Brunsbo, that he draw up a somewhat remarkable plan for the consolidation of the Swedish iron and tar industry into one stock company. Its opening words would seem to indicate that at first Swedenborg had contemplated a company to handle the whole of Sweden's manufactures:

"After closer consideration" he commences, "it seems that it would be difficult to bring all citizens with all their business under a single general company, especially under present circumstances. . . But the destruction of mining and manufacture in particular must inevitably come if some remedy be not soon had against enemy pressure. Could then the whole iron and tar industry within the kingdom be now given to a single company whose sole care should consist in depriving the foreign trade of the profit it has heretofore enjoyed, and still enjoys at this day, from the toil, sweat and labor of our poor iron miners who, like foreign slaves, work for their benefit, and themselves have hardly the necessaries of life, nay, and obtain work to their own injury and death." (Phot. 1:68 seq.)

As the remedy for this, Swedenborg proposes the formation of a company for the selling of all Swedish iron. By this means, not only will the foreigner lose his advantage but the finest iron can be kept for manufactory in the country, and both miner and merchant prosper.

Swedenborg then gives the laws which should govern such a company in order to avoid its becoming a private monopoly:

1-3. That all Swedes buy shares at 100 dal.s.m. a share, paying for them either in cash or, preferably, in iron and tar.

4-6. The shareholders to elect directors, each share having one vote.

7-8. The directors are to be salaried, and are to employ salaried servants "of whose honesty they can be assured."

9-10. Moreover, the directors must be absolutely honest, and allow the company to be ruined rather than use any chicanery or deceit.

11-12. The capital will be small at first, but it would be greatly aided if the King forbade the export of iron or tar for two years, save in ships provided with the company's pass.

13. At first it will be necessary to allow foreigners to ship out what they have in part paid for;* but in case they have purchased at unreasonable prices, the directors could force them either to pay a just price or to give back the goods and then buy them from the company.

* See Bihang till Riksdagen i Stockholm, p. 57: "Most of the iron found in Stockholm stands in English names" (Gortz to King, April 19, 1718).

14. The foreigner will be content with this when he finds that the company's pass is a sure safe conduct as regards Swedish man of war or privateers.

15. The directors to be subject to death if they give their pass to ill-meaning people.

Nothing came of this at the time, though it may be noted that the present Swedish Iron Office does serve now the use contemplated by Swedenborg, namely, the stabilizing of the industry.

Meanwhile, during his stay at Brunsbo, it became more and more evident to Swedenborg that selfishness and intrigue were threatening the establishment of the proposed salt company, the one definite thing Polhem has secured from



the King. On January 7th, he writes in a gloomy vein:

       "Something will come of the salt works if selfishness

does not rule too powerfully which - it is to be regretted -

is making some considerable beginning I ward it off as much

as I can. I am thinking of entirely withdrawing from having

any hand in the matter so that the blame may not come on me,

in case it should go awry and slowly. Meanwhile, I think it

will not stand on any good footing unless Councillor Polhem

is supported as much as he thought he would be. The salt may

indeed turn out to be tolerably good like the Luneburg salt,

quite serviceable for cooking purposes." (OQ. 1:276 = LM.

p. 166)

A week later he writes:

       "I hope to get along well with the brinery, if

selfishness does       not wish to have too strong a hand in

it." (Ibid. 277 = 171)

Swedenborg is not alone in this thought. A contemporary who had been with him and Polhem when they tried to get shareholders in Skane and Bohuslan for the salt company writes:

"Some also thought that it would not agree with their

interests, gave out that trade would suffer by it, and the

Kingdom should adjust itself to trade, and a lot of like

trivial objections, which yet Polhem had previously and with

good reasons shown the unreasonableness of. But no reason was

of avail here. They would get their way. So goes it when any

useful work is undertaken, then there are some caprices and

interests which entirely upset it so that the whole kingdom

must suffer because of them." (Person. Tids. pp. 92-93)

He is absolutely sure that the project would be a highly profitable one, and maintained that "it would be more useful to the country than any proposition in the world." That it was highly practical, much more so than people imagined, was evidenced by the profitable though utterly inefficient salt works at Stromstad which "have been in use now for a hundred years," and which supply the whole of Bohuslan; and, finally, he sums up: "I find no chimera in this matter, although it commences and continues in a foolish way. If I were to get the handling of it, one would soon see its advantages. God grant that all other propositions were of the same kind."       (OQ. 1:280 = LM. pp. 175-76)

This is the last we hear of the proposed salt works. The scheme conceived in patriotic vision and designed to be carried out with all the aids of science, was defeated by selfishness, laziness, lack of enterprise, or what not, and Sweden continued with her expensive salt supplemented by poor salt which the stolid peasants continued to make by their slow and expensive methods on the shores of Bohuslan; and this at the very time when salt was at its dearest, and food was rotting for want of it. (Miss.Obs. p. 65; Bring. Chas. XII, p. 511)

It was probably in the realization of the hopelessness of making any advance even in this matter which offered such prospects of success and almost certainly of profit for the individual, and of great advantage to the country - it was the realization of this perhaps that led Swedenborg to the copying of that fictitious episode at Karlskrona, where the country's ruin is so subtly aimed at. Polhem was probably at one with him in the view thus expressed, for in 1720, Polhem wrote that "Sweden seems to have sworn herself to be for the foreigner's benefit and not for her own." (Bring, Troll., p. 331)



At Brunsbo, during the December holidays, Swedenborg completed the writing out of his new system of reckoning, which he had commenced at Lund; and then, at the end of December and the beginning of January, he composed a Swedish textbook on Algebra, something absolutely unique in Sweden.

Early in January, the New System of Numbering was ready for printing, and on January 9th, it was sent to Upsala to be examined by Professor Vallerius and then to be printed under the care of Benzelius. (OQ. 1: 275 = LM. p. 176)

It may be well briefly to describe this work, which caused some little dispute between Swedenborg and his brother-in-law.

The System is based on the numbers 1 - 8, corresponding to

our 1 - 10; and 8 - 64 corresponding to our 10 - 100.

Naturally, new signs and new names were required, otherwise

there would be endless confusion. Charles XII had, indeed,

invented new characters, but since no printshop had such in

type, Swedenborg was forced to use letters.

These new names are:

el (1), es (s), en (n), em (m), et (t), ef (f), and ev

(v), being nos. l-7; 8 is ly - written lo.

In this System, 8, 16, 24, 32, etc., correspond to our 10,

20, 30, 40, etc., and 64 (8 X 8) corresponds to our 100 (10 X

10); 512 (8 X 8 X 8), to our 1,000 (10 X 10 X 10), etc.

The noughts were written at each turning point. Thus 8 = lo;

16, so; 24, no, etc. 8 X 8, 100; 8 X 8 X 8, 1000; but each of

these new characters received special names based on the

seven vowels:

       a e i o u y - but read backward.

Thus: lo = ly; loo, lu; looo, lo; loooo, li; looooo, le;

and loooooo, la.

Thus we have the following table as written and as pronounced:

1       2       3       4       5       6       7       8                            
l       s       n       m       t       f       v       lo
el       es       an       em       at       ef       ev       ly

9       10       11       12       13       14       15       16
ll       ls       ln       lm       lt       lf       lv       so
lyl       lys       lyn       1ym       lyt       lyf       lyv        sy

Then follows:       

16       24       32       increasing by              64
so       no       mo       eights                     loo
sy       ny       my       to                            lu

And then:       

64       128       192              increasing by              512
loo       soo       noo              sixty-fours              looo
lu       su       nu              up to                      lo



Swedenborg shows how to use the system in arithmetical operations. He also gives a table whereby one can at a glance turn the new numbering into the old, and vice versa. But the use of his new system on which he dwells at greatest length and which he evidently considers the most important is its application to weight and measures. In Sweden, these were based on an octave system. Thus:

32 ore              =       1 daler
8 styver              =       1 mark
8 marks              =       1 riksdaler
8 ore(s.m.)       =       1 mark
8 quintals       =       1 ounce
8 ounces              =       1 skalpund

With such weights, the new numeration would naturally be just as convenient as our numeration in relation to the American and most European coinages which are based on the decimal system.

For the rest, Swedenborg can have regarded this numeration only as a playful diversion - certainly he realized it could never be introduced with use, even if this were desirable. When sending the MS. he does indeed write: "It would be of great use if it could come into use," but he also writes that it is not likely to be adopted. (OQ.1:275, 280 = LM. pp. 166, 176)

Vallerius' judgment was evidently adverse to the publication of this work.

The serious minded and conservative Benzelius was shocked at the proposal to publish a revolutionary calculation, with no hopes of being adopted. Not only did he regard it a useless novelty having no practical purpose, but he felt that in these critical times when the values were being made merely by stamps impressed on copperplates, that the publication of the work, would be a possible source of disturbance among the ignorant who in this new reckoning would see and might be led by mischievous persons to imagine there was concealed some plan to still further lower the value of their money by calling ten eight.

He writes Swedenborg somewhat to this effect, and his letter caused the latter such sheer astonishment that at first he could not understand his brother-in- law:

       "Why does my Brother think it good counsel he make delay

with the publishing of the new reckoning. . . It was truly a

little discouraging to me . . . that my mathematical

discoveries will come to be reckoned among novelties which

the country cannot stand. I wish I had as many novelties in

literary matters, yea, a novelty for each day of the year;

thus, the world would find pleasure therein." And here, in a

spirit of self-assurance, he adds: "In a century where are

enough of those who go in the beaten track to be in accord

with what is old, but perhaps three or six or ten in a whole

century who contribute novelties which are grounded in reason

and something else."

              After thus expressing his great surprise and

indignation at his brother-in- law's objections to his work,

he then adds: "But I understood that what was meant was

something that concerns the exchange of money, buying and

selling, that they would have another name. I am now

conscious of not having put forth anything which in the least

degree was incommodious." As a final argument he adds:



"Since the King has already approved the octonary series, my

Brother should not have any concern about letting this come

out. (OQ. 1:279 = LM. pp. 175-76)

Benzelius, however, continues to have concern in the matter, and still objects to the printing, and so Swedenborg, in his next letter, makes a new appeal and offers a new argument:

"I had intended the New Calculation for the learned," he writes.
He again assumes all responsibility and adds:

"In respect to laws, war, and taxes, the King has the free

determination of matters, but in respect to words, language,

and calculations, none at all."

Then, talking about novelties, he remarks:

"One has, indeed, cause to be impatient at all the novelties

which are being introduced. Would to God that such novelties

had not been introduced into the coinage but only into the

calculation of the coinage; with this, the country would have

been better off. O Lord God," he adds, with feeling, "what

kind of a regulation has been issued in regard to relays; its

like has never been heard of," etc. (OQ. 1:282 = LM. 179-


Swedenborg appealed to Benzelius once again and for the last time when early in February he informs him that he is again to work for Polhem, and that the latter reports the King as displeased at the discontinuance of the Daedalus; he then adds:

"I should much like to take down with me something which

would please the King. Let nothing interfere with my way of

reckoning. It may be very useful for those who will use it."       

(OQ. 1: 283 = LM. p. 182)

Despite all his appeals, however, Swedenborg did not succeed in getting his new Reckoning printed. He seems, moreover, to have taken back the MS. with the intention of submitting it directly to the King - but of this we shall speak later. See Enestrom, p. 25.

The Algebra, to which we have already alluded, was intended as a companion volume to the New Reckoning so as to be bound together with it. It was a work which Swedenborg had undertaken at the request of friends. It was completed by January 14th, and had been composed probably in two or three weeks, as it were, without any aid from books. It was designed to comprise ten books, but only seven were published, filling 136 pages 12mo. The last three were to deal with factors and differential and integral calculus, but whether or not Swedenborg ever wrote them is unknown. (OQ. 1:276 = LM. p. 169; Enestrom, p. 9)

The work is above all a practical one, and applications are made to problems that occur in common life, and especially in the measuring of bulk goods, in surveying, building, fortification, etc. (see above, p. 12). Swedenborg explains in his Preface that his design has been to make the work simple and understandable by the learned and unlearned, and to show its use by practical applications. The work does indeed begin with very simple expositions, and the simple expositions are given in other places when some new aspect of algebra is to be dealt with. But the work advances far too rapidly, and its problems are far too difficult to satisfy the modern standard for a good textbook. Swedenborg's genius was not that of a school teacher. (Enestrom. p. 9)



The most remarkable feature of the work, however, was the fact of its being in Swedish - the very first work of its kind.* This required either the adoption of Latin technical terms, or their translation into new Swedish words. Swedenborg chose the latter course, but posterity has not followed him. He says in his Preface: (See Enestrom, p. 22)

* Perhaps an exception must be made of the andra Grundwahl published by Swedenborg in 1715; but Swedenborg is unique in his introduction of new Swedish terms. Moreover, at the time Swedenborg published his Algebra, Duhre's Algebra already existed in MS., and was published in the same year. This also I have not seen. See also Enestrom, p. 22 note 2 and ACSD 477C.; LM. p. 83.

       "I have sought to put into Swedish some expressions

which formerly have received their law and their name from

the Latin. We also indeed have a rich language just as well

as other peoples, all of whom have given themselves the

advantage of expressing such terms in their mother tongue.

Therefore, we also would seem poor enough both in words and

in understanding if we did not avail ourselves of the same

advantage. We have relied too much on the foreigner in other


As illustrations of Swedenborg's adaptations of words, we give the following:

periphery                     =       ring (ring)

degree                     =       circle step (cirkel-steg)

horizontal line              =       water line (vatn linie)

tangent                     =       touch line (ror linie)

parabola                     =       throw line (kast linie)

hyperbola                     =       the overthrow line (ofverkast linie)

ellipse                     =       a long circle (lang-cirkel)

cylinder                     =       roll (rull)

cone                            =       pointed roll (spitzig rull)

algebra                     =       regel konst

Unfortunately for the clarity of some of these definitions - so far as a beginner is concerned - the work was published without the figures (over 70 in number) which are referred to here and throughout the book. The work was printed "I Herrens Namn" in Upsala, and published in the Spring of 1718, though without date, and its publication is an evidence that even in those trying times, and though Swedenborg was receiving no compensation for his labors with Polhem, he yet was not in need of money. The Algebra and the New Art of Reckoning were to be printed "in fine style, indeed, even finer than the andra grundwahlen," and the costs were to be paid as soon as the work was printed. (Enestrom, pp. 9-10; OQ. 1:283, 276 = LM. pp. 181, 170)

But if Swedenborg had no trouble in financing the work, or in securing an editor and prospector, he did have trouble owing to the poor equipment of Swedish printshops, even in Upsala, for any but the most ordinary works. L horizontal must be used for - and =; a maltese cross or a dagger or an L upside down with dashes on either side for * ; capital X placed sideways for the multiplication sign, and small x for the plus sign; while



the minus sign is represented by a *. Some of these are noticed at the end of the book, where also we learn that the work was published on writing paper for 3 dal.k.m., and on printing paper for 2-1/2 dal.k.m.* (Regel Konst, pp. 13, 23, 136, 33, 69)

* In the present Swedish coinage, about Kr. 1.33 and 1.11 (Enestrom, p. 8).

The work was published toward the end of March or early in April. The MS. had been sent to Upsala on January 14th, and at the beginning of March, Swedenborg himself was in Upsala, where he read the proof of pp. 1 - 69 (all then printed). He had asked Benzelius to request a competent algebraist, Hasselbom, to look over the proofs. In any case, the pages from 1-69 still contain over 14 typographical errors, and the rest of the pages over 50 - which would manifestly unfit the book as a textbook for beginners. (OQ. 1:283 = LM. p. 181; Enestrom, p. 21)

The work "was at once received with great acclaim by those

who were interested in the matter." says a contemporary

notice,*". . .(The author is) the first of all our countryman

who has taken on himself not only to lay down the

fundamentals of an analytical science in a remarkable way,

extremely easy and clear to all students, even the most

uncultivated, but also to demonstrate, by examples selected

from many sources, the signal use of this most excellent art,

especially in mechanics. Finally, he has done all this in the

common vernacular, contributing words, even such as are of a

technical nature, in a way which constitutes a most happy

omen for our country." (NP 1929: 26)

       * Baron v. Beskow, in his Minne o Swedenborg, said that the work made no impression in Sweden, and in this Enestrom shows reasons for agreeing with him. The reviewer in the Acta Literaria, like his times, uncritical and, moreover, he went on the assumption, or at any rate, observed the general opinion that Swedenborg had done what he promised in his Preface (Enestrom, pp. 23-24).

       Swedenborg seems to have regarded the first eight books

as containing elementary algebra, says Enestrom, though such

is not the case. Each book, he continues, has three parts, of

which only the third deals with pure algebra. The other books

do indeed contain algebra as applied to the solution of

various mathematical and mechanical questions, but they also

contain much which cannot be considered as being a part of

elementary algebra, which also seems out of place in that it

cannot be understood by those not versed in the art of

calculations for whose sake the work was written. The book,

moreover, has many signs of having been hastily written. It

is full of misprints, and could not possibly have been used

as a textbook. On the other hand, Enestrom remarks that

Swedenborg "solved a great number of geometrical and

trigonometrical problems and problems in measuring, weighing,

mixing, the movement of running streams and of thrown bodies

- problems which in part could be solved by the usual methods

only with difficulty or, in some cases, not at all. On the

other hand, Enestrom remarks that the problems are so illy

chosen as almost to defeat their purpose. (Enestrom, p. 21)

       Summing up his estimation of this work, Enestrom

observes: "Swedenborg hereby showed himself, in comparison

with the Swedes of his day, as possessed of very

comprehensive knowledge in pure



mathematics - elementary algebra, geometry, trigonometry,

conic sections - and the ability to adapt it to mechanics. It

must by all means be added that his knowledge appears

sometimes fragmentary, and that the efforts he made to fill

the gaps . . . still more exposed them"; and he concludes

that, without doubt, Swedenborg was not a deep mathematician.

(Enestrom, p. 23)

       Later on, he says that Swedenborg, while he took note of

branches of mathematics then little known in Sweden; while he

made praiseworthy efforts to introduce algebra in Swedish;

while he himself showed great originality; yet, "a closer

examination of his writings shows that his mathematical

studies were from the beginning not pursued with the

necessary foundation, and that this lack was not helped at

the time he came out as a mathematical author. In the fact

that his mind was ere long drawn away to a wholly different

field of investigation, lies the sufficient explanation of

the fact that in no way did he advance the science or even

exercise any actual influence on it." Because of his

"singularly creative mind, however, adds Enestrom, the result

would have been different had he remained in the study.

"Therefore," Enestrom concludes, "in the history of

mathematical studies in Sweden, Swedenborg may with reason be

given an outstanding place, and on that ground he has

deserved that respect as a mathematician which he enjoyed

among his contemporaries. . . He can be named as a

predecessor of Sweden's first mathematician, Samuel


It appears that to this period we must ascribe the Latin Algebra (with figures) contained in Codex 86, pp. 1-164, and the Notes from Burnet written on the next following pages (165-71), - Notes which were undoubtedly written out while reading Burnet's work in preparation for the re-writing of the Earth's Going and Stoppage. Perhaps it is in the same connection that Swedenborg commenced making those short notes from Loccenius on early Swedish History which occupy several pages in Codex 86 (pp. 163, 175, 183, 186, 204, 209, 217, 239, 249, 257, 265, 273, 283, 293, 305, 315, 325, 335, 345, 355).

* The contents of this work are as follows:

       1. Algebraica

       2. Principia calculi differentialis

       3. Calculus integralis

       4. Geometrica

       5. Regulae mechanicae

       6.       "       geometricae et algebraicae in physicis

       Two pages on Centripetal force

As to the Daedalus VI, Swedenborg seems to have laid this aside to devote himself to what he regarded as the more promising work, of writing books.

In April 1717, when Daedalus VI should have come out, no. V appeared. But then Swedenborg seems to have made some arrangement to get Benzelius to secure articles for no. VI. At the end of June, he writes from Lund:

       "How goes it with Daedalus VI?" (OQ. 1:273 = LM. p. 159)

But, meanwhile, Benzelius had done nothing, or had not succeeded in persuading others to write, and Swedenborg had busied himself with writing books.

We do not again hear of the Daedalus until January 14, 1718, nine months after it should have appeared in print, when Swedenborg remarks that



besides his new mode of reckoning and algebra, he "still has enough for the Daedalus." (OQ. 1:276 = LM. p. 170)

Later, in the same letter, he proposes delaying

       "that something more mature" may come out, "if only

there were time and diversion for it. A portion of the

Daedalus," he adds, "has been written with too little

reflection; this I wish to offset with something else. In

Spring, I intend to have one thing or another completely

ready." (OQ. 1: 277 = LM. p. 170)

Writing a few days later, he expresses the desire

       "hereafter not to put forth anything which does not have

better foundations than what has gone before in the

And it is noteworthy that during this whole period he purposely avoids the Daedalus, and has his works printed separately.

"The productions or mechanics of Councillor of Commerce

Polhem I shall leave to the Daedalus," he writes; from which

we judge that Swedenborg had not yet prepared for Daedalus

VI, which did not appear till nine months later - and that he

was disposed to make his name known in the literary world by

means of his own books, and not in the reflected glory of

Polhem; and by means of philosophical studies, and not merely

of mechanics. (OQ. 1: 281 = LM. 179)

It was during these early days of 1718 that Swedenborg appears first to have entered professedly upon the study of chemistry. He himself marks this time as the beginning of his study of chemistry. It consisted in the reading of Urban Hjarne's work on that subject. He found Hjarne

"to be little grounded in the way in which chemistry should

be built up" - indeed, this is a mild putting of the matter,

for a few months later he wrote that if Hjarne did not stop

his attacks on Bishop Swedberg, "another person may show him

in like measure his own puerilities and crudities in science,

wherein he has ventured to utter himself." [See also page 212

below.] OQ.1:278, 287 = LM. 172, 198) It was not until

Swedenborg came to the study of Boerhaave that he began to

see clear light in chemistry.* (See ACSD 225A = ortz to King)

       * The work referred to is Urban Hjarne's Acta Chemica Holmensium Parasceve, id est, Praeparatio at Tentamina in Reg. Lab. Holm. Peracta. Holm. 1712. This work was the first published product of the Chemical Laboratory established under Hjarne's direction. Despite the fact that Hjarne was one of the leading scientists of his day, and in many respects was in advance of his age, yet it would have been no hard task for a close thinker like Swedenborg to show up several puerilities in Hjarne's Chemistry. Thus, primitive salt is defined as: "That which is generated by the rays of the sun and moon, and is more intimately bound in with corporeal elements, to wit, air, water and subtle earth." This salt then becomes more specific according to the proportion in which grosser elements flow in. Acid salt has more of water and sulphur. Urinous salt has more of air; fixed salt, more of earth, but it is never found without the presence of fire and sulphur" (pp. 54-55).

Swedenborg's dawning interest in chemistry led him at this time to some reflections as to the nature of water particles, and for the investigation of this question, he was led to make many observations on the ice crystals and their form, and it was perhaps these experiments that led him




to the theory on which he later wrote, as to water and air being constituted of round particles. The observations themselves, he wrote out in Leiden, November 1721, and later published in his Miscellaneous Observations III. 1.

It is to this period, perhaps, that we may ascribe the date of an MS. called "Discourse between Mechanics and Chemistry concerning the Essence of Nature." This work, which occupies 25 folio MS. pages but of which at least 2 pages have been lost, is in Swedenborg's handwriting; but it is without the slightest doubt a writing up by Swedenborg of one of Polhem's numerous dialogues on scientific subjects, where Chemistry listens humbly and affirmatively to the lessons of Mechanics. Perhaps it was written up with a view to inserting it in Daedalus Hyperboreus VI. It contains several statements which may be assumed to have greatly impressed Swedenborg. Thus:

The earth is held to maintain its equilibrium by virtue of a

central fire which fills its centre and which is lighter than

ether. By the depth and weight of the primitive ocean, round

particles near the bottom are pressed into tetrahedral

particles, hence they become salt particles as distinguished

from water particles. The heavier primitive particles would

sink to the bottom, and the finer would come to the top; the

one might make the ocean sand, which is neither salt nor

water. (OQ. 3:250-52)

Oil particles are of the same kind as water, save that their

parts are smaller and rounder than water particles; they

combine with salt particles to make a body in equilibrium

with water, and form matter containing air and ether. All

this is the result of "Mathematical and Hydrostatic

Principles" which "drive away all occult qualities." (OQ.

3:253, 254)

The interest of the MS. dwindles as it goes on to the subject

of eating and drinking as a cause of disease, and it may be

that for this reason Swedenborg abandoned it.

Toward the end of January, Swedenborg heard from Benzelius the announcement of the death of Professor Elfvius on January 12, 1718:

"God give him peace and read," writes Swedenborg on January 21st.

"I think his wish was also the same." (OQ. 1:278 = LM. p. 174; UUH. 2:2:78)

To Benzelius, this death now really offered to Swedenborg the opportunity of entering into an "honorable" position in which he could be of great use to the country. His work with Polhem was now apparently at an end, since nothing had been done about the locks, and the salt works seemed doomed. Of course, Swedenborg was still extraordinary Assessor of the Bergscollegium, but the position was not only without pay but was also somewhat indefinite. Clearly, Benzelius thought, with the death of the Professor of Astronomy, the opportunity had arrived of having Swedenborg appointed as Professor.

But Swedenborg has changed from the time when he proposed to reduce the Professors' salaries or the Professorships, to provide a Professorship of Mechanics to be filled by himself.



       "In what my Brother was pleased to counsel me concerning

the succession [of Professor Elfvius], I recognize my

Brother's goodness. . . None of my family has desired me such

good in every respect as my Brother. . . My Brother's

reasons, therefore, are quite good though, on the other side,

I also have retained for myself other good reasons; such as:

[1] That which I have is likewise an honorable position. 2.

In this also I can be of use to the Fatherland, and in actual

practice more than in a College, which has not been my

genius. My genius is mechanics, and it likewise will become

chemistry, and our College* is noted for having members who

have little understanding of that subject; and so I, on my

part, shall seek to offset that, and I hope that my genius in

this will be of such advantage to them as their genius is an

advantage in other respects. I also think that no one will

have cause to judge me unworthy." (OQ. 1:278 = LM. p.


       * i.e., the Bergscollegium.

Benzelius had evidently suggested that were Swedenborg made a Professor, he would have to put up with that envy which would be sure to be excited by the appointment of a practical man as a professor, and not one who had had training as an auscultant. For Swedenborg continues his letter as follows:

"As to envy, this gives me more amusement than trouble, for

I have ever striven to be envied, and should in time become

more so. The only reason which would encourage me then

thereto [that is, to accept the Professorship if offered]

would be to get to be with my Brother, and also to get to

enjoy one or two years diversion to put on paper some of my

thoughts - a thing which I have a little difficulty with

[now]." (OQ. 1:279 = LM. 174)

And yet, Swedenborg is not quite decided against his Brother-in-law's suggestion; but he is sure he will never seek for a Professorship.

"In no way will I solicit the Consistory and the Rector in

this matter in writing," he says, "for, in case it should not

succeed, I should have had the annoyance of having sought to

separate myself from a position of such honor, wherefrom in

time, I can gain greater good fortune than in one which I get

the promises of holding to my dying day. I should also have

had the annoyance of declaring myself unworthy of the

position I have. Therefore," and this is his final

conclusion, "if the Academy finds me useful therein, they

will do it [i.e. appoint me] without any prayer on my part;

but if they do not find me useful - to that I am

indifferent." (Ibid.)

In answer to this letter, Benzelius wrote again, urging a professorship on Swedenborg, for in a letter dated January 30th, the latter hopes his Brother will accept his decision, as already expressed:

"I hope to be of as great use," he adds, "in that which is

entrusted to me, and likewise to be of as great use and

benefit to myself, seeing that I now have a step to further

advancement, which I can not look forward to at Upsala; nor

do I think that his Majesty would have me leave my position."

(OQ. 1:282 = LM. p. 179)

But though not contemplating a professorship, he does hope so far to perfect himself in physics and chemistry as to be a worthy member of that Collegium which Benzelius evidently contemplated even now as the successor of the Collegium Curiosorum.



Swedenborg's letter was not taken as an absolute refusal, for when the question of Elfvius's successor came before the Upsala Consistory, Professor Rudbeck actually proposed Swedenborg - but without success. Indeed, Rudbeck would have nominated him as being "clever in mathematics," in the meeting of the Consistory of June 10th, 1719, to elect a successor to Professor Vallerius who had died the preceding August, but he did not know how Swedenborg then felt about the matter. (ACSD 274A, 176)

But while Swedenborg, during these weeks of leisure in Brunsbo (Dec. 1717 to Jan. 1718) was engaged in mathematical writings, he was also busily employed in writing on more theoretical and abstract subjects. In a letter dated January 21, 1718, he writes that he has five tracts which he hoped to publish in the Spring. We can name them with some certainty, as follows: (OQ. 1: 280 = LM. p. 176)

1. On air and water particles, showing that they are round. (Ibid. 281=178)

This was finished on January 21, 1718, and was sent to Upsala some days later by the hands of Dr. Rudbeck, with the particular request that it be printed as a separate tract in 8vo. Swedenborg describes it as "subtle" and says of it that it will

"likely be contrary to the philosophy of many; but," he adds,

"since it is built on evidence and geometry, I hope no one

will reasonably deny it. The prejudgment one has acquired

from Descartes and others will likely cause the most

objection. Dr. Roberg, who is himself subtle in all that is

minute and subtle, can best judge concerning it. . . I should

like to hear his judgment. If Professor Vallerius would lay

aside his own and his d: Father's Cartesianism, his Judgment

also would be esteemed by me."
The work was to have been dedicated to Abbe Bignon. (Ibid. 281, 284:=178, 183)

Despite Swedenborg's earnest request, Dr. Benzelius did not have this work printed. It is not, however, among the Linkoping MSS., because Swedenborg took it with him to Amsterdam where he published it - probably rewritten - as Part III of his Miscellaneous Observations on the Bullular Hypothesis.

Here we have Swedenborg's first teaching that creation was

affected by motion in the infinite, and proceeded by the

motions of particles. It is of interest to note this early

conception of the Principia theory and also its relation in

Swedenborg's mind to Cartesianism.

He speaks of what he had written in January 1718, as

"a matter which I have had it in view to bring out in a

large book . . . but since one has not the facilities for so

large a store, my appetite must adapt itself to the food at

hand." The use of his tract on the round particles will be,

he supposes, to show that "nature can better be searched out

in all her parts in the air and in water; for if one finds

the correct figure of the particles, one will in turn get to

know all the properties which belong to the figure." (OQ.

1:281 = LM. p. 178)

2. The second of the five works which Swedenborg speaks of as being ready was the Longitude which he had now completely rewritten. This he proposes to dedicate to Professor Halley of Oxford. It was preparatory to the re-writing of this work that Swedenborg makes the notes and extracts contained in Codex 86, pp. 176-82, 184-86.       (Ibid. 284 = 183)



3. The third work was the Height of Waters, a work to which he refers in his Theory of the Round Particle as printed in his Chemistry.

4. The Motion and Position of the Earth and Planets, which in point of time was the first of these five works; see above, p. 148.

Nos. 2, 3 and 4 were actually published by Swedenborg in 1719; but:

5. which was on the Nature of Fire and Colors, was never published by Swedenborg but remained in Benzelius's keeping. Its conclusions, however, put in clearer form are incorporated in a section of Miscellaneous Observations, Part III (The Bullular Hypothesis). (Miss. Obs. pp. 92-4, 104s; Sc. and Ph.Tr. I: l: 11)

       The writing of it seems to have been inspired by

Swedenborg's actively entering into the study of chemistry:

"My genius," he wrote on Jan. 21, 1718, "is mechanics, and it

will likewise become chemistry." (OQ. 1: 279 = LM.

p. 174)

The work is a recital of theories that have been advanced, and a tentative putting forward of new or modified theories, with suggestions as to the experiments which might be made in the way of tests.

       It opens by questioning whether one can judge concerning

fire and colors merely by comparison with water and its

nature. Better than this theoretical reasoning would be the

examination of actual experiments; otherwise, Swedenborg

adds, we should be like one who, from the shape of men,

concludes as to the shape of angels. (OQ. 3: 237)

       That fire consists of the elasticity or "fermentation"

of the air, he thinks likely, since fire is nourished by air.

But does rapid motion of air cause color and fire? He

suggests that this may be ascertained if air be introduced

through an aperture into a vacuum, and observation be made as

to whether it generates any heat. In any case, a flame does

not consist of ether. (Ibid. p. 238)

       Color does not consist of undulations which have their

own activity, but is caused by refraction, as shown in

prisms, bubbles, etc., where the percurrent ether is

refracted into the air. The white of foam, shaved ice,

powdered glass is due to the irregularity of the particles,

but all other colors depend on the regularity of the

particles resulting in refraction. (Ibid.)

       That Sight is effected by undulations of the ether,

like hearing by undulations of the air, Swedenborg considers

an "ingenious speculation which can hardly be overthrown";

that it is not due to the air, is shown by experiments.

Hearing is due to undulation in the air, which is like the

waves in water: but sight is due to a tremulation in the air,

as when one particle strikes another and causes each to

vibrate but not the whole volume.*       (Ibid. 239)

       * Confer AE 726:3 - volumatim, singulatim.

       This hypothesis also needs to be proved.

       There is undulation and tremulation in water; the latter

is, for instance, caused by a shot fired over the water which

a submerged



man will hear by a tremulation of the water particles. There

is an analogy between the flow of heat and the flow of water.

But theories must be built on experiments, not on analogies,

"for by analogies one may embrace . . . the theories which,

in the experiments, nature herself disproves.       (OQ. 3:


       The colors of the rainbow arise from ether refracted

through water bubbles. That fire flies in and out of the

spaces in fat, saltpetre, etc. (Hjarne), he questions; it

also receives nourishment from them, as shown by their charge

into substances that cannot be burned. The rest of this

argument is left to be filled in later, and Swedenborg turns

his attention to ether.

       This, he asserts, is 55,600 times lighter than water, as

"may be established by experiment," but whether it is swifter

or more subtle or lighter in the same proportion is

uncertain. Some experiments in balls of different weights and

size, etc., are then suggested. (Ibid. 241)

       The particles of one element may be equal in size to

those of another which is different in weight and so in

motion; or the two may have approximately the same weight and

yet differ considerably in local axilliary, undulatory and

tremulatory motion - all of which must be looked into.

And then Swedenborg ends with the words: "The continuation another time."

The end phrase suggests that the work is a first draft for an article in Daedalus VI.

With regard to the above five tracts, it must not be supposed that they were commenced and finished during this holiday at Brunsbo. They were doubtless completed then or, at any rate, looked over in preparation for sending them to the printer; but the writing of them must have occupied Swedenborg's days and especially his evenings, while he was in Karlskrona and Lund.

On January 22nd, Swedenborg left Brunsbo for his stepmother's property in Starbo where he arrived on January 29th, visiting on his way ironworks on the Skinnskatteberg homestead, where probably he studied the nature of fire experimentally. (OQ. 1:280 = LM. p. 176)

This homestead had been part of the property left by Albrecht Behm, Swedenborg's maternal grandfather, to his children - one son and four daughters. The son Albrecht Behm died childless in 1693. Thus, the property, including Skinnskatteberg and Axmar, belonged to the four daughters, Anna Margaret, Ingrid, Sarah and Brita, who were consequently endowed with considerable wealth.* Sarah married Jesper Swedberg, and when she died in 1696, she left her share to her husband and children who, in 1718, were six in number. Sarah's older sister, Anna Margareta, married Peter Swedberg (Schonstrom), Swedenborg's paternal uncle, and in 1697, their daughter Anna Catharine



married Professor Rudbeck Junior, who thus became Swedenborg's cousin and a co-heir in the Skinnskatteberg ironworks.

* Note: According to Swedish law, estates must go to the children equally, the sons having 2 shares, the daughters, 1 (Robinson, An Account of Sweden, p. 20).

The children, doubtless poor and pressed for money, were very desirous of selling some or all of this property, their plan being to sell it to a certain Jonas Ahlgren for 32,000 dal.k.m., at 6,000 dalers a year. Swedenborg was agreeable to the proposition, especially since the price of iron had been fixed by the government; its working, therefore, Swedenborg thought, gave very little profit, and he writes: "If I do not find any profit in the works, I shall seek it where I can." (OQ. 1.282 = LM. p. 180)

The family assembled in Starbo to discuss this matter. Lars Benzelius and his wife who resided there - Lars Benzelius being the Master of Mines in the East and West mining districts - Cousin Rudbeck who arrived the day after Swedenborg, and perhaps also Captain Lundstedt. Eric Benzelius was fully represented by Emanuel, and Jesper was in America. (Bergskollegium        p. 168)

It was not an harmonious family, and there was much discussion and hard feeling expended on the distribution of their joint inheritance, both at the time of which we now speak and also in 1721 when the dispute concerned another and much more valuable property, and was taken to the law court.

Whether the sale to Ahlgren was agreed on or not, we cannot say; probably it was not agreed to. But in any case, only a part of the Skinnskatteberg property was thus sold; moreover, subsequent to the Ahlgren business, Bishop Swedberg presented the whole of his share to his children, with the pious but unfulfilled hope that they would work in harmony. There is an entry in the Bergskollegium which indicates that Swedenborg and Rudbeck bought out the rest of the heirs. This entry, which must be dated subsequent to Swedenborg's ennoblement in 1719, reads:

              Schillon, Skinnskatteberg,

Managers: Erland Cameen and Ludwig v. Hagen.


              Iron-furnace and force. (Doc. 1: 373)

In any case, Swedenborg experienced much trouble both from his own family and from his neighbor Ahlgren, probably with regard to payments and distribution. There seems to have been another conference held in Brunsbo the following October, 1718, for Swedenborg in that month writes:

"I wish that it may come out all right. Brother Lars is

somewhat unpleasant toward me. It would be well that he do

not desire to continue in this course, for, to look more to

the benefit of an Ahlgren than to his own brother-in-law does

not seem proper for relatives. Among all my brothers and

sisters," he continues, "I find none who has willed and does

will me well save d: Brother. In this I was singularly

confirmed by a letter which my Brother wrote to d: Father

during my journey abroad.* If I can in any

way show my

gratitude, it shall not be lacking. Brother Unge likes no

one; at least, he has shut off d: Father's and Mother's mind

from me now for four years; yet, it will boot him nothing."

(OQ. 1:287 = LM. pp. 198-99)

       * Either Jasper or Eliezer is referred to. Jasper stayed in London during the year immediately after Emanuel's departure; and then went to America where he taught in the Swedish Church School at Wilmington.

And yet, only a few months previously he had suggested that the post of Professor of the Swedish language be created at Upsala, and that Unge be



nominated to fill it!

On his return to Brunsbo, Swedenborg probably continued his Latin Algebra by writing the parts on Calculus (Codex 86: 191-205).

It will be recalled that in answer to a canal plan presented by Christopher Polhem, the King had authorized the formation of a private sluice company with a thousand shares at 100 dal.s.m. a share. (See above, p. 151) The company did not materialize. After finishing the dock work at Karlskrona, Polhem and Swedenborg went to Uddevalla to establish a saltwork in Gullmarsfiord. Polhem proposed to establish also a smithy for iron plates, also tinwork, etc., at Karlsgraf, making use of the water power there. At the end of November, he writes to the King asking for privileges; he also states that this would be the time to build the sluice at Karlsgraf as a part of the canal scheme; and since many hold it impossible to build sluices at Trollhattan, and since this will cause many to think twice before investing their money in the sluice company, even though the King's guarantee be thereby slighted; to avoid this, he suggests a lock should be built in Karlsgraf at public expense in order to demonstrate how locks can be built at little cost without using "bricks, cement, and building masters from Holland at great cost." This demonstration would create the desire to build

canals, not only at Trollhattan but also between Venner and

Norrkoping, etc., and so the company could be established.

Even if no capital came in, yet it would be a model for

posterity; for "who knows when a Swedish mechanic will again

be found who has his four necessary parts, Theory, Practice,

Physics, and Inventions, not counting resolution which is not

the least." (Bring, Troll. p. 326)

       The proposed sluice was to be 30 X 8 ells,* and 16 ells

deep, and the estimated cost was 4,000 dal.s.m. or, including

clearing Karlsgraf, 6,000 dal.s.m. For his part in the work,

Polhem asked for himself and heirs the rights to the revenue

of this one lock. (Bring, Troll. p. 328)

       * Even now, regret is expressed that the sized locks planned by Polhem were not adopted. The present lock at Karlsgraf prevents large vessels passing through the canal (Guide, p. 52-53).

       Polhem has great schemes in his head - including the

establishing of a great manufacturing city at Wennersborg,

which would greatly benefit from the navigation, when the

latter was opened. In the middle of December he is summoned

to Lund to talk with the King, and the result of the

interview was that on January 18, 1718, the King issued a

decree empowering Polhem to build a canal between Stockholm

and Norrkoping and Goteborg. The work was to be completed in

five years, as follows:

       1st year, sluice at Karlsgraf; 2nd year, sluices at

Trollhattan; 3d year, navigation between Wennersborg and

Goteborg; 4th year, between Venner and Vetter;* 5th year, to


       * Via Mariestad (on Lake Venner, some miles below the present canal). Bokwetts Gillets Protokoll, p. 27. - Halno [? Hallna] through Lake Vik down to Vetter.



For this work, Polhem was to have 40,000 dal.s.m. a year at

his disposal, and personal compensation of 5 dal.s.m. a day,

besides his salary as Councillor of Commerce. Moreover, on

completing the work, he was to have 5,000 dal.s.m. the first

year, 10,000 the second, 15,000 the third, 10,000, the

fourth; 10,000 the fifth. This applied either to Polhem or,

in case of his death, to his successor.       (Bring. Troll. p.


       The work, however, was not to prevent Polhem from going

on with the dock at Karlskrona.

The work was authorized on January 18th, and Polhem went at once to Wennersborg to prepare for the actual work which, in his eyes, gave such bright promise for Sweden. Naturally he turned to his old Assistant at Karlskrona; and very early in February, Swedenborg, in his peaceful retreat at Starbo, learned of the news which was again to bring him face to face with the King, and to give him the opportunity of devoting his talents to his Fatherland.

       "Today," he writes, early in February, "I got a letter

from Councillor of Commerce Polhem from Wennersborg, who is

urgent and insistent that I shall go there. He has got the

decree that the work on the sluices is to commence and

navigation be instituted between the Baltic and the North Sea

by way of Venner and Vetter to Norrkoping at his Majesty's

own cost - whereby one is likely to incur a vast amount of

work." (OQ. 1:283 = LM p. 182)

Yet, despite his own eagerness, Swedenborg could not at once join in his new work. He was obliged to remain in Starbo until the middle of February in connection with his work as mine owner, and then, the very necessities of his life demanded a breathing space in Upsala - and perhaps a chance to see personally if he could not persuade his brother into agreeing as to printing the New Reckoning - a work which, naturally, he would dearly love to present printed to the King.

"Let nothing interfere with my Way of Reckoning," he writes

to Benzelius, after telling him of the revival of the canal


"It may be very useful for those who will use it." (Ibid.)
Moreover, Swedenborg, it will be remembered, had two works ready to print, and these he would wish to present to his Majesty whom he would be bound
to see.

Polhem had written that the King had expressed himself as being displeased at the discontinuance of the Daedalus. But somehow, Swedenborg seems to have taken a dislike to continuing this work. It did not advance him, since everything was overshadowed by the fame of Polhem. Moreover, in this journal, he felt under the necessity of presenting some of Polhem's inventions, and perhaps he had none at hand, or perhaps he was so actively engaged on his own ideas which already had been written down in five separate books, that he had neither the time nor the appetite to turn to Polhem's mechanics.

And so he hoped to present to the King something more peculiarly his own, and something also more developed and thought out. Therefore, as soon as the business at Starbo was completed, he rushed post haste to Upsala where at once he began the publication of his Longitude, which was issued a little later. It had been Swedenborg's desire to print a separate and enlarged edition as his Longitude, in time for presentation to the King at



his first meeting with him in June 1717, when doubtless he thought the work might have some influence in connection with the petition to found a Royal Observatory in Upsala. But Swedenborg had been too busy with his work, and whatever time he had had to spare was devoted to Daedalus V on which he laid great stress.

The Longitude is the first of Swedenborg's works to contain his official title on the title-page, "Emanuel Swedberg, Assessor i Kongl. Bergskollegium." It will be noted that he entitles himself Assessor, not Assessor Extraordinary, and, indeed, a careful reading of his warrant of appointment justifies this title. Yet, the fact remains that he received no salary from the Bergskollegium.

The work is dedicated to Herr Edmund Halley*, "Prov. Savill. in Oxford, England." Swedenborg's intention had been to translate the work [into Latin or English] and present it to Halley "in such a way that I hope it will meet some one's approval," but whether he did so is not known. It would seem that Swedenborg had not entirely forgotten that a handsome prize was attached in England to the solution of the Longitude problem; but that this was not in his mind in the writing of the book is shown by its style which stamps it as being addressed and accommodated to the ordinary man and not merely to the learned. Indeed, the fact of its being published in Swedish is in itself sufficient evidence of this.                                                                      (OQ. 1.284 = LM. p. 183)

* Halley was also Secretary of the Royal Society and, as Savillian Professor of Astronomy, was a member of the Commission on the Longitude. He became Astronomer Royal in 1719 at the death of Flamsteed.

The 1718 edition consists of 25 sections in 38 pages, as compared with the 16 sections and 13 pages of the Daedalus Hyperboreus. It is entirely rewritten with the general motive of making it simpler and adapted to a wider public. Unfortunately, while it refers to ten figures, no copy has ever been found with any figures, whereas the Daedalus article had two figures. We doubt not that Swedenborg left Upsala intending to send the figures on, or perhaps he had left the figures with Benzelius, or given instructions to have them made. But with the stress of work that followed, they were forgotten. Expense also may have been in the cause; this also seems to account for the fact that Swedenborg published only the Longitude and not the Going and Stoppage of the Earth or his Round Particles.

In the Preface, he pays a compliment both to Halley and to his country:

"It is better" he says, "to trust oneself to one who had

understanding in the matter rather than to many who approve

and disapprove a thing, and yet have no wisdom or right

foundation in it." "Among the learned in England, there is

no one," he continues, "who has gained from experience a

better understanding of this subject than the Herr Professor

who has twice been sent out to distant places south of the

Equator and elsewhere, and has there made many investigations

and observations for which the learned world pays him honor.

He has also shown how the east and west longitude might be

found by the eclipse of the large stars by the moon. In



England, others also have been encouraged by the Members of

Parliament, and by the renewed promises of other kingdoms;

but it is unfortunately to be observed that no method has yet

been found which can be generally accepted. What I, in brief,

have comprehended on this matter, I leave first to the Herr

Professor's riper judgment, for he and his knowledge herein

have had rich experience, as already stated. Here in Sweden I

have had no further occasion than to compare it with the

methods which have been given out before; and in this way I

have found many easements and advantages which have given me

the hope that it can be brought into practice for the use of


He goes on to say that in Sweden they set high value on astronomy, though they cannot show this like other countries.

       "If the Almighty God provides our great Monarch with

long life, then Sweden also will be encouraged ever more and

more in these and like literary arts. For his Majesty," adds

Swedenborg proudly, even though addressing a subject of the

Duke of Hannover, "not only sets great estimation and value

in them but he himself has likewise a lofty understanding and

profound judgment in such matters; so great that many of the

great mathematicians do not measure up to him. And therefore,

we are looking forward to this advantage, that these sciences

will come to their flower, that we will get the encouragement

to make many investigations and tests which may be compared

with those which are made in England and elsewhere, and

perhaps may in many respects be of enlightenment to them.

Astronomy seems to have better opportunities here than in

other places, because we have so pure and clear a sky, such a

good horizon, and also suitable places for observations,"


In the first chapter, Swedenborg, following the example of his Regel Konst, translates into Swedish the technical terms involved, having in many cases to coin new words. Thus

Eccliptic              =       sol-linean (sun line)

Zodiac              =       planet-linien

Meridian              =       middags-linien

Horizon              =       watn-linien (water line)

Refraction              =        Luftbrytning (air breaking)

Quadrant              =        fierdund (a quarterer)

Then follow chapters on:

(2) Definitions of East and West Longitudes.
(3) The Use to be expected from finding the Longitude.
(4) The methods hitherto suggested. Eleven different ways are pointed out, with explanations and objections, and the chapter shows a wide reading on the subject.
(5) The possibility of finding the Longitude.
(6) The advantages of the new method.
(7) The parallaxes and the difficulty of finding them in the ordinary way

Chapters 8-12 and 21-23 set forth the Author's method in great detail and how to use it.

Chapters 13-20 answer objections to the method.

Chapters 25 and last chapter shows how many natural opportunities are afforded for using this method:



If the learned world would be pleased to test this method and

compare it with others, Swedenborg concludes, "I know it will

at least win the verdict that it is the easiest that has

hitherto been offered for finding the longitude by the moon

. . . Therefore, should the impartial judge be pleased to

compare it with the method of others and try it, then I give

myself the hope that it can be put into practice for the use

and delight of seamen."

Swedenborg's hope was never realized, for though he printed his Longitude twice afterwards - in 1721 and 1766 - yet he never succeeded in attaining his design, namely, its actual use in navigation.

After completing his work at Upsala, Swedenborg joined Polhem at Wennersborg, which was the Headquarters of the canal operations.

A part of Karlsgraf or Charles' ditch was originally a small

stream running into an inlet of Lake Venner. This had been

enlarged by Charles IX and continued all the way to the Gotha

Elf a distance of from 7 to 8 miles. It was necessary for

Polhem to clear out this waterway and prepare it for

navigation, as well as to build the one sluice which he had

planned. There were immense difficulties in the way. There

was no real money in the country. Workmen were hard to get,

since the Army had absorbed one-fifth of the whole

population, and crops must be attended to. This difficulty

was relieved later by the use of Russian prisoners.

Difficulties were also caused by the arbitrary fixing of

prices, sometimes at a figure which made men unwilling to


(Bring, Troll., pp. 51, 58, 71, Polhem, p. 202,

Chas. XII, pp. 513-14; Lindeberg, p. 103)

When Swedenborg joined Polhem in March, work on the sluice itself was commenced. Swedenborg seems to have been Polhem's chief Assistant in this work, and as such was naturally looked to by young men who were ambitious to be employed - especially under the great Polhem. At the end of June 1718, Swedenborg writes:

"We are daily occupied with the first sluice in bringing it

to completion, which, however, cannot likely be done before

Michaelmas (Sept. 29th). The cost amounts to little beyond

all expectation since all the work is in wood, and yet it is

so constructed that it can endure for a long time and can be

rebuilt at any necessary point without making necessary to

renew the whole work."

(Bring, Pol. p. 202; OQ. 1:284, 286 = LM. pp. 186-7, 192)

There seems no doubt that Swedenborg's admiration was fully deserved, for in several respects Polhem had advanced beyond the Dutch canal builders who hitherto had ruled supreme; not only had he provided stone facings to prevent rotting, and such a mode of construction that any part could be repaired with little delay and without upsetting the whole, but he had also invented a mechanism whereby the lock gates were to be worked by a windmill. (Bring, Polhem, p. 202)

As to cheapness, Swedenborg spoke somewhat too early. When the work was stopped, the actual cost had been 22,000 dal.s.m., as against the estimate of 6,000 dal.s.m. See above, p. 177; also Riksdagerna, p. 540. (Ibid. pp. 200, 203; see Troll. pp. 331, 73)



But with all this, Swedenborg was highly satisfied with his literary prospects. Thus far, literature had brought him nothing but expense, and though he was working with Polhem, the work brought him no financial returns:

"It seems to me," he writes, "that the trouble of further

advancing science receives little reward, both because of the

lack of money to enable one to advance therein so far as one

ought, and likewise because of the jealousy which so strongly

prevails against those who in any matter show more industry

than others; when a country in general is leaning toward

barbarism, it is vain for one or two to hold it up."       

(OQ 1:285 = LM p. 187)

The jealousy Swedenborg here speaks of probably refers not so much to the work at Karlsgraf as to Swedenborg's literary work which be lost no opportunity of introducing to the King's notice.

On May 15th, he had the good fortune again to meet the King, who was then visiting at Wennersborg prior to departure for Lund. On this occasion, Charles visited Trollhattan and inspected the scene where Polhem's work was to be in 1719. It would seem that both Polhem and Swedenborg attended him on this occasion, and great stories of their might were told in the country round Wennersborg. It was reported, for instance, that they stopped up the Falls at the moment the King was there: "Such is the confidence they have in art," observes Swedenborg. He writes also that on this visit he talked much with the King, and offered him his last published work, the Algebra and the Longitude, which Swedenborg "left on the table where he sat for a good while and read it." (Bring. Troll. p. 70; Rhysel. p. 83; Nordberg, p. 666, see p. 66; OQ 1:285 = LM pp. 187-88)

When the King returned from Lund in the middle of June his attention was evidently called to the fact that Swedenborg, despite all his work at Karlskrona and Karlsgraf, had not received single penny in compensation, and it was probably about this time that the King orally promised advancement to Swedenborg. At any rate, on June 22nd, Charles issued from Stromstad a royal command to the Upphandlings Deputation which, in effect, was the Kingdom's Treasury in charge of Baron v. Goertz, to pay Swedenborg 3 dal.s.m a day so long as he works at the canal. The sum would have been very satisfactory had it been paid for Polhem himself received only 5 dal.s.m. per day. But like many another salary at that time, it existed only on paper. And when, in the middle of July, Goertz himself, the all-powerful minister who was the actual head of the whole canal work, came to view the work at Karlsgraf, Swedenborg evidently took the occasion to speak of the matter.* The result was that a few days later he received from Secretary Cederholm a copy of a royal order to the effect that he was to receive free board at the canal works - from which it would appear that before then he had been defraying his own expenses in board, (Rhyzel. p. 85; NCL 1896:152; ACSD 162; Bring, p. 68; Riks.bidrag p. 144; OQ 1:285 = LM. p. 187.)

* See Karolinska Forbundets, p. 179, where it is said to be a launching in Iddefjord on July 6-7.

The new order was satisfactory so far as it went, and on August 4th he wrote a letter of thanks to Baron Goertz, and at the same time apologized for not having waited on the Baron at Wennersborg; at the sluiceworks they had not been informed of his presence in the city. He also offered to send the Baron, every now and again, plans of the canal works, showing how matters were progressing.       (ACSD 162A bis)



This was all very fine, but it did not give to Swedenborg the salary which, for so long a time he had undoubtedly earned. Therefore at the same time that he wrote to Baron Goertz in person, he also addressed a letter to the Upphandlings Deputation requesting payment of the salary already granted by the King. His appeal was vain, however, and it was not until June 1723 that Swedenborg received a penny of compensation for all the work which he did in the King's service for a period of five and a half years. (ACSD 162)

However, hope was in the air, for the reports spread through Wennersborg by the followers of the French Ambassador who came there to meet Goertz, justified the expectation that Goertz's discussions with the Russians at Aland would lead to that peace which all so ardently desired. (OQ. 1:285 = LM. p. 187)

It was perhaps in connection with his work on the canal sluice that Swedenborg wrote the paper entitled       "A new way of sailing against the stream when the wind is contrary." The paper consisted of two folio pages and was illustrated by three diagrams showing how a vessel can be worked by paddle wheels so geared that the power can be supplied by one or two men. (Phot. 1: 86-88, cf. also 90)

The canal was not long to be Swedenborg's only work. Since

the Spring the King had been preparing for the campaign

against Norway, and, with this in view, had spent many weeks

moving between Ed and Stromstad on the Norwegian border.

Except for a month's stay in Lund, during this time and even

until he actually took the field in October, his headquarters

were at Stromstad. The reason was obvious, for here was the

depot for receiving the ammunition and army stores intended

for the attack in Frederickshall. The stores came up by ship

from Uddevalla and Goteborg, but they could go no farther by

water because both of the Danish fleet in the Kattegat and of

obstructions to the Swinesund where the Swedes had sunk two

ships. Charles XII, however, was determined to command

Iddefjord, and for this purpose he conceived the idea of

transporting overland not only stores and ammunition but also

the ships themselves for use in the siege of Frederickshall.

The plans for the work were probably drawn up by Polhem, but

the work was done under the direction of Quartermaster D.

Dahlheim, and the King himself was frequently present,

directing and encouraging the soldier workmen by promises of

rewards. The Danes also were transporting ships overland.

(Kar.For. pp. 155-6, 160, 165-66; Bring. Chas. XII p. 638;

Nordberg p. 667; NP 1926:8-9;       SBL 4:35;

ACSD 162A2; Fryx. 29:120)

On June 26th was begun the work of carrying several ships,

including two galleys,* overland to Iddefjord, The first of

these to be launched at Iddefjord on July 7th was in action

within an hour, and its victory was so signal that there was

no doubt as to carrying over more ships. A larger and heavier

ship, the Luren, was ordered from Goteborg to Stromstad. This

ship was provided with a new invention whereby it could be

steered at the bow or stern. It was found that the

arrangements in use for the other vessels would not suffice

for the Luren, and on July 13th, Polham was consulted as to

the matter. Polhem at once detached Swedenborg from the

Sluicework, and sent him to superintend the work at

Stromstad; Swedenborg was


LIFE OF SWEDENBORG p. 185        

optimistic as to results, but he required the services of 800

men (soldiers and sailors) instead of 500. Even so, the work

was exceedingly hard. It was found that owing to the weight

of the Luren, Polhem's plan would not work, and the old plan

had to be adopted, though with improvements, to which

doubtless Swedenborg contributed. (Kar.For. pp. 166, 168-9;

Nordberg p. 667; ACSD 162:2, 5, 6, 6a)

       * The galley of that day was a threemaster, going to the length of nearly 200 feet. The Luren had a crew of 45 officers and men, and carried 100 soldiers (Kar.For. p. 171 seq.).

The Luren had already been carried a little distance, and at

the time of Swedenborg's arrival (July 20th), it was on land

at the foot of a slope up which it must be carried before it

could again be launched, an undertaking which proved to be

harder than was expected.

The transport of the Luren was not completed until September

2nd when it was successfully launched in Iddefjord in the

presence of Charles himself, if we are to believe tradition.

Tradition also relates that from a height in the

neighborhood, "the King, the Duke of Holstein his nephew,

Swedenborg and high officers watched an important engagement

with the Norwegians."

(Kar.For. p. 170; NP 1926:6; ACSD 162:11)

During this period, Swedenborg, who naturally was a person of some consequence in connection with the important work in hand, met the King more than once.

       "I found his Majesty very gracious to me," he writes

later, "and more so than I could presume to, which is a good

omen to me. Count Morner has also shown me all the favor I

could ever wish. With the King I had mathematical matters to

the fore every day, and he deigned to be pleased with

everything. When, moreover, the eclipse took place,* I took

his Majesty outside to see it, and talked much concerning the

causes of it. This was only an entree. I hope in time to

achieve something in that quarter for the advancement of

science, being unwilling at the present time to ask for

anything which might seem like an innovation. With regard to

my Daedalus Hyperboreus, his Majesty was quite critical that

I have not followed it up for some time, but I pleaded want

of a means, a thing which he does not willingly wish to hear

about. I hope to get at it with the first help."

(OQ 1:286 = LM. p. 192)

       * This was a total eclipse of the moon, which occurred at 9.0 p.m. Aug. 29th.

It seems probable that it was at this time, and in connection with the mathematical conversations, that Swedenborg contemplated showing the King the MS. of his new method of calculation. Though Vallerius and Benzelius had perhaps persuaded him not to print it, he had not given up the hope of presenting it to the King. At any rate, among his manuscripts, we have a copy of it, very neatly written and containing a dedication to the King, dated "Karlsgraf 1718 and which reads as follows:

"Almighty and very gracious King:

       "That I come before your Majesty's eyes with a reckoning

which has its turn at 8 instead of the ordinary reckoning

which has its turn at 10, this I should not do of my own

presumption were it not that the good pleasure which was

formerly shown at a like reckoning extending to 64, assures

me that it will be graciously received. The turn is set at 8

for the purpose of



making use of letters, since it is not so easy to procure new

numbers. The use of this octoral reckoning, I have no need to

depict before your Majesty, who has a better understanding of

it and is better able to set forth the most difficult things

contained in it, than any one I can mention; and I present

it, not as to a king, but as to a profound Mathematicus, with

the fear that something will be found to which I have not

given sufficient thought. I remain,

              Your Majesty's

       My very gracious Lord's

              Most humble servant, EMANUEL SWEDBERG" (See LM. p. 200)

The beautiful and ornate way in which this work was written out by Swedenborg suggests that it was intended for a royal presentation; and yet, perhaps Swedenborg hesitated to present it after all, and it is perhaps to this hesitation that he refers in his letter to Benzelius, who had plainly expressed himself as opposed to this novelty. He writes that he was "unwilling, at the present time, to ask [the King] anything which would seem like an innovation."

The same hesitation, however, would not apply to a companion MS., which, from the way in which it is written in clean copy, was also intended or the King's eye. It is entitled "A New Theory concerning the Going and Stoppage of the Earth and the Planets, or some proofs that the Earth's Course is ever faster and faster; that Winter and Summer days might well become longer and longer, even to the world's last time; shown by Emanuel Swedberg." It was a complete rewriting of an earlier draft which Swedenborg had written out in Stockholm, in the Spring of 1717, while waiting for a summons from Polhem. He had probably intended to print the revised work in Upsala but was perhaps prevented by lack of money. This, moreover, would account for his remarks as to the King's dislike to hear of requests for financial support.

After the launching of the Luren some other smaller vessels had been carried overland about the same time Swedenborg returned to his work at Karlsgraf. He is now confident of being occupied with congenial work for some years. He hopes, when the sluices are commenced at Trollhattan to have sole charge of the building of one of them, and he hopes also to receive more pay.

(OQ. 1:286: LM. p. 193)

And now we come to the story of the reputed engagement between Swedenborg and Emerentia Polhem. The story, as it has come down to us, is written in a note dated 1789, and as an addition to Robsahm's Memoirs of Swedenborg. The story is that Swedenborg, when at Stiernsund as Polhem's pupil in Mathematics in 1716, fell deeply in love with Emerentia who later married Ruckerskiold - but as she was a little over 12 1/2 years old, she would not consent to any engagement. Therefore, Polhem gave her to Swedenborg in a written contract which she had to sign. She grieved so over this that her brother [aged 17] stole the contract from Swedenborg. The latter's daily comfort was to read it, and therefore it was soon missed. Polhem wished to renew the paper but Swedenborg, seeing Emerentia's sorrow, gave up his claim and left the house with an oath never again to think of any woman, whereupon he commenced his foreign journey. [Swedenborg did not leave Sweden until June 1721.] "This, in short" the note ends, is all that one can say for certain on this matter."       (ACSD 162C; Doc. 1:50)



This account, which contains several known inaccuracies, is confined to an occurrence said to have taken place between April and December 1718, when Swedenborg was very busily occupied with his canal, transport and literary work.

The only account we have from Swedenborg himself remotely touching on this matter is in a letter to Benzelius, dated September 14, 1718:

       "Polhem's oldest daughter* is betrothed to a gentleman

of the court, named Manderstrom; I wonder what people will

say of this since this is my post. His second daughter is, in

my opinion, much prettier."       

(N. 1:286 = LM. p. 193)

       * Maria, who was then in her 21st year and was married two months after the date of Swedenborg's letter.

Swedenborg's indirect testimony is given originally by Tuxen, of whom we have only an English translation, who presents Swedenborg as saying, in 1769, that "once in his youth he had been on the road to matrimony, King Charles XII having recommended the famous Polhem to give him his daughter." To a question, he added: "She would not have me as she had promised herself to another person,"       (Doc. 2: 437)

The above is the whole evidence. It indicates merely that Charles XII had suggested an engagement between Polhem's elder daughter Maria and Emanuel Swedenborg, but that the former was already betrothed at the time, or soon afterwards. In any case, Swedenborg did not seem at all affected. Emerentia, in his opinion, was "much prettier." These last words, written on September 14th - Swedenborg separated from Polhem in the following November - quite preclude the possibility of the signed and stolen contract with Emerentia, though they may account for the story that has grown up around it. See ACSD 163A.

At Vereborg, Swedenborg wrote the Rise and Fall of Lake Wenner. See p 210 below.

King Charles's words about the Daedalus Hyperboreus evidently had some effect in hastening the appearance of the long past due No. VI. After finishing his work at Stromstad, Swedenborg evidently received leave of absence; for, in a day or two, after September 14th, he went to Brunsbo where he stayed for three weeks, which he occupied by having Daedalus no. IV printed at Skara. The number consisted of 16 pages, like no. II, but unfortunately it lacked plates, although more than one is referred to in the text, Skara had no resources for the making of plates, and Swedenborg was in a hurry to present the printed Daedalus to the King.       (Doc. 1:162)

       It contents are mainly mathematical. The first article

describes a machine invented by Polhem to show the parabolic

curve made by a shot, and refers to one of the imprinted

plates. In the beginning of this article, Swedenborg gives

evidence of the high esteem in which he held Charles XII as a

practical scientist. "During the time of our great Monarch,"

he says, ". . .Sweden has widely famed advantage arising from

the many men who are prudent and experienced in such matters

as concern artillery, mechanics and shipbuilding; and this

must be ascribed to the great understanding possessed in

these matters by his Majesty himself." (DH. VI:2)



       The first article is, as usual, written by Swedenborg;

but it presents Polhem's idea; the rest of the number,

however, is entirely Swedenborg's own. First, he gives some

short-cut methods of reckoning the number of bullets

contained in a pyramid - a useful thing for gunners to know

in those trying days.

       Then follows "an experiment or trial whereby

shipbuilding can be advanced." Here again, a figure is

referred to, which unfortunately is not printed. The article

opens with a paragraph which might have been written today:

       "As regards shipbuilding, it has now been brought to so

high a state by so many years' experience and by the

investigations of clever men, that it might seem presumptuous

to offer to make an improvement or addition. But the answer

is given that no mechanical art has reached so high as not to

fall far short of perfection or of the impossibility of

betterment, so long as the world has men who have

understanding, judgment and experience. But in some cases,

such improvement comes from blind luck . . . in others, it is

hastened by geometry and its aids. . . The art is still in

its development."       (DH. VI: 6)

       The article is designed to show how to determine the

proper position of the masts, the ballast; and to calculate

the forces of the sails. It was afterwards rewritten in Latin

and published with a plate in Amsterdam in 1721.

       The next article in Daedalus VI contains Swedenborg's

first references to the anatomy of the body. It is entitled

"Arguments showing that our vital force consists mostly of

little vibrations, that is, tremulations." This preliminary

essay confines itself to stating nine rules with brief

comments. Swedenborg gives these rules because he recognizes

the novelty of his position:

       "Before what is unusual and unknown can be made

credible," he says, "it is necessary to establish some fixed

and indubitable rules according to which the theory ought to

be proved." Then follow his rules:

1. Hard bodies are subject to tremulation by a slight touch.

2. The best medium for tremulation is a stretched membrane,

e.g., a chord.

3. The next best are hard bodies and then soft.

4. A tremulation in one membrane will cause a tremulation in

another which is tuned to the same key.

5. Air tremulation goes in rings and is heard on all sides.

6. The heavier the atmosphere, the slower the tremulation,

and vice versa.

Thus, they are slow in water, in air quicker; in ether still

quicker; in solar substance from the sun to us, in an

instant. "In the very finest atmosphere, there is probably no

time which can correspond to the undulation."

[This is Swedenborg's first mention of four atmospheres.]

7. One tremulation does not interfere with another.

8. In tremulations, the angle of refraction is equal to the

angle of incidence.

9. There are millions of varieties in tremulations.

On the basis of these simple rules, Swedenborg then proceeds

to show that "much of our vital force consists in

tremulations," a doctrine which he never gave up even in

later years.



       This part of the article lays down in general the means

which the different sensations are effected, and holds that

they all go to the membranes of the brain, which, being

tense, readily receive them. To the same mechanism he

ascribes antipathy, for thoughts produce different

tremulations which may be distinguished by the mind as words

are distinguished by the ear (see above, p. 103).

In November of the next year, Swedenborg, referring to his finished work on Tremulation, informs us that in preparing this work

"I made myself acquainted in the most exact way with the

anatomy of the nerves and membranes, and so proved the

harmony thereof in respect to the fine geometry of

tremulations and much else where I later found myself in

agreement with Baglivi's opinions."

(OQ, 1:299 = LM.       p. 216; see ibid. 297= 27)

The opinion to which reference is here made is that set forth in Baglivi's De Fibre Motrice, the central doctrine of which is that to the animated dura mater must be ascribed the whole empire of the body. In later years Swedenborg put this empire not in the dura nor even in the pia meter but in what he calls the piissima mater which constitutes the simple cortex.

It will thus be seen that Swedenborg was first led to anatomy by considering the nature of life; and so his first studies were on the brain and nerves. He also studied Borelli's De Motu       Animalium, where all the animal motions are held to be mechanical. It is of interest to note in this connection that it was Borelli from whom Polhem drew most of his anatomical knowledge, though Leeuwenhoek "the curious Hollander" was not unknown to him. (Doc. 1:317; Bring, Polhem p. 91)

       The last article in Daedalus VI, and the last article to

be printed in this journal, was on a purely mathematical

subject, and even more than the others is by no means clear

in the absence of the plate to which it refers. Swedenborg

doubtless intended to print the plates for this number later.

Perhaps they were actually printed; for, immediately after

Daedalus VI appeared, Swedenborg, referring to the last

article, writes, "I have sent this with accompanying figures

to his Majesty."

(Enestrom p. 6; OQ 1:287 = LM. p. 198)

Summing up Swedenborg's mathemetical contributions to Daedalus Hyperboreus, Enestrom, in his Emanuel Swedenborg sasom matemtiker, Stockholm, 1890, says that, as compared with the knowledge of mathematics in Sweden at that time, they bear witness to a many-sided knowledge, but yet do not contain anything new or particularly remarkable from a mathematical point of view. In one or two cases, he attempts to anticipate matters which, on nearer examination, are not mathematically tenable, and also "to bring forward mathematical and philosophical speculations which lead away from an exact investigation of the subject of investigation rather than facilitate it." (p. 7)

Thus we bid farewell to the Daedalus Hyperboreus. With all the complaints directed against it by Swedenborg himself, it was a noble venture, the venture of a daring mind which had the vision of the means for Sweden's true greatness, and for the progress of mankind itself; which joined itself to the progressive spirits of the age and did not hesitate to spend its substance as well as its time and labor in work which few appreciated.



From the first number of this journal in December 1715 to the sixth and last in October 1718, Swedenborg bore the entire burden of planning, the actual writing and the whole of the financial expense.* It was but a fitting tribute to his memory when, in 1910, the Vetenskapskademien Societeten in Upsala published in magnificent form a facsimile edition of the Daedalus Hyperboreus as being essentially the first Transactions of the Society itself.

* It would appear that the cost of printing and paper was about 45 dal.k.m. per 8 pages (about Kr.23 of our money). This did not include the plates. ACSD 55

It was during this visit home to publish Daedalus VI, that Bishop Swedberg gave his children his portion of his first wife's property upon which occasion, Swedenborg again began to experience something of the ill-will of his brother-in-law Unge; see above, p. 176. However, he stayed home only three weeks when he returned to his work.       (Doc. 1:304)

Whether Swedenborg again met Charles XII is not known with certainty but it is most likely that he did, and, indeed, that he came into his disfavor. At any rate, on October 3d, his father writes of him that on the fifth he will leave Brunsbo "for Stromstad where he says he is always most kindly received by the King"; and, on the very day that he left Brunsbo, Swedenborg writes to Benzelius:       (Doc. 1:162)

His Majesty is probably coming to Wennersborg at the end of

this month when the army is to be reviewed. I am going to see

if I cannot get leave to go with it to Norway"

(OQ. 1:287 = LM. p. 199)

At Karlsgraf, Swedenborg had been working among the ignorant Russian prisoners, but in July and August and September he had been working in the midst of the fine Swedish soldiers, and often under the eye of his Here King who was so gracious to him. What wonder if, when he returned to Stromstad, he was enamored of the work. Who shall say with what enthusiasm he was fired by the example and the words of the Lion of the North, who, with all Europe secretly against him, was yet feared and treated with respect!

Charles led his troops from Stromstad into Norway on October 25th, and if he reviewed the army in Wennersborg, it must have been a few days earlier. Either at Stromstad or Wennersborg, Swedenborg saw him for the last time. It had been Swedenborg's intention, as already noted, to see if he might not be permitted to accompany the army to Norway. Yet, on December 8th, that is to say, less than five weeks after he had written this wish and intention, he writes in an entirely opposite sense

"Thank God," he says, "I have escaped the campaign in Norway,

which, sure enough, would have caught me had I not used

diplomacy in order to escape."       

(Nordberg, p. 677; OQ 1:288 = LM. p. 202)

What lies behind this complete volte face? Doubtless, we shall never know. Did Swedenborg simply change his mind? Had Polhem persuaded him that his place was to remain in Karlsgraf? Had the King graciously consented to his entering the army as an engineer, and had Polhem's earnest entreaty induced him to use diplomacy to get out of the appointment?



It does, however, seem indicated that during the latter part of October, Swedenborg came into great disfavor with the King. Years later he writes in his Spiritual Diary:

"Many transactions between me and Charles XII were recounted,

and it was then manifestly shown that the Lord's Providence

had been in the most minute particulars . . . also that

unless the state of Charles XII had been changed from good

into anger one person would wholly have perished" (n. 4704).

Now this change in the royal favor could have happened only in October, for prior to leaving Bohuslan for Brunsbo, Swedenborg was in high favor. This is shown also by the testimony of his father, who, writing on October 3d, says that his son tells him "he is always most kindly received by the King." What then was the cause of this suddenly developed anger on the part of the King? Surely he was not angry with Swedenborg for desiring to join the army! Was he angry because Swedenborg used diplomacy to escape the campaign to Norway? Had Swedenborg interposed some protests about the state of the country? the conduct of Goertz? the size of the taxes? And then, how shall we account for Swedenborg's expecting financial help for the Daedalus from the King, even after they had met for the last time? or Swedenborg's laudation of Charles XII in his Miscellaneous Observations, and in his letter to Nordberg many years later? and still later, in his work on Rational Psychology. Of course, these are intellectual appraisements, but they have a strong suggestion of genuine affection.
(Doc. 1:162; Miss.Obs, p. 113; Nordberg. p. 601; R.Psych, pp. 211, 226, 249)

       Charles XII was shot before Frederickshall on November

30th, and the       news arrived in Stockholm on December 5th; but

Swedenborg at that date was still ignorant of it.

Swedenborg had left the work at Karlsgraf in the beginning of December, 1718, and the last news he had heard from the army was that on November 27th, the Swedes had taken one of the redoubts at Frederickshall.

In the peaceful atmosphere of Brunsbo, he at once settles down to literary work. He sends to the Skara Printer his Stoppage of the Earth, now rewritten for the third time. He also prepares the material for Daedalus VII, but holds it "until his Majesty supplies offerings"; indeed, he has the material for no. VIII also, finishing the second year. But neither VII nor VIII ever appeared, and we may presume that some at any rate of the material prepared for them was afterwards incorporated in Miscellaneous Observations (OQ. 1:283       LM. p. 203)

Meanwhile, Swedenborg heard of Charles's death about December 4th or 10th,* Neither he nor Polhem realized at first the effect of this death on the canal work, but Swedenborg did realize that all hopes of getting literary support from his late Hero were gone. The Stoppage of the Earth was



in the prass at Skara, perhaps with the Preface to the new dead King; but Swedenborg addressed himself to the new King, the King Consort, b or it was not until May 1720 that Frederick was crowned king. This he does in a Preface to the work, dated December 16th, wherein he also takes the occasion to join in the great general grief

"which has come upon us by the sudden death of our glorious

Monarch; but, on the other hand, to express great pleasure in

the Swedish Kingdom's good fortune in the person of your

Royal Highness on whom, by the gift of God Himself, it now

devolves to be a comfort to our gracious Queen, a Protector

of her Crown and Kingdom, and a new means of help for our

general welfare. May the God of heaven grant you further

prosperity." (Malm., 1: 254)

       * The Swedish generals were assembled in Uddevalla when they heard that Ulrica Eleonora had been proclaimed Queen on December 7th; but they refused to recognize her until Frederick, who was present with them, gave assurance both for his wife and himself, that absolutism would be abolished and the Diet called to hear witness to this, They then recognized the Queen and proclaimed her to the army. This was December 9th or 10th, and the news must have reached Skara very quickly. (Fryx. 30:25, 21)

He then sets forth his object in the work, as being to show why Sweden, "which in primitive times was a Canaan and Paradise," has become what it now is. The learned Puffendorf* and others have held that Sweden was inhabited in Noah's time,* but it is wholly unknown what induced men to exchange their golden land for our iron rocks, their bright and lovely summers for our stormy winters, unless the land's general condition was different than it now is.

"Hence, therefore, I will show the reasons for the guessings

of others, such as our late Olof Rudbeck brings forward in

his Atlantica, and that these guessings are not poetic

effusions and fables that Sweden may formerly have been a

paradise and a dwelling for the gods; that Pallas, Flora,

Venus, and other pleasure goddesses might have been born and

brought up here and have lived with Swedish women as one

among them; and that later, from here, they betook themselves

farther to the south in Europe." He hopes thus to show the

truth of what has been considered myth, to please the King

and, lastly, "to win the favor and applause of the learned


       * This seems to be an error for Rudbeck or Loccenius. These writers, however, do not speak of the inhabitants of Sweden at the time of Noah, but state merely that after the confusion of tongues, the scythians (descended from Japheth) found their way to Sweden. So far as we know Puffendorf says nothing whatever on the early inhabitants of Sweden.

       Olaf Rudbeck, in his Atlantica, had endeavored to show,

on mythological and etymological grounds, that Sweden was the

famed Atlantis, the home of the Greek heroes and deities, and

that they migrated thence to southern Europe. As to Sweden's

climate, however, Rudbeck says nothing more of it save that

the Ancients were drawn to the land by the great healthiness

of its climate, as shown, inter alia, by the large number of

children commonly born from one mother. Swedenborg wished to

prove scientifically that the "guessings" that Sweden is the

Atlantis of the Ancients were justified because Sweden was

then a paradise. (Atlant. IV)



       In proof Swedenborg appear (1) to the ancient traditions

of a Golden Age, i.e., of a perpetual Spring which could come

only by the rapid rotation of the earth; (2) to the fact that

primitive creation was possible only in such a Spring; for,

he says, "creation was not effected without means; the one

means was the earth, the other, the warmth of the air of

which we are speaking." (3) A third proof is gathered from

the great age of the patriarchs, which would infer that their

years were shorter; Swedenborg enters much less into the

details of this argument than he did in his first draft.

       The fourth reason is drawn from the flood of which he

gives a purely natural cause. "From our new theory," he says,

"it follows first that the great heat played on the water and

separated all the like from the unlike the fat from the wet,

the salt from the unsalted, and thereby made a crust and

vault over the water; and when this heat was lessened, all

this water shrinks together. . . Whence come great empty

spaces between the crust and the water. Then the crust falls

into the deep, first here and then there. The water beneath

would then come up and we should have the flooding water and

therefore rain." This cause, Swedenborg finds to agree with

the event as described in God's Word: "By guessing, one goes

no further than others have gone by their guessing." A fifth

proof is the decrease in all countries of that fertility

which existed in the Golden Age.

       Then comes a particular proof, taken from Sweden.

Rudbeck is cited as authority that Sweden was formerly "a

dwelling place for the gods . . . a place of which the poets

sang their fables . . . In a word, it was a land rich of

people, fruitful and green, beautiful as a Canaan." But since

the country is not such now, it has been "supposed that the

late Olaf Rudbeck spoke more from blind love of his land than

from any truth coming from the searching into causes." But if

the earth's revolutions were then quicker, all is clear. The

land would then be like a Savoy or an Italy.

       The seventh is a new proof which does not appear in the

work as first written, namely, a proof from the population of

America. According to the new theory, Greenland would have

been in perpetual Spring, and would afford an easy passage to


       * To this proof, an unnumbered proof showing the possibility of a perpetual Spring, provided the earth were quicker in its revolutions, when winter would not have time entirely to destroy the heat of summer, and the latter could not avoid being made mild by the cold of winter. This additional proof refers to a diagram or figure which, however, probably owing to the inadequacy of Skara's resources, was never printed. The original figure in Swedenborg's own hand was discovered bound in a copy of the work - now in the possession of the Linnaean Society, and which had perhaps belonged to Linnaeus's father-in-law, Joh. Moraeus Swedenborg's old tutor. A photo, of this drawing was published in the New Philosophy for Jan.-April, 1927; see also pp. 170-74.

       The eighth proof is drawn from the former height of

Sweden, as shown by the fact that shells and other signs of

the presence of the sea are found on heights sixty to eighty

ells above the sea,



as at Uddevalla and Stromstad and also put holes with a

projecting rock above. If the course of the earth was

quicker, so also would be that of the moon, hence tides, if

due to the moon, would be almost constantly at their flood

and the land covered with water. However, Swedenborg adds,

this needs more proof which will be given in a special


       Then follow some new proofs derived from a consideration

of the planets. The material for these proofs has been

gathered from Gregory's Astronomy, from which Swedenborg was

engaged in making notes during his stay in Brunsbo and

Starbo. (Codex 86: 232seq.)

       The final argument refers to what the Word says

concerning the Last Judgment. But here Swedenborg shows a

caution in marked contract to the statements of his first

draft. "But whether this applies to the destruction of

Jerusalem," he now says, "is left unanswered. The words

immediately following tell us of an end to everywhere."

       Yet he continues with a description of how, according to

his new theory, the earth could be darkened and the seas roar

from the strife between summer and winter; and he concludes:

"But how, at the end, a planet bursts into a thousand

particles, is scattered in fire, and by a stoppage comes

again to its former atmosphere and condition, this Almighty

God alone knows, and it would be daring presumption to make

any investigation into it."

Despite these words, however, it is clear that Swedenborg saw a difficulty in respect to the formation of a new earth, and though he would not reject the teaching of the Word because he did not understand it, yet his whole philosophy even as thus far formed precluded the possibility of God's acting without means, and means in order.

Before bidding his reader adieu, Swedenborg adds a shorter chapter in which he states his objection to the theory propounded many years ago by William Burnet, the English Bishop. From which objections it may be seen

that "nothing should be approved which does not agree with

God's Word and sound reason. If this our conjecture can give

some light or suggestion of what is truer, we have then

attained the object of our desire."

Before Swedenborg heard of Charles XII's death, it had been his intention to travel through the mining district in order to pursue his researches into the nature of fire, and this determination would, of course, be confirmed as it developed that Charles's death meant the end of the Canal, nay, the end of Polhem as a man of prominence, and the close of Swedenborg's life as a practical engineer. That death may indeed be said to make the close of the first period in the life of Swedenborg's preparation; that period in which practical and ultimate things were to be his most pressing business. From this point, and for the next few years, he is to develop more as a scientific philosopher, occupied mainly in inquiring into the phenomena which so often came to his notice, particularly as seen in metals and iron working. The commencement or opening of this new scene was his travel to various smithies, with the object of acquiring information for the formation of a satisfactory theory of fire.



Polhem did indeed hope to go on with the canal works, and presumably Swedenborg hoped with him; but it developed early in 1719 that there was neither the will nor the means to continue for though the Diet was willing to leave the continuation of the canal works to private capital, times were too hard and the value of money too uncertain. (Riksksdag., pp. 318, 539-40; OQ. 1:289)

Before Swedenborg left Brunsbo to examine the mining regions, he had the pleasure of a Christmas visit from his brother-in-law and family, and it was doubtless during this visit that, in conversation with Benzelius, he learned

"the noteworthy fact that most mountain ridges follow the

compass and the northern line according to the meridian of

their country, so that when the sun is at its height, its

rays and the shadows of the trees fall according to the

ridges - a fact [we are quoting from the Height of Waters,

published in March 1719] which was brought to my attention by

my brother-in-law, the Venerable Herr Librarian Doctor Eric

Benzelius, and which has also given me occasion to think on

this subject much more; for which," Swedenborg adds, "as for

all other encouragement in Mathesis, I proffer due thanks."

(OQ 1:288 = LM. p. 202)

It was perhaps as a result of conversations with Benzelius who would be eager to know the particulars of Swedenborg's work - and even at the suggestion of Benzelius that Swedenborg wrote that interesting little tract: "Information on the Dock, the Sluice Work, and the Salt Work," which a description of Swedenborg's work with Polhem. It was published not only anonymously but also without title-page, though it does have the imprint of 1719. It was printed at Skara* before Swedenborg left for the mining districts.

* In a copy that belonged to Eric Benzelius, after the "1719" are written the words "mense Januario," - January, the month when Swedenborg was in Brunsbo. Probably Benzelius received his copy while visiting there.

At the end of this little work is a political reference which cannot have escaped contemporary readers:

"Had as many ducats been spent there [i.e., on the Dock] as

are now being used for the mint tokens [i.e., to redeem them

at fifty per cent devaluation], yet with its manifold

interests it would have paid for itself."
Swedenborg is here alluding to the economy that had been exercised by the Admiralty perhaps as an actual necessity whereby, as Polhem intimates, the work did not at first turn out so well as had been expected (see above, p. 156)

       In this tract, Swedenborg states that the dock was nearly completed

"so that what is left consists only and solely in the setting

of the lock gates, and in some internal construction which

does not so well belong to the actual dock."

It does not appear, however, that the Government was then

going on with the work. The dock was pumped dry in August

1718 so that work on the blasting could then go on

uninterruptedly. Yet, in 1720, the completion was taken over

by the Admiralty, and the dock was not ready for use until

September 1724. (Bring.Pol., pp. 51, 219)



It may be that the printing of this account of the door work was intended, perhaps unconsciously, as a contribution to the continuance and completion of the work; and this motive is tolerably apparent, in the article on the Karlsgraf Sluice.

This article commences:

"As many persons desire to know the object and advantage of

sluices in Karlsgraf and Trollhattan, the following short

account of them is given."

After speaking of the inevitable losses incurred in

transmitting from boat to cart and vice versa, he speaks of

the history of the canal: "In King Carl Gustaf's time, and

likewise in King Carl XII's, much thought was given to this,

so that a Dutch master was engaged who measured off the sites

both there and between Venner and Hjelmar, and plotted them

and the ways around, on maps which are now preserved in the

Royal Chancery Collegium." Then, with pardonable pride, he

adds: "Since the Dutchman did not believe he was able to

undertake so difficult a work, it seemed to him that the best

way to get out of the work with the best reputation was by

giving a great estimate of the cost, which had the effect of

frightening them from the undertaking. . . And now Councillor

of Commerce Christopher Polhem has been newly commanded to

see after this matter, and give his thoughts thereto; and,

when he saw that it was not only feasible but also possible

as regards cost, especially as no material would be required

from foreign lands, it was resolved that the work should be

taken up which has now seen its beginning in Karlsgraf . . .

where a lock constructed of wood has now reached the greatest

part of its completion. And as long as the others in

Trollhattan have not been started through lack of means, this

work will serve for the time being, both because posterity

will see in it the manner and possibility, and also it will

be of use in shortening the land journey." He concludes with

a few words describing the building of the look and the route

to Stockholm.

       The third article on Salt Works opens by referring to

the privileges granted to Polhem, "but because of the hard

times, and in view of the coinage and of the high cost of all

materials, and likewise because of insecure harbors during

war time, the work did not get its commencement.

       He then shows that not only was Spanish and German salt

imported into Sweden, but also salt made in England from the

same sea that washes the western coast of Sweden,

       "For what purpose must one buy in foreign lands," he

asks, "that which can better be made at home? and much

cheaper, especially in war times."

       He then gives the advantages of home-made salt: 1. The

assurance of a constant supply. 2. The keeping of the money

in the country. 3. Freedom from compulsion in war time; after

which he takes up and answers the objections.



After his tour of the mining regions, Swedenborg went to Stockholm, and on February 13th reported at the Bergscollegium. Apparently he merely reported. Charles XII, his Protector, was now dead, and it was probable that there was now manifested a disposition, at any rate on the part of some of the Assessors, to question Swedenborg's right to sit in the College.* He seems, however, to have handed in to the College a MS. containing "some new investigations in respect to fire." It would seem, therefore, that this work had been written during and as a result of his tour of the mining district, perhaps at Starbo, in January 1719. The only record we have of such a work is contained in a list of documents to be found among "Handlihgar till Vet. Societ. Historia" - most of them by Swedenborg. No. 5 of this list reads "La mechanique du feu of Svedenborg." Of the MS. itself, nothing is known.       (Hyde, no. 162)

* Perhaps partly because he had not served as Auscultant and Bergmastare, which were the usual preliminaries to an Assessorship in the Bergscollegium. (ASCD 225A = LM., p. 243)

It was, perhaps, a working up of the notes on Fire written in January 1718.*

* See above, p. 174; see also letter to the King, July 9, 1720 (LM., p. 241), where Swedenborg speaks of "that writing on Fire and Furnaces which in humility I entered in the Royal Bergscollegium a year ago," i.e., in November 1719 (see below, p. 203).

Meanwhile, Swedenborg was busily engaged in preparing for the press his Height of Waters. In Stockholm also he met his father who was, of course, a Member of the Diet and was shortly to be made a member of that important and dominating branch of the Government, the Secret Committee (Utskottet).

       In passing, we may note that at this Diet, Bishop

Swedberg, on February 4, 1718, declared in the House of the

Clergy that while the Formula Concordia was useful as an

explanation of the Creed, yet it should not be required of

the Queen to swear to it or to hold it as symbolical. He was

opposed by the Archbishop. A few days later, he spoke in

favor of religious freedom, appealing to England as an

example, and again the Archbishop opposed him.

(Riksdag., pp. 402, 408)

       Stockholm was in a fever of excitement over the special

commission that was conducting the trial of the hated Baron

Goertz. There was also the excitement and confusion resulting

on the determination of the people to substitute a more

responsible government for the previous absolutism.

       At the end of the preceding January, the Diet had

elected Ulrica Eleonora Queen, but many questions were yet to

be discussed before a new fundamental law could be adopted.

And after this, came the discussion on the economic and financial situation. An important part of this discussion was what to do with the token money; of this, there was outstanding over 25 1/2 million tokens s.m., besides over 2 million notes.** A number of solutions were suggested in the form of



memorials addressed to the Secret Committee, among which is a long document dated February 27th, which according to the Minutes of the Secret Committee, Emanuel Swedberg was thought to have given in." The memorial suggests an ingenious scheme whereby the tokens might be redeemed without disturbing the country's finances. Those who wished payment of the full face value were to receive obligations entitling them to four per cent in specie every year for twenty-five years. (Riksdagarne, p. 16)

* According to Bain (Chas. XII, p. 307), L3,724,050 worth of notes was outstanding.

Those who were willing to remit 25 per cent of the face value

would receive obligations entitling them to 10 per cent for

ten years.

Those remitting one-half, to receive payment of 20 per cent

for five years, and those remitting 75 per cent, to be paid

in two yearly payments. To raise the money for these

payments, the memorial proposed the sale of all unneeded

metals in the arsenal, of all unneeded prize ships, the sale

or mortgage of certain crown lands and houses, an export tax

on specified iron goods, tar pitch, etc.; an import tax on

certain specified articles, in addition to the regular

customs, and a contribution by the Crown of one-fifth of its

revenue from the copper mines. (Ibid., pp. 6, 537)

The memorial was not adopted but instead the tokens were devaluated at 50 per cent. It is not in Swedenborg's handwriting, but it is not improbable that he is the author.

On February 19th, Goertz was executed after a trial noted more for its swiftness than for its justice. What were Swedenborg's sympathies as regards the discredited minister is not known. Perhaps his Karlskrona Spy document was directed against Goertz. We can be sure, however, that Swedenborg's sympathies were with his old patron Count Gustaf Cronhjelm (see above, p. 72) who pleaded for a more legal trial.

On February 26th, Charles XII was buried (Nordberg, p. 691).

Having no particular business in the Bergscollegium, Swedenborg, at the end of February or the beginning of March* again visited his brother-in-law in Upsala. Here, as on his last previous visit, he at once commences to put one of his little works in print. This time it is the Height of Waters, a work closely connected with The Earth's Stoppage. And just as he had dedicated the companion work, published in Skara but a few weeks earlier, to the prospective King, her husband, so now he dedicated the present work to the Queen as an offering on the day of her crowning in the ancient city of Upsala.

* Probably in February. This would account for the none delivery of Polhem's letter addressed to Swedenborg in Stockholm (OQ. 1:289).

Toward the middle of March, Upsala witnessed a great influx of the highest persons in the land - the Queen and her Consort, the Count, the Diet, including Bishop Jesper Swedberg, were all there for the solemn act of crowning on March 17th, and it was in honor of this great event, the last of its kind in Upsala, that Swedenborg's new book was dedicated. (Familjebok, 30:942)



It was entitled:

       On the Height of Water

       and the strong Ebb and Flow

       of the Primeval World

       Proofs from Sweden


       Emanuel Swedenborg

       Assessor in the Royal Bergscollegium

Then follows the Dedication:

"All powerful and very gracious Queen!

       "I present myself before your Royal Majesty's throne in

deepest humility and in company with the many thousands who

wish your Majesty good fortune in her Government; and now one

sees how the learned here in Upsala bring forward their palms

and cast them down at your Majesty's feet, and in every way

give sign of their joy. I come forward among them with

something which is drawn from their Parnassus; that is, with

a page of new proofs as to how in primitive days Sweden was

covered over and diminished by water, and as to how, with the

falling away of the waters, she afterwards became larger and

larger even to the present time, the time of your Majesty's


       "It is my inmost prayer to God that the royal crown

which today with the joy and gladness of all is set on your

Majesty's head, may be as firm and constant as Parnassus

itself, and like the starry crown fixed in heaven, may give

its light for God's glory, your Majesty's undying fame, your

subjects' ceaseless gladness, and also for the flourishing

and advancement of the literary art.

       "Upsala, May 17, 1719

              I remain,

              Your Royal Majesty's

              My most Gracious Queen's

              most devoted and humble subject

                     Em. SWEDENBORG"

The Preface opens with the statement that God's Word gives us

our first information concerning the flood which covered the

whole world and, had not Noah been provided with a machine to

navigate the waters, our earth would have become an

uninhabited waste. No one denies the flood, but yet worldly

wisdom wishes to have a say in the matter, and to search out

its traces, and since this confirms the truth, it is useful.

"My curiosity in this direction," says Swedenborg, "has also

been awakened, and from our northern lands I have found many

confirmations of the truth. The work will at least have the

advantage of showing those in southern lands that our north

has more proofs than they themselves have."

The first proof is from the hill Kinnekulle, the position of which, between two mountains, indicates that the waters have rushed in from two sides and have here met and deposited their debris, as seen in the regular strata of the mountain. Here - as pointed out by Prof. Nathorst - Swedenborg has failed to realize that all these hills were formed at the same time.       (OQ 1:XXI)



The second proof is from the water lines of adnetddrg and

Billingen. These lines, however, are the demarcation between

strata. (Ibid.)

The third, from the north and south direction of the mountain

ranges, due to the prevailing winds and tides being from east

to west and west to east; any sediment then, which reached an

obstruction, would tend to collect in a line north and south.

The fourth and fifth proofs are from the whale bones found

far inland near Skara, and the mussels, snails, etc.

Swedenborg here refers to his experience of 1709 when the

whale bones were shipped to Upsala (see above, p. 30) and to

his investigations at Uddervalla and Stromstad (see above, p.

141) and the petrifications he found on Mount Billingen in

West Gothland, as noted in his memoranda on Soils and muds.

(see above, p. 117)

The sixth proof is the pot holes indicating the grinding

action of stones set in motion by swirling motions, and which

he had observed during his investigations for salt stations

(see above, p. 141), and also at Trollhattan.

The seventh proof is from the large stones which exist

everywhere, testifying to the action of water in a deep

abyss. He here relates an experience in Kinnskulle when a

violent rain removed large stones more than half a mile.

The eighth proof is from the strata of mountains as observed

in Helsingborg, Kinnekulle, and Bllingen, as showing that

they were deposited in water. Here Swedenborg refers to a

work by Hjarne to the same effect.

The ninth and tenth, from the falling of the North Sea and

from the uneven shape of the ground, indicating the action of

water in its ebb and flow.

The eleventh proof is from the ebb and flow of nature.

With this, Swedenborg ends the work, but there are some indications going to show that considerable haste was observed in putting it through the press probably to have out by the coronation day.

The work gives no indications of completeness, and probably when 1 ark or 16 pages had been printed, the author decided to issue it at this convenient place. At any rate, it is not surprising that a little later a new and enlarged edition was published n Stockholm.

The Queen followed her coronation day by marks of grace to

the University, including among others the granting of

doctorates to four professors, one of whom was Eric

Benzelius. The promotion took place on March 20th, three days

after the coronation, and in the Queen's presence. (UUH 3:5)

It was not long after this honor to Benzelius that an equally great honor was given to Bishop Swedborg's wife and family by elevating them to the privileged class of noblemen.*

* On the same date, the same honor was given to the wife and children of Bishops Spegel, Steuk,       Rudeen and Lund (ASCD 175A).



The Swedish nobility consisted of three degrees: Counts,

Barons (Friherren) and Knights (Adel). Prior to Charles XI,

the few Counts had been the absolutely dominating influence

in the House of Nobles; during the reign of Charles XI they

had been reduced to impotence, partly by the King's

assumption of autocracy, and partly by the "Reduction"

whereby they had lost the greater pant of their wealth. They

continued impotent during the autocracy of Charles XII; but

with the reaction after his death, they hoped to regain

something of their old power. Instead of this, however, the

great body of the Nobles took matters into their own hand and

asserted an equality with the Counts and Barons which was

afterwards retained.

In a document dated May 23, 1719, the Queen elevated to the rank of nobility the wife and children of Bishop Swedberg, in view of the latter's faithful and distinguished services; at the same time, she changed their name to Swedenborg and granted them the privilege of a coat of arms. The latter is described in this royal letter as follows:

       "A shield divided lengthwise into two like parts, the

right field being red and containing two silver keys placed

crosswise between two bars of silver the left field is

yellow, whereon is seen a black volcano, at the base of which

is an arrow of silver placed diagonally. On the upper part of

the shield is a blue 'Chett' with a golden bishop's hat

between two stars of silver. Above the shield stands an open

helmet, from which rises up a gilded lion between two great

laurel branches, the lion holding in his right paw a blue

key; the wreath and leafwork are of gold, silver, blue and

red."       (ACSD 174)

The arrow is taken from the crest of Dalecarlia, which consists of two crossed arrows surmounted by a crown. (Familjebok 5: 1139)

Mrs. Major Swedenborg of Gothenburg told me that a supposed ancestor of Jesper Swedberg was the Dane Stjerna of an old noble family, probably living in Skane; hence the two stars.       (NKTid. 1921: 186)

The volcano is taken from the crest of Falun. (Famieljebok 7: 1350) [Diagram of three mountains interlocking at their base.]

There can be no doubt that in the case of Bishop Swedberg who

was well liked by the queen, as he had been by her father,

this honor of nobility was freely conferred in recognition of

the father's services - all of which are recounted in the

warrant of nobility; but there is also doubt that at this

time an unprecedented number of men were elevated to noble

rank for political purposes - namely, to strengthen those in

the House of Nobles who were more or less displeased with the

extreme democracy of the new form of government which the

Queen had been compelled to sign, but the spirit or even the

letter of which she was always prone to neglect or break. At

any rate, that year witnessed the elevation of 12 men to

countship, 34 to baronetcy, and 125 to knighthood, including

Olaf Tilas (June 5), Benzelstierna and his three brothers

(June 25), Anders Swab (June 25), Olaf Rudbeck (July 10) and

v. Gedda (Dec. 22) - of Paris. Rosenadler (Upmark - May 15).

(Kleberg, p. 168s; Fryx, 30: 98)



After his visit to Upsala, Swedenborg returned to Brunsbo, and there devoted himself to literary work,* including the rewriting and enlarging of the Height of Waters, a lengthy treatise on Tremulation, besides other works which will be mentioned later. It was probably during this summer that Swedenborg made excursions to Lake Venner and there observed those remarkable phenomena in respect to the rising and falling of the lake of which he subsequently wrote; and also derived further information concerning them from farmers whose meadows had been flooded. At the same time, he made some interesting experiments to determine how much water flows from Lake Venner by its only one outlet. These experiments were conducted in the countryside at Rannomsbro, the bridge under which the whole of Venner's water flows in a state of calm before hurling itself into the raging whirl of Trollhattan. Under this bridge, he says, "I measured the length, depth, etc. [of the stream]. . . The velocity, I determined by means of chips and other things flowing down stream . . . . and I noticed that a chip will flow over it 3 ells (about 3 feet) every second." From all which observations, he made his calculations. He also engaged in the study of the brain by reading Willis, Vieussens and others even to the study of cerebral pathology. (Sc. and Phil. Tr. I:1:57, 58: Trem. p. 32)

* His studies probably included matter contained in Codex 86.

From Brunsbo he went to the "mining districts" - probably making Starbo his headquarters - and there wrote a very thorough treatment on Blast Furnaces, being the result of his journeys into these districts, and also of his experiences as the owner of smelting works (see above, pp. 193-94). For Experiments, see Miscellaneous Observations, p. 49.       (ACSD 204A)

After this literary work, he returned to Stockholm, arriving there at the end of September. Here, in the first days of November, he left his improved Height of Water with the censor for approval of publication, and soon it was approved and it was published in the first days of December, Swedenborg himself speaks of this second edition as follows:

       "I have improved the work which was published in Upsala

. . . and have added a number of clear proofs, and likewise

an undeniable demonstration as to how stones have been

removed in a deep sea; also demonstrating arguments with

respect to the changing of the northern horizon, and that it

is reasonable to believe that in former times Sweden was an

island." (ACSD 58. OQ. 1:292 = LM., p. 216)

We may add that, while this second edition essentially

preserves all the parts of the first edition, the chapters

are rearranged and the language added to or altered in a

greater or less degree. There are also additional chapters

dealing with inland seas and their fishes, many of which are

the same as the ocean fishes, river beds, black soil, the

falling of the Baltic and the remains of ships found far

inland, all being adduced as proofs of the contention that

Sweden was once under the ocean, and afterwards an island.

With regard to the proof from the remains of ships found far

inland, Prof. Nathorst observes that such remains have not

been observed by modern investigators. It may be noted in

this connection, that Swedenborg heard of these remains from

Polhem, either orally or



from his papers which were in Benzelius's possession, Polhem

studied the formations of the mountains in Switzerland and

the geologic stratifications in the Hartz and in Harwich,

England. This showed for him that England, Scotland, Ireland

and similar islands were formerly under water, and that the

English Channel was formerly land. From some ship rings which

lay fastened to mountains on the coasts of Gottland, far

above the sea, he concludes that the globe gradually became

higher, or that the water had sunk lower."       

(OQ. 1: XXIV; Bring, Polhem, p. 59)

With regard to the falling of the Baltic, Benzelius states

that Swedenborg was the first to publish this fact; but Prof.

Nathorst says he was preceded by Hjarne.       (OQ. 1: XXVII)

The special chapter dealing with the way in which great

stones can be moved at the bottom of a deep ocean should be

carefully studied, as its contention is again put forward in

Miscellaneous Observations where it caused some sharp

criticism on the part of a German professor.

The work ends with a chapter entitled "Reasonable Proofs in

support of the opinion of the late Doctor Olof Rudbeck, that

Sweden in heathen times was an island." This, Swedenborg

thinks, would follow from his theory; and so he identifies

Sweden with "the great island of Atlantis; the Hyperborean

Island; the Island of Asir or of the gods; the Island of the

Saints or of the Blessed; the Island of Manheim or Baldor;

Skano, Gothac; Ultima Thule or Thulo; which the late Doctor

Olof Rudbeck without difficulty and most commendably infers

from the writings of many; it can therefore hardly be doubted

that Sweden has been surrounded by water and become a

continent or connected with another country below the pole,

as the water fell and receded, and Neptune, by turning up his

rugged back, exposed from time to time his deep abyss to us

that we might inhabit it."

This book is the first to have the name "Swedenborg." The name, however, does not appear on the title-page as in the first edition but at the end of the Dedication.

A little note at the end of some copies of the work informs us that

"it is on sale at Bookbinder Dalbecks Widow's on Nygatan, for

8 ore s.m."

The work on Tremulations was handed in to the Royal Medical College on Friday, October 30th, presumably with a view to having it approved for publication but nothing has been heard of the MS. ever since. However, we shall again speak of this work a little later.

The work on Swedish Blast Furnaces was the first of a proposed series of works on Swedish mining works. It was submitted to the Bergscollegium on Tuesday, November 3d. Of it, Swedenborg writes:

       "What I have been working at is first an exact

description of our Swedish smelting and blast furnaces, and

second, a theory or investigation concerning fire and

hearths. With this, I first procured all that could be found

out from smelting charcoal burners, roasters,* smelting

masters, etc., whereon the theory is founded,



and hope to have made a number of discoveries therein which

in time will likely be shown to be useful; as, for example,

to be able to make fire in new stoves so that the wood and

charcoal which is [now] used in a day can give better heat

for six days. Vice President Hierns has given his entire

approval to this, and on demand, it can be shown in a test.

Today, I am handing the aforementioned work in to the

Bergscollegium" (ACSD 225A; OQ.1: 292 = LM., p. 215; p. 241)

       * roasters of ore.

And there in the Bergscollegium - although the College "seems to have received it favorably" - it remained unnoticed until the opening years of the twentieth century when an investigator in one of Sweden's numerous mining archives came across a fragment of a manuscript entitled "On Swedish Blast Furnaces, by Emanuel Swedenborg." It soon developed that this was an exceedingly badly written copy of a larger work which, after much searching, was finally located in the archives of the Kommercekollegium which had taken over the archives of the Bergscollegium, where it had been deposited by Emanuel Swedenborg on November 3d, 1719. The volume was bound in leather and consisted of 87 folio pages which were rapidly moldering. The discoverer then had it printed in Noraskogs Archiv - a journal devoted to Swedish mining history - volume IV, pp. 201-32. (ACSD 225A = LM. p. 241; Noraskogs Archiv, IV:201)

This work constitutes the very first work of its kind in

Swedish literature, but unfortunately it lacks the plates to

which it refers. It is probable, however, that these plates

or some of them could be restored from Swedenborg's later

work on Iron. See Noraskogs pp. 204, 205, 207.

There are also two manuscript copies of the work in the Kungliga Vetenskapsakademien at Stockholm, and one in the Royal Library there; and the existence of these copies and the fragment already referred to, gives rise to some suspicion that use was made of the work perhaps without the author's permission. However this may be, consent to publish the work does not seem to have been given to Swedenborg, probably due to carelessness and loose methods, which resulted in the manuscript being laid aside and then neglected by the officials,       (ACSD 60; Hyde, no. 134-35)

The work is dedicated to the President of the Bergscollegium, Jacob Spens, and to its Assessors, namely, Urban Hjarne and seven others including Anders Swab, Swedenborg's stepbrother. And it is not improbable that part of the design in its composition was the wish of the author to prove himself useful to the Bergscollegium of which he was still an Assessor.

The Preface reads in part as follows:       (Doc. 1: 404)

       "It would be better to present myself before your high

Excellency and the highly renowned Royal Collegium with

something which would be of greater weight and value than a

description of a gross and rude blast furnace. . . But since

my main object has been to search out the nature of fire and

its operation in all kinds of furnaces and smelteries, i.e.,

in all that concerns the smelting, working and roasting of

metals, I thought it the wisest course first to make a

critical examination of the processes, to search out the

nature of fire in the large, and to dissect it in a great

subject, in order later to be the better able therefrom to

make conclusions as to its working and its properties in the

small; for to make trial in the small and in a model, and

then to set it forth in the large, is not so sure a

method. . .



       "Your Excellency and the highly renowned Royal College

will, therefore, not look on me unfavorably but will regard

more the view and intention than the actual work that is

offered. If something of service can be obtained from my

work, I beg the liberty of offering it for the use and

pleasure of your Excellency, as indeed is my duty."

Then follows a very complete description of iron smelting,

including how to choose the site for the smelting furnaces,

the building of the foundations and walls, the actual

construction of the furnace a complete description of the

smelting process. The construction and use of the bellows.

There are also sections on the definition of terms; the

improvement of ores; the different qualities of iron; the

causes of failures in smelting; and, finally comes a

description of an improved furnace. (Blast Furnaces was the

basis of pages 1-70 of De Ferro.)

In this work we have the first contribution to what was later to develop into the Opera Mineralogica; for the treatise on Smelting Furnaces was professedly but "a beginning (to use Swedenborg's own words) of a description of all our Swedish mining works," that is to say, not of iron only but also of gold, copper, silver, tin, etc. Thus early, namely, on the first opportunity that he found himself free to serve as Assessor in the Bergscollegium, without distractions - thus early did Swedenborg plan that work which later he commenced to bring out in handsome folio volumes. (OQ. 1:294 = LM. p. 221)

From the description which Swedenborg gives of the work on Smelting which he handed in to the Bergscollegium, it appears that it had a sequel, whether merely projected or actually drafted, being "a theory or investigation concerning fire and hearths" which included a description of an improved household furnace. This work was twice as long as Tremulation, but part of it at any rate was subsequently written in Latin and published in Amsterdam, 1721, as a separate little work on Fire in which also he included something of his treatise on Swedish Blast Furnaces.*
(OQ. 1: 292, 299 = pp. 215, 230)

* Swedenborg had already written a rough sketch on Fire and Colors in January 1718 (see above, p. 174). It was for the purpose of improving this that he went into the mining districts in January 1719, and it would appear that he handed in the rewritten treatise to the Bergscollegium in February 1719 (see above, p. 196). Presumably, he had kept a copy of this MS., and it is to this copy that he here refers.

But to go back to Swedenborg's arrival at Stockholm at the end of September; the first thing of interest that greeted his ears was the news heard from several of his friends that "a new discovery has been made in France respecting us inhabitants of the earth, to wit, that the earth has drawn some 25,000 miles nearer."* The subject is very near to the theme on which Swedenborg had been writing, namely, that the earth is going ever slower. Swedenborg, therefore, is anxious to hear more of this "new discovery," and he writes to his brother-in-law asking

"if observation was taken of the sun's diameter, and its

apparent increase; or, of the parallaxes of the planets and

their presumed



disturbance - which would have been noticed had we drawn

nearer toward our centre."

He adds that "such a phenomenon must manifest itself within

our solar vortex; there is no possibility of it outside, nor

of any parallax with the sun, unless something becomes

visible there which before was not visible."

       * About 175,000 English miles.
Swedenborg, although deeply interested in the new theory, is yet distrustful of it. He especially wonders "that such a leap [of 25,000 miles toward the sun]

should have happened in one or two years, since no comet has

recently thrown itself into our great vortex, nor has any

other planet that I know of drawn so near to our tellurian

vortex that it could have forced us in. Had there been any

such violent cause thereof," he adds, "one must suppose that

it [i.e., the earth] will run out again to its right

distance, which always adjusts itself according to the speed

and the course, so that our phaeton must again come to its

right path."

To him, it does not seem reasonable for it to have taken place naturally and without a violent cause.       (OQ. 1: 290 = LM., p. 213)

Despite his incredulity, he yet is pleased that he had noted something of the sort in his recently published Stoppage of the Earth, namely, the theory that the earth is going ever more slowly both in its daily and in its annual rotations,

"from which it necessarily follows that it must draw more and

more toward the sun; for the stronger the motion and the

vortical whir in the solar vortex, the farther are its

planats thrown outward from the centre,"* and vice versa,
and he refers to Newton's Principia to show the proportion of centrifugal force in respect to the rate of speed inward or outward, and also gives a simple illustration of his own, showing that

"the slower the course, the nearer the approach to the sun,

which is the theory I speak of in the above-mentioned tract."
What he is doubtful about is not that the earth may be drawn nearer to the sun, but he cannot get it into his head "that this should take place in two or three years," and this even "though our atmosphere itself seems to indicate a change in the air in respect to summers and winters; and likewise to the immensely violent north winds," etc.

* This is a marked addition to Swedenborg's theory as published in Stoppage of the Earth. There, nothing is said about the earth's drawing nearer to the sun; and had it been contemplated by the author, he would surely have mentioned it as apparently offsetting the shorter seasons and caused by a retarded revolution. Moreover, in his first draft of his Stoppage, it is said that the earth will in time be overcome with cold. It would appear that Swedenborg does not necessarily believe even now that the earth is drawing nearer to the sun; he merely observes that, provided this is shown to be the fact, it is not opposed to his theory.

Though Swedenborg is very urgent that his brother-in-law shall give him further knowledge concerning the new theory, yet Benzelius does not seem to have supplied the required information; nor can we find any mention of this new theory in the current transactions and learned journals, although Swedenborg had heard that communications in respect to it had been addressed to the learned Academies.



Benzelius, however, was evidently favorable to Swedenberg's views, for on November 26th, three weeks after the letter from which we have just quoted, Swedenborg writes that he feels encouraged to speak further on the matter. The former objection against the new theory persists. So sudden a change could never have come in so short a time. He cannot imagine our earth to be rushing swiftly toward its center as though driven by a phaeton, and this without the slightest causes as manifested in the sun.

"If the sun grows larger and larger before our eyes," he

adds, "then first would be the time to entertain fear because

of it, and to command ourselves to God's hands,'

He does believe that the earth is drawing nearer to the sun,

but "little by little," and he confirms this by the changes

in our horizon which has "changed considerably" in a hundred

years, so that the sea is rounder "a clear proof that the

earth is going more slowly and, consequently, it is drawing

itself inward." (OQ. 1: 293 = LM. p. 219)

Interesting and important is the outline given by Swedenborg, in this connection, of the Principia theory, that all things consist ultimately of pure and total motion.

"The holding of things together," he says, "comes from the

earth's pressure to the center, and this results from the

tellurian vortex." Thus, if the motion of this vortex ceases,

all gravitation will lease, all up and down; consequently,

all compounds will be dissipated; "thus, in a moment all

things must hasten to their least particles which can justly

be called a fire." And then he goes a step further and

suggests that here we have the explanation of the final

destruction of our earth at the last day. "The fire with

which our planet will be destroyed should result both from

the earth coming nearer to the sun, and from the circumstance

that all matter, . . . is in a moment dissipated into its

most minute particles."       (OQ. 1:293 = LM., p. 220)

In these literary labors to which Swedenborg has devoted the Spring and summer of 1719, Swedenborg realizes that he has now entered into the study of deeper and more fundamental problems than engaged his attention when publishing the Daedalus Hyperboreus. Then, he was in the world of causes and effects as seen in nature's ultimate operations; now, he is at the point of entering into nature's inner shrine, and penetrating into the causes of nature herself. And at this thought, he is carried away with the enthusiasm of an eager seeker after truth. In November 1719, after discussing with Benzelius the problems of the earth and the sun, and the site of the hells, he adds:

"The industry I have expended on them [namely, the small

works written during the summer] has caused the former works

which I gave out to appear to me as altogether contemptible,

and I hope to make real changes in them when they are to be

And this language suggests that something of a similar attitude may be not inappropriate to the student of Swedenborg's life as he advances from the small and miscellaneous preparatory works to the solid volumes which give the thought of the matured philosopher. (OQ. 1:292 = LM., p. 216)



It is at this time that we have one of the earliest of Swedenborg's thoughts respecting purely theological matters. In 1714 an English clergyman, Tobias Swinden, published an anonymous book entitled An Enquiry into the Nature and Place of Hell. This was reviewed in the Acta Eruditorum (1715: 107)

The author held that hell-fire was a real fire but if it were

in the center of the earth, as commonly believed, it could

not be eternal, and, moreover the earth would not be big

enough to contain all the damned. He meets these difficulties

by placing hell in the sun. In this way, moreover, hell is a

center or lowest place more distant from the empyrean sky

beyond all the stars, where is the abode of the blessed. At

the last day, the sun will burn up the earth, but itself will

not be destroyed. The Editors of the Acta Eruditorum poke a

little fun at the author by suggesting that the sun spots are

unclean spirits who sometimes get the opportunity of looking

at our earth.

Swinden's work, which was republished, caused some stir and was only noted by the Journal des Scavans and the Memoirs de Trevoux, and, of course, by the Neue Zeitungen, the Literary Digest of that day. The latter journal, in its issue of August 2, 1719, reviewed an attack on the theory in a German Disputation, and, doubtless in reference to this, Benzelius wrote and asked Swedenborg's opinion of the theory. In his answer, in a letter of November 26th, Swedenborg, of course, entirely rejects the new theory. (J.des S. Jan. 1717; M.de T. Nov. 1718)

"As to what my Brother mentions concerning the [Greek - pou]

of the damned being in the sun, I think just the opposite,

namely, that there, more likely, is the [Greek - pou] of the

blessed." His reasons for this, he adds, are as follows:

1. Because the sun is a center for the whole of our planetary world, and because the motion and essence of all things has its origin in the above-named center of the solar vortex.

2. That the up and the sky of the planets is toward the sun; so that if mention is made of journeying up in the solar vortex, it is always to the sun, while below is to the extremity of the vortex, Saturn, the Tartarean abodes.

3. That the most eminent light and glory is in the sun, while far away therefrom, where a sun is hardly to be seen, is darkness and other terrors.

4. But the main reason is seen to be that the most subtle atmosphere and the finest essences in which are found the finest elements are in the sun; thus, the nearer to the sun, the finer and in its center is presumably such fineness that the particles are almost devoid of composition, and so put off the name of matter and also form, weight, and many other properties possessed by compound particles. It would also seem likely that the finest substances must be in the sun. A god, an angel, a thing which besides has nothing material in its essence, must be the chiefest thing in its element. Like seeks like, and the finer does not naturally go to the grosser.

[5] That it could rather be believed - though I readily leave this to my Brother's judgment - that God has His seat in the sun, as the Bible says.       (OQ. 1:293 = LM. p. 220)

       "As regards the fire, it would be too gross to think

that the bodies of the damned are to be tormented by this;

for a pain without destruction cannot naturally exist. When

fire burns, it is accompanied with the feeling that it is

tearing asunder, loosening up, and



destroying something; where there is no destruction, there is

also no pain. Thus, a feeling of remorse in a conscience

should be a strong enough fire." (Confer D. 179). And then,

as though recalling himself from such theological

speculations, he adds "I hope it will not be interpreted ill

that I philosophize on this subject. God's Word is still the


Besides the literary work already mentioned as occupying Swedenborg's summer, namely, Height of Water, Tremulation and Blast Furnaces, Swedenborg also wrote a little treatise on reform in the coinage and treatises on methods of discovering new mines and the falling and rising of Lake Venner. (See Bok.Gillets Prot. p. 11)

The treatise on the Coinage was in the nature of a memorial or recommendation, and probably did not require censorship before being printed:* moreover, it was printed anonymously during the last days of November. It is entitled "A Suggestion for so dividing our Coinage and Measures that Calculations can be facilitated and all fractions avoided," and was sold "for 4 ore s.m. at Bookbinder Dalbeck's Widow on Nygatan." It consists of 7 pages of text, setting forth the great advantage which would result from the adoption of the decimal system. The same arguments are used here as were used in the "New Method of Calculations;" and, for the same reasons, Swedenborg saw the impossibility of introducing a new system of reckoning, but he also saw that most of its advantages could very easily be secured by the adoption of the decimal system in money and measures. (OQ. 1:295 = LM. p. 21)

* See Brefwaxling imallan E. Benzelius, p. 266, which suggests that Rosenadler was criticized for letting this book be printed.

Finally, another work which Swedenborg wrote during the summer of 1719 was entitled "New Ways of Discovering Mines." In his letter to Benzelius of November 26th, he says he has insinuerade this work, by which he seems to mean that he submitted it to the Bergscollegium. No copy, however, has ever been found in the Swedish Arkives, and if it was actually submitted, it was very probably soon returned. It is more probable, however, that Swedenborg did actually submit it, for the copy which he sent to Upsala and which is now preserved among Benzelius's papers is just such a neatly written copy as would be made for official inspection. The full title of the manuscript is "New Ways of Discovering Mines or some hitherto unknown means for the discovery of mines and treasures deeply hidden in the earth."

The Preface, which was perhaps written in Stockholm, opens

with a more open expression than ever before of the feeling

which was growing on Swedenborg, that science and study could

expect no encouragement in Sweden. "Every effort to develop

and enrich a country by adding to the number of its new

mines," he writes, . . . seems to be unavailing, since no

treasure, either above the earth or beneath, outweighs its

luxurious and extravagant expenditures so that more is

uselessly thrown away with one hand than can be gathered up

by both. It is something like presenting gold and other

valuables to one who sinks them into an abyss and offers his

treasures to a wealthy Neptune, as it were, or to one of his

crew. The best metalliferous veins, and the richest ores

would be to stop extravagance, to practice economy, to see

that debit and



credit correspond; every one should economize for himself and

thus be delivered from the taxes we have imposed on

ourselves. So long as we unnecessarily spend on the body more

gold and silver than is equal to double the yield of our

silver mines, and so long as more shiploads of our metal and

products are squandered than would be consumed by us in the

space of a year, there does not seem to be any urgent

necessity to point out ways and means of finding new

treasures, for this would be to feed and foster luxury which

would increase in like proportion. . . . An order forbidding

the abuse of gold and silver would be a doubly rich

metalliferous vein worth more than all our silver works in

Sweden taken together. . . But so long as a gilded fop and an

imbecile coxcomb has the idea in his head that the only thing

worthy of esteem is that which is seen on the surface, and

that one's merit must be shown by the gold one wears . . . no

perceptible change can be expected. . . Still," Swedenborg

concludes, with a reference to the changed political status,

"it is to be hoped that some change will come in this state

of affairs, now that we can think more freely . . . and are

permitted to see for ourselves, no longer fettered by a

sovereign's caprice which, from politeness, one must submit

to, thus producing merely an emulation and counterfeit and

not the product of ones own enlightened understanding."

This is rather a discouraging beginning for a treatise on discovering new mineral treasures, and yet it is a logical beginning; for the author thus points out how to discover new treasures by political and individual action as well as by mining.

       "These," says Swedenborg, ending his Preface, "are the

economic means for the discovery of new treasures, means

which are the most essential and practical; the physical will

now follow, which in time may discover something and be of

use to the country."

       The theory underlying this little treatise is that

minerals give off a distinct vapor. "If God most high had

endowed us with senses a hundred-thousand times finer, we

would without trouble" perceive these effluvia. As the case

is, however, we must use observation and reason. These vapors

may even insensibly affect our body and cause relaxation or

weakness, and in this way, perhaps, is explained the

persistence of the superstitious belief in the divining rod.

"It may be that when one walks over such a vapor, the joints

in the finger are rendered tense and limp, and the spirits in

the blood torpid, so that the rod necessarily falls forward

and shows that one has come upon a vein."

       Granting, then, the emanation of a vapor from mineral

veins, we must study its effects. For this, Swedenborg

recommends the thorough study of earths, clays, and

vegetation at deserted mines; mines in operation will not do

because the fire and smoke, the persons and horses "may cause

other changes than those which alone are sought for."

       The mineral vapors may also cause a new and spontaneous

generation of plants, as shown by the fact that "if gold or

silver be dissolved in its menstrua and something be mixed

therewith, there is at once formed something like a plant

. . . called the arbor philosophy.



       But to examine such mines properly, one must first be a

analytical chemist; must have a thorough knowledge of soils

and clays, and also of botany; then he can see and recognize

anything therein that is new and peculiar.

       From these principles, Swedenborg then gives suggestions

as to how the knowledge gained at deserted mines might be

used in the observation of vegetation, mosses, insects, etc.,

for the discovery of those signs which indicate the existence

of an underlying metallic vein.

       Among these signs, Swedenborg notes "how common it is in

mining districts to observe over the mountains, in the woods,

and in other places, fires shining in the darkness . . .

which disappear as soon as one approaches." These fires he

concludes to be clear indications of the presence of a

metallic vapor. The reports of such lights are too frequent

to be rejected as myths, as shown by Hjal. Sjogren in a

review of the work now under consideration, who gives

excellent reasons why they are not now reported. Sjogren also

relates that the presence of these "metallic vapors" above

metalliferous ores has been shown by photographic plates; in

fact, these "vapors" are nothing less than electric

radiations; and early in the twentieth century an Austrian

savant "called attention to the possibility of using this

method [photographic] for the discovery of mineral deposits

by photographing their electric irradiations from the earth

crust." Sjogren gives a number of modern confirmations of the

statements tentatively made by Swedenborg. It is not that

Swedenborg has here made any contribution to the discovery of

mines - indeed, his work did not see the light of day until

the twentieth century - but that he here displays a

penetration and a power of generalization which enabled him

to suggest a metallic vapor, the actuality of which could be

proved only by the delicate instruments of a much later age.

"God has not given us senses fine enough to discern the

presence of these metallic vapors," he says, and therefore

"subtle observation is required to make use of the means

which have been pointed out, and he who desires to do this

must be a good chemist, at least, a perfect expert in that

which he would discover in hidden places."       (NP 1908:118)

Swedenborg's theory is undoubtedly correct, but he himself doubtless saw that in practice, to find minerals by "Rimfrost, vissa Orter, Svampar, Dunster, etc.," is not to be relied on. (Rinman, s.v.Malmletare, p. 91)

The remaining work which Swedenborg wrote in Brunsbo in the summer and fall of 1719 is The falling and Rising of Lake Venner. A clean copy of this work and of the work on Discovering Mines was sent to Eric Benzelius - or, more probably, Swedenborg spent the Christmas holidays in Upsala and brought the MSS. with him. At any rate, the receipt of the former seems to have been reported by Benzelius to the Upsala Literary Society of which we shall speak presently on January 8th; and the MS. was handed to Dr. Martin for reading with a view to its publication on July 29th*; and the latter was read to the Society on February 5th.       (Bok.Gill.Prot. pp. 9, 13)

* It was published in Acta Literaria Sueciae, no. IV, issued in November 1720. The work must have been written at Vennersborg; see Trans., p. 24.



The problem which Swedenborg set before himself in his Falling and Rising of Lake Venner was to account for some very remarkable phenomena displayed by that Lake. Lakes Venner and Vetter are among the largest fresh-water lakes in the world, but what specially distinguishes them is that

"they labor even for five or six years," and become from two

to six feet above their former level; and this during the

course of a few weeks. "I have noticed," says Swedenborg

"that Venner has risen 1 1/2 ells in the time of a month, and

maintained that height for three or four months together"

before again descending; and this was confirmed by farmers

with whom he talked.

Now the Lake is supplied by twenty-four streams, and its only outlet is the Elf. From experiments which Swedenborg himself had carried on, he calculates that 100,800 cubic fathoms of water flow from the lake every hour. Considering the great size of the sea, it would take thirteen and a half years to lower its level by one fathom, supposing the lake were fed by no streams whatsoever.

Swedenborg confesses himself unable to explain the phenomenon, though he suggests that it is to be found in the nature of water, and asks his reader to wait for what he proposes to present on this subject.

"In all that concerns the finer constitution of nature," he

concludes, "we are groping in the dark; still, we shall

perhaps gradually be enlightened if we guide ourselves by

experiments, and support our thoughts by geometry and


The feeling of dissatisfaction with his progress in the atmosphere of Sweden is steadily growing with Swedenborg, and he is increasingly anxious to make his entrance into the cosmopolitan learned world; to turn all his thought and study to the subject of mineralogy; and by travel to seek fellowship and encouragement among foreign scholars. On November 26th, he writes from Stockholm: "It is likely that what I have now printed - [Om Docken ?] -

together with an article on the decimal system in our coinage

and measures will be my last, since I notice that Pluto and

the Envies have their seat among the people of the north, and

that one secures greater fortune if one plays the fool rather

than acts as a rational man, etc." (OQ. 1:295 = LM. p. 221)

A few days later, he returns to the same theme when on December 1st he sends his brother-in-law a copy of the just printed Decimal System in the Coinage:

"This is the last of my productions," he writes, "for the

reason that domestic and every-day matters are despised, and

I have already worked myself poor with them. I have sung long

enough to get to see whether any one will up on this account

and put some bread into my hand.* I have long been taken with

some plans on which I have now at last firmly set my mind, to

find out how far they will win my Brothers approval.       

(OQ. 1:295 = LM., p. 223)

       * Gustaf and Eric Benzelius had the same low opinion of Swedish culture. See Brefwaxling. pp. 71, 74.

       "1. To translate what I have printed into Latin or

French, and then to send it out to Holland and England, with

which, though somewhat later, I wish to include some of my

discoveries respecting fire and furnaces and other matters

useful in mining districts, together with something that is

not printed. My Brother will be pleased to be so kind as to

give me the names of those who write the Transactions and

Memoires in those places.



       "2. As I opine I have some understanding of mechanics in

connection with mining districts and mines, so far at least

as to be able to describe all that is new and old in

connection therewith better than any one else; and, in

addition, understand the theory of fire and furnaces, in

connection with which I have made a heap of discoveries;

therefore, I am thinking of using all my remaining time on

everything that can advance mining districts and their

subsistence; and to make myself as well informed thereon as


       "3. If fortune so favor me that I can get together the

required means; and if, meanwhile, by means of the

preparatory steps and correspondence I have succeeded in

winning some credit abroad, then it would highly entertain me

to journey to foreign lands and seek my fortune in my craft

which is concerned with all that has to do with the

advancement of mining and mines, etc. For he may well be

regarded as a fool who is a free and independent fellow and

has his name in other countries and yet remains here in the

dark, freezing to boot, where the Erynnider and Envies and

Pluto have their abodes, and where they dispose of all

rewards; where such labors as I have taken on me are rewarded

with misery. Until that time comes, my only joy would be to

successfully conceal myself. I think I could finally find a

corner for this in Starbo or Skinskatteberg. But since that

will likely come after four or five years respite, I see

beforehand that long-laid plans are like long journeys, which

are not carried on for long, and that some circumstances,

both in the community and in the individual, may break them

off and make a change. Thus man proposes, God disposes. Yet,

I have always liked it that one knows what he is aiming at,

and that he always forms for himself a good plan on the most

feasible lines, to carry out in his daily life."       

(OQ. 1:295s = LM. pp. 223-24)

While attending to his publications during the month of November, Swedenborg, after giving himself the few days necessary for settling in Stockholm, reported to the Bergscollegium. The records of the College, however, show his attendance only on November 5th, 6th, 14th, and 17th, after which his name does not appear in the Minutes for four years. It is evident he occupied a somewhat equivocal position. Because he was an Assessor Extraordinary, he could attend when he liked, but it seems that he did not sign any of the official documents, and it made no difference to the College whether he attended or not (see below, p. 229). He had no salary and no official work; and that there were forces inimical to him is indicated by his letter to the King of November 21, 1720, and by the fact that in 1723 he petitions the College to decide as to whether or not he had a right to a seat there.       (Doc. 1:428, 426; LM. p. 243)

He seems, however, to have had a friend and supporter in Vice-President Hjarne, who had no hesitation in fully recognizing him as an "Assessor in the Bergscollegium" and whom he met from time to time. Hjarne and Bishop Swedberg had been very great friends, but the latter's endeavors to reform Swedish orthography and grammar had been the occasion of a division between them which, in words at any rate, sometimes became quite violent (see above, p. 170). From a letter which Hjarne wrote to Eric Benzelius at this time, it is evident that Hjarne thought he had converted Swedenborg to his views with regard to orthography; indeed, this is difficult to imagine, for both previously and to the end of his life, Swedenborg's Swedish orthography shows many variations and inconsistencies. Hjarnes letter is dated Stockholm, November 26, 1719, and in the course of it he says:



"Bishop Swedberg's son, the Assessor in the Bergscollegium,

seeing from my discourse some rays of the knowledge of nature

which pleased him, tried to establish an amnesty between us,

and to compose our conflicting views, yet against my will:

for it is better for me that the Bishop bursts out in full

wrath and most bitter gall, so that I get full reason to make

an attack on his personalities," etc.       (ACSD 189)

Still, however equivocal his official position, this did not hinder Swedenborg from whole-heartedly devoting himself to everything that could advance the science of mining.

He had not been in Stockholm two weeks before he addressed to the Queen, on November 13th, a petition for the establishment of sulphuric acid works at Falun. At this time, sulphuric acid was a monopoly owned by the works at Dylta near Orebro; but Swedenborg had been impressed at the great amount of sulphur at Falun, and the directing of this thought to the profit of his Fatherland led to the writing of his petition. (ACSD 186; Doc. 1:405, 401; Codex 85: 51)

The Memorial, which is now lost, was sent by the Queen with a favorable request to the Bergscollegium, and that body considered it on November 26th; but nothing seems to have come of the matter, perhaps owing to the deeply enrooted unwillingness of the Falun miners to introduce any newfangled ideas, or of the Dylta Monopolists.

Meanwhile, at Upsala the old Collegium Curiosorum was being revived; it had ceased meetings for seven or eight years. In its early days, the new Society was to have much to do with Swedenborg's literary productions.

       "On the 26th of November," we read in the earliest

Minutes of this renewed Society, "the undersigned agreed to

hold a literary guild (bokwetts Gille) which shall present an

outline of the new books published in our land in all that

concerns literary matters. Thus:

"1. The giving of a short review of some new book

"2. Literary news

"3. Scientific and Historical Observations.

"4. The Obituaries of learned men."

(Brefwaxl. XXIII; Glas, p. 9; Bokw.G.Prot., p. 5)

       The work thus outlined was to be done in a quarterly

Latin journal; and its main purpose was to make Swedish

science known to the learned world.       

(Cf. Hyde, n. 119; Glas, p. 10)

The meetings of the Guild were to be held every Friday afternoon, and were practically in the nature of an editorial board.

Of the old Collegium Curiosorum, three members remained in Upsala, Benzelius, Rudbeck and Roberg, and these in the new Society were joined by four other members of the University. (Bokwetts G.Prot. p. 4)

       It may be noted as a matter of interest, that while the

Collegium Curiosorum was established at a time of threatened

plague, so the Literary Guild was established at a time of

threatened attacks by Russia. But the Collegium Curiosorum

was rather an informal gathering, and its only printed

"Transactions" were due to the enterprise and liberality of

Swedenborg in the Daedalus Hyperboreus; while the Literary

Guild was a more formal body which undertook itself to print

a learned journal. Moreover,



while the Collegium under the influence of Polhem and

Swedenborg, had largely concerned itself with practical,

scientific, mechanical problems, the Literary Guild, by

Benzelius, was engaged in more purely literary studies; its

organ, the Acta Literaria Sveciae was patterned after the

Aeta Eruditorum, and became the medium whereby the literary

works of Sweden were reviewed and so made known to the

learned Latin world; and lastly, while Daedalus Hyperboreus

was published at Swedenborg's sole expense, the Acta

Literaria Sveciae was supported by the contributions of the

members, the Editor even being paid a small recompense of 120

dal. a year; naturally, it was written in Latin. Its expenses

were defrayed by the sale of iron pipes.

(Glas, p.13; Brefwax., p. XXIV)

The first number appeared in the middle of February 1720, and contained a long and very favorable review of Swedenborg's Height of Water, and also notices of his Stoppage of the Earth, Money and Measures, Algebra and Daedalus Hyperboreus. The review was written by Eric Burman, the Professor of Astronomy. (See NP 1929:45)

This is the first of Swedenborg's works to be publicly reviewed, and the review constitutes the first announcement of his name to the learned world; for the Acta Literaria Sveciae had a European circulation, and, moreover, in the following year the review in question was given an extended notice in the popular Neue Zeitungen for March 1721, this being the first introduction of Swedenborg's name into the literature of Germany. (NZ. 1721: 202-6)

The meetings of the Society, besides deciding as to the books to be reviewed and by whom, devoted itself to the reading of letters and communications - including several from Swedenborg. Thus, on Fridays, December 4th, 11th and 18th, 1719, Prof. Burman read Swedenborg's Height of Waters and on other dates, many of Swedenborg's letters to Benzelius were read and discussed. Benzelius, of course, informs his brother as to the formation of the Literary Society, and this leads Swedenborg to writes him early in 1720 that in Stockholm also they wished to form a Collegium Curiosorum, and had invited Swedenborg to become a member, but he had asked them "as to actualities and not words."
(OQ. 1:297 = p. 227)

The Society at Upsala, however, was an actuality, and when at the end of January Swedenborg was invited to become a member, he very gladly accepted and promised to communicate articles from time to time. As an earnest of this, Benzelius presented Swedenborg's New Ways of Discovering Mines - the neatly written copy already referred to (see above, p. 210) which was read before the Society on February 5th. The reading led to some discussion, and the Society suggested that Swedenborg ascertain whether such strong Wittarung - dancing lights - are found in Swedish mines as at the German mines, and also whether it is only metals in the ground that give forth a vapor. (Bokwetts G.Prot., pp. 12-13)

In sending this MS, (which was accompanied by the MS. on Finding the Longitude) to Benzelius, who was the Editor of the Acta Literaria Sueciae, Swedenborg doubtless had in mind its insertion in that learned journal, and it is to this, doubtless, that he refers when he writes Benzelius early in February: "It is possible that my two treatises . . . could be translated into good Latin; I beg this with pleasure."       (OQ. 1:297 = LM., p. 227)



It is owing to the meetings of the Upsala Society that we owe the preservation of the fragments of Swedenborg's work on Tremulation. It will be remembered that the complete work, which was "somewhat lengthy" was handed in to the Medical Collegium* on October 30, 1719. The Minutes of the College for that date state that

"The Syndic [or President] announced that . . . Immanuel

Swedenborg had handed to the College for censure a book

called Anatomy of our Finest Nature, showing that our motive

and living essence depends on co-tremulations. The College

found it desirable that this treatise be read through by all

the Assessors of the College; after which judgment should be

given concerning it."

(See NP. 1900: 122; NC.Mag. 1900:Feb.; ACSD 59; OQ. 1:297)

       * The censorship of books was in the hands of an appointed Censor; but the Medical College had the sole right to censure medical books (Hist.Tids. 1893, pp. 130-31). Swedenborg's work was evidently considered to be a medical work.

Nothing is known concerning the fate of this MS. The opinion of the members of the College who read it was evidently favorable; for early in February, Swedenborg writes:

"The medical men in the city take it up and they all express

themselves favorable in regard to it. I will not get it from

them until Bromell also has had it."       

(OQ. 1: 297 = LM., p. 227)

Possibly, when at last it was taken by Bromell, it remained in his possession. Swedenborg does not again refer either to this MS. or to the MS. on Blast Furnaces which he had submitted to censure about the same time. This silence on his part may seem surprising. In the case of the Swedish Blast Furnaces, it is possibly due to his having written the work mainly for the Bergscollegium itself; and in any event, he later published the gist of it in Latin. As to the Tremulation, Swedenborg may have decided to give the matter further study before publication

Fortunately, Swedenborg preserved the first draft of this work, and in pursuance of his promise to send papers to the Upsala Society, of which he was now a member, he commenced a clean copy to be sent to Benzelius from time to time.

"The work will be somewhat lengthy,"* he writes, "and I think

I shall continue sending it seven or eight weeks, even though

twice a week."       (Ibid.)

       * On the basis of what Swedenborg 's says, the finished work would have been about twice as long as the pan now preserved, and would have consisted of 14 - 16 chapters,

In connection with the brief outline of the theory of Tremulation which he printed in the last issue of the Daedalus Hyperboreus, Swedenborg had explained to Benzelius that, in this theory he had found himself in agreement with Baglivi (see above, p. 188). After completing the finished work he is more specific. Writing to Benzelius, who had already received the first two chapters, he says early in February, 1720:

"It is indeed true that Baglivi first advanced the theory;

Descartes likewise touched on it somewhat; later Borelli. But

no one, as yet, has proved it and carried it forward. Thus, I

hold my proofs as new and as my own, and the theory itself as



another's. I may indeed say, however, that what is contained

therein I got for myself, and afterwards noticed that it was

one with Baglivi's - which has pleased my imagination such as

what is said there about the function of the meninges.

(OQ. 1:297 = LM., p. 227)

The theory was that sensations are tremulations of a membrane; Swedenborg defends this theory in his Miscellaneous Observations (English, p. 105).

Chapters I and II were read before the Literary Society on February 12th and 19th. These chapters are designed to show that life is nothing but motion. Therefore the soul through the brains introduces motion into the nerves which thus produce tension of the membranes whereby motions from without can be received, and so sensations, from the highest of them to the lowest

We note in these chapters the germ of several doctrines which subsequently became of dominating importance in Swedenborg's philosophy. Thus the doctrine of forms is involved in what is said of the different forms of motions; and the doctrine of the motion of the brain is clearly stated; also the doctrine of the circulation of the animal spirits; of the cerebrospinous fluid; of cerebral pathology (Trem., p. 42), the ear (ib. p. 62) (Trem., pp. 10, 15, 37, 38, 39)

One must wonder also at the great knowledge of cerebrology which the work displays. Swedenborg's peculiar bent of mind would not seem to suggest the study of anatomy; yet his great friendship for Doctors Roberg and Rudbeck does suggest some instruction in anatomy while a student at Upsala. Certainly, the postulating of this instruction would be in harmony with the natural ability of Swedenborg - first shown in Tremulation and then more fully developed in his anatomical works - to grasp the details of anatomy and see them as a one and in actual working operation; to say nothing of the knowledge of minute anatomy displayed in the present treatise (see chap. III). In any case, it is not surprising that Swedenborg's first writing on anatomy should have a mechanical turn.

Chapter III deals with the nerves, and displays a very considerable knowledge of their anatomy. Swedenborg dwells on the inextricable inter-communication between the nerves all over the body, which he considers as a proof that "every sensation is a tremulation in the whole nervous system," and is not confined to any particular place in the brain but exists in all places simultaneously. In the medulias spinalis and oblongata it must run "like lightning." How these tremulations are communicated by means of membranes, all of which are nervous; and "the principal motions of tremulation" and so "the most subtle sensations," take place in the dura and pia maters. The dura and pia maters are extended to the whole body and are ever held in a state of tension or expansion, and everywhere and especially in the cranium are adjoined to hard bones and cartilages.

After sending chapter III, but before that chapter had been read by the Society, Swedenborg interrupts the series and sends a transcript of chapter XIII as a further explanation of the subject dealt with in chapter III, namely, with the mechanism of the tension of vessels by means of fluids which alone enables sensations once communicated to be spread out everywhere. He interpolates chapter XIII here because, as he writes to Benzelius

"otherwise one might grope for the right meaning. I should

indeed desire," he adds, "that it be taken into full

consideration, and also that objection be made to it,

wherefrom the matter could receive some enlightenment for

myself . . . whether I am on the



right or an erroneous path." (OQ. 1:298 = LM., p. 228)

Chapters I and II had already been read before the Upsala Society, and it would seem that Benzelius had communicated some reflections made by the members. For in the letter from which we have just quoted, Swedenborg says:

"But to imagine much to oneself in respect to the animal spirits, and to pretend to know their chemistry and function but not at all their geometry is too weak a defence. . . I presume that the Academicians are so reasonable as to put away childish prejudices and offer reasons in answer to reasons."       (Ibid.)

Chapters III-IV were sent together (and perhaps also XIII) and were read before the Society on Friday, March 4, 1720, on which occasion Professor Roberg suggested that one might put before Swedenborg the following difficulty "that he may express himself concerning it at his pleasure," namely:

"In what way one can explain the fact that through one and

the same nerve, the force possessed by a waking man

continually . . . moves from his brain to the surface of his

body, and, on the other hand, during the same moment and

through the same nerve, the impressions of the objects of the

external senses go up from the surface of the body to the

brain directly contrary to the former stream."
What is most significant in this question is the fact that it was put by a professor of medicine, a man aged fifty-six years, to one who but ten years earlier had been a student and who was not a medical man.*

* That Swedenborg's reputation as a mathematician was high is indicated in a letter by Professor of Medicine P. Martin (April 1723), where he says that the theory that water particles are round "is held by the best mathematicians, such as, here in Sweden, by C. Radet, Polhem, and Assessor Swedenborg (Tissel. Utterligare forsok. pp. 12, 90-91).

Chapters V-VI were sent to Benzelius in two installments.

Chapter IV shows that the membranes are tensed by means of

blood or lymph, and it is in this connection that the author

first teaches that "as the heart is the propelling organ of

the blood, so are the cerebrum and the medulla the fountain

of the circulation of other fluids in the body" (p. 36), for

both the brain and medullas have a reciprocal motion. These

other fluids he here calls nervous serums, "the existence of

which will not be denied by any one of common sense" (ib.),

and he states that serums are formed in the cortical glands

from materials supplied by the blood vessels (p. 37). The

course or circulation of the serum is as follows: From the

meninges it goes to the cortical glands, thence through the

nerves to all the membranes and muscles of the body (p. 39).

But the teaching is rather vague though rich in suggestion.

What is most remarkable is the evidence the work gives us not

only of Swedenborg's keen sight into the uses of the human

forms but also of his natural bent to anatomical studies. He

goes out of his way, for instance, to account for the

different origins of the humors of the eye (p. 39).

From his doctrine that sensation is according to the tension of membranes, and that this tension is due to fluids, Swedenborg explains the different states of sensation. Thus, in fear, when the blood rushes to



the heart, the senses became dull (p. 42). So in swooning

Paralysis closes the passages of the nerves, as observed in

autopsies (p. 43). In courage, on the other hand, the blood

flows freely (p. 44), and so on. Injuries to the dura mater

cause convulsions, swooning, etc., showing "that our proper

life resides especially in the membranes" and is according to

their state of tension (p. 46) and this conclusion that "life

resides in the membranes" (p. 46) is further confirmed by the

fact that in operations, sensation continues even after parts

of the cortical brain have been removed (p. 46). In cases of

petrified brains, the membranes seem to perform "that which

is usually ascribed to the inner part" (p. 47), i.e., it

originates the motion which causes tension and sensation.

Another confirmation is the office of the bark of trees in

transmitting humors (p. 47). Swedenborg ends his fourth

chapter by ascribing temperaments to the amount of blood in

the vessels and the consequent tension of the membranes.

[See The Brain, I: n. 41 seq.]

This chapter evidences the ability to visualize the parts of the human body, and to see them simultaneously in motion; it also evidences some study of the pathology of the brain. See Codex 86, pp. 261 seq. What is here contained from Willis was perhaps written in preparation for Tremulation.

Chapter V deals with the office of the bones in tensing the membranes. Infants are less sensitive because their bones are soft; in old age, when fluids become sparser, the sensations grow dull. So infants are not sensitive in the womb when the dura mater is without motion.

In this connection, Swedenborg makes the interesting statement that man's slowness in maturing is an advantage in that "the understanding is able to increase and be more and more perfected so as finally to present a man who can exhibit a ripe understanding" (pp. 58-59).

The VIth and last of the chapters which Swedenborg copied out is a demonstration of the preceding principles, using the ear and the effects of musical sounds as an illustration. And here again we - who, in following Swedenborg thus far, have had no occasion to think of him as an anatomist - are amazed at the familiarity with his subject which he displays, a familiarity which could hardly have been acquired by a man of thirty in a few summer weeks, but which must have involved previous training.

There is no record that any, save the first three chapters, of this work was read to the Literary Society. But that the rest was read by some of the Professors, and, moreover, was criticized, seems clear from Swedenborg's utterances. Indeed, it was this that finally led the author to desist from further copying.

When transmitting chapter IV, he writes on February 29, 1720:

"I wish it could get the approval of the learned man

concerned. But since there is some doubt concerning it, I

will observe some delay until I got to hear what there can be

to object to it; for if one has an opposite opinion then the

best or reasons would be disregarded. In preconceptions, each

and every man is almost blind. One must indeed look out

that he does not have the disapproval of the learned against

him because of some new finds and hitherto unsolved

arguments. If I can safely send the continuation, it shall be

done as soon as possible; but I do not wish to leave anything

to sinister judgments." (OQ. 1:299, 300 = LM. pp. 230, 231)



On March 3d, when sending chapter V, he writes about waiting until he gets some advice as to whether what has been sent secures approval or censure. A few days later, just after leaving Stockholm for Starbo and Brunsbo, he sends the clean copy of chapters V and I. This is the last. While traveling, he had no time to continue the work, and when he arrived at Brunsbo, he found that the first draft had been left in Starbo. At the end of April, Benzelius writes urging the continuation; but Swedenborg is now concentrating on chemistry and the deeper aspects of metallurgy. Nevertheless, he does not refuse Benzelius. On May 2d, he writes from Brunsbo;

"It will be my greatest pleasure if I were able from here to

continue the anatomy. The draft was left at Starbo, and

without this it would weary my head to follow up the

remaining points, and which are already covered over by

thoughts of another kind. As soon as I get the opportunity,

it shall be done." (OQ. 1:301, 302, 303; LM., pp. 233, 235, 236)

This is the last we hear of Tremulation. Swedenborg's interest in this physiological study had been overcast by other studies in which physical experiments could more manifestly come to the aid of speculation. It is conceivable that now, as when later he had written the Economy, he felt he had gone too fast and must pursue a slower course, abiding more closely by the findings of experience. And this perhaps accounts for his not reclaiming his completed MS. from the Medical College

In addition to Tremalation, Swedenborg had in his mind to write

"something which concerns to mechanism of our passions and of

the emotions of the mind so far as these can be deduced from

the structure of the nerves and membranes; and, in addition,

concerning some unknown properties possessed by the least

ramifications of the arteries and veins for the continuation

of motion."* (OQ 1:299 = LM., p. 230)

       * The sketch on the ramifications of the arteries is not improbably the basis for the article published later in the Miscellaneous Observations, entitled "The Blood circulates through the Capillaries more easily than through the arterial trunks" (Miss. Obs., p. 78).

But all this was "not as yet worked out," and, like Tremulation, soon came to be overshadowed by other studies and was not again revived until many years later.

During his stay in Stockholm from the end of September 1719 to the early part of March 1720, Swedenborg was introduced into the House of Nobles as a member - fee was 200 dal.s.m. This was in January 1720 when the House met on the 16th. Doubtless also he took part in the imposing ceremonies which marked the opening of a Diet. Among these was the assembling of the nobles in the great hall of the House of Nobles on January 22d, when they all proceeded in a body to the castle, there to hear a sermon - the other Houses went to the Stora Kyrka - and later, in the Royal Audience Hall, to be greeted by the Queen on her throne.
(Nya Hand., p. 437; Kleberg, p. 186; Adels Riks.Prot., p. 15)

The ceremony of introduction consisted in the Marshal

addressing a few words of welcome to the newcomers, and

receiving thanks from them.       (Adels Riks.Prot., p. 177)



With the exception of a few days in November, as already noted, Swedenborg does not appear to have had any work in connection with the Bergscollegium. Perhaps it was a question of salary and times were bad; and so he seems to have occupied himself solely with studying and writing. But though not recorded as attending the sessions of the College, he yet kept in touch with it. For, in February he sends Benzelius a copy of a communication transmitted to the Bergscollegium by one of its auscultants who was making observations in Newcastle, England. This communication is of particular interest inasmuch as it describes one of the earliest known forms of steam engines, a steam-driven pump used in the Newcastle coal mines by Messrs. Ridley, and which could pump water up from any depth. It was evidently not new to Swedenborg for on the extract, he writes:

"My thoughts on this matter in connection with the letter and

also from the models of such machines which were made some

years ago, and likewise how it can be put into practice in

Sweden, I will set forth in detail on another occasion."

(OQ. 1:300 = LM., p. 232)

Such a machine was set up by Triswald in the Danamora mine in 1728. (Act.Lit.S., 1728:453)

With all his work, however, Swedenborg's mind was not at rest. Though nominally Assessor, he was actually without employment and most certainly without a salary. Though thirty-two years of age with two years of active service with Polhem, he had never received a single penny in compensation. It is not surprising, then, to see that his active mind turns back to the earlier efforts made at Lund, to have Charles a mathematical society. Now that the first political excitement over the succession, etc., is past, the Estates will have time to consider other matters. Early in March he writes:

       "May not now be the time and occasion to propose to the

Estates that which was projected in the blessed King Charles

XII's time in regard to the establishment of a new

mathematical society as these exist at those places where

studies flourish; in order to encourage that for which there

are indeed clever men in Sweden, but little encouragement,

advancement, rewards, support, etc. In England, such a

project has been established       from a small beginning, by the

contributions of many well disposed supporters, and it has

performed great uses for that kingdom."       

(OQ. 1:301 = LM., p. 233)

He then suggests that the Estates would probably not refuse to authorize a lottery. Lotteries were new in Sweden, but one had recently been held in Malmo, and Swedenborg follows the plan of this in his suggestion that 15,000 lots be sold, netting 15,000 dal.s.m. that the prizes be, one of 2,000 dal.; 2 of 1,000; 4 of 500;       ten of 100; 20 of 50; 50 of 10 and 1,000 of 1; totalling 9,500. Counting 500 for expenses, this would leave a balance of 5,000 dal. annually from the lottery, which Swedenborg suggests might be spent on the proposed mathematical society, as follows:

Annual salary, for       1 man              1000 s.m

"              "       "       2 men [at 700]       1400

"              "       "       4 "        [" 500]        2000

"              "       "       4 " [" 100]       400

                     Total                     4800



What response Swedenborg got to this proposal is not known. At any rate, the matter was not brought up in the Diet, and nothing further is heard of it. Swedenborg was destined to be, not a mathematical director of a learned society, but a mineralogist, and all the events of his life tended in this direction even though sometimes he sought to look in other directions. See WE n. 2532 as to the leading of Swedenborg's life by Divine Providence.

In the middle of February, as a member of the newly formed Bokwett Gille, he received his two copies of the first number of the Acta Literaria Sueciae, and there he read a long review of his Height of Water, the first introduction of his name and works to the world of cosmopolitan learning.

       "I enjoyed the review," he writes, "even the Latinity is

praiseworthy; but it would not have hurt if a little more

hand been said about the proof . . . As regards the moving of

stones in a deep abyss." (OQ. 1:299 = LM., p. 230)

One cannot but be struck by Swedenborg's insistence on this point.

The prospect of coming into contact with the outside learned world is pleasing to him. He would like his papers on discovering mines and his observations on the rise and fall of Lake Venner translated into Latin for the Acta; is deeply grateful to Magister Vassenius for translating one of his works, probably the Lake Venner. He is pleased also to hear that Benzelius will have his Longitude reviewed in the second number of the Acta.

"I wish that it be done with some care, for the reason that

it may find favor abroad, especially as it may be of such

great use to the public; for in some respects, I am sure that

among the methods that have been found, this is the easiest."

(OQ. 1:297, 301 = LM., pp. 227, 233)

There were certain matters which had to be attended to before leaving Stockholm, such as the inventoring and disposal by auction of the remaining copies and plates of Daedalus Hyperboreus; for, with the appearance of the Acta Literaria, the Daedalus naturally came to an end. But after this, Swedenborg, early in March, left Stockholm for the charming homestead in Starbo.* Here he meets his brother-in-law Lars Benezlius with his wife, sister Hedwig, and their three little children.

* Starbo, which was a valuable property, with homestead, furnaces, mill, etc., was the property of Swedenborg's stepmother, Sara Bergia. She had desired to will it to Emanuel Swedenborg (Doc. 1:374).

From his brother-in-law, he hears of a curious incident that deeply excites his scientific curiosity. A man named Kokk had told Lars Benzelius that one night he and a companion had watched all night on a mountain (Larsberg) about ten miles southwest of Starbo. North of this mountain, directly at its foot, lies a great like. On the occasion referred to, from this mountain Kokk saw the sun over the horizon during the whole night; and at midnight, when the sun went down for half-an-hour, he also saw it in Lake Wssman. (Bok. G. Prot., p. 23)

"If this is true," says Swedenborg, "Wesman must be the

principal cause of it by making the horizon damp and more

suitable for refraction." (OQ. 1:302 = LM., p. 235)



Swedenborg's brother-in-law Lars, told Swedenborg that the man had absolutely assured him of the truth of his statement, but this did not satisfy the mind of Swedenborg which looked rather to the scientific methods of the present than to the easy credulity of the past.

"I do not wish to set faith in it until I myself get to make

the same observation, which would be wholly worthy of the

Acta Eruditorum." (Ibid.)

again the thought of contact with the learned world of abroad.

Apparently, the observation by Kokk had been made in June 1719, and so Swedenborg proposes to return to Starbo on June 10th or 11th and spend the night on the same mountain in order to make the observation "of the setting or refracted sun" for himself. "Until then," he says, "I suspend faith until my own eyes have witnessed it." Whether or not Swedenborg did actually take steps to make this observation, we do not know; it is very probable. (OQ. 1:303 = LM., p. 237)

It was while at Starbo, perhaps, that Swedenborg commenced those experiments on "the decrease and degrees of heat in bodies" which he seems to have continued in June; see p. 224 below. In Brunsbo he made certain observations on ice crystals which were suggested to him by his Bullular Hypothesis. Writing in Miscellaneous Observations on the crystallization of pure water in definite forms, he says:

       "I will now describe a new form of the kind, which I

observed as I was traveling in the winter season in West

Gothland in Sweden, not far from the episcopal seat of

Brunsbo. I saw that certain aqueous germinations had shot

forth from the ice. Among these there were several in the

exact shape of hexagonal crystals; but from which they

differed, as their upper plane was not oblique, and also

inasmuch as they were raised by a round stem from their base

on the ice."

After referring to the accompanying figure, he continues:

       "The ice was covered with these productions and, as I

was much surprised, I took up a number in different places

and found that they were all crystallized in the same form.

Besides this germination, there were several others upon the

ice, which rose to a height of one or two inches above it;

some were like twigs, others like leaves, some stood upright

like simple threads, others intersected each other

transversely like lines, with a kind of sloping ridge."

He connects their figures with the figure found in figured

stones and also the figures of the frost on our window panes,

and also by snow, and ascribes it to the shape of water

particles. (Miss. Obs. [Eng.], p. 82)

From Starbo, he journeyed down to Brunsbo via rebro, a distance of about a hundred and eighty miles. He was struck with the remarkable number of great isolated stones which he saw, and he at once connects them with his theory concerning the action of the ocean depth. Speaking of his journey, he writes to Benzelius:



"On the way . . . I observed how the very largest stones,

like little mountains, to the weight of 300 or 400

skeppunds,* have come to the greatest altitude. When you

journey down, take note of this. For me, it is a

demonstrating reason that in a deep abyss, stones are rolled

and spread round about; to wit, are brought higher and higher

(since the highest land is in the neighborhood of rebro);

that is to say, nearer and nearer to the edge or surface of

the ocean, until they come to such a depth that it was no

longer possible to roll them away again. This is what I

proved." (OQ. 1:304 = LM., p. 238)

       * Referring to these stones in his Height of Water (Proof VI), Swedenborg gives them a weight of A4 to 500 skeppunds." A skeppund equals 20 lispund, equals 20 x 20 lbs., equals 400 lbs.

He arrived at Brunsbo about the end of March. His father had been visited with a great affliction, for on March 3rd, while Swedenborg was still in Stockholm, Sara Bergia, his second wife, died. Of her, the Bishop writes:

"I lived peacefully with her until 1720 when God took her

after three days' severe pleurisy on March third, by a quiet

and peaceful death, to my great sorrow and loss. God give her

joy to all eternity for all the joy she brought to me."

(Tottie, 2:272)

Swedenborg was now thirty-two years old and had lived many years independently of his parents; still, the loss of his stepmother must have been felt by him. She was particularly fond of her oldest stepson who was reflecting honor on his father the Bishop.

At Brunsbo, Swedenborg found a new and unexpected treasure. His gifted cousin, Dr. John Hesselius, had come into the possession of a medical library left by a Dr. Ludenius,* a protg of Skara University who had studied in Holland. What specially interested Swedenborg were the chemical books. ? Swedenborg's first interest in chemistry: see Doc. 1:368. ON May 2nd, he writes:

* His brother Anders Lundstedt married Swedenborg's sister Margareta (Skara Stifts Herdam., I: 16; Lewenhaupt, Carl III's Officerare).

       "I am now engaged in running through all the chemical

works which are to be found in the Ludenian stock of books

which now belongs to Hesselius; for I have set before me the

will to penetrate into all that concerns fire and metals from

their first beginnings even to their maturity. In accordance

with the plans of the preceding memorial [see below, p 224],

I am taking the chemical experiments of Boyle, Becher,

Hierne, Lemmery, etc., and am searching into nature in her

leasts, comparing them with geometry and mechanics, and am

daily encouraged by new discoveries in all that concerns the

nature of subtle substances. This I am more and more

confirmed in, since I already notice that experiments, like a

series of links, are in agreement with it. It seems to be a

good foundation to build up on an endless number of

experiments; to make use of other's labor and expenditures;

to wit, to work with the head over that on which others have

worked with their hands. From this a multitude of deductions

could be made for use in chemistry, metallurgy, fire, and all

their phenomena." (OQ. 1:303 = LM., p. 237)



[1720 May-June

Here we have Swedenborg's first statement of that principle of study which guided him throughout his scientific career, to take the researches of others and from these to make his own deductions.

The "new discoveries" to which he refers in the letter quoted above consisted in his finding out "the interior geometry" of metals, etc., and "the right proofs for the experiments which have been set up by the chemists." He believes these discoveries "will hereafter redound to the science" of chemistry. Subsequently, he developed them in his work on Chemistry, where he seeks to show that the difference between chemical elements is made by the size, figure, and inter-arrangement of their constituent particles. (ACSD 225 A)

The "preceding memorial" to which Swedenborg refers in this letter, as containing the "plans" which were his ultimate object in these chemical studies, was a memorandum, enclosed in the letter of May 2nd, which contained a plan on which he was working for publishing three tomes, namely, 1. On Mechanics. 2. On Fire, and 3. On Hearths and Ores. This memorandum is not now preserved, but a record of its contents is entered in the Minutes of the Upsala Literary Society before which it was read. Those contents constitute the first plan of that work, of which three volumes were published, fourteen years later, as the Opera Mineralogica. Thus, not only was Swedenborg holding fast to his determination to devote himself to the study of mines and minerals, but already in 1720 he was planning his ambitious series on metals. (Bok. G. Prot., p. 24)

Soon after his arrival in Brunsbo, Swedenborg received the second issue of the Acta Literaria Sueciae (published April 6), and was doubtless not displeased to observe that the first article was a long and comprehensive review of his treatise on Finding the Longitude.

In May, Eric Benzelius and his wife, Swedenborg's sister Anna, joined Swedenborg at Brunsbo. Doubtless also, other members of the family were present to attend the funeral of their stepmother. That it was a united family does not seem indicated by what has already been related (see above, p. 176), nor by the fact that it was but a few weeks after their stepmother's death before the division of her property among her stepchildren and heirs came into the law courts. But before proceeding to this matter, we shall first relate a further effect made by Swedenborg to secure a definite status in the Bergscollegium. (Bok. G. P., p. 24; (OQ. 1:303 = LM., p. 237)

He left Brunsbo early enough in June to be able to make the observation on Mount Larsberg on June 11 x 12, in order to test the accuracy of Kokk's relation as told him by his brother-in-law Lars Benzelius.

It was probably while at Starbo at this time (the middle of June), that Swedenborg made those experiments "on the increase and degrees of heat in bodies according to the Bullular Hypothesis" - an hypothesis which he seems now to have formulated as a result of his chemical studies. (But see Chemistry, Preface; LM., p. 281; and above, p. 173) Describing these experiments in his Miscellaneous Observations, published in 1722, he says:

"I exposed flat pieces of copper, iron, stone, oak and pine

timber to the action of the sun from daybreak unto two

o'clock in the afternoon, and the air was found to be pretty

warm, though not by any means sensibly warm to the touch,

like warm water; the pine timber was hotter, the oak hotter

still, so that the hand could scarcely bear it; the stone was

middling hot, but the copper was too hot to touch. On

repeating the experiment, I discovered that



these substances varied in their degrees of heat according to

their bulk and the thinness of the plates; that is to say, in

the same time and from the same fire, a large body did not

absorb the degree of heat proportioned to its compactness so

quickly as the same body divided into plates; and therefore

the experiment was most successful when the plates were of

equal thickness . . . The same rule holds in cold substances.

Thus, on exposing the same plates to the wintry sky, the air

being very cold [see above, p. 222], snow is found to be

still cold to the sense of touch; but iron is so intensely

cold as to adhere to the skin and almost to tear it away from

the finger." From this, he concludes, that "the same heat

and the same cold are much more increased in dense than in

soft bodies, and that they are in proportion to the size of

the pores; hence, that in porous substances . . . heat and

cold are not circumstanced as in compact substances; or in

old hard bodies as in recent" - all of which he explains

according to the Bullular Hypothesis. (Miss. Obs., p. 106)

From Starbo, he went to Skinnskatteberg, the valuable property with its smelting furnaces which he and Rudbeck owned jointly by purchase from the other heirs of Swedenborg's own mother. The town is situated some twenty-five miles southeast of Starbo.

Here, one of his first tasks was to make a formal appeal to the Bergscollegium for ultimate recognition as an Assessor. He had fully made up his mind as to the course he wished to pursue - the study of all things that had to do with mining. He wished now the appropriate position for such a career.

His letter to the Bergscollegium is dated Skinnstakkeberg, June 19, 1720:

       "As I desire nothing more highly than to have an

opportunity of being of use and actual service to your

Excellency and the highly renowned Royal Collegium," he

writes, "therefore, in view of this I make bold to come in

with an humble prayer that your Excellency . . . [etc.] will

be pleased to promote my purpose." (Doc. 1:46; ACSD 219 =

LM., p. 238-39)

The prayer was for advancement to "some salary and support in my position of Extraordinary Assessor, or to advance my fortune as your Excellency . . . [etc.] may find most agreeable." He was the more induced to make this application since, "for the sake of improvement in that which I have thought would be of use to my Fatherland, I have already used all that could come to me, whether from inheritance or otherwise, both for foreign journeys during four years, and afterwards in attending Herr Councillor of Commerce Polhem at the establishment of the dock and the sluice work, wherein I assisted him at my own expense, in humble compliance with the most gracious command of the late King Charles XXII. For the fourth year, I have had the honor to be a lowly servant in the Royal Collegium; and all else that I have been able to spare, I have used in the costly publication of printed writings, etc., whereby I have desired to signify my longing and intention . . . to have the opportunity and the means to be of use and humble service to your Excellency . . . [etc.]; and, in this I shall continue to the best of my ability."

The petition was duly received and filled - but nothing more. Bergenstierna appointed.

Swedenborg's presence at Skinnskatteberg at this time had to do with the proceedings in connection with Sara Bergia's will. In that which had been made in November 1713, she declares that "because of the righteous love which



has and does now exist between her husband, the Herr Bishop Jesper Swedberg, and herself" she wills "that his children shall own and inherit all the property, real and personal - with specified exceptions of personal property - which God has bestowed upon her, whatever it may be." Namely,

"the property Starbo with the appurtenances belonging thereto

in land, etc., and also one-half of upper Starbo's smelting,

and seven-sixteenths of the hearth at Marns, and [the whole

of] Prsthyttan."

All this was to be divided among Bishop Swedberg's children. See N. K. Tidn. 1927, p. 77. (ACSD 219, 318 C)

In addition to the above will was a document which the courts eventually regarded as having the validity of a duly witnessed will. It was signed by three witnesses, including Doctor John Hesselius, and was to the effect that the day before Sara Swedenborg's death, these three as witnesses had been called to her bedside to witness what she desired seen to after her death, namely:

1. That her granddaughter, Sara Lundstedt, the daughter of

Swedenborg's youngest sister Margaret, should have equal

share in her property with the other children,* "on which the

grandchild who sat on the bed by her grandmother, took the

Biskopinna's hand, kissed it, and thanked her."

* It is evident that since the original will had been made, Margaret Lundstedt, who was to have shared equally with her brothers and sisters, had died.

2. "That Assessor Well-born Herr Emanuel Swedenborg shall

have possession of Starbo, and shall buy the shares of the

other heirs, at a price to be fixed by arbitration,

Swedenborg meanwhile to enjoy the use of the property free

for a year."* (NKTid. 1927:77)

* It had always been Sara Bergia's intention that Emanuel should have Starbo. The Bishop, according to his own statement, "reminded her of this when I found that she was about to die; when she repeated the statement. But I begged her not to exclude the other children, when she said that they may have equal shares but Emanuel shall have Starbo alone, and he shall pay out the others." (Doc. 1:374).

This document, which was in the nature of a codicil, was endorsed by Bishop Swedberg as confirming his wife's will. Herr J. Unge, his son-in-law, likewise wrote on the document that he had nothing to oppose to it, since "it had been his parents' counsel, thought of long ago."

On June 21, 1720, the above documents - the will and the supplementary testament - were filed by Emanuel Swedenborg at Smedjebacken in the mining court for Starbo, and on the same day and in the same court, Petter Bergius, Biskopinna Swedenborg's brother, filed a protest against all the property going to Bishop Swedberg's children. (Acton-Lindh, p. 2; NKTid., 1927:78)

A protest was also file by Lars Benzelstierna on behalf of himself and his brother Eric Benzelius, presumably against the special favor shown to Emanuel Swedenborg. But Emanuel Swedenborg, in a supplementary memorial, explained that Eric Benzelius had given authority to his brother Lars not to protest against the will but to defend it.

On July 4th, the same protests were also filed in another mining court, being the juridical seat of certain of the property.



The will was also filed in Skara by Dean Junge, on October 10th, and at the same time, a protest was filed by Anders Swab and others, the Biskopinna's nephews.* (ACSD 222A)

* Rector Begius
/                                   /                            /
Helena m.                     Petter              Sara m. Bishop Swedberg

Anton Swab                                          (Who later m. Christ.
/              /                                          Arhusia)

Anders       Anton                                                 

The various protests were heard by the Court on February 23, 1721, when Swedenborg was present representing his brother Jesper, his brothers-in-law Unge and Lundstedt, and his niece Sara Lundstedt. The protest entered by Sara Bergia's relatives was declared to be outside the jurisdiction of the court. Lars Benzelstierna's protest was rejected, and the dying declaration of Sara Bergia - which made Sara Lundstedt a co-heir and gave Swedenborg valuable rights - was declared valid. (Acton-Lindh MSS., pp. 1-2)

However, the matter did not rest here, for on April 16, 1721, an agreement was made between Swedenborg and Lars Benzelstierna whereby they became equal owners of the whole of the valuable Starbo property. The agreement reads:

       "Since some strife has arisen between us concerning the

arrangement, I, Emanuel Swedenborg, exhibited to the Court

and showed by proof to be orally given by our late mother

. . . just before her death . . . concerning the right of

purchasing the Starbo property with all its appurtenances,

and also concerning . . . Miss Sara Lundstedt's receiving an

equal portion with all . . . Bishop Swedberg's children . . .

against all which I, Lars Benzelstierna, on behalf of my

brother . . . Dr. Eric Benzelius and myself, entered my

protest before the proper court; and, moreover, in view of

the disposition which exists with us on both sides, to settle

. . . this dispute in a friendly way, and in confirmation of

the close relationship between us. . .

       "I, Emanuel Swedenborg, on behalf of . . . Anders

Lundstedt . . . and Jonas Unge. . . and my brother Jesper

Swedenborg and myself, give to . . . Lars Benzelstierna the

right of purchase of one-half Starbo and its appurtenances,

such as Prsthyttan. . . Marns, etc., in proportion to the

price which is now fixed between us for the whole property .

. . namely, 32,000 dal. K. mt., and hereafter, freely to work

this property to our mutual profit . . .

       "On the other side, I, Lars Benzelstierna, on behalf of

. . . Doctor Eric Benzelius and myself, in view of the love

our stepmother . . . showed to Miss Sara Lundstedt, agree to

pay to Miss Lundstedt in the ratio of the two shares in the

Starbo property . . . which comes to . . . Eric Benzelius and

myself, 1400 dal. K. mt. At the same time, it is also agreed

that since . . . we own equal shares in the Starbo property,

and since I, Lars Benzelstierna, have now paid for that which

was lacking in the right of half ownership in

Skinnskatteberg's forge and Giesberg's smithy . . . neither

of us will lay claim to any right to a share which is in any

part in the other half . . . and, in the bargain, will . . .

share our advantage in whatever profit or loss that the

property . . . can afford or bring in."



With regard to the claims made by Sara Bergia Swedenborg's

children by her former marriage, it may here be noted that in

March 1723, Bishop Swedberg voluntarily settled these, in

order to avoid contention and dispute, for the sum of 12,000

dal. K. mt., in consideration of which payment, these "heirs"

agreed to give up all claims against Sara Swedenborg's

property. (ACSD 318 C)

After filing his petition at the mining court on July 4, 1720, Swedenborg returned to Stockholm. Probably he inquired at the Bergscollegium as to the status of his application for a salaried position, and then learned of the death, only a few days ago (June 25th) of Assessor Angerstein. He then determined to apply to the King himself. This he did in a letter dated Stockholm, July 9, 1720:

       "I am impelled in humility to come before your Royal

Majesty and in utmost humility to relate how that in your

Royal Bergscollegium the position of an ordinary Assessor has

become vacant by the removal of Assessor Angersten by death;

and also, at the same time, in humility, to request that on

this occasion your Royal Majesty, with royal grace, will be

pleased to remember me, his lowly servant, who during the

whole of his life has no higher desire than to get an

opportunity, by some humble service to bring into actuality

that duty which a subject owes to your Royal Majesty." (ACSD

220: LM., p. 240)

Thus Swedenborg commences his letter to the King, after which he explains that he puts forward his request because he has spent his means on foreign journeys and afterwards in the publication of his writings, thus, in that which he thought "might in time be of some use and service to your Majesty's Kingdom."

He then speaks of his appointment by Charles XII, of his work with Polhem, of his publishing books - and, in particular, of the book on Swedish Smelting Furnaces which he had handed into the Bergscollegium, and which "can be of use" to that institution. With the death of Charles, his fortune "now seems dead and extinguished," and so "he flees to that Royal Majesty who is now in Charles's exalted place."

Swedenborg's letter was followed a few days later (July 21st) by a letter from his father written to the King in the same sense. Despite this support, however, it was not Swedenborg but John Bergenstierna who later (1735) married Eliezer Swedenborg's widow who, on August 3rd, received the appointment to the vacant Assessorship. (ACSD 221; Almquist, p. 202).

This seems to have brought matters to a head, for after this Swedenborg was denied the right of signing his name to the Bergscollegium letters, and this by David Leijel who had been present in April 1717 when Swedenborg had taken the oath. Swedenborg, however, did not give up, and when on November 11th another of the Assessors died, he fully expected an appointment. But again he was passed over. So he determined, on November 21st 1720 to make a final appeal to the King. This appeal gives us an inner view of the opposition Swedenborg had hitherto been facing in the Bergscollegium. (ACSD 139)

       "Most mighty and gracious King," he writes, "I

acknowledge with respect all that your Royal Majesty's

Colleges are pleased



to do . . . yet your Majesty will not receive it ungraciously

that I take the liberty, in humility, to draw near and to


       "That half a year ago, after the late Assessor

Angersteen's removal by death, I was passed by, although I

then had the advantage of having been for the fourth year

Assessor Extraordinary in the Royal Bergscollegium; and

likewise, to state that at the same time, Herr Assessor David

Leyel refused to allow me to sign the letters of the

Bergscollegium, as I had one in the time of the late King,

and which, by virtue of my warrant, I have the right to do.

Yet, despite all this, I was in the humble hope of being

favorably remembered at the next opportunity, and

particularly at the present time after the removal by death

of the late Bergsrd passed by,* I am thereby shut out from

the hope of winning, by means of preferment in the Royal

Bergscollegium, any opportunity of showing my humble service

in that which is laid upon me.

       * Dr. Magnus Bromell had been appointed in Dec. 1719 assistant to Urban Hierne in the Chemical Laboratory of the Bergscollegium. He was appointed to succeed Kinmunde on Nov. 25th. Kinmunde had die don Nov. 11th, and this involved the promotion of the senior Assessor, and this of a new Assessor. (Almquist, Bergscollegium, p. 180.)

       "Since your Royal Majesty's Bergscollegium must

undoubtedly have had some part of justification for this

action, it is my most humble prayer . . . that your Royal

Majesty may be pleased . . . to examine the reason which led

to my being held unworthy.

       "I acknowledge that I have not as yet attained by my

years to the same wroth as others who were in service long

before me; nor have I had the good fortune humbly to attend

the Royal Collegium as auscultant or Bergmstare, and, in

consequence of this, have not been advanced to an

Assessorship by the recommendation of the Royal Collegium -

although I did not myself seek this position.* Neither have I

spent a long time in learning the mining ordinances, but have

sought to make up for this by using diligence and experience,

and acquiring such sciences as belong to metals and the

management of iron works." (ACSD 225A = LM., p. 243)

       * The meaning is that Charles XII had given it to him without his asking.

He then goes on to tell of his travels and of his appointment as Assessor Extraordinary by Charles XII. He also encloses a copy of the Royal Warrant and of the letter sent by the King to the Bergscollegium on the occasion of the appointment, to the effect that they were "to let him have a seat and voice in the College whenever he can be present." He tells also of his work with Polhem and of his printed works "On Mechanics, Geometry, Algebra, etc.," showing his will to "emulate in Sweden those who give out such things in foreign lands." (LM., p. 244)

He adds that he has made a special study of fire and furnaces, and refers to his projected work on mining.

       "For three years," he continues, "I have turned by

thoughts to chemistry and metals, and, besides, have found

out their interior geometry and the right proofs for the

experiments which have been set up by the chemists; and by

this, I suppose, no little use will hereafter redound to the

science in question." (Ibid. P. 245)



He considers it his duty to make this application, in the hopes that he may get the occasion "to strive for an end which I have proposed for myself." He refers to his fixed purpose to pursue the study of mineralogy and mining.

       "But," he concludes, "since against all expectation I

find myself twice passed by, no other course is left me than

to approach your Royal Majesty with an humble supplication,

and to request in the most humble way that I may enjoy grace

with your Majesty . . . which would give your Royal Majesty's

subjects encouragement to devote themselves to such work as

would prove to be most useful in your Royal Majesty's

Kingdom." (LM., p. 245)

Like other appeals, this also was without fruit. Swedenborg returned to Brunsbo during the holidays when on Christmas day his father was married for the third time. His bride was Christina Arhusia, daughter of a priest in Swedberg's native town Falun. The marriage took place nine months after the death of Sarah Bergia. In his Autobiography, the Bishop gives the reasons for this seeming haste:

"In my sad and troublesome state as a widower," he writes, "I

learned the truth of the wise Sirac's words, 'Where there is

no watch around, the goods fly away; and where there is no

wife, the servants run wild.' My daughters had left my house,

being married and living at a distance, and each of them had

her own household and her own responsibilities, so that I

could not avail myself of them. I must myself be occupied

with hard household care, and my powers began to leave me

more and more. And so it was necessary, and also because of

my approaching old age, that I should have a good wife."

(Doc. 1:166; Tottie, p. 273)

The bride "with her company" arrived at Brunsbo late on

Christmas eve, and the marriage was celebrated the next day

by Swedberg's son-in-law Unge. "Thank God," writes Swedberg,

on Jan. 2d, "she is a very capable person, so that I could

never have done better. You [Rosenadler] must follow my

example. Do not wait until it is too late." (Doc. 1:165;

Tafel, Letters, p. 65)

Soon after the holidays, the dispute over Sarah Bergia's will was again brought into court, and Swedenborg must perforce attend to it. On February 13, 1721, an objection was filed at one of the mining courts on behalf of Sarah Bergia's children by her former marriage, and the protestants demanded that an exact estimate should be made of all the real and personal property, and that it should not be distributed until the court had decided the matter. The petition was refused prior to a hearing of the heirs. On February 18th, Swedenborg and his brother-in-law Lars Benzelstierna answered on behalf of the heirs. (ACSD 229A)

A similar object was entered at the Stora Kopparberg Court, and this Swedenborg himself answered by the claim that the matter belonged only to the court of appeals.

We have no evidence of what became of these cases, but from the fact that the proof of Sarah Bergia's intentions was again offered to the court, and from the document of which we shall next speak, it would appear that for the present nothing further was done in the matter.

It will be remembered that under the terms of the will, Swedenborg and his brothers and sisters were to share in the profits of Starbo and



adjoining properties for one year, after which Swedenborg was to have the right to buy out the other sat an arbitrated price. When the year was up, Swedenborg elected to become part owner of these properties, the other partner being Lars Benzelstierna, the husband of his sister Hedwig. Among the reasons for this arrangement was probably the fact that Lars Benzelstierna, a capable miner, was resident at Starbo and managed the property which consisted of smithies and forges. In a contract dated April 16, 1721, Swedenborg, on behalf of himself, his brother Jesper, and his brother-sin-law Unge and Lundstedt, cedes half on the property to Lars Benzelstierna and his brother Eric for 32,000 dalers koppermint. The arrangement must have been doubly satisfactory since in Swedenborg's absence, Lars Benzelstierna, a capable mining engineer, remained as resident manager. (ACSD 233 C)

Thus, favorably situated financially and relieved of the actual management of his property, Swedenborg now determined to take that foreign journey for study and investigation, especially into mining matters, which he had so long desired. During this journey, he intended to publish several of his works, including Latin translations of works he had written in Swedish and some of which he had already published. His main intention, however, was to publish the three volumes (Mechanics, Fire, Hearths and Ores) of which he had given an outline in his letter to Eric Benzelius of May 2, 1720 (see above, p. 224).

By this time, his chemical studies had led him to a more or less definite formulation of a theory of the constitution of matter; he felt that he had discovered the interior geometry "of nature"; and it was his intention to set forth his new discoveries in their application to minerals and salts, etc., of various kinds. The work was to be entitled Principia Rerum Naturalium. It has been supposed that to this period may be ascribed the Principia Rerum Naturalium which is commonly known as the Lesser Principia (see Hyde, n. 145), but, as will be seen later, this work was not written until some years afterwards. (ACSD 225 A)

During the months preceding his departure, he was busily occupied in revising or writing the chapters of the first volume of his proposed series, namely, Mechanica. By this term, however, he did not mean what is usually designated Mechanics; what he had in mind was a treatise on chemistry, showing that all chemical elements are built up on mechanical principles. Thus he calls his Chemistry, Mathematica. (ACSD 244)

The idea seems first to have occurred to him in specific form in May 1720, when at Brunsbo he was so fortunate as to obtain access to a rich medical and chemical library which had come into the possession of Doctor Hesselius. In accordance with the plan of his proposed volumes on Mechanics, Fire and Furnaces, he writes to Benzelius on May 2, 1720:

"I am taking the chemical experiments of Boyle [etc.], and am

searching into nature in her leasts, comparing them with

geometry and mechanics, and am daily encouraged by new

discoveries in all that concerns the nature of simple

substances" (See above, p. 224)

Before entering upon his journey, Swedenborg had already written out his proposed treatises on Mechanics, Fire, and Hearths and Ores, and, as we shall see presently, he sent a list of the contents of this work for publication in the Acta Literaria Sueciae - a list which shows that the parts of Fire, Hearths, and Ores were dealt with only in very brief form. These were probably written in Starbo. At any rate, on February 21, 1721, he acted at Starbo as Godfather to Hedwig's daughter, Hedwig. (OQ. 1:303 = LM., p. 237; NKTid., 1917, p. 43)



Meanwhile, Swedenborg had the satisfaction of seeing himself introduced to the learned world as a contributor to the Acta Literaria Sucieae. The fourth number of that learned journal, which appeared in November 1720, contained an article based on his manuscript on the Rise and Fall of Lake Venner, which had been sent to Eric Benzelius as a contribution to the Literary Society. Swedenborg had written this article, based on his own observations during the preceding summer (see above, p. 210), and Professor Roberg now made his manuscript the basis of what appeared in the Acta Literaria Sueciae. The manuscript itself was consulted by Daniel Tiselius in preparation for his Utterligare Frsk, published in 1730, for he refers his read to its A' 9" (see pp. 50, 55).

Flattering to Swedenborg must also have been the long review by Professor Burman of his Algebra, which appeared in the Acta Literaria Sueciae in January 1721. The reviewer says of this work:

"Weighty in matter rather than in bulk," it "was at once

received with great acclaim"; and he continues: "The noble

author was born under a lucky star for the advancement of

learning, especially in mathematics, he being the first of

all our countrymen who has taken on himself not, only to lay

down the fundamentals of an analytic science in a remarkable

way, extremely easy and clear to all students even the more

uncultivated, but also to demonstrate, by examples selected

from many sources, the signal use of this most; excellent

art, especially in mechanics. Finally, he has done all this

in the common vernacular, contributing words, even such as

are of a technical nature, in a way which constitutes a most

happy omen for our country." (NP. 1929: 26)

What must have been even more gratifying to Swedenborg, on the threshold of his second journey to the learned world, was a reference to himself which appeared in a learned work, De Lapidibus Figuratis by Jacob Melle, the learned antiquarian and polyhistorian of Lbeck. This reference was only a footnote, yet it was the very first time Swedenborg, now thirty-two years old, had been noticed outside his native land and his own learned circle.

Melle's work was published in 1720, and came to Swedenborg's attention in April or May 1721 when, on his return to Stockholm, he received a copy of the work sent to him by the author, and probably addressed to him at the College of Mines. (LM., p. 247)

The footnote was in connection with the evidences of the existence of a flood in primitive times. It reads:

"Following John Woodward [and other authors], Emanuel

Swedenborg, Assessor of the Royal College of Mines in Sweden,

in a book written in the vernacular and published in octavo,

Stockholm, 1719, under the title 'Arguments taken from Sweden

to show that the heights of the waters and of the sea in the

primitive globe was due to a strong flood,' has recently

shown in clear fashion and with weighty arguments drawn from

the internal and external appearance of the land of Sweden,

and from the various things that have been found therein, how

widespread over our globe was the extension of this

destructive flow, that is to say, the Deluge in former times,

and the nature of the sings and indications of its pristine

fury which it has everywhere left behind it." (De Lap. Fig.,

p. 4; NP 1929:45)



Swedenborg lost no time in making some use of this notice of himself. On May 21, 1721, but prior to his departure for his journeying, he addressed a long letter to Melle. After acknowledging the letter's gift, he speaks of the valuable contributions to the subject of his studies made by Doctors John Hesselius and Magnus Bromell, in their extensive geological collections. He then expatiates on the proofs of a former deluge as set forth in his Height of Waters. In doing this, he instituted the beginning of what soon turned out to be a sharp controversy with a Leipzig professor -- the first and the last controversy in which Swedenborg ever engaged, of this controversy we shall speak later, merely mentioning for the present that in his letter to Melle, Swedenborg tells the learned world in Latin what he had before said in his Swedish work, as to his theory concerning the movement of great stones at the bottom of an ocean. He dwells also on the subsidence of the Baltic, and states that he himself has heard old people speaking of places now under the plough which a hundred years ago were navigable waters. All of this, he adds, tends to show that these changes are due not to Noah's flood but to the fact that long afterwards the lands of the north were buried under a deep ocean. If these conclusions wore confirmed by Melle's researches, he adds, we would have ground for believing:

"1. That the horizontal pressure of our world is subject to change, which follows if the ocean be depressed toward the poles and elevated (as it is said) toward the equator,
"2. And, consequently, the distances between the latitudes would vary.
"3. That, certain lands which are continents may formerly have been islands which in the subsidence of the sea and in process of time were united together." (Ibid. P. 252)

Swedenborg adds that there are other consequences which "I do not venture to present to the public until I am armed with many more proofs of experience."

Swedenborg sent this letter to the Literary Society in Upsala for publication in the Acta, accompanying it with a list of 15 Tractates which he proposed to publish abroad. Both the letter and the list were printed in the June Acta, which appeared in July. The list was prefaced with the
following note:

"On the eve of has extended journey, the noble Swedenborg has

sent us his letter to the learned Jacob Melle . . . He has

gone to the United Netherlands and perhaps farther, in the

company of learned men, celebrated in mathematics and

physics, in order to communicate his clear reflections fear

the purpose of shedding light on this branch of the sciences.

We add a list of the works which he has prepared for the

press, and which we suppose he will publish in Belgium during

the present year." (Bok. G. Prot., p. 50; ALS. 1721:209)

The list constitutes the larger part of the Table of Contents of what was later published as "A Forerunner of the Principles of Natural Things, or of new attempts to explain Chemistry and Experimental Physics geometrically." But, what is of some importance, in view of a question which we will discuss later, the list indicates a numerical designation of the chapters in relation to the whole work different from that which appears in the published work. The items in the list are marked I-XV, and with one variation they follow the exact order of the Chemistry.*

* We refer to the English translation with this title. This translation embraces three works published separately by Swedenborg: 1. Chemistry. 2. Fire. 3. Finding the Longitude; Building of Docks and Testing of Ships.



But no. 1, which is Part VIII in the published work, in the list is called Part I, and no. 3 (Part X of the published work) is called Part VI.

The last work which Swedenborg did before his departure was the writing out in Latin a brief summary of his new method of finding the longitude, a work to which he seems to have been greatly attached even as late as 1766. In the present writing, he proposes to present this method for the first time to the learned world, and in the last paragraph of the work, he promises to publish "very shortly" lunar tables and calculations. The work was completed by May 28th, and was communicated to the Upsala Society. (Bok. G. Prot., p. 51)

And now Swedenborg had completed the preparation for his second foreign journey. It was his intention, after going to Holland, to publish the works which he had prepared, to visit England, France, Italy, Venice, Vienna, Hungary, and finally Germany, with the main purpose of investigating mining works and the trade in metals. Such a journey would have extended over two years, and Swedenborg's contemplation of so extended a tour, and this when he was without any remunerative employment, is sufficient evidence that he was in comfortable financial circumstances. Doubtless, the whole journey would have been accomplished at this time; but, as we shall see, the discord in his own family on the matter of the inheritance forced him to break it off almost at the beginning, nor did he again have the opportunity of visiting the countries mentioned until twelve years later. (Doc. 1:407)

Swedenborg left Stockholm on June 28, 1721, his route lying via Helsingborg, Copenhagen, over Zealand and Fy to Flensburg and Hamburg, to Amsterdam. (Resebeskrifn., p. 4)

Among the "learned men" in whose company he went was his cousin Doctor John Hesselius.

       From 1714, when he finished his medical studies in

Upsala Hesselius was appointed Provincial Physician of West

Gothland, and from 1715 to the time of which we now speak he

had lived in Brunsbo with his uncle, the Bishop. The latter,

in his autobiography, after speaking of his own love of

music, says of Hesselius: "God also gave me the delight that

Doctor Hesselius plays well on the base viol, and every

evening he plays beautiful and godly psalms whereby I go to

bed with peace and happiness of mind." (SBL; Tottie 2:270)

Hesselius and Swedenborg - who was the younger by a few months - were not only close friends but were drawn together by a common love of searching into the hidden secrets of nature by the experimental path. They pursued experiments together in Brunsbo, and Swedenborg undoubtedly availed himself of the rich collection of stones and petrifactions which Hesselius had gathered together while resident in West Gothland, and which Swedenborg, in his letter to Melle, is careful to mention. See Bokwetts Gillets Prot. I:28, 33, 36, 29, 27, 39, 43, 45, 59.

At the time of which we write, Upsala was not able to give a medical degree, and it devolved upon all physicians to complete their medical studies in foreign universities. It was for this purpose that Doctor Hesselius, doubtless at the expense of the generous Bishop, was now Swedenborg's traveling companion on the first part of his proposed extended journey.

So far as the College of Mines was concerned, Swedenborg was quite free to do as he pleased without obtaining any leave; he still considered



himself an Assessor, however, and indeed viewed his foreign journey as undertaken with a view of perfecting himself in the service of the College of Mines.

On June 30th 1721, when just on the point of leaving Swedish soil, he writes to the College and its President, now Count Bonde:

       "As I am now about to undertake a new journey abroad, it

is my duty to make it known in writing to your Excellency

and, to the Honorable Royal College, especially as my only

purpose therein is more closely to inform myself concerning

foreign mining works, their condition and processes, and also

concerning that commerce which purely concerns metals. For

this end, I propose to visit the places where there are

mining works, and where metals are sold." If the College is

pleased with his well meant intention, and will "communicate

to me instructions and suggestions as to what I should

chiefly inform myself concerning, in accordance with this

information, this will be a highly useful assignment for the

better using of my time on that which can be of service to

the publish." (OQ. 1:241 = LM., p. 255; Doc., 1:407)

In three weeks he will be in Amsterdam where he hopes to receive some word from the College.

For observations at Helsingborg, see Miscellaneous Observations, p. 19.

Swedenborg arrived at Amsterdam at the end of July. Here probably he separated for a time from his cousin Hesselius who went to pursue his medical studies at the University of Hardewyk situated on the Zuiderzee, a University which was then much frequented by the Swedes.* In Amsterdam, Swedenborg at once proceeded to the printing of the MSS. He had brought with him, and which he published at his own expense. The publications, which were all anonymous, consisted of three works, namely, the Chemistry, Observations on Iron and Fire, and the Longitude. The first two of these works constitute in effect the series on Mechanics, Fire and Furnaces, of which Swedenborg has written to Eric Benzelius in May of the preceding year (see above, p. 224). Why Swedenborg published them anonymously is not clear - possibly since his name was as yet unknown, that they might receive an unprejudiced hearing. In case, the anonymity was not long preserved, for in the review that appeared early in the following year, Swedenborg was given as the author. Nor does Swedenborg seem to have had any special wish to remain anonymous; for, in a contemporaneous presentation copy he writes with his own hand: "Af Eman. Swedenborg," to say nothing of his presentation copy to Boerhaave, of which presently. (NP. 1929:70, 1900:20; ACSD 246A)

* Hesselius received his M.D. on October 4, 1721 (min.tal . H., p. 9). He then went to Amsterdam where he witnessed human dissections. He went also to Utrecht and Leyden, etc., see min.tal . Hesselius.

The chapter in this work on the round particles of air and water,* or a first draft of it, was originally written in January 1718 at Starbo, and it



had been Swedenborg's intention to print it as a separate work and dedicate it to Abbe Bignon. In the Prodromus it was probably completely rewritten.

* The water particles being round was also Polhem's belief, and in 1730 was the generally accepted theory, though many had "guessed" them long, cubical or parabolical (Tisel. Utterligare Frsk, pp. 12, 90, see also pp. 93, 97, 110).

The Prodromus, which was without dedication, opens with an address to the reader which is characteristic of Swedenborg's thought as to the necessity of now entering upon a philosophical interpretation of the wealth of material with which science had presented the learned world. He is astonished that despite this wealth, "the science of invisibles has remained hidden." Nothing has been discovered in nature that is not geometrical, he continues, and so he proposes to show that salts, metals, and elements are all geometrical and mechanical, consisting of "groups of particles varying in their shapes and portions."

This describes the general character of the work, as an attempt to explain the constitution of matter. Swedenborg's theory differs from the atomic theory inasmuch as (as observed by Mr. Strutt in his Introduction to the Chemistry, p. xxi) Swedenborg atoms were all alike, the differences produced in their compounds being due to their varying positions and arrangements; while the atom of the atomic theory is already a compound and different from other atoms. Thus Swedenborg revives, but in a new form, the ancient doctrine of the materia prima which is the origin of all things.

This is the sublime theory concerning the inmost constitution of matter which Swedenborg's brilliant mind had discovered as the universal key to the inner knowledge of chemistry; and in the Prodromus he applies this theory to the explanation of the phenomena displayed by water, salt, acids, nitre, oils, and lead. Unfortunately, the science of chemistry was as yet in its infancy, and many of the "facts" described by the experiments, were more or less unreliable due to inexact and faulty methods. The result could not be otherwise than that Swedenborg's specific conclusions, admittedly hypothetical, cannot be confirmed by the results of modern research. Nevertheless, his grand conception as to the ultimate constitution of matter remains and is being more and more approximated by the latest researches of the physicists. We may add that as first published, this work contained many typographical errors of a serious nature, all of which, however, have been carefully corrected in the English translation.

As already stated, the chapters in the published work are in the order in which they were announced in the Acta Literaria Sueciae; but after arriving at Amsterdam, and, indeed, after the work had been printed and some copies sent out, Swedenborg decided to add as a prefatory chapter an adapted form of his letter to Melle. The reason for inserting this letter as indicated at the end of Part XI of the Prodromus on the subject of salt. In the last paragraph of the Part, observes the author that a possible objection to his theory, that common salt originates in water, might be found in the existence of extensive salt mines far from the sea. But he promises to meet this objection by publishing a treatise on the depth of the Primeval Ocean (namely, a Latin translation of his Swedish work on the Height of Water) showing that our earth was formerly the bottom of an ocean. It was probably as a preliminary to this contemplated work that Swedenborg, after the whole Prodromus was issued, decided to introduce his Melle letter, which constitutes the first eight unnumbered pages of the work. (NP. 1929:70 note 3)



The fact that the work begins with Part VIII has led to the supposition that the "work itself" to which frequent references are made, was already written out, and that this work is what is now known as the Lesser Principia.* But the conclusion is untenable. This is indicated by the title of the Lesser Principia, namely, "The Principles of Natural Things drawn from Experiments and Geometry, or ex posteriore and priori"; but the title of Natural Things, or of New Attempts to explain Experimental Chemistry and Physics geometrically. Moreover, as indicated in the Prodromus, the contents of Parts 2-4 were to be the motion of round particles (Prod., pp. 1-7, 16, 17-23) in their natural situation (ib., 22); the pressure of the subtle matter around water particles (ib., 22); the pressure of the subtle matter round water particles (ib., 25), and dissipation of vapor in the clouds (ib., p. 19); and this in no way describes the Lesser Principia. Part 5, on particles of water (ib. p 29).

* This appears to have been Hyde's conclusion (n. 145), since he dates the Lesser Principia 1720.

The truth seems to be that the "work itself" had not been written. It was to treat in order of each of the chemical elements, somewhat as in the Prodromus, and Swedenborg probably drew up and numbered the order in which they were to be treated. Before he left home, the chapter on the Particles was to be 1, and that on the interstitices between the water particles to be chapter 6; but as published, these chapters were marked chapters 8 and 10.

The second of the works published by Swedenborg in Amsterdam was a small treatise of about fifty pages entitled New Observations and Experiments on Iron and Fire, and there can be little doubt that this little work is the sketch of parts 2 and 3 of the complete work which Swedenborg outlined to Benzelius, viz., 1. Mechanics. 2. Fire. 3. Hearths and Ores.

A cursory examination indicates that this little work is a resum of part of the larger Swedish work on Blast Furnaces which Swedenborg handed in to the College of Mines in the autumn of 1720, and it may be that the plates in the published work are the same as those referred to in the unpublished but not found there. The tractate ends with a description of a new kind of stove, the idea of which Swedenborg got from his study of blasting furnaces.

The third work published in Amsterdam consists likewise of about fifty pages, about half of which are occupied by the treatise on the Longitude, the rest of the work comprising a description of the Dry Dock similar to that which Swedenborg had already published in the fall of 1719. This is followed by a description of a dam constructed by Polhem and Swedenborg at Karlskrona, at the same time as the work on the dry dock; unfortunately, the three plates referred to in this work were not published and have never been found. And finally comes an entirely new "invention," namely, an ingenious method of testing small ship models with a view of ascertaining speed, loading capacity position of the masts, etc.

This work on Chemistry and its companion volumes may, therefore, be considered as a fulfilment of Swedenborg's wish, expressed in a letter to Eric Benzelius, dated December 1719, to get his works, both published and unpublished, translated into Latin and published in Holland, and himself to



visit foreign countries (see above, p. 212). Many years later, namely, in 1760, Swedenborg presented a copy of these works to his friend, Counsellor of Chancery, A.A. Stiernman; and on the flyleaf he wrote: "These lucubrations, which are first fruits, are given," etc. (Hyde, p. 35)

The Prodronus was reviewed in that prince of journals, the Acta Eruditorum in its February 1722 issue, where the review occupies five pages, Swedenborg's name had already appeared before the European learned world, first in Melle's book published in the fall of 1720, then in the Neue Zeitungen von Gelehrten Sachen, 1721, which reviewed his Height of Water in its March issue; his Longitude in its June issue, and his article on Lake Venner in its August issue. But to be reviewed by the Acta Eruditorum was a distinguished honor which stamped the seal of worthwhileness on an author, "The author of this Prodromus," commences the reviewer, "is the distinguished Assessor in the Swedish College of Mines, Emanuel Swedenborg." The review is, for the most part, a summary of the work; but note is made of the new terms introduced by the author,

"He here [in Part IX] uses terms*," says the review, "which

in the work itself he no doubt explains. But in the absence

of an understanding of these terms, his dissertations on the

figure of the particles of water are obscure." Again he

observes: "Because of the frequent use of new terms, it is

hardly possible to present the special points in a suitable

way." The reviewer concludes: "The author must be regarded

in general as having attempted to give a priori reasons for

the results established by experiments; and, in fact, to have

sought his ultimate reasons in the figures of particles,

their magnitudes, weights and interstices. He has used great

ingenuity and no less industry, but as to how much of truth

he has attained to in his theories, this may be left to the

judgment of others."

       * We suppose these terms are "particles of the fifth, sixth, etc., kind."

See New Philosophy 1952, p. 359s for a review of Swedenborg's Chemistry.

The April issue of Acta Eruditorum reviewed the tractate on Iron and Fire, again announcing Swedenborg as the author, and in its May issue it prints a lengthy review of the Longitude, in which it transcribes Swedenborg's method verbatim, and gives his printed figure. A more critical, though much shorter review, by Conrad Quensel, Professor of Mathematics in Lund, was printed in the Acta Literaria Suecia for January 1722, Professor Quensell points out certain deficiencies in the work, and especially in the plate, and also a certain amount of inexactness in the results to be obtained: but he concludes,

"the day, even though cloudy, is better than the mere

darkness of night."

which the editors of the Neue Zeitungen, in their extended notice of this review, render:

"It is perhaps better to know something rather than nothing

at all." (NP. 1929:78, 82, 87; ALS. 1722:270)

The Acta Eruditorum gives most favorable reviews of Swedenborg's description of the building of the dock and dam at Karlskrona, and of his method of testing the capacities of ships; in the last review, it reproduces Swedenborg's picture of his testing machine with the appropriate text.



The publication of these three works was completed by the end of October, and by October 21st, they were ready for distribution. On that day, Swedenborg sent specially fine copies to his old friend Preis, now Swedish Resident at The Hague, and to Doctor Boerhaave, the Professor of Anatomy in Leiden University and the leading physician and chemist of Europe. To Boerhaave's work on Chemistry, which marked a grand advancement in that science, Swedenborg owed much, and it must have been with feelings of peculiar reverence and gratitude that he inscribed on his presentation copy:

"To Doctor Herman Boerhaave, so highly renowned throughout

the world for genius, learning and experience, these attempts

are sent in friendship and respect by the author Emanuel

Swedenborg, Assessor of the College of Mines in Sweden."

With the publication of his manuscripts, Swedenborg has cleared the deck, as it were; nothing more of his writings remaining to be printed unless it be Latin translations from his Swedish tracts. And so, he now gives himself some respite. For a few days he makes a visit of recreation to The Hague, where he renews that acquaintance with Resident and Envoy Extraordinary Preis which had commenced at Utrecht eight years previously. Although twenty-two years younger, Swedenborg with his educated, clear-minded thinker and genial companion. A few days after leaving The Hague, Swedenborg writes to Preis from Leiden on November 8th, thanking him

"for the pleasant discourses concerning our economic

condition in Sweden, which shows the Herr Resident to be a

good patriot and to have clear penetration in all that is

needed by our country for its restoration. If good

intentions and clear understanding could help the raising of

Sweden, the Herr Resident would be the one on whom my vote

would fall, whose counsel should be followed over there."

(OQ. 1:307 = LM., p. 258)

Swedenborg stayed in Leiden during the whole of November, and here probably he heard and perhaps met the celebrated Boerhaave, then Professor of Anatomy. We may note that Boerhaave carried on human dissections, and it is more than probable that Swedenborg here took some medical and chemical lectures. He seems to have remained in Leiden some three or four weeks.

Early in December, he left Leiden for Amsterdam where doubtless she was joined by Hesselius who was to travel with him, at any rate, for a time. There was, moreover, a special purpose either anticipated or fulfilled in this visit to Amsterdam. For there, on December 9th, he witnessed the Russian Resident in Amsterdam stage a most wonderful and costly display of fire works in celebration of the peace of Nystadt and the assumption by Czar Peter of the title "Emperor of all the Russians."* (CMH. V:615, 543).

* In his letter to Benzelius, dated Liege December 15th, Swedenborg states that he saw these fire works in The Hague; but it is evident that this was a slip for "Amsterdam"; moreover, he wrote to Benzelius from that city early in December; see Bokwetts Gillets Protocoll, p. 63.

       The Peace of Nystadt (Finland) on August 30, 1721,

concluded the war commenced by Charles XII twenty-one years

before, and whose disastrous point was reached by Sweden at

Pultava in 1709. And now, by the Treaty of Nystadt, Sweden

ceded to Russia all her Baltic possessions, and therefore

ceased for ever to be one of the great powers. In return,

she received from Russia the sum of



two million Riksdalers and the promise to refrain from

interference in Swedish domestic affairs to allow Sweden to

import a certain amount of grain annually from her late provinces.

Naturally, Swedenborg and his cousin were not enthusiastic spectators at this celebration of the hated enemy of Sweden shoe victory had stayed the triumphant career of their beloved Hero, and whose triumph marked Sweden's humiliation.

Among the many Latin verses exhibited during the celebration, Swedenborg notes one in particular which he copies out, and at Leige, a few days later, by changing a few words, he gives it a meaning more harmonious with his Swedish sentiments. As composed for the Russians, the verse reads:

       Dec. 12/23 1721: (Op. P. 28)

Eagles triumphant in Mars, now triumph in Peace

Where erst stood Mars sits Peace with tender mien.

Two decades groaned the barbarous North,

       But now sweet Peace brings back the day of joy.

Where streams of blood, now nectar stream shall flow,

       'Tis Bacchus calls to arms when Mars is chained.

"Had it been permitted," he writes to Benzelius, "this could easily have been made to run as follows:"

Eagles triumphant by death (Morte),* thus triumph in Peace;

       Where erst stood Mars,** the Czar himself now sits;

A decade groaned the Russian North,

       But now sweet Peace brings back the day of joy.

Where streams of blood, now Nectar's streams shall flow,

       When Mars** is chained 'tis Bacchus*** calls to arms.

              * The death of Charles XII.

              ** Charles.

              *** The God of the Muscovites.

But whatever his thoughts as to the Russians, Swedenborg must have been greatly charmed at the truly magnificent fireworks which were displayed, and which were described at length in a Dutch journal of the day. They were displayed on the water side on a platform 80 x 44 ells in size, on which was erected a building of four stories representing the temple of Juno, 35 x 25 ells in area, 55 ells high, surmounted by an eagle over 6 ells high. (Eur. Merc., 1721: 282-88)

The first story of this temple was illumined at 5 p.m. on December 9th, after a sumptuous banquet attended by Prince Kuropatkin, the Czar's brother-in-law, and other dignitaries, and then at 8:30 p.m. came the fireworks. The temple of Juno was fired at the top when fiery arrows shot out, balloons were set off, mountains of fire were seen, fiery water wheels, etc. - the whole display lasting about two hours, to the continual accompaniment of music by the military bands.

During these days in Holland, Swedenborg's busy pen was never idle. He was constantly thinking of the consequences and applications of his theory



of the constitution of matter as propounded in the Prodromus, and his practical mind was active in the observation and noting down of all that he saw which might be of scientific interest. The result was a number of short pieces of a miscellaneous interest. The result was a number of short pieces of a miscellaneous character on all kinds of subjects, though chiefly scientific and practical.

These "thoughts" he sent to his brother-in-law in Upsala from time to time, in the hope that "they might be of use in my brother's conferences with those in the Society." Evidently, however, Swedenborg made two copies of them, for with a single exception, all these papers, which are still preserved among Benzelius's literary remains, were published a few months later in slightly altered form, together with many others. (OQ. 1:308 = LM., p. 261)

While in Leyden, Swedenborg's mind was peculiarly active on subjects developing out of his recently published Prodromus. In November he wrote an article on a subject probably suggested by the frost which doubtless then made its appearance, namely, the production of figures, particularly vegetable forms, by frozen water. After relating an observation of a mushroom-like crystallization he had noticed on the ice near Brunsbo, in the winter of 1718, he suggests that these formations indicate that hey originate in "the form, position, equilibrium, etc., of particles," and that they are all produced mechanically. (Misc. Obs. Pt. III:81)

These thoughts lead him to write another article on the fluidity of water, which he maintains is due to a "subtle matter" which, under extreme cold, escapes in the form of a hot vapor, or is confined in small cells or holes in the frozen water. (Ibid. P. 94)

An article of a different kind, which he wrote in Leiden - prompted thereto perhaps by a chemical lecture by Boerhaave - was on the impossibility of transmitting metals, especially to gold. This he endeavors to show on scientific principles, by pointing out that each metal has its own peculiar basic particles, and that the particles of gold are larger and heavier as shown by experiments. He ends by the reflection that the attention of the chemist should be given not to the vanity of alchemy but to advancement in the science of separating metals, as, for instance, gold from copper, etc. (Ibid. II:75)

The most important of the articles Swedenborg writes in Leiden was a series of two which were subsequently published in the Miscellaneous Observations under the heading Hypothesis. These are on the Figure and Size of Elementary Particles, on their power and on their undulation and vibration. Here, for the first time, Swedenborg outlines those thoughts which he subsequently developed in the Lesser Principia, and which reached their fruition in the Principia. (Ibid. III:83, 87)

He lays down three things which are essential to any just knowledge of the secrets of Nature "which are involved in the natural mechanism of particles:" (Ibid. P. 84)

1. That nature acts by things most simple, and that her

elementary particles must be of the most simple and least

artificial form. 2. That the beginning of nature is the same

as the beginning of geometry, that is to say, the origin of

natural particles is from mathematical points which form

lines, these forming areas, and these bodies; thus everything

in nature is geometrical.



3. All these elements are together and can be moved in one

place and naturally, without impediment. These are the three

points which must be taken as axioms; then, he adds, we must

be guided by experience and refuse to advance a step without

her leading; for in order to make up nature from one's own

mind, and to proceed ex priori to the knowledge of things

posterior, a man either must be divinely wise, or he will

take the densest shade for light. With these axioms and this

guide, says Swedenborg, "I believe we shall more easily be

admitted to the exploration of natural things wherein is

nothing artificial and alien to the rules of mechanism."

He then goes on to declare that particles of air, ether,

fire, differ only in size; that they must be round or

bullular, must original in mathematical points, and must have

a central, a progressive, and a vibratory motion; and,

finally, that all particles consist of crustals, and he

explains the permanence of these crustals in their place by

the equilibrium exercised by the pressure of the outside

element, and the pressure of the contents of the particle.

All this, however, is mere hypothesis, and it may be noted that when printed in Miscellaneous Observations, this and the following chapters wherein this matter is discussed, are headed "Hypothesis," all other chapters being headed "Observations." The theory put forward is merely an hypothesis, and, says Swedenborg, until it is proved, it "should be held as highly uncertain, hypothetical and imaginary."

Following this, and also written in Leiden, came an essay related to the same subject, namely, on the power and motion and on the undulation and vibration of bullular particles. Here Swedenborg shows that this power and motion increase in the higher order of particles; when air vibrates, ether undulates, thus causing a vibration in our sensory members; this explains how sound can enter where air cannot. So, when ether vibrates, light undulates and results in sight.

Swedenborg conjectures the relative ratio of vibration to be Air 1, Ether 300, and light 900, the vibration of light as compared to air being thus 800,000 to 1. It may be noted that Swedenborg, at this time, seems to take light to be a bullular particle in the next degree above ether; but, as he again emphasizes, his bullular hypothesis is a mere supposition.

The next article written in Leiden, and suggested perhaps by Doctor Boerhaave's lectures, was on the capillary circulation of the blood, giving reasons for his belief that instead of running more slowly in the fine capillaries, the blood moves there with greater rapidity. He illustrates this by the rapid ascent of water in capillary tubes, trees, blotting paper, etc., which he holds is due to the smallness of the water particle. He makes no suggestion of the doctrine of the division of the blood globule which he developed later after reading Leeuwenhoek's works. (Misc. Obs. II:78)

The last article is a very practical one on how to retain heat in rooms, showing the use of wainscoting and tapestry, the desirability of thin or wooden walls, and of low windows, etc. This was never included in his Miscellaneous Observations, but was printed in the Acta Literaria Sueciae after Swedenborg's return from abroad. (Misc. Obs., p. 153)



It would appear that his purpose in sending them was that they might be printed in the Acta Literaria Sueciae. But, if this was the case, he afterwards changed his mind and determined to print them together with other articles yet to be written, in a volume of Miscellaneous Observations. See p. 241 above.

As will be noted later, he sent copies of these Observations to Benzelius on December 12th and December 13th, after which he ceased sending them. The conclusion, therefore, is that after December 15th (probably after April 1722), he decided to publish these articles himself, and wrote to Benzelius to this effect, but gave him permission to publish the article on the Preserving of Heat in Rooms in the Acta Literaria Sueciae. It was printed in that journal for April 1722 which appeared in June 1722. The above conclusion is confirmed by the fact that on April 12th, 1722, the Bokswetts Gille decided to publish Swedenborg's article on Slat in the next number of the Acta Literaria Sueciae, but that instead thereof, his article on the Conservation of Heat was inserted. (Bok. G. Prot., p. 65)

The main reason why Swedenborg went to Amsterdam, the financial center of Holland, was to arrange financial matters in preparation for his further journeying. Here, on December 10th, he posted to Eric Benzelius the articles which he had written in Leiden.

Swedenborg had now given up his first intention of going from Holland to England, and determined instead to visit the mining districts in Germany. From Amsterdam, therefore, he and Hesselius went to Aix-la-Chapelle where they stayed a few days, and while there they examined the strata of shells to be found north of the city - in a site now occupied by the public park. Swedenborg wrote on these and gives a number of illustrations. (Bok. G. Prot., p. 68; Misc. Obs. I:15; see further as to Aachen, I:236-38)

They then went to Liege, then a part of the United Netherlands. There, Swedenborg became professionally interested in the rolling and cutting mills used for the manufacture of iron bars and hoop iron. Much Swedish iron was used here, besides the inferior iron of Leige and Brabant, and Swedenborg saw with regret the loss caused to Sweden by the absence of such works there. He was especially interested in the rolling mills, and they later served him as a means for suggesting something similar for Sweden. (Doc. 1:481)

In Liege he continued that geological curiosity which he had so frequently manifested in his wanderings around West Gottland. His particular interest was excited by geological specimens found in a small hill which is now used as a park; and particularly in a stone there found with vari-colored circles. With these he conducted some chemical experiments in order to ascertain the cause of these circles, and he embodies his conclusions in a paper sent from Liege (Luik) to Upsala. (Misc. Obs. I:23: Phot. 1;193; for experiments at Liege, see MO. I:27)

He and Hesselius stayed at Liege two weeks, during which Swedenborg busily occupies himself in writing, besides chemical experiments. (Ibid.)

Among the papers written here was one of some length on the Circular Crusts found in certain stones in the neighborhood of Liege. This he posted to Benzelius on December 23d N.s., together with his short note on the Fireworks seen in Holland. (Ibid.)



He also wrote an account of salt making in Sweden, and of the attempts made by Polhem and himself to develop it. The article was occasioned by Swedenborg's coming across a number of Sammlung von Natur und Medicin. . . Kunst for September 1717, where reference is made to the salt privileges given to Polhem; together with critical remarks as to the poor results; in any case, this article on salt making is part of the fulfilment of Swedenborg's determination expressed in December 1719, to translate his Swedish treatises into Latin that they might have a wider audience. See Nathorst, page 42. (Saml. V. Nat. u. K. 1717:102; see ACSD 252A; OQ. 1:296 = LM., p. 223)

He also describes an ingenious mathematical way to ascertain the individual weights of mixed metals, and an ingenious device which he calls the Glass of Archimedes, whereby to determine without calculation the proportions of the individual metals found in an alloy. He also wrote a short article on a peculiar stone found in Liege. (Misc. Obs. II:70, 72, 75, I:9)

Perhaps his room in Leige was smoky, or it may be his chemical experiments discovered them to be ill-ventilated, and his active mind at once thought concerning remedies. At any rate, during the few days he was in Liege, Swedenborg took the time to write a very practical little tract on the causes of smoking chimneys and the remedy. The above five articles were sent to Benzelius on December 26th N. S. (Ibid., II:61, I:9)

He left Liege together with Hesselius* on December 27th N. S. (Dec. 16th O. S.), proceeding to Aix-la-Chapelle where also, and likewise in the nearby Stolberg, he made his geological observation. Then to Cologne, Dillenburg, the Castle of Blanckstein, Marburg, Cassel and Leipzig, everywhere observant, everywhere curious; descending pits, being lowered into mines, questioning workmen. (OQ. 1:30 = LM. p. 261; Misc. Obs. I;15, 16, II:44, IV:131, 133)

* Hesselius was in Brunsbo in the summer of 1722 (Bokwetts Gille Prot., p. 73), but he went to Aix-la-Chapelle (ibid., p. 68).

During all this journeying, he was writing on a wide variety of subjects. Thus he writes an essay on the improvement of stoves, and another on fireplaces - perhaps inspired thereto by the discomforts of winter travel. He describes a cheap method of making an air pump with a table, a leather bag, and some mercury; air pumps were then extremely expensive. Many of his essays are on geological subjects with particular attention to the lawyers observed in different mountains, and in this connection he takes occasion in one tract or another to convey in Latin what he had already stated in Swedish in his Height of Water, but now with new evidence. (Misc. Obs. I;4-7, 1, 2, 3)

His mind is always busy as to the causes of the phenomena he observes. What is the origin of the remarkable hot springs he observed at Aix-la-Chapelle, he asks. Many learned men have written on this subject, he says, "yet, without contradicting them, I wish to state my own opinion" - which he proceeds to do. He is doubtful as to there being a fire in the center of the earth but holds that heat is stored up in many subterranean places and may continue for centuries - a position which he confirms from his experience in iron foundries burning charcoal. Water becomes impregnated with various substances, and by these heated subterranean places may become heated, and so our spas. (Ibid., pp. 31, 28)



Theoretical questions occupy him very greatly, but always with a view of testing his hypotheses by experiments. Thus, even on his travels he is constantly making chemical and other experiments. As an example of these, we adduce the following:

He scraped some fine powder from granite rocks and mixed it

thoroughly with water in a large glass vessel. Afterwards it

was left to settle, which it did in about six hours, forming

a sediment which, however, was not compact since it readily

moved on tilting the glass. He then dropped in a little sand

which passed right through the sediment. He then very

carefully placed a wood shaving at the very bottom of the

vessel, but it quickly rose up right through the sediment.

Then he inserted small fish in the same way, but they also

rose. (Misc. Obs., I:14)

From all this he concludes that the power from which granite

mountains came was originally very fine; that it gradually

subsided to the bottom of the ocean; that while it still

retained its fluidity, hard substances would sink through it,

and lighter would rise to the surface, and marine creatures

would escape from it before it had attained too hard a


The powder in his experiment had not hardened in two days,

and its surface was disturbed by a disturbing of the

overlying water - which Swedenborg thinks accounts for the

irregularities and inequalities observed in granite


The question of the origin of matter is very active with him. Of the primeval matter of the earth, he holds that the planets owe their origin to a hard chaos; but that he does not mean by this anything material is shown by his hypothesis that the original matter of the earth was water, which he confirms in several ways. This water became encrusted with a hard matter on the surface; the crust disrupted and sank; at the same time, salt was formed at the bottom of the sea. (Ibid., p. 28)

This is all theoretical, yet he returns to it again and again, even in the midst of his busy and observing travels. Thus, he writes concerning the figures of fire and water, on the mechanism of the bullular particles, on the centripetency of heavy bodies in a bullular element; and he applies his bullular theory to the explanation of the phenomena of phosphorescence and of other phenomena. (Ibid., III:92, 96, 100, 106)

Swedenborg left Leige for Leipzig via Cologne, Dillenburg, Limburg, Marburg, Cassel,* Stolberg and Brunswick, arriving at Leipzig toward the end of 1721. While in Leige, however, Swedenborg and Hesselius had busied themselves in gathering vegetable petrifactions, a number of which are illustrated by Swedenborg in an article published in the Miscellaneous Observations (I:13). The ten or twelve months occupied by the journey were occupied by visits to mines and by much writing and translating. At Leipzig he at once gathered together his various essays in order to publish them under the heading "Miscellaneous Observations, Parts 1-3." This work, the first fruits of his travels, he dedicated to Count Gustaf Bonde, a



learned man of noble rank who, on January 6, 1721, and thus after the rejection of Swedenborg's last appeal for a salaried position in the College of Mines, had become the President of the College. It may be noted that on the title-page of this work, Swedenborg calls himself "Assessor of the College of Mines in Sweden."

* For an experiment tried at 7 Cassel, see Miscellaneous Observations I: pp. 16, 17, 18.

Swedenborg remained in Leipzig only a short time and partly - as we are told by a writer in the Historie der Gelehrsamkeit "for the most part incognito," whatever that may mean. This Historie der Gelehrsamkeit was a learned or literary journal edited by Professor Clodius of Leipzig University, being in May 1722, and Swedenborg seems to have had some conversations with the writer in question, as shown by the latter's view of Miscellaneous Observations, of which we shall speak later. (ACSD 264A) Swedenborg left Leipzig before the work was issued from the press, leaving the proofreading to be done by another. The result was decidedly unfortunate; indeed, so many were the typographical errors that Swedenborg not only had a page of "Errata" added to the book, but on this page he tells his reader:

"Since by the neglect of the proofreader, innumerable errors

have crept in, it is hardly worthwhile making corrections.

Because of these errors, the reader ought to throw this

impression away as he will soon have another and more correct

The more glaring errata are then pointed out. (NP 1929:100)

It is evident that Swedenborg received the final proof after he had left Leipzig, when it was too late to make the numerous corrections that were needed. Hence the note. But, in order that the reviewers might not be misled, he sent a copy with his own autograph corrections to the Editor of the Historie der Gelehrsamkeit, and probably also to the Editor of the Acta Eruditorium, Johan B. Mencke, who was also the Editor of the Neue Zeitungen von Gelehrten Sachen. (Ibid.; Brokhaus, s. v. Mencke)

Before reaching Leipzig, Swedenborg had probably received an invitation to visit Duke Ludwig Rudolph of Blankenburg in the Hrts.* This Duke was extremely keen in all things that concerned mining, the principal industry of his dukedom, and was ever ready to support all learned, scientific men who promised to advance that industry. Swedenborg had already been in Blankenburg; see Misc. Obs., p. 118. From Duke Ludwig Rudolph, Swedenborg received not only permission to visit the Hartz Mines but also a grant of money to pay his expenses. Whether he met the Duke in his own capital Blankenburg, or in his brother's capital Brunswick, is not known; it is not improbable that he met him in both places (Resebeskrifn., p. 4)

* Hartz Mountains south of Brunswick.

In any case, it would seem that from Leipzig Swedenborg went to Blankenburg, visiting Eisleben on his way. Here, of course, he examined the copper mines with professional interest. We can well imagine also that his mind was stirred by this visit to the birthplace of Luther, the founder of that church of which his father was a bishop. (See De Cupro p. 168; Misc. Obs., IV pp. 117-18)

Having obtained at Blankenburg permission to visit the mines in Ludwig Rudolph's territory, he then proceeded to the Hartz. Here he visited the Baumann Caverns, famous for their remarkable stalactites; also the caves of Schartzfeld where are found so many petrified bones; and the copper mines of Lauterberg. See Miscellaneous Observations, Part IV, Dedication (p. 112).



The visit to Baumann's Caves led him to write down some thoughts as to the origin of stalactites. These he ascribes to the dripping of water which also, as he thinks, furnishes the origin to "stony crystals." As to its being the origin of stalactites, he confirms this by the resemblance of the latter to icicles caused by dripping water, the difference between them being that whereas in icicles the spaces between the water particles are empty, in stalactites they are filled with a substance carried by the dropping water - a conclusion, he adds, "which may be taken as established until experience teaches the contrary." (Misc. Obs., IV:127)

He confirms this by an examination of the dripping water in Baumann's Caves, which he finds to be impregnated with stony particles, "making the skin dry and rough as if it had been bathed with a solution of vitriol or alum." But he distinguished this water from the water which petrifies vegetables, bones, etc. - of the latter of which he found so great a collection in the caves at Schartzfeld; and this he confirms by the fact that in these petrified bones, their osseous character was still preserved, none of the interstices having been filled, as shown in a number of specimens which he gathered and preserved, including some which were embedded in stalactites. This petrifying water, he conjectures, is more subtle in character than the dropping water, and it oozes through the harder stones. (Ibid., p. 130)

In this connection he is led to some reflections as to the origin of mineral ores.

Some authors, he remarks, referring probably to Urban Hjrne,

have supposed them to be caused by solar or central fire; but

this he doubts on the ground that often the deepest veins are

the richest, and that where these veins are found, the

temperature is sensibly colder. He admits that possibly the

mineral ores themselves might owe their origin to some kind

of fire, even from solar or planetary rays, but he doubts

that fire was the agent which deposits them. This agent, he

maintains, is water which