Prophecy and Power:

Astrology in Early Modern England

Patrick Curry

ISBN: 978-1-907767-30-2
10 May 2024
£23.99/ $29.99 Paperback

Patrick Curry‘s Prophecy and Power, first published in 1989, represents a seminal moment in the new historiography of astrology. Taking a non-judgemental view of a practice which had frequently been misrepresented, Curry questions simple demarcations such as magic, science and religion, and focuses instead on how astrology was used and conceptualised in seventeenth-century England. He opens up a window into astrologers’ universe of discourse, a cosmos in which all things are connected, and sustained by meaning and symbol. The book contributes significantly to our understanding of wider cultural developments in the seventeenth-century, as the culture of the Renaissance gradually turned Into what we now know as the modern world, as well as offering insights into astrology’s philosophy, practice and cultural function.

This new edition includes a forward by H. Darrel Rutkin, of the Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia


Table of Contents

  • Foreword: H. Darrel Rutkin
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Part I: From Heyday to Crisis 1642-1710
  • Chapter 2: Astrology in the Interregnum
  • Chapter 3: Astrology in Crisis
  • Part II: Life After Death
  • Chapter 4: Popular Astrology: Survival
  • Chapter 5: Judicial Astrology: Decline
  • Chapter 6: High Astrology: Disappearance
  • Chapter 7: The Reform of Prophecy


Patrick Curry is a tutor in the Sophia Centre at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David. He was formerly a Lecturer at Bath Spa University, where he co-taught the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astronomy, and a Lecturer in Religious Studies at the University of Kent (Canterbury). He is the Editor-in-Chief of the online journal The Ecological Citizen. For his other publications please visit his website.

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