Reviewed by Matt Johns
The titular magician is Count Alessandro Cagliostro, a famed Mason who was arrested by the Inquisition in Rome as â€œan Enchanter occupied with unlawful studiesâ€ and condemned to life imprisonment.
This book sets out to uncover the true history of the Count, portraying him as a philanthropist who tried to bring only knowledge and enlightenment to the Masons with his Egyptian Masonry, against most surviving church documents that claim he is a fraud and trickster.
As records from the Countâ€™s times (the late 1700â€™s) are few and far between, much of the content in the book is conjecture, based upon hearsay, news articles of the time and the other few remaining print sources still surviving.
While fascinating at times, and including a reprint of an entire Egyptian Masonic rite, due to the lack of historical records, it draws no definite conclusion about the Count. Â Written by an occult specialist and a Scottish Freemason, it can hardly be seen as an unbiased point of view.