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Adam McLean

Adam McLean (born 1948, in Glasgow) is a Scottish writer on alchemical texts and symbolism. In 1978 he founded the Hermetic Journal which he published until 1992 during which time he also started publishing the Magnum Opus Hermetic Sourceworks, a series of thirty-nine editions (to 2011) of key source texts of the hermetic tradition.



McLean developed an interest in alchemy in his youth which has continued throughout his life. Located in Glasgow, McLean accessed the wealth of alchemical texts located in The Ferguson Collection in Glasgow University Library, the Young Collection also in Glasgow, and the John Read Collection at University of St Andrews. From 1990 to 2002 McLean’s work was supported through the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica.

Aside from his prolific writing and publishing efforts, McLean has contributed to the study of alchemy through the collection, cataloguing and archiving of alchemical texts; the creation of alchemical art and study courses; and the establishment of web resources that bridge the interests of scholars and esotericists.[1]


Since the early nineteen-eighties, Adam McLean has been credited as a pioneer in the resurgence of English language alchemical texts, creating a huge expansion in interest at both a scholarly and popular level.[2][3] In 1995, he founded The Alchemy Website, greatly increasing the availability of alchemical texts and art for a general audience. John Granger named McLean as one of the three figureheads of modern alchemical influence alongside Carl Jung and Titus Burckhardt.[4]


  • A Treatise on Angel Magic (Weiser Books, 2006) ISBN 1-57863-375-3
  • A Commentary on the Mutus Liber
  • The Alchemical Mandala
  • The Rosicrucian Emblems of Daniel Cramer


  1. ^ Adam McLean. “The Alchemy Website.” From interviews and autobiographical information. Retrieved 2011-12-30.
  2. ^ Urszula Szulakowska. Alchemy in Contemporary Art. Surrey, 2011. p.5 ISBN 978-0-7546-6736-0
  3. ^ Mike Dickman. Intellectual Cantilenae in Nine Triads upon the Resurrection of the Phoenix by Michael Maier. p.1. Glasgow. 1992. ASIN: B001ACAK7U
  4. ^ John Granger. "Alchemy: Jung, Burckhart, or McLean?" April, 2007.

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