Codex Seraphinianus 40th Anniversary Edition
January 29, 2022 4:26 PM - Subscribe

Rizzoli has re-published Codex Seraphinianus in a very handsome new 40th anniversary edition.

Codex Seraphinianus was first published in 1981 and has subsequently been republished in a number of editions. It has been mentioned previously on MeFi. It might have been inspired by the Voynich Manuscript. It is famous for two main reasons:
- the colourful fantastic artwork of bizarre creatures, plants, machines, architecture, and so on
- the curly invented alphabet that constitutes the text.
I bring it up again because Rizzoli published a very handsome 40th anniversary edition in 2021. Regular and Deluxe. Previous editions have become more and more difficult to find, and it is refreshing to see a new edition with additional material become available.

As a bonus, check out the Wikipedia entry on asemic writing.
posted by Multicellular Exothermic (2 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
The Deluxe version should be packaged with some psilocybin, to help absorb the plot.
posted by whatevernot at 3:54 AM on January 30 [3 favorites]

I've had this on my Amazon watchlist for more than a decade - this last Christmas it came back into print and my in-laws bought me a copy. So good, so surreal and unsettling and familiar. And it came wrapped in a paper band with a quotation from Italo Calvino, one of my favourite authors:
Like Ovid of the Metamorphosis, Serafini believes in the continuity and permeability of all areas of existence. The anatomical and mechanical exchange morphologies: instead of hands, a human arm will end in a hammer or a pair of pincers; legs are supported by wheels, not feet. The human and vegetal complete each other. Take the plate on the cultivation of the human body. We see trees growing from a head, grass sprouting from the palm of a hand, and carnations bursting from an ear. The vegetal world espouses commodity. The zoological joins with the mineral. Every aspect of architecture is allied with the geological, the heraldic is united with technology, as are primitive and urban, written words and living organisms.
posted by Paragon at 2:35 AM on January 31 [1 favorite]

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