Encyclopedia of Renaissance Philosophy

Living Edition
| Editors: Marco Sgarbi

Lilly, William

Born: 1 May 1602 Diseworth, Leicestershire
Died: 9 June 1681, Hersham, Surrey
  • William Burns
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-02848-4_517-1


William Lilly was the best known astrologer of seventeenth-century England. He published a popular almanac series, a textbook, and pamphlets focusing on events of the day both political and celestial. Lilly saw astrology as a unified tradition stemming from Ptolemy and invoked the authority of ancient, Islamic, medieval, Renaissance, and contemporary astrologers without excluding any particular group or school.

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  1. Lilly, William. 2005. Christian astrology. New York: Cosimo Classics.Google Scholar
  2. Lilly, William. 1681.The last of the astrologers; Mr William Lilly’s history of his life and times from the year 1602 to; reprinted from the second edition of 1715 with notes and introduction by Katharine M. Briggs. London: Folklore Society, 1974.Google Scholar


  1. Capp, Bernard. 1979. English Almanacs, 1500–1800: Astrology and the popular press. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Curry, Patrick. 1989. Prophecy and power: Astrology in early modern England. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Geneva, Ann. 1995. Astrology and the seventeenth century mind: William Lilly and the language of the stars. Manchester: Manchester University Press.Google Scholar

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© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.George Washington UniversityWashingtonUSA