Phantoms Or Bees?

NPG D28020; Thomas Allen

In those dark times, astrologer, mathematician and conjuror were accounted the same things, and the vulgar did verily believe [Thomas Allen] to be a conjuror. He had a great many mathematical instruments and glasses in his chamber, which did also confirm the ignorant in their opinion, and his servitor (to impose on freshmen and simple people) would tell them that sometimes he should meet the spirits, coming up his stairs like bees.

from John Aubrey, Brief Lives (1972 edition edited by Oliver Lawson Dick)

2 thoughts on “Phantoms Or Bees?

  1. Mr. Allen’s high forehead gives him a look similar to that of Exeter from the movie ‘This Island Earth’.


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