Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Turner, Robert (fl.1654-1665)
TURNER, ROBERT (fl. 1654–1665), astrologer and botanist, was born at ‘Holshott’ and matriculated from Christ's College, Cambridge, in 1636, graduating B.A. in 1639–40. In 1654 he published ‘Mikrokosmos. A Description of the Little-World. Being a Discovery of the Body of Man,’ London, 8vo. In 1657 he issued ‘Ars Notoria: the Notary Art of Solomon,’ London, 8vo, an astrological treatise, and in 1664 ‘Botanologia. The Brittish Physician: or, The Nature and Vertues of English Plants,’ London, 8vo, a work chiefly devoted to the medicinal virtues of herbs, but containing much curious incidental information. A new edition with a portrait of Turner appeared in 1687. Turner's latest preface is dated from London in 1665, and it is possible that he was one of the victims of the plague in that year.
He was the author of the following translations:
- ‘Ἔσοπτερον Ἀστρολογικόν. Astrologicall Opticks. Compiled at Venice by Johannes Regiomontanus and Johannes Angelus,’ London, 1655, 8vo.
- ‘Henry Cornelius Agrippa his Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy,’ London, 1655, 4to.
- ‘Paracelsus of the Supreme Mysteries of Nature,’ London, 1656, 8vo.
- ‘The Compleat Bonesetter, written originally by Frier Moulton,’ London, 1656, 8vo; 2nd ed. 1665, with portrait [see Moulton, Thomas].
- ‘Sal, Lumen, et Spiritus Mundi Philosophici. Written originally in French, afterwards turned into Latin by Lodovicus Combachius,’ London, 1657, 8vo.
- ‘Paracelsus of the Chymical Transmutation, Genealogy, and Generation of Metals,’ London, 1657, 8vo.
[Granger's Biogr. Hist. iv. 89; Pulteney's Progress of Botany in England, i. 180; Notes and Queries, 1st ser. xi. 467.]