Publisher Information: London: John Churchill, 1843.
Braid, James (1795?-1860). Neurypnology; or, the rationale of nervous sleep, considered in relation with animal magnetism. xxii, 265, [1, addenda and errata]pp. London: John Churchill; Edinburgh: Adam & Charles Black, 1843. 170 x 107 mm. Original green cloth, blindstamped, title in gilt on spine, tiny split in front hinge, small stain on back cover; boxed. Very good copy. Gift inscription dated 1845 on front free endpaper.
First Edition of the first full-length scientific treatise on what is now known as hypnotism. Braid, a Manchester surgeon, began a scientific investigation of mesmerism in the early 1840s and soon became convinced that the effects produced did not depend on a physical “magnetic influence” passing from practitioner to subject, but instead were subjective phenomena caused by physiological changes in the person mesmerized (he would later reject his early physiological theory for others that gave greater recognition to suggestibility and psychic state). When he published Neurypnology Braid did not yet have a full understanding of the psychological processes involved in hypnosis, believing that hypnotic phenomena were produced by functional changes in the nervous, muscular, circulatory and respiratory systems. However, he did recognize that hypnosis was a subjective phenomenon, dependent entirely on the state of mind of the hypnotized and not on any mystical fluid or occult magical power wielded by the hypnotizer. Braid's methods of hypnosis were published in France circa 1860, where they exerted an important influence on the work of Broca, Charcot, Liébeault and Bernheim, whose teachings in turn influenced the work of Sigmund Freud. Crabtree 465. Garrison-Morton 4993. Fulton & Stanton I.17. Hunter & Macalpine, pp. 906-910. Norman 324.Book Id: 42077