Mead writings

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G. R. S. Mead was a Theosophist and scholar responsible for a large body of written works. In 1898 he was awarded the Subba Row Medal for his contributions to Theosophical literature.

“Prolific” barely begins to describe Mr. Mead. The Union Index of Theosophical Periodicals[1] database of articles by and about G. R. S. Mead runs to 13 pages, single spaced. Of nearly 400 entries, 300 are articles written or edited by Mr. Mead; the remaining 98 or so are about him. Only a few entries are duplicates, such as his Notes on Nirvana, which appeared in both French and English journals in 1893. When he wrote a series of articles on one topic, they were often later incorporated into one of his many books.

This database contains, among other things:

  • 18 articles in Le Lotus Bleu (the Blue Lotus), a French theosophical journal begun in 1889 and apparently still being published. From 1898 until 1923 it was known as Le Lotus Bleu / La Revue Theosophique; it then returned to its original name, which seems to be still in use today.[2] Mead’s contributions from 1890 through 1905 included:
    • a three-part Notes on Nirvana, 1893; and
    • a ten-part series on Appolonius of Tyana (1904)
  • 90 articles in Lucifer, from 1888 to 1897, including:
    • a five-part series entitled Pistis-Sophia, from April through August 1890;
    • a seven-part series on Simon Magus in 1892;
    • a three-part Notes on Nirvana, 1893;
    • a three-part The World Soul, 1892;
    • a ten-part Orpheus, 1895–1896;
    • a seven-part Lives of the Later Platonists, 1896; and
    • a nine-part Gnostics of the First Two Centuries, 1897
  • 133 articles in the Theosophical Review from 1897 through 1909, on Gnosticism, esoteric Christianity, Hermetic literature, the Jewish Talmud, Asclepius (the Greek god of medicine), and many other topics.

He contributed to The Theosophist during the 1890s and early 1900s, and also contributed to Occult Review, The Path, The Quest — of which he was the publisher for 21 years — and other periodicals. Occasionally he reviewed the work of other writers, but he seems to have been the reviewee far more often than he was the reviewer.

A few of Mr. Mead’s best-known books are Pistis Sophia, Thrice-Greatest Hermes, Fragments of a Faith Forgotten, Apollonius of Tyana, Simon Magus, Gnostic John the Baptizer, and Did Jesus Live 100 BC? These and many more of Mead’s works are available online, in electronic format and also in hard copy. Explore the links below to discover the extent of his writings.

NOTE: SEE Pistis Sophia in Theosophy World
NOTE: SEE The G. R. S. Mead Collection of the Gnostic Society Library for more links
NOTE: SEE Open Books 
NOTE: SEE for book covers 
NOTE: SEE for more digital editions
NOTE: SEE Online Books page for more digital editions

Periodicals and editorial work

Much of Mead's work involved the Theosophical magazines and journals of his day. The Union Index of Theosophical Periodicals lists

Another 66 articles were about him or his books.


Lucifer - see

The Theosophical Review

The Theosophical Review - see

The Quest

The Quest - see

Other periodicals

Mead also contributed heavily to The Vahan - see

Books and pamphlets

Always a prolific writer, Mead produced books and pamphlets on many subjects.


Gnostic Christianity

  • The Gnostic John the Baptiser.
  • Did Jesus Live 100 B. C. ?.
  • Fragments of a Faith Forgotten. Available at Internet Archive and Blavatsky Archives.
  • Pistis Sophia, a Gnostic Gospel.
  • The Hymn of Jesus.
  • The Gnostic Crucifixion. London & Benares: The Theosophical Publishing Society, 1907.
  • The World Mystery, Contents: The World Soul, The Vestures of the Soul, The Web of Destiny, Self-Reliance.


  • Thrice-Greatest Hermes.
  • Some Mystical Adventures. London: John M.Watkins, 1910. Available at NPB.Narod.Ru.
  • The Hymns of Hermes.


  • Plotinus. (Theosophy of the Greeks)
  • Orpheus. Written as the Theosophy of the Greeks, or an introduction to Greek theology and mythology.

Collected works

  • Quests Old and New. Essays and articles, mostly from The Quest