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MASONIC BIOGRAPHIES
FAMOUS FREEMASONS
Oracles
[Ralph P. Lester]
Titlepage.
The "R.P. Lester" whose name is attached to Oracles : The biography of an art1 has been identified by the British Library as Ralph P. Lester who had compiled Look to the East!2 thirty years earlier. Internal evidence though, and the complete lack of any other evidence of the existence of "R.P. Lester", suggests that this was yet another of Crowley's many pseudonyms.
Although Lester is credited on the titlepage with providing explanatory notes, the actual notes are limited to seven short entries: three biographical, two bibliographical and two noting metrical peculiarities.
Aleister Crowley had formed the Society for the Propagation of Religious Truth (SPRT), a parody of the Church of England's Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, sometime after May 1904. Lester's participation suggests that he may have been associated with the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and may have been in Scotland at the time.
Richard Kaczynski reports that 500 copies of Oracles was printed, although the catalogue bound into the edition claims a special limited edition of 100 copies.3

1.See: Oracles. The biography of an art : unpublished fragments of the work of Aleister Crowley With explanatory notes by R. P. Lester and Aleister Crowley. Boleskine,Foyers, Inverness : Society for the Propagation of Religious Truth , 1905. 175pp. plus Excerpt A - from the catalogue 14pp., A list of the works of Mr. Aleister Crowley, order form.
2.Look to the East!, Lester, Ralph P. ed. New York : Dick & Fitzgerald Publishers, 1876. 201pp.
3.Perdurabo, Revised and Expanded: The Life of Aleister Crowley Richard Kaczynski. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 2010. p. 131.

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