St. Leon A Tale of the Sixteenth Century
A Gothic novel by William Godwin (1756–1836), first published
in 1799. It may have been suggested by stories of the
mysterious Comte de Saint Germain and the curious book HerStiles,
Joseph D. Encyclopedia of Occultism & Parapsychology • 5th Ed.
mippus Redivivus; or The Sage’s Triumph Over Old Age and the
Grave by J. H. Cohausen (1744).
Godwin used this novel to propagate some of the ideas expressed
in his work An Enquiry Concerning Political Justice and its
Influence on General Virtue and Happiness (2 vols., 1793). St. Leon
sought to show that ‘‘boundless wealth, freedom from disease,
weakness and death are as nothing in the scale against domestic
affection and the charities of private life.’’ (See also Signor
Gualdi; occult English fiction; St. Irvyne; or the Rosicrucian)