South East London Folklore Society: John Dee 101


It’s been a while since my last blog. I got poorly & had to take some time off, but I’m on the mend now & making fun online stuff. Music Folklore & Magic to interest & entertain.

I have run a monthly pub meeting called The South East London Folklore Society for about 7 years, but don’t have a pub to meet in the moment so it’s here now! The presentation below is a bunch of YouTube slideshows about the Elizabethan magician & astonishing person, John Dee. These slideshows are quite involved: Dee’s biography is complicated & confusing. That’s part of the fun.

So without further ado

Welcome to the first virtual South East London Folklore Society.

Below you will find a series of links to slideshows about Doctor Dee. Enjoy!

The Early Years. The first in a series of slideshows introducing John Dee, one of the more astonishing figures of Elizabethan society. Part 1 documents his early life in England & in Europe.

Surviving Mary & Pioneering Natural Magic. In this second slideshow Dee returns from Europe to join King Edward’s Court, faces ruin & possible death under Queen Mary but ends up thriving & publishing a book on natural magic.

In & Around Elizabeth’s Court In this third slideshow Dee is welcomed into the Elizabethan court, learns the secrets of Cabala, poisons himself & more

Dee & Kelley. This fourth slideshow covers the fateful meeting between the natural magician, Dee, & the crystal gazer, Kelley. Kelley says he can talk to angels in crystals & Dee believes him. Kelley is chaotic & leaves a trail of confusion wherever he goes. Dee is most excited to have the chance to transcribe the true language of God & is willing to overlook the possibility that Kelley may not be on the level.

An Adventure. In this final slideshow, Dee & Kelley end up in the court of the Holy Roman Emperor. Kelley ends up becoming a master alchemist & persuading Dee to do something he really ought not to do. Dee’s star wanes but his legacy endures.

A couple of years ago, me and Vanessa did a storytelling and music presentation about Dr Dee. We thought you might enjoy that too so this is a link to a rehearsal video of that story which was based on our research. If you liked it, let us know!

I sincerely hope you enjoy the presentations. It was a lot of fun putting them together & I look forward to being able to get more monthly presentations for you & for it not to be such a learning curve! Email me if you want to be on the mailing list.

If you want to give some money you can pay me over PayPal. If finances or tight or you didn’t enjoy the presentations then don’t feel any obligation to pay.


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