Books: Atheism to Theosophy*

THE PASSIONATE PILGRIM—Gertrude Marvin Williams—Coward-McCann ($3.50).

Annie Wood Besant (rhymes with either incessant or pleasant) is an old woman (83) popularly associated with occult ritual and mystic robes. She is still president of the Theosophical Society, but perhaps you didn't realize she was once a parson's wife, an atheist, a Socialist, a beautiful spellbinder.

Said her friend, the late Journalist William Thomas Stead: "She could not be the bride of Heaven, and therefore became the bride of Mr. Frank Besant. He was hardly an adequate substitute." But Annie Besant...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!