Do you know of any books on this?
The best so far published in the English language is Barruel's Memoirs Illustrating the History of Jacobinism
. Barruel translated and excerpted large sections of the Original Writings which the Bavarian Elector had published. The basic timeline goes like this:
On October 11 police search Xavier Zwack's residence in Landshut. A number of books and over two hundred letters, between Weishaupt and the Areopagites, were confiscated. The documents were published by the Bavarian government under the title Einige Originalschriften des Illuminaten Ordens. [VS, TM]
The evidence discovered at Zwack's residence was considerable: besides the secret communications between the Illuminati Adepts, the authorities found tables containing the Order's symbols and the Persian calendar; membership rosters, statutes, instructions for recruiters, ceremonies of initiation and imprints of the Order's insignia; a eulogy of atheism and a copy of a manuscript entitled Better Than Horus; a proposal for a branch of Illuminism for woman; 22 several hundred impressions of Government seals (with a list of their owners, princes, nobles, clergymen, merchants, etc.), for the purposes of counterfeiting; instructions for the making of the poison Aqua Toffana, poisonous gas and secret ink; "an infernal machine" for the safeguarding of secret papers - apparently a strong box that would blow up, destroying its contents; and receipts for procuring abortion and a formula for making a tea to induce the procedure. [VS, JR, MA: 51, NW: 228, AB: 692-93]
In the space of a few months, in 1786 - in order to save face - Weishaupt pens 9 different apologetic pamphlets, most notably: Apologie der Illuminaten, Frankfort and Leipzig, 1786, and Vollständige Geschichte der Verfolgung der Illuminaten in Bayern, Frankfort and Leipzig, 1786. [VS]
As a result of further police searches of Baron Bassus' castle at Sondersdorf, the Bavarian government published more secret documents of the Order: Nachtrag von weiteren Originalschriften ... [VS]
August 16. The third and final edict against the Order is put into effect by the Duke of Bavaria. The former edicts were reemphasized "and in addition, to give maximum force to the sovereign's will, criminal process, without distinction of person, dignity, state, or quality, was ordered against any Illuminatus who should be discovered continuing the work of recruiting. Any so charged and found guilty were to be deprived of their lives by the sword; while those thus recruited were to have their goods confiscated and themselves to be condemned to perpetual banishment from the territories of the duke. Under the same penalties of confiscation and banishment, the members of the order, no matter under what name or circumstances, regular or irregular, they should gather, were forbidden to assemble as lodges." [VS]
From: Illuminati Conspiracy Part One: A Precise Exegesis on the Available Evidence
You can still get copies of the Original Writings published in German on the antiquarian book market. But they are still rare and will run in the high hundreds to over a thousand dollars per volume. They still exist in select libraries such as the British Museum and in certain places in Germany. Look for these titles as primary source material:
Einige Originalschriften des Illuminaten Ordens
, Munich, 1787.
Nachtrag von weiteren Originalschriften
, Munich, 1787
Der ächte Illuminat, oder die whren, unverbesserten Rituale der Illuminaten
, Edessa (Frankfort-on-the-Main), 1788
Cosandey, Renner, and Grünberger, Drei merkwürdige Aussagen die innere Einrichtung des Illuminatenordens
, Munich, 1786
Same (with Utzschneider), Grosse Absichten des Ordens der Illuminaten mit Nachtrag
, I, II, III, Munich, 1786.
Der neuesten Arbeiten des Sparticus und Philo
, Munich, 1793.
Illuminatus Dirigens, oder Schottischer Ritter. Ein Pendant
, etc., Munich, 1794.
I had a chance to buy my own copy of Einige Originalschriften ...
not too long ago but declined as it cost too much and would of cost even more for a professional translator. Anyway, I'm writing a book on the real aims of the Order (to be published in 2006) - no speculation, just the facts. I have some good primary source material I found in a dissertation by a German professor and some other stuff too, pictures and representations of real Illuminati seals. I will concentrate mostly on bios for 300+ members (with illustrations, and likenesses of most of them). This has never been done before. The membership mainly comes from another German professor who uncovered a large list of members (from 1782) in the 1970s so it is well overdue to tackle the life of each individual. While investigating these members I have uncovered many things not known before. You can get a sense of the seeds of discovery in the article I wrote, and linked to above.