Early on in reading The Beautiful and Damned, I came across the term Bilphist.
"Her name's Gloria. Shes from home-Kansas City. Her mother is a practising Bilphist, and her father's quite dull but a perfect gentleman."
And being the conscientious reader that I am, when I come across a word or phrase I am unfamiliar with, I head over to my handy-dandy computer and Google it.
Surprisingly, there is not much on Bilphism, or maybe not surprising considering Fitzgerald made it up. I am not sure I know why he made it up yet, maybe it becomes clearer as I read on. Below is what I unearthed. Now I should make note, I did not spend hours and hours doing research. Nope, just a few minutes, maybe 10 at most. If I find out more I will add that.
Bilphism (noun) source : The name used and coined by F. Scott Fitzgerald in his 1922 novel The Beautiful and the Damned, referring to a religious belief concerned with the reincarnation of the human soul.
" 'Oh, yes, but you see Bilphism isn’t a religion. It’s the science of all religions.' " —F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Beautiful and Damned, 1922
"Shakespeare was a Bilphist," she assured him through a fixed smile.
"Oh, yes! He was a Bilphist. It's been proved."
At this Dick would look a bit blank.
"If you've read 'Hamlet' you can't help but see."
"Well, he--he lived in a more credulous age--a more religious age."
But she demanded the whole loaf:
"Oh, yes, but you see Bilphism isn't a religion. It's the science of all religions." She smiled defiantly at him. This was the _bon mot_ of herTaken from text of The Beautiful and Damned