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Published by Robert Ri'chard

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Robert Ri'chard on Sep 02, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Nathaniel J. Harris 
Soror Tekla 484, 3*, TOPh
The importance of the classical grimoire, and the more personal books of spells attributed to various witches and cunning folk, has been greatly
undervalued in more recent studies of the craft. Nevertheless, theknowledge of the black arts and the important place of the grimoire has been well documented since before the middle ages and we have a greatstorehouse of records at our disposal, both from the sorcerer’s themselvesand those who prosecuted them.This is not limited to East Anglia or even England. Consider theconfession of Jubertus of Bavaria, tried in 1437. Apart from the more or less typical flights to nocturnal assemblies and the killing of infants theaforesaid Jobertus said and confessed, under ‘freely given oath’..“.. that for ten years and more he served a certain powerfulman in Bavaria who was called Johannes Cunalis, who is a priest and
in a city called Munich.. Likewise hesaid and confessed that this Johannes Cunalis had in his possession a
librum de nigromancia,
and that when he whospoke opened this book at once there appeared to him threeDemons, one named Luxuriosus, another Superbus, and athird Avarus, all of them Devils…Likewise, he said and confessed that he had proposed to blind Johanneta, the widow of Johannes Paganus of the present place, because she displeased him. With two keyshe had traced her image, in a manner and form which heexplained in the examination; he did this on a Sunday,depicting her image beneath the names of Devils, usingimplements, materials and techniques described in theexamination…Likewise, he said and confessed that poisons were made by the aid of Devils, by which men could be killed, throughtheir working or by the aid of Demons… and taken from a basilisk, toad, serpent, spider or scorpion…… and that on the feast of Saint John the Baptist hegathered certain herbs for medicine, as specified in the proceedings, and on bended knee he first adored them, thenextracting them in the name of his Devils, and in despite of almighty God, the creator of all…”In these terms the classical grimoire may be seen as presenting acomprehensive and generally consistent pantheon of magical belief;masks beneath which the service of the Old Ones has been hidden. Sincethe Christian Church has demonised the deity of the witches andmagicians, so it is only natural that the witches’ response should be thedeification of the Church’s demons. The result is an organic syncretism

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