An Excellent Booke of the Arte of Magicke (paperback)

$59.95

The magical works of Humphrey Gilbert & John Davis from the British Library additional manuscript 36674. Transcribed, edited and introduced by Phil Legard with supplementary essays by Alexander Cummins.

The magical experiments conducted by Elizabethan explorer, soldier and courtier Humphrey Gilbert, along with his scryer John Davis, during the spring of 1567 are notable for their forceful methods and stripped down Protestant ritual. The spirits are called into a ‘crystal stone’ by way of a large number of conjurations, charges, constraints, curses and bonds. The work includes the practical conjuration of Bleth, Aosal, Assassel (Azazel) and the four demon kings of the winds, namely Oriens, Amaimon, Paimon and Aegyn. It is evidently based on an older text or texts, adapted to the Protestant outlook of the period, and has also been supplemented with revelations and guidance received first-hand by Gilbert and Davis over the course of its composition. As such, the texts are a rare example of the poiesis, or coming-together, of a ritual magic book. The texts attest to the continuity of medieval ritual magic into the early modern period.

In the second part of the book, Contexts, Dr Alexander Cummins provides a trilogy of essays. He first surveys early modern necromancy, its tools and techniques in their historical setting. He then discusses scrying techniques in depth, with reference to Artephius, Dee and Kelley, Aubrey, Lilly, Forman et al. He concludes with a discussion of tutelary shades, and the learning of magic from dead magicians, whether Solomon, Adam, Cornelius Agrippa or Roger Bacon. Thus armed, the appropriately black-clad reader can engage with the Excellent Booke as a practical grimoire of the necromantic art.

Phil Legard draws the book to a close with an essay on the phenomenology of the necromantic workings of Gilbert and Davis which provides an open door for both practitioners and academics through which to pursue the performative and affective practice of magic.

Publisher: Scarlet Imprint

1 in stock

Description

The magical works of Humphrey Gilbert & John Davis from the British Library additional manuscript 36674. Transcribed, edited and introduced by Phil Legard with supplementary essays by Alexander Cummins.

The magical experiments conducted by Elizabethan explorer, soldier and courtier Humphrey Gilbert, along with his scryer John Davis, during the spring of 1567 are notable for their forceful methods and stripped down Protestant ritual. The spirits are called into a ‘crystal stone’ by way of a large number of conjurations, charges, constraints, curses and bonds. The work includes the practical conjuration of Bleth, Aosal, Assassel (Azazel) and the four demon kings of the winds, namely Oriens, Amaimon, Paimon and Aegyn. It is evidently based on an older text or texts, adapted to the Protestant outlook of the period, and has also been supplemented with revelations and guidance received first-hand by Gilbert and Davis over the course of its composition. As such, the texts are a rare example of the poiesis, or coming-together, of a ritual magic book. The texts attest to the continuity of medieval ritual magic into the early modern period.

In the second part of the book, Contexts, Dr Alexander Cummins provides a trilogy of essays. He first surveys early modern necromancy, its tools and techniques in their historical setting. He then discusses scrying techniques in depth, with reference to Artephius, Dee and Kelley, Aubrey, Lilly, Forman et al. He concludes with a discussion of tutelary shades, and the learning of magic from dead magicians, whether Solomon, Adam, Cornelius Agrippa or Roger Bacon. Thus armed, the appropriately black-clad reader can engage with the Excellent Booke as a practical grimoire of the necromantic art.

Phil Legard draws the book to a close with an essay on the phenomenology of the necromantic workings of Gilbert and Davis which provides an open door for both practitioners and academics through which to pursue the performative and affective practice of magic.

Publisher: Scarlet Imprint

Additional information

Weight 2.8 lbs
Dimensions 10 × 7 × 1.5 in

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