Thursday, April 09, 2009

Top ten books of magic spells

Owen Davies is Reader in Social History at the University of Hertfordshire. He has written extensively on the history of popular magic, witchcraft, and ghosts. His new book is Grimoires: A History of Magic Books.

He named his top ten grimoires for the Guardian.

One title on the list:
The Clavicule of Solomon

This is the granddaddy of grimoires. Mystical books purporting to be written by King Solomon were already circulating in the eastern Mediterranean during the first few centuries AD. By the 15th century hundreds of copies were in the hands of Western scientists and clergymen. While some denounced these Solomonic texts as heretical, many clergymen secretly pored over them. Some had lofty ambitions to obtain wisdom from the "wisest of the wise", while others sought to enrich themselves by discovering treasures and vanquishing the spirits that guarded them.
Read about another book on Davies' list.

--Marshal Zeringue