Techniques of Solomonic Magic

Techniques of Solomonic Magic

by Stephen Skinner


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The most detailed analysis of the techniques of Solomonic magic from the seventh to the nineteenth century ever published. This volume explores the methods of Solomonic magic in Alexandria, tracing how the tradition passed through Byzantium (the Hygromanteia ) to the Latin Clavicula Salomonis and its English incarnation as the Key of Solomon .

Discover specific magical techniques such as the invocation of the gods, the binding of demons, the use of the four demon Kings, and the construction of the circle and lamen. The use of amulets, talismans, and phylacteries is outlined along with their methods of construction. Also included are explanations of the structures and steps of Solomonic evocation, the facing directions, practical considerations, the use of thwarting angels, achieving invisibility, sacrifice, love magic, treasure finding and the binding, imprisoning, and licensing of spirits.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780738748061
Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide, LTD.
Publication date: 07/08/2015
Pages: 378
Sales rank: 994,845
Product dimensions: 6.90(w) x 9.90(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Stephen Skinner began his career as a Geography lecturer and magazine publisher, but his long term interests have always been Western magic and feng shui.

During the 1970s he was the driving force behind Askin Publishers, producing a number of classic magical works by Cornelius Agrippa, Paracelsus, Austin Osman Spare, Aleister Crowley, and others. During the 1970s he co-wrote many books with Francis King, including the still popularTechniques of High Magic . Also with Francis King he wroteNostradamus. His interest in prophecy stimulated by this book, he went on to write the best sellingMillennium Prophecies.

Stephen is credited with bringing the art of Feng Shui to the West, and in 1976 he wrote theLiving Earth Manual of Feng Shui , which was the first English book on feng shui in the 20th century.

Stephen has written more than 35 books, which have been published worldwide in 28 different languages. These books have had introductions by such diverse people as Colin Wilson, HRH Charles Prince of Wales, and Jimmy Choo, shoe designer to the stars.

Stephen lives in Singapore. Stephen is the first Westerner to be awarded the title of Grand Master of Feng Shui by the International Feng Shui Association.

Read an Excerpt

An analysis of the methods of Solomonic magic from the 7th to the 19th century as found in the Hygromanteia and Key of Solomon . This volume is about the methods of magic used in 7th century Egyptian Alexandria and how they have been passed via the Greek grimoires of Byzantium (the Hygromanteia ), to the manuscripts of the Latin Clavicula Salomonis and its English incarnation as the Key of Solomon. Jewish techniques like the use of pentacles, oil and water skrying were added along the way, but Solomonic magic (despite its name) remained basically a classical Greek form of magic. Amazingly, this transmission has involved very few changes: the ‘technology’ of magic has remained firmly intact. The emphasis is upon specific magical techniques such as the invocation of the gods, the binding of demons, the use of the four demon Kings, the construction of a circle and lamen (for protection of the magician). The requirements of purity, sexual abstinence, and fasting have changed little in the last 2000 years. The concrete reasons for that are explained. The difference between amulets, talismans and phylacteries or lamens is outlined along with their methods of construction. Examples of magical circles have been taken from many sources and their construction and development traced out. Practical considerations such as choice of incense, the timing of the cutting of the wand, utilisation of rings and statues, use of the Table of Evocation, or the acquisition of a familiar spirit are explained.

The structure of a Solomonic evocation puts into perspective the reasons for each step, the use of thwarting angels, achieving invisibility, sacrifice, love magic, treasure finding, and the binding, imprisoning and licensing of spirits. The facing directions and timing of evocations have always been crucial, and these too have remained consistent. By examining the way these same methods were used again and again in the various periods, minor omissions in magical practice can be observed and repaired.

Techniques of Solomonic Magic is thus a follow on from Techniques of Graeco-Egyptian Magic. This volume investigates precise methods used by magicians from the magicians’ own handbooks rather than from the opinions of theologians, historians, anthropologists or legislators. The emphasis is on what magicians did and why.

Tools used by magicians in 7th century Alexandria, 15th century Constantinople and 19th century London are very much the same. Detailed comparisons are made chapter by chapter with 70 illustrations of magical equipment like the wand, the sword, wax and clay images and magical gems, drawn from a wide range of manuscripts and reproduced with detailed analysis. Literally hundreds of manuscripts in libraries across Europe have been read and checked to ensure this is the most detailed analysis of Solomonic magic, from the inside, ever penned.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 6

Contents 7

List of Figures 9

List of Tables 11

Abbreviations 12

1 Introduction 15

1.1 Scope of the Book 15

1.2 The Relationship between Magic and Religion 28

2 Historical Background 32

3 Sources of the Solomonic Magical Tradition 35

3.1 Graeco-Egyptian Magic 35

3.2 The Input of Jewish Magic to the Clavicula Salomonis 36

The Case against the Hebrew Roots of the Clavicula Salomonis 41

The Case for the Hebrew Roots of the Clavicula Salomonis 46

3.3 Byzantine Solomonic Magical Texts 49

Manuscripts of the Hygromanteia 58

Stephanos of Alexandria 66

Analysis of the Contents of the Hygromanteia 72

3.4 The Transmission of Byzantine Greek texts to the Latin West 80

3.5 The Clavicula Salomonis 92

4 Transmission of Magical Techniques and Instruments from the Hygromanteia to the Clavicula Salomonis 99

5 Similarity of Method in the Hygromanteia and the Clavicula Salomonis 107

5.1 The Hierarchy of Spiritual Creatures 112

5.1.1 The Hierarchies of Spirits, Angels and Daimones 112

5.1.2 The Gods 117

5.1.3 The Hierarchy of Angels 117

5.1.4 The Hierarchy of Demons 120

5.2 Preliminary Procedures and Preparation 126

5.2.1 Location for the Operation 126

5.2.2 Space - Orientation and the Four Demon Kings 127

5.2.3 Timing 141

5.2.4 Purity and Sexual Abstinence 150

5.2.5 Fasting and Food Prohibitions 151

5.3 Protection for the Magician 152

5.3.1 Circle of Protection 152

5.3.2 Triangle of Art and Brass Vessel 177

5.3.3 Phylactery, Lamen or Breastplate 185

5.4 Written Words 189

5.4.1 Amulets 189

5.4.2 Talismans and Pentacles 189

5.5 Spoken Words 208

5.5.1 Conjuration of Angels 208

5.5.2 Evocation of Demons and Spirits 210

5.5.3 Nomina Magica 212

5.5.4 Historiola and Commemoration 214

5.5.5 License to Depart 214

6 Transmission of Equipment from Hygromanteia to Claviaila Salomonis 216

6.1 Table of Evocation 217

6.2 Wand 223

6.3 Sword 223

6.4 Black-handled Knife 227

6.5 Virgin Papyrus or Parchment 231

6.6 Pen, Quill, or Reed 233

6.7 Ink 234

6.8 Garments 236

6.9 The Symbola of the Gods 238

6.10 Magical Statues or Stoichcia 239

6.11 Magical Rings and Gemstones 239

6.12 Wax and Clay Images 242

6.13 Incenses 244

6.14 Herbs 249

7 Major Magical Techniques 253

7.1 Obtaining a Paredros 253

7.2 Love Spells 254

7.3 Invisibility 255

7.4 Sacrifice 256

7.5 Necromancy 258

7.6 Treasure Finding 259

7.7 Imprisonment of Spirits in a Bottle 262

8 The 'manteiai' or Evocationary Skrying Methods 265

8.1 Lekanomanteia - Evocationary Bowl Skrying 270

8.2 Hygromanteia - Evocationary Water Skrying 273

9 Conclusions 276

Glossary 282

Appendix 1 A Short Outline of Astral Magic 288

Appendix 2 Manuscripts of the Hygromanteia 294

Appendix 3 Manuscripts of the Clavicula Salomonis 296

Appendix 4 Text-Groups of the Clavicula Salomonis 301

Appendix 5 Structure of the Text-Groups of the Clavicula Salomonis 335

Appendix 6 The Classic Solomonic Method 337

Bibliography 344

Index 375

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