Friday, 16 November 2018

Book of Thaytamen Preview

In a week or two I shall be releasing a small work, translated from the Darmstadt manuscript, namely The Book of Panetary Lamens of Thaytamen, to my Patreon supporters as a way to give back for their kindness. 

It contains the following:
-facsimile of the manuscript
-complete Latin transcript
-English translation
-notes to clarify the translation
-brief chapters discussing the astrological timing, the metals and the materia magica prescribed
-origin and possible history of the tract
-summary tables of the contents
-comparison charts



This is not a work that I will be selling. Just for my patreon supporters. If you wish to support my page via Patreon and get access to this material, this is the place to do it. 

Saturday, 27 October 2018

The Seals of Thaytamen

Having isolated the figures of the seven talismans originating in the work of Thaytamen in my previous article, I`ve compiled 21 tables comparing all possible seals on these pentacles, using them as a resource in order to identify the migration of these figures through texts. 

The seals are given from the newest (Lans.1202) to the oldest (Darmstadt). 

The first seven tables compare the complex seals of the planets found on the face of the talismans, each one enclosed in a convex geometrical figure with an equal number of points associated numerically with the planet. 

The next seven tables show the characters placed on the right of the magical square on the back, presumably the characters of the archangel placed on the left. 

The last seven show the characters placed beneath the square, presumably associated with the planetary spirit placed on the top. 

A very interesting addition I considered worthy of including is the seal found in John Dee`s Tuba Veneris (London, 1580, noted TV in table 5) which is clearly inspired from our texts. 


















































































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Friday, 26 October 2018

Bookshelf: Magister Officiorum (Julio Cesar Ody)


I`ve just received my copy of the much-anticipated Magister Officiorum, brought to us by Julio Cesar Ody and Scarlet Imprint. The book was put out in three editions: 72 copies of the Limited Edition, hand bound in quarter vellum, black cloth boards, edges gilt, ribboned, and presented in a slipcase, 900 copies of the Standard Harback, black cloth stamped with dagger device, textured red endpapers and black dust jacket and the unlimited paperback Bibliothèque Rouge edition.

Although I was not among the fine people who got to the 72 fine bound copies, I was among the lucky ones that got a signed copy from the author himself, for which I am more than grateful. Adding to that the fact that he agreed to a very objective review on my part without the threat of being cursed if I`m too critical, I can only be satisfied and relieved.

Magister Officiorum is not a book on magic. It`s a book of magic.  Without having the pretense of being a dark work that promises you unparalleled techniques and secret keys to the magical realm and the unleashing of the infernal armies, without being flashy and pompous in its presence, the book is a grimoire. A concise manual of Solomonic Magic as it is understood in the traditional, practical sense. 

Despite Julio`s expertise in syncretic initiatory systems such as Makaya and Obeah, he does not fall into the trap of eclecticism that sometimes characterises modern workings of the Solomonic Cycle. Although he is very well aware of the historical connections between the Goetia spirits and the Canaanite religion, he does not overlay the latter upon the former, nor does he try to reverse-engineer the Lemegeton practice in an ATR manner to better suit his fancy. Obeah is Obeah and Solomonic Magic is Solomonic Magic.  Although private practice may evolve in similar fashions in many ways, the Magister Officiorum tells a tale of rigorous traditional practice that is respected thoroughly and then worked to one's needs. 

In reading a modern-day grimoire we do not only get a glimpse in the mind and soul workings of a contemporary practitioner, but we can also trace the model and backbone of other works akin to it. 

Many grimoires, such as the Elements of Pseudo-Abano, The Key of Pseudo-Solomon and the Books of Pseudo-Moses have been transmitted to us with a varying degree of fidelity, but with smaller and often disregarded experiments, minor rites and practices. Without being exterior to them, these rites are often original creations of the author or scribe that worked the system and are included in his Liber Officiorum (book of rites) in order to be rendered effective.  As well as we can witness in the case of Frederick Hockley, Ody`s book chronicles just such examples of minor workings or rites brought about by his experiences in the practical application of the system. At least one example, the Image of Frimost, is strangely reminiscent of the work On Images of Zael (Sahl ibn Bishr) in it`s direction and detail. All well and good if it weren't for the fact that I did not publish this translation anywhere to this date. 

The Sefer Mafteach Shlomo, the Munich Handbook and the Florentine Manual are filled with such experiments that baffle the academics: they seem to be related textually to the grimoire proper and share a paradigm with the rest, but they have no previous sources or textual occurrences. Where do they come from and who authored them?  Magister Officiorum answers this very question and takes us through the mindset of the practitioner much as it functioned 400 or 500 years ago, a truly remarkable exercise in cognitive anthropology.

Minus Points: Apart from minor errors (such as The Munich Handbook being called Colorno 849 instead of CLM 849), the book does not contain errors as I see it. This being said, it`s practice-oriented and the rigorous academic researcher will not be provided with copious footnotes regarding the pages on which the cited information is given in the work mentioned. Also, my profession as a bookbinder begs me to lament one detail: the book as an object by itself is not practically designed, but aesthetically: it opens with difficulty. This is due to three reasons: 1. the paper is thick, and although it has a luscious  and pleasant feel, it tends to remain rigid. 2. The spine is straight and thick, as most hardbacks produced today and cannot afford much flexibility and 3. although the book is sewn in signatures, the hot glue used to fasten it was put on copiously in the thought that it might be more resistant. Any binder knows that the lesser glue we have on a spine the more flexible it will be and the more glue we put on the more resistance it will have to being opened flat. 

Plus Points: although not academically inclined, Ody`s recommended reading list is packed with serious works on the subject he delves into, with critical editions by Joseph Peterson, Stephen Skinner, Daniel Harms, Richard Kieckhefer and Ioannis Marathakis. The writing manner is concise, straightforward, practical and with no modern conceptual additions to the traditional material (unnecessary kabbalistic interpretations, spiritual speculations or guided and/or induced visualisation. The book itself, apart from the issue of opening flat, is beautifully executed, Singer`s illustrations are clear and well drawn, the proportions beautifully chosen and the gilding kept to an elegant minimum. 

All in all, a must-read for any researcher that can gather the strength to admit that magic is not a long-dead discipline to be studied from old books but a tradition that has been practiced without interruption from the very first manuscripts of it`s seminal works to the more recent endeavors of contemporary studious practitioners. 


Scarlet Imprint: Magister Officiorum

Glitch Bottle interview: Stepping into the Circle

Julio`s Blog: Crossing Sun



All authors who send books for reviewing are listed as honorific patrons. If you would like to become a patron of this free blog, check out the Patreon page or donate books. If you read this and do not share, you`ll be damned to the fiery pits of Hell and will be audited by the IRS afterwords. Just kidding, only hell. Thanks. 

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Seven mysterious planetary pentacles

Or a history of transmission of seven talismans through texts.

In the ”Key of Solomon” as published today in numerous editions with a multitude of textual sources we are used to find a number of pentacles and talismans, listed by their planetary affinities.

 Not all these figures were not in the oldest manuscripts of the text, but were later adopted by scribes to either supplement the lack of figures that the text mentions and did not keep from previous sources, or to add to the visual arsenal of the manuscript they were compiling and make it even more ”complete”, as they would consider it. The modern compilations and reworkings (Raphael, De Laurence, Hockley, Papus) were not included in the present study, my main goal being to research their transmission in the manuscripts, the only exception being the Calendarium Magicum


Source 1:
Les Vraies Clavicules du Roi Solomon par Armadel ( Ms. Lansdowne 1202)

The manuscript (1) contains many visual discordances, spelling errors and the drawings are not executed by a very talented hand. Our pentacles  appear once, as a complete series and some appear before them, with explanations. The transcription was checked with Joseph Peterson`s excerpts of the text, the translations are my own. The second series contains three figures, but only the two relevant to our study were isolated. The figures are coded VCA.

 
VCA1: Saturn


 VCA2: Jupiter


 VCA3: Mars


 VCA4: Venus


 VCA5-6: Saturn


 VCA7-8: Jupiter


 VCA9-10: Mars


 VCA11-12: Sun


 VCA13-14: Venus


 VCA15-16: Mercury


 VCA17-18: Luna









Sources 2 and 3
Les Veritables Clavicules de Salomon(Ms. Lansdowne 1203 and BNF Ms.Fr.25314)

I believe one of these very beautiful manuscripts, possibly Lans.1203 (2) to be the source of Lansdowne 1202 presented above. The script is concise and clear, with very few mistakes, and the figures are executed by a very talented artist that took great care to lay down the lines and letters perfectly, which can hardly be said of the scribe of Lans.1202. The explanations, which are more detailed than 1202, were checked against one another (generally BNF lacks some details in Lans.) The figures are supplied from the BNF  manuscript (3), which were clearer, but identical. The figures are coded VCS. 

 VCS1: Saturn
BNF.103, LANS.118




CS2: Jupiter
BNF.105, LANS.123






CS3: Mars
BNF.111, LANS.127



CS4: Sun
BNF. 96, LANS.113




CS5: Venus
BNF. 97, LANS.115



CS6: Mercury
BNF. 99, LANS.117



CS7: Moon
BNF. 127, LANS.142



Source 4
Perpetual Card: Vaticinia Varia
(UPenn Ms. Codex 1196)


This very interesting manuscript, generously offered by the Penn State University Library (4), clearly draws upon the printed Magical Calendar: although it does contain detailed accounts of using the wheels for divinatory purposes, it does not contain any further details on the origin or use of the talismanic figures.  The date might be far younger than the cited 1688, but I have no expert data regarding the age of the paper, watermark or palaeographic evidence. The drawings are neatly (but not perfectly) executed by a talented artist, with a free line that defines forms quite easily. For the sake of clarity, the artist placed the magical squares of the last three talismans on the following page. The figures are coded VV.


VV1-2: Saturn
p.127





VV4-5: Jupiter
p.128




VV5-6: Mars
p.129




VV7-8: Sun
p.130




VV9-10: Venus
p.131

VV11: Square of Venus
p.132



VV12-13: Mercury 
p.133

VV14: Square of Mercury
p.134







VV15-16: Luna
p.135



VV17: Luna
p.136







Source 5
Calendarium Magicum 

Popularised online by Joseph Peterson (5) with a few excerpts after being published in full by Adam McLean (6) with translations and notes, this 17th century engraving contains a wealth of synthesized data from various sources, unfortunately all uncited. I extracted the pentacles from the high definition scan of the copy kept in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France under the mark GED-5082 (7).

CM 1-2: Saturn




CM 3-4: Jupiter



CM 5-6: Mars



CM 7-8: Sun



CM 9-10: Venus




CM 11-12: Mercury



CM 13-14: Moon





Source 6
Calendarium Magicum Manuscript Source
(Harley Ms. 3420)

Dated to 1614, British Library Manuscript Harley 3420 (8) was identified by Carlos Gilly as being the source of the printed engraving  (9). As I do not possess the entire manuscript, in order to check the numbering, I will refer to the pages as they appear in the images themselves. Also, having a low resolution scan of the microfilm proved a bit problematic, but I made every effort to enlarge and clean the figures so as to render the writing legible. As seen below in the images of Saturn, there is a little extra material that did not make it into the engraving (click for enlargement). 


The top of the first talisman is marked with a set of characters not found in the engraving, but found in earlier manuscripts, which can help us identify the sources even closer. Those will be dealt with in a separate study. Below them we find the characters that have made it into the engraving (the ones Agrippa collected as well and proved their geomantical origin) and a comparison between them and the Darmstadt Manuscript can be found on Table 10. The images are coded H. 


H 1-2: Table of Saturn 
f.30r



H 3-4: Table of Jupiter
f.30r



H 5-6: Table of Mars 
f.30r



H 7-8: Table of The Sun 
f.30r



H 9-10-11: Table of Venus
f.30r



H 12-13: Table of Mercury
f.30r






H 14-15: Table of the Moon 
f.30r








Source 7
The Book of Tables of Thaytamen
(Dartmstadt Manuscript)

Manuscript Hs1410 (10), reffered to here as the Darmstadt manuscript (11), contains the only version I know of this text, on fols 9v-14v. It is preceded by a work on planetary rings by Zoel and followed by a work of Messahala on the same subject. The full title is Liber Thaytamen Philosophi Magni et astronomi nobilissimi de laminis seu Tabulis Planetarum, that is The Book of Thaytamen, Great Philosopher and most-noble astronomer, on the lamens or Tables of the Planets. 
This is not only the first time I have seen this treatise but also the first time I`ve met with this (supposedly Arabic) author. And this could be caused by my profound lack of knowledge in the field of astral magic authors if it weren't for the fact that I haven`t found him in any bibliography or in Frank Klaassen`s list of authors of image magic, astral magic and every other kind of magic (12).  

The only author it resembles would be Thethel (Thethel>Thaythelem>Thaytam), which in turn is a corrupted version of Zahel (Sahl>Zahl>Zahel>Cahel>Cathel>Tethel). This however seems a bit unlikely  since there are other treatises by Zahel in the codex.  

The figures are called ”Tabula”, just like in the Calendarium manuscript and in Agrippa, which can be translated as Table. The circles and lines are in faded black ink and the figures, numbers and writing are in bright red. Due to the lack of consistency of contrast, I will be doing a superior version of these seals in a future post. 

I am currently working on a translation of this work which will be published separately. 



D 1-2: Table of Saturn
fol. 10v



D 3-4: Table of Jupiter
fol.11r



D 5-6: Table of Mars
fol.11v



D 7-8: Table of the Sun
fol.12r



D 9-10: Table of Venus
fol.12v



D 11-12:  Table of Mercury
fol.13v



D 13-14: Table of the Moon
fol.14r





Comparison tables 


Table 1: Names of the Saturn Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
Saturnus
Saturnus
Saturnus
Satvrnvs
Satvrnvs
Saturnus
Saturnus
Caroler
Caroler
Caroser
Carose
Caroser
Caroseriren
Mars
Maraca
Maraca
Managa
Maraca
Maraca
Marac
onosernus
Cesileie
Heseleie
Lesilege
Fesileie
lesileie
Lesileie
yaleye
Kabractam

Kabractan
Kabractan
Kabractan
kbzucharan
Gabriel

-
Gabriel
Gabriel
Captiel



Table 2: Names of the Jupiter Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
Jupiter
Jupiter
-
-
Ivpit
Iupiter
Jupiter
Mirach
Miraoth
Merach
Alirah
Mirach
Morach
Meras
Lamo
Lamo
Lamo
jamo
lamo
Ianic
bergis
Calbat
Calbut
Calbat
Calbat
Calbat
Calbat
-
Caolos
Cados
Caolos
Caolos
Caolos
Cados
-

Alma Chiamoch
Almadram-
oth
Almadij
Moch.
Asmadi
amoch
Almachia-moch
Alnahy-niach
-
Arosbonachar

Arolbo-nachar
Arolbo-
nachar
Azolbo-
nachar
Szobara-
Btan?
Fatqniel

Satgviel
Satguiel
Angelus
Satquiel
Satquiel



Table 3: Names of the Mars Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
-
Nate
Nare
Nate
nate
Madi
-
Mars
Mars
Mars
Mars
Mars
-
Reicho
Reihe
Raihe
Reihe
He
-
Ma
Ma
Ma
Ma
Mare
Yriochsos
Yvigo
Yriocas
Yriocas
yrius
Yrreys
Coves

Aries
Aries
Aries
Aries
-
Malchidael
Malchidael
Malchi-dael
Malchi-dael
Malchi-dael
Malchi-dael
-
Bareschas
Bareschas
Barechas
Bareshas
Bareschas
Bareschas
Barros-
carkas
Samael
Samael
Samael
Samael
Samael
Angelus
Samael
Samahel




Table 4: Names of the Sun Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
Vau
Vau
Vau
Vau
Vau
Anima
Ferus
Febus
Phoebus
Febus
Febus
Febus
Nantho
Xamba
Fanha
Xanho
Xanha?
Xancha
Elou?
Eloha
Eloha
Eloha
Eloha
-
Sol
Sol
Sol
Sol
Sol
Sol
Abihai
-
Gabi Lia
Abiha
Abiba?
-
Staytabortas

Staitabor-tos
Staytabor-
tos
Geyrabo-rius?
Staytabo-gtis
Szaroth-
berthos
Raphael

Raphael
Raphael

Raphael


Table 5: Names of the Venus Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
Mago
Imago
Mago
Mago
Mago
Mago
Mago
-
Remis
Remis
Remis?
Remus?
Renus
Renus
Venus
Venus
Venus
Sehva
Sehia
Setiiu
Schya
Schya
Schya
hehiu ?
habya ?
Tarson?
Farton
Sariof
Forsons
farsous
farsour
forforus
forforas
Tarso
Farto

Farso
farso
farsa
-
Asmodel
Amoday
Asmodet
At-model
Asmodel
Asmodel
-
Zamiel
Zamiel
Zame
Zamiel
Zamiel
Zamiel
-
Messy-
Ioxondich

Melli Lo-
xonaich
Melly
loxondich
Melly-
loxondich
Enielli-
kendich
Anael

Anael
Anael
Angelus
Anael
Anael


Table 6: Names of the Mercury Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
Le-He-rah
Rah-He-Le
le-he-rah
Le-he-rah
Le-he-rah ?
-
a-na-po-nua
A-Na-Po-Na
a-na-po-na
a-na-po-na
A-na-bo-na
-
ni-hop
Nj-Toph
nr-toph
Ni-toph
Ni-toph
-
de-e-a
Le-E-A
Le-e-a
Le-e-a
Le-e-a ?
-
Son-Mas
Mas-Son
Son-Mas
Son-Y-Mas
Y-Son-Y-Mas
-
Horasten-
dem

Horasten-
dem
Horasten-
dem
Horasten-
dem
Harastan-
ten
Hetascei-
don
Michael

-
Michael
Angelus
Michael
Michael


Table 7: Names of the Moon Pentacles
VCA
VCS
VV
CM
H
D
THET
RAGR
AMMA
THON
THEX
YAGR
AMYA
HOAV
TETR
AGRA
MMAT
ON
A ET Ω O O
Thet
Ragr
Amma
Thon
A Ω T
Thet
Ragr
Amma
Thon
A Ω T
-
Barmot-
Tiba

Barmotiba
Barmottiba
Barmottiba
-
Gabriel

-
Gabriel
Angelus
Gabriel
Gabriel


Table 8

Similarities between the Harley manuscript seals (which do appear in the Magical calendar) and the Darmstadt manuscript, in a treatise by Zoel that accompanies the treatise by Thaytamen.

Bibliography:

(1) 
British Library Lansdowne Manuscript 1202, digital copy provided by Jérémie Segouin.

(2) 
British Library Lansdowne Manuscript 1203, digital copy provided by Jérémie Segouin. Printed as Les Veritables Clavicules de Salomon, editions du Monolith, Paris, 2018.

(3)

(4)
Perpetual Card, Vaticinia Varia, London, 1688. 

(5)
Peterson, Joseph H.:  The Magical Calendar (excerpts), online edition at http://esotericarchives.com/mc/index.html


(6)

McLean, Adam: The Magical Calendar: A Synthesis of Magical Symbolism from the Seventeenth-Century Renaissance of Medieval Occultism (Magnum Opus Hermetic Sourcewo) (English and Latin Edition), 2008.


(7)

Grosschedeh ab Aicha, Johan Baltista (sic): Calendarium naturale magicum perpetuum, online copy at   

https://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b53006672b/f1.item.zoom

(8)
I am greatly indebted to Joseph Peterson for sending me the required microfilm scan images of this manuscript, without which this study would have been far less informed.

(9)
Gilly, Carlos: The rediscovery of the original of Großchedel's Calendarium Naturale Magicum Perpetuum, in Carlos Gilly, Cis van Heertum (ed.) Magia, Alchimia, Scienza Dal '400 al '700. L'influsso di Ermete Trismegisto Centro Di: 2 vols. Firence, 2002, vol. 1 pp. 310-317 as cited on http://esotericarchives.com/mc/index.html


(10)
http://tudigit.ulb.tu-darmstadt.de/show/Hs-1410

(11)
http://studies-vartejaru.blogspot.com/2018/10/the-darmstadt-magic-manuscript.html

(12)
http://homepage.usask.ca/~frk302/MSS/authors.htm




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