Ancient Grimoires - The 6th And 7th Book Of Moses (2.9 MB)
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Besides the biblical five books of Moses (Pentateuch), there are other writings ascribed to Moses (pseudepigraphically no doubt). The so-called Sixth and Seventh books of Moses in particular consists of a collection of texts which purport to explain the magic whereby Moses won the biblical magic contest with the Egyptian priest-magicians, parted the Red Sea, and other miraculous feats. Many manuscripts and printed pamphlet versions had circulated in Germany, when Johann Scheible, undertook to collect the major variants. Sche... More >>>
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Besides the biblical five books of Moses (Pentateuch), there are other writings ascribed to Moses (pseudepigraphically no doubt). The so-called Sixth and Seventh books of Moses in particular consists of a collection of texts which purport to explain the magic whereby Moses won the biblical magic contest with the Egyptian priest-magicians, parted the Red Sea, and other miraculous feats. Many manuscripts and printed pamphlet versions had circulated in Germany, when Johann Scheible, undertook to collect the major variants. Scheible, an antiquarian from Stuttgart, published the first edition in German in 1849 as volume 6 of his Bibliothek der Zauber-Geheimniss- und Offenbarungs-Bucher, etc. Subsequent revised and expanded editions were supplemented with excerpts from writings on Jewish folklore and esoterica.
An English translation first appeared in New York in 1880, and has been reprinted more than a few times without -- as far as I can tell -- ever being re-edited. The editors of the many English editions seem to have lacked Scheible's industriousness, but have instead been content with propogating any and all errors intact. All the English editions thus far have consequently been deficient in many ways, with poorly executed drawings and Hebrew lettering, drawings printed upside down, mistakes in transcription and translation, passages censured and other substantial omissions. All in all, English speaking readers have had an especially difficult challenge trying to make sense of this book.
In making this corrected edition I have drawn on the original sources, starting with Scheible's own revised and expanded eighth edition. Additionally I have consulted the original sources drawn on by Scheible and his sources, namely the Hebrew Bible, Agrippa' De Occulta Philosophia (1533), Sepher Raziel, de Abano's Heptameron, Arbatel Of Magick (1575), the Babylonian Talmud, and other cited authors.
This book has become quite influential in American folk-magic, and has been extensively used by the Pennsylvania Dutch hexmeisters, Hoodoo practitioners, and African-American root workers. I hope that this corrected edition will be of interest to those who have suffered with the problems of prior editions, and I welcome all suggestions.
A grimoire is a book describing magical beliefs and practices, written between the late-medieval period and the 18th century. Such books contain astrological correspondences, lists of angels and demons, directions on casting charms and spells, on mixing medicines, summoning unearthly entities, and making talismans. "Magical" books in almost any context, especially books of magical spells, are also called grimoires.
The word grimoire is from the Old French gramaire, and is from the same root as the words grammar and glamour. This is partly because, in the mid-late Middle Ages, Latin "grammars" (books on Latin syntax and diction) were foundational to school and university education, as controlled by the Church - while to the illiterate majority, non-ecclesiastical books were suspect as magic. But "grammar" also denoted, to literate and illiterate alike, a book of basic instruction. A grammar is a description of a set of symbols and how to combine them to create well-formed sentences. A Grimoire is, appropriately enough, a description of a set of magickal symbols and how to combine them properly.