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Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa: Of Occult Philosophy, Book III (part 3)

This digital edition by Joseph H. Peterson, Copyright © 2000. All rights reserved.

Chapter xxviii. How sometimes names of Spirits are taken from those things over which they are set.

I Finde yet another kinde of names given to the spirits from those things, which they are set over, their names being as it were borrowed from the Stars, or men, or places, or times, or such like things, the divine name being added at the end, thus. The spirit of Saturn is called Sabathiel: the Spirit of Jupiter, Zedekiel: the spirit of Mars, Madimiel: the Spirit of the Sun, Semeliel, or Semeschia; the Spirit of Venus, Nogahel; the spirit of Mercury, Cochabiah, or Cochabiel; the Spirit of the Moon, Jareahel, or Levanael. In like manner also they call the Spirits which are set over the signes by the names of the signes in order; from Aries Teletiel, Suriel, Tomimiel, Sattamiel, Ariel, Betuliel, Masniel, Acrabiel, Chesetiel, Gediel, Deliel, Dagymiel. And if we call them from the latin words, Ariel, Tauriel, Geminiel, Cancriel, Leoniel, Virginiel, Libriel, Scorpiel, Sagittariel, Capriel, Aquariel, Pisciel; and from the Planets, Saturniel, Ioviel, Martiel, Soliah, Veneriel, Mercuriel, Lunael, or Lunaiah. Now because (as we said before) all spirits, as well good as bad, seek for a union with man, which oftentimes in some sort they obtain, we read that some men are called Gods, and angels, and Divels [devils]. So the names of them which are endowed with any singular excellency of vertue, or with some desperate wickedness have departed this life, have obtained a place amongst the names of good and bad Demons, and are reckoned amongst them, whether we shall think that the souls of those men or the Genii whether good or bad are signified. So we read in Esdras that the name of the Archangel Ieremiel was from Ieremiah [Jeremiah] the Prophet. So Zachariel from Zacharia; and Uriel from Uriah the Prophet, whom Ioachim [Joachim] slue [slew]. In like manner Samuel, Ezekiel, Daniel, were the names of Angels as well as Prophets. Phaniel is the name of an Angel, and of the place where Jacob wrestled all night. Ariel is the name of an angel, and is the same as the Lion of God; sometimes also it is the name of an evil Demon, and of a City which is thence called Ariopolis, where the Idol Ariel was worshipped. We finde also in sacred writ that many names of evil Demons had their rise from most wicked men, or from the habitations of wicked men; as the name Astaroth which is the name of an evill Demon, was formerly the name of the City of Og King of Basan, in which dwelt giants; in like manner Astaroth was formerly the City of the Amorrhei; Raphaim a valley, and Ieramiel the country of the Allophyli; and also they were the names of Idols, and evill Demons; as Remma was the statue of the Idol of Damascus; Chamos the Idol of Moab; Melchim the Idol of the Amontae; Bel the Idol of Babylonians; Adramelech the Idol of the Assirians [Assyrians]; Dagon the Idol of the Allophyli. And Philo makes mention of seven golden Statues which the Amorrhei had, which they called the holy Nymphs, which being called upon did shew to the Amorrhei every hour their works; and the names of them were the names of women, which were the wives of seven wicked men, which consecrated them after the floud [flood], viz. Chanaan, Phut, Selath, Nebroth, Abirion, Elath, Desuat, and there were put upon them pretious [precious] stones, engraven, and consecrated, one of which had a vertue to restore sight to the blind; neither could any fire burn these stones; and the books were consecrated with stones, which in like manner could not be burnt with fire, nor cut with yron [iron], nor obliterated with water, until the angel of the Lord took them, and buried them in the bottome of the sea. Moreover we know that Nimbroth, Chodorlaomor, Balach, Amalech, names of Kings, have obtained the order of evill spirits. Also giants are called with divels [devils] after a common name, Enakim íé÷ðò because they did not partake of the image of God i.e. they have not received the splendor of the spiritual intellect, but their reasonm hath multiplied evil kinds of frauds & sins. Therefore they we not reckoned of the species of man (as saith Rabbi Moses the Egyptian) but of the species of beasts, and divels [devils], only that they have the shape of a man, and such (he saith) were the sons of Adam, which were predecessors to Seth after Abel; of which the wise men of the Hebrews said, that Adam begat Tochot úåëåú i.e. divels [devils]. But after that he had found favor in the eyes of God, he begot Seth after his own image, and likeness, i.e. who according to the image of God obtained a human perfection, which he that hath not, is not reckoned of the species of man, by reason of the pravities which are the cause of all evils and mischief. It is also (as saith Porphyry) the opinion of Magicians, that evill souls are turned into the nature of Divels [devils], and become as pernicious as they; which Christ confirmed, when he spake concerning Judas Iscariot: Have not I chosen twelve, and one of you is a divel? which divels therefore they call adventitious, because of mens souls, they are become Divels. Whence the names of wicked men and divels are the same, whether by these we call their souls, or evil Genii, which have taken upon them the names of wicked men, as if it were their persons. Also Behemoth, and the Leviathan signifie beasts, and divels [devils]. By these examples he that is inquisitive shall finde out the names of good, as well as of evil spirits.

Chapter xxix. Of the Characters and Seals of spirits.

We must now speak of the Characters and Seals of spirits. Characters therefore are nothing else then certain unknowable letters and writings, preserving the secrets of the Gods, and names of spirits from the use and reading of prophane men, which the Ancients called Hyeroglyphicall [hieroglyphical], or sacred letters, because devoted to the secrets of the Gods only. For they did account it unlawfull to write the mysteries of the God [gods] with those Characters with which profane and vulgar things were wrote. Whence Porphyry saith, that the Ancients were willing to conceal God, and divine vertues by sensible figures, and by those things which were visible, yet signifying invisible things, as being willing to deliver great mysteries in sacred letters, and explain them in certain Symbolical figures; as when they dedicated all round things to the World, the Sun, the Moon, hope, and fortune, a circle to the heaven, and parts of a circle to the Moon, Pyranide [pyramids] and Obelisks to the fire, and Olympian Gods; a Cylinder to the Sun and Earth; a mans Yard to generation and Juno, to whom also by reason of the feminine sex the triangular figure. Wherefore this kind of Characters hath another root beside the pleasure, and authority of the institutor, of him I say, who received power of instituting, and consecrating these kind of letters, such as were many Prelates amongst divers Nations, and Sects of Religions, whose institutions came not to us, by reason that few of them were delivered by the Authors scatteringly, and by fragments. Of this kind of character therefore are those which Peter Apponus [Petrus d'Abano] notes, as delivered by Honorius of Thebes, the figures whereof are such, being related to our Alphabet.

Theban alphabet

Chapter xxx. Another manner of making Characters, delivered by Cabalists.

Amongst the Hebrews I finde more fashions of Characters, whereof one is most ancient, viz. an Ancient writing which Moses, and the Prophets used, the form of which is not rashly to be discovered [disclosed] to any; for those letters which they use at this day, were instituted by Esdras. There is also amongst them a writing which they call Celestiall, because they shew it placed and figured amongst the Stars, no otherwise then the other Astrologers produce images of signs from the lineaments of Stars. There is also a writing which they call Malachim, or Melachim, i.e. of Angels, or Regal; there is also another, which they call the passing through the River, and the Characters and figures of all these are such.

Celestiall writing.

Scriptura Celestis

Chapter xxxi. There is yet another fashion of Characters, and concerning marks of spirits which are received by revelation.

Chapter xxxii. How good spirits may be called up by us, and how evil spirits may be overcome by us.

Chapter xxxiii. Of the bonds of spirits, and of their adjurations, and castings out.

Chapter xxxv. Of the Mortall and Terrestrial Gods.

Chapter xxxvi. Of Man, how he was created after the Image of God.

Chapter xxxvii. Of mans soul and through what means it is joyned [joined] to the body.

Chapter xxxviii. What Divine gifts man receiveth from above, from the severall Orders of the Intelligences and the heavens.

Chapter xxxix. How the superior Influences, seing they are good by nature, are depraved in these inferior thing, and are made causes of evil.

Chapter xl. That on every man a divine character is imprinted, by the vertue of which man can attain the working of miracles.

Chapter xli. What concerning man after death, diverse Opinions.

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