(Close Window)
Topic: If you had a magical Grimoire?
Message: Posted by: egregor (Aug 12, 2006 09:34PM)
If you had a magical grimoire, what would it look like, and what would it do, or be capable of doing. I'd like to hear serious detailed descriptions.
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 12, 2006 10:06PM)
Heh-heh! -IF- I had a magickal grimoire...well, one small one (among others) would begin with the Bornless Ritual and go on to explain how to draw a magick circle and triangle of evocation. It would list numerous spirits (in this case, evil ones), how they appear, what rank they have in the hierarchy, what powers they have and what they will provide for the magician, and so on. It will provide the seals and other information concerning the evocation of these spirits. Not the least important, it will tell you precisely how to send the nasty fellows back to where they came from and how to prevent them from coming back by themselves.

Of course, not all the required information is contained in the grimoire itself. You would be required to know how to cleanse the working area of unwanted entities that might interfere with the operation, how to prepare yourself and any assistants for the ritual, what colors, materials, incenses, etc. should be used, what day and/or time of day to perform the operation, and so on. Some of this can be found in books, some not.

However, -not- having a magickal grimoire, I really don't think I can answer the question. :stare:

Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Aug 12, 2006 10:07PM)
... the Al Azif... 'nuf said.
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Aug 12, 2006 11:28PM)
This is a topic that holds a lot of interest for me. I'm a collector of grimoires.

My two most prized are very unique:

The first one was found in a antique shop in Providence Rhode Island about 30 years ago. It is covered in some sort of hide, its covering is burnt a bit, but no damage other than surface discoloration exists. There is no writing on the cover, but there are some glyphs that I have yet been able to identify drawn in with some type of brownish ink. The pages of the tomb are not paper but some type of hide that has been pressed to be as thin and pliable as paper. The writing, if you can call it that is faded and also in that brownish ink, some of which has either faded or been rubbed out leaving a faint yellow outline of what was originally there. The pages are full of glyphs similar to these on the cover, there are also drawings some look like geometric stapes, others like creatures from a nightmare. In some places, notes in what appears to be Arabic are written in what I would call the margins. When I got the book, there were notes on yellowed paper between some of the pages. These notes were written in what appears to be a fountain pen as the ink is blobbed and smeared. Whomever wrote these notes has/had a handwriting even worse than mine. What I could make out read like excerpts of Sumerian myths. Much of what was written is either undecipherable, or makes no sense.

My other prize came from a friend who worked on the Adam's estate in New Hampshire. He found it one day during restoration of a cottage, no one else claimed it, so he kept it. It is a leather bound book about the size of a hard back book you could find in a book store, many of the pages at the end are still blank. The book is very strange, it contains poems in both English and French, a lot of writing in the language described by Dee, many drawings and illustrations of a geometric nature, and notes in English. Some of the notes name no sense, they are like puzzles as is some of the writing in the other language I mentioned. I also found that some of the blank pages were not blank and some of the written pages contained text hidden from plain sight. It is definitely a spell book, but important pieces have been left out or hidden either in riddle or just invisible to the eye.

My friend Terry Kahn showed me her grimoire treasure. Her mother was very close to a "magician" in San Francisco during the late 60s and early 70s. She called him Uncle "A" She has several spiral bound notebooks that contain spells and invocations. These are written in ball point pen and pencil on white line paper (although it is yellowish now due to age. Much of it is in English although some is in a butchered form of Latin. Diagrams, pictures of naked people, knifes and ceremonial tools, sacred geometric symbols, and some of what I found in the notes on the first grimoire mentioned here. These books seem to be a mixture of elements from both my grimoires and other sources. I'm not sure where the author got the information.

I've seen other examples of grimoires, some were unassuming little black books of less than 20 pages that I found in a library in Paris, to large tomes that I saw in private collections and places best left unsaid.

If this is what you are looking for, I'm glad to add my little contribution.
If you are looking for what we would like in a magic (as in performance art) grimoires, let me know. I have ideas on that and have constructed a few for private customers.

Message: Posted by: Mystician (Aug 12, 2006 11:38PM)
Hmm.. it would be bound in skin, perferrably human.
The pages would have the ability to appear blank to a mortal, or appear as innocent text, until called upon with the right incantation, at which point the writing would either appear (fade in) or re-scramble itself to it's proper form.

For self defense, it's cover would suddenly develop acne, whereby it would pop it's zits in the general direction of those attacking me, covering them in pus. ..eww..

Seriously though, there was a discussion last year, I beleive, of applying the "magic coloring book" principle to a grimoire - a pretty nifty idea.
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Aug 12, 2006 11:47PM)

That CB principle works well, I made 10 of them for in hard cover a few years ago. The 2-way works much better than the 3-way though. I believe there is a marketed version in soft-cover available.

As for commerical books, Brother Shadow has a beautiful one that he sells, or used to sell. A true work of art.

Message: Posted by: D Byrd (Aug 13, 2006 12:01AM)
I hear ya brother. The only problem is trying to find a virgin skin just laying around not being used these days. Heck for that matter it's down right impossible to find a virgin at all.
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Aug 13, 2006 12:03AM)

Go to a magic club meeting. More than enough pickens there.

Message: Posted by: D Byrd (Aug 13, 2006 12:30AM)
Cold Tony Cold! :0)
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Aug 13, 2006 12:41AM)
Yes Sir, the Cold Hard Truth. :)

Message: Posted by: magus (Aug 13, 2006 02:14AM)
If I had a Magical Grimoire...
It would not have a title on the cover- you would know what it is.
It might have symbols tooled into the leather on the cover.
It would contain inside-
Written partially in English (so people know what it is)with portions written in a foreign script (so people cannot perform your spells- or try)
There would be drawings, sketches Showing the proper way and proportins for a pentagram, how it should be oriented and the symbols and runes that decorate it.
Always cut you mandrake in pieces no larger than 2" or it won't ...
The spell from (Magick Book title here) says to do this during a full moon- try 2 days later for best effect.
When I opened it- the wind would blow.
When I started to do a spell, the book would glow.
As I read it, occasionally a page would turn by itself.
When I reached to take the book off the shelf, it would come part way out of the bookcase on it's own.
When I closed the book it would seem to deflate slightly in thickness.
Stray bits of sound would seem to come, faintly from the book as I use it.

Is that what you mean?
Message: Posted by: scolman (Aug 13, 2006 08:39AM)
On 2006-08-13 00:47, Tony Iacoviello wrote:

That CB principle works well, I made 10 of them for in hard cover a few years ago. The 2-way works much better than the 3-way though. I believe there is a marketed version in soft-cover available.

As for commerical books, Brother Shadow has a beautiful one that he sells, or used to sell. A true work of art.


Not to get too far off topic - I love the colouring book principle for grimoires -made quite a few of these as well. I included one in the original Druid's Bloodsphere in my magic shop. It was one heck of a time consuming process as I used proper parchment paper and then bound it all myself. I also made one in my own collection that incorporates the "bleeding book" principle. I think its mentioned in one of ye Mage's articles in the Invocation series. So the text appears in a formerly blank book and then vanishes again. After the book is placed back on the table, blood starts oozing from the bottom half of the tome. Of course, the more it's used, the more "blood encrusted" the book becomes. The pages needed to be replaced every so often of course.

Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 13, 2006 09:32AM)
That's great, scolman! I can imagine that it was a lot of work to construct.

Message: Posted by: Jim Magus (Aug 13, 2006 09:56AM)
Alhazred's Fate was the name of the routine in the Joe Givan issue of New Invocation (February 1990), describing a grimoire that starts bleeding (using the old coloring book principle). Joe showed me the one he made at an Invocational convention, and it was a beauty. So simple yet so powerful. Ed Loveland constructed one from the description in NI magazine that he showed me at a Weerd Weekend. It too was an awesome work of art.
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Aug 13, 2006 10:06AM)
Nice! The Al Azif / Necronomicon! Bleeding!
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 13, 2006 01:05PM)
Grimoires in my possession:

The Key of Solomon
The Lesser Key of Solomon
Goetia (separate from the Lesser Key)
Abramelin the Mage
The Grimoire of Honorius

Message: Posted by: Mystician (Aug 13, 2006 01:44PM)
How about a Grimoire that reads itself aloud ? ;)
Part spellbook/part familiar ?
Message: Posted by: The Curator (Aug 13, 2006 02:02PM)
There's a collection of grimoires in the Surnateum's Library: http://www.surnateum.org/English/surnateum/collection/connaissances.htm
My favourite is the Calendrier Magique de Croze et Orzi (1895) and a handwritten witch grimoire (1790) with a formula for a powder of longevity.

If you open a dusty grimoire, a lesser but annoying demon* may appear until you slam the grimoire shut.

*Zombi (ball) demon ;)
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 13, 2006 02:35PM)
I neglected to say when I listed my grimoires that none of mine are as interesting as Tony's, and none were published prior to the early 1900's.

Also, I forgot to mention >The Magus< by Francis Barrett.

Message: Posted by: egregor (Aug 13, 2006 08:41PM)
You've all added some very interesting insights, but what I was looking for specifically was more as a tool for performance. I had a dream that gave me an insight into making the pages self turning, and the mechanics to do this. It led me to other ideas for the grimoir as an entire act. Such as sitting down with your guests and exclaiming that you are going to tell a story from the grimoir that is on page 32, at which time you point to the grimoir and it turns to that page. Perhaps it turns to a story about a haunted key, and your prop is there in the grimoir. I was thinking a self contained miracle grimoir with several stories and the props for them included in the book. In my dream, it was made from some fleshy material with a face in the center cover of the book that looked like one of Doug Higley's creations that growled at me when I woke it up. What sort of things would your ideal grimoir do besides just automatically turning pages.
Message: Posted by: kaytracy (Aug 13, 2006 08:59PM)
Mine has hand crafted leather binding, with eyes on the cover to watch over itself, and keep alert for intruders.
The cover also contains a "code wheel" and dial as some of the contents are not in standard "english", or Roman letters!
The latch on the inner cover holds the curse for those who trespass unbidden.

I wear a matching eye pendant about my neck at times- one never knows when one will need to view the pages and not be near the book!
There is no mouth on the book, for it might blab a bit if left alone too long, you know how chatty soem familiars can get, and yes Tony, I agree with you Virgin hide is not that hard to find....(No one said in my line it had to be virgin Girls!)

Love all!
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 13, 2006 10:07PM)
Hmmm. Some understood what you were asking; others did not. Some of us feel a bit silly for missing the point. Still, it was an interesting thread so far.

Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Aug 13, 2006 10:45PM)
A used book dealer here in Houston had one for a long time. It was in a French dialect and it was bound in human skin. Talk about creepy. It had code wheels and all sorts of other things. It was all handwritten.

I think the idea of using a blow book (old name for the CB principle) would be excellent. This is found in Scot, by the way. I don't know if I would overdo the self-opening book idea. Collector's Workshop made a book like that at one time, but it's not available any longer.

I have a "Book of Ancient Mysteries" that is a very large one, about 16 inches by 24 inches by 4 inches thick. it is made of leather, and is actually a large box. I may post pictures some where sometime.
Message: Posted by: The Curator (Aug 14, 2006 12:41AM)
Think about Prospero's Books in Peter Greenaway's film.
Message: Posted by: egregor (Aug 14, 2006 04:17AM)
Check out some of these beauties.
Message: Posted by: SamOne (Aug 14, 2006 08:24AM)
Just asking myself if there is any azteq grimoire, or any azteq related magic book ?
Message: Posted by: The Curator (Aug 14, 2006 09:15AM)
If you want the Nine Gates ...
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Aug 14, 2006 09:50AM)
On 2006-08-14 09:24, SamOne wrote:
Just asking myself if there is any azteq grimoire, or any azteq related magic book ?


The codices of the Mesoamericans were destroyed by the Spaniards...so they say.

Google codex (which is one of the Latin words for book) and Aztec. Note the spelling. Azteq will probably lead you up a blind alley.

Also, (on soapbox) spelling and pronunciation are [b]critical[/b] when casting spells and constructing circles. Continuous lines are important in completed circles. There are hundreds of examples in lore of magicians who made tiny mistakes and became victims of their own greed.

So even if you are not "really" casting spells or "really" constructing circles, you must behave as if it is critical.
Message: Posted by: coupcoupdaddy (Aug 14, 2006 09:56AM)
Grammar. Words in right order. Same origin. Spell.

H D X!

--Lydia 13
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Aug 14, 2006 10:16AM)
Look at what happened in Army of Darkness. The words were misspoken, and Gort caused the Earth to stand still for a day. Not a good thing.

Saftey tip people. Thank you Bill and Isso.

Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 14, 2006 11:33AM)
On 2006-08-14 10:50, Bill Palmer wrote:

So even if you are not "really" casting spells or "really" constructing circles, you must behave as if it is critical.

Hmmmm, not only for authenticity, but just to be on the safe side. :eek:
Message: Posted by: tag (Aug 14, 2006 12:06PM)
Thought this article may be interesting for the 'bound in human skin' types:
[url=http://www.eyewitnessnewstv.com/Global/story.asp?S=4329836&nav=F2DO/]Some of nation's best libraries have books bound in human skin[/url]

Edit: Changed to website that doesn't require annoying registration, apologies in advance.
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Aug 14, 2006 01:09PM)
Lovely, tag, thanks for that article.

Message: Posted by: waltsal (Aug 14, 2006 02:59PM)
As far as Aztec grimoires, sadly, No. All Aztec books were burned and destroyed by the Church to keep profane knowledge from true believers. Only three Codex survive out of the many thousands that were kept in Aztec holy places. The Codex that survive apparently tell some Aztec myths.