Ancient magic spells

Ancient magic spells

As long as humanity has had beliefs in deities, the supernatural, and the power of magic, the use of magic, spells, and curses have featured widely across cultures. Very much entwined with human nature, such beliefs and practices have continued to the present day. Archaeological finds show evidence of a plethora of ancient curses and protective spells, such as the discovery of cursed tabletsevil eye talismansand warding items.

The history of curses varies between cultures, locations, religions or beliefs, and times. However, the intention of the curse has consistently been to conjure a supernatural power to inflict misfortune or punishment on a target. A curse, sometimes called jinx, hex, or dark spell, can be verbalized, written, or sometimes cast through elaborate ritual.

The aim is to see harm befall the recipient - bad luck may dog them, death may take them, or any number of dire or annoying fates may plague them. In antiquity a curse was a powerful phenomenon, often viewed as the summoned wrath of gods, or the presence of evil forces.

It was believed that those finding themselves cursed could seek help from magic practitioners, shamans, religious leaders, healers or witchdoctors, and have the curse reversed through counter rituals or prayer. A way to avoid being cursed in the first place was to possess certain items of protection or warding. The purpose of spells and curses were, and remain today, aimed at punishing or changing behavior, warding off disaster, and controlling the actions of other people.

Ancient Egyptian curses are probably the most notorious. They gained infamy in when the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun was opened. The mysterious deaths of some of the archaeology team and prominent visitors to the tomb soon after it was opened, and the subsequent publicity, caused a firestorm of speculation as to the power of the curses.

Journalists and authors of the day fanned the flames. In reality, deadly curses in royal tombs in Egypt are rare, as the idea of invaders or raiders breeching the tomb and desecrating the contents was unthinkable and even dangerous to inscribe.

Warnings or wards were more frequently used to preserve the ritual purity of a tomb, or for generalized protection. Wikipedia notes that some curses can be found in private tombs of the Old Kingdom.

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One tomb from the 9 th to 10 th dynasty warns "any ruler who The Royal Cobra Uraeus on the mask of Tutankhamun represented a protector goddess, and not a curse.

Curses, or the threat of cursed objects, was a clever method used to protect valuables. During the Medieval period, book curses were widely used and effective at keeping thieves away from precious tomes and important scrolls.Everyone has at least a passing interest in ancient books of spells, though they aren't always what you would expect after seeing too many witchy movies.

Still, the amount of occult knowledge and history you can get from a really old spell book can't be ignored. If you start to read through any of these books, you'll notice that they are very different from the witchcraft we know of today. Most of these ancient books are based on ceremonial magic, not witchcraft.

Witches were fairly private and didn't publish books like these, but ceremonial magicians tended to gather in groups and were much more vocal about sharing their mystical knowledge.

You can order copies of any of these book, just scroll down to the bottom of the page for pics and links. Necronomicon Well, though I'm sure this is one of the first ancient spell books that comes to mind, I've already discussed this one on another page. Not to mention the fact that it's not an ancient book of spells at all, but a modern book whose idea came from H.

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P Lovecraft horror fiction. Not only is it recent, it's not filled with real spells at all. Book of Abramelin the Mage This book of magic dates to the mid s, and it tells the tale of an Egyptian magician who teaches this system of ceremonial magic to a man named Abraham. The story is written from Abraham's point of view, and he describes the magickal system to his son Lamech.

The magic involves elaborate rituals that involve angelic and demonic workings and coded Magic Squares. The Key of Solomon Not actually written by King Solomon, this old text was likely compiled in the 14th or 15th centuries. Translations exist in Latin, French and Hebrew as well as a more modern English one.

ancient magic spells

The book is filled with complex rituals with symbols to summon and contain spirits, angels and demons. There are further details on how to work with these spirits to make them do your bidding. The Black Pullet Now we have an 18th century grimoire that features spells and rituals that dabble in magick as well as necromancy. The style of magick is mainly the use of talismans, amulets and enchanted rings.

The title refers to one specific set of rituals, that will produce the Black Pullet a chicken that will lay golden eggsthough it is probably referring to a source of wealth rather than an actual chicken. The author of the Black Pullet is unknown, except that he was a soldier in Napoleon's army. Three Books of Occult Philosophy This is a set of books written by Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa in the early s, covering 3 aspects of magick: elemental, celestial and intellectual.

The books are filled with information on how the many forms of magick relate to each other, and how occult sciences operate. These ancient books of spells are still often used as reference material for witches and magickal practitioners today.

Copyrightfree-witchcraft-spells.Marguerite Johnson does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

Most Useful Spells in OSRS

In our sexual histories series, authors explore changing sexual mores from antiquity to today. It was a well-kept secret among historians during the late 19th and early 20th centuries that the practice of magic was widespread in the ancient Mediterranean.

Historians wanted to keep the activity low-key because it did not support their idealised view of the Greeks and Romans. Today, however, magic is a legitimate area of scholarly enquiry, providing insights into ancient belief systems as well as cultural and social practices.

While magic was discouraged and sometimes even punished in antiquity, it thrived all the same. Authorities publicly condemned it, but tended to ignore its powerful hold. Erotic spells were a popular form of magic. Professional magic practitioners charged fees for writing erotic charms, making enchanted dolls sometimes called poppetsand even directing curses against rivals in love. Magic is widely attested in archaeological evidence, spell books and literature from both Greece and Rome, as well as Egypt and the Middle East.

The Greek Magical Papyri, for example, from Graeco-Roman Egyptis a large collection of papyri listing spells for many purposes. The collection was compiled from sources dating from the second century BC to the fifth century AD, and includes numerous spells of attraction.

ancient magic spells

Read more: In ancient Mesopotamia, sex among the gods shook heaven and earth. Some spells involve making dolls, which were intended to represent the object of desire usually a woman who was either unaware or resistant to a would-be admirer. Instructions specified how an erotic doll should be made, what words should be said over it, and where it should be deposited.

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When enacting sympathetic magic with a doll, the spell-caster believes that whatever action is performed on it — be it physical or psychic — will be transferred to the human it represents. Fashioned from unbaked clay, the doll was found in a terracotta vase in Egypt. The spells that accompanied such dolls and, indeed, the spells from antiquity on all manner of topics, were not mild in the language and imagery employed. Ancient spells were often violent, brutal and without any sense of caution or remorse.

In the spell that comes with the Louvre Doll, the language is both frightening and repellent in a modern context.

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For example, one part of the spell directed at Ptolemais reads:. Such language is hardly indicative of any emotion pertaining to love, or even attraction. Especially when combined with the doll, the spell may strike a modern reader as obsessive perhaps reminiscent of a stalker or online troll and even misogynistic.

Indeed, rather than seeking love, the intention behind the spell suggests seeking control and domination.

Such were the gender and sexual dynamics of antiquity. But in a masculine world, in which competition in all aspects of life was intense, and the goal of victory was paramount, violent language was typical in spells pertaining to anything from success in a court case to the rigging of a chariot race. Indeed, one theory suggests that the more ferocious the words, the more powerful and effective the spell. Most ancient evidence attests to men as both professional magical practitioners and their clients.As long as humanity has had beliefs in a higher power, the use of magic, spells, curses, and incantations have featured widely across cultures.

Here we feature five manuscripts that provide a fascinating window into the magic of the ancients. Desiring to acquire this wisdom, Abraham said he travelled to Mayence Mainz to study under a Rabbi, called Moses. Abraham studied under Moses for four years before travelling for the next six years of his life, eventually reaching Egypt.

The Ancient Art of Magic, Curses and Supernatural Spells

Abramelin is said to have then taught Abraham his Kabbalistic magic and gave him two manuscripts to copy from. As part of a larger collection known as the Lesser Keys of Solomon, the Ars Notoria is a book that is said to allow followers a mastery of academia, giving them greater eloquence, a perfect memory, and wisdom.

The Ars Notoria is one of five books within a grimoire called the Lesser Keys of Solomon, an anonymous text that was compiled from other works in the 17th century, and focuses on demonology. The Ars Notoria is the oldest portion of the Lesser of the Keys grimoire, dating back to the 13th century.

However, the texts contained within are a collection of orations, prayers, and magical words which date back to well before the s. The prayers are in several languages, including Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.

Those who practice liberal arts, such as arithmetic, geometry, and philosophy, are promised a mastery of their subject if they devote themselves to the Ars Notoria. Pseudomonarchia Daemonum, also known as the False Hierarchy of Demons, is a great compendium from the 16th century dictating the names of sixty-nine demons. The list initially appeared as an appendix to a book about demonology and witchcraft by Johann Weyer. The son of a civic service merchant, Johann Weyer was a Dutch doctor and occult practitioner born in the Netherlands in Well versed in Latin from a young age, Weyer quickly became a student of Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa, a famous magician, theologian, and occultist in Antwerp.

It appears that Weyer's fascination with magic began while working under Agippa, but later escalated after he became a doctor in his own right: he was summoned to a particular fortune teller's court case and thereby asked by the judge for advice on the topic.

This court case started his interest in researching the witchcraft way of life, culminating with his decision to attempt to defend those who were accused of practicing. Twenty-seven years after this case, when Weyer was sixty-two years old, he published Pseudomonarchia Daemonum. Weyer's intention was to create a creed to vet out the accused who were, in fact, innocent. How helpful Weyer's efforts for the accused witches were remains unseen, yet there is evidence that his pleas for their mercy went predominately ignored.

The Picatrix is an ancient Arabian book of astrology and occult magic dating back to the 10th or 11th century, which has gained notoriety for the obscene nature of its magical recipes.

ancient magic spells

The Picatrix, with its cryptic astrological descriptions and spells covering almost every conceivable wish or desire, has been translated and used by many cultures over the centuries, and continues to fascinate occult followers from around the world.

Eventually, the Arabic writings were translated into Spanish, and later into Latin in for the Castilian king Alfonso the Wise. At this time it took on the Latin title Picatrix. The text is composed of both magic and astrology. One element that has contributed to the notoriety of the Picatrix is the obscene nature of its magical recipes.

Ingredients include: blood, bodily excretions, brain matter mixed with copious amounts of hashish, opium, and psychoactive plants.Call it a happy accident: When a group of Serbian archaeologists recently uncovered a cache of 2,year-old skeletons, they unearthed a set of mysterious scrolls covered with Aramaic curses, too. And like the objects found in Syria, the spells were often carried around with a person until they came to pass.

Amulets designed to carry spells became a must-have fashion accessory and are regularly found in Ancient Greek and Roman grave sites and digs. Amulets may have looked decorative, but their contents felt like life and death to believers, who paid magicians to give them scrolls and talismans that put their intentions into physical form.

Think of curse tablets as the takedowns of the ancient world: If someone disrespected or harmed you, you could head to your local magician and pay to curse them. People cursed people who hurt their family members, but they also cursed them when they committed crimes or even entered into court cases against them.

Large caches of curse tablets have been found in Roman digs in the modern-day United Kingdom. One such tablet invokes the god Mercury to bring down a curse on Varianus, Peregrina and Sabinianus, whom the curser thought had brought harm on their animal. Of course, if someone dissed you, you also had the option of creating a tiny effigy to do harm to.

The descriptions above might make you think that everyone in the ancient world was into binding magic. Though both involved the gods, magic involved manipulating gods whereas other rituals relied on supplication and offerings in the hopes that the gods might favor the person doing the asking.

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Lesson learned: If you only use your ancient curses, spells and charms to inflict mild harm instead of death, you should be okay. Now where did that curse tablet go? Continue or Give a Gift. Privacy Terms of Use Sign up.

ancient magic spells

SmartNews History. History Archaeology. World History. Featured: The True Story of 'Mrs. Science Age of Humans.Their origins date back to the dawn of writing and their subsequent history is entwined with that of the religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the development of science, the cultural influence of print, and the social impact of European colonialism.

As long as humanity has had beliefs in a higher power, the use of magic, spells, curses, and incantations have featured widely across cultures. Witchcraft of some sort has probably existed since humans first banded together in groups. Simple sorcery or the use of magic accessible to ordinary peoplesuch as setting out offerings to helpful spirits or using charms, can be found in almost all traditional societies.

Prehistoric art depicts magical rites to ensure successful hunting, and also seems to depict religious rituals involving people dancing in animal costumes. Shamanism, the practice of contacting spirits through dream work and meditative trances, is probably the oldest religion, and early shamans collected much knowledge about magic and magical tools. Witches of ancient Sumeria and Babylonia invented an elaborate Demonology.

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They had a belief that the world was full of spirits and that most of these spirits were hostile. Each person was supposed to have their own spirit which would protect them from demons and enemies, which could only be fought by the use of magic including amulets, incantations, and exorcisms. Witches in the air Francisco Goya. Western beliefs about witchcraft grew largely out of the mythologies and folklore of ancient peoples, especially the Egyptians, Hebrews, Greeks, and Romans. Witches in ancient Egypt purportedly used their wisdom and knowledge of amulets, spells, formulas, and figures to bend the cosmic powers to their purpose or that of their clients.

Further reading: Amulets and Talismans-Differences and Similarities. The Greeks had their own form of magic, which was close to a religion, known as Theurgy the practice of rituals, often seen as magical in nature, performed with the intention of invoking the action of the gods, especially with the goal of uniting with the divine and perfecting oneself.

Some argue, however, that the real roots of witchcraft and magic as we know it comes from the Celts, a diverse group of Iron Age tribal societies that flourished between about BC and AD in northern Europe especially the British Isles. Believed to be descendants of Indo-Europeans, the Celts were a brilliant and dynamic people, gifted artists, musicians, storytellers, and metalworkers, as well as expert farmers and fierce warriors much feared by their adversaries, the Romans.

They were also a deeply spiritual people, who worshipped both a god and a goddess. They believed in reincarnation and that after death they went to the Summerland for rest and renewal while awaiting rebirth. By about BC, a priestly class known as the Druids had developed, who became the priests of the Celtic religion as well as teachers, judges, astrologers, healers, midwives, and bards. The religious beliefs and practices of the Celts, their love for the land, and their veneration of trees the oak in particular grew into what later became known as Paganism, although this label is also used for the polytheistic beliefs of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans.

Blended over several centuries with the beliefs and rituals of other Indo-European groups, this spawned such practices as concocting potions and ointments, casting spells and performing works of magic, all of which along with many of the nature-based beliefs held by the Celts and other groups became collectively known as witchcraft in the Medieval Period. Further reading: Magick through History.

Humankind has long dabbled in the supernatural, lured by the promise of obtaining power and enlightenment. Several texts have been devoted to this practice, outlining complicated and mysterious rituals that were presented as the key to achieving communion with otherworldly spirits. Affiliate link. The Greek magical papyri Latin Papyri Graecae Magicae, abbreviated PGM is the name given by scholars to a body of papyri from Greco-Roman Egypt which each contains a collection of magical spells, formulae, hymns, and rituals.

The materials in the papyri date from the 2nd century BC to the 5th century AD. The manuscripts came to light through the antiquities trade, from the 18th century onwards. The texts were published in a series, and individual texts are referenced using the abbreviation PGM plus the volume and item number.These days, not too many people sincerely believe in magic.

Sure, we all love to imagine that the owl delivering our Hogwarts letter just got lost. In ancient times, though, the belief in magic—and witchcraft—was very much a real thing.

The Ancient Art of Magic, Curses and Supernatural Spells

In fact, some of our ancestors were convinced that if they performed a spell correctly, they would see real, tangible results. Here are 10 of the most outlandish spells that people used to take seriously.

Many of them are actually quite terrifying…. While most people probably associate voodoo dolls with revenge, the ancient Greeks and Romans used them to make people fall in love. If there was someone they wished would fall madly in love with them, they would build two figurines from clay. The first figure would resemble the god Apollo, while the second would resemble the person they loved… on their knees… getting their head chopped off by the Apollo figurine.

So romantic! Several steps later, you would, presumably, have forced someone into loving you. Makes perfect sense. Some ancient cultures believed it was possible to summon a god—or, at least, a messenger of the gods—using a table made of olive wood, bricks, incense, myrrh, and goose fat.

After some casual note: not actually casual rounds of incantations, a figure with a nose on his feet—an archangel, to be exact—would appear and reveal all the dark and forbidden secrets of the universe. Another option is to use Wikipedia. One 1,year-old spell was supposed to make you invisible. It involved saying the magic words and rubbing oil with crocodile dung on your face—you know, the usual.

And to think that Harry Potter got away with just using a cloak! In case you ever find yourself in a chariot race in the 21st century and you happen to be the kind of person who wants to cheat in order to win, some ancient Greek spells might come in handy.

One spell in particular asked the gods to straight-up murder the other team. Presumably, most chariot racers had an asterisk next to their records. It was a dark time for the sport, for sure.

If the voodoo dolls in the beginning of this list seemed like too much, you could try making this ancient Greek love potion instead. It involved spending four days drowning a scarab in milk, then pouring it out, and slicing the scarab in half.

First, cut off the head of a donkey and put it between your feet. Say no more, right? The whole process, which aside from donkey-cide requires some gargling of blood, would also have to be done eight times in four days in order to work. Apparently no one worked a nine-to-five back then. If somebody really wronged you and you are also Voldemort, maybeyou could perform a death spell.

This one has to be performed not eight times, but 14 times in order to work properly. You also have to attach irritating palm fibers to your penis, which is pretty close to nuts. The ancient Egyptians were extremely concerned about dog bites, as they thought the animals were venomous perhaps this is why they strongly preferred cats. Luckily, they had a handy magical spell to remove the venom. The Assyrians and Babylonians thought that you could make any word magical by repeating it several times.

It sure is crazy what our ancestors thought they could make happen with the help of some bonkers incantations and witchcraft.