The Book of Magic: From Antiquity to the Enlightenment by Brian Copenhaver
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Overview: The Bible is full of stories featuring forms of magic and possession – from Moses battling with Pharaoh’s wizards to the supernatural actions of Jesus and his disciples. As, over the following centuries, the Christian church attempted to stamp out ‘deviant’ practices, a persistent interest in magic drew strength from this Biblical validation. A strange blend of mumbo-jumbo, fear, fraud and deeply serious study, magic was at the heart of the European Renaissance, fascinating many of its greatest figures.
This is a book filled with incantations, charms, curses, summonings, cures and descriptions of extraordinary, shadowy, only half-understood happenings from long ago. It features writers as various as Thomas Aquinas, John Milton, John Dee, Ptolemy and Paracelsus along with anonymous ancient and medieval works which were, in some cases, viewed as simply too dangerous even to open.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Faith, Beliefs & Philosophy