Ms. Description

Collections relating to Magic and Witchcraft from the papers of various 16th and 17th century astrologers. Including Key of Solomon (English) and also the Compendium heptarchiae mysticae of Dee. (Mathers did not refer to this MS. when he compiled his Key of Solomon)

Postby John J. Coughlin » Tue May 11, 2004 8:38 pm

From British Library:

36674. COLLECTIONS relating to Magic and Witchcraft from the papers
of various 16th and 17th century astrologers, finally put together
probably in the library of John Somers, Lord Somers (v. catalogue
in Harl. MS. 7191, f. 158 b). The table of contents on f. 3 is in
the same hand as Somers' catalogue. Artt. 1-4 belonged early in
the 17th cent. to Gabriel Harvey, the poet and friend of Spenser,
who has annotated them throughout (compare the hand with
Add. MS. 32494). Art. 10 and probably some other articles were
collected by Elias Ashmole. Later owners are noticed below.
1. " Here begynneth the booke of Kynge Solomon called the Kay
of Knowledge," to which Harvey adds "Clavicula Salomonis.
Extat Latine: et legi." In two books. There are many treatises
with similiar titles, but this does not agree with the Clavicula
edited by S. L. M. Mathers (London, 1889), nor with the treatise
known as Lemegeton. The first rubric is " Orysons to be sayde
when you coniure," and the last " Here follow the the manner howe
to make the Pentacle." In a late 16th cent. hand. f. 5.
2. " This torne booke was found amongst the paper bookes and secret
writings of Doctor Caiis, master and founder of Caius Colledg.
Doctor Legg gave it to Mr Fletcher, fellowe of the same colledg,
and a learned artist for his time " (so Harvey). A note-book
containing: (a) A long extract from the De Occulta Philosopliia of
Henricus Cornelius Agrippa, lib. iv. (miswritten iii.), and the
Heptameron of Petrus de Abano (pr. at Lyon, n. d., as an appendix
to Cornelius Agrippa), corresponding to pp. 521-589 of the Lyon
edition, but not quite in the same order. The table of " angeli
horarum " occurs twice, at the beginning and end, in both cases
incomplete. f. 23;-(b) Miscellaneous forms of conjuration, rules
etc. f. 38. Dr. John Caius died in 1573, only two days after
be bad resigned the mastership to Thomas Legge. For John
Fletcher, who became fellow in 1587 and died 1613, see Venn's
Biogr. Hist. of Gonville and Caius College, i. p. 95. At the end
(f. 45) Harvey has added the note, " The best skill that Mr Butler
[William Butler, d. 1618] physician had in niggromancie with
Agrippa's occulta philosophia, as his coosen Ponder upon his oathe
often repeated seriously intimated unto me." '
3. " An excellent booke of the arte of magicke first begoone the XXIIth
of Marche anno Domini 1567," preceded by a few notes, including
a prayer " reuealed by Kinge Solomon anno Domini 1567 die 20
Februarii." Beg. " First it is good arte allwayes for the mr that
must begin this arte to leaue swearinge." The whole is in a hand
"certified by Mr Macray of the Bodleian, July 1868 " (f. 47), as
that of Simon Forman, the astrologer (d. 1611). f. 47.
4. " Vision," dated 24 Feb. 1567 [? more astronomico = 156]-
6 Apr. 1567, seen by " H. G." and his " skrier " John Davis.
Harvey endorsed them " Certaine strang visions or apparitions of
memorable note. Anno 1567. Lately imparted unto mee for
secrets of match importance. A notable journal of an experimental
magitian." He was ignorant of the name of the magician, since
he adds the note (f. 59) " The visions of Sir Th. S. himself as is
credibly supposed. Though Mr Jon Wood imagines one G. H.
Tempus demonstrativum reuelabit." Possibly they reached
Harvey through Sir Thomas Smith, but it seems worth suggesting
that the skrier may have been John Davys the navigator, and his
master Humphrey Gilbert, who was then apparently in England
but left shortly afterwards for Ireland. f. 58.
5. " Regulae utilissirmae in artem magicam " and other collections in
Latin and English in a 17th cent. hand. Begins with a figure
which " tulit angelus Domini Danieli." Another copy is in Sloane
MS. 3850, ff. 76-113, but is incomplte. f. 64.
6. Conjurations and diagrams, partly perhaps in the same hand as
art. 5. At ff. 97, 98 are two large magical figure., each covering a
double page. f. 92.
7. Tract, in a hand of about the beginning of the 17th cent., beg.
First you must knowe that none of the spirits will obey thee."
f. 104.
8. Three vellum sheets with large magical figures in 17th cent.
hands. f. 110.
9. Medical and other charms, Latin and English, in a band of the early
l6th cent. Beg. " Heliotropia collecta sole existente in ariete."
f. 113.
10. Collections of Elias Ashmole, viz. : (a Notes of astrological
questions, etc., dated 12 July 1597-10 Oct. In Ashmole's
hand. Probably copied from some of' Simon Forman's pratice-
books, now in the Ashmole collection at Oxford. f. 122;-(b)
" Catalogue of Mr Boevey's magical bookes "; the first page is in
Ashmole's hand. f. 123;-(c,) Extract, in Ashmole's hand, from
the Vision of Humphrey Smith the quaker (printed, 1660), which
was held to predict the fire of London. f. 129;-(d) Prayers and
conjurations.. f. 13() ;-(e) Examinations, etc., in the case of
Margaret Russell alias Countess, accused of bewitching Elizabeth
Jennins, 25-27 Apr. 1622, with note by Ashmole referring to the
practice-book (Ashm. MS. 222) of Richard Napier (a pupil of
Forman's, Rector of Gt. Linford, co. Bucks), who was called in to
the child Jennins in July following. f. 134;-(f) Theological
notes on " diabolus," etc., and on St. Luke xi. 24. ff. 138, 140;
(g) Notes, including the nativity of " our queene Mary " [Henrietta
Maria], books lent to " the Lady Cleveland " [Anne 1st, or Lucy
2nd, wife of Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Cleveland] and to
" Mr Bostock," etc. f. 141 ;-(h) Prayer " transcribed from a printed
paper which Moses the Jew preacher to the Jewes and liueth at
Mr Whitbyes house brought mee. It was given by a French
astrologue to Maria Rodrigues a French Jew that lyeth at Mr
Cookes," etc., 4 Mar. 165 6, followed by other prayers. f. 143;-
(i) Recipes " against witchcraft," etc., in the hand of Richard
Napier. f. 145, (k) Another prayer. f. 146;-(l) Conjurations
(cf. art. 6). On the back are questions put to some astrologer by
Richard afterwards Sir Richard) Napier, nephew of the above
Richard, relating to his family fortunes, dat. 16 Mar. 1629. f. 147;
-(m) " How to discover a witch." f. 148.
11. Magical treatise in a late 16th cent. hand, with colophon,
" Here is ane end of theise approved experimentes, being the
practizes of 31, Roger. Bacon and a certayne Turke, then his fellow
in Brazenhowse Collidge in Oxford. And often since tried for
moost certayne experimentes as ever were, being both the keyes
and bondes of Salomon his secret bookes of art, the which he let
graven in brasse." The tract, which is much mutilated at the
edges, is an abridged translation of the Latin contained in Sloane
MSS. 3885, f. 26, 3853, f. 9. The begnning is torn. f. 149.
12. " Compendium heptarchiae mysticae," by John Dec. Holograph.
Written not earlier than 1583, apparently a rough draft of the
treatise contained in Sloane MSS. 3191 (f. 33, also holograph) and
2599 (Ashmole's copy). f. 167.
13. Papers relating to witches, etc., viz, : (a) Evidence purporting to
have been given at Taunton, co. Som., against Edward Bull and
Joan Greedie, 13 Aug. 1626, being a long dialogue of the spirits
possessing one Edward Dynham. f. 189 ;-(b) Examination of
Edmund Robinson, son of Edmund Robinson of Pendle Forest,
freemason, taken at Padiam [Padiham, co. Lane.], before Richard
Shuttleworth and John Starkey, 10 Feb. 163 . f. 193;-©
Examination and confession of Margret Johnson of Marsden,
widow, taken before the same, 9 Mar. 163. f. 196 ;-(d) " The
offenders condemned and accused for witchcraft with their markes
at their attainder a list of these alleged Lancashire witches
(cf. Gardiner's History of England, ch. lxxiii.). f. 199.
Paper (except ff. 110-112); ff. 197. XVI.-XVII. centt. The magical
part of Lord Somers' library was in the moiety which passed to
Sir Joseph Jekyll and was sold in his sale 26 Feb. 173, where this
MS. (sale-cat., lot. 397) was purchased by Joseph Ames. Ames was
probably mistaken in identifying it (note on f. 4b) with a lot
bought by Christopher Bateman at the sale of Thomas Britton,
" the small-coal man," in 1694. At any rate it is not the principal
book described in that lot (sale-cat., MSS. no. 38). At Ames' sale,
1760, it was bought (lot 357) by Snelling for £2 4s. Bookplate of
arms of Henry White (sale-cat. 1902, lot 1408). Modern red
morocco binding. 12 1/4 in. x 8 1/4 in.

Edited By John J. Coughlin on 1084650835
John J. Coughlin
Site Admin
Posts: 231
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 8:12 pm
Location: NY

Postby John J. Coughlin » Mon May 17, 2004 12:37 pm


London, British Library: Additional MS. 36674. Magical treatises by Caius, Forman, Dee and Kelley, including 'Compendium Heptarchiae Mysticae' with some differences, notably a table attributing planets to the Filii Filiarum.
John J. Coughlin
Site Admin
Posts: 231
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 8:12 pm
Location: NY

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