The Evolution of Wiccan Ethics

King Who??

I apologize for not getting this paper out sooner - I am working on my second book and I have not had the time to piece my research together. Below are some messages I have received in response to my work which cover some very useful information on King Pausole. It is great to see others taking such an interest in researching these things since it is sadly lacking in most "authoritative" works on Wicca.

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The below letter from David R. Jones was compiled from his much more extensive paper which he was kind enough to share during my initial inquiries into the "Good King Pausol" reference made by Gerald Gardner.
From: David R. Jones (
Subject: Re: The Wiccan Rede: A Historical Journey (essay) 
Newsgroups: alt.pagan, alt.magick, alt.religion.wicca
Date: 2001-08-06

Do what thou wilt shall be the law.

A few more details regarding King Pausole.  I have the French original
[1], which has:

Code de Tryphême

I.	- Ne nuis pas à voisin.
II.	- Ceci bien compris, fais ce qu'il te plaît. (p. 14)

and the Lumley translation [2].   Now Lumley (p. 16) translates this

Code of Tryphemiz

I.	Thou shalt not harm thy neighbor
II.	This being understood, do as you wouldst.

Now my poor French agrees with the first point, but the "wouldst" of
point II. seems fairly weak for "plaît."  which should be more like
what one "likes" or "pleases," which would make point II. something
like: "This being understood, do as you please" or ". . . do as you

Another occurrence (occasionally erroneously cited as a non Crowley
source for the Gnostic Mass elements in Wicca) is the parody of Liber
15 (cap 22: "As to a Veil They Broke") in James Branch Cabell's
(1879-1958) Jurgen: [3]

Anaïtis answered: "There is no law in Cocaigne save, Do that which
seems good to you."
Then said the naked children: "Perhaps it is the law, (p. 156)

Cabell corresponded with Crowley and was heavily influenced by the
French farcical fantasies of which Pausole is indicative and which
Cabell's works are conscious stylistic imitations.

P.S. It is also interesting to note that the Ella Wheeler Wilcox who
Gardner quotes in The Meaning of Witchcraft, in the context of the
ethics of Witchcraft, was one of the founders of modern Rosicrucianism
[4] in America, an associate of Spencer Lewis's and one of the first
officers of AMORC.  Considering GBG's involvement with various
Rosicrucian orders (cf. Heselton and Hutton) and the relationship
between AMORC and O.T.O. this is quite interesting.


1.  Louÿs, Pierre. Les Aventures Du Roi Pausole. Paris: Albin Michel,
2.  Louÿs, Pierre. The Adventures of King Pausole. trans. Charles H.
Lumley, illus. Beresford Egan.  New York: William Godwin, 1933.
3.  Cabell, James Branch. Jurgen: a Comedy of Justice. New York: R.M.
McBride & Company, 1922, c1919.
4.  Palo, Dr. John. "Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919): Writer and
Mystic Rosicrucian." Rosicrucian Library.

From: Kate Slater  
To: jcoughlin (at) 
Subject: King Pausole 
Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2001 

Hello Mr. Coughlin
I discovered your Rede timeline via a search on Louys through Mama-
It's very good!
I started out several years ago trying to locate Gardener's quote and have
turned up tidbits ever since. One factor is that Louys' book, written 1901,
translated 1919 (something you had that I didn't) was not only a popular
operetta but became a film in France. Les Adventures du roi Pausole, Eden
Roc, 1932

And the Operetta was 1930.
Gardner was still in Malaya in the early 30s, I think, but Pausole was
becoming part of pop culture- I'm trying to think of a vaguely naughty
character of our time that would be equivalent- but in our era what comes to
mind is the actors' private lives, not those of literary characters-
illustrating, perhaps, how much our general morality has moved in the
direction of the rede.

I'll be very interested in your essay.


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