A Corpus of Magic Bowls: Incantation Texts in Jewish Aramaic from Late Antiquity

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Kegan Paul, 2003 - Religion - 223 pages
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This book is a unique collection of Jewish magical texts from Late Antiquity. These consist of spells for protection against a wide variety of supernatural entities, demons, ghouls, and ghosts that were thought to be the cause of humanity's misfortunes. Texts in this collection include spells for the protection of the unborn and new-born baby and for warding off afflictions of the region of the head and belly, evil spirits in general, and human enemies. The magic bowls from which the incantations in this book have been transcribed are a form of amulet which was peculiar to the Mesopotamian regions of modern day Iran and Iraq of the fourth to seventh centuries A.D. These magical texts were individually commissioned by people whose names are usually mentioned within the texts. After having been written by sorcerer -scribes on the inside of earthenware bowls these were buried upside down under the floor of the client's house. These texts are an early testament to Jewish magical textual traditions, elements of which can be traced throughout history to modern-day practices. Levene's book makes available new and exciting material from an area of which little has been published so far.

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Contents

Introduction
1
Texts Transcriptions Translations Notes and Synopses
31
Glossary
139
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Dan Levene is a lecturer in Jewish history and culture in the Department of History at Southhampton University.

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