Magic in the Middle Ages

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Cambridge University Press, May 1, 2000 - History - 219 pages
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"This textbook deals with magic, both natural and demonic, within the broad context of medieval culture. Covering the years c. 500 to 1500, with a chapter on antiquity, it invesigates the way magic relates to the many other cultural forms of the time, such as religion and science, literature and art. The book begins with a full discussion of the social history of magic and of the ways in which magical beliefs borrowed from a diversity of cultures. Thereafter, within a wider study of the growth and development of the phenomenon, the author shows how magic served as a point of contact between the popular and elite classes, how the reality of beliefs is reflected the fiction of medieval literature, and how the persecution of magic and witchcraft led to changes in the law. The chapter on necromancy is the most original, based largely on unpublished manuscripts and arguing for a new interpretation of the material. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach Professor Kieckhefer has taken magic from its cultural isolation and placed it firmly at the crossroads of medieval culture, as a focal point for our understanding of many other aspects of medieval history." --Publisher description.
 

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Contents

INTRODUCTION MAGIC AS A CROSSROADS
1
TWO CASE STUDIES
2
DEFINITIONS OF MAGIC
8
PLAN FOR THIS BOOK
17
THE CLASSICAL INHERITANCE
19
SCIENTIFIC AND PHILOSOPHICAL LITERATURE
21
FICTIONAL LITERATURE
29
THE BIBLE AND BIBLICAL APOCRYPHA
33
AUTOMATONS AND GEMS
100
MAGIC IN THE ROMANCES AND RELATED LITERATURE
105
ARABIC LEARNING AND THE OCCULT SCIENCES
116
THE TRANSFORMATIONS OF EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL LIFE
117
THE PRACTICE OF ASTROLOGY
120
PRINCIPLES OF ASTROLOGY
125
ASTRAL MAGIC
131
ALCHEMY
133

MAGIC EARLY CHRISTIANITY AND THE GRAECOROMAN WORLD
36
THE TWILIGHT OF PAGANISM MAGIC IN NORSE AND IRISH CULTURE
43
CONVERSION AND PAGAN SURVIVALS
44
RUNIC INSCRIPTIONS
47
THE NORSE SAGAS
48
IRISH LITERATURE
53
THE COMMON TRADITION OF MEDIEVAL MAGIC
56
HEALERS AND DIVINERS
57
HERBS AND ANIMALS
64
PRAYERS BLESSINGS AND ADJURATIONS
69
PROTECTIVE AMULETS AND TALISMANS
75
THE MISUSE OF MEDICAL AND PROTECTIVE MAGIC
80
DIVINATION AND POPULAR ASTROLOGY
85
THE ART OF TRICKERY
90
THE ROMANCE OF MAGIC IN COURTLY CULTURE
95
MAGICIANS AT COURT
96
THE CULT OF SECRECY AND BOOKS OF SECRETS
140
THE RENAISSANCE MAGUS
144
NECROMANCY IN THE CLERICAL UNDERWORLD
151
THE MAKING OF A CLERICAL UNDERWORLD
153
FORMULAS AND RITUALS FOR CONJURING SPIRITS
156
THE SOURCES FOR NECROMANCY
165
NECROMANCY IN THE EXEMPLA
172
PROHIBITION CONDEMNATION AND PROSECUTION
176
LEGAL PROHIBITION
177
MORAL AND THEOLOGICAL CONDEMNATION
181
PATTERNS OF PROSECUTION
187
THE RISE OF THE WITCH TRIALS
194
CONCLUSION
200
FURTHER READING
202
INDEX
214
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