NECROMANCY: Or divination by means of the spirits of the dead, from the Greek work `nekos', dead; and `manteria', divination. It is through its Italian form nigromancia that it came to be known as the "Black Art". With the Greeks it originally signified the descent into Hades in order to consult the dead rather than summoning the dead into the mortal sphere again. The art is of almost universal usage. Considerable difference of opinion exists among modern adepts as to the exact methods to be properly pursued in the necromantic art, and it must be borne in mind the necromancy, which in the Middle Ages was called sorcery, shades into modern spiritualistic practice. There is no doubt, however, that necromancy is the touchstone of occultism, for if, after careful preparation the adept can carry through to a successful issue, the raising of the soul from the other world, he has proved the value of his art. It would be fruitless in this place to enter into a psychological discussion as to whether the feat is possible of accomplishment or not, and we will confine ourselves tit he material which has been placed at our disposal by the sages of the past, who have left full details as to how the process should be approached.
In the case of a compact between the conjurer and the devil, no ceremony is necessary, as the familiar is ever at hand to do the behest of his masters. This, however, is never the case with the true sorcerer, who preserves his independence, and trusts to his profound knowledge of the art and his powers of command; his object therefore is to 'constrain' some spirit to appear before him, and to guard himself from the danger of provoking such beings. The magician, it must be understood, always has an assistant, and every article named is prepared according to rules well known in the black art. In the first place, they are to fix upon a spot proper for such purpose; which must be either in a subterraneous vault, hung around with black, and lighted by a magical torch; or else in the center of some thick wood or desert, or upon some extensive, unfrequented plain, where several roads meet, or amidst the ruins of ancient castles, abbeys, monasteries, etc., or amongst the rocks on the sea shore, in some private detached churchyard, or any other solemn, melancholy place between the hours of twelve and one in the night, either when the moon shines very bright, or else when the elements are disturbed with storms, thunder, lightning, wind, and rain; for, in these places, times, and seasons, it is contended that spirits can with less difficulty manifest themselves to mortal eyes, and continue visible with the least pain, in this elemental external world.
When the proper time and place is fixed on, a magic circle is to be formed, within which, the master and his associate are carefully to retire. The dimensions of the circle are as follow: - A piece of ground is usually chosen, nine feet square, at the full extent of which parallel lines are drawn within the other, having sundry crosses and triangles described between them, close to which is formed the first or outer circle, then, about half-a-foot within the same, a second circle is described, and within that another square correspondent to the first, the center of which is the seat of spot where the master and associate are to be placed. "The vacancies formed by the various lines and angles of the figure are filled up with the holy names of God, having crosses and triangles described between them. The reason assigned by magicians and others for this institution and use of circles, is, that so much ground being blessed and consecrated by such holy words and ceremonies as they make use of forming it, hath a secret force to expel all evil spirits from the bounds thereof, and, being sprinkled with pure, sanctified water, the ground is purified from all uncleanliness; besides, the holy names of God being written over every part of it, its force becomes so powerful that no evil spirit hath ability to break through it, or to get at the magician and his companion, by reason of the antipathy in nature they bear to these sacred names. And the reason given for the triangles is, that if the spirit be not easily brought to speak the truth, they may by the exorcist be conjured to enter the same, where, by virtue of the names of the essence and divinity of God, they can speak nothing but what is true and right. The circle, therefore, according to this account of it, is the principal fort and shield of the magician, from which he is not, at the peril of his life, to depart, till he has completely dismissed the spirit, particularly if he be of a fiery or infernal nature. Instances are recorded of many who perished by the means, particularly Chiancungi, the famous Egyptian fortune-teller, who was so famous in England in the seventeenth century. He undertook a wager, to raise up the spirit "Bokim", and having described the circle, he seated his sister Napula by him as his associate. After frequently repeating the forms of exorcism, and calling upon the spirit to appear, and nothing as yet answering his demand, they grew impatient of the business, and quitted the circle, but it cost them their lives; for they were instantaneously seized and crushed to death by that infernal spirit, who happened not to be sufficiently constrained till that moment, to manifest himself to human eyes."
There was a prescribed form of consecrating the magic circle, which we omit as unnecessary in a general illustration. The proper attire or "pontificalibus" of a magician is an ephod made of fine white linen, over that a priestly robe of black bombazine, reaching to the ground, with the two seals of the earth drawn correctly upon virgin parchment, and affixed to the breast of the outer vestment. Round his waist is tied a broad consecrated girdle, with the names Ya, Ya, - Aie, Aaie, - Elibra, - Sadai, - Pah Adonai, - tuo robore, - Cintus sum. Upon his shoes must be written Tetragammaton, with crosses round about; upon his head a high-crowned cap of sable silk, and in his hand a Holy Bible, printed or written in pure Hebrew. Thus attired, and standing within the charmed circle, the magician repeats the awful form of exorcism; and presently, the infernal spirits make strange and frightening noises, howlings, tremblings, flashes, and most dreadful shrieks and yells, as a forerunner of their becoming visible. Their first appearance in the form of fierce and terrible lions or tigers, vomiting forth fire, and roaring hideously about the circle; all which time the exorcist must not suffer any tremor of dismay; for, in that case, they will gain the ascendancy, and the consequences may touch his life. On the contrary, he must summon up a share of resolution, and continue repeating the forms of constriction and confinement, until they are drawn nearer to the influence of the triangle, when their forms will change to appearances less ferocious and frightful, and become more submissive and tractable. When the forms of conjuration have in this manner been sufficiently repeated, the spirits forsake their bestial shapes, and enter the human form, appearing like naked men of gentle countenance and behavior, yet is the magician to be warily on his guard that they deceive him not by much wild gestures, for they are exceedingly fraudulent and deceitful in their dealings with those who constrain them to appear without compact, having nothing in view but to suborn his mind, or accomplish his destruction. With great care also must the spirit be discharged after the ceremony is finished, as he has answered all the demands made upon him. The magician must wait patiently till he has passed through all the terrible forms which announce his coming, and only when the last shriek has died away, after every trace of fire and brimstone has disappeared, may he leave the circle and depart home in safety. IF the ghost of deceased person is to be raised, the grave must be resorted to at midnight, and a different form of conjuration is necessary. Still another, is the infernal sacrament for "any corpse that hath hanged, drowned, or otherwise made away with itself"; and in this case the conjurations are performed over the body, which will at last rise, and standing upright, answer with a faint and hollow voice the questions that are put to it.
Eliphas Levi, in his `Ritual of Transcendent Magic' says that "evocations should always have a motive and a becoming end, otherwise the are works of darkness and folly, dangerous for health and reason." The permissible motive of an evocation may be either love or intelligence. Evocations of love require less apparatus and are in every respect easier. The procedure is as follows: "We must, in the first place, carefully collect the memorials of him (or her) whom we desire to behold, the articles he used, and on which his impressions remains; we must also prepare an apartment in which the person lived, or otherwise, one of similar kind, and place his portrait veiled in white therein, surrounded with his favorite flowers, which must be renewed daily. A fixed date must then be observed, either the birthday of the person, or that day which was most fortunate for his and our own affection, one of which we may believe that his soul, however blessed elsewhere, cannot lose the remembrance; this must be the day for the evocation and we must provide for it during the space of fourteen days. Throughout this period we must refrain from extending to anyone the same proofs of affection which we have the right to expect from the dead; we must observe strict chastity, live in retreat, and take only modest and light collation daily. Every evening at the same hour we must shut ourselves in the chamber consecrated to the memory of the lamented person, using only one small light, such as that of a funeral lamp or taper. This light should be placed behind us, the portrait should be uncovered and we should remain before it for an hour, in silence; finally, we should fumigate the apartment with a little good incense, and go out backwards. On the morning of the day fixed for the evocation, we should adorn ourselves as if for a festival, not salute anyone first, make but a single repast of bread, wine, and roots, or fruits; the cloth should be white, two covers should be laid, and one portion of the bread broken should be set aside; a little wine should also be placed in the glass of the person we design to invoke. The meal must be eaten alone in the chamber of evocations, and in the presence of the veiled portrait; it must be all cleared away at the end, except the glass belonging to the dead person, and his portion of bread, which must be placed before the portrait. In the evening, at the hour for the regular visit, we must repair in silence to the chamber, light a fire of cypress wood, and cast incense seven times thereon, pronouncing the name of the person whom we desire to behold. The lamp must then be extinguished, and the fire permitted to die out. On this day the portrait must not be unveiled. When the flame is extinct, put more incense on the ashes, and invoke God according to the forms of the religion to which the dead person belonged, and according to the ideas which he himself possessed of God. While making this prayer we must identify ourselves with the evoked person, speak as he spoke, believe in a sense as he believed; then, after a silence of fifteen minutes, we must speak to him as if he were present, with affection and with faith, praying him to manifest to us. Renew this prayer mentally, covering the face with both hands; then call him thrice with a loud voice; tarry on our knees, the eyes closed and covered, for some minutes; then call again thrice upon him in a sweet and affectionate tone, and slowly open the eyes. Should nothing result, the same experiment must be renewed in the following year, and if necessary a third time, when it is certain that the desired apparition will be obtained, and the longer it has been delayed the more realistic and striking it will be.
"Evocations of knowledge and intelligence are made with more solemn ceremonies. If concerned with a celebrated personage, we must meditate for twenty-one days upon his life and writings, form an idea of his appearance, converse with him mentally, and imagine his answers; carry his portrait, or at least his name, about us; follow a vegetable diet for twenty-one days, and a severe fast during the last seven. We must next construct the magical oratory. This oratory must be invariably darkened; but if we operate in the daytime, we may leave a narrow aperture on the side where the sun will shine at the hour of the evocation, and place a triangular prism before the opening, and a crystal globe, filled with water, before the prism. If the operation be arranged for the night the magic lamp must be so placed that its single ray shall be upon the alter smoke. The purpose of the preparations is to furnish the magic agent with elements of corporeal appearance, and to ease as much as possible the tension of imagination, which could not be exalted without danger into the absolute illusion of dream. for the rest, it will be easily understood that a beam of sunlight, or the ray of a lamp, colored variously, and falling upon curling and irregular smoke, can in no way create a perfect image. The chafing-dish containing the sacred fire should be in the center of the oratory, and the alter of perfumes close by. The operator must turn toward the east to pray, and the west to invoke; he must be either alone or assisted by two persons preserving the strictest silence; he must wear the magical vestments, which we have described in the seventh chapter (of Levi`s "Ritual of Transcendent Magic"), and must be crowned with vervain and gold. He should bathe before the operation, and all his under garments must be of the most intact and scrupulous cleanliness. The ceremony should begin with a prayer suited to the genius of the spirit about to be invoked and one which would be approved by him if he still lived. For example, it would be impossible to evoke Voltaire by reciting prayers in the style of St. Bridget. For the great men of antiquity, we may see the hymns of Cleathes or Orpheus, with the adjuration terminating the Golden Venus of Pythagoras. In our own evocation of Apollonius, we used the magical philosophy of Patricius for the ritual, containing the doctrines of Zoroaster and the writings of Hermes Trismegistus. We recited the Nuctemeron of Apollonius in greek with a loud voice and added the following conjuration:-
"Vouchsafe to be present, O Father of All, and thou Thrice Mighty Hermes, Conductor of the dead. Asclepius son of Hephaistus, Patron of the Healing Art; and thou Osiris, Lord of strength a vigor, do thou thyself be present too. Arnebascenis, Patron of Philosophy, and yet again Asclepius, son of Imuthe, who presidest over poetry.
"Apollonius, Apollonius, Apollonius, Thou teachest the Magic of Zoroaster, son of Oromasdes; and this is the worship of the Gods."
For the evocation of spirits belonging to religions issued from Judaism, the following kabalistic invocation of Solomon should be used, either in Hebrew, or in any other tongue with which the spirit in question is known to have been familiar:-
"Powers of the Kingdom, be ye under my left foot and in my right hand! Glory and eternity, take me by the two shoulders, and direct me in the paths of victory! Mercy and Justice, be ye the equilibrium and splendor of my life! Intelligence and Wisdom, crown me! Spirits of Malchuth, lead me betwixt the two pillars upon which rests the whole edifice of the temple! Angels of Netsah and Hod, strengthen me upon the cubic stone of Jesod! O Gedulael! O Geburael! O Tiphereth! Binael, be thou my love! Ruach Hochmael, be thou my light! Be that which thou are and thou shall be, O Ketheriel! Tschim, assist me in the name of Saddai! Cherubim, be my strength in the name of Adonai! Beni-Elohim, be my brethren in the name of the Son, and by the power of Zebaoth! Eloim, do battle for me in the name of Tetragrammation! Malachim, protect me in the name of Jod He Vau He! Seraphim, cleanse my love in the name of Elvoh! Hasmalim, enlighten me with the splendors of Eloi and Shechinah! Aralim, act! Orphanim, revolve and shine! Hajoth a Kadosh, cry, speak, roar, bellow! Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh, Saddai, Adonia, Jotchavah, Eieazereie: Hallelu-jah, Hallelu-jah, Hallelu-jah. Amen.
It should be remembered above all, in conjurations, that the names of Satan, Beelzebub, Adramelek, and others do not designate spiritual unities, but legions of impure spirits.
"Our name is legion, and we are many" says the spirit of darkness in the Gospel. Number constitutes the law, and progress takes place inversely in Hell - that is to say, the most advanced in Satanic development, and consequently the most degraded, are the least intelligent and feeblest. Thus, a fatal law drives the demons downward when they wish and believe themselves to be ascending. So also those who term themselves chiefs are the most impotent and despised of all. As to the horde of perverse spirits, they tremble before the unknown, invisible, incomprehensible, capricious, implacable chief, who never explains his law, whose arm is ever stretched out to strike those who fail to understand him. They give this phantom the names of Baal, Jupiter, and even others more venerable, which cannot, without profanation, be pronounced in Hell. But this phantom is only a shadow and remnant of God, disfigured by their willful perversity, and persisting in their imagination like a vengeance of justice and a remorse of truth.
"When the evoked spirit of light manifests with dejected or irritated countenance, we must offer him a moral sacrifice, that is, be inwardly disposed to renounce whatever offends him; and before leaving the oratory, we must dismiss him, saying: "May peace be with thee! I have not wished to trouble thee; do thou torment me not. I shall labor to improve myself as to anything that vexes thee. I pray, and will still pray, with thee and for thee. Pray thou also both with and for me, and return to thy great slumber, expecting that day when we shall wake together. Silence and adieu."
Christian, in his "Historie de le Magic" (Paris, 1871) says: "The place chosen for the evocation is not an unimportant point. The most auspicious is undoubtedly that room which contains the last traces of the lamented person. If it be impossible to fulfill this condition, we must go in search of some isolated and rural retreat which corresponds in orientation and aspect, as well as measurement, with the mortuary chamber.
"The window must be blocked with boards if olive wood, hermetically joined, so that no exterior light may penetrate. The ceiling, the four interior walls, and the floor must be draped with tapestry of emerald green silk, which the operator must secure himself with copper nails, invoking no assistance from strange hands, because, from this moment, he alone may enter into this spot set apart from all, the arcane Oratory of the Magus. The furniture which belonged to the deceased, his favorite possessions and trinkets, the things on which his final glance may be supposed to have rested - all these things must be assiduously collected and arranged in the order which they occupied at the time of his death. If none of these souvenirs can be obtained, a faithful likeness of the departed being must be procured, it must be depicted in the dress and colors which he wore during the last period of his life. This portrait must be set up on the eastern wall by means of copper fasteners, must be covered with a veil of white silk, and must be surmounted with a crown of those flowers which were most lived by the deceased.
"Before the portrait there must be erected an alter of white marble, supported by four columns which must terminate in bull's feet. A five pointed star must be emblazoned on the slab of the alter, and must be composed of pure copper plates. The place in the center of the star, between the plates, must be large enough to receive the pedestal of a cup-shaped copper chafing-dish, containing desiccated fragments of laurel wood and alder. By the side of the chafing-dish must be placed a censer full of incense. The skin of a white and spotless ram must be stretched beneath the alter, and on it emblazoned another pentagram prawn with parallel lines of azure blue, golden yellow, emerald green and purple red.
" A copper tripod must be erected in the middle of the Oratory; it must be perfectly triangular in form, it must be surmounted by another and similar chafing-dish, which must likewise contain a quantity of dried olive wood.
" A high candelabrum of copper must be placed by the wall on the southern side, and must contain a single taper of purest white wax, which must alone illuminate the mystery of the evocation.
"The white color of the alter, of the ram's skin, and of the veil, in consecrated to Gabriel, the planetary archangel of he moon, and the Genius of mysteries; the green of the copper and tapestries is dedicated to the Genius of Venus.
"The alter and tripod must both be encompassed by a magnetized iron chain, and by three garlands composed of the foliage and blossoms of the myrtle, the olive, and the rose.
"Finally, facing the portrait, and on the eastern side there must be a canopy, also draped with emerald silk, and supported by two triangular columns of olive wood, plated with purest copper. On the north and south sides, between the each of these columns and the wall, the tapestry must fall in long folds to the ground, forming a kind of tabernacle; which must be open on the eastern side. At the foot of each column there must be a sphinx of white marble, with a cavity in the top of the head to receive spices for burning. It is beneath this canopy that the apparitions will manifest, and it should be remembered the Magus must turn to the east for prayer, and to the west for evocation.
"Before entering this little sanctuary, devoted to remembrance, the operator must be clothed in a vestment of azure, fastened by clasps of copper, enriched with a single emerald. He must wear upon his head a tiara surrounded by a floriated circle of twelve emeralds, and a crown of violets. On his breast must be the talisman of Venus depending from a ribbon of azure silk. On the annular finger of his left hand must be a copper ring containing turquoise. His feet must be covered with shoes of azure silk, and he must be provided with a fan of swan's feathers to dissipate, if needful, the smoke of the perfumes.
"The Oratory and all its objects must be consecrated on a Friday, during the hours which are set apart to the Genius of Venus. This consecration is performed by burning violets and roses in a fire if olive wood. A shaft must be provided in the oratory for the passage of the smoke, but care must be taken to prevent the admission of light through this channel.
"When the preparations are finished, the operator must impose on himself a retreat of one-and-twenty days, beginning on the anniversary of the death of the beloved being. During this period he must refrain from conferring on anyone the least of those marks of affection which he was accustomed to bestow on the departed; he must be absolutely chaste, alike in deed and thought; he must take daily but one repast, consisting of bread, wine, roots, and fruits. These three conditions are indispensable to success in evocation, and their accomplishment requires complete isolation.
"Every day, shortly before midnight, the Magus must assume his consecrated dress. On the stroke of the mystic hour, he must enter the Oratory, bearing a lighted candle in his right hand, and in the other an hour-glass. The candle must be fixed in the candelabra, and the hour-glass on the alter to register the flight of time. The operator must then proceed to replenish the garland and the floral crown. Then he shall unveil the portrait, and erect it immovable in front of the alter, being thus with his face to the east, he shall softly go over in his mind the cherished recollections he possesses of the beloved and departed being.
"When the upper reservoir of the hour-glass is empty the time of contemplation will be over. By the flame of the taper the operator must then kindle the laurel wood and alder in the chafing-dish which stands on the alter; then, taking a pinch of incense from the censer, let him cast it thrice upon the fire, repeating the following words:- ~Glory be to the Father of life universal in the splendor of the infinite altitude, and peace in the twilight of the immeasurable depths to all spirits of good will !"
"Then he shall cover the portrait, and taking up his candle in his hand, shall depart from the Oratory, walking backward at a slow pace as far as the threshold. The same ceremony must be fulfilled at the same hour during every day of the retreat, and at each visits the crown which is above the portrait, and the garlands of the alter and tripod must be burnt each evening in a room adjoining the Oratory.
"When the twenty-first day has arrived, the Magus must do his best to have no communication with any one, but if this be impossible, he must not be the first to speak, and must postpone all business till the morrow. On the stroke of noon, he must arrange a small circular table in the Oratory, and cover it with a new napkin of unblemished whiteness. It must be garnished with two copper chalices, an entire loaf, and a crystal flagon of the purest white. The bread must be broken and not cut, and the wine emptied in equal portions into the two cups. Half of this mystic communion, which must be his sole nourishment on this supreme day, shall be offered by the operator to the dead, and by the light of the one taper he must eat his own share, standing before the veiled portrait. Then he shall retire as before, walking backward as far as the threshold, and leaving the ghost's share of bread and wine upon the table.
"When the solemn hour of the evening has at length arrived the Magus shall carry into the Oratory some well-dried cypress wood, which he shall set alight in the alter and the tripod. Three pinches of incense shall be cast into the flame in honor of the Supreme Potency which manifests itself by Ever Active Intelligence and by Absolute Wisdom. When the wood of the two chafing-dishes has been reduced to embers, he must renew the triple offering of incense on the alter, and must cast some seven times on the fire in the tripod; at each evaporation of the consecrated perfume he must repeat the previous doxology, and then turning tot he East, he must call upon God by prayer of that religion which was professed by the person whom he desires to evoke.
"When the prayers are over he must reverse his position and with his face to the West, must enkindle the chafing-dishes on the head of each sphinx, and when the cypress is full ablaze he must heap over it well dried violets and roses. Then let him extinguish the candle which illuminates the Oratory, and falling on his knees before the canopy, between the two columns, let him mentally address the beloved person with a plenitude of faith and affection. Let him solemnly entreat it to appear and renew this interior adjuration seven times, under the auspices of the seven providential Genii, and endeavoring during the whole of the time to exalt his soul above the natural weakness of humanity.
"Finally, the operator, with closed eyes, and hands covering his face, must call the invoked person in a loud but gentle voice, pronouncing three times all of the names which he bore.
"Some moments after the third appeal, he must extend his arms in the form of a cross, and lifting up his eyes, he will behold the beloved being, in a recognizable manner, in front of him. That is to say, he will perceive that ethereal substance separated from the perishable terrestrial body, the fluid envelope of the soul, which Kabalistic initiates have termed the `Perispirit'. This substance preserves the human form but is emancipated from human infirmities, and is energized by the special characteristics whereby the imperishable individuality of our essence is manifested.
"The departed soul will give counsel to the operator; it will occasionally reveal secrets which may be beneficial to those whom it loved on earth, but it will answer no question which has reference to the desires of the flesh; it will discover no buried treasures, nor will it unveil the secrets of a third person; it is silent on the mysteries of the superior existence to which it has now attained. In certain cases, it will, however, declare itself either happy or in punishment. If it be the latter, it will ask for the prayer of the Magus, or for some religious observance, which we must unfailingly fulfill. Lastly, it will indicate the time when the evocation may be renewed.
"When it has disappeared, the operator must turn to the East, rekindle the fire on the alter, and make a final offering of incense. Then he must detach the crown and the garlands, take up his candle, and retire with his face to the West till he is out of the Oratory. His last duty is to burn the final remains of the flowers and leaves. Their ashes, united to those which have been collected during the time of retreat, must be mixed with myrtle seeds, and secretly buried in a field at a depth which will secure it from disturbance of the ploughshare."
The last two examples are, of course, those of "white" necromancy. The procedure followed by savage tribes as of course totally different. Among certain Australian tribes the necromants are called Birraark. It is said that a Birraark was supposed to be initiated by the "mrarts" (ghosts) when they met him wandering in the bush. It was from the ghosts that he obtained replies to questions concerning events passing t a distance, or yet to happen, which might be of interest or moment to his tribe. An account of a spiritual seance in the bush is given in "Kamilaroi and Kurnai" (p. 251): The fires were let down; the Birraark uttered the cry "Coo-ee" at intervals. At length a distant reply was heard, and shortly afterwards, the sound as of persons jumping on the ground in succession. A voice was then heard in the gloom asking in a strange intonation "What is wanted?" At the termination of the seance, the spirit voice said "We are going." Finally, the Birraark was found in the top of an almost inaccessible tree, apparently asleep.
In Japan, ghosts can be raised in various ways. One mode is to "put
into an andon" (a paper lantern in a flame), "a hundred rushlights, and repeat an incantation of a hundred lines. One of these rushlights is taken out at the end of each line, and the would-be ghost-seer then goes out in the dark with one light still burning, and blows it out, when their ghost ought to appear. Girls who have lost their lovers by death often try that sorcery."
The mode of procedure as practiced in Scotland was thus. The haunted room was made ready. He , "who was to do the daring deed, about nightfall entered the room, bearing with him a table, a chair, a candle, a compass, a crucifix, if one could be got, and a Bible. With the compass he cat a circle on the middle of the floor, large enough to hold the chair and the table. He placed within the circle the chair and the table, and on the table he laid the Bible and the crucifix beside the lighted candle. If he had not a crucifix, then he drew the figure of a cross in the floor within the circle. When all this was done, he rested himself on the chair, opened the Bible, and waited for the coming of the spirit. Exactly at midnight the spirit came. Sometimes the door opened slowly, and there glided in noiselessly a lady sheeted in white, with a face of woe and told her story to the man on his asking her in the name of God what she wanted. What she wanted was done in the morning, and the spirit rested ever after. Sometimes the spirit rose from the floor, and sometimes came forth from the wall. There was one who burst into the room with a strong bound, danced wildly round the circle, and flourished a long whip round the man's head, but never dared to step into the circle. During a pause in his frantic dance he was asked, in God's name, what he wanted. He ceased his dance and told his wishes. His wishes were carried out, and the spirit was in peace."
In Wraxall`s "Memoirs of the Counts of Berlin, Dresden, Warsaw, and Vienna" there is an amusing account of the raising of the ghost of Chevalier de Saxe. Reports had been circulated that at his palace at Dresden there was secreted a large sum of money, and it was urged that if his spirit could be compelled to appear, interesting secrets could be extorted from him. Curiosity, combined with avarice, accordingly prompted his principal heir, Prince Charles, to try the experiment, and, on the appointed night, Schrepfer was the operator in raising the apparition. He commenced his proceedings by retiring into the corner of the gallery, where kneeling down with many mysterious ceremonies, he invoked the spirit to appear. At length, a loud clatter was heard at all the windows on the outside, resembling more the effect produced by a number of wet fingers drawn over the edge of glasses than anything else to which it could well be compared. The sound announced the arrival of the good spirits, and was shortly followed by a yell of a frightful and unusual nature. Schrepfer continued his invocations, when "the door suddenly opened with violence and something resembling a black ball or globe rolled into the room. It was enveloped in smoke or cloud, in the midst of which appeared a human face, like the countenance of the Chevalier de Saxe, from which issued a loud and angry voice, exclaiming in German,"Carl, was wollte du mit mich?" - "Charles, what would thou do with me?" By reiterated exorcisms Schrepfer finally dismissed the apparition, and the terrified spectators dispersed fully convinced of his magical powers.
This site has received 11888813 hits since Aug 4, 2000
The entire content of all public pages in The Pagan Library (graphics, text and HTML) are free information, released under the terms of the GPL. All copyrighted items mentioned are the property of their respective owners, and no form of ownership or endorsement is implied.
Last modified: June 12 2016 13:22:37