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Sixth and Seventh Books of Moses (hc) by Joseph Peterson


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Of all the popular handbooks of magic, The Sixth and Seventh Books of Moses is perhaps the most influential. It has become quite important in American folk magic, being extensively used by Penssylvania Dutch hexmeisters, Hoodoo practitioners, African-American root workers, withes of various sorts, and rural Germans and Swiss among others. It is also widely used by practitioners of obeah (folk magic of the West Indies), as well as West Africa. Gerald Gardner, arguably the founder of modern Wicca, owned a copy. Why is it so popular? One reason may be its claim of biblical roots. Another is undoubtedly its sinister reputation. Folklorists have collected many reports of its successful use, but frequently practitioners are claimed to have become ensnared by it. A glance through the pages tend to support the view that an evil magic pervades it, with plague spells and the sinister Faustian materials. Constantly alluded to in popular European tradition as diabolical writings, it has the reputation of being powerful but evil in American folklore as well. Yet others believe it was designed to counteract the Black Bible, a Satan-inspired book, and that Moses delivered the Sixth and Seventh Books to provide protection from the hexes of a witch. Here Peterson constructs this edition by reviewing all of the previous editions and comparing them for consistency, clarity, and deviations. Chapters included in one edition, but missing in others, are bound together for completeness. Extensive endnotes, commentary, and introductory material place the Sixth and Seventh Books of Moses in their historical context, as well as give meaning to what was previously barely decipherable material, making this edition a more comprehensive and more easily understood version of the ever-popular writings.

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