Discusses the two most important figures in early Jewish mythologies of evil, the fallen angels Azazel and Satanael.
Dark Mirrors is a wide-ranging study of two central figures in early Jewish demonology—the fallen angels Azazel and Satanael. Andrei A. Orlov explores the mediating role of these paradigmatic celestial rebels in the development of Jewish demonological traditions from Second Temple apocalypticism to later Jewish mysticism, such as that of the Hekhalot and Shi’ur Qomah materials. Throughout, Orlov makes use of Jewish pseudepigraphical materials in Slavonic that are not widely known.
Orlov traces the origins of Azazel and Satanael to different and competing mythologies of evil, one to the Fall in the Garden of Eden, the other to the revolt of angels in the antediluvian period. Although Azazel and Satanael are initially representatives of rival etiologies of corruption, in later Jewish and Christian demonological lore each is able to enter the other’s stories in new conceptual capacities. Dark Mirrors also examines the symmetrical patterns of early Jewish demonology that are often manifested in these fallen angels’ imitation of the attributes of various heavenly beings, including principal angels and even God himself.
“…an engaging examination of the two most infamous characters of Second Temple Jewish demonology, the fallen angels Satan and Azazel … Dark Mirrors will be of interest to students of the scriptures and especially those interested in religious history, whether or not they have prior experience with the early Jewish and early Christian texts he utilizes. The many parallels with LDS understandings of the nature of Satan should be apparent and exciting for most. Orlov is one of the foremost scholars on this genre of extrabiblical texts and much can be gleaned from his adventurous and insightful approach.” — BYU Studies Quarterly
“Orlov has succeeded in producing a well-written and closely argued account that will serve as a fine resource in early Jewish and Christian literature for years to come.” — H-Net Reviews, H-Judaic
“Andrei Orlov [has] made a name for himself in the academic world by studying rarely examined Jewish pseudo-epigraphic works that have come down to us in Slavonic … Recommended for academic collections.” — Association of Jewish Libraries Reviews
Andrei A. Orlov is Associate Professor of Theology at Marquette University. He is the author of several books, including Selected Studies in the Slavonic Pseudepigrapha.