Grimoire of Honorius

Grimoire of HonoriusGrimoire of Honorius : Also called the Constitution of Honorius, this text may have been authored in the 16th century but was first published in Rome in 1629. It gained wide circulation during the 17th century. The authorship is attributed to Pope Honorius III (r. 1216–27), who is credited with rites of exorcism. The book shows influences from the Lemegeton and claims to be based on the practical Kabbalah, but this connection is tenuous.

Rather, it is the only grimoire to introduce significant Christian elements, which earned it the reputation of the blackest of black magic texts. The grimoire is cast as a papal bull in which the pope decrees that the authorities of the church, from cardinals to secular clerks, should have the power of invoking and commanding spirits of all sorts. This power had been vested with the papal office as the successor to St. Peter.

The rituals in Honorius combine kabbalistic elements such as the 72 sacred names of God and Christian elements such as confessions, litanies, masses of the Holy Ghost and angels, the office of the dead, the GOSPEL OF JOHN, and various prayers with gruesome sacrifices of animals. The effect is more like a Black Mass than anything sacred.

The 1670 edition of Honorius includes a rite of exorcism for both humans and animals. The 1800 edition calls for using holy water in human exorcisms. In animal possessions, it prescribes the use of salt exorcized with Blood drawn from a bewitched animal.

As a magical text, it is viewed as having little foundation and probably was written for commercial appeal. It is not to be confused with The Sworn Book of Honorius, credited to the authorship of Honorius of Thebes, master magician. Waite said that the grimoire “must be avoided, were it necessary at the present day to warn anyone against practices to which no one is likely to resort, which belong to the foolish mysteries of old exploded doctrines, and are interesting assuredly, but only as curiosities of the past.”

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