Item Details

Demonolatry and Compendium Maleficarum (Two Volumes).

Secaucus, NJ: University Books, 1974. Reprint. Hardcover. A matching reprint set of these English language translations of two of the major early guides used by church and legal authorities to define and detect witchcraft and oversee its prosecution and punishment. The Compendium Maleficarum, compiled by the Ambrosian Friar Maria Guazzo, was printed in the Ambrosian College print shop in Milan (the first edition in 1608). This key work on demonology and witchcraft builds upon the already familiar content of its 15th and 16th century predecessors like Heinrich Kramer's Malleus Maleficarum (1487) and Nicholas Rémy's Daemonolatreiae libri tres (1595) with the inclusion of specifically placed and striking woodblock illustrations in the text. These cuts are repeated occasionally through the three books, which are formatted as a series of "Doctrina" and "Exempla", exploring the lore of European witchcraft practices with liberal references and examples from Kramer, Rémy and many others, both contemporary and from antiquity, often exploring supernatural causes to medical maladies. There is an extensive index of these citations. The sensational illustrations depict well dressed men and women in congress with various incarnations of a winged and tailed Devil, trampling the cross, giving to the Devil pieces of their clothing, striking their name from the book of life and inscribing it in the book of death. They also show women flying to the Sabbat on the back of a goat, the gathering of human remains for use in magical concoctions via exhumation or removal from the gallows, the consumption of a Sabbatic feasts, served and attended by non-human beings, a witch kissing the Devil's buttocks, and a depiction of a witch disguised as a wolf - Jane P. Davidson cites this as the only example of a 17th century witchcraft text to contain images of lycanthropy. The text was compiled at the request of Cardinal Federico Borromo, the Archbishop of Milan, perhaps prompted by Guazzo's performance of an exorcism in 1605 on the Duke Johan Wilhelm of Cleves. It was first translated into English in 1929 by Montague Summers.

An important late sixteenth century text on witchcraft "drawn from the capital trials of 900 persons, more or less, who within the last fifteen years have in Lorraine paid the penalty of death for the crime of witchcraft" by Nicholas Remy, 'Privy Councillor to the Most Serene Duke of Lorraine, and Public Advocate to his Duchy.' [D'Arch Smith B22]. These two works were the leading witchcraft handbooks of their day, and were the guides used by the authorities of the church and lawyers in the definition of witchcraft, and prosecution and punishment. A matching reprint set of Montague Summer's edition of these two early witch-hunter's guidebooks. Remy (1530-1612) French demonologist, studied law at the University of Toulouse, where Jean Bodin taught. He worked as a lawyer in Paris and in 1570 took over his uncle's position as Lieutenant General of Vosages. In 1575 he became the Privy Councilor to Duke Charles III of Lorraine, and in 1584 Seigneur de Rosieres-en Blois et du Breuil. In 1591 he became the Attorney General of Lorraine," in which position he was able to influence and override local magistrates too lenient with witches, keeping up his hatred of witches to the last. Remy's claims as an expert were emphasized by the title page wherein he boasted he had condemned 900 witches in fifteen years. Remy to some extant replaced the Malleus Maleficarum as the final authority on witch hunting," [Robbins.] From the introduction and includes new additional notes by leading occult and witchcraft author and scholar, Montague Summers: "No historical record could be more valuable, no record could be more interesting than this graphic account compiled from first-hand knowledge..." Although produced in several iterations, this is reprint set and is critical for religious studies, historical accounts of witchcraft and law, and Montague Summers focused collections. [Coumont: G.87.2. de Guaïta: 374. Caillet: 4805.]. Very Good+. Minimal bruising to top and end head caps, slightly darken top edge of text block, else a tight, clean, a very good set. Dust jackets minimally chafed and creased at all edges and extremities with a few light chips and short tears, price clipped. Two volume set bound in blue cloth with gilt titling and bright pink dust jackets intact, in mylar. Two volumes, xliv + 188pp. & xxii + 206pp. with illustrations and double column text. Item #10345

Price: $275.00