This collection of essays focuses on divination across the Ancient World from early Mesopotamia to late antiquity. The authors deal with the forms, theory and poetics of this important and still poorly understood ancient phenomenon.
magic and divination in the ancient world
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This volume contains a series of provocative essays that explore expressions of magic and ritual power in the ancient world. The strength of the present volume lies in the breadth of scholarly approaches represented. The book begins with several papyrological studies presenting important new texts in Greek and Coptic, continuing with essays focussing on taxonomy and definition. The concluding essays apply contemporary theories to analyses of specific test cases in a broad variety of ancient Mediterranean cultures. Paul Mirecki, Th.D. (1986) in Religious Studies, Harvard Divinity School, is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas. Marvin Meyer, Ph.D. (1979) in Religion, Claremont Graduate School, is Professor of Religion at Chapman University, Orange, California, and Director of the Coptic Magical Texts Project of the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity.
This publication is a detailed study of magical and divinatory practices in the Ancient Near East, particularly in Palestine and Syria. It combines the insights of the Old Testament with the data available from Phoenician and the older Ugaritic texts. It traces the links both historically and archaeologically.
Original and comprehensive, Magic in the Ancient Greek World takes the reader inside both the social imagination and the ritual reality that made magic possible in ancient Greece. Explores the widespread use of spells, drugs, curse tablets, and figurines, and the practitioners of magic in the ancient world Uncovers how magic worked. Was it down to mere superstition? Did the subject need to believe in order for it to have an effect? Focuses on detailed case studies of individual types of magic Examines the central role of magic in Greek life
The first English-language survey of ancient Greek divinatorymethods, Ancient Greek Divination offers a broad yetdetailed treatment of the earliest attempts by ancient Greeks toseek the counsel of the gods. Offers in-depth discussions of oracles, wandering diviners,do-it-yourself methods of foretelling the future, magicaldivinatory techniques, and much more Illustrates how the study of divination illuminates thementalities of ancient Greek religions and societies
Thanks to these generous donors for making the publication of the books in this series possible: Lloyd E. Cotsen; The Maurice Amado Foundation; National Endowment for the Humanities; and the National Foundation for Jewish Culture Tales from Arab Lands presents tales from North Africa, Yemen, Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq in the latest volume of the most important collection of Jewish folktales ever published. This is the third book in the multi-volume series in the tradition of Louis Ginzberg?s timeless classic, Legends of the Jews. The tales here and the others in this series have been selected from the Israel Folktale Archives (IFA), named in Honor of Dov Noy, at The University of Haifa, a treasure house of Jewish lore that has remained largely unavailable to the entire world until now. Since the creation of the State of Israel, the IFA has collected more than 20,000 tales from newly arrived immigrants, long-lost stories shared by their families from around the world. The tales come from the major ethno-linguistic communities of the Jewish world and are representative of a wide variety of subjects and motifs, especially rich in Jewish content and context. Each of the tales is accompanied by in-depth commentary that explains the tale's cultural, historical, and literary background and its similarity to other tales in the IFA collection, and extensive scholarly notes. There is also an introduction that describes the culture and its folk narrative tradition, a world map of the areas covered, illustrations, biographies of the collectors and narrators, tale type and motif indexes, a subject index, and a comprehensive bibliography. Until the establishment of the IFA, we had had only limited access to the wide range of Jewish folk narratives. Even in Israel, the gathering place of the most wide-ranging cross-section of world Jewry, these folktales have remained largely unknown. Many of the communities no longer exist as cohesive societies in their representative lands; the Holocaust, migration, and changes in living styles have made the continuation of these tales impossible. This series is a monument to a rich but vanishing oral tradition. This series is a monument to a rich but vanishing oral tradition.
Much of the Old Testament seems strange to contemporary readers. However, as we begin to understand how ancient people viewed the world, the Old Testament becomes more clearly a book that stands within its ancient context as it also speaks against it. John Walton provides here a thoughtful introduction to the conceptual world of the ancient Near East. Walton surveys the literature of the ancient Near East and introduces the reader to a variety of beliefs about God, religion, and the world. In helpful sidebars, he provides examples of how such studies can bring insight to the interpretation of specific Old Testament passages. Students and pastors who want to deepen their understanding of the Old Testament will find this a helpful and instructive study.
This book greatly enhances our knowledge of the interrelationship of Greek religion & culture and the Ancient Near East by offering important analyses of Greek myths, divinities and terms like a ~magica (TM) and 'paradise', but also of the Greek contribution to the Christian notion of atonement.
Magic, miracles, daemonology, divination, astrology, and alchemy were the arcana mundi, the "secrets of the universe," of the ancient Greeks and Romans. In this path-breaking collection of Greek and Roman writings on magic and the occult, Georg Luck provides a comprehensive sourcebook and introduction to magic as it was practiced by witches and sorcerers, magi and astrologers, in the Greek and Roman worlds. In this new edition, Luck has gathered and translated 130 ancient texts dating from the eighth century BCE through the fourth century CE. Thoroughly revised, this volume offers several new elements: a comprehensive general introduction, an epilogue discussing the persistence of ancient magic into the early Christian and Byzantine eras, and an appendix on the use of mind-altering substances in occult practices. Also added is an extensive glossary of Greek and Latin magical terms. In Arcana Mundi Georg Luck presents a fascinating—and at times startling—alternative vision of the ancient world. "For a long time it was fashionable to ignore the darker and, to us, perhaps, uncomfortable aspects of everyday life in Greece and Rome," Luck has written. "But we can no longer idealize the Greeks with their 'artistic genius' and the Romans with their 'sober realism.' Magic and witchcraft, the fear of daemons and ghosts, the wish to manipulate invisible powers—all of this was very much a part of their lives."