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Moses wrought so many miracles ; that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still; that Elias called down fire from heaven; that Daniel the prophet muzzled the lions' mouths; and that the three children sang in the fiery furnace. And, what is more, the perfidious and unbelieving Jews, did not stick to aver, that our Saviour himself wrought all his miracles by virtue of this art, and that he discovered several of its secrets, containing a variety of charms against devils, and also, as Josephus writes, against diseases. “ As for my part,” says Cornelius Agrippa, in allusion to this subject," I do not doubt but that God revealed many things to Moses and the prophets, which were contained under the covert of the words of the law, which were not to be communicated to the profane vulgar: so for this art, which the Jews so much boast of, which I have with great labour and diligence searched into, I must acknowledge it to be a mere rhapsody of superstition, and nothing but a kind of theurgic magic before spoken of. For if, as the Jews contend, coming from God, it did any way conduce to perfection of life, salvation of men, truth of understanding, certainly that spirit of truth, which having forsaken the synagogue, is now come to teach us all truth, had never concealed it all this while from the church, which certainly knows all those things that are of God; whose grace, baptism, and other sacraments of salvation, are perfectly revealed in all languages ;-for every language is alike, so that there be the same piety; neither is there any other name in heaven or on earth, by which we can be saved, but only the name of Jesus, Therefore the Jews, most skilful in divine names, after the coming of Christ, were able to do nothing, in comparison of their forefathers :—the Cabala of the Jews, therefore, is nothing else, but a most pernicious superstition, the which by collecting, dividing, and changing several names, words, and letters, dispersed up and down in the bible, at their own good will and pleasure, and making one thing out of another, they dissolve the members of truth, raising up sentences, inductions, and parables of their own, apply thereto the oracles of divine scripture to them, defaming the scriptures, and affirming their fragments to consist of them, blaspheme the word of God by their wrested suppositions of words, syllables, letters and numbers; endeavouring to prop up their villainous inventions, by arguments drawn from their own delusions.”



The pretended art of producing, by the assistance of words and ceremonies, such events as are above the natural power of men, was of several kinds, and chiefly consisted in invoking the good and benevolent, or the wicked and malignant spirits. The first, which was called Theurgia, was adopted by the wisest of the Pagan world, who esteemed this as much as they despised the latter, which they called Goetia.

Theurgia was by the philosophers accounted a divine art, which only served to raise the mind to higher perfection, and to exalt the soul to a greater degree of purity; and they who by means of this kind of magic, were imagined to arrive at what is called intuition, wherein they enjoyed an intimate intercourse with the deity, were believed to be invested with divine power; so that it was imagined nothing was impossible for them to perform; all who made profession of this kind of magic aspired to this state of perfection. The priest, who was of this order, was to be a man of unblemished morals, and all who joined with him were bound to a strict purity of life. They were to abstain from women, and from animal food; and were forbid to defile themselves by the touch of a dead body. Nothing was to be forgotten in their rites and ceremonies; the least omission or mistake, rendered all their art ineffectual: so that this was a constant excuse for their not performing all that was required of them, though as their sole employment (after having arrived to a certain degree of perfection, by fasting, prayer, and other methods of purification) was the study of universal nature, they might gain such an insight into physical causes, as would enable them to perform actions, that should fill the vulgar with astonishment; and it is hardly to be doubted, but this was all the knowledge that many of them aspired to. In this sort of magic, Hermes Tresmegistus and Zoroaster excelled, and indeed it gained great reputation among the Egyptians, Chal: deans, Persians, Indians and Jews. In times of ignorance, a piece of clock-work, or some other curious machine, was sufficient to entitle the inventor to the works of magic; and some have even asserted, that the Egyptian magic, rendered so famous by the writings of the ancients, consisted only in discoveries drawn from the mathematics, and natural philosophy, since those Greek philosophers who travelled into Egypt, in order to obtain a knowledge of the Egyptian sciences, returned with only a know

ledge of nature and religion, and some rational ideas of their ancient symbols.

But it can hardly be doubted, that magic in its grossest and most ridiculous sense was practised in Egypt, at least among some of the vulgar, long before Pythagoras or Empedocles travelled into that country. The Egyptians had been very early accustomed to vary the signification of their symbols, by adding to them several plants, ears of corn, or blades of grass, to express the different employments of husbandry; but understanding no longer their meaning nor the words that had been made use of on these occasions, which were equally unintelligible, the vulgar might mistake these for so many mysterious practices observed by their fathers; and hence they might conceive the notion, that a conjunction of plants, even without being made use of as a remedy, might be of efficacy to preserve or procure health. Of these,” adds the Abbé Pluche, “ they made a collection, and an art by which they pretended to procure the blessings, and provide against the evils of life.” By the assistance of these, men even attempted to hurt their enemies ; and indeed the knowledge of poisonous or useful simples, might on particular occasions give sufficient weight to their empty curses and innovations. But these magic incantations, so contrary to humanity, were detested, and punished by almost all nations; nor could they be tolerated in any.

Pliny, after mentioning an herb, the throwing of which into an army, it was said, was sufficient to

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