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Ars Notoria: The Notory Art of Solomon

A Medieval Treatise on Angelic Magic and the Art of Memory

Introduction by Matthias Castle / Translated by Matthias Castle
Published by Inner Traditions
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

The 13th-century magical treatise Ars Notoria offers a secret account of the angel Pamphilius revealing the sacred magic to King Solomon by which he gained his famed wisdom and learning, thereby expanding upon the biblical narrative in which Solomon received a vision of God. Solomon’s writings were transmitted to the first-century philosopher, Apollonius of Tyana, who provided a commentary entitled the Golden Flowers (Flores Aurei), which is contained within Ars Notoria.

The magical text presents a complete system of angelic magic consisting of prayers addressed to angels, using figures called notae, for the purpose of acquiring scholastic and heavenly knowledge. Due to its rising popularity among university students, the magical ritual was reworked time and again, producing five treatises, dating from the 13th to 15th centuries; The Work of Works (Opus Operum), the Book of Flowers of Heavenly Teaching composed by the French Benedictine monk named John of Morigny, The Short Art (Ars Brevis), the abridged version attributed to Thomas of Toledo, and The Pauline Art (Ars Paulina), thereby establishing an entire notorial art tradition.

In this new and complete translation of Ars Notoria, based on Julien Veronese’s critical Latin edition, translator Matthias Castle presents the classic magical text, both short and long versions, including four of the later treatises. Castle explains how these theurgic ritual practices were performed, giving special attention to all the original pictorial figures (notae), and how the art of memory relates to angelic magic. Providing practical instruction, extensive commentary, and in-depth background research and annotations, Ars Notoria: The Notory Art of Solomon is an essential sourcebook on angelic magic for scholar and magician alike.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Inner Traditions (February 1, 2024)
  • Length: 896 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781644115275

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Raves and Reviews

“This is one of the most important books on medieval magic to be published in many years. Enormously popular for decades, Ars Notoria was adapted and mutated into many versions, making it very challenging to understand. It is exciting to see an expert translation based on Véronèse’s reliable critical edition of the Latin versions and other primary texts. Matthias Castle’s tome is massive but worth every penny for its encyclopedic but lucid treatment of the many elements, such as the angelology, magical figures, rituals, art of memory, and liberal arts. Given the significant impact Ars Notoria had on later magical texts, including the Key of Solomon and Sworn Book of Honorius, Castle’s edition should be valuable to scholars and practitioners alike.”

– Joseph H. Peterson, author, translator, and creator of the Esoteric Archives website

“One of the lost treasures of medieval occultism, the Ars Notoria is a system of Solomonic angelic magic used by students and scholars to attain knowledge of the arts and sciences. Matthias Castle has done an exemplary job in translating the original texts and setting out all the details of the notory art for today’s scholars and practitioners of magic.”

– John Michael Greer, coauthor and cotranslator of The Complete Picatrix: The Occult Classic of Astrol

“This volume offers readers for the first time an English translation of this important work of image magic, based on the best available critical edition. Readers can count on a combination of readability and accuracy, and the book represents a substantial contribution by rendering this text accessible to a new audience of students and practitioners alike.”

– David Porreca, Ph.D., associate professor and codirector of the medieval studies undergraduate progr

“Offers a methodical foundation for understanding and exploring the various manuscripts of the Ars Notoria tradition and its historical contexts. Richly illustrated with a wide evidentiary range of the Ars Notoria’s sacred diagrams, figures, sigils, and seals from across the manuscript corpus and presenting section-by-section close readings of the prayerful and conjurational texts in question, this book furnishes those enamored of the notory art a deeper understanding of its peculiar prayers and protocols. This work should provide all those interested in medieval angelology, manuscript illumination, grimoiric conjuration, and visual cultures of sacred art a valuable historical resource for understanding and engaging with these most pious and pedagogical of grimoiric traditions.”

– Alexander Cummins, Ph.D., historian and coauthor of An Excellent Booke of the Arte of Magicke

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