Archive for the ‘edward kelley’ Tag

John Dee Manuscripts Back Online! ( Demise)   1 comment

Greetings Dee Aficionados!

It is with much sadness that I report the demise of The Magickal Review dot org – which once offered digital scans of all of Dee’s Enochian journals, a PDF of TFR, and many other important academic resources.¬† ūüė¶

I wish I knew what happened, though the site’s administrator (Ian Rons) has been posting for a couple of years that he has lost interest in the Enochian system.¬† He likely simply felt it was time to move on…

I can say, without a doubt, that my last three Enochian books would not have been possible without Ian’s site, along with his direct help and permissions.¬† So wherever you are, Ian, thanks!¬† ūüôā

Meanwhile, we have not lost those academic resources!¬† Joshua Knarr acted quickly and recovered most (if not, by this point, all) of the scanned Enochian documents plus a ton of other great material – and archived them all on his Ceremonial Magick Musings blog.¬† Thanks Joshua!¬† ūüôā

Posted April 11, 2014 by kheph777 in books, enochian

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Will the Real Edward Kelley Please Stand Up   4 comments

Greetings, history buffs!



Nick Farrell just posted a blog about a rare painting of Edward Kelley that¬†recently sold at auction in the UK (pictured above).¬† I had mentioned this on Facebook back when it was first sold, but didn’t bother to blog about it.¬† The reason I’m doing so now is because of the fascinating discussion that Nick’s post has generated about Kelley’s actual appearance (and to some extent his personality).

As Nick points out, the above painting was certainly made long after Kelley’s time, and was at least partially based on the woodcut of Kelley created for Meric Casaubon’s True and Faithful Relation…¬†(see below).¬† That, too, was made decades after Kelley’s death and based entirely on how the artist thought Kelley might have appeared.¬† (Specifically fitting his – likely erroneous –¬†reputation as a rogue and con-man.)¬† Yet there are some differences between that woodcut and the above painting that suggest there might have been some “local knowledge” at work in the creation of the later image.¬† Note that the painting shows him older, dignified and even on the heavy side – while the below engraving shows him gaunt, with a shorter scraggly beard and shifty eyes.



Probably not what Kelley looked like

What really inspired me about this subject was a reply on Nick’s post by Vincent Bridges, where he quotes from his own work ¬†An Alchemical Enigma: A Short History of the Rise and Fall of Sir Edward Kelley.¬† It’s just three short paragraphs, but they contain more insight into what Edward Kelley really looked like – and something about his personality as well – than I have ever read anywhere before.¬† In fact, it is so fascinating I’m going to reproduce the comment here.¬† Enjoy!

For example, we have no clear idea what he even looked like; the only¬† portrait¬†was done from ‚Äúreputation‚ÄĚ a good 60 years after his death by the Dutch engraver¬†Franz Cleyn. It shows a gaunt, long-faced, bearded man, wearing a fur-trimmed¬† cloak and a four-cornered hat like a cleric‚Äôs biretta. However, this image is at¬†odds with the few details we do have from contemporary sources. An English¬† visitor in the fall of 1593 commented that he was ‚Äúfat and merry‚ÄĚ and another noted that he was a ‚Äúweighty‚ÄĚ man. He walked with a stick, notoriously mentioned¬†by Dr. Dee in his account of Kelley‚Äôs altercation with one of Laski‚Äôs guards on¬†the morning of his first visit with the Emperor. In the angelic sessions, his¬†difficulty in kneeling is mentioned, and most revealing of all is the Papal¬† Nuncio‚Äôs characterization in 1586 of Kelley as Dee‚Äôs hunch backed, ‚Äúil zoppo,‚Ä̬† companion.

And then there is the question of his ears, or lack of them.¬† Simon Tadeas Budeck, a Czech alchemist and occult tattletale, of whom we will¬† hear more, describes Kelley as ‚Äúhaving no ears.‚ÄĚ Budeck however did not know¬† Kelley, his manuscript comments are from 1604, and so are somewhat¬† unreliable,¬† though it seems his report is partly correct. The best documented evidence is¬† from a letter, dated in Prague, 20 July 1593, in which an Englishman named¬† Christopher Parkins reports being interrogated about Kelley by one of Rudolf‚Äôs¬† councilors. Among the questions put to Parkins was ‚Äúif I could give any account¬† of the diminishing of one of his ears, or of his good or evil behaviour in¬† England.‚ÄĚ Parkins knew Kelley, he is the source of the fat and merry comment;¬† therefore it seems likely that Kelley had had just one ear notched. The¬† alchemist Budeck also describes him as being ‚Äúlong-haired,‚ÄĚ perhaps to conceal¬† the disfigurement.

If we see Kelley as a long-haired, bearded, heavy-set man, with a sense of humor and a taste for the good things in life, and with a  bent or twisted back that required a stick for support, it helps not only to  humanize the legend, but perhaps also provides a few clues to his personality.  This of course does not take away from Kelley’s predilection for violence, his  hysterical rants, or his talent for insulting people. But it is very different  from the Faustian, demonic deluder of legend. Yet, this aura of unpleasantness  makes his success even harder to understand. What was it about him that held so many in his spell?

Notice how this new vision of Kelley as a “weighty” man better matches the painting of Kelley?¬† It is quite possible the artist was drawing on these descriptions of Kelley while also taking the woodcut into consideration.



Posted August 26, 2013 by kheph777 in enochian

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The Essential Enochian Grimoire and Cover Art   23 comments

Greetings Angel-Workers!

I’ve been given the go-ahead to share the cover-art for my next book with you.¬† Check it out!

Essential Enochian Grimoire

The Essential Enochian Grimoire – Front Cover

This is the first Enochian Magick book of its kind ever published.¬† It is not a re-hash of Dee’s journal entries, nor is it about magickal theory.¬† This grimoire – as the term implies – is a manual on how to perform the magick.¬†¬† This may be the first time you’re ever seen Enochian Magick presented as Dee himself would likely have performed it.

And¬†that’s hardly all this book covers!¬† Part 1 is an introduction to the Enochian tradition, perfect for students who are just beginning their study of the material:

– It begins with the mythos of Enoch the Prophet.

– Then outlines the work (and likely intentions) of John Dee and Edward Kelley.¬† As a bonus, I even included¬†a “cast of characters” that explains “who’s who” (both human and angel) in Dee’s magickal journals and biographies about him.

РFinally covering the post-Dee period that eventually led to the Golden Dawn recension of the system (aka Neo-Enochian).   I explain how the original Dee material made it to the Golden Dawn, how it changed as it went along, and exactly what are the differences between the Dee-purist and Neo-Enochian systems.

Part 2 of the book is the grimoire proper:

– Starting with the cosmology of Dee’s system, all of the tools and talismans, the hierarchies of angels (along with their functions and – where Dee recorded them – their appearances) and finally the initiations and magickal rituals used to summon them.¬† All four phases of the system are laid out: the Heptarchia, Gebofal (the Book of Loagaeth system), the Parts of the¬†Earth¬†and the Watchtower system.

РThen the Neo-Enochan system is layed out (entirely separate from the Dee-purist material):  including its unique hierarchy of Elemental angels and their functions, the application of occult forces (astrology, Tarot, geomancy, Tetragrammaton, etc) to the Watchtowers, the construction of truncated pyramids and Elemental sphinxes, and the descriptions and attributions of the Coptic-Egyptian Godforms used with the Watchtower squares (as well as with Rosicrucian Chess).  These Godforms include updated and corrected color schemes based upon the Elements they represent.  Finally, an example Neo-Enochian summoning ceremony is included to show you how it all fits together in practice.

Once you have read and studied the Essential Enochian Grimoire, you will have a firm grasp of the two Enochian currents (Dee-purist and Neo-Enochian), understand the differences between them, and have more than enough material on hand to begin experimenting with either one.


Enochian Magic is one aspect of the Western Esoteric Tradition that students sometimes find intimidating and overwhelming. In The Essential Enochian Grimoire, Aaron Leitch has done a remarkable job of clarifying the Enochian system for the benefit of both beginners and advanced magicians alike. You will not find a better introduction to Enochian Magic anywhere.

—¬† Charles “Chic” Cicero and Sandra “Tabatha” Cicero
Chief Adepts of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
Co-authors of The Essential Golden Dawn


In the complex and often confusing world of Enochian Magick, Aaron Leitch has accomplished the seemingly impossible by bringing clarity and precision while never oversimplifying or speaking down to the reader. He separates the major sources of what is actually a set of magickal systems‚ÄĒfrom the works of Dee and from those of the Golden Dawn‚ÄĒand without requiring years of studying an arcane language clearly explains the methods and techniques. He keeps each form of the systems discrete and independent for the purist, but also shows how they can be combined for the adventurer. This book belongs on your magickal bookshelf.

‚ÄĒDonald Michael Kraig, Author of Modern Magick


“Leitch brings his expertise to the fore in what is sure to live up to its name as an indispensable addition to any Enochian magician’s bookshelf. The Essential Enochian Grimoire provides a comprehensive look at the history and composition of both Dee’s original system and the innovations of the Golden Dawn, Aleister Crowley, and others, all appropriately divided so that magicians of either a Dee purist or Neo-Enochian persuasion can take or leave material as they see fit. Leitch goes beyond just the theory of Enochian magic, delivering a workable approach to the system that will be an important asset to many. In addition, he looks at lesser known areas, employing a scholarly approach, while making the system easy to learn and use. A highly recommended book.”
‚ÄĒ¬†Frater Yechidah, author of Enochian Magic in Theory and Enochian Magic in Practice


Due out in early 2014!

The Angelical Language – Riddled with Errors?   Leave a comment

September 8, 2010

Greetings faithful bloggers!

It is unusual for me to make an issue out of a negative review of one of my books.¬† Of course, if I find a mere attack posted as a “review”, I’m likely to take it to one of my forums and poke fun at it.¬† Everyone has a good laugh.¬† ūüôā¬† Yet, you won’t likely see me talking about that kind of thing here.

However, I have received one less-than-glowing review- for The Angelical Language Vol 2 (An Encyclopedic Lexicon of the Tongue of Angels)- that does merit some discussion.¬† It is not really an attack – the guy gave the book three stars, and at least suggested it would be useful if errors were fixed.¬† Though I also think the author was grossly exaggerating when he insisted the errors were “just too numerous to list.”¬† (Certainly the list of errors couldn’t be longer than the book itself!¬† lol)

Plus, several of the examples he does offer are not errors at all, but are issues that scholars have long debated.  The 48 Angelical Calls were not given to Dee as a complete and perfect set.  There were a lot of issues with their reception, and both Dee and Enochian scholars since his time have worked to correct and complete them.  What you see in The Angelical Language are *my* conclusions, even if they conflict with the conclusions of others.

I originally wrote a reply to this review that boiled down to: “Don’t mistake your own conclusions about Dee’s material as immutable fact.”¬† It also reminded the reader that I don’t consider the Lexicon to be the final word on the language forever.¬† The work continues, the Lexicon will be updated and expanded as the years continue.

However, for a while now, I’ve felt that something was not quite right with my reply.¬† It almost said what I wanted it to say, but didn’t quite convey the message.¬† Finally, I realized that I had put too much emphasis on replying to the reviewer himself, where the emphasis should have been on the continuing evolution of the work.¬† And, worst of all, it was missing a certain invitation to all of you.

Below I am posting both the original review, and my updated reply.  If you own, or plan to own, a copy of my Angelical Lexicon I hope you will read on:

Room for improvement, May 24, 2010
By ¬†Veritas “KK”

This review is from: The Angelical Language, Volume II: An Encyclopedic Lexicon of the Tongue of Angels (Hardcover)

This is an interesting work, where clearly a lot of effort has gone into it. However, I was somewhat disappointed by the fact that the author has used, for his main source, Casaubon’s printed version of Dee’s works, which contain many errors. One example will suffice: the word ‘Peral’, to be found in Key 5 (according to Leitch and many other authors), never appears in Dee’s works at all. It is in fact a misprint for ‘Peoal’. At least Leitch has inserted it in its correct position. There are a number of other spelling errors throughout the Keys. I would also strongly argue against some of the numbered listings of the Keys near the beginning of the book, where, in my view, they are clearly wrong, but it was nice to see that in the first Key he lists 86 words (despite the fact that many individual words are numbered incorrectly), which is certainly correct. My last criticism is with accents: Dee never uses the circumflex (found throughout this work, and interpreted as as long vowel); all these should be replaced with a breve (from the Latin brevis – short), being a short vowel or syllable. The number of errors in this work are just too numerous to list, simply because the author is not using original source works.

To be of any real value, works such as this must be based upon Dee’s original manuscripts; relying on printed sources is a serious mistake. I have found no printed source which is free from errors, some of them are appalling. My own 40 year study in this field may one day be published. As a final note, I would say that, a revised and corrected version of this work would be a valuable addition to Enochian (not a word Dee ever used) literature.


Salmontree says:

My understanding from reading the intro to Volume I, was that the author exhaustively used the original source (Dee’s notebooks) and did not use Casaubon as his main source, as this reviewer states.


Aaron Leitch says:


Salmontree, you are correct. TFR was among the sources for my work, but was not my only source. It is quoted extensively in my books simply because (at the time I wrote them) it was the most commonly available source for my readers to reference for themselves. (Now, thankfully, anyone can see Dee’s originals online at The Magickal Review website.)

I am fully aware that TFR contains many mistakes and misprints (and mis-placed pages, etc, etc). These mistakes have been well vetted by Enochian scholars, and you will find them corrected in my work. (For example, check the entry for Coronzom.)

Of course, that doesn’t mean that this project – which I accomplished alone over the course of 10 years – didn’t see a rare mistake or two make it through the filters. I state very clearly in the introduction that my work is not offered as definitive of the language. It is simply the best anyone has offered to date, and it is my sincere hope that all Enochian students and scholars will do their part in correcting AND expanding the Lexicon. Any mistakes you folks help me find, I will be happy to correct for the next printing of the book.

As for the 48 Angelical Calls: I had to do a lot of corrective work on them before I could present them with their cross-reference numbers. The Calls were not simply given to Dee as a completed set. Not only Dee, but many Enochian scholars since him have worked to correct them.

I invite any and all Dee and Enochian scholars, students and practitioners to contact me if they find something I missed. This project is a living and growing thing, and it will take many minds and many years to fully understand and develop the Tongue of Angels.


Posted November 16, 2010 by kheph777 in books, enochian

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