Opuscula Cypriani HB- José Leitão, ed. [Portugal, grimoire]


The large volume of nearly a thousand pages is a remarkable service to the history of magic in Portugal. José Leitão offers full-colour scans of many magical prayers, texts and grimoire materials, followed by transcriptions of the original Portuguese and, on the facing page, English translations. Each section is accompanied by an analytical essay by Leitão on the material, considering what it means, and how it fits into the larger cultural context of esoteric belief.  To a large extent the texts are attributed to, or work with, St Cyprian, but we also find much on the Devil, demons, fortune-telling cards, magic charms.  It is made up of three sections

1. several variants of the magico- religious Prayer of St. Cyprian, as well as other smaller compositions which call on Cyprian in his quality of healer, diviner, and dominator.

2.  contents and translations of five variations of the very Book of St Cyprian, taking in French and Afro-Brazilian cross-pollenations.  An 18th century Portuguese manuscript of the book is presented for the first time ever in print.  

3.  derivative magical material, such as pamphlets, booklets and almanacs: these contain domination sorcery, harmful spells, love spells, luck charms, cartomancy guides, and Cyprian divinations.


It is a magisterial work. Black recycled leather boards with gilt foil stamp decoration to upper board and gilt title to spine. Pearlescent old endpapers. Many full-page colour scans for facsimile reproductions of the documents. Occasional black-and-white line drawings and diagrammes on the noncolour pages.Black endbands, black ribbon. 


West Yorkshire: Hadean Press, 2019. Hardback, 954 pages . New.