Saturday, December 28, 2013

N. Mureddu (2013) ‘‘Ad omnia quae uelit incredibilis’: An Overview of Ancient Magic from the Roman Context to its Late Antique Perspective and Models’

Hematite magic scarab gem with a
"uroborus" serpent. Protective gem.
(1st century CE, Roman Egypt)
Today we delve into the world of magic! Nicola Mureddu discusses first Roman and then early Christian perceptions of magic in this article, and delves into the key powers, beliefs, and figures in both systems. Of special concern is Simon Magus--Simon the Magician--a first century CE convert to Christianity who engaged in magic and made many claims as to his own powers before being ultimately defeated by St. Peter. The article provides a basic understanding of some key ideas and sources in respect to ancient magic in the early empire into the fourth century CE.

PDF of the Article: Here. 

Journal Issue: Here. 

Feedburner Link: Here.

iTunes Page: Here. 

For a broader overview of magic and its criminalization in the Roman empire [in text form], I would suggest James Rives' wonderful article on "Magic in Roman Law."

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