Three Books of Occult Philosophy/Book 1/Chapter 45

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Three Books of Occult Philosophy by Henry Cornelius Agrippa, translated by John French
Book 1, Chapter 45

Unguents, conveying the vertues of things Naturall, and Celestiall to our spirit, can multiply, transmute, transfigure, and transform it accordingly, as also transpose those vertues which are in them into it, that so it cannot act only upon its own body, but also upon that which is neer it, and affect that by visible rayes, charmes, and by touching it, with some like quality. For because our spirit is the subtile, pure lucid, airy, and unctuous vapour of the blood; it is therefore fit to make Collyries of the like vapours, which are more sutable to our spirit in subtance, for then by reason of their likeness, they do the more stir up, attract, and transform the spirit. The like vertues have certain ointments, and other confections. Hence by the touch sometimes sickness, poisonings, and love is induced; some things, as the hands, or garments being anointed: Also by kisses, some things being held in the mouth, love is induced, as in Virgil we read that Venus prayes Cupid

That when glad Dido hugs him in her lap
At royall feasts, crown'd with the cheering Grape,
When she imbracing, shall sweet kisses give,
Inspire hid Flame, with deadly bane deceive,
He would
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Now the sight, because it perceives more purely, and cleerly then the other senses, and fastening in us the marks of things more acutely, and deeply, doth most of all, and before others agree with the Phantastick spirit, as is apparent in dreams, when things seen do more often present themselves to us then things heard, or any thing coming under the other senses. Therefore when Collyries transform visuall spirits, that spirit doth easily affect the imagination, which indeed being affected with divers species, and forms, transmits the same by the same spirit unto the outward sense of sight, by which occasion there is caused in it a perception of such species, and forms in that manner, as if it were moved by externall objects, that there seem to be seen terrible images, and spirits, and such like: so there are made Collyries, making us forthwith to see the images of spirits in the Aire, or elsewhere, as I know how to make of the gall of a man, and the eyes of a black Cat, and of some other things. The like is made also of the blood of a Lapwing, of a Bat, and of a Goat, and they say, if a smooth shining piece of Steel be smeered over with the juice of Mugwort, and made to fume, it will make invocated spirits to be seen in it. So also there are some suffumigations, or unctions, which make men speak in their sleep, to walk, and to do those things which are done by men that are awake, and sometimes to do those things, which men that are awake cannot, or dare not do. Some there are that make us to hear horrid, or delectable sounds, and such like. And this is the cause why Maniacall, and Melancholy men believe they see, and hear those things without, which their imagination doth only fancy within, hence they fear things not to be feared, and fall into wonderfull, and most false suspicions, and fly when none pursueth them, are angry, and contend, no body being present, and fear where no fear is. Such like passions also can magicall confections induce, by Suffumigations, by Collyries, by Unguents, by potions, by poisons, by lamps, and lights, by looking glasses, by images, enchantments, charms, sounds, and Musick. Also by divers rites, observations, ceremonies, religions, and superstitions; all which shall be handled in their places. And not only by these kind of arts, passions, apparitions, and images induced, but also things themselves, which are really changed, and transfigured into divers forms, as the Poet relates of Proteus, Periclimenus, Acheloas, and Merra, the daughter of Erisichthon: So also Circe changed the companions of Ulysses, & of old in the sacrifices of Jupiter Lycæus, the men that tasted of the inwards of the sacrifices, were turned into Wolves, which Pliny saith, befell a certain man called Demarchus, the same opinion was Austin of: for he saith, whilest he was in Italy, he heard of some women that by giving Sorceries in cheese to travellors, turned them into working Catle, and when they had done such work as they would have them, turned them into men again, and that this befell a certain Father called Prestantius. The Scriptures themselves testify that Pharao's Sorcerers turned their rods into Serpents, and water into blood, and did such like things.

When the soul of the world, by its vertue doth make all things that are naturally generated, or artificially made, fruitfull, by infusing into them Celestiall properties for the working of some wonderfull effects, then things themselves not only applyed by suffumigations, or Collyries, or oyntments, or potions, or any other such like way, but also when they being conveniently wrapt up, are bound to, or hanged about the neck, or any other way applyed, although by never so easy a contact, do impress their vertue upon us. By these alligations therefore, suspensions, wrappings up, applications, and contacts the Accidents of the body, and mind are changed into sickness, health, boldness, fear, sadness, and joy, and the like: They render them that carry them, gratious, or terrible, acceptable, or rejected, honoured, and beloved, or hatefull, and abominable. Now these kind of passions are conceived to be by the abovesaid, infused no otherwise, then is manifest in the graffing of trees, where the vitall vertue is sent, and Communicated from the trunk to the twig graffed into it, by way of contact and alligation; so in the female Palme tree, when she comes neer to the male, her boughs bend to the male, and are bowed: which the gardners seeing, bind ropes from the male to the female, which becomes straight again, as if it had by this continuation of the rope received