Sefer Hokhmat Shelomoh, ketav yad, ha-nikra Sapiʼentsiʼah Salomanis

Hebrew manuscript attributed to Solomon, King of Israel with 100 paintings of demons Kings, ca. 1849

This unusual Hebrew manuscript, containing the names of one-hundred demon kings and their subordinates, is preserved at the the Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York. Its full title name is: ספר חכמת שלמה, כתב יד, הנקרא ספיאנציאה סלומניס (Romanized: ‘Sefer Ḥokhmat Shelomoh, ketav yad, ha-nikra Sapiʼentsiʼah Salomanis’). It is written in Hebrew with square and semi-square letters, with spirit seals and cabalistic letters, followed by 4 leaves in an Ashkenazic cursive hand.

The overall structure is similar to that of the Goetia and Liber Officiorum Spirituum. It contains a large index of demons, each with a corresponding color portrait. Each entry includes the demon’s name, his Seal, his opposing angel, the direction he governeth, his rank and command, how many spirits he ruleth, description of powers, his physical appearance, as well as instructions on how summon him and his conjuration. Some also include the opposing angel’s seal. I have included an example entry with English translation below. The text contains details for 100 demons, each of which is a King. Their portraits depict them in human form with attire that corresponds with their abode. For example, Western Kings wear Regency era buckskin breeches, claw hammer coats, and riding boots, where as Eastern Kings are depicted wearing harem pants, turbans, or crown caps. Under each of these portraits appears their name transliterated into cabalistic letters, otherwise known as the celestial alphabet.

The text begins with the “first Caesar of Satans kingdom” named Bilzibut (or Beelzebuth), king of Kings who ruleth over 99 demons. Directly below him are the Cardinal kings, each who rule over a Cardinal direction: Oryanes (The 2nd King from the East), Pa’ounoun (3rd King from the West) Egi’yen (4th King from the North), and Amiyamon (5th King from the South). Only the aforementioned Kings are depicted addressing their next in command. Each King thats follows appears unescorted (i.e. the 6th King, Ashtarout). I have depicted the leadership hierarchy below.

Infernal Leadership Hierarchy

Structure of the Text

The figure displayed in the Hero banner above is called Nabour, the 29th King who can build cities and create nice clothing, gold, and silver. He governeth 50 demons. I will be adding a Table with translations of all 100 demon names soon.

Cataloged as follows:

Description: Hokhmat Shelomoh, written on parchment, ends on fol. 106; fol. 107-110, written on paper, contain further instructions in the proper deportment for the use this manual. Occult manual attributed to Solomon King of Israel, containing the names of one hundred kings of the demons and for each king a list of the demons under him and an indication of how he can be helpful to a person.

Publisher: Central or Eastern Europe

Creation Date: 610 [i.e. 1849 or 1850]

Format: 110 leaves : parchment , col. ill. ; 20 x 15.5 cm. bound to 21 x 16 cm. in box 23.5 x 18.5 cm…

Language: Hebrew

Notes: Manuscript codex. Decoration: A color portrait of each demonic king is displayed on the page facing his particulars. Binding: Original leather binding. Shelfmark: New York, The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary, MS 1870.

Language Notes: Hebrew ; square and semi-square letters, with magical signs and cabalistic letters, followed by 4 leaves in an Ashkenazic cursive hand.

Published with permission of the Jerry Schwarzbard at the Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary, New York.

Hebrew to English translation courtesy of Mr. Chen Attoun.

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