As some of you know I have a degree in History from a University one of the top three History programs in North America. My final thesis was on Liber Iuratus Honorii, an early grimoire.
The next several posts will be that essay. I could post it all at once, but I know how attention spans on the internet work, so I’ll break it down into more reasonably sized chunks and post it over several days. Unfortunately due to the nature of academic writing there are long thoughts and paragraphs, so there isn’t always a good place to break the essay down. Some entries will be 500 words, others a 1000. I tended to break it along themes whenever possible.
Due to being on this blog, I’ll be removing the footnotes, because they’re a pain in the arte to put onto wordpress, but I will include all the texts I reference in the final post.
My paper is on whether or not Liber Iuratus is a Christian text or not. It claims it is, and I agree (as I’ll say in the intro), so it might seem odd to write a paper on it, but that’s how the historical process works. We can’t just accept at face value a claim in a text, so we have to evaluate it. So the paper is me breaking down the grimoire and looking for clues that really confirm or deny the Christian nature of the text. If you’re not familiar with the process it might seem odd to prove a text is telling the truth. As a historian we can’t just look at what a text says, we have to understand why it would say that, who benefits from it, why has it survived, and what does it tell us. The most fascinating element of history is taking something minor, and fleshing it out to see what it means. Sure, Liber Iuratus is a Christian grimoire, but what can we learn from it, what does it tell us about Christianity at the time, the view of the Church, the social structure of society? That’s the fun, teasing out the information.
Also, as it’s an academic paper written for a general audience of medieval historians, some of my points and explanations will seem really simple and obvious to magickal folks familiar with grimoires, but they have to be said for everyone else.
So that being said over the next several days I’ll be rolling out my posts on it.
And before it begins, since I know someone will be curious. I got an A on the paper, and my professor only challenged one of my assertions, as she felt it was too biased. It was probably my second favourite history paper to write. (My first one being the creation of the lesbian identity in Western culture due to the World Wars.)