The Ritman Library owns a manuscript produced in #Germany called “Tractatum artis notoriae et expositiones eius quas Apollonius flores aureos appellavit”. Although this #manuscript was written in the middle of the 17th century, the work itself is one of the pseudo-#Solomonic #magical works that can roughly be dated to the 13th-14th centuries. “Ars notoria” manuscripts, usually attributed to King #Solomon but occasionally also to Apollonius of Tyana, as is this manuscript, contain short magical treatises, including one on the power of the #divine Hebrew names (cf. #Agrippa, “De occulta philosophia”, Book 3). The seal here reproduced is a Christian addition: IHS, In hoc signo, is the sacred seal of the New #Testament; ‘et vocabitur nomen eius Iesus’, and his name was #Jesus, from the Gospel of Matthew. Works like these basically offered the reader knowledge of the secrets of the universe in a nutshell. In fact ‘reader’ is not a good word to use, because these manuscripts had to be actively perused. The user read the orations but more importantly, he or she had to actively contemplate the magical seals contained in them – ‘not to be read, but to be inspected’- the user thus gained inspectival knowledge, in the words of Stephen Clucas.
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