The Magic Seal of Dr. John Dee, The Sigillum Dei Aemeth
I first came across the Sigillum Dei Aemeth when it was included in the frontispiece to Adam McLean's ‘A Treatise on Angel Magic,‘ a transcription of a manuscript by Thomas Rudd from the British Library's Harley collection. I was fascinated by its intricate complexity, and as more materials related to the Sigillum Dei became available, I became equally fascinated by the innate simplicity from which its was ultimately derived.
It was this study that led to my recognition of the Sigillum Dei (of Dee and Kelley) as a cogent magical system in its own right by virtue of the distinct hierarchical cosmology defined in its successive tiers. Yes, it fit into the greater scheme of the Enochian temple with which it was so intimately connected, but it was also valid outside of that context as a planetary system in its own right.
The Magic Seal of Dr. John Dee, The Sigillum Dei Aemeth details not only the origination of this seal, but examines for the first time the use of the Sigillum Dei (detailed by Dee and Kelley through a series of angelic conversations) as a system of planetary magick. It includes a new transcription of Dee's diary entry recording the angelic conversations that describe the Sigillum Dei, a translation of the Latin text ‘Liber Iuratus Honorii,‘ describing the earlier known variant of the seal, and complete instructions on the practical use of the system of the Sigillum Dei.
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Errata & Addenda
441 - Life, the Universe, and Everything
The enumeration of Aemeth in Hebrew, as AMTh - Aleph, Mem, Tau - is 441. This number is the square of 21, the enumeration of the Hebrew name of God, Eheih, as EHIH (Aleph, Heh, Yod, Heh). Thus, there is a connotation in the name of God, Aemeth, as “Truth,” and that of the manifestation of that God as Ehieh, meaning “I am.” Square numbers are traditionally indicative of perfection, so the perfection of the emergence of the Divine is in Truth.
Forty Letters, or Forty-One?
Counting the letters of the Divine Names derived from the circumference of the Sigillum Dei, there are 41 total letters. The angels state that there should be as many letters in the names as in the forty-chamber circumference, which actually does work out if you count the compound letter “og” as separate. (The “og” appears in multiple Divine Names, and the letters are counted separately to get the final total of 41.) Dee consistently refers to a “name of 40 letters” and not the more familiar name(s) of 42 letters that he describes in Hebrew.
Liber Iuratus Honorii & The 72 Letter Name of God
In the translation of the Sworn Book of Honorius, I list the name of 72 letters that is supposed to be written about the circumference of the Sigillum Dei as described in that document. This was taken (with permission) from Gosta Hedegard's critical edition of that text, in the Latin. However, there are actually 73 letters listed in my book. The aberration is difficult to reconcile, as I am no longer in possession of that edition. Peterson gives a version that is decidedly different than Hedegard's in his edition of The Five Books of Mystery, so a strict comparison of my transcription of Hedegard's work raises more questions than it answers.
Peterson gives “ h. t. o. e. r. o. r. a. b. a. l. a. y. q. c. l. y. s. t. a. l. g. a. a. o. w. o. s. v. l. a. r. y. t. c. e. k. r. p. f. y. o. m. e. m. a. n. a. r. e. l. a. t. e. v. a. t. o. n. o. n. a. o. y. l. e. o. t. s. y. n. a.”
The greatest differences are my inclusion of the five letters “miare” at position 50 that do not appear in Peterson's transliteration, and Peterson's inclusion of four letters at the end, “syna.” However, Peterson also gives the image in Sloane 313 here, which clearly shows the terminal letters being “yot,” not “syna.”
The reality is that there are a number of variants of the 72 Letter Name of God, so the “correct one” is impossible to determine. My guess is that it has 72 letters, though, and not 73!
The Letters of the Circumference (Listing)
A few errors were introduced in the table on page 19 of the book. In the fourth set of alpha-numeric combinations, the top row of numbers was inadvertently shifted one to the left. Thus, the second position should be l, with 8 below. The third position should be G with 7 above. The fourth position should be r with 13 above. Finally, in the last position on that row, the 22 below the H should be 12. In the sixth set of letters, there is also a discrepancy in the letter r in the final position. The number 16 should be below the letter, not above.
Note that all of this is correct in the actual seal, which should be consulted in all cases of discrepancy in the text.
The works presented in De Arte Magica are © 2010–2016, Colin D. Campbell