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Rare spell books sell for $13,865 but beware of the curse

Just days before All Hallow’s Eve, two handwritten, spiral-bound books of spells have sold on AbeBooks.com for $13,865, but the buyer risks being cursed if they are not a believer in witchcraft.  The opening page of the first of the two grimoires (that’s a magical textbook) is inscribed with the haunting warning:

To those not of the craft – the reading of this book is forbidden!  Proceed no further or justice will exact a swift and terrible retribution – and you will surely suffer at the hand of the craft.” 

The same warning is then inscribed again in Theban, an ancient alphabet used in modern Wicca to hide magical text from those who do not believe in witchcraft.  The author, a witch, has signed the page using the Theban alphabet.  Let’s hope the buyer is a real-life Hermione and not a Muggle.

Grimoire Warning

According to Wiccan traditions, a witch’s Book of Shadows, or grimoire, should be burned after the witch’s death to keep their magical identity a secret.  This ritual makes grimoires very scarce and a sale of this nature is highly unusual.

The grimoires were handwritten in the 1960s by a high priestess of Wicca called Persephone Adrastea Eirene, an American witch of Swedish and English ancestry who led her own coven.  The first of the two books is a reworking of Persephone’s mother’s grimoire and contains hundreds of years of Wicca knowledge passed through generations of high priestesses in 250 pages of spells, incantations, curses and enchantments.  The book includes information on gems, planets, rites, potions, and even exorcisms. The second book includes alchemy, chemistry recipes, cures, ceremonial perfumes and balms, as well as recipes for nerve tonics, liqueurs and even hairspray.

The Laws


Before eventually finding their way to M Benjamin Katz Fine Books & Rare Manuscripts in Toronto, the grimoires belonged to Alice Monseratt, the wife of Israel Regardie.  Regardie moved to the UK in the 1920s to work with occult writer Aleister Crowley after reading his masterwork Magick: Liber ABA Book 4.  Crowley’s writings have had an enormous impact on the occult, and last year a 1910 edition of Crowley’s The Scented Garden of Abdullah the Satirist of Shiraz sold on AbeBooks for $7,386.   

After working closely with Crowley for four years, Regardie left to pen his own occult book, The Tree of Life. He joined the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and wrote The Golden Dawn: The Original Account of the Teachings, Rites, & Ceremonies of the Hermetic Order after the Order disbanded. He was accused by past members for violating the oath of the Order by revealing secret information, but Regardie believed the information should be shared. Despite the initial backlash, The Golden Dawn is a mainstay in modern occult organizations and magical practices.

Magick: Liber ABA Book 4 by Aleister Crowley  The Tree of Life by Israel Regardie  The Golden Dawn by Israel Regardie

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Jessica Doyle

8 Responses to “Rare spell books sell for $13,865 but beware of the curse”

  1. Im not sure about “curses”, But there are things in this world that I think shouldnt be tampered with. If someone is looking for something dark, I think they just might find it. In just the same way, I think it is no wonder that most churches are filled with people that do fairly well financially. You dont see “bums” off the streets in churches often…

  2. Be quiet Keith, you fool.

  3. They are foolish and should we weary of the warnings.

  4. Intresting! I respect all walks of Life. Bible mentions Evil, yet not all spells are Bad. I practice and what a major difference. All boils down to respect. We all want a good Life Not? So take Charge of u Life and stop judging!!!

  5. Couldn’t be hundreds of years of Wiccan knowledge because Wicca began in the early 20th century

  6. Lucinda ~
    I have been thinking very hard for a very long time about this balance. I am torn though. I feel I have it in me to be so much more and find my soul. I believe in God or a creature and I believe in Science as well as our very own universe and others. I believe we are meant to be so much more and I find it frustrating bc I would love to use my mind and soul along with the right education or guidence to really be who I think I need to be. I’ve always had a strong pull to natural things and feel I conect with the earth deeply. I’m just lost and don’t know where or how to start and not feel like its “witch craft” I just feel lost and I’m not doing whatever it is in life I was created for. Do you have any advice or can you point me in the right direction? I saw your post and I felt the same way so..

  7. Hello Natasha
    In response to your comment above to start out with there are couple of things you should be made aware of that will be a good source of help to you. Firstly we all should have a strong Spiritual Knowledge of who we are, and having said this being conscious of our dreams is the first starting point, because this is our direct link to the Universal Power of – All – In – All. Beside the general knowledge of the Astrological and Astronomical knowing I would recommend you to read the Book Entitled : Cycle of Life and Self Mastery by the Rosicrucian Library. I think you can still find this at Amazon.com and very inexpensive.
    Secondly Once we know our self and how we operate at mundane conscious level, then we can start to learn about Natural Laws as it applies to Spiritual World above and below.
    Thirdly, Once we get through to this level of development, you would notice that you would be operating in light and able to overcome any and all issues that crosses your path Physically, Mentally and Spiritually. These are also the best Elements of Magickal Practice you can achieve. It’s like building your body for the Foundation of all Magical Practices.