Cultura & Literatura
All About History

All About History Book of Spells

All About History is the stunningly realised new magazine from the makers of How It Works and All About Space. Featuring beautiful illustrations, photos and graphics depicting everything from ancient civilisations to the Cold War, All About History is accessible and entertaining to all and makes history fun for the whole family.

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
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13 Edições

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1 minutos

Have you ever wanted to make magic? Spellcraft is a mysterious and mystical art form, but with preparation and dedication, you can learn and experience it. To get started, you need to understand its history, from the beliefs and texts of its earliest practitioners to the magical theory that has grown out of them over centuries of practise. In this Book of Spells, you’ll discover some of the world’s oldest magical texts and how they were used, learn how to plan and assemble the ingredients you need, explore the figures and festivals that can help to energise your spells, and get started with casting them. We encourage you to take the time to explore the history and theory of magic before diving straight into casting spells. Like everything, the more…

3 minutos
magic words

Many people believe in the inherent ability of words to influence the world around us, yet not just any words do this: incantations are magical formulae, said with a specific tone and rhyme. The word ‘incantation’ comes from the Latin incantare, meaning ‘to chant or bewitch’, also the origin of the word enchant. They usually appear in a specific context that denotes their sacred and magical nature, often as part of a ritual or ceremony. They are spoken verses, songs or chants, used to make the intent of the speaker have a tangible, magical effect in the world – be it on an object, or even a person. The uttering of the words themselves are a ritual act, and sometimes seen as sacred performance in religious ceremonies throughout the world. The…

2 minutos
magical thinking

Many people don’t believe in magic. But many people have in the past, and many people do now. Those who don’t might dismiss this as silly, pointing out that there is no secret Harry Potter world hidden behind the mundane realities of everyday life. But in fact the theory and practice of magic has a long and venerable history, and whether you choose to believe in it or not, without some of its philosophical ideas and technological advances, the rational, scientific world of the 21st century would not be what it is today. Sociologists often think of magic in relation to two other key ideas that we use to understand the world around us: religion and science. Religion attempts to explain the mysteries of existence through the prism of gods and…

4 minutos
magic through the ages

Primal rites Paleolithic peoples create artwork based around the acknowledgement of prey animals and the ritual propitiation of their ancestors. Some paintings include strange, human-animal hybrids that are later theorised to be shamanistic figures. Paleolithic era Defining moment Pyramid scheme c. 2686–2181 BCE The Pyramid Texts, dating from the ancient Egyptian Old Kingdom, are the oldest still-extant magical texts. Primarily related to the ancient Egyptian religion, particularly the cult of Osiris, the god of the afterlife and rebirth, they describe magical processes by which the dead can transform their spirit into an akh, an aspect of the soul that was believed to allow them to assume any form and visit the world of the living. Achieving the state of an akh required certain things: the soul had to be worthy according to the judgement of Maat,…

6 minutos
rites of the ancient mages

Some of the earliest examples of magical thinking can be seen in the art and artefacts left behind by our Paleolithic ancestors. While we don’t have written records that explain to us what these ancient people meant thousands of years ago when they created these items, we can infer something of their use and meaning from context. We know that in the Middle to Upper Paleolithic eras (between 80,000-40,000 years ago), hunter-gatherers improved many of their existing technologies and created new ones. They also began to create art, and this gives us a clue as to what they might have been thinking. Cave paintings of prey animals may show a simple record of what to kill and when, which older hunters would have narrated to younger ones. Or they may show…

6 minutos
fear of a black magic

The time between the classical era and the Age of Reason was a golden age for magic. It seems strange to say this when for much of the medieval and early modern periods it was feared, to the extent that tens of thousands of people were persecuted in Europe and the New World because they were suspected of practicing it. But that fear itself points to a strong and widespread belief in the reality and utility of magic spells. The West’s fear of magic and its practitioners was the legacy of the half-remembered Graeco-Roman thought that it based some of its philosophical ideology on, and of the Christian dogma that it had begun to embrace wholeheartedly. Practitioners of magic, then, were seen as not only the charlatans that the Greeks and…