A brief history of the Occult in France

I took my time to write this carefully.

Founded on a magical triangle, the French capital is also the capital of mysteries. Characters
and enigmatic facts are in the shadow of a history based on magic, on sacred ceremonies, and on pacts with the devil. Some rituals have survived the lights of the city even in the days our. Paris leads a
double life: it is the city of lights, tourists, a capital full of museums and historical vestiges, but at the
same time the place where strange rituals occur, the homeland of the gods and the alchemists, the
ghosts and the witches. The magical tradition of Paris is very old (Plinius himself had noticed the
“strange habits” of the Welsh tribe of the parisies) and, apparently, did not fall at all with the passage of time, so nowadays there is a clairvoyant, a magician or a healer for every 150 inhabitants. The origins
of the city are also mysterious - around the city of Paris were discovered tombs that prove that Celts
have inhabited this area during the Iron Age. Many historians assert that the island of the city was
specifically chosen by the druidic-priests to celebrate their rituals, their hypothesis having as proof the
many effigies of the god Cerunnos, discovered to date. It is known that these druids determined the
sacred places according to a sacred geography, based on very precise teluric law about which,
unfortunately, nothing is known anymore in the days our. Hence, assumptions that the Paris building
site was chosen according to a magical triangulation seems true. Along with Christianity, the partisans of druidic beliefs have escaped clandestinely and have perpetuated their secret magic rituals, that have been kept up to this day. In Paris, there are several religious associations with Celtic footprints, some of which have a authentic base. Their members celebrate in Vincennes or in the Meudon Forest the great annual holidays of the druidic calendar, in a total respect of ancient rituals. There is an esoteric group that states that it is in possession of transcendental knowledge, inherited from the first centuries of our era. Hailing a well-defined calendar, the followers gather in the crypt from the Notre Dame Cathedral, where they worship the “Notre-Dame of the Earth,” the druid-goddess-mother. This cult makes it clear that she is nothing but the Egyptina goddess, Isis, mistress of esoteric doctrines and magicl arts - who was venerated in Paris on the island of Sena, where was then built the abbey at Saint-Germain-des-Paris. Whatever the truth, the cult of Isis is cyclically found in Paris. In 1643, two witches were arrested, trapped in an offense, while practicing a ritual in the Saint Sulpice cemetery with the help of two small statues representing Isis. In 1720, in the Innocent Cemetery, the members of a worshiping sect of Iisis gathered in a mortuary chapel, where they practiced necromancy. The obscure and mysterious part of Paris is not limited to Egyptian Oriental groups, admirers of the mysteries of Isis, which will always seduce a broad audience. With the advent of Christianity, if by far, druidic rituals have been removed, being reduced to simple secret meetings, another important character appeared on the Parisian stage: the devil. It’s not Satan, the one in from the Gospels, but a heterogeneous devil that has little in common with the entity from the Christian doctrines. To combat the powerful influence that ancient pagan rituals continued to exert on the population, Christianity tried to assimilate by all means certain luminaries with which he could find a certain “modus convivendi” acceptable: as we seen in the dark virgins - Christian churches were built in the places dedicated to the druidic cult of the mother goddess and thus different divinities (Esus, Pan, Cernunnos) were reunited in the person of a devil equipped with horns, tails and feet with hoofs, harmful ,but whose incarnation of evil was not as strong as that of his biblical relative. Albert de Cologne is a very interesting character, known as Orthodox theologian and magician. After finishing studying at University of Cologne, he went to Paris to become a professor. He was at the same time a specialist in the exegesis of the saints writings, alchemists and occultists. A part of his correspondence with Roger Bacon, which he is said to have discovered the philosopher’s
Stone – has been found. Albert de Cologne set up his lab in his house on Rue Perdue, where he practiced magic day and night where fire burned constantly under the crucible in which he tried his secret transmutations. Despite his celebrity, the problems have not ceased to appear. Especially through one of his best disciples, Thomas d’Aquino, who, although admiring his professor, refuses to recognize “the natural magic of herbs and plants under the influence of stars.” According to the testimonies of the time, the alchemist had managed to build an artificial man’s head, able to move and answer the questions he was addressed. It is even said that the spirit of the dead and other entities spoke through this head. Following a long polemic with Thomas d’Aquino, the magician eventually destroyed his famous invention.
Later, it is said that the devil himself collaborated at the realization of two statues that represented
him, having horns very large on some portions of Notre Dame. The work was entrusted to a certain
Biscornet (the name means "two horns "), who accepted it. And at the same time he realize that the
work he was going to do was overcoming his possibilities. Therefore, went to the lab of one of Satan’s
follower and made a pact similar to Faust’s. The day the work was to be finished, the man entered in a
sort of coma. When he woke up, everyone was already excited about the beauty of the scluptures that
had appeared in an unseen matter near the gates. But when they had to be put in their place, they could not be urged. Was needed blessings with holy water and many exorcisms to solve the problem.
Biscornet died shortly after that, paying with the soul the covenant he had done with the devil. Visitors
who want to climb the spiral staircases leading to the upper floors of the famous Notre Dame cathedral will discover in an inner courtyard the sculpture of an old man. It carries a frigid hat, symbol of the “adapted” (he who obtained the philosopher’s stone), with one hand leaning against the railing and the other shaking his beard.
If we believe some occultists, the streets of Grange aux Belles and Cour des Miracles in the
Maubert district are some points of a strategic geography paradigm. It seems that in these places,
strange things happen regularly. There they can be encountered bizarre characters, murders occur,
whose authors are never found, and sometimes there are paranormal manifestations. It can often be
seen a low-witted woman with big blue eyes, with rich brown hair falling over her shoulders. Walking
hurriedly to the house of the monsieur de Sainte Croix. It is the spirit of Mary of Magdalena de
Brinvilliers, which goes to the home of her former lover. In his craving, when she lived, the beautiful
marquess prepared all sorts of poisons, which then were tested on patients in the hospitals she visited
from “charitable” spirit, offering cakes and poisoning her victims, including her father. She would
undoubtedly continue her activities if here lover had not passed (naturally) abd if the police would not
have accidentally discovered a box containing the evidence of her crimes. So the marquess was
beheaded on June 16, 1675, in Place de Greve.
The list of Paris poisoners does not stop there. In 1673, a police commissioner tried to cleanse the
wizards, Satanists, and all sorts of assassins rising in the Cour des Miracles. The arrests started the
following year, but the police job was not easy in any wayd, because the dignitaries of the court and the people with the greatest influence were at the same time the biggest consumers of potions. At the same time, there was a horrible traffic of dead bodies from cemeteries and fetuses procured from midwives.
There were black masses in the cemeteries, even some of the priests were deeply involved with the
satanic rituals. One of the most grim characters at that time was Catherine Voisin, a practitioner of
cartomancy, abortion and a serial killer, which Commissioner La Reynie has managed to condemn at
the stake on 22 February 1680. Philippe, the nephew of King Louis XIV, was also closely interested in
occult sciences and black magic, animated by the desire to meet the devil and speak to him. According to some historians (not me), he even succeeded in doing so with the help of a group of “experts,” who managed to invoke him as a big, half-naked beard whose face had some horrible scars. But Philippe de Orleans’s passion for occult science pales in front of Carol de Charolais. Some say that at night in his home on Bellefond Street they mysterious sounds and screams while strange odors floated through the air. But the wizards’ refugees were so frequent in Paris that neither police and even their neighbors no longer paid attention. While Charolais takes a heavy skin disease (probably leprosy), it a shot time, it has been done the connection between the disappearance of children and the therapy used by him, which consists of a daily bath in human blood.
Not even the revolution has succeeded in removing the devil from Paris. It is sayd that Place de
Greve, where the poeple condemned to death were executed, was the place where many phenomena
appeared. The dead spirits could be seen on Montmartre and in Catacombs - the place where large
quantities of bones were transported from the Paris cemeteries. But the most famous spirit of that
period was “the little red man,” which appeared every time a disaster fell upon the inhabitants of the
royal palace, in the form of a small devil, or as an impressive demon of mephistofelic dimensions.
Some worthy sources states that Maria Antoaneta herself heard him laugh. It looks like the entity also
appeared to announce the fall of Napoleon.
The magical history of Paris continued during Romanticism, and Victor Hugo wrote about some
spectres that even appeared in the center of the city and around the Notre Dame cathedral. Between
1860 and 1900, the taste for occult sciences, whether it be about magic, about satanism or esotericism, has taken on an edge again. Spiritism is in vogue, under the aegis of Allan Kardec, over time the tireless Huysmans published his works describing in detail the satanic rituals and the black masses he attended. At the cneter of all this general madness, Eliphas Levi published “The Dogma and the Rite of the High Magic” and fought desperately to not be confused magic with witchcraft and satanism.


I bookmark it to read it later :).


In another part I will talk about one aristocrat from France who actually spend his entire fortune trying to
summon a demon called Baron. :slight_smile: