I am looking for a well respected, demonology encyclopedia/ dictionary so that I can familiarize myself with all of the majory demons (their trates, etc). And I know this sounds really lame, but I preferably want a book that is leather bound. Any thoughts?
The Encyclopedia of Demons by Michelle Belanger. Its not leather bound though, just a common paperback, but its very useful, with the demons listed alphabetically, and information on what grimoires they are found in, and what they can be useful for. The only thing it does not provide are the sigils, except for a few that are used for illustrative purposes, but most sigils can be found online or in the source material.
Encyclopedia of Demons in World Religions by Theresa Bane is the absolute best, though it’s very expensive. Belanger just copies and pastes from readily available sources and doesn’t cover variants very well. Bane usually has separate entries for variants.
I also highly recommend the classic A Dictionary of Angels by Davidson, which is in practically every college library on earth and can usually be picked up for pennies.
All of these kinds of books rely on academic and literary sources. Nobody’s written a “Field Guide” to demons they’ve personally met before.
I DID post my own hammered out True Grimoire hierarchy a while back, but I don’t think I posted all of the notes I had on each individual spirit, which would’ve been a combination of personal experience mixed with the literary notes.
Sultitan_itan, what does a variant mean in this context?
For example, there are separate entries for Astarot, Astaroth, and Astarte. Likewise Asmodai, Ashmodai, Asmoday, Asmodeus, and Asmodeus Zavehe, treated individually. Most authors just lump them all together under one name and say, “Oh, well, it’s the same guy more or less.” The different versions of the spirit are kept distinguished.
Basically, you have a Main Archetype… Then one can create Sub-variants of said Archetype.
THE DEVIL: Satan, Lucifer, Beezelbub, Belial, Azazel, etc
SATAN: Satan, Satana, Ha-Satan
Yeah I’d side with DarkestKnight on the Bellanger book. I’ve got it, and I’m reasonably happy with it.
It dosn’t distinguish between demons and the godforms of former religions, however, with “Tyr” being a good example. Until I studied Norse mythology, I simply took for granted that s/he was a “demon” as stated in the book.
As for leather bound… I have a cloth hardback of Demonographia, but there exists a very nice leatherbound edition. I used to own one in maroon (although I believe there is a black version too, which I have not seen in person). It is what it is, really, and that’s basically a version of Pseudomonarchia Daemonum, more or less. Still, it is a useful book, has lots of classic illustrations, and although limited in scope, I really like it and appreciate it on my bookshelf.
I have quite an extensive array of esoteric books which I love to bits, but this one (and especially the leather-bound version, before I traded it for the cloth edition and a bunch of other books) is really “neat”, and I like it
Search Amazon.com and you’ll find a heap of books along this line. Any lists or searches which show Bellanger’s book(s) will be about as close as you’re going to get to what you’re after. If you’re interested in the Cardinal Kings, check out Golden Hoard’s “Sourceworks of Ceremonial Magic” series. There’s one (although the name escapes me atm) which deals with the Solomonic archangels and Demon Princes (ie, Cardinal Kings). I really like that book on account of its historical rigour, as well as the uniqe illustrations, sigils and other information concerning the Kings in particular, which can be difficult to find, or incomplete when found in other places.
I’m certainly not advertising for them, I just really appreciate the work of Dr. Stephen Skinner, David Rankine and a few of the other authors who publish through Golden Hoard.
As far as a general bestiary, however, yeah, it’s already been covered as best as you’re likely to find. I wouldn’t exclude dictionaries of angels while you’re at it, though. Lucifer is / was an angel too, remember?
Good suggestion. Belanger’s book may feature a lot of content but I agree she seems to just copy/paste other people’s work since names of the original grimoires they came from were cited and credited. I believe she does not provide sigils because Michelle is not a magician (unless secretly), she identifies as a psychic medium, an occultist (one who studies), and a somewhat demonologist.
She was on Paranormal State with Ryan Buell when Chip Coffee wasn’t available or if the case involved possible demonic threats. Although her book may come in handy, her goal was not to teach magicians how to summon or any of that, her book was for education purposes for anyone looking to understand demonic entities for whatever reason. So that’s why there are no sigils or tips for magicians. She takes a more non-magickal RHP-like approach to her work.