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Claude Lecouteux has written 13 work(s)
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Product Description: A thorough reference to the many deities, magical beings, mythical places, and ancient customs of the Norse and Germanic regions of Europe • Explores the legends and origins of well-known gods and figures such as Odin, Thor, Krampus, and the Valkyries, as well as a broad range of magical beings such as the Elf King, the Lorelei, the Perchten, dwarves, trolls, and giants • Draws upon a wealth of well-known and rare sources, such as the Poetic Edda and The Deeds of the Danes by Saxo Grammaticus • Examines folktales, myths, and magical beliefs from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, and England The legends of the Norse and Germanic regions of Europe--spanning from Germany and Austria across Scandinavia to Iceland and England--include a broad range of mythical characters and places, from Odin and Thor, to berserkers and Valhalla, to the Valkyries and Krampus...read more

Hardcover:

9781620554807 | Inner Traditions, June 25, 2016, cover price $29.95 | About this edition: A thorough reference to the many deities, magical beings, mythical places, and ancient customs of the Norse and Germanic regions of Europe • Explores the legends and origins of well-known gods and figures such as Odin, Thor, Krampus, and the Valkyries, as well as a broad range of magical beings such as the Elf King, the Lorelei, the Perchten, dwarves, trolls, and giants • Draws upon a wealth of well-known and rare sources, such as the Poetic Edda and The Deeds of the Danes by Saxo Grammaticus • Examines folktales, myths, and magical beliefs from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, and England The legends of the Norse and Germanic regions of Europe--spanning from Germany and Austria across Scandinavia to Iceland and England--include a broad range of mythical characters and places, from Odin and Thor, to berserkers and Valhalla, to the Valkyries and Krampus.

cover image for 9781620553749
Product Description: A comprehensive handbook of more than 1,000 magical words, phrases, symbols, and secret alphabets • Explains the origins, derivatives, and practical usage of each word, phrase, and spell as well as how they can be combined for custom spells • Based on the magical traditions of Europe, Greece, and Egypt and recently discovered one-of-a-kind grimoires from Scandinavia, France, and Germany • Includes an in-depth exploration of secret magical alphabets, including those based on Hebrew letters, Kabbalistic symbols, astrological signs, and runes From Abracadabra to the now famous spells of the Harry Potter series, magic words are no longer confined to the practices of pagans, alchemists, witches, and occultists...read more

Hardcover:

9781620553749 | Mul edition (Inner Traditions, October 24, 2015), cover price $35.00 | About this edition: A comprehensive handbook of more than 1,000 magical words, phrases, symbols, and secret alphabets • Explains the origins, derivatives, and practical usage of each word, phrase, and spell as well as how they can be combined for custom spells • Based on the magical traditions of Europe, Greece, and Egypt and recently discovered one-of-a-kind grimoires from Scandinavia, France, and Germany • Includes an in-depth exploration of secret magical alphabets, including those based on Hebrew letters, Kabbalistic symbols, astrological signs, and runes From Abracadabra to the now famous spells of the Harry Potter series, magic words are no longer confined to the practices of pagans, alchemists, witches, and occultists.

cover image for 9781620553992
Product Description: An exploration of the wild spirits that once roamed the lands and inhabited the waters and the pagan rites used to gain their good will • Explores medieval stories and folk traditions of brownies, fairies, giants, dragons, will-o’-the-wisps, and demons • Explains the specific rites performed to negotiate with the local spirits and ensure their permission before building on new land • Shows how these beliefs carried through to modern times, especially in architecture Our pagan ancestors knew that every forest has brownies and fairies, every spring its lady, and every river malevolent beings in its depths...read more

Paperback:

9781620553992 | 1 edition (Inner Traditions, July 20, 2015), cover price $18.95 | About this edition: An exploration of the wild spirits that once roamed the lands and inhabited the waters and the pagan rites used to gain their good will • Explores medieval stories and folk traditions of brownies, fairies, giants, dragons, will-o’-the-wisps, and demons • Explains the specific rites performed to negotiate with the local spirits and ensure their permission before building on new land • Shows how these beliefs carried through to modern times, especially in architecture Our pagan ancestors knew that every forest has brownies and fairies, every spring its lady, and every river malevolent beings in its depths.

cover image for 9781620552797
Product Description: A comprehensive study of the use of talismans and amulets in the Western Mystery Tradition • Provides an in-depth look at the medieval and Renaissance use of amulets and talismans, including the work of Agrippa, Albertus Magnus, and Athanasius Kircher • Provides a full summary of the magical knowledge required to make an amulet or talisman, including the invocations required to activate their powers • Reviews different kinds of amulets and talismans, from ancient jewelry and magical objects to the modern rabbit’s foot or lucky horseshoe The use of talismans and amulets stretches back nearly to the dawn of man, from everyday items magically prepared, such as horns or coins, to intricate and beautiful jewelry imbued with protective powers...read more

Hardcover:

9781620552797 | 1 edition (Inner Traditions, May 1, 2014), cover price $24.95 | About this edition: A comprehensive study of the use of talismans and amulets in the Western Mystery Tradition • Provides an in-depth look at the medieval and Renaissance use of amulets and talismans, including the work of Agrippa, Albertus Magnus, and Athanasius Kircher • Provides a full summary of the magical knowledge required to make an amulet or talisman, including the invocations required to activate their powers • Reviews different kinds of amulets and talismans, from ancient jewelry and magical objects to the modern rabbit’s foot or lucky horseshoe The use of talismans and amulets stretches back nearly to the dawn of man, from everyday items magically prepared, such as horns or coins, to intricate and beautiful jewelry imbued with protective powers.

cover image for 9781620551875
Product Description: An extensive study of ancient books of magic and the magical practices preserved in the few surviving grimoires • Includes spells, talisman formulations, and secret magical alphabets reproduced from the author’s private collection of grimoires, with instructions for their use • Explains the basic principles of medieval magic, including the doctrine of names and the laws of sympathy and contagion • Offers an overview of magic in the Western Mystery tradition Grimoires began simply as quick-reference “grammar books” for sorcerers, magicians, and priests before evolving into comprehensive guides to magic, complete with spell-casting rituals, magical alphabets, and instructions to create amulets and talismans...read more

Paperback:

9781620551875 | 1 edition (Inner Traditions, December 1, 2013), cover price $19.95 | About this edition: An extensive study of ancient books of magic and the magical practices preserved in the few surviving grimoires • Includes spells, talisman formulations, and secret magical alphabets reproduced from the author’s private collection of grimoires, with instructions for their use • Explains the basic principles of medieval magic, including the doctrine of names and the laws of sympathy and contagion • Offers an overview of magic in the Western Mystery tradition Grimoires began simply as quick-reference “grammar books” for sorcerers, magicians, and priests before evolving into comprehensive guides to magic, complete with spell-casting rituals, magical alphabets, and instructions to create amulets and talismans.

cover image for 9781620551059
Product Description: Examines how the ancient customs of constructing and keeping a house formed a sacred bond between homes and their inhabitants • Shares many tales of house spirits, from cajoling the local land spirit into becoming one’s house spirit to the good and bad luck bestowed by mischievous house elves • Explains the meaning behind door and window placement, house orientation, horsehead gables, the fireplace or hearth, and the threshold • Reveals the charms, chants, prayers, and building practices used by our ancestors to bestow happiness and prosperity upon their homes and their occupants Why do we hang horseshoes for good luck or place wreaths on our doors? Why does the groom carry his new bride over the threshold? These customs represent the last vestiges from a long, rich history of honoring the spirits of our homes...read more

Paperback:

9781620551059 | Inner Traditions, July 21, 2013, cover price $16.95 | About this edition: Examines how the ancient customs of constructing and keeping a house formed a sacred bond between homes and their inhabitants • Shares many tales of house spirits, from cajoling the local land spirit into becoming one’s house spirit to the good and bad luck bestowed by mischievous house elves • Explains the meaning behind door and window placement, house orientation, horsehead gables, the fireplace or hearth, and the threshold • Reveals the charms, chants, prayers, and building practices used by our ancestors to bestow happiness and prosperity upon their homes and their occupants Why do we hang horseshoes for good luck or place wreaths on our doors?

cover image for 9781594774638
Product Description: A comprehensive dictionary of sacred and magical gem lore that draws on the rarest source texts of Antiquity and the Middle Ages • Reveals the healing and magical virtues of familiar gemstones, such as amethyst, emerald, and diamond, as well as the lore surrounding exotic stones such as astrios, a stone celebrated by ancient magicians • Examines bezoars (stones formed in animals’ bodies) and “magnets” that attract materials other than metal • Based on ancient Arabic, Greek, Jewish, and European sources, ranging from the observations of Pliny the Elder to extremely rare texts such as the Picatrix and Damigeron’s Virtue of Stones Our ancestors believed stones were home to sacred beings of power, entities that if properly understood and cultivated could provide people protection from ill fortune, envy, and witchcraft; grant invisibility and other magical powers; improve memory; and heal the sick from a wide variety of diseases...read more

Hardcover:

9781594774638 | Reprint edition (Inner Traditions, December 4, 2012), cover price $26.95 | About this edition: A comprehensive dictionary of sacred and magical gem lore that draws on the rarest source texts of Antiquity and the Middle Ages • Reveals the healing and magical virtues of familiar gemstones, such as amethyst, emerald, and diamond, as well as the lore surrounding exotic stones such as astrios, a stone celebrated by ancient magicians • Examines bezoars (stones formed in animals’ bodies) and “magnets” that attract materials other than metal • Based on ancient Arabic, Greek, Jewish, and European sources, ranging from the observations of Pliny the Elder to extremely rare texts such as the Picatrix and Damigeron’s Virtue of Stones Our ancestors believed stones were home to sacred beings of power, entities that if properly understood and cultivated could provide people protection from ill fortune, envy, and witchcraft; grant invisibility and other magical powers; improve memory; and heal the sick from a wide variety of diseases.

cover image for 9781594774652
Product Description: What poltergeist accounts through the ages reveal about our own worldviews • Provides a wide array of case studies from ancient Greece and Rome to medieval Europe to the modern world • Explores the relationship between poltergeists and troubled adolescence • Looks beneath the Christian adulteration of pagan practices to reveal the hidden ancestral beliefs tied to poltergeists and haunted houses Stories of poltergeists and their mischievous and sometimes violent actions--knocking, stone or chair throwing, moving objects with invisible hands, and slamming or opening doors--are a constant through the ages...read more

Paperback:

9781594774652 | Inner Traditions, April 26, 2012, cover price $18.95 | About this edition: What poltergeist accounts through the ages reveal about our own worldviews • Provides a wide array of case studies from ancient Greece and Rome to medieval Europe to the modern world • Explores the relationship between poltergeists and troubled adolescence • Looks beneath the Christian adulteration of pagan practices to reveal the hidden ancestral beliefs tied to poltergeists and haunted houses Stories of poltergeists and their mischievous and sometimes violent actions--knocking, stone or chair throwing, moving objects with invisible hands, and slamming or opening doors--are a constant through the ages.

An exploration of the many forms of the ancient myth of the Wild Hunt and its influence in pagan and early Christian Europe • Recounts the myriad variations of this legend, from the Cursed Huntsman and King Herla to phantom armies and vast processions of sinners and demons • Explains how this belief was an integral part of the pagan worldview and was thus employed by the church to spread Christian doctrine • Reveals how the secret societies of medieval Europe reenacted these ghostly processions for soul travel and prophecies of impending death Once upon a time a phenomenon existed in medieval Europe that continuously fueled local lore: during the long winter nights a strange and unknown troop could be heard passing outside over the land or through the air. Anyone caught by surprise in the open fields or depths of the woods would see a bizarre procession of demons, giants, hounds, ladies of the night, soldiers, and knights, some covered in blood and others carrying their heads beneath their arms. This was the Wild or Infernal Hunt, the host of the damned, the phantom army of the night--a theme that still inspires poets, writers, and painters to this day. Millennia older than Christianity, this pagan belief was employed by the church to spread their doctrine, with the shapeshifters' and giants of the pagan nightly processions becoming sinners led by demons seeking out unwary souls to add to their retinues. Myth or legend, it represents a belief that has deep roots in Europe, particularly Celtic and Scandinavian countries. The first scholar to fully examine this myth in each of its myriad forms, Claude Lecouteux strips away the Christian gloss and shows how the Wild Hunt was an integral part of the pagan worldview and the structure of their societies. Additionally, he looks at how secret societies of medieval Europe reenacted these ghostly processions through cult rituals culminating in masquerades and carnival-like cavalcades often associated with astral doubles, visions of the afterlife, belief in multiple souls, and prophecies of impending death. He reveals how the nearly infinite variations of this myth are a still living, evolving tradition that offers us a window into the world in which our ancestors lived.

Paperback:

9781594774362 | Inner Traditions, August 16, 2011, cover price $18.95 | About this edition: An exploration of the many forms of the ancient myth of the Wild Hunt and its influence in pagan and early Christian Europe • Recounts the myriad variations of this legend, from the Cursed Huntsman and King Herla to phantom armies and vast processions of sinners and demons • Explains how this belief was an integral part of the pagan worldview and was thus employed by the church to spread Christian doctrine • Reveals how the secret societies of medieval Europe reenacted these ghostly processions for soul travel and prophecies of impending death Once upon a time a phenomenon existed in medieval Europe that continuously fueled local lore: during the long winter nights a strange and unknown troop could be heard passing outside over the land or through the air.

Miscellaneous:

9781594778063 | Inner Traditions, August 23, 2011, cover price $18.95

A look at the forgotten ancestors of the modern-day vampire, many of which have very different characteristics • Looks at the many ancestoral forms of the modern vampire, including shroud eaters, appesarts, and stafi • Presents evidence for the reality of this phenomenon from pre-19th-century newspaper articles and judicial records Of all forms taken by the undead, the vampire wields the most powerful pull on the modern imagination. But the countless movies and books inspired by this child of the night who has a predilection for human blood are based on incidents recorded as fact in newspapers and judicial archives in the centuries preceding the works of Bram Stoker and other writers. Digging through these forgotten records, Claude Lecouteux unearths a very different figure of the vampire in the many accounts of individuals who reportedly would return from their graves to attack the living. These ancestors of the modern vampire were not all blood suckers; they included shroud eaters, appesarts, nightmares, and the curious figure of the stafia, whose origin is a result of masons secretly interring the shadow of a living human being in the wall of a building under construction. As Lecouteux shows, the belief in vampires predates ancient Roman times, which abounded with lamia, stirges, and ghouls. Discarding the tacked together explanations of modern science for these inexplicable phenomena, the author looks back to another folk belief that has come down through the centuries like that of the undead: the existence of multiple souls in every individual, not all of which are able to move on to the next world after death.

Paperback:

9781594773259 | Inner Traditions, February 1, 2010, cover price $16.95 | About this edition: A look at the forgotten ancestors of the modern-day vampire, many of which have very different characteristics • Looks at the many ancestoral forms of the modern vampire, including shroud eaters, appesarts, and stafi • Presents evidence for the reality of this phenomenon from pre-19th-century newspaper articles and judicial records Of all forms taken by the undead, the vampire wields the most powerful pull on the modern imagination.

Miscellaneous:

9781594776847, titled "Secret History of Vampires: Their Multiple Forms and Hidden Purposes" | Inner Traditions, August 23, 2011, cover price $16.95

How the ghost stories of pagan times reveal the seamless union existing between the world of the living and the afterlife • Demonstrates how Medieval Christianity transformed the more corporeal ghost encountered in pagan cultures with the disembodied form known today • Explains how the returning dead were once viewed as either troublemakers or guarantors of the social order The impermeable border the modern world sees existing between the world of the living and the afterlife was not visible to our ancestors. The dead could--and did--cross back and forth at will. The pagan mind had no fear of death, but some of the dead were definitely to be dreaded: those who failed to go peacefully into the afterlife but remained on this side in order to right a wrong that had befallen them personally or to ensure that the law promoted by the ancestors was being respected. But these dead individuals were a far cry from the amorphous ectoplasm that is featured in modern ghost stories. These earlier visitors from beyond the grave--known as revenants--slept, ate, and fought like men, even when, like Klaufi of the Svarfdaela Saga, they carried their heads in their arms. Revenants were part of the ancestor worship prevalent in the pagan world and still practiced in indigenous cultures such as the Fang and Kota of equatorial Africa, among others. The Church, eager to supplant this familial faith with its own, engineered the transformation of the corporeal revenant into the disembodied ghost of modern times, which could then be easily discounted as a figment of the imagination or the work of the devil. The sanctified grounds of the church cemetery replaced the burial mounds on the family farm, where the ancestors remained as an integral part of the living community. This exile to the formal graveyard, ironically enough, has contributed to the great loss of the sacred that characterizes the modern world.

Paperback:

9781594773181 | Inner Traditions, July 24, 2009, cover price $19.95 | About this edition: How the ghost stories of pagan times reveal the seamless union existing between the world of the living and the afterlife • Demonstrates how Medieval Christianity transformed the more corporeal ghost encountered in pagan cultures with the disembodied form known today • Explains how the returning dead were once viewed as either troublemakers or guarantors of the social order The impermeable border the modern world sees existing between the world of the living and the afterlife was not visible to our ancestors.

Miscellaneous:

9781594776830, titled "Return of the Dead: Ghosts, Ancestors, and the Transparent Veil of the Pagan Mind" | Inner Traditions, August 23, 2011, cover price $19.95

cover image for 9780892810963
Product Description: Reveals the true nature of medieval belief in the Double of the Soul • Demonstrates the survival of a pagan belief that each individual owns three souls, including a double that can journey outside the physical body • Explains the nature of death and the Other World hidden beneath the monsters and superstitions in stories from the Middle Ages Monsters, werewolves, witches, and fairies remain a strong presence in our stories and dreams...read more

Paperback:

9780892810963 | 1 edition (Inner Traditions, July 23, 2003), cover price $16.95 | About this edition: Reveals the true nature of medieval belief in the Double of the Soul • Demonstrates the survival of a pagan belief that each individual owns three souls, including a double that can journey outside the physical body • Explains the nature of death and the Other World hidden beneath the monsters and superstitions in stories from the Middle Ages Monsters, werewolves, witches, and fairies remain a strong presence in our stories and dreams.

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