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De Profundis

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  • De Profundis

    Just to let you know what I've been doing over the last couple of weeks -

    I've trawled through all the grimoires I can find and so far there is no uterus recipe

    I only found one reference to making a sacrificial knife to be used in cutting the throats and for removing flesh from the victims

    I will be able to post a list soon of all the books searched so far so the list can be added to if possible

    There seems tol be much more material within the study of the Patriarchal/Matriarchal rivalry for the establishment of a church/religion in the early Christian period - of which RDS was a student

    This includes the Patriarchs denying the mortal aspects of Christ's birth by "rejecting" the womb and professing a Virgin birth etc

    In consequence, the womb became an object of "attack"

    I'll get some quotes together regarding this aspect



  • #2
    Life Ain't Fair Reason.. #216

    Dear Nemo:

    Stephensonian researchers have always faced the least savory "job" in my view...that being to have to indulge in reading that ridiculous gibberish to find or disprove claims relative to the alleged black magic aspect of Stephenson. I am being totally sincere when I mention that I used to get awful headaches from simply reading them. I think its because its so hard to make sense of this...this...poop.

    When one studies Tumblety, one has to deal with the bombastic comments made by him or in reference to him. Thats small potatoes when compared to having to read about some yoyo in a robe pretending to be Baphomet's designated disciple.
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    • #3
      Yes - There is certainly no relevant reference within texts indicated by RDS himself (Levi/a French text translated 1887-1888 etc) so I have located evry grimoire type text that could possibly be available to RDS in case he was mistaken in his references (likely in my opinion)

      I'm only researching Hermetic magic at the moment but I would probably have to move on to African shamanism (Obeah) and Caribbean derivatives (Voudon/Voodoo) to absolutely confirm that RDS had not come across a uterus recipe within published texts

      It's made slightly more difficult because such a recipe would almost certainly be veiled within the text and RDS - if he was an advanced magician - would have been more than able to apply occult principles and come up with his own recipe for some relative purpose


      • #4
        Hi all

        I found the necessary text that RDS is referring to

        I got a bit off track in searching for various editions of the "Key of Solomon" that was translated in 1888 - due to the assumption that the work by Eliphas Levi that RDS refers to in 1888, was not translated into English until 1896

        The only relevant grimoire you need to possibly refer to is "Le Petit Albert" that included a recipe for producing a "Hand of Glory" or "soporific candle"

        To explain where RDS got his ideas from, let’s have a look again at what he said…

        December 1888 - Pall Mall Gazette
        The Whitechapel Demon’s Nationality: and Why He Commited the Murders
        by One Who Thinks He Knows

        Now, in one of the books by the great modern occultist who wrote under the nom de plume of `Eliphaz Levy', `Le Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie,' we find the most elaborate directions for working magical spells of all kinds. The second volume has a chapter on Necromancy, or black magic, which the author justly denounces as a profanation. Black magic employs the agencies of evil spirits and demons, instead of the beneficent spirits directed by the adepts of la haute magie. At the same time he gives the clearest and fullest details of the necessary steps for evocation by this means, and it is in the list of substances prescribed as absolutely necessary to success that we find the link which joins modern French necromancy with the quest of the East-end murderer. These substances are in themselves horrible, and difficult to procure. They can only be obtained by means of the most appalling crimes, of which murder and mutilation of the dead are the least heinous. Among them are strips of the skin of a suicide, nails from a murderer's gallows, candles made from human fat, the head of a black cat which has been fed forty days on human flesh, the horns of a goat which has been made the instrument of an infamous capital crime, and a preparation made from a certain portion of the body of a harlot. This last point is insisted upon as essential and it was this extra-ordinary fact that first drew my attention to the possible connection of the murderer with the black art.

        To those persons to whom this theory may seem somewhat far-fetched, we would merely remark that the French book referred to was only published a few years ago; that thousands of copies were sold; that societies have been formed for the study and practice of its teachings and philosophy; and, finally, that within the last twelve months an English edition has been issued. In all things history repeats itself, and the superstitions of yesterday become the creeds of today.

        D’Onston is here referring to the following passage from the book by Eliphas Levi…

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        Conditions of Success in Infernal Evocations
        (1) Invincible obstinacy; (2) a conscience at once hardened to crime and most prone to remorse and fear; (3) affected or natural ignorance; (4) blind faith in all that is incredible; (5) an utterly false idea of God.
        We must afterwards (1) profane the ceremonies of the cultus in which we
        believe; (2) offer a bloody sacrifice; (3) procure the magic fork, which is a branch of a single bough of hazel or almond, cut at one blow with the new knife used for the sacrifice. It must terminate in a fork, which must be armoured with iron or steel, made from the blade of the knife before mentioned. A fast of fifteen days must be observed, taking a single unsalted repast after sundown. It should consist of black bread and blood, seasoned with unsalted spices or black beans and milky and narcotic herbs. We must get drunk every five days after sundown on wine in
        which five heads of black poppies and five ounces of pounded hemp-seed have been steeped for five hours, the infusion being strained through a cloth woven by a prostitute: strictly speaking, the first cloth which comes to hand may be used, should it have been woven by a woman. The evocation should be performed on the night between Monday and Tuesday, or that between Friday and Saturday. a solitary and forbidden spot must be chosen, such as a cemetery haunted by evil spirits, a dreaded ruin in the country, the vaults of an abandoned convent, a place
        where some murder has been committed, a druidic altar or an old temple of idols. A black seamless and sleeveless robe must be provided; a leaden cap emblazoned with the signs of the moon, Venus and Saturn; two candles of human fat set in black wooden candlesticks, carved in the shape of a crescent; two crowns of vervain; a magical sword with a black handle; the magical fork; a copper vase containing the blood of the victim; a censer holding perfumes, namely, incense, camphor, aloes, ambergris and storax, mixed together with the blood of a goat, a
        mole and a bat; four nails taken from the coffin of an executed criminal; the head of a black cat which has been nourished on human flesh for five days; a bat drowned in blood; the horns of a goat cum quo puella concuberit; and the skull of a parricide. All these hideous objects – though scarcely possible to obtain – having been collected, they must be arranged as follows: a perfect circle is traced by the sword, leaving, however, a break, or point of issue, on one side; a triangle is drawn in the circle, and the Pantacle thus formed is coloured with blood; a chafing-
        dish is placed at one of its angles, and this should have been included among the indispensable objects already enumerated. At the opposite base of the triangle three little circles are described for the sorcerer and his two assistants; behind that of the first the sign of the Labarum or monogram of Constantine is drawn, not with the blood of the victim, but with the operator's own blood. He and his assistants must have bare feet and covered heads. The skin of the immolated victim must be brought also to the spot and, being cut into strips, must be placed within the circle, thus forming a second and inner circle, fixed at four corners by four
        nails from the coffin mentioned already. Hard by the nails but outside the circle, must be placed the head of the cat, the human or rather inhuman skull, the horns of the goat, and the bat. They must be sprinkled with a branch of birch dipped in the blood of the victim, and then a fire of cypress and alderwood must be lighted, the two magical candles being placed on the right and left of the operator, encircled with the wreaths of vervain.

        The first anomaly appears to be that this work by Eliphas Levi was not translated (in its entirety) into English until 1896 (A.E.Waite)

        However, I found that a “digest” of Levi’s writings was translated and published at an earlier date

        Specifically, A.E.Waite published the following work in 1886…

        Levi, Eliphas (Alphonse Louis Constant).
        The Mysteries Of Magic, A Digest Of The Writings Of Eliphas Levi.
        London: Rebman, 1886. FIRST EDITION. With Biographical & Critical Essay By W. E. Waite. 349p. Octavo.

        A second edition appeared in 1888

        This contains the full passage from Levi quoted above and must be the book D’Onston is referring to.

        In regards to the organ from a harlot, D’Onston has either made a mistake here, possibly in translation from the French, or else he is exaggerating the importance of the reference to the portion of the body of a harlot

        The original French text refers to straining a concoction of herbs through a piece of linen woven BY a female prostitute. The word used for linen is “linge”.

        A.E.Waite’s translation reads as “…a cloth woven BY a female prostitute”. In translating “cloth” back into French, we get “tissu”, which D’Onston could possibly have read as referring to an “organ” OF a female prostitute.

        Also, D’Onston implies that the organ is part of the list of items necessary for creating the magic circle. On re-reading Levi’s instructions, we find that is not the case.

        However, D’Onston may be correct in his suggestion that an organ from a prostitute may be required for the “infernal evocation” in that two candles made from human fat were required.

        References to “thiefs” or “thieves” candles, “corpse” candles and “soporific” candles had appeared in the press and other publications throughout 1888

        D’Onston’s only ”new” suggestion was that the candles made from human fat were to be utilized in evoking demons rather than for causing everyone in a house to fall asleep for purposes of theft

        Flesh from a murdered victim, or that of an executed felon was often used in making the candles. The most sought after (powerful) substance was that gained from a baby – preferably an unbaptised baby. Thus arose the crime of removing the womb of a pregnant female to gain the body of the unborn infant from which fat was rendered.

        The prevalence of the stories/theories is evident from the following quotes…

        Jan 1888

        Anthropological notes on the human hand
        Frank Baker M.D. Professor of Anatomy University of Georgetown Washington D.C.
        (Publication of the American anthropological Association)

        “The corpse of the murdered man had been mutilated, and it was shown on the trial that Berger had cut out a piece to make a " thief's candle”

        Also within this text were reports of criminals raiding paupers' graves to obtain hands or arms that had curative effects when laid on afflicted parts of the patient's body

        The Star
        LONDON. TUESDAY, 9 OCTOBER, 1888.

        A Suggestion from Vienna.

        A Vienna correspondent states that Dr. Bloch, a member of the Austrian Reichsrath, has called his attention to certain facts which may throw a new light on the Whitechapel murders. In various German criminal codes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, as also in statutes of a more recent date, punishments are prescribed for the mutilation of female corpses, with the object of making from the uterus and other organs "thieves' candles" or "soporitic candles." According to an old superstition, still rife in various parts of Germany, the light from such candles will throw those upon whom it falls into the deepest slumbers, and they may, consequently, become a valuable instrument to the thieving profession. At the trial of the notorious German robber Theodor Unger, surnamed "the handsome Charley," who was executed at Magdeburg, in 1810, it transpired that a regular manufactory had been established by gangs of thieves, for the production of such candles. That this superstition has survived amongst German thieves to the present day was proved in a case tried at Biala, in Galicia, as recently as 1875.

        London, U.K.
        9 October 1888


        A Vienna Correspondent calls attention, in connection with the Whitechapel murders, to a strange superstition among German thieves, which survives in some quarters even to the present day. In various German criminal codes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, as also in statutes of a more recent date, punishment are prescribed for the mutilation of female corpses, with the object of making from the uterus and other organs the so-called Diebslichler or Schlafslichter, respectively "thieves' candles" or "soporific candles." According to an old superstition, still rife in various parts of Germany, the light from such candles will throw those upon whom it falls into the deepest slumbers, and they may, consequently, become a valuable instrument to the thieving profession. Hence their name. At one time there was a regular manufactory of such candles. That this superstition has survived amongst German thieves to the present day was proved by a case tried at Biala, in Galicia, as recently as 1875. In this the body of a woman had been found mutilated in precisely the same way as were the victims of the Whitechapel murderer.

        Arizona Republican
        9 June 1893

        Some years ago an attempted robbery was made by burglars on an estate in the county Meath, and, to quote a contemporary account of the affair, "they entered the house armed with a dead man's hand, with a lighted candle in it, believing that a candle so placed will not be seen by any but those by whom it is used, and also that if a candle in a dead man's hand be introduced in a house it will prevent those who may be asleep from awakening. The inmates, however, were alarmed; the robbers fled, leaving the dead man's hand behind them."

        Then there is the corpse candle, a weird implement of the robber's trade, which, although common throughout Europe, seems to have been more general in Germany than any other country. Not so long ago, it may be remembered, four peasants in the south Russian government of Kursk murdered a girl in order to make candles of her body, the notion being that such a hideous light not only renders the perpetrators of robberies invisible, but actually throws the victim or victims into a state of somnolence. In the German criminal codes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries we find express mention made of penalties against a crime the motive of which was the making of "thieves" or "sleep producing" candles. This superstition has figured in many a trial, and seems to be, even to the present day, implicitly believed in by the criminal classes. Indeed, it was suggested that the Whitechapel murders were instigated by this idea - a theory which the celebrated Dr. Bloch, a member of the Austrian reichsrath, was induced to support. An instance of this piece of criminal lore occurred during the trial of the German thief, Theodore Unger, who was executed at Magdeburg in 1810, when it was brought out in evidence that a regular traffic existed for the supply of these grewsome implements of the burglar's trade. But, instead of making the criminal invisible, this grim light has more than once done the reverse, and caused him to be brought to justice.

        Evening News
        London, U.K.
        25 October 1888


        On October 16, we published a summary of two letters on the Ritter trial, one from Dr. Josef S. Bloch, member of the Austrian Parliament, and the other, also from Vienna, from a "Lawyer of Twenty Years' Standing." Dr. Bloch denied and the other correspondent affirmed the existence among the low-class Jews of Galicia of a superstition such as would account for the mutilations of the body of the woman for whose murder the Ritters were tried, and, it has been suggested, for the mutilations in the case of the Whitechapel murders. Dr. Adolf Stein, of Vienna, who acted as counsel for Ritter and his wife, now writes strongly corroborating Dr. Bloch's view of the case, and adding that, though the superstitions of thieves were mentioned at the trial, it was never asserted that the superstitution (sic) was Jewish. Dr. Gotthelf Carl Mayer also writes from Vienna to the same effect, and states that the superstition in question was never proved at the trial as existing among the low-class Jews of Galicia, and that the Ritters were finally acquitted by the Supreme Tribunal on the merits of the case, and not because the only witness against them had died in prison.

        Davenport Morning Tribune
        Iowa, U.S.A.
        27 January 1889

        Curious Russian Superstition
        A curiously unpleasant peasant superstition has just been revealed at a trial in Southern Russia, which ended in the conviction of four peasants for the murder of a girl 11 years old. The superstition recalls that about thieves' candles narrated in connection with the Whitechapel murders. These peasants, it seems, were believers in the superstition that candles made of human fat rendered the bearers invisible. To obtain these articles they first attempted to murder a boy in a forest. They next tried to kill an old peasant, thirdly a Russian clergyman, and being disturbed on all three occasions they at last succeeded in murdering Sukena Cherkaschina. With the fat from the child's body they made candles, and with their help attempted to commit a robbery. The light of the candles betrayed their doings, and on being arrested they confessed everything. The evidence in court showed the belief in the thieves' candle superstition to be widespread in Russia.


        • #5
          Great work as always Nemo!!


          • #6
            Thanks Mike

            It really is of no relevance checking older assorted grimoires

            I've checked practically every grimoire available and also patristic and alchemical literature from the period

            None contain any reference even to Goetia and certainly not to portions of the body of a harlot

            Some patristic texts point out that the womb itself is a target of attack verbally in that the virgin birth denies to an extent the power of the woman to give life etc etc but it is not particularly relevant to what RDS was trying to suggest

            The crux of the matter seems to be that the theory that a criminal was attempting to gain an unborn infant for use in making candles could actually be viable

            One thing against this might be that the women would not be assumed to be pregnant - but the candle could have been made from the fat of the murder victim anyway, while removing the uterus gives the miscreant a chance of obtaining a foetus

            It could be construed as having possible relevance to the Kelly case wherein she may have been suspected as being pregnant

            Profaning the Christian Cross, commiting criminal acts and removing flesh from victims in order to make candles - these could actually point toward a Black magician attempting to recreate the Goetic circle and evoke a demon, possibly Lucifer himself

            Alternatively, the Ripper and possible accomplices may have been thieves intent on manufacturing a "Hand of Glory"

            I would suggest that knowledge of the candle does seem more prevalent in continental Europe and could possibly point to a German/Russian origin


            • #7
              During our recent visit to Whitby I wanted to see the genuine "Hand of Glory" in the Whitby Museum, but we just didn't have time. I have a few news reports on the usage of human matter to make candles, but they centre around the Vienna case that you published earlier.


              • #8
                You should get a pic of it for your book Mike - I was just reading about the one in the Whitby collection

                It says it's one of their most popular exhibits!

                I think these are all pics of the same hand in Whitby...

                There's a number of good references to "Hands of Glory" - some of them differ in that sometimes the fingers are lit - one for each person in the house - others have wicks attached to the fingers - in other cases, a candle is manufactured and placed in the fingers of the mummified hand thus...


                ...on which site you will find the following quotes referring to the superstition...

                Thomas Ingoldsby (1788-1845) wrote the following verse in his The Ingoldsby Legends:

                Wherever that terrible light shall burn,
                Vainly the sleeper may toss and turn;
                His leaden eyes shall he ne'r unclose
                So long as that magical taper glows,
                Life and treasure shall he command
                Who knoweth the charm of the glorious Hand.

                The passage below, written in rhyming verse, is also taken from The Ingoldsby Legendes (R.H. Barham's version, 1840).

                "On the lone bleak moor, At the midnight hour,
                Beneath the Gallows Tree,
                Hand in Hand, The Murderers stand,
                By one, by two, by three,
                Now mount who list, And close by the wrist,
                Sever me quickly, the Dead Man's fist,
                Now climb who dare, Where he swings in air,
                And pluck me five locks of the Dead Man's Hair!"


                • #9
                  It was the Abbey or the hand, and we chose the Abbey as it was a really hot day, and the weather was lovely.

                  We plan on returning and I would love to get some pictures, and a photo of the witch posts that are popular in the region. I have spent a lot of time on the North York Moors listening to folk tales and have a large collection of books on North Yorkshire Myths and Legends. Coincidently, one of the books I have called "Ghosts and Legends of Yorkshire" features the Dead or Alive Stephenson story!


                  • #10
                    Home Sweet Home: Whitby Abbey

                    Hi, Mike & Paul.

                    I really want to go to Whitby some day; I'm descended from the noble family that actually lived at Whitby Abbey, the Cholmelys.

                    (Also spelled other ways, like "Chomondley")

                    Pretty cool that Bram Stoker used the old family home in Dracula!!

                    I also collect antique Whitby Jet jewelry; maybe I inherited my taste for it?
                    ************************************************** *

                    A Word From The Baron Of Grey Matter:

                    Hey Toots ! I'm the only scion of royalty on this damned site ! Show your particulars and credentials on your thread which outline your bloodline ( and we better not be related...) a.s.a.p.

                    How Brown


                    • #11
                      If RDS was in any way correct in that the Ripper was seeking some flesh to make candles which were part of a collection of items that enabled a magician to summon Lucifer, is it coincidental that he then moved on to become the lover of one of the very few women who could and probably would provide him with the horns of a goat cum quo puella concuberit?


                      • #12
                        Dear Nemo:

                        I'm not following what you mean here....when possible please explain.

                        Are you stating that Collins had access to something he couldn't obtain ? Because by the time these two were friends...Collins and Blatvatsky were on the outs....
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                        • #13
                          Annie Deary/Stephenson's father Charles was a farmer, if Stephenson wanted a horny goat, I am sure his father in law could have sorted something.


                          • #14
                            Hi Howard

                            I've seen some implications that Mabel Collins had some very strong magico-sexual beliefs practicing Tantrism etc

                            I interpret some of the implications as that she was up for Satanic rituals and was keen on Black Magic - it's not nice to contemplate but I noticed a hint that she possibly had a consummated relationship with a ritual goat, though this may have been propoganda type information produced by Blavatsky & Co....


                            • #15

                              No doubt Nemo is hip to the fact that Deary was part of his life a decade before they were married in 1876. In 1867, Deary testified at the Customs House hearing on his behalf.
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