It was a widespread practice in the area of Palestine, Syria, and Asia Minor during the fourth to the seventh centuries of the current era to use talismans written on metal sheets in order to ward off the powers of evil, to heal people, or to gain the love of a person. The common Babylonian practice of the same period was to write incantation texts on earthenware bowls. This book contains the texts of all the legible amulets in Aramaic known to date, as well as 13 hitherto unpublished bowls. This volume contains translations, commentaries, and a detailed glossary of all the words given. The study of these incantations provides a glimpse into the religious feelings and practices of common people in the Talmudic period, and enriches our knowledge of Palestinian and Babylonian Aramaic usage. This book contains a wealth of new material for the history of magic in the Near East, edited and interpreted with meticulous scholarship.
With the Logos edition, this resource is fully integrated with the rest of your digital library. Links to original language texts, dictionaries, and other historical documents—such as the Amarna Letters—are only a click away! Amulets and Magic Bowls is an important addition to the libraries of Old Testament and Near Eastern scholars, and is ideal for anyone looking to understand more deeply the historical and cultural context of the Old Testament.
Shaul Shaked is a professor of Iranian studies and comparative religion at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His research interests include Zoroastrianism religion in the Sasanian period, the transmission of symbols, themes, and ideas from Sasanian Iran to Islam, early Judeo-Persian language and literature, magical literature in late antiquity, and in early Islam.
Joseph Naveh is a professor emeritus of West Semitic Epigraphy and Paleography at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has written numerous books and articles on ancient west Semitic inscriptions and scripts.