Wednesday 6 January 2021

Nuctemeron 2


Extracted from the ancient Talmud termed Mischna by the Jews

The Nuctemeron of Apollonius, borrowed from Greek theurgy, completed and explained by the Assyrian hierarchy of genii, perfectly corresponds to the philosophy of numbers as we find it expounded in the most curious pages of the Talmud. Thus, the Pythagoreans go back further than Pythagoras ; thus, Genesis is a magnificent allegory, which, under the form of a narrative, conceals the secrets not only of the creation achieved of old, but of permanent and universal creation, the eternal generation of beings. "We read as follows in the Talmud : " God hath stretched out the heaven like a tabernacle ; He hath spread the world like a table richly dight ; and He hath created man as if He invited a guest." Listen now to the words of the King Schlomoh : " The divine Chocmah, Wisdom, the Bride of God, hath built a house unto herself, and hath dressed two pillars. She hath immolated her victims, she hath mingled her wine, she hath spread the table, and
she hath despatched her servitors." This Wisdom, who builds her house according to a regular and numerical
architecture, is that exact science which rules in the works of God. It is His compass and His square. The seven pillars are the seven typical and primordial days. The victims are natural forces which are propagated by undergoing a species of death. Mingled wine is the universal fluid, the table is the world with the waters full of fishes. The servants of Chocmah are the souls of Adam and of Chavah (Eve). The earth of which Adam was formed was taken from the entire mass of the world. His head is Israel, his body the empire of Babylon, and his limbs are the other nations of the earth. (Here manifest the aspirations of the initiates of Moses towards a universal oriental kingdom.) Now, there are twelve hours in the day of man's creation.

First Hour:
God combines the scattered fragments of earth ; he kneads them together, and forms one mass, which it is his will to animate.

Man is the synthesis of the created world ; in him recurs the creative unity ; he is made in the image and likeness of God.

Second Hour:
God designs the form of the body ; he separates it into two sections, so that the organs may be double, for all force and all life result from two, and it is thus the Elohim made all things.

Everything lives by movement, everything is maintained by equilibrium, and harmony results from the analogy of contraries ; this law is the form of forms, the first manifestation of the activity and fecundity of God.

Third Hour:
The limbs of man, obeying the law of life, manifest of themselves and are completed by the generative organ,
which is composed of one and two, figure of the triadic number.

The triad issues spontaneously from the duad ; the movement which produces two also produces three ; three is the key of numbers, for it is the first numeral synthesis ; in geometry it is the triangle, the first complete and enclosed figure, generatrix of an infinity of triangles, whether like or

Fourth Hour:
God breathes upon the face of man and imparts to him a soul.

The tetrad, which geometrically gives the cross and the square, is the perfect number ; now, it is in perfection of form that the intelligent soul manifests ; according to this revelation of the Mischna, the child would not become animated in the mother's womb till after the complete formation of all its members.

Fifth Hour:
Man stands upon his feet, he is weaned from earth, he walks and goes where he will.

The number five is that of the soul, typified by the quintessence which results from the equilibrium of the four elements ; in the Tarot this number is represented by the high-priest or spiritual autocrat, type of the human will, that high-priestess who alone decides our eternal destinies.

Sixth Hour:
The animals pass before Adam, and he gives a suitable name to each.

Man by toil subdues the earth and overcomes the animals ; by the manifestation of his liberty he produces his word or speech in the environment which obeys him; herein primordial creation is completed. God formed man on the sixth day, but at the sixth hour of the day man fulfils the work of God, and to some extent recreates himself, by enthroning himself as king of nature, which he subjects by his speech.

Seventh Hour:
God gives Adam a companion brought forth out of the man's own substance.

When God had created man in his own image, He rested on the seventh day, for He had given unto Himself a fruitful bride who would unceasingly work for Him ; nature is the bride of God, and God rests on her. Man, becoming creator in his turn by means of the word, gives himself a companion like unto himself, on whose love he may lean henceforth ; woman is the work of man ; by loving her, he makes her beautiful, and he also makes her a mother ; woman is true human nature, daughter and mother of man, granddaughter and grandmother of God.

Eighth Hour:
Adam and Eve enter the nuptial bed ; they are two when they lie down, and when they arise they are four.

The tetrad joined to the tetrad represents form balancing form, creation issuing from creation, the eternal equipoise of life ; seven being the number of God's rest, the unity which follows it signifies man, who toils and co-operates with nature in the work of creation.

Ninth Hour:
God imposes his law on man.

Nine is the number of initiation, because, being composed of three times three, it represents the divine idea and the absolute philosophy of numbers, for which reason Apollonius says that the mysteries of the number nine are not to be revealed.

Tenth Hour:
At the tenth hour Adam falls into sin.

According to the kabbalist ten is the number of matter, of which the special sign is zero ; in the tree of the
sephiroth ten represents Malchuth, or exterior and material substance ; the sin of Adam is therefore materialism, and the fruit which he plucks from the tree represents flesh isolated from spirit, zero separated from unity, the schism of the number ten, giving on the one side a despoiled unity and on the other nothingness and death.

Eleventh Hour:
At the eleventh hour the sinner is condemned to labour, and to expiate his sin by suffering.

In the Tarot, eleven represents force, which is acquired through trials ; God sends man pain as a means of salvation, and hence he must strive and endure that he may conquer intelligence and life.

Twelfth Hour:
Man and woman undergo their sentence ; the expiation begins, and the liberator is promised.

Such is the completion of moral birth ; man is fulfilled, for he is dedicated to the sacrifice which regenerates ; the exile of Adam is like that of Oedipus ; like Oedipus he becomes the father of two enemies, but the daughter of Oedipus is the pious and virginal Antigone, while Mary issues from the race of Adam.


 This translation and interpretation by Levi is in the public domain. So I hope it serves as a useful resource for others trying to track down some of the genii in NAP.


p.s. if someone else has a copy of the original Nuctemeron or anything else to add - e.g. information on the Assyrian hierarchy of genii from which they are allegedly derived - please do so in this thread.

Translated and interpreted by Eliphas Levi

The Greek text was first published after an ancient manuscript, by Gilbert Gautrinus, in De Vita et Morte Moysis, Lib. III., p. 206 ; and subsequently reproduced by Laurent Moshemius in his Sacred and Historico-Oitical Observations. Amsterdam, 1721. Translated and interpreted for the first time by Eliphas Levi.

NUCTEMERON signifies the day of the night or the night illumined by day. It is analogous to the " Light Issuing from Darkness," which is the title of a well-known Hermetic work. It may also be translated THE LIGHT OF OCCULTISM. This monument of transcendent Assyrian magic is sufficiently curious to make it superfluous to enlarge on its importance. We have not merely evoked Apollonius, we have possibly resuscitated him.


The First Hour.
In unity, the demons chant the praises of God ; they lose their malice and fury.

The Second Hour.
By the duad, the Zodiacal fish chant the praises of God ; the fiery serpents interlace about the caduceus, and the lightning becomes liarmonous.

The Third Hour.
The serpents of the Hermetic caduceus entwine three times ; Cerberus opens his triple jaw, and fire chants the praises of God with the three tongues of the lightning.

The Fourth Hour.
At the fourth hour the soul revisits the tombs ; the magical lamps are lighted at the four corners of the circle ; it is the time of enchantments and illusions.

The Fifth Hour.
The voice of the great waters celebrates the God of the heavenly

The Sixth Hour.
The spirit believes itself immovable ; it beholds the infernal monsters swarm down upon it, and does not fear.

The Seventh Hour.
A fire, which imparts life to all animated beings, is directed by the will of pure men. The initiate stretches forth his hand, and pains are assuaged.

The Eighth Hour.
The stars utter speech to one another ; the soul of the suns corresponds with the exhalation of the flowers; chains of harmony create correspondence between all natural things.

The Ninth Hour.
The number which must not be divulged.

The Tenth Hour.
The key of the astronomical cycle and of the circular movement of human life.

The Eleventh Hour.
The wings of the genii move with a mysterious and deep murmur; they fly from sphere to sphere, and bear the messages of God from world to world.

The Twelfth Hour.
The works of the light eternal are fulfilled by fire.


THESE twelve symbolical hours, analogous to the signs of the magical Zodiac and to the allegorical labours of Hercules, represent the schedule of the works of initiation. It is necessary therefore (1) To overcome evil passions, and, according to the expression of the wise Hierophant, compel the demons themselves to praise God. (2) To study the balanced forces of nature, and know how harmony results from the analogy of contraries ; to know also the great magical agent and the twofold polarisation of the universal light. (3) To gain initiation into the triadic principle of all theogonies and all religious symbols. (4) To know how to overcome all phantoms of imagination, and triumph over all illusions. (5) To understand after what manner universal harmony is produced in the centre of the four elementary forces. (6) To become inaccessible to fear. (7) To practise the direction of the magnetic light. (8) To learn prevision of effects by the calculus of the balance of causes. (9) To understand the hierarchy of instruction, to respect the mysteries of dogma, and to keep silence in presence of the profane. (10) To study astronomy exhaustively. (11) To become initiated by analogy into the laws of universal life and intelligence. (12) To fulfil the great works of nature by direction of the light.

Here follow the names and attributions of the genii who preside over the twelve hours of the Nuctemeron. By these genii the ancient hierophants understood neither angels nor demons, but moral forces or personified virtues.

Genii of the First Hour:
PAPUS, physician. SINBUCK, judge. KASPHUIA, necromancer. ZAHUN, genius of scandal. HEIGLOT, genius of snowstorms. MIZKUN, genius of amulets. HAVEN, genius of dignity.

We must become the physician and judge of ourselves in order to vanquish the witchcrafts of the necromancer, conjure and contemn the genius of scandal, triumph over the opinion which freezes all enthusiasms, and confounds everything in the same cold pallor, like the genius of the snowstorms; know, finally, the virtue of signs so as to enchain the genius of amulets that we may reach the dignity of the

Genii of the Second Hour:
SISERA, genius of desire. TORVATUS, genius of discord. NITIBUS, genius of the stars. HIZARBIN, genius of the seas. SACHLUPH, genius of plants. BAGLIS, genius of measure and balance. LABEZERIN, genius of success.

We must learn how to will and thus transform the genius of desire into power ; the hindrance to will is the genius of discord, who is bound by the science of harmony. Harmony is the genius of the stars and of the seas; we must study the virtue of plants, and understand the laws of the balance of measure in order to attain success.

Genii of the Third Hour:
HAHABI, genius of fear. PHLOGABITUS, genius of adornments. EIRNEUS, destroying genius of idols. MASCARUN, genius of death. ZAROBI, genius of precipices. BUTATAR, genius of calculations. CAHOR, genius of deception.

When you have conquered the genius of fear by the growing force of your will, you will know that dogmas are
the sacred adornments of truth unknown to the vulgar ; but you will cast down all idols in your intelligence ; you will bind the genius of death ; you will fathom all precipices and subject the infinite itself to the ratio of your calculations ; and thus you will ever escape the ambushes of the genius
of deception.

Genii of the Fourth Hour:
PHALGUS, genius of judgment. THAGRINUS, genius of confusion. EISTIBUS, genius of divination. PHARZUPH, genius of fornication. SISLAU, genius of poisons. SCHIEKRON, genius of bestial love. ACLAHAYR, genius of sport.

The power of the magus is in his judgment, which enables him to avoid the confusion consequent on antinomy and the antagonism of principles ; he practises the divination of the sages, but he despises the illusions of enchanters who are the slaves of fornication, artists in poisons, ministers of bestial love ; in this way he is victorious over fatality, which is the genius of sport.

Genii of the Fifth Hour:
ZEIRNA, genius of infirmities. TABLIBIK, genius of fascination. TACRITAU, genius of goetic magic. SUPHLATUS, genius of the dust. SAIR, genius of the stibium of the sages. BARCUS, genius of the quintessence. CAMAYSAR, genius of the marriage of contraries.

Triumphing over human infirmities, the magus is no longer the sport of fascination ; he tramples on the vain
and dangerous practices of goetic magic, the whole power of which is but dust driven before the wind ; but he possesses the stibium of the sages ; he is armed with all the creative powers of the quintessence; and he produces at will the harmony which results from the analogy and the marriage of contraries.

Genii of the Sixth Hour:
TABRIS, genius of free will. SUSABO, genius of voyages. EIRNILUS, genius of fruits. NITIKA, genius of precious stones. HAATAN, genius who conceals treasures. HATIPHAS, genius of attire. ZAREN, avenging genius.

The magus is free ; he is the occult king of the earth, and he traverses it as one passing through his own domain. In his voyages he becomes acquainted with the juices of plants and fruits, and with the virtues of precious stones ; he compels the genius who conceals the treasures of nature to deliver him all his secrets ; he thus penetrates the mysteries of form ; understands the vestures of earth and speech ; and if he be misconstrued, if the nations are inhospitable towards him, if he pass doing good but receiving outrages, then is he ever followed by the avenging genius.

Genii of the Seventh Hour:
SIALUL, genius of prosperity. SABRUS, sustaining genius. LIBRABIS, genius of hidden gold. MIZGITARI, genius of eagles. CAUSUB, serpent-charming genius. SALILUS, genius who sets doors open. JAZER, genius who compels love.

The septenary expresses the victory of the magus ; who gives prosperity to men and nations ; who sustains them by his sublime instructions ; who broods like the eagle ; who directs the currents of the astral fire, represented by serpents ; the gates of all sanctuaries are open to him, and in him all souls who yearn for truth repose their trust ; he is beautiful in his moral grandeur ; and everywhere does he take with him that genius by the power of which we obtain love.

Genii of the Eighth Hour:
NANTUR, genius of writing. TOGLAS, genius of treasures. ZALBURIS, genius of therapeutics. ALPHUN, genius of doves. TUKIPHAT, genius of the schamir. ZIZUPH, genius of mysteries. CUNIALI, genius of association.

These are the genii who obey the true magus ; the doves represent religious ideas; the schamir is an allegorical
diamond, which in magical traditions represents the stone of the sages, or that force which nothing can resist, because it is based on truth. The Arabs still say that the schamir, originally given to Adam and lost by him after his fall, was recovered by Enoch and possessed by Zoroaster ; and that Solomon subsequently received it from an angel when he entreated wisdom from God. By means of this magical diamond, Solomon himself dressed the stones of the temple merely by touching them with the schamir.

Genii of the Ninth Hour:
EISNUCH, genius of agriculture. SUCLAGUS, genius of fire. KIRTABUS, genius of languages. SABLIL, genius who discovers thieves. SCHACHLJL, genius of the sun's rays. COLOPATIRON, genius who sets prisons open. ZEFFAK, genius of irrevocable choice.

This number, says Apollonius, must be passed over in silence, because it contains the great secrets of the initiate, the power which fructifies the earth, the mysteries of secret fire, the universal key of languages, the second sight from which evil-doers cannot remain concealed. The great laws of equilibrium and of luminous motion represented by the four animals of the Kabbalah, and in Greek mythology by the four horses of the sun, the key of the emancipation of bodies and souls, opening all prisons, and that power of eternal choice which completes the creation of man and establishes him in immortality.

Genii of the Tenth Hour:
SEZARBIL, devil or hostile genius. AZEUPH, destroyer of children. ARMILUS, genius of cupidity. KATARIS, genius of dogs or of the profane. RAZANIL, genius of the onyx. BUCAPHI, genius of stryges. MASTHO, genius of delusive appearances.

Numbers end with nine, and the distinctive sign of the denary is zero, itself without value, added to unity. The
genii of the tenth hour represent all which, being nothing in itself, receives great power from opinion, and can suffer consequently the omnipotence of the sage. We tread here on hot earth, and we must be permitted to omit elucidations to the profane as to the devil, who is their master, or the destroyer of children, who is their love, or the cupidity, which is their god, or the dogs, to which we do not compare them, or to the onyx, which they possess not, or to the stryges, who are their courtesans, or to the false appearances which they take for truth.

Genii of the Eleventh Hour:
EGLUN, genius of the lightning. ZUPHLAS, genius of forests. PHALDOR, genius of oracles. ROSABIS, genius of metals. ADJUCHAS, genius of rocks. ZOPHAS, genius of pantacles. HALACHO, genius of sympathies.

The lightning obeys man ; it becomes the vehicle of his will, the instrument of his power, the light of his torches ; the oaks of the sacred forests utter oracles : metals change and transmute into gold, or become talismans ; rocks move from their foundation, and, drawn by the lyre of the grand hierophant, touched by the mysterious schamir, transform into temples and palaces ; dogmas evolve ; symbols represented by pantacles become efficacious ; minds are enchained by powerful sympathies, and obey the laws of family and friendship.

Genii of the Twelfth Hour:
TARAB, genius of extortion. MISRAN, genius of persecution. LABUS, genius of inquisition. KALAB, genius of sacred vessels. HAHAB, genius of royal tables. MARNES, genius of the discernment of spirits. SELLEN, genius of the favour of the great.

Here now is the fate which the magi must expect, and how their sacrifice must be consummated ; for after the
conquest of life, they must know how to immolate themselves in order to be reborn immortal. They will suffer extortion; gold, pleasure, vengeance will be required of them, and if they fail to satisfy vulgar cupidities they will be the objects of persecution and inquisition ; yet the sacred vessels are not profaned ; they are made for royal tables, that is, for the feasts of the understanding. By the discernment of spirits they will know how to protect themselves from the favour of the great, and they will remain invincible in their strength and in their liberty.