References to Sunday’s Thoth & Maat Lecture #9: Ancient Magic Gems

This is a compilation of the publications and online resources I mentioned or referred to in Sunday’s lecture about Ancient Magic Gems.

Fundamental corpora and studies based on a large number of gems

  • Campbell Bonner (1950): Studies in magical amulets, chiefly Graeco-Egyptian
    => Introduces almost 400 gems, including an extensive analysis
  • Armand Delatte, Philippe Derchain (1964): Les Intailles magiques gréco-égyptiennes
    =>Illustrations, photographs, and descrirptions of 540 gems, predominantly from the Cabinet des médailles of the National Library of France in Paris, including analyses and discussions
  • Simone Michel (2001): Die Magischen Gemmen im Britischen Museum
    => Illustrations and descriptions of 649 ancient and post-antique magic gems in the British Museum with summaries of the deities and brief discussions of some of the inscriptions, including plates of a larger number of the gems, but no analyses
  • Kirsten Dzwiza (2019): Magical Signs: An extraordinary phenomenon or just business as usual? – Analysing decoration patterns of magical gems
    => Analyses of 1.075 magical gems

Other relevant papers

Early works

  • Ioannis Macarii Canonici Ariensis (Jean l’Heureux), Abraxas, seu Apistopistus; quae est antiquaria de gemmis Basilidianis disquisitio. Accedit Abraxas Proteus, seu multiformis gemmae Basilidianae portentosa varietas (Antuerpiae, 1657).
    => Relevant especially because of the drawings of gems in terms of researching potential forgeries

Online Resources

The Campbell Bonner Magical Gems Database
=> Comprises “around 5600 pieces”, but this number includes double entries, a larger number of modern pieces, and forgeries
=> Despite being developed up until 2020, the database is only vailable via http

“A brief history of engraved Classical gems” with a number of photographs of non-magical gems and their prices is offered on the website of the auction house Christies:

The Getty Collection

The Metropolitan Museum of Art Collection

About individual gems

Gem inscribed with magic signs and “archangeloi”

Enigmatic Magic Gem Inscribed with Secret Names and Magic Signs

“Resurrection gems”(?)

The “Gnostic-Ptolemaic 1st century BC” forgery