A Dictionary of Angels by Gustav Davidson


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The Free Press, 1967. First Edition. Large hardback. 3406 entries identifying and describing a host of angels and fallen angels. 105 illustrations from a wide range of sources; paintings, manuscripts & old prints. Some minor marks to jacket, a very good copy with no internal inscriptions. Small stamp from previous book shop on title page. 

'Gustav Davidson’s classic text, A dictionary of Angels: Including the Fallen Angels, is the result of sixteen years of research in Talmudic, gnostic, cabalistic, apocalyptic, patristic, and legendary texts. The classic reference work on angels is beautifully illustrated and its reissue coincides with the resurgence of belief in angels in America. This well researched and exquisitely illustrated dictionary is a wonderful collectable for all those who believe in angels, miracles, lore, and faith.. Enlivened with 105 illustrations, an extensive bibliography and an Appendix containing pacts, sigils, charms, invocations, exorcisms, and much more.' 

"Some years ago when I started "collecting" angels as a literary diversion, it was certainly with no
thought of serving as their archivist, biographer, and finally as their lexicographer. Such an idea
did not occur to me-indeed, could not have occurred to me-until I had corralled a sufficient
number of the heavenly denizens to make a dictionary of them feasible.
At first I thought that angels, named angels, were to be found only in the Bible. I soon learned
that, on the contrary, the Bible was the last place to look for them. True, angels are mentioned
frequently enough in both the Old and New Testaments, but they are not named, save in two or
three instances. Virtually all the named angels in this compilation are culled from sources outside scripture..
A good way to conclude this Apologia pro libro suo is to quote from a recently published
paper on the guise of angels. It was there intimated that "in view of the continuing hold of the
supernatural over the minds of men, and the fact that a belief in the existence of angels (and
demons) is an article of faith with two of our major world religions, and part of the tradition
of at least four of them (Persian, Jewish, Christian, Muslim), it is highly probable that we shall
have the winged creatures with us for a long, long time to come." True, we may not always
know whether we are in the presence of "a spirit of health or goblin damned," whether we are
being fanned by "airs from Heaven or blasts from Hell," but it is best to be on guard. Even
Satan, as Paul cautioned us, can show himself transformed into an angel of light."

Category Theology