- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Llewellyn Publications; First Edition edition (October 8, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0738723061
- ISBN-13: 978-0738723068
- Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1 x 10.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 132 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,613 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Dictionary of Demons: Names of the Damned Paperback – October 8, 2010
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From the Publisher
Names of the Damned
Occult scholar Michelle Belanger has compiled the most complete compendium of demonic names available anywhere, using both notorious and obscure sources from the Western grimoiric tradition. Presented alphabetically from Aariel to Zynextyur, more than 1,500 demons are introduced, explored, and cross-referenced by theme and elemental or planetary correspondence. This meticulously researched reference work features fascinating short articles on demonology and a wealth of woodcuts, etchings, and paintings depicting demons through the ages.
About the Author
A star on television's Paranormal State, Michelle Belanger wears many creative hats. Other media appearances include the History Channel's Vampire Secrets, Monsterquest, CNN Headline News, HBO's True Bloodlines, Fox, MTV.com, Marvel's AR Morbius #1, and most recently, Monsters and Mysteries in America. The author of over two dozen books on supernatural topics, her Dictionary of Demons is in its sixth printing and has served as a resource for multiple shows, university courses, and books. A talented singer-songwriter, she has performed on CDs with Nox Arcana, URN, and Xyla. More information can be found at www.michellebelanger.com.
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I have flipped through it quite a lot, and when I catch a name that sounds interesting I read that article. Most entries do recommend others to read to further round out your knowledge of that particular demon. So before you know it you've been browsing this for an hour.
My only problem is, as mentioned in some other reviews, this book pretty much sticks only to demons with proper names. There are a few entries in regards to authors of demonic lore as well as important books in demonic history (The author mentions this in the introduction.)
I'll keep this short and sweet and say I highly recommend this. Whether you believe in this sort of thing or not, it is incredibly interesting.
It reads very much like a dictionary (as the title states). It also seems to read like a big footnote combined with a thesaurus. It does have interesting information in it. Some reviewers have complained about the way it is written, but for me this was more of a glance through it (aka just for fun) sort of book. Some complain that people can find the same information on Wikipedia or Google, but I appreciate that all the info is compiled into one big book. I will be the first to admit that I would not know what names to even start with for a search.
I'd maybe use this look up any demon names I've read in paranormal books or seen in paranormal movies. It's a big book with a dark design, perfect for my collection.
And demons have names.
Whether you believe, disbelieve or are indifferent to the concept of demons, the spiritual concept and sociological ideology behind the need to identify or create demons in human society is fascinating. In the well-researched book Dictionary of Demons by Michelle Belanger, the reader is introduced to an alphabetized pantheon of demon names, histories, side notes and indices that delve into this spiritually torrid and intellectually intriguing topic.
Most impressively, Belanger largely limits the scope of the catalogue to major Western demons and demon concepts, and she explains the criteria for who "makes the list" and why in the introduction. This immediately becomes important when you realize the amount of research that was needed to facilitate this collection, and the source material is key.
Do not let Belanger's easy-going style belie the scholarly research and investigation put into this book. A quick look at the bibliography shows investigations looking at and citing original source material whenever possible, even to the point of cross-checking editions. For example, both the 1564 and 1566 editions of Johannes Wierus' De Praestigiis Daemonum are cited and compared against each other to obtain any variations in the text.
Buy the book for the rich content, but enjoy the book for the art work. Containing the original work of artist Jackie Williams, as well as copies of original prints and other contributors, both the essence and history of this demonic chronicle comes alive.
Dictionary of Demons can be fun to flip through, but it also can a satisfying solid read. This is not just another "new age" book on demonology, yet the writing is accessible and interesting for a wide audience. Spend time looking through the indices, lists and bibliography for even more information.
As a reviewer, I am pleased to see this work come out. Given the depth and research involved in this project, I hope Ms. Belanger continues with more on this topic in other cultures.