Briefly Noted: ‘The Black Pullet’

The name “Grimoire” is derived from the word “Grammar”. A grammar is a description of a set of symbols and how to combine them to create well-formed sentences. A Grimoire is, appropriately enough, a description of a set of magickal symbols and how to combine them properly. – Internet Sacred Text Archive

While grimoires are typically associated with so-called high magic or ritual magic, the term has lost some of its focus because some people use it as a synonym for the craft practitioner’s Book of Shadows.

The Black Pullet, also known as the hen that lays the golden eggs, is a grimoire and a story combined. Purportedly, the book was written in the 1700s. The book relates the story of a French soldier serving in Egypt with Napolean’s army who is wounded and left for dead next to one of the pyramids. An old man emerges from a secret entrance to a pyramid, takes the soldier inside, and treats his wounds. The soldier discovers that there are a vast library and living quarters within the pyramid. All are richly adorned in the manner one would expect of royalty in those days.

The man says that he has long been the guardian of the deep secrets of the universe and, if he is willing, the soldier will now take his place. The guardian begins to teach the young man about prayers and meditations that will transform him into one who is worthy of the sacred knowledge. Subsequently, the soldier learns of the sacred symbols and words emblazoned on rings and talismans, and how to use them to control nature and the numerous beings that inhabit the universe, most of whom can be very helpful to the one who holds the sacred knowledge.

The book is filled with drawings of talismans and amulets accompanied by the words of power one uses to invoke the desired powers, and that includes creating the black hen that lays golden eggs.

from the Black Pullet’s Preface

The work which we offer to the public must not be confused with a collection of reveries and errors to which their authors have tried to give credence by announcing supernatural feats; which the credulous and the ignorant seized with avidity. We only quote the most respectable authorities and most dignified in faith. The principles which we present are based on the doctrines of the ancients and modern, who full of respect for the Divinity, were always the friends of mankind, endeavoured to recall them to virtue, by showing them vice in all its deformity. We have drawn from the most pure sources, having only in view the love of truth and the desire to enlighten those who desire to discover the secrets of Nature and the marvels which they unfold to those who never separate the darkness which surrounds them. It is only given to those who are favoured by The Great Being, to raise themselves above the terrestrial sphere, and to plan a bold flight in the etheric regions; it is for these privileged men that we write.

While some conjure men and women use seals and symbols taken from this book for protection and as an aid to spell casting, the book appears to stand more as a curiosity than a useful, working grimoire. Many old grimoires and other ancient texts are pulled into craft (witchcraft) and conjure work for power with probable benefits; however, the intent of the book is for use by students of high magic rather folk magic for summoning entities rather than as, say, a strong rabbit’s foot.

Malcolm