A Year of Demons â€“ August and September
Religion Articles 8/31/12
By: Yona Williams
Out of the twelve months of the year, demonologists from the 16th century believed that each month was represented by a specific demon that would exhibit more power during their designated time period. It was then that people were said to become more susceptible to the charms and energy of the demon. In this article, you will learn more about the demons Astaroth and Tammuz, which have other connections and references in history and religion.
August â€“ Astaroth
Astaroth is known as a crowned prince of Hell â€“ a male figure that takes his name from the Canaanite goddess Ashtoreth and has connections to the Phoenician goddess Astarte. English occultist Francis Barrett called Astaroth the prince of accusers and inquisitors. Demonologists from the 16th century believed that Astaroth's attacks against man were stronger during the month of August.
The Astaroth associated with demonology initially appears in The Book of Abramelin â€“ a Hebrew text written sometime around 1458. According to later Kabbalistic writings, Astaroth is an arch-demon linked with adverse forces called the gliphoth. Other names that the demon is called include Ashtaroth, Astarot and Asteroth.
References of the demon and texts that mention Astaroth include:
â€¢ The Lesser Key of Solomon â€“ he appears as a rather powerful demon
â€¢ Histoire admirable de la possessopm d'une penitente â€“ the French inquisitor and prior of the Dominican order Sebastien Michaelis penned this text during his time between the late 16th and early 17th centuries. The publication offered a classification of demons that was adopted by others in literary circles. Michaelis noted that Astaroth was a demon of the First Hierarchy â€“ one who seduces by means of laziness and vanity.
â€¢ The Dictionnaire Infernal â€“ this work of art shows Astaroth as a naked man with feathered wings. He wears a crown and holds a serpent in one hand. There is a beast in the imagery that he rides â€“ one that has wings like a dragon and the tail of a serpent.
September â€“ Thammuz
While Thammuz is the name of a Sumerian god of food and vegetation, it is also the name of a demon that comes from a lower category. He is seen as the inventor of the Inquisition, fire guns, artillery, and is thought of as the one that stimulates men to torture other people. Others believe that the demon is also the ambassador of Hell to Spain. Demonologists from the 16th century say that Thammuz is strongest during the month of September.
The Babylonians worshipped the god in relation to death and a time of mourning. At the start of the summer solstice , the Ancient Near East entered a period of mourning. In the Aegean, the Babylonians observed the decrease of daylight hours with a "funeral" for the god that lasted for six days. The deity is seen as representing the yearly cycle of life, death and rebirth. Tablets from the past even show that the god is associated with the Underworld as well. Cults would gather to mourn Tammuz in the Ancient Near East and hold ceremonies â€“ sometimes even at the door of the Temple of Jerusalem.
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