Project icon: lavishly furnished initial letter with a painting of Ptolemy using an astrolab.

Ptolemaeus

Arabus et Latinus

Α Β Γ Δ Ε Ζ Η Θ Ι Κ Λ Μ Ν Ξ Ο Π Ρ Σ Τ Υ Φ Χ Ψ Ω α β γ δ ε ζ η θ ι κ λ μ ν ξ ο π ρ σ ς τ υ φ χ ψ ω
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Work B.5

Pseudo-Ptolemy
De imaginibus super facies signorum

Text

‘(ed. Boudet) Liber Ptholomei de ymaginibus super facies signorum. Opus ymaginum Ptholomei et est omnibus modis proprior et veracior in probatione quoniam eius effectus constitutus est super faciem signorum 12. Dixit Alburabeth Benfeliz quod omnes orientales operabantur per has ymagines… De Ariete. Cum volueris ligare latrones ut non intrent domum, figurabis ymaginem viri ex ere  — et impetrabis ab eo quod animus tuus desiderat. Explicit liber Ptholomei de ymaginibus super facies signorum.’

Content

46 chapters on the making and uses of talismans associated to the 36 decans.

Origin

Translated from Arabic perhaps by John of Seville. The opening paragraphs (without the introductory paragraph) have been recently discovered in two Judaeo-Arabic fragments in the Cairo Genizah in Cambridge University Library (see G. Bohak, C. Burnett, ‘A Judaeo-Arabic Version…’). The text is attributed to Albumasar in Erlangen, UB, 434 (‘Incipiunt ymagines Albumasarum. Ymagines Albumasar quibus omnes orientales operantur…’).

Bibl.

W. Gundel, Dekane und Dekansternbilder. Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der Sternbilder der Kulturvölker, Glückstadt-Hamburg, 1936, 394-401; F. J. Carmody, Arabic Astronomical and Astrological Sciences in Latin Translation. A Critical Bibliography, Berkeley-Los Angeles, 1956, 20 (nos. 28-29); L. Thorndike, ‘Traditional Medieval Tracts Concerning Engraved Astrological Images’, in Mélanges Auguste Pelzer, Louvain, 1947, 217-273: 256-259; F. Sezgin, Geschichte des arabischen Schrifttums, VII: Astrologie-Meteorologie und Verwandtes, Leiden, 1979, VII, 47 (no. 12); D. Pingree, ‘The Diffusion of Arabic Magical Texts in Western Europe’, in La diffusione delle scienze islamiche nel Medio Evo Europeo (Roma, 2-4 ottobre 1984), Roma, 1987, 57-102: 75-76; D. Pingree, ‘Learned Magic in the Time of Frederick II’, in Le scienze alla corte di Federico II. Sciences at the Court of Frederick II [Micrologus II], Turnhout, 1994, 39-56: 44 (reprinted in Pathways into the Study of Ancient Sciences. Selected Essays by David Pingree, eds I. Pingree, J. Steele, Philadelphia, 2014, 477-494); N. Weill-Parot, Les « images astrologiques » au Moyen Age et à la Renaissance. Spéculations intellectuelles et pratiques magiques (XIIe-XVe siècles), Paris, 2002, 77-79; J.-P. Boudet, ‘Un traité de magie astrale arabo-latin: Le Liber de imaginibus du Pseudo-Ptolémée’, in Natura, scienze e societa medievali. Studi in onore di Agostino Paravicini Bagliani, eds C. Leonardi, F. Santi, Firenze, 2008, 17-35; C. Burnett, G. Bohak, ‘A Judaeo-Arabic Version of Ṯābit ibn Qurra’s De Imaginibus and Pseudo-Ptolemy’s Opus Imaginum, in Islamic Philosophy, Science, Culture and Religion. Studies in Honor of Dimitri Gutas, eds. F. Opwis, D. Reisman, Leiden-Boston, 2012, 179-200; D. Juste, ‘The Impact of Arabic Sources on European Astrology: Some Facts and Numbers’, Micrologus 24 (2016), 173-194: 193 (n. 49).

Ed.

Boudet, ‘Un traité de magie astrale…’, 26-35 (from Paris, BnF, lat. 16204, with variants of Florence, BML, Plut. 30.29, and Florence, BNC, II.III.214).

MSS