Sacramentum Mundi Online

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Superstition - Magic
(2,010 words)

Part of Superstition:

1. The Problem

2. Magic

3. Astrology

The word “magician” comes from the Persian Magus, of unknown meaning, which was first applied to a caste or tribe of priests among the Medes (cf. the Levites) (Herodotus, History, I, 101). From his associations with the Babylonian priesthood, the Magus was then understood as an astrologer, an interpreter of dreams and a wizard. Magic then came to mean the art of enchantment, sorcery, the mysterious power of producing marvellous effects by compelling the aid of preternatural forces.

1. History of religion. The exact definition …

Cite this page
Jörg Splett, “Superstition - Magic”, in: Sacramentum Mundi Online, General Editor Karl Rahner, SJ. Consulted online on 26 November 2022 <>
First published online: 2016

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