A new reprinting makes available one of the rarest books ever written on magic by Thomas Ady. This book contains one of the earliest histories and explanations of the word “Hocus Pocus”. You will find the account on page 29. Quite possibly, this could be where the word originated 339 years ago.
Through the benevolence of Etienne Lorenceau, we’re honored to bring into the magic fraternity one of the most sought-after volumes of magic books—the 1655 edition of Ady’s revered A Candle In The Dark. Why is this treatise so rare? In the first full-dress bibliography of conjuring, Raymond Toole Stott cites only five copies in existence. Ady wrote this treatise to augment Scot’s Discoverie of Witchcraft and further prove that people being accused of witchcraft were simply magicians.
Ady’s book contains a determined onslaught on the doctrines of Demonologie—King James of England’s book on the nature of magic and sorcery which fueled witch hunts. Ady makes reference of King James’ most excellent Hocus Pocus, a magician who used to say, “Hocus Pocus, tont us talont us, vade celeriter jubeo.”