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Christopher Warnock, Esq.
Agrippa's Algol Talisman
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The Head of Medusa

A Talisman of the Fixed Star Algol, the Head of the Medusa

from Cornelius Agrippa's Three Books of Occult Philosophy



The Gorgon Medusa plays an important part in the story of the Greek hero Perseus. Robert Graves relates that, "...the Gorgon Medusa had serpents for hair, huge teeth, protruding tongue and altogether so ugly a face that all who gazed upon it were [literally] petrified with fright." The Greek Myths (Penguin, 1955) page 239.
With the aid of Hermes and Athene Perseus slew Medusa and cut off her head, which continued to have the ability to turn those who beheld it to stone.
Perseus and the Head of Medusa
Algol is the second brightest star of the constellation Perseus and thus is sometimes referred to as Beta Persei. The name Algol, says Richard Hinckley Allen, comes from the Arabic Ras Al-Ghul, which literally means the Mischief Maker. Star Names (Dover, 1963) page 332. Algol is called the Demon, the Demon Star and is also known as the Blinking Demon because it is part of a binary star system where a dimmer star periodically eclipses its brighter partner.
Algol has a very bad reputation among astrologers. Vivian Robson says, "It is the most evil star in the heavens." The Fixed Stars and Constellations in Astrology (Sun Books 1995) page 124. William Lilly gives a significator a score of minus five points if within five degrees of Algol and says it prenotes death either by violence to oneself or others. Christian Astrology pages 115, 257-8, 536.
One would think that this is a star to stay well away from. However, Cornelius Agrippa says,
Under the Head of Algol, they made an image whose figure was the head of a man with a bloody neck; they report that it bestoweth good success to petitions, and make him go carrieth it bold and magnanimous, and preserveth the members of the body sound; also it helpeth against witchcraft, and reflecteth evil endeavours, and wicked incantations upon our adversaries.
Three Books of Occult Philosophy Bk.II, Chapter 47 (Tyson ed.) page 395. Agrippa gives the following instructions for the making of rings which we can adapt for our Algol talisman,
Now, the manner of making these kinds of rings, is this, viz., when any star ascends fortunately, with the fortunate aspect or conjunction of the Moon, we must take a stone, and herb that is under that star, and fasten it under that star and make a ring of the metal that is suitable to this star, and in it fasten the stone, putting the herb or root under it; not omitting the inscription of images, names and characters, and also the proper suffimigations..."
Three Books of Occult Philosophy Bk.I, Chapter 47 (Tyson ed.) page 140.

Chart produced by Solar Fire 5

Adapting these instructions the time chosen for the making of the Algol talisman is July 16, 2001 at 2:01 am EDT in Washington, D.C. 38 N 55, 77 W 03. At this time Algol, which is at 26 degrees and 10 minutes of Taurus is rising and the Moon is at 23 degrees of Taurus, conjunct Algol and the Ascendant.
The Moon is strong in its exaltation Taurus and is making an applying sextile to the Sun. Nevertheless, this is still an election with malefic overtones. William Ramesey says, "...in all manner of Elections for good...[Let not the Moon] be in the Ascendant..." Astrologiae Restaurata (London, 1653) page 127. It is the planetary hour of Saturn, the Greater Malefic. And c'mon, it's an Algol election!
Agrippa says that under the rule of Algol are diamonds, black hellebore and mugwort. Three Books of Occult Philosophy Bk.I, Chapter 32 (Tyson ed.) page 99. Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) is available from the Lucky Mojo Curio Company. Here is more information on Black Hellebore, Helleborus niger.
Character of Algol
Algol even has its own character which appears to right. Three Books of Occult Philosophy Bk.II, Chapter 52 (Tyson ed.) page 409.
Here is further information on Astrological Talismans and Astrological Magic. If you wish to delve even deeper into this fascinating area I offer an Astrological Magic Web Course.




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Specializing in Horary Astrology, Electional Astrology Astrological Magic and Astrological Talismans.

Copyright 2001 Christopher Warnock, All Rights Reserved.