Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Wouter J. Hanegraaff, in collaboration with Antoine Faivre, Roelof van den Broek and Jean-Pierre Brach

Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online is the comprehensive reference work to cover the entire domain of “Gnosis and Western Esotericism” from the period of Late Antiquity to the present. Containing around 400 articles by over 180 international specialists, Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online provides critical overviews discussing the nature and historical development of all its important currents and manifestations, from Gnosticism and Hermetism to Astrology, Alchemy and Magic, from the Hermetic Tradition of the Renaissance to Rosicrucianism and Christian Theosophy, and from Freemasonry and Illuminism to 19thcentury Occultism and the contemporary New Age movement. Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism Online also contains articles about the life and work of all the major personalities in the history of Gnosis and Western Esotericism, discussing their ideas, significance, and historical influence.

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Willermoz, Jean-Baptiste

(3,209 words)

Author(s): Var, Jean-François
Willermoz, Jean-Baptiste, * 10 Jul 1730 (Lyons), † 29 May 1824 (Lyons) Willermoz stemmed from an old bourgeois family of Saint-Claude (the name was originally written Vuillermoz) which, according to family documents, was of distantly Spanish origin. His father had settled in Lyon as a haberdashery merchant. The family included several priests, and young Willermoz was educated by the Jesuits. The eldest of twelve children, he was very soon sent out into the world, being apprenticed at the age of fourteen to …

William of Auvergne

(616 words)

Author(s): Lemoine, Michel
William of Auvergne, * 1191 (Aurillac), † 1249 (Paris) Born in Aurillac, William became a canon before 1223, a master of theology in 1225, and bishop of Paris in 1228. He enjoyed the confidence of Louis IX and also that of the popes, despite a certain “Gallicanism”. His pastoral activity concerned the development of religious orders, the reorganization of parishes and monasteries, and the defense of Christian doctrine. Under his episcopate occurred the university strike of 1229-1231, the conflict between…

Witchcraft (15th-17th centuries)

(2,515 words)

Author(s): Valente, Michaela
Witchcraft is the human exercise of supernatural powers for antisocial, evil purposes. The term also refers to the whole of beliefs in the existence of power by means of which someone can change nature or harm people. Over time, the idea of witchcraft has started to include the idea of a diabolical pact or at least an appeal to the intervention of the demons: supernatural aid is usually invoked to kill someone, to awaken the passion of love in others, to invoke the dead, to bring calamity upon e…