Witches, whether they’re brand new to witchcraft or have been practicing for decades, can benefit from using a grimoire. Despite the longstanding tradition of witches carrying around their books of spells, rituals, incantations, and other magical information, there’s some confusion about what exactly a grimoire is and how best to use one. This in-depth course will cover everything you need to know to create, add to, and use your very own grimoire in your magical practice, as well as introduce you to the wide variety of grimoires available to the modern witch.
A grimoire is simply a book that contains any kind of magical information. This book can be made of many different materials, and it can hold hundreds of pages of information, or only contain a handful of pages. It is a highly personal book, and it’s not uncommon for one witch’s grimoire to look completely different from another witch’s.
These books can be passed down from generation to generation, or it can be created by a brand new witch with a few scribbled sigils in a ninety-nine cent notebook.
All grimoires are special, but it’s important to create a grimoire that is tailored to your specific needs as a witch, and your individual lifestyle, and your magical practice.
The lineage of magical books goes all the way back to ancient Egypt. There is a legend about a book of magic called “The Book of Thoth” that holds all the secrets of the world. Anyone who reads from the book will have access to the unlimited power of the universe. Thoth was the Egyptian god of writing and literature. It was said that Thoth wrote down all of his magical spells, incantations, and rituals to share with humans. It is unclear whether it was a single book or a series of manuscripts.
Through the centuries, witches have handwritten and sometimes printed books full of their magical spells. Many books have been lost throughout history, due to laws and persecution of people who practiced magic. Many grimoires were destroyed by their owners who feared imprisonment or death as a consequence of having a book of magic in their possession.
It is also a tradition in some kinds of witchcraft for a witch’s personal grimoire to be burned upon his or her death.
Despite the ancient roots of a grimoire, it is actually a very practical tool for the modern witch. You don’t have to be an amazing writer to create a book that is both powerful and personal.
The word “grimoire” is French, which is an old spelling of the word, “grammaire” (or “grammar” in English). The original root of the word “grimoire” was thought to have come from a Latin word which meant “a teaching book”.
Now, the word “grimoire” is widely used to describe a book of magic, though there is still some confusion that surrounds this word. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a grimoire as “a magician's manual for invoking demons and the spirits of the dead”. This is true on some level—communicating with spirits, deities, and people who have passed away might be included in a grimoire. However, a typical grimoire is certainly not limited to death spells and contacting with spirits. Some witches don’t practice that kind of magic at all. Again, each grimoire is different, just as each person is different.
There are many paths and traditions you can explore when learning how to use magic to discover your power. The material presented here will focus on witchcraft as a secular practice, to be used on its own or with any religion you choose to follow.
That’s why this course uses the term “Grimoire” rather than “Book of Shadows”. You might hear these two terms used interchangeably, but there is a difference worth noting. The term “Book of Shadows” comes from the Wiccan tradition. Like a grimoire, it contains magical information, but grimoire is what you’d call your magical book if you’re a secular witch or a witch who follows a kind of witchcraft other than Wicca. The concepts have some similarities, but the terminology is different.