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HAVE already said in the preceding chapter that shortly after the death of my father, I attached myself unto the research of the True Wisdom, and of the Mystery of the Lord. Now in this chapter I will briefly mention the places and countries by which I have passed in order to endeavour to learn those things which are good. And I do this in order that it may serve thee for a rule and example not to waste thy youth in petty and useless pursuits, like little girls sitting round the fireplace. For there is nothing more deplorable and more unworthy in a man than to find himself ignorant in all circumstances. He who worketh and travelleth learneth much and he who knoweth not how to conduct and govern himself when far from his native land, will know still less in his own house how to do so. I dwelt then, after the death of my father, for four years with my brothers and sisters, and I studied with care how to put to a profitable use what my father had left me after his death; and seeing that my means were insufficient to counterbalance

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the expenses which I was compelled to be at, after having set in order all my affairs and business as well as my strength permitted; I set out, and I went into Vormatia 1 to Mayence, in order to find there a very aged Rabbi named Moses, in the hope that I had found in him that which I sought. As I have said in the preceding chapter, his Science had no foundation such as that of the True Divine Wisdom. I remained with him for four years, miserably wasting all that time there, and persuading myself that I had learned all that I wished to know, 2 and I was only thinking of returning to my paternal home, when I casually met a young man of our sect, named SAMUEL, a native of Bohemia, whose manners and mode of life showed me that be wished to live, walk, and die in the Way of the Lord and in His Holy Law; and I contracted so strong a bond of friendship with him that I showed him all my feelings and intentions. As he had resolved to make a journey to Constantinople, in order to there join a brother of his father, and thence to pass into the Holy Land wherein our forefathers had dwelt, and from the which for our very great errors and misdeeds we had been chased and cast forth by God. He, 3 having so willed it, the moment that he 4 had made me acquainted with his design, I felt an extraordinary desire to accompany him in his journey, and I believe that Almighty God wished by this means to awaken me, for I could take no rest until the moment that we mutually and reciprocally passed our word to each other and swore to make the voyage together.

On the 13th day of February, in the year 1397, we commenced our journey, passing through Germany,

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[paragraph continues] Bohemia, Austria, and thence by Hungary and Greece unto Constantinople, where we remained two years, and I should never have quitted it, had not death taken Samuel from me at length through a sudden illness. Finding myself alone, a fresh desire for travel seized me, and so much was my heart given thereto, that I kept wandering from one place to another, until at length I arrived in Egypt, where constantly travelling for the space of four years in one direction and another, the more I practised the experiments of the magic of RABBIN MOSES, the less did it please me. I pursued my voyage towards our ancient country, where I fixed my residence for a year, and neither saw nor heard of any other thing but misery, calamity, and unhappiness. After this period of time, I there found a Christian who also was travelling in order to find that which I was seeking also myself Having made an agreement together, we resolved to go into the desert parts of Arabia for the search for that which we ardently desired; feeling sure that, as we had been told, there were in those places many just and very learned men, who dwelt there in order to be able to study without any hindrance, and to devote themselves unto that Art for which we ourselves were seeking; but as we there found nothing equivalent to the trouble we had taken, or which was worthy of our attention, there came into my head the extravagant idea to advance no farther, but to return to my own home. I communicated my intention to my companion, but he for his part wished to follow out his enterprise and seek his good fortune; so I prepared to return,


8:1 "Vormatie"; that is to say, the district under the government of the town of Worms, called in Latin "Vormatia" anciently.

8:2 in the previous chapter he says that he remained in this path of study for ten years.

8:3 I.e., God.

8:4 Samuel.

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