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Þursakyngi IV ‘Svartkonst’ is the first part of a two-part series regarding Swedish sorcery known as svartkonst (black art). This book offers a historical, mythological and folkloric insight in old Swedish folk magical traditions with explanations and a glossary, as well as twenty-four practical bindrunes, called Trollrunor, which are charged and tested according to Swedish svartkonst and our own tradition. They can be quickened and employed by following the instructions that comes with each rune. In line with the Trollrunor, the book also comprises fourteen simpler bindrunes called Tursarnas Vapen, each one representing a sorcerous virtue, which are employed when their empowerments are needed. Their attributes, correspondences and sympathetic links are listed with each rune. In addition to the practical part, customs concerning offerings, periods and days of the year, tincture and incense recipes for cleansing, magical ink formula, and how to make a conjuring wand are included.
In the last part of the book, a handful of the most relevant entities (väsen) connected to svartkonst, our Thursian Tradition and the mysteries leading back to the Descendants of the Thurses are explored in a concise but insightful form from the perspective of Swedish folklore, such as the Devil, giants and trolls, and genii loci (such as rån, näckar and tomtar etc.), an account which is meant to give those enticed by svartkonst a strong foundation in the relevant aspects of Swedish folk belief.
Swedish Svartkonst (black art or nigromancy) is not equivalent to any imagined form of “pure Swedish pre-Christian magic”, but is instead something that while having emerged from the Old Norse forms of spirituality early on been saturated by Christian influences which successively predominated the folk belief and practical sorcery of Scandinavia. And through this amalgamation of old wisdom with the newer beliefs and knowledge concerning conjurations, magic, alchemy, and medicine the very unique and often transgressive folk magic known as svartkonst was forged.