A Magical Amulet Against Illnesses

Michigan, P.Mich.inv. 6666 Amulet against illnesses


This amulet against illnesses invokes various deities and makes us of increasing and decreasing vowel sequences to support its power.

Lines 1 and 6 are inscribed with the names of the higher powers later addressed in the invocation as “Lord Gods”
Iarbath Agrammê Phiblô Chôêmeô

Line 2 is inscribed with a vowel sequence with the seven vowels of the Greek alphabet increasing in number
[a e]e êêê iiii ooooo yyyyyy ôôôôôô[ô]

Lines 3-5 include the invocation and the purpose of the artefact:
Lord gods, heal Helene, whom [NN] bore, from every illness and every (onslaught of) shivering and fever, ephemeral, quotidian, tertian, quartan [?].

Lines 7-14 consist of the seven vowels written in a decreasing triangle-shape. The final single Omega is rubbed of.


Location: The University of Michigan Library
Inventory number: P.Mich.inv. 6666
Material: Papyrus
Dating: 3rd century
Provenance: unknown, purchased from Nahman through H.I. Bell in 1934
Dimensions: 12 cm x 5.8 cm

Link: https://quod.lib.umich.edu/a/apis/x-2920/6666R.TIF



Robert Daniel, P.Mich. inv. 6666: magic, in: ZPE 50 (1983), 147-154.

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