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The Pentacle of the Heptameron

Let it be a Priests Garment, if it can be: but if cannot be had, let it be of linen, and clean. Then take this Pentacle made in the day and hour of Mercury, the Moon increasing, written in parchment made of a kids skin. But first let there be said over it the Mass of the holy Ghost, and let it be sprinkled with water of baptism. ~Heptameron

This shows us the image of the pentacle consists of AGLA and what appears to be a “C” or “O”, ”H” and a small “v” over it along the outside of the pentacle. The center has a crooked cross followed by “Xpus” and a dash above the top. Recently there has been some debate as to what this OHV thing means. It’s been brought up that perhaps it’s not an “H” but rather an “N” or perhaps the “v” is a Greek “nu” indicating perhaps it’s actually “ON” which would match the sword which has “AGLA” on one side with “ON“ on the other.

Recently however there have been some major discoveries on the Heptameron front. With the discovery of VRL1115 and VSG338 (both 15th century), we are able to get a glimpse inside the source-work of the Heptameron to best determine what is meant by this puzzling pentacle.

VRL1115 (left) depicts AGLA around the outside and ΙΗΣ (JES – for Jesus) at the top. In the center we see “ X Xpus”, or a cross followed by a Greek “Chi-rho -us” (Christ). In VSG338 (right) we see an incomplete “AGL” followed by an “I” (J for Jesus). In the center we don’t see an Xpus, rather just a cross. Joseph Peterson mentions in the Elucidarium facebook group that he feels the urtext of the Elucidarium likely did not draw out the pentacle but instead simply describes it much like the sword. This would account for the wide variety of pentacles in every Elucidarium text (including the Heptameron). Because we see AGLA and Jesus are a steadfast in the sourcework of the Heptameron, it seems very likely that the Heptameron actually has AGLA on one side and a corrupted IHS on the other. How does IHS become OHV? Well, for starters it would read counter clockwise so VHO. The “O” is likely a sigma final (ς) mistaken for a “c”. It is possible the ”C“ is actually correct and it’s “IHC” which would not contradict the tradition of spelling. The “H” would be correct and the little “v” to be a corruption of an “I”.

Considering the consistency is ΙΗΣ and AGLA in some manner along the outside, and a cross or Xpus in the center, it would seem the urtext described simply a hexagram with crosses at each point with the name AGLA and JESUS along the outside and Christ in the middle. This would account for the wide variation in where the names are located and how the hexagram is drawn as well as if it’s in a circle or not.

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