It is often said that the devil has all the best tunes. He also has as many names as he has guises. Lucifer, Mephistopheles, Beelzebub (in Christian thought), Ha-Satan or the Adversary (in Jewish scripture) and Iblis or Shaitan (in Islamic tradition) has throughout the ages and across civilizations been a compelling and charismatic presence.
For two thousand years the supposed reign of God has been challenged by the fiery malice of his opponent, as contending forces of good and evil have between them weighed human souls in the balance. In this rich and multi-textured biography, Philip C Almond explores the figure of the devil from the first centuries of the Christian era through the rise of classical demonology and witchcraft persecutions to the modern post-Enlightenment 'decline' of Hell. The author shows that the Prince of Darkness, in all his incarnations, remains an irresistible subject in history, religion, art, literature and culture.
About the Author
Philip C Almond is Emeritus Professor of Religion in the University of Queensland. His previous books include The Witches of Warboys: An Extraordinary Story of Sorcery, Sadism and Satanic Possession (2008), England's First Demonologist: Reginald Scot and 'The Discoverie of Witchcraft' (2011) and The Lancashire Witches: A Chronicle of Sorcery and Death on Pendle Hill (2012), all published by I.B.Tauris.
'This fascinating - and tragic - account of his influence through history will be a real eye-opener to anyone who supposes that the inconvenience of his not existing would limit the damage the Devil could do. Fundamentally, the Devil owes his powers to the problem of reconciling God's goodness with God's omnipotence. Following with deep learning a trail of confusion, dogmatism and persecution, Philip Almond in his vivid biography convincingly demonstrates that the Devil was, and is, a very bad idea.' - Jill Paton Walsh, author of Knowledge of Angels, shortlisted for the Booker Prize
Number Of Pages: 304
Published: 30th March 2016
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.6 x 13.5 x 2.2
Weight (kg): 0.35
Edition Number: 1