Being An Introduction To The Whole Work
Of Divination Sorcery The Black-art Pawawing And Such Like Pretenders To Devilism And How Far The Devil Is Or Is Not Concern'd
Of God's Calling A Church Out Of The Midst Of A Degenerate World
Of Hell As It Is Represented To Us And How The Devil Is To Be Understood As Being Personally In Hell When At The Same Time We F
Of Satan's Agents Or Missionaries And Their Actings Upon And In The Minds Of Men In His Name
Of The Devil's Last Scene Of Liberty
Of The Devil's Management In The Pagan Hierarchy By Omens Entrails Augurs Oracles And Such Like Pageantry Of Hell
Of The Devil's Second Kingdom And How He Got Footing In The Renew'd World By His Victory Over Noah And His Race
Of The Extraordinary Appearance Of The Devil And Particularly Of The Cloven-foot
Of The Manner Of Satan's Acting And Carrying On His Affairs In This World And Particularly Of His Ordinary Workings In The Dark
Of The Name Of The Devil His Original And The Nature Of His Circumstances Since He Has Been Called By That Name
Of The Number Of Satan's Host How They Came First To Know Of The New Created Worlds Now In Being And Their Measures With Mankin
Of The Original Of The Devil Who He Is And What He Was Before His Expulsion Out Of Heaven And In What State He Was From That Ti
Of The Power Of The Devil At The Time Of The Creation Of This World
Of The Progress Of Satan In Carrying On His Conquest Over Mankind From The Fall Of Eve To The Deluge
Of The Station Satan Had In Heaven Before He Fell The Nature And Original Of His Crime And Some Of Mr Milton's Mistakes Aboutit
Of The Tools The Devil Works With Witches Wizards Or Warlocks Conjurers Magicians Divines Astrologers Interpreters Of Dreams Te
Of The Various Methods The Devil Takes To Converse With Mankind
Of The Word Devil As It Is A Proper Name To The Devil And Any Or All His Host Angels
The Total Works
What Became Of The Devil And His Host Of Fallen Spirits After Their Being Expell'd From Heaven
Whether Is Most Hurtful To The World The Devil Walking About Without His Cloven-foot Or The Cloven-foot Walking About Without T
Witches Making Bargains For The Devil And Particularly Of Selling The Soul To The Devil
Of The Word Devil As It Is A Proper Name To The Devil And Any Or All His Host Angels
It is a question, not yet determined by the learned, whether the word
Devil be a singular, that is to say, the name of a person standing
by himself, or a noun of multitude; if it be a singular, and so must
be used personally only as a proper name, it consequently implies one
imperial Devil, Monarch or King of the whole clan of Hell; justly
distinguish'd by the term THE DEVIL, or as the Scots call him, the
muckle horn'd Dee'l, or as others in a wilder dialect, the Devil of
Hell, that is to say, the Devil of a Devil; or (better still) as
the Scripture expresses it, by way of emphasis, the great red Dragon,
the Devil and Satan.
But if we take this word to be, as above, a noun of multitude, and so
to be used ambo-dexter, as occasion presents, singular or plural; then
the Devil signifies Satan by himself, or Satan with all his
Legions at his heels, as you please, more or less; and this way of
understanding the word, as it may be very convenient for my purpose, in
the account I am now to give of the infernal Powers, so it is not
altogether improper in the nature of the thing: It is thus express'd in
Scripture, where the person possess'd Matt. iv. 24. is first said to
be possess'd of the Devil (singular) and our Saviour asks him, as
speaking to a single person, what is thy name? and is answer'd in the
plural and singular together, my name is LEGION, for we are many.
Nor will it be any wrong to the Devil, supposing him a single person,
seeing entitling him to the conduct of all his inferior Agents, is what
he will take rather for an addition to his infernal glory, than a
diminution or lessening of him in the extent of his Fame.
Having thus articl'd with the Devil for liberty of speech, I shall
talk of him sometimes in the singular, as a person, and sometimes in the
plural, as an host of Devils or of infernal Spirits, just as occasion
requires, and as the history of his affairs makes necessary.
But before I enter upon any part of his history, the nature of the thing
calls me back, and my Lord B---- of ---- in his late famous orations in
defence of liberty, summons me to prove that there is such a thing or
such a person as the Devil; and in short, unless I can give some
evidence of his existence, as my Lord ---- said very well, I am talking
D--m me, Sir, says a graceless comrade of his to a great man, your
Grace will go to the Devil.
D--m ye, Sir, says the D----, then I shall go no where; I wonder where
you intend to go?
Nay, to the D----l too I doubt, says Graceless, for I am almost as
wicked as my Lord Duke.
D. Thou ar't a silly empty Dog, says the D--, and if there is such a
place as a Hell, tho' I believe nothing of it, 'tis a place for fools,
such as thou art.
Gr. I wonder then, what Heaven the great wits go to, such as my Lord
Duke; I don't care to go there, let it be where it will; they are a
tiresome kind of people, there's no bearing them, they'll make a Hell
wherever they come.
D. Prithee hold thy fool's tongue, I tell thee, if there is any such
place as we call NO WHERE; that's all the Heaven or Hell that I know of,
or believe any thing about.
Gr. Very good, my Lord--; so that Heaven is no where, and
Hell is no where, and the Devil is nobody, according to my Lord
D. Yes Sir, and what then?
Gr. And you are to go no where when you die, are you?
D. Yes, you Dog, don't you know what that incomparable noble genius my
Lord Rochester sings upon the subject, I believe it unfeignedly,
After death nothing is,
And nothing death.
Gr. You believe it, my Lord, you mean, you would fain believe it if
you could; but since you put that great genius my Lord Rochester upon
me, let me play him back upon your Grace; I am sure you have read his
fine poem upon nothing, in one of the stanzas of which is this
And to be part of  thee
The wicked wisely pray.
D. You are a foolish Dog.
Gr. And my Lord Duke is a wise Infidel.
D. Why? is it not wiser to believe no Devil, than to be always
terrify'd at him?
Gr. But shall I toss another Poet upon you, my Lord?
If it should so fall out, as who can tell
But there may be a GOD, a Heaven and Hell?
Mankind had best consider well, for fear
'T should be too late when their mistakes appear.
D. D--m your foolish Poet, that's not my Lord Rochester.
Gr. But how must I be damn'd, if there's no Devil? Is not your
Grace a little inconsistent there? My Lord Rochester would not have
said that, and't please your Grace.
D. No, you Dog, I am not inconsistent at all, and if I had the
ordering of you, I'd make you sensible of it; I'd make you think your
self damn'd for want of a Devil.
Gr. That's like one of your Grace's paradoxes, such as when you
swore by God that you did not believe there was any such thing as a
God, or Devil; so you swear by nothing, and damn me to no where.
D. You are a critical Dog, who taught you to believe these solemn
trifles? who taught you to say there is a GOD?
Gr. Nay, I had a better school-master than my Lord Duke.
D. Why, who was your school-master pray?
Gr. The Devil, and't please your Grace.
D. The Devil! the Devil he did? what you're going to quote
Scripture, are you? Prithee don't tell me of Scripture, I know what
you mean, the Devils believe and tremble; why then I have the
whip-hand of the Devil, for I hate trembling; and I am deliver'd from
it effectually, for I never believed any thing of it, and therefore I
Gr. And there, indeed, I am a wickeder creature than the Devil, or
even than my Lord Duke, for I believe, and yet don't tremble neither.
D. Nay, if you are come to your penitentials I have done with you.
Gr. And I think I must have done with my Lord Duke, for the same
D. Ay, ay, pray do, I'll go and enjoy my self; I won't throw away
the pleasure of my life, I know the consequence of it.
Gr. And I'll go and reform my self, else I know the consequence too.
This short Dialogue happen'd between two men of quality, and both men of
wit too; and the effect was, that the Lord brought the reality of the
Devil into the question, and the debate brought the profligate to be a
penitent; so in short, the Devil was made a preacher of repentance.
The Truth is, God and the Devil, however opposite in their nature,
and remote from one another in their place of abiding, seem to stand
pretty much upon a level in our faith: For as to our believing the
reality of their existence, he that denies one, generally denies both;
and he that believes one, necessarily believes both.
Very few, if any of those who believe there is a GOD, and acknowledge
the debt of homage which mankind owes to the supreme Governor of the
World, doubt the existence of the Devil, except here and there one,
whom we call practical Atheists; and 'tis the character of an Atheist,
if there is such a creature on Earth, that like my Lord Duke, he
believes neither GOD or Devil.
As the belief of both these stands upon a level, and that GOD and the
Devil seem to have an equal share in our faith, so the evidence of
their existence seems to stand upon a level too, in many things; and as
they are known by their Works in the same particular cases, so they are
discover'd after the same manner of demonstration.
Nay, in some respects 'tis equally criminal to deny the reality of them
both, only with this difference, that to believe the existence of a GOD
is a debt to nature, and to believe the existence of the Devil is a
like debt to reason; one is a demonstration from the reality of visible
causes, and the other a deduction from the like reality of their
One demonstration of the existence of GOD, is from the universal
well-guided consent of all nations to worship and adore a supreme Power;
One demonstration of the existence of the Devil, is from the avow'd
ill-guided consent of some nations, who knowing no other GOD, make a GOD
of the Devil, for want of a better.
It may be true, that those nations have no other Ideas of the Devil than
as of a superior Power; if they thought him a supreme Power it would
have other effects on them, and they would submit to and worship him
with a different kind of fear.
But 'tis plain they have right notions of him as a Devil or evil Spirit,
because the best reason, and in some places the only reason they give
for worshiping him is, that he may do them no hurt; having no notions at
all of his having any power, much less any inclination to do them good;
so that indeed they make a meer Devil of him, at the same time that
they bow to him as to a GOD.
All the ages of Paganism in the World have had this notion of the
Devil: indeed in some parts of the World they had also some Deities
which they honour'd above him, as being supposed to be beneficent, kind
and inclined, as well as capable to give them good things; for this
reason the more polite Heathens, such as the Grecians and the
Romans, had their Lares or houshold Gods, whom they paid a
particular respect to; as being their Protectors from Hobgoblins, Ghosts
of the Dead, evil Spirits, frightful Appearances, evil Genius's and
other noxious Beings from the invisible World; or to put it into the
language of the day we live in, from the Devil, in whatever shape or
appearance he might come to them, and from whatever might hurt them: and
what was all this but setting up Devils against Devils, supplicating
one Devil under the notion of a good Spirit, to drive out and protect
them from another, whom they call'd a bad Spirit, the white Devil
against the black Devil?
This proceeds from the natural notions mankind necessarily entertain of
things to come; superior or inferior, GOD and the Devil, fill up
all futurity in our thoughts; and 'tis impossible for us to form any
images in our minds of an immortality and an invisible World, but under
the notions of perfect felicity, or extreme misery.
Now as these two respect the Eternal state of man after life, they are
respectively the object of our reverence and affection, or of our
horror and aversion; but notwithstanding they are plac'd thus in a
diametrical opposition in our affections and passions, they are on an
evident level as to the certainty of their existence, and, as I said
above, bear an equal share in our faith.
It being then as certain that there is a Devil, as that there is a
God, I must from this time forward admit no more doubt of his
existence, nor take any more pains to convince you of it; but speaking
of him as a reality in Being, proceed to enquire who he is, and from
whence, in order to enter directly into the detail of his History.
Now not to enter into all the metaphysical trumpery of his Schools, nor
wholly to confine my self to the language of the Pulpit; where we are
told, that to think of GOD and of the Devil, we must endeavour first
to form Ideas of those things which illustrate the description of
rewards and punishments; in the one the eternal presence of the highest
good, and, as a necessary attendant, the most perfect, consummate,
durable bliss and felicity, springing from the presence of that Being in
whom all possible Beatitude is inexpressibly present, and that in the
highest perfection: On the contrary, to conceive of a sublime fallen
Arch-angel, attended with an innumerable host of degenerate, rebel
Seraphs or Angels cast out of Heaven together; all guilty of
inexpressible rebellion, and all suffering from that time, and to suffer
for ever the eternal vengeance of the Almighty, in an inconceivable
manner; that his presence, tho' blessed in it self, is to them the most
compleat article of terror; That they are in themselves perfectly
miserable; and to be with whom for ever, adds an inexpressible misery to
any state as well as place; and fills the minds of those who are to be,
or expect to be banish'd to them with inconceivable horror and
But when you have gone over all this, and a great deal more of the like,
tho' less intelligible language, which the passions of men collect to
amuse one another with; you have said nothing if you omit the main
article, namely, the personality of the Devil; and till you add to all
the rest some description of the company with whom all this is to be
suffer'd, viz. the Devil and his Angels.
Now who this Devil and his Angels are, what share they have either
actively or passively in the eternal miseries of a future state, how far
they are Agents in or Partners with the sufferings of the place, is a
difficulty yet not fully discover'd by the most learned; nor do I
believe 'tis made less a difficulty by their medling with it.
But to come to the person and original of the Devil, or, as I said
before, of Devils; I allow him to come of an ancient family, for he is
from Heaven, and more truly than the Romans could say of their
idoliz'd Numa, he is of the race of the Gods.
That Satan is a fallen Angel, a rebel Seraph, cast out for his
Rebellion, is the general opinion, and 'tis not my business to dispute
things universally receiv'd; as he was try'd, condemn'd, and the
sentence of expulsion executed on him in Heaven, he is in this World
like a transported Felon never to return; His crime, whatever particular
aggravations it might have, 'tis certain, amounted to High-treason
against his Lord and Governor, who was also his Maker; against whom he
rose in rebellion, took up arms, and in a word, rais'd a horrid and
unnatural war in his dominions; but being overcome in battle, and made
prisoner, he and all his Host, whose numbers were infinite, all
glorious Angels like himself, lost at once their beauty and glory with
their Innocence, and commenc'd Devils, being transform'd by crime into
monsters and frightful objects; such as to describe, human fancy is
obliged to draw pictures and descriptions in such forms as are most
hateful and frightful to the imagination.
These notions, I doubt not, gave birth to all the beauteous Images and
sublime expressions in Mr. Milton's majestick Poem; where, tho' he has
play'd the Poet in a most luxuriant manner, he has sinn'd against
Satan most egregiously, and done the Devil a manifest injury in a
great many particulars, as I shall shew in its place. And as I shall be
oblig'd to do Satan justice when I come to that part of his History,
Mr. Milton's admirers must pardon me, if I let them see, that tho' I
admire Mr. Milton as a Poet, yet that he was greatly out in matters of
History, and especially the History of the Devil; in short, That he
has charged Satan falsly in several particulars; and so he has Adam
and Eve too: But that I shall leave till I come to the History of the
Royal Family of Eden; which I resolve to present you with when the
Devil and I have done with one another.
But not to run down Mr. Milton neither, whose poetry, or his judgment,
cannot be reproached without injury to our own; all those bright Ideas
of his, which make his poem so justly valued, whether they are capable
of proof as to the fact, are notwithstanding, confirmations of my
hypothesis; and are taken from a supposition of the Personality of the
Devil, placing him at the head of the infernal host, as a sovereign
elevated Spirit and Monarch of Hell; and as such it is that I undertake
to write his history.
By the word Hell I do not suppose, or at least not determine, that his
residence, or that of the whole army of Devils, is yet in the same
local HELL, to which the Divines tell us he shall be at last chain'd
down; or at least that he is yet confin'd to it, for we shall find he is
at present a prisoner at large: of both which circumstances of Satan I
shall take occasion to speak in its course.
But when I call the Devil the Monarch of Hell, I am to be understood
as suits to the present purpose; that he is the Sovereign of all the
race of Hell, that is to say of all the Devils or Spirits of the
infernal Clan, let their numbers, quality and powers be what they will.
Upon this supposed personality and superiority of Satan, or, as I call
it, the sovereignty and government of one Devil above all the rest; I
say, upon this notion are form'd all the systems of the dark side of
futurity, that we can form in our minds: And so general is the opinion
of it, that it will hardly bear to be oppos'd by any other argument, at
least that will bear to be reason'd upon: All the notions of a parity of
Devils, or making a common-wealth among the black Divan, seem to be
enthusiastick and visionary, but with no consistency or certainty, and
is so generally exploded, that we must not venture so much as to debate
Taking it then as the generality of mankind do, that there is a Grand
Devil, a superior of the whole black race; that they all fell, together
with their General, Satan, at the head of them; that tho' he, Satan,
could not maintain his high station in Heaven, yet that he did continue
his dignity among the rest, who are call'd his servants, in Scripture
his Angels; that he has a kind of dominion or authority over the rest,
and that they were all, how many millions soever in number, at his
command; employ'd by him in all his hellish designs, and in all his
wicked contrivances for the destruction of man, and for the setting up
his own kingdom in the world.
Supposing then that there is such a superior Master-Devil over all the
rest, it remains that we enquire into his character, and something of
his History; in which, tho' we cannot perhaps produce such authentick
documents as in the story of other great Monarchs, Tyrants, and Furies
of the World; yet I shall endeavour to speak some things which the
experience of mankind may be apt to confirm, and which the Devil himself
will hardly be able to contradict.
It being then granted that there is such a thing or person, call him
which we will, as a Master-Devil; that he is thus superior to all the
rest in power and in authority, and that all the other evil Spirits are
his Angels, or Ministers, or Officers to execute his commands, and are
employ'd in his business; it remains to enquire, whence he came? how he
got hither, into this World? what that business is which he is employ'd
about? what his present state is, and where and to what part of the
creation of God he is limited and restrained? what the liberties are he
takes or is allow'd to take? in what manner he works, and how his
instruments are likewise allow'd to work? what he has done ever since he
commenc'd Devil, what he is now doing, and what he may yet do before his
last and closer confinement? as also what he cannot do, and how far we
may or may not be said to be exposed to him, or have or have not reason
to be afraid of him? These, and whatever else occurs in the History and
conduct of this Arch-devil and his Agents, that may be useful for
information, caution, or diversion, you may expect in the process of
I know it has been question'd by some, with more face than fear, how it
consists with a compleat victory of the Devil, which they say was at
first obtained by the Heavenly Powers over Satan and his apostate army
in Heaven, that when he was cast out of his holy place, and dash'd
down into the abyss of eternal darkness, as into a place of punishment,
a condemn'd hold, or place of confinement, to be reserved there to the
judgment of the great Day; I say, how it consists with that entire
victory, to let him loose again, and give him liberty, like a thief that
has broken prison, to range about God's creation, and there to continue
his rebellion, commit new ravages, and acts of hostility against God,
make new efforts at dethroning the almighty Creator; and in particular
to fall upon the weakest of his creatures, MAN? how Satan being so
entirely vanquish'd, he should be permitted to recover any of his wicked
powers, and find room to do mischief to mankind.
Nay they go farther, and suggest bold things against the wisdom of
Heaven, in exposing mankind, weak in comparison of the immense extent of
the Devil's power, to so manifest an overthrow, to so unequal a fight,
in which he is sure, if alone in the conflict, to be worsted; to leave
him such a dreadful enemy to engage with, and so ill furnish'd with
weapons to assist him.
These objections I shall give as good an answer to as the case will
admit in this course, but must adjourn them for the present.
That the Devil is not yet a close prisoner, we have evidence enough to
confirm; I will not suggest, that like our Newgate Thieves, (to bring
little Devils and great Devils together) he is let out by connivance,
and has some little latitudes and advantages for mischief, by that
means; returning at certain seasons to his confinement again. This
might hold, were it not, that the comparison must suggest, that the
power which has cast him down could be deluded, and the under-keepers or
jaylors, under whose charge he was in custody, could wink at his
excursions, and the Lord of the place know nothing of the matter. But
this wants farther explanation.
Next: Of The Original Of The Devil Who He Is And What He Was Before His Expulsion Out Of Heaven And In What State He Was From That Ti
Previous: Being An Introduction To The Whole Work