Table of correspondences

Table of correspondences

A table of correspondences is a table or list of objects, beings, or concepts thought to be linked through supernatural connections. Tables of correspondences appear in modern books on magic and the occult. They are provided as reference tools in creating spells and casting magic circles. At its most basic, a table of correspondences can be a simple list of colors with their spheres of influence. A complicated table or set of tables can grow to book-length and co-ordinate deities, spirits, and symbols from religions and mythologies around the world. The Wikipedia article on the four humours contains a table of correspondences based on ancient Greek medicine.


The belief that apparently unconnected things share a mystical connection is common to most cultures; it is one of the principles of sympathetic magic identified by anthropologist James George Frazer in "The Golden Bough". Examples of the theory of interconnectedness in Western culture include the concept of macrocosm and microcosm in the philosophy of the followers of Plato, expressed in Hermeticism by the aphorism, "as above, so below"; the doctrine of signatures advocated in the Renaissance by Paracelsus; the Jewish mystical practice of Kabbalah, which Renaissance humanists attempted to Christianize; and the doctrine of correspondence in the theology of Emanuel Swedenborg.

Lists of correspondences are very old and are not limited to books on spellcasting. Gnostic books in the Nag Hammadi Library contain lists of aeons and archons (good and evil beings), correlating them to different virtues and vices. The First Book of Enoch lists fallen angels and their spheres of influence. Medieval grimoires included lists of correspondences.

Magic underwent a revival in the Renaissance partly due to its association with Neoplatonism. In 1531 Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa published his "Three books of occult philosophy", which contained many lists of correspondences. Francis Barrett's "The Magus, or Celestial Intelligencer" (1801, frequently reprinted) repeated many of Agrippa's lists.


A common organizing principle for tables of correspondence is number.
*Two: the binary concepts of Yin and Yang, black and white, left and right, etc.
*Four: the Western classical elements, the four directions, the suits of the Minor Arcana in Tarot decks (also number of court cards in each suit), magical weapons, the canonical gospels, etc.
*Seven: the planets, the days of the week, the archangels, etc.
*Ten: the sefirot of the Tree of Life of the Hebrew Kabbalah and the Ten Commandments, the number of pips in each Tarot suit
*Twelve: the months of the year, the signs of the zodiac, the Twelve Tribes of Israel, the twelve Olympians, etc.
*Twenty-two: the number of major arcana (counting The Fool) in Tarot; the number of paths in the Tree of Life
*Seventy-two: the Shemhamphorasch, numbers of angels, goetica demons, psalms, tarot, zodiac circle


* Bill Whitcomb, "The Magician's Companion", Llewellyn's High Magic Series. (Many tables of correspondence with some discussion and overview).

External links

* [ "The Occult Science of Talismanic Correspondences" by David Cramb Wilson]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Table of lunar month correspondences — This is a table of lunar month correspondences. The correspondences given are NOT exact; however, aside from the first few days and last few days of a lunar month, they are true (if this author is not mistaken) …   Wikipedia

  • Afro-Asiatic lexical correspondences — ▪ Table Afro Asiatic lexical correspondences Afroasiatic Chadic Cushitic Egyptian Amazigh Semitic bone * E33;š * be;Jašu gaas horn (Rendille) E33;s ix e63; child *wl *wəlo weel (Rendille) ult daughter walad (Arabic) to die *m(w)t *mətə mut… …   Universalium

  • Chinese calendar correspondence table — Main article: Chinese calendar This table shows the stem/branch year names, correspondences to the Western (Gregorian) calendar, and other related information for the current, 79th sexagenary cycle of the Chinese calendar (or the 78th cycle if an …   Wikipedia

  • Classical element — For other uses of 4 elements, see Four elements (disambiguation). For other uses of 5 elements, see Five elements (disambiguation). Many philosophies and worldviews have a set of classical elements believed to reflect the simplest essential parts …   Wikipedia

  • Watchtower (magic) — A Watchtower is a spirit guardian of one of the four cardinal points in both ceremonial magic and the neopagan religion of Wicca. Alternately, the Watchtowers are the abodes of the guardians. Often believed to represent the four elements, the… …   Wikipedia

  • Ceremonial magic — Ceremonial magic, also referred to as high magic and as learned magic,[1] is a broad term used in the context of Hermeticism or Western esotericism to encompass a wide variety of long, elaborate, and complex rituals of magic. It is named as such… …   Wikipedia

  • List of magical terms and traditions — This is a list of magical terms and traditions dealing with various occult practices, traditions, and components of magic. This list is not intended for topics like stage magic, illusion, or other entertainment based definition. It is also not… …   Wikipedia

  • Pentagram — For other uses, see Pentagram (disambiguation). Regular pentagram A pentagram Type Star polygon Edges and vertices 5 Schläfli symbol {5/2} …   Wikipedia

  • Enochian magic — is a system of ceremonial magic based on the evocation and commanding of various spirits. It is based on the 16th century writings of Dr. John Dee and Edward Kelley, who claimed that their information was delivered to them directly by various… …   Wikipedia

  • Guna — The Sanskrit word IAST|guṇa has the basic meaning of string or a single thread or strand of a cord or twine . In more abstract uses, it may mean a subdivision, species, kind , and generally quality .In Samkhya philosophy there are three… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.