Věra Chládková - Alena M. Černá

Seventy two divine names – their origin and secular use


The collection of seventy two divine names is preserved in several different manuscripts written in Czech as a part of a work on “medicin” written by an unknown Franciscan in the 15th century. The names are supposed to be written on a sheet in order to secure a person from specific diseases or injuries.

The article specifies the linguistic (Hebrew, Latin or Greek) and textual (biblical or non-biblical) origin of the names, and traces their employment in medieval literature, esp. Czech written documents (the bible, the psalter, the work of Jan Hus). Great encyclopedians of the medieval Europe are also taken into account: Isidor of Sevilla (esp. his Etymologies), Bartholomew of England and his Bohemian counterpart Bartholomeus of Solencia, known as Claretus, from whose works the collection of divine names was probably transmitted.