Cabbalism has been explained in even more ways than the name has been spelt. The Latin spelling, from which we get ‘cabal’, is a convenient reminder that most Gothic writers know about ‘the Cabbala’ at second hand. In Ivanhoe, Walter Scott reports ’a general belief … that the Jewish rabbins were acquainted with the occult sciences, and particularly with the cabalistical art, which had its name and origin in the studies of the sages of Israel’. He says the rabbis get respect because they have power to wreak havoc. In the most famous story of havoc, the Great Rabbi of Prague creates an avenger by uttering the secret names he knows as a student of Hebrew, the language of creation; the story is retold in Gustav Meyrink’s The Golem and echoed in Frankenstein (see GOLEM).
KeywordsScience Fiction Late Eighteenth Secret Society Famous Story Sensation Author
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