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The Seventy-Two Names of God, a Christian diagram; the IHS is a monogram for "Jesus" (in the Oedipus Aegyptiacus).

The Shemhamphorasch (alternatively Shem ha-Mephorash or Schemhamphoras, originally Shem HaMephorash (שם המפורש)) is an originally Tannaitic term[1] describing a hidden name of God in Kabbalah (including Christian and Hermetic variants), and in some more mainstream Jewish discourses. It is composed of either 4, 12, 22, 42, or 72 letters (or triads of letters), the last version being the most common.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8]

12-, 22-, and 42-letter versions

Maimonides thought the Shem ha-Mephorash was used only for the four letter Tetragrammaton.[1]

A 12-letter variant appears in the Talmud, though it was unknown in later Kabbalah and completely absent from Jewish magic.[5]

A 22-letter variant is first written down in Sefer Raziel HaMalakh,[5][7] without interpretation, as אנקתם פסתמ פספסים דיונסים (likely transliterated as Anaktam Pastam Paspasim Dionsim). Its origins are unknown, with no connection to Hebrew or Aramaic being found, and no agreement on any particular Greek or Zoroastrian origin. There are Geonic precedents for the name, indicating that the name is older than Sefer Raziel.[5]

A 42-letter variant was described by Hai Gaon as אדגיתץ קרעשטן נגדיכש בטרצתג חקדטנע יגלפזק שקוצית. He wrote "Although the consonants of this name are well known, its proper vocalization is not rendered by tradition. Some pronounce its first part Adgitaẓ, and others Adigtaẓ, and the last part is sometimes read Shakvaẓit, and sometimes Shekuẓit, but there is no definite proof." This variation in pronunciation was understood by Joshua Trachtenberg to indicate that this version is quite ancient, the vowels in Hebrew being easily lost over time. It is, by some means, derived from the first 42 letters of the Hebrew Bible.[5] Like the 22-letter name, it is found in Sefer Raziel.[7]

The 72-fold name

The "72-fold name" is highly important to Sefer Raziel,[5][7] and a key (but often missing) component to the magical practices in The Lesser Key of Solomon.[8] It is derived from Exodus 14:19-21,[2][4][5][6] read boustrophedonically[3][8] to produce 72 names of three letters. This method was expounded with no difficulty by Rashi, apparently widely known throughout the Geonic period.[5] Kabbalist and occultist legends state that the 72-fold name was used by Moses to cross the Red Sea, and that it can grant later holymen the power to control demons, heal the sick, prevent natural disasters, and even kill enemies.[6]

The 72-fold name is mentioned by Roger Bacon, who complained about a book titled Liber semamphoras, more specifically the linguistic corruption that occurred in translating Hebrew to Latin.[9] The angels of the Shemhamphorash factored heavily into the cosmology of Johann Reuchlin[10] influencing Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa[3] and Athanasius Kircher.[10] Thomas Rudd featured the 72 angels in his magic,[2] as a balancing force against the evil spirits of the Ars Goetia[8] or in isolation.[11] Rudd's material on the Shemhamphorash was later copied and expanded by Blaise de Vigenère, whose manuscripts were in turn used by Samuel Liddell MacGregor Mathers in his works for the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.[8]

Angels of the Shemhamphorash

Angel[12][13][14] Ruling angel

(per Ambelain)[12]

Order (per




Demon ruled

(per Rudd)[14]

1. Vehuiah Metatron Seraphim Psalms 3:3 Bael
2. Jelial Metatron Seraphim Psalms 22:19 Agares
3. Sitael Metatron Seraphim Psalms 91:2 Vassago
4. Elemiah Metatron Seraphim Psalms 6:4 Gamigin
5. Mahasiah Metatron Seraphim Psalms 34:4 Marbas
6. Lehahel Metatron Seraphim Psalms 9:11 Valefar
7. Achaiah Metatron Seraphim Psalms 103:8 Aamon
8. Cahetel Metatron Seraphim Psalms 95:6 Barbatos
9. Haziel Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 25:6 Paimon
10. Aladiah Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 33:22 Buer
11. Lauviah Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 18:46 Gusion
12. Hahaiah Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 10:1 Sitri
13. Iezalel Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 98:4 Beleth
14. Mehahel Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 9:9 Leraje
15. Hariel Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 94:22 Eligor
16. Hakamiah Jophiel Cherubim Psalms 88:1 Zepar
17. Lauviah Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 8:9 Botis
18. Caliel Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 35:24 Bathin
19. Leuviah Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 40:1 Saleos
20. Pahaliah Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 120:1-2 Purson
21. Nelchael Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 31:14 Morax
22. Ieiaiel Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 121:5 Ipos
23. Melahel Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 121:8 Aim
24. Haniniah Zaphkiel Thrones Psalms 33:18 Naberus
25. Nilaihah Zadkiel Dominations [sic] Psalms 9:1 Glasya-Labolas
26. Haaiah Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 119:145 Bune
27. Ierathel Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 140:1 Ronove
28. Seehiah Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 71:12 Berith
29. Reiiel Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 54:4 Astaroth
30. Omael Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 71:5 Forneus
31. Lecahel Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 71:16 Foras
32. Yasariah Zadkiel Dominations Psalms 33:4 Asmodeus
33. Ieuiah Kamael Powers Psalms 94:11 Gaap
34. Lehahaiah Kamael Powers Psalms 131:3 Furfur
35. Chavakiah Kamael Powers Psalms 116:1 Marchosias
36. Menadel Kamael Powers Psalms 26:8 Stolas
37. Aniel Kamael Powers Psalms 80:3 Phenex
38. Haamiah Kamael Powers Psalms 91:9 Halphas
39. Rehael Kamael Powers Psalms 30:10 Malphas
40. Ieiazel Kamael Powers Psalms 88:14 Raum
41. Hahael Raphael Virtues Psalms 120:2 Focalor
42. Mikael Raphael Virtues Psalms 121:7 Vepar
43. Veualiah Raphael Virtues Psalms 88:13 Sabnock
44. Ielahiah Raphael Virtues Psalms 119:108 Shax
45. Sealiah Raphael Virtues Psalms 94:18 Vine
46. Ariel Raphael Virtues Psalms 145:9 Bifrons
47. Asaliah Raphael Virtues Psalms 92:5 Vual
48. Mihael Raphael Virtues Psalms 98:2 Haagenti
49. Vehuel Haniel Principalities Psalms 145:3 Crocell
50. Daniel Haniel Principalities Psalms 145:8 Furcas
51. Hahasiah Haniel Principalities Psalms 104:31 Balam
52. Imamiah Haniel Principalities Psalms 7:17 Allocer
53. Nanael Haniel Principalities Psalms 119:75 Caim
54. Nilhael Haniel Principalities Psalms 103:19 Murmur
55. Mehaiah Haniel Principalities Psalms 102:12 Orobas
56. Poiel Haniel Principalities Psalms 145:14 Gremory
57. Nemamiah Michael Archangels Psalms 115:11 Ose
58. Ieialel Michael Archangels Psalms 6:3 Auns
59. Harael Michael Archangels Psalms 113:3 Orias
60. Mitzrael Michael Archangels Psalms 145:17 Vapula
61. Umahel Michael Archangels Psalms 113:2 Zagan
62. Iahhel Michael Archangels Psalms 119:159 Valac
63. Ananel Michael Archangels Psalms 100:2 Andras
64. Mehriel Michael Archangels Psalms 33:18 Flauros
65. Damabiah Gabriel Angels Psalms 90:13 Andrealphus
66. Manakel Gabriel Angels Psalms 38:21 Cimeries
67. Eidel Gabriel Angels Psalms 37:4 Amduscias
68. Hahniah Gabriel Angels Psalms 106:1 Belial
69. Rochel Gabriel Angels Psalms 16:5 Decarabia
70. Jabamiah Gabriel Angels Genesis 1:1 Seere
71. Haiaiel Gabriel Angels Psalms 109:30 Dantalion
72. Mumiah Gabriel Angels Psalms 116:7 Andromalius


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Jewish Encyclopedia, Shem Ha-Meforash". Retrieved 2013-07-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Arguing with Angels: Enochian Magic and Modern Occulture, by Egil Asprem, SUNY Press, 2 Apr 2012, p.33
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 The Black Arts, by Richard Cavendish, Penguin Group, p.119
  4. 4.0 4.1 Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology (Fifth edition), "Shemhamphorash", ed. J. Gordon Melton, Gale Group, p. 1399
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 Jewish Magic and Superstition, by Joshua Trachtenberg, Behrman's Jewish Book House, 1939; hosted at The Internet Sacred Text Archive, 2008; p.90-98 and notes for the section on p.288 and onward
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Magic, Mystery, and Science: The Occult in Western Civilization, by Dan Burton and David Grandy, Indiana University Press, 2004, p.69
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Sepher Raziel Hemelach: The Book of the Angel Raziel, trans. Steve Savedow, Weiser Books, p.18
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 The Goetia of Dr Rudd, by Thomas Rudd, Ed. Stephen Skinner & David Rankine, 2007, Golden Hoard Press. p.14, 39-44, 67-73
  9. Invoking angels, by Claire Fanger, Penn State UP, p. 60-61
  10. 10.0 10.1 Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esoterism ed. Wouter Hanegraaf, Brill Publishers, p.625
  11. Dr. Rudd's Treatise on Angel Magick, by Thomas Rudd, ed. Adam McLean, Weiser Books, 2006 reprint. p.43-50
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 The Complete Magician's Tables, by Stephen Skinner, Golden Hoard Press, 2006, p.41-48
  13. 13.0 13.1 Rudd, ed. Skinner & Rankine p.408-412
  14. 14.0 14.1 Rudd, ed. Skinner & Rankine, p.366-376

Further reading

External links