Alternatively known as Bel, Bael and Baell.
Originally, one of the fertility gods of the Semites, possibly the male counterpart of the goddess Belet. He was certainly associated with Astoreth as the male consort to this Queen of Heaven. Many minor deities of ancient Syria and Persia carried the name Baal, which means "lord." The Canaanites worshipped Baal by sacrificing children by burning.
In demonology, one of the fallen angels. According to the Zohar, Baal is equal in rank to the archangel Raphael.
The first of the 72 spirits of Solomon (the 72 demons of the Goetia), Bael is a great and powerful king of Hell who governs the Eastern infernal regions, and is said to appear on conjuration in many different shapes, including that of a man with the head of a cat or toad, or even a human head. Sometimes he may appear with all three heads on a single body. He is also said to speak with a hoarse and guttural voice.
Derived in demonic lore from the Enochian demons literature, Bael's infernal duties include conferring all forms of knowledge and satisfying all cravings. He is also said to impart invisibility to his followers.
Bael commands 66 legions of the damned, a troop of vicious demons who assist him in his nefarious endeavors.
Besides being the first of the 72 demons named in the Goetia, Bael is also mentioned in Wierus's Pseudomonarchia Daemonum and Scot's Discoverie of Witchcraft.
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Sources: (1) Masello, Robert, Fallen Angels. . . and Spirits of the Dark, The Berkley Publishing Group; (2) Plangiere, Grimoirium Verum: Containing the Most Approved Keys of Solomon, Trident Books; (3) Guiley, Rosemary Ellen and Zaffis, John, The Encyclopedia of Demons and Demonology, Checkmark Books; (4) Mathers, S.L. MacGregor, Goetia: The Lesser Key of Solomon, CreateSpace Publishers; (5) Belanger, Michelle A., The Dictionary of Demons: Names of the Damned, Llewellyn Publications.
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