Zimimar and Clark Ashton Smith

Sometimes you come across a minor discovery that isn’t worthy of a full-fledged exploration, but is of interest nonetheless.

This post might be considered a small correction to The Complete Poetry and Translations of Clark Ashton Smith, the associate and correspondent of Lovecraft.  Within that work, we find the work, “The Sorcerer to His Love,” which begins:

Within your arms I will forget
The horror that Zimimar brings
Between his vast and vampire wings
From out his frozen oubliette.

The notes assure us that “Zimimar… is CAS’ invention.”  Yet there is another possible source, as Zimimar is also cited in Reginald Scot’s Discoverie of Witchcraft:

AMAYMON king of the east, Gorson king of the south, Zimimar king of the north, Goap king and prince of the west, may be bound from the third houre, till noone, and from the ninth houre till evening.

Smith’s most likely source for this information was Spence’s Encyclopedia of Occultism, though I wouldn’t necessarily rule out other possibilities.

EDIT:  Dan Clore published this discovery in his book Weird Words a couple years ago, but I have yet to see that book.  Too damn much to read already.

Published in: on January 14, 2011 at 10:27 pm  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Smith used the name elsewhere as well. In his short, “Schizoid Creator”, there’s the passage,

    “When Bifrons departed, Satan summoned his chief lieutenants before him in the halls of Pandemonium.

    “‘I am going away for a while,’ he told them. ‘There are certain obligations of a pressing nature that call me—and I must not neglect them too long. In my absence, I consign the management of Hell to your competent hands.’

    “Bowing reversely, Gorson, Goap, Zimimar and Amaimon, lords of the four quarters, went out one after one, leaving their prince alone.”

  2. I covered this in the entry for Zimimar in my book Weird Words: A Lovecraftian Lexicon, published in 2009. Do try to keep up.

  3. Here’s the link for the book:

    http://tinyurl.com/yd3bxkw

    This is just one of many original discoveries that I’ve included in the book.


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