Nicholaj De Mattos Frisvold

Nicholaj De Mattos Frisvold is an anthropologist and psychologist who over the course of the last fifteen years been studying, both academically and practically, African and Afro-derived cults in the New World. This has led to a multiplicity of initiations into Vodou, both from Benin and Haiti, Santeria, Kimbanda, Palo Mayombe and Ifá. He belongs to the council of elders in the Ogboni society of Abeokuta, Nigeria. He has for the last decade lived in Brazil where his studies and involvement in traditional forms of metaphysics, faith, cult and witchcraft is a constant theme in his life.

His full length works with Scarlet Imprint are:

Pomba Gira & the Quimbanda of Mbumba Nzila, a study of the Devil’s Mistress in Quimbanda.

Exu & the Quimbanda of Night and Fire, the strong companion to Pomba Gira and together with her this forms the most complete account of this sorcerous cult. Exu is the fusion of Umbanda, Angolan sorcery and European demonology, erupting in a uniquely Brazilian cult of practical magical action. Spells, workings, hierarchies and origins are all given in detail.

Palo Mayombe: The Garden of Blood and Bones, an initiates account of this much maligned religion and cult whose central nigromantic mystery is the prenda, the cauldron containing the human skull or bones, reanimated by living spirit.

Ifa: A Forest of Mystery, is a major study on the cosmology, metaphysics, philosophy and divination system of Ifá, in which he is a tradition holder.

These books are considered crucial by many initiates of these traditions, and we are delighted to see his work being read with approval by Paleros, Quimbandeiros and those working in Santeria and Voodou.

Further works for Scarlet Imprint include essays on Ifa in At the Crossroads and on Stregonaria in Serpent Songs: An Anthology of Traditional Craft, which he also curated.

His blog can be read here: and he may be contacted for consultations etc. at

An interview with Nicholaj for Second Heart magazine on Palo Mayombe and his path can be read here: