The Corpus Hermeticum is a multi-volume text, purportedly authored by Hermes Trismegistus. It combines history, cosmology, philosophy, magic and natural science, and became the founding document of the Order of Hermes.
The texts making up the Corpus Hermeticum, numbering between 12 and 22 volumes, were seemingly written over a period of several centuries. It is unclear whether these volumes have different authors and origins or if the disparate version known in modern times were simply transcribed by different copyists. The texts range from expository prose to dialogues to riddles to poetry, and draw from a variety of sources, including Jewish Qabbalism, Egyptian ritual magic and Zoroastrianism.
The core conceit of the Corpus was the Qabbalistic/Gnostic concept of the divine One, from whom all things (including lesser deities) emanate. This was considered heretical by the early Church, and many copies of the text that fell into Sleeper hands were destroyed.