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Witch-bottles

The practice of concealing witch-bottles appears to have started in the sixteenth century. Almost invariably in the 16th and 17th centuries a grey stoneware bottle colloquially known as the ‘bellarmine’ was used. It got its name (after the practice began) from a Cardinal called Bellarmine who published much anti-Protestant literature. These bottles are pot bellied . . . → Read More: Witch-bottles

20 Gnarliest Torture Devices of All Time

What would have been the worst aspect of life during the European middle ages? Heinous personal hygiene? No. Disease and famine? Hardly. That really crappy mandolin music that midgets enjoy dancing to? Close, but wrong again. The worst thing about medieval life was the unwavering evil of the Christian “justice” system and the tools of . . . → Read More: 20 Gnarliest Torture Devices of All Time

Lammas

It was upon a Lammas Night When corn rigs are bonny, Beneath the Moon’s unclouded light, I held awhile to Annie… ==Robbie Burns

Lammas marks the middle of summer and beginning of the harvest season. Lammas is considered a time of thanksgiving and is the first of the three Pagan harvest festivals. The Sun’s strength . . . → Read More: Lammas

Magic, Prayer and Props

by Ali “Ritual is poetry in the realm of acts.”— Ross Nichols, founder of OBOD

Is magic simply “prayer with props, ” or is it something more? It seems to me that there is a fundamental difference between “prayer” and “magic.” Let’s start by looking first at the common definitions of these words:

Prayer(noun) . . . → Read More: Magic, Prayer and Props

The Jackalope

The jackalope is an antlered species of rabbit, unfortunately rumored to be extinct, though occasional sightings of this rare creature continue to occur, suggesting that pockets of jackalope populations continue to persist in its native home, the American West.

The jackalope is an aggressive species, willing to use its antlers to fight. Thus, it . . . → Read More: The Jackalope

Household Tales.

Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm

The Pack of Ragamuffins

THE COCK once said to the hen, “It is now the time when the nuts are ripe, so let us go to the hill together and for once eat our fill before the squirrel takes them all away.” “Yes,” replied the hen, “come, we will have . . . → Read More: Household Tales.

The Olive Tree

Olive trees have a history as old as civilization. Olive-leaf fossils have been discovered in Pliocene-period deposits in Italy. An olive seed found in Spain has been carbon-dated at 8,000 years of age. The Olive leaf is the portion of this plant valued for its medicinal value. The olive tree has been prized by mankind . . . → Read More: The Olive Tree

Witchcraft Here and There

by Jennifer Emick Witchcraft is viewed with varying degrees of acceptance and legality, and while it is in creasingly accepted in the West, things appear to be getting progressively worse for magical practitioners- and those simply suspected of practicing- in other parts of the world. In Delhi, India, a man who suspected black magic in . . . → Read More: Witchcraft Here and There

The Naming of Athens

Arkas was relaxing at home after eating his fill at the evening meal. He had just worked a hard day in the fields because it was harvest – that plentiful season. Huh, he thought, crops aren’t the only things the harvest brings plenty of. My back’s been aching since mid-morning! He had sent for his . . . → Read More: The Naming of Athens

Bewitched by life as a disabled pagan

Caitlin Davies married her partner in a pagan wedding ceremony during the summer solstice celebrations at Stonehenge, but being a “witch on wheels” has often provoked hatred and discrimination. On 21 June, I was lucky enough to be among 23,000 people attending the summer solstice celebrations at Stonehenge, in Wiltshire. Being a disabled pagan – . . . → Read More: Bewitched by life as a disabled pagan