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The Witch of Treva – A Cornish Legend

By Pollyanna Jones

Cornwall lies on the south west tip of the British Isles, and is considered by many to be one of the Celtic nations. With its own language and distinct culture, the Kingdom, or Duchy of Cornwall, has it’s own strong identity that is embellished by its wealth of folklore.

Witches and pellers are not uncommon in this region, with stories a-plenty of their exploits and powers. This tale comes from a hamlet near Zennor, which is a small village on the north west tip of Cornwall, and is adapted from “Popular Romances of the West of England; or, The Drolls, Traditions, and Superstitions of Old Cornwall” by Robert Hunt (1908)

The Witch of Treva

Many years ago, there lived in Treva, a woman who was skilled in charms, spells, and witchcraft. He reputation was well known, and by the time she was an old lady, she was said to be deeply skilled in dark incantations and necromancy.

The locals all held her in respect, awe, and fear, but her old husband would have none of it and considered it all gossip. If a woman was old and ill-mannered enough, rumours would soon fix fast on assumptions that she was a witch. She bullied everyone else with threats of curses, but she would not bully him. After all, a husband was a wife’s master, so why should he be cowed by her supposed powers?

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