A comprehensive look at the history and practices of rural English witchcraft
- Explores witch's familiars and fetches, animal magic, and the forms of witchcraft practised by rural tradespeople, such as blacksmiths, herbalists, and artisans
- Offers practical insight into spells, charms, folk incantations, herbal medicine practices, amulets, sigils, and tools of the craft
- Details the evolution of public perception of witchcraft throughout England's history, including the laws against witchcraft in place until the 1950's and witchcraft's contentious relationship with the Christian church.
Pennick explains the best times of day for different types of magic, how to identify places of power, and the use of the paraphernalia of operative witchcraft, such as the broom, the witches' dial, and pins, nails and thorns. He explores the belief in three different types of witches: white witches, who offer help and healing for a fee; black witches, who harm others; and grey witches, who practice both white and black magic. Examining witchcraft's contentious relationship with the Christian church, he investigates the persecution of witches throughout the UK and the British West Indies up until the mid-20th century.
He offers a look into the changing public perceptions of witchcraft and the treatment of its followers as well as revealing how English churchmen would offer magical solutions to the perceived threat of black witchcraft. Painting an in-depth picture of English witchcraft, including how it relates to and differs from modern Wicca, Pennick reveals the foundation from which modern witchcraft arose. He shows how this context is necessary to effectively use these ancient skills and techniques and how the evolution of witchcraft will continue harmonising the old ways with the new.
Paperback, 208 pages
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