People have always been superstitious, blaming misfortune and ill health on gods, demons, or spirits. Perhaps the most beloved scapegoat in history however has been the witch—a mysterious woman brewing elixirs and flying to her weekly gatherings. To protect themselves from these supposedly evil and powerful women, people came up with the most curious protective methods you could imagine.
A 15th-century chapel in the Scottish city of Aberdeen was equipped as a prison for accused witches snared during the city's "Great Witch Hunt" in 1597.
Black rituals scared communities over two decades leading to police and church leader warnings
For many in Assam, witchcraft is real. Thankfully, there are women like Birubala Rabha to set people straight
Huddersfield research looked into whether the county was a good place to be a witch in the 1600s
New France was a more enlightened place. It probably helped that women here could aspire to a social prominence denied their sisters in the Puritan colonies. It’s no coincidence that Anne Lamarque was a businesswoman independent of her husband and that she had friends, or at least acquaintances, in positions of authority.
My recent picture of HMS Barham leaving Portsmouth Harbour in the 1930s reminded Calum Kennedy of the unusual connection between the battleship, Portsmouth and witchcraft.
It boils down to a chilling statistics: a death is reported every third day in modern India for witchcraft.
The case of Glory Bassey, a 31-year-old woman from Akwa Ibom state in Southern Nigeria demonstrates the destructive effects of witchcraft beliefs in Nigeria and the threat which the continued belief in occult forces poses to the lives and well being of the people if these mystical notions are not challenged, debunked and dispelled.
Since he was born a year after the Witchcraft and Conjuration Act of 1563 brought about the era of the witch trials in England, it is hardly a surprise that witches and witchcraft would come to feature in Shakespeare’s work.
Medicine at this time was still prone to a belief in the superstitious. Bartisch believed a patient could be diagnosed through their astrological chart or horoscope and that magic, astrology and indeed witchcraft itself played an important role in the diagnosis and treatment of disease.
Was 1600s Yorkshire a good place to be a witch? A history researcher at the University of Huddersfield has been finding out, and her investigations have resulted in a new online article.
Can divination be done through algorithm?
Hardly a new practice, witch-hunting continues across Assam, Chattisgarh and Jharkhand among others, despite law forbidding the same
Welcome to Kenya, one of the most religious countries in the world where people carry Bibles and pray all the time, but still keep a talisman from a witchdoctor for additional security
Helen Duncan may have been a fraud but Britain's wartime government feared her so much they ensured she was charged with witchcraft
The Sonoran Market is a sprawling bazaar dedicated to witchcraft sex, potions, and rituals.
In the age of the athame, a Witch might wonder why we bother putting a wand on the altar at all. But the use of the wand is an ancient practice with deep roots and esoteric history. What is a wand really for, and what does it actually mean?
This is not the first encounter I have had with someone in Liberia who vehemently believes witchcraft exists and has personally experienced its effects. Some of the stories I am told are literally unbelievable, but I remain silent and listen. One of the most dramatic stories of witchcraft was shared with me by a pastor who owns the guest house I stayed at briefly.
Mardoche Yembi was just eight years old when he was blamed for the death of his mother.