Magic circle

Circles since ancient times have been reputed for magical properties. They were drawn around beds of the sick and mothers who recently bore children to protect them from demons. Their remnants which are seen in the stone circles of Britain give credence to the importance of the circle. In occultism and magic, the magic circle … Read more

Flying Ointment

The witch flying on a broomstick has become the archetype for magic and witchcraft in the Western world. Integral to this archetype is the often overlooked flying ointment. Also known as transvection, the earliest depiction is Ulrich Molitor’s engraving in De Lamiis (1489). It shows three Witches, each with an animal’s head, each astride a … Read more


Dolls have been used in magical rites since the origins of Man. Little wonder then that witches were said to have used them as well. Typically, these dolls were created by putting some of the victim’s nail clippings or hair into the material from which the doll was fashioned, usually clay, wax or wood. Also … Read more

Witch ball

A witch ball or speculum is a hollow sphere of plain or stained glass hung in cottage windows in 18th century England to ward off evil spirits, witch’s spells or ill fortune, though the Witch’s Ball actually originated among cultures where witches were considered a blessing and these witches would usually “enchant” the balls to … Read more

Witch’s Hat

The stereotypical images of a witch includes the typical tall, black, pointed hat with a broad rim. There are different theories as to the origin of this stereotype. The witch’s hat may go back to antiquity. Ancient Etruscan coins from the city of Luna have a head on one side which may be the goddess … Read more


A quirin or quiru is a folkloric stone allegedly is found in the nests of either the lapwing or the hoopoe, two Old World species of birds often confused in earlier centuries. Quirins were said to have the powers of a truth serum and were highly valued and searched by witches and magicians. When placed … Read more

Body parts

People were afraid of witches, and were horrified of the thought of witches using bodies illicitly. Perhaps the most gruesome of a witch’s tools were the body parts she harvested for use in potions, talismans and spell-casting. Female witches were especially feared. As the ones who gave birth and prepare death rituals, women had access … Read more

The Leaper Between

An Historical Study of the Toad-bone Amulet; its forms, functions, and praxes in popular magic.   By Andrew D. Chumbley ¬©Andrew D. Chumbley, 2001 ……………………………. “And the Lord spake unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch forth thine hand with thy rod over the streams, over the rivers, and over the ponds, and cause frogs to … Read more