Physical Evidence for Ritual Acts, Sorcery and Witchcraft in Christian Britain A Feeling for Magic

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2015-10-28
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
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Physical Evidence for Ritual Acts, Sorcery and Witchcraft in Christian Britain investigates the physical evidence for magic in medieval and modern Britain, including ritual marks and designs, concealed objects, amulets hung about the person and home, and the equipment of folk magicians. The subject has been largely neglected by mainstream historians and archaeologists, and the contributors to this volume represent the current leading experts in each part of it, and often the pioneers of study of it. Between them, they show how ample and convincing the evidence is, and how it forces us to reconsider the history of ritual and religion in Britain since the Middle Ages and admit to the existence of a whole dimension of activity which has hardly been considered before. It should therefore have importance to those interested in British history in general across this large span of time.

Author Biography

Ronald Hutton is Professor of History at Bristol University, UK and the author of many books and essays on the history of religion and magic.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; Ronald Hutton
2. Magic On The Walls: Ritual Protection Marks in the Medieval Church; Matthew Champion
3. Apotropaic Symbols and Other Measures for Protecting Buildings Against Misfortune; Timothy Easton
4. Instances and Contexts of the Head Motif in Britain; John Billingsley
5. Witch Bottles: Their Contents, Contexts and Uses; Brian Hoggard
6. Concealed Animals; Brian Hoggard
7. Shoes Concealed In Buildings; June Swann
8. Garments Concealed Within Buildings: Following the Evidence; Dinah Eastop
9. Spiritual Middens; Timothy Easton
10. Textual Evidence For The Material History Of Amulets In Seventeenth-Century England; Alexander Cummins
11. Amulets: The Material Evidence; Tabitha Cadbury
12. Cunning-Folk and the Production of Magical Artefacts; Owen Davies and Timothy Easton
13. The Wider Picture: Parallel Evidence in America and Australia; Ian Evans, M. Chris Manning and Owen Davies

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