The Wallsend Witches: a tale for Halloween

Happy Halloween he he he he he…….

The Haunted Palace

The Wallsend Witches

Wallsend is a small town in the North of England.  It is easily overlooked – just another post industrial town that has lost its heavy industry and been taken over by call centres and service industry jobs.  But Wallsend has a long history.  The Roman’s called it Segedunum when they built their fort at the end of Hadrian’s Wall (end of the wall – Wallsend – get it?).   Through the centuries farming gave way to salt panning, glass-making, coal mining and shipbuilding.  For the Roman’s, Wallsend was the end of the world, the border between civilisation and barbarianism, and in such a place anything can happen.

Halloween seems an appropriate time to share one such dark tale – a tale of witchcraft and necromancy.  The following extract is taken from the ‘Monthly Chronicle’ for April 1888 and it describes, in wonderfully florid Victorian prose, the supposed encounter…

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Samhain Blessings )O( video

A friend sent me this poem from FB, which i am not on so i do not know its source:

The veil between the worlds grows thin.

We rest for a few moments on the banks of the river of life.

We gaze downstream to honor those who have crossed over before us.

We look upstream to dream of those who will come after us.

We shed a tear, we smile, we remember,

then plunge back into the rushing waters,

swimming joyously until it is our turn

to cross to the other side.

And this lovely video, which is a little fluffy for me, but i still like it. At my age so many have died and many are on death’s door, even right now. Like Carlos Castaneda once said (to paraphrase) – Go through life aware that Death is always sitting on your left shoulder and live accordingly.

BB

Anti-Witch Bigotry – Still as Popular and Deadly as ever – by Trey Capnerhurst

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Trey Capnerhurst, a traditional witch, performs a naming ceremony by the altar in her backyard in Alberta. Photo from CNN blog with no copyright listed.

Believe it or not I actually saw this am on the CNN Religion blog a good article about Witches and Halloween called For Some Wiccans, Halloween can be a real witch. It has a good link written by Trey Capnerhurst at Witchvox called Anti-Witch Bigotry: Still as Popular and Deadly as ever which makes some good points about if people in other religions were characterized in cartoons like witches are there would be hell to pay. Enjoy.

Samhain Song – by Celestial Elf

Though I am no big fan of avatars in animation, I really liked these two videos put together by Celestial Elf at The Dance of Life blog. The first one is called Samhain Song and below the videos are his words from the video. Note the videos and words are his copyright and I wrote him i would be reblogging them.

The sun is bright nolonger – nor warm,
Old branches hung with sleeping.
The great wheel turns, another year,
Into the darkness fleeting.
Of questions asked with breath bowed words,
leaf rustle – bird’s wing whispers.
The rivers tale unfolds a dream,
Moonlight paints winters whiskers.
As darkest night cracks silent stars,
And shapes shift slowly creeping.
In meadows that the scythe has hewn,
Now Samhain fires are leaping.
The dance of life is spinnning on,
Death cleaves and weaves light lowly.
The welcome chant as earth grows cold,
my heart, a north wind only.
The Veil Is thin and gates wide swung,
The Netherworld is dawning.
Samhain arrives with setting sun,
An Otherworld is yawning.
“Ancestors one and Kinsfolk all,
We invite you now to hearth and hall.
Come tell us of your travels hence,
And share your wisdom, recompence.
I ask you lay your blessings here,
In this season of waning of light.
That darkness not be heavy to bear,
And journeys end be bright.
Now hear the voices of the dead,
Uncounted jewels around us.
Of grandafther gone – grandmother led,
from sky – tree – earth they found us.
And one by one the spirits come,
laughing beside our firesides.
Tender tales of sights unknown,
forewarnings of the darksides.
And all too soon the gathering ends,
beloved friends departing.
To Otherworld they do return,
Another year advancing.
As fires quell – through mists one yell
Samhain’s bright blessing heard we;
My time is come – now heed my tell,
And Ever Joy beside thee;
Our ancient blood runs in your veins,
The spirit of our heart your keep.
Our wisdom shared to guide you on,
Thus Take and Give – Remember.
By Cauldron of Earth and Blossom of Bone,
The Circle of Life is Unbroken.
By Depth of Sea and Light of Star,
The forms of Life are but Token.
So Mote It Be!

The second one is called The Witch – Wise Woman of the People which does have a good ending.

Enjoy and Blessed All Hallows Eve!

All Hallows Ritual at the Coven of the Catta

Coven of the Catta

COC All Hallows 2013 (2)

Left to right – Lady Ember Willow Hawk 3rd* High Priestess, Shawnus Merlin Belarion 3rd* High Priest, Lady Alsace Isa Brie 3rd* Elder High Priestess

Today the Coven was able to all get together for our All Hallows Samhain ritual. We had it today instead of the traditional date since everyone had off work. Witches make due. Lady Ember was able to bring down Lady Alsace and two of Ember’s Probationers and we were able to show them the ritual in full and even have them do some small roles. Lady Ember and Lady Alsace are psychic (not me) and were telling about all the spirits and souls of those who have passed (both humans and pets) for whom we lit candles to around the black candle in the iron cauldron. And we did our cone of power to benefit each of us and those we know in need. I…

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Cerberus at the Gates of Hell, and Magic Curse Tablet from Jerusalem

Here are two interesting posts I saw today on the Archeology News Network.

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The heads of Cerberus, detail from a Roman statue in the Heraklion Archeology Museum [Credit: Howard Standbury/flickr]

The first is Archeologists find statue of Cerberus in Turkey at a spot alleged to be one of the original Gates of Hell in Greek legend. The cave was revealed by the number of dead birds outside its entrance, killed by the noxious fumes that come therefrom.

The second post is Ancient Magic Curse Tablet Found in Jerusalem which shows it wasn’t just YHVH who ruled back then as the tablet evokes six gods from four religions.

Emjoy!

Mysteria Misc. Maxima: October 25th, 2013 (Halloween Edition!)

As usual i am reblogging Sarah Veale’s Friday post at Invocatio with all its excellent Halloween themed links. I especially liked “Halloween-themed Academic Articles at Oxford Journals”, many of which are in downloadable PDF form for later reading, and most especially the one on “Imperial Secrets: Vampires and Nationhood in Puerto Rico” which explains the myth of the chupacabra in light of US political policies there over the decades. Enjoy!

“Black Cemetery Rain” post from The Cemetery Traveler blog

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Local cemetery – photo copyright 2013 GLHoke

For those of you who might have Taphophilia (not to be confused with necrophilia) instead of Taphophobia, I once again recommend The Cemetery Traveler blog by Ed Snyder who lives in the eastern part of Pennsylvania and is a great photographer and historian with many an interesting tale to tell. To quote from his blog – “Ed Snyder began this blog in order to share his decade-long experience with all things cemeterial. As a photographer specializing in images of cemetery statuary, I’ve run into some interesting people, had some unexplainable experiences, and had a lot of fun.”

I was especially touched by this post called Black Cemetery Rain where he drives in the pouring rain though a small graveyard in NE PA, trying to take pictures through his car window, which actually come out rather well and are very atmospheric. He also waxes philosophical on death as it has touched his life of late, something he rarely does. If you are a Taphophile i suggest a thorough exploration of other posts and great pictures.

Grando Mortem…..

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Harrisburg cemetery Olmstead mausoleum steps – photo copyright 2013 GLHoke

Featuring the “Sexy Witch” blog of fun images from the pre-1800s to Today

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Here’s a fun blog called Sexy Witch which features images of witches from pre-1800 up through the decades including old postcards, paintings, snapshots from old films, and more modern erotic but tasteful images. Because of the latter i will have to list this as NSFW and 18+ only. But as i said it is all in good taste and no one should be offended except some stereotypes of witches are illustrated. All i can say to that is Get a Life. Yea I’m a serious witch, but sometimes witches like to celebrate Halloween as much as Samhain! All images here are from this blog, which unfortunately stopped publishing in December of 2011. Its not just a picture blog but also gives good information on the image of the witch throughout time.

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And here’s a clip of Kim Novak and her cat familiar Pyewacket putting a love spell on Jimmy Stewart from “Bell, Book and Candle” Enjoy!