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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: The Discoverie of Witchcraft


The Discoverie of Witchcraft: First published in 1584 and written by Reginald Scot, a Justice of the Peace in England, this book was an attack on the “Witch craze” in Europe. He contended that the women who claimed to have great powers were ill or deluded. The effects attributed to so-called Witches were natural—the Will of God—not caused by magic.

This classic book was also one of the first books attempting to “debunk” a wide variety of mystical topics, including charms, astrology, alchemy, demonology, spells, divination, magic, etc. It was inspired because Scot saw so many women being abused and persecuted under the excuse of trying them for being Witches.

One of the things many people of the day couldn’t understand was the seeming miracles produced by “jugglers” and others. In a small section of the book, Scot revealed how some of these early conjuring effects were performed, making this one of the earliest books on “legerdemain” ever published. Some modern conjurors contend that this was the actual purpose of the book, but that is highly debatable.Donald Michael Kraig

Also See: Discoverie of Witchcraft


Transits and Progressions
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Primarily, Geomancy is divination by means of randomly made dots in sand. Also by studying cracks made in dried mud, and by the noises and movements of the earth in areas prone to earth changes. Israel Regardie wrote in his Practical Guide to ...
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Review of the Golden Dawn Magical Tarot
Summary: A brilliant deck that is ideal for practitioners of ceremonial magick and for those following the system of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Will also interest those researching the link between earlier traditional Tarot decks and the ...
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Group vs. Solitary Ritual and the Source of Magickal Power
Many if not most rituals in books were written for group performance, yet, most "seekers" today do not belong to a group and modern Americans more often prefer to be Solitaries. Before offering suggestions on how to convert a group ritual to the ...
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Review of the Dark Grimoire Tarot
Summary: As dark and mysterious as the mythic world created by H. P. Lovecraft, The Dark Grimoire Tarot is strongly recommended for those mature enough and brave enough to examine their darker sides, and by coming to know and control those aspects ...
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Review of the Shapeshifter Tarot
Summary: A stunning and transformative artistic deck that is good as an additional deck with a focus on major life changes and magickal work including meditation, shapeshifting, and spellwork. However there are some flaws and the differences between ...
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Ayahuasca – the Vine of Souls, the Medicine of Love
Shamanic healing often employs plants to good effect, though it is rarely about herbalism, per se. Indeed, most shamans are explicit that the pharmacological properties of the plants they employ are of far less importance than the spirit which is ...
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Review of the Wicca Oracle Cards
Summary: The Wicca Oracle Cards invite the user's intuition and imagination into each quiet image. Each card is a doorway leading to worlds waiting to be explored. By going through these charming and deceptively simple portals, seekers can find ...
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Celtic Magic
The Druids and filídh were known for their divination and mysticism. These took manyforms, such as the learning and verse forms for composing blessings and curses,and the memorization of old hymns, chants and incantations. The basic song wascalled a ...
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The Near Death Experience
Psychical researchers, psychologists and physicians who have investigated the near-death experience have learned that it consists of approximately 10 consistent elements. All persons who have had the experience report some, most or all of these ...
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The Path of the Shaman Then and Now
I recently heard a wonderfully simple definition of the word shaman. It was: "A shaman is one who helps people in their dealings with the other worlds." These other worlds are the realms above, beyond, and deep within the experiences of our lives. ...
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A few years ago, my youngest son was arguing with his friend about the age of Honey, our wild golden retriever. His friend insisted that Honey was five, because the dog had been alive that many years. Said Gabe, "Sometimes Honey is really one, like when he chews our shoes; sometimes he's 89, like when he pretends he's too old to listen when you... read this article
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