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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: The Discoverie of Witchcraft

DEFINITIONS

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

ARTICLES

The History of the Golden Dawn
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Principles of Ceremonial
Magical ceremonial can be built up and elaborated to forms of great subtlety and complexity, but the initial principles which cause its creation are simple in the extreme. In the first place, ceremonial is a different thing from meditation, and it ...
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Astrological Houses
Your astrological chart is divided into twelve sections called houses. They are numbered from the left side counterclockwise around the chart. The chart represents the planets against a background of the signs of the zodiac, and these signs rise in ...
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Celtic Religion
Druidism can be used synonymously with the phrases Celtic religion and Celtic magic. In order to enter into this magico-religious system, a familiarity with mythology is necessary. Celtic mythology is best represented in the Irish Book of Invasions ...
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Signs of the Zodiac
The signs of the zodiac are the most widely known part of the astrological system. As mentioned earlier, almost everyone knows your Sun sign. The daily horoscopes in the newspaper are based on the position of the Sun in the zodiac. The zodiac is ...
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Meditation
Meditation is: An emptying of the mind of all thoughts and "chatter" often by concentration only on the slow inhalation and exhalation of breath and is characterized by slow alpha and theta waves. It induces relaxation and a "clean slate" ...
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Planets
The planets (including the Sun and Moon) are the actors in the astrological drama. They represent ten general categories of energy – ten sub-personalities – that reflect facets of your personality and ways that you function in the world. Each planet ...
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The Work of the Medsen Fey - the Leaf Doctors of Haiti
Loulou Prince is the medsen fey (leaf doctor/herbalist and shaman) for a Haitian community of around 1,500 people who live in the vicinity of Jacmel, a small town close to the border with the Dominican Republic. In his daily practice, he deals with ...
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Norse Gods & Goddesses
Partial List of the Norse Gods, Goddesses & Other Supernatural Beings Their Lore, Powers & Influence The Names of the deities are in the old Norse language while the Rune names are in German. (Note: Many of the correspondences given in ...
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Vodou - An African Shamanic Tradition
At first sight, shamanism and Vodou - what Hollywood has introduced into the popular imagination as "voodoo" - seem to have little in common. The former seems based on peaceful co-existence with nature and the elements, while the latter, in so far ...
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