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Hereditary Witchcraft
Hereditary Witchcraft
Secrets of the Old Religion

By: Raven Grimassi
Imprint: Llewellyn
Specs: Trade Paperback | 9781567182569
English  |  288 pages | 8 x 9 x 1 IN
7 x 9 , 288 pp. , 31 illus. appendices , glossary , bibliog. , index
Pub Date: September 1999
Price: $17.95 US,  $20.95 CAN
$14.36 US,  $16.76 CAN On Sale!
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One of the questions many Wiccans have runs to the very core and nature of Witchcraft. How much of Wicca is really ancient and how much has been added recently? Now, respected author Raven Grimassi answers that question by documenting the ancient sources of Wiccan beliefs and methods in Hereditary Witchcraft - Secrets of the Old Religion.
In this beautifully designed book, you'll discover many of the ancient roots of modern Witchcraft. You'll discover their sources in ancient Italy, and how they have evolved through the ages. You'll see what was adapted from other traditions in the Middle Ages, and what has been added in recent times.
Why do Witches believe in a Goddess and a God? Grimassi traces the importance of this belief to the Second Lectisternium of 217 B.C.E where Romans grouped deity couples.
Why is the pentagram associated with Wicca? You'll discover that Witches' use of the pentagram as a symbol dates back to at least 525 B.C.E in Crotona, Italy. During the time of Gerald Gardner (arguably the founder of modern Wicca), the New Forest, England, coven called itself the "Crotona Fellowship."
Where did the idea of four elements come from? Although it was known earlier, it was first codified and taught as a single system by Empedocles (a student of the teachings of Pythagoras) around the year 475 B.C.E. in Sicily.
Is the tradition of using a Priest, Priestess and Maiden to guide group rituals a new invention? Hardly! Grimassi traces it back to the 1st century B.C.E where images of a priestess assisted by a priest and a female attendant are seen on stucco reliefs in Pompeii.
Yes, Hereditary Witchcraft proves that many of the beliefs and techniques of modern Wicca are indeed ancient. If you practice any form of Paganism, this book is a must for you to see the historical basis for your beliefs.
Grimassi, tapping his own hereditary tradition, also shares a wide variety of rituals that anyone can do. These rituals are solitary, meaning you don't need to be part of a coven to do them. They include how to make and banish a circle, a full moon ritual, and rituals for traditional holidays such as Shadow Fest, Lupercus, and the equinoxes.
You'll also learn about the secret Tuscan Runes and how they can be used for divination and magick; the Sea Magick Runes; Start Magick Runes; and Moon Spirit Symbols.
Besides being an important defense of the Craft, this book is filled with fascinating information and Witch lore. You'll even learn about the famous Witches of northern Europe, from Robert Cochrane to Gerald Gardner, from Sybil Leek to Austin Spare.
This book is a treasure trove of information, folklore, tradition and practical techniques. Whether you are a beginning Witch or a long-time practitioner, this is an important book you must have.



Before I met Merlin Stone I was blind. It took her a little time; she gave me a strong dose of love, and from then on I could see—see the world as a feminist, that is. Merlin converted me, so if you haven't yet read her work, be prepared to bring the Goddess into your own life as well. I'm Lenny Schneir. Shortly after meeting Merlin in 1976,... read this article
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