History of Wicca
Wicca is a pagan religion, often called the “Old Religion” only found in English speaking countries. Nobody really knows when the Wiccan religion really began, although we do know that it was made a known religion by Gerald Gardner, a British civil servant. In 1939 he was invited into, and joined a Wiccan coven. He took the regular security vows of the time (as was normal). 10 years later in 1949, he persuaded the Wiccan people to let him write a book on Wicca in the form of a novel, “High Magic's Aid”. In the book, Gardner carefully reveled some of the Old Religions beliefs. According to him, Wicca first began in prehistory as rituals mainly having to do with healing.
The Witch Burnings
The witch hunt mainly took place between around 1480 and 1750, although the last execution was of Anna Göldi, who was hung in 1782, in Glarus, Switzerland.
Debates against the Wicca
There were many opinions on witches and whether they were good or bad. Some sources say they were associated with the devil, others say that they weren’t, some say they were only girls, and others say they were both genders. Either way, there are many opinions about witches.
One of the reasons that people persecuted “witches” was because they didn’t really understand them. “Witches” were usually women, especially those who were poor or unprotected, or sometimes widows, single women, or “wise” women, who didn’t have anyone to stand up for them. In most cases, if something bad and unexplainable happened people blamed it on the witches.
There were many superstitions about witches too. One of them being that witches could fly on broomsticks. This was most likely because broomsticks were commonly used by women around the house. Witches were also said to live alone, with no man to defend them against their accusations of witchcraft, and the pets that they kept were said to be evil spirits in animal forms. Wise women who knew about herbs, and brewed them were also considered witches for “brewing magic potions over a cauldron”.
Another reason that people disliked witches was because of the Catholic religion. Witches were said to have powers that were associated with the devil, or evil spirits. This went against everything that people from the church said, which got people, especially priests mad.
Because of all this, there were many harsh punishments from witches. At first they would be tortured to confess that they were witches, and then they would be killed. They would be hung, drowned or burned, and sometimes this would happen to prove whether or not they really are witches. If they died they were human, and if they lived they were witches and they’d lived because of their powers.
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