You might refer to magic as a man standing on a stage pulling rabbits out of a hat. But if you know the history of magic it might change your mind.
Cave men and how magic started
Magic has been practiced for a very long time. In fact it goes back as far as 50,000 B.C. Can you believe it, 52,000 years ago magic was started?
Prehistoric people who buried cave bears probably started "magic". They probably did this as a magic rite (spell). Scientists believe those drawings and carvings are a form of magic. For example, hunters would probably draw animals or hunting scenes before going on hunting trips. They probably believed that the drawings would come to life while they were gone. They believed in its power but it didnít actually work. By drawing the scenes they gave themselves self-confidence. That was their magic.
Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romanís magic
Ancient Egyptians used amulets, magic figures, and rites as their magic. Magic was very important to them because they believed that it would provide them with crop, punishments, and rewards, and keeping the pharaoh happy. Ancient Greeks and Romans tried to tell the future through dreams and crystal balls. They also consulted priests to get information from their gods.
During the Middle Ages, Europeans believed strongly in magic. Almost all Europeans believed in its power. At the same time they also thought it was sinful. At that time alchemist (chemists) searched for two very valuable substances, the philosopher's stone and the elixir of life. The philosopher's stone was believed to change iron, lead, and other metals into gold. The elixir of life was a miraculous substance that could cure diseases and lengthen life.
From the 1500's to the1700's, belief in magic continued spread around the world. Even the highly educated people believed in its power. For example, Sir Isaac Newton studied alchemy. People by this time were tired of witchcraft.
People believed you could tell a personís character in many ways, such as studying a personís hand, facial features, or even the moles on their skin. After about 1600 magic lost our attention because of scientific advances. Scientists revealed that magic was not real, it was our mind playing tricks.
Magic today is way different than hundreds of years ago. Some people still believe in witchcraft or still read their horoscope in the daily newspaper, but we mostly use it as entertainment. It is also with us in superstitions, such as a lucky penny or a rabbitís foot.