Category Archives: Spells

A Spell for Beauty

This is a reworking of an old spell for beauty.

On the day of Venus when the moon is waxing, arise early and collect seven fragrant roses as soon as the morning dew dries. Take these roses to your kitchen and steep them several hours in a quantity of whole milk. As evening falls, mix the white of one egg, beaten, with a tablespoon of this fragrant milk and a tablespoon of fine honey. Apply this potion to your face and recite this charm:

luc lac
ovum mel
rosas bellus

Leave the mask to dry for about 20 minutes and wash off with cool water.

The Nightmare Charm

To protect the dreamer from being hag-ridden or plagued by nightmares, take a length of horsehair and braid it into a cord. While braiding, chant the following charm over it:

Tha mon o´micht, he rade o´nicht
Wi´neither swerd ne ferd ne licht
He socht tha Mare, he fond tha Mare,
He bond tha Mare wi´her ain hare,
Ond gared her swar by midder-micht
She wolde nae mair rid o´nicht
Whar aince he rade, thot mon o´micht.

This binding charm dates from the 14th century, and a version of it is quoted in King Lear. It should be chanted a total of nine times. In modern English it translates to:

The man of might, he rode all night
With neither sword, nor army, nor light.
He sought the Mare, he found the Mare,
He bound the Mare with her own hair,
He made her swear by mothers might
That she would no more ride at night
Where once he rode that man of might.

Once you have the horsehair cord, thread it through a hag-stone and knot it, forming a loop. Hag-stones, also called holy stones or Odin stones, are stones which have a hole naturally worn through them and can be found at the beach or streams and rivers. They’re used in folk magic for a number of uses, but one of which was to protect dreamers and horses.

You may also put a religious medal of Saint George, who is often named specifically as the man of might in other versions of the charm (see Scot’s Discoverie of Witchcraft), on the horsehair cord as well. Hang the amulet either from the bed or over it and the work is done.

Johann_Heinrich_Füssli_053The Nightmare. Johann Heinrich Füssli, 1790−1791

A spell for healing on Holy Saturday

Herba Sacra
Extended from the mighty hand of Jove
I call on your power
to expel and make hale

Fruit of the Sun
Plucked from the fiery heart of Primum Regum
I call on your power
to expel and make hale

Thymus vulgaris
Exhaled from the sweet breath of Venus
I call on your power
to expel and make hale

Mel from the singing sisters
Distilled from the mountain of youth
I call on your power
to bind and preserve

As the Christos arises from the grave on the morn,
Thou shalt arise, refreshed, renewed, and made hale.
So be it.

A Spell from The Craft

The Craft
Reading Adventures in Witchery recently has made us somewhat nostalgic for the 1990’s. So, reveling in the halloween season and our penchant for horror, we made some cinnamon caramel popcorn, opened a couple of pumpkin ales, and sat down to re-watch “The Craft”. Just on a lark we paused one particular scene in the montage where the ladies are discussing a spell in a book (right after the levitation scene) and tried to decipher the text to see what book they used in the film. We found that we could read almost the whole thing, but that the spell isn’t on the internet yet (that we could find)! This is somewhat shocking, as we assumed someone would have copied it down to a geocities site with a purple background and spinning pentacles of glitter by 1997. So here it is, archived for posterity, a spell under the heading “initiation” from 1996’s teen witch horror film “The Craft”.

~ Initiation ~

1 Tbsp Pipsissewa
2 Tbsp rose powder
1 Tbsp violet powder
1/2 Tbsp Vanillan powder
1/4 teaspoon salt peter

Crush Pipsissewa fine as possible, add the rest of the formula, and mix thoroughly.

After sundown, during an hour of Venus, light a little of the incense mix. Light a Seven Power candle. Read Psalm 41 aloud. Sit in quiet meditation for five minutes. Then, tell the Angels your hearts desire, or, tell them what troubles you. It is said that if you repeat this spell every seven days, the Angels will come to your aid. You must permit the Seven Powers candle to burn out, do not extinguish yourself.

Chimaphila maculata

Pipsissewa (Chimaphila umbellata or Chimaphila maculata) is a beautiful woodland herb found throughout North America which is underutilized in magical practice. One of the two plants referred to as wintergreen, pipsissewa has a sweet, fresh flavor and scent. Cunningham mentions it being useful for summoning benevolent spirits. (Photo by Fritz Flohr Reynolds.)

A Spell to Return a Lover

We get a lot of requests for love magic here at the apothecary; people need help finding a new lover or reconciling with one from the past. Here is an old spell from the turn of the twentieth century using dragon’s blood to fetch the love partner from a distance when you are separated.

“To fetch a lover from a distance, get a pennyworth of ” dragon’s blood ” from the chemist. Cut a piece of red flannel into the shape of a heart, and stick three pins in it for Cupid’s darts. The three points of the pins must point to the centre. Sprinkle the dragon’s blood on the flannel. At midnight, burn it on a gleedy fire [a fire of hot, glowing embers] just as the clock strikes twelve, and, as it is burning, repeat these words :

‘Tis not this blood I wish to burn,
But ‘s heart I wish to turn.
May he neither rest nor sleep
Till he returns to me to me to speak.

“It should be done on a Friday night ; on the first Friday in the month it is supposed to work the best. Friday is always the most witching night, and you must be alone. K. H., of Burton-on- Trent, who is now about twenty-seven, tried this, and fetched her present husband by train from a distance. They had had a quarrel, ” Why, whatever has brought you ? ” she said, when he arrived. ” I couldn’t rest,” he said, ” I felt as if I must come. I thought something must be wrong with you. Something told me I must come.” K. H. tried to persuade another girl to try it only last summer. (A. O., 1902. )”

This spell, published in Folk-lore : A Quarterly Review, Volume 20 in 1909, continues an old tradition of love spells that border on cursing. Christopher Farone’s “Ancient Greek Love Magic” contains many fascinating examples of this type of spell from the ancient world. The directive to neither rest nor sleep means the target of the spell will not be able to get you out of their mind, going over the argument you may have had, longing to clear the air and make things right.

The spell is performed on a Friday night, the day of Venus, mistress of the matters of the heart. I suspect the mention of the first friday of the month does not refer to the calendar month, but instead the lunar month, in which case the moon is waxing. As the moon swells and grows, so will your lover’s thoughts of you, until the pull of your spell, like the moon on the tides of the ocean, cannot be resisted.

We sell two different kinds of dragon’s blood at the apothecary. One is the glassy dark red resin from the fruit of a palm (mostly growing in Indonesia) which smells sharp, piney, and slightly acrid, much like frankincense. The other is the dried sap of a tropical tree and looks like a dull, dark red myrrh. When burned, its scent is woody and spicy and kind of metallic. We have no idea which resin you would have gotten from a chemist in Britain in 1909, but for the purposes of this spell, we’d recommend using the former Indonesian Dragon’s Blood.