Witchology, the history of Wicca & Witchcraft

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That's what this website is here to find out. Witchology.com is the website of WICA - the Witchcraft Information Centre and Archive - founded in 1999 as a research and education provider specialising in the areas of Witchcraft, Wicca, Paganism, Magic (Magick) and the Occult. We have been online continuously since 2000.

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The Supernatural"The Supernatural is the perfect introduction to the world of all things eerie, inexplicable and otherworldly." - Jason Karl, Most Haunted

Witchcraft out of the Shadows: A Complete History"Witchcraft out of the Shadows: A Complete History is an engaging book which deserves to be the benchmark for all future analyses of the Craft." More

Faustus: The Life and Times of a Renaissance Magician"Dr Ruickbie has re-evaluated the Faust tradition from a position of authority. A work of meticulous scholarship that can be read as a gripping page-turner." More


Open Source WiccaHistories of the Barbarians: Vandals, Goths and FranksBeowulf in Anglo-Saxon and English Translation


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The Development of Wicca: Valiente, Cochrane, Sanders, Buckland

History of Witchcraft & Wicca

Out of the seething cauldron of its inventor's fertile imagination, shameless plagiarism, energy and ambition came the most radical and fastest growing religion of the Twentieth and now Twenty-First Century. How did this happen? Who were the people who shaped this development?.

The Growth and Development of Wicca

Extract from Leo Ruickbie's Witchcraft Out of the Shadows

text / image

6. Out of the Cauldron, Into the Fire: The Development of the Wiccan Religion After Gardner


Out of the seething cauldron of Gardner’s fertile imagination, shameless plagiarism, energy and ambition came the most radical and fastest growing religion of the Twentieth and now Twenty-First Century. Against patriarchal monotheism, Gardner posed a ditheism of sexual equality, of God and Goddess on an equal footing. Against a Church of clergy and laity, Gardner posed a circle of initiates. Against conventional mores they eschewed ‘Sunday best’ and priestly robes to worship their gods unclothed. They took control of their lives through magic and attuned themselves to the natural world through ritual. The fire of Gardner’s inspiration rapidly spread through his books, newspaper articles and by word of mouth to touch an increasingly wide group of people. However, that fire also burnt Gardner.


Having seen how the framework for a new vision of Witchcraft was established in the Nineteenth Century and how this was used by Gerald Gardner to invent a magico-religion upon Masonic lines, we shall next examine how this new Witchcraft was taken up and developed by others, and how it spread out from its base in England to reach the United States of America and a new set of emergent, radical ideas.


Up until the 1950’s only two other names were associated with Gardner and Witchcraft: Old Dorothy Clutterbuck, his supposed initiator into the Craft; and Dafo who acted as ‘Maiden’ and succeeded Clutterbuck in the office of High Priestess. Whilst Old Dorothy Clutterbuck, otherwise known to the community as Mrs Fordham, was a resident of the New Forest area, the record she has left of her life, in her own dairies and in public records, is not only silent on the subject of


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