Witchology, the history of Wicca & Witchcraft
Study and learn the history of Witchcraft,
What is Witchcraft?
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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June: Carna to Ogun
June is named after Juno, the Roman 'Great Mother Goddess'.
Pagan Festivals and Holy Days in June
June is named in honour of Juno, the wife of Jupiter, known to the Greeks as Hera. This first half of June, to the Ides, is a period of religious purification, and as such is an inauspicious time for marriage.
The lunar month corresponding to June was known as Ærra Liğa, 'first' or 'preceding' Liğa and July was Æfterra Liğa, 'following Liğa'. Bede writes that "Litha means 'gentle' or 'navigable', because in both these months [June and July] the calm breezes are gentle and they were wont to sail upon the smooth sea." Since the adjective liğe does appear in other Anglo-Saxon contexts meaning 'calm' or 'gentle', along with the verb liğan meaning 'to sail', and a host of other 'liğ-' words with nautical connotations, Bede's explanation seems wholly plausible.
Some modern pagan authors have interpreted Liğa as the Anglo-Saxon name for the summer solstice due to its symmetry with Yule within the old calendar. Ærra Liğa, June, and Æfterra Liğa, July, fall before and after the summer solstice just as Ærra Geola, December, and Æfterra Geola, January, fall before and after the winter solstice. But since there is no record of any Anglo-Saxon words related to liğa that have a meaning encompassing the concept of 'the sun', this idea remains within the realm of speculation. Of course, one could also speculate that liğa refers to the summer solstice because the sun can metaphorically be seen to sail, liğan, across the sky. But since the solstice is the point where the sun appears to stop moving (solstice literally means 'sun-stop' in Latin), sailing would seem an odd choice of metaphor for this particular celestial event.
German Traditional Month Names
In Old High German (9-15th century) June was known as Brachmanoth, meaning 'Blooming month'. In (Early) Modern German (c. 15-19th century) many different variants are found, including dialect and non-standard Latin forms: Brachmonat, Brachmond, Brauchmonat, Brachet, Braemaent, Braimaint, Broimaent, broumaent, Gieskerec, gisserèche, Gunck (Lothringen), Midsomermonat, Prachmanet, Somertras, somertraz (in France), Wedemaent, Weidemaent, Rosenmond.
Witchcraft Out of the Shadows by Leo Ruickbie
If you knew that there was one book that would change the history of witchcraft would you want to read it? Contains new analyses, fresh insights and previously unpublished material from the author's PhD research.
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