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November 20 , 2009

Night of the Witches

Folklore, Traditions & Recipes for Celebrating Walpurgis Night


"Spring has come to the northern forest. The evening wind blows cold as the breath of the frost giants. Just overhead, there is a sound like the rushing of crows' wings. Can it be a coven of witches has flown over these woods?

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"On any other night, you would probably swear that there was no such thing as a witch—at least, not the kind that streaks through the sky on a broomstick with guttering taper and billowing cloak. But this is no ordinary night; it is the thirtieth of April, the eve of May. Tonight is Walpurgis Night."

The roots of Walpurgis Night reach deep into the Pagan past, and modern Europeans celebrate it with as much abandon as their ancestors. Learn about the sacred rites of spring and the "lost" holiday has changed from a lusty fertility festival to a children’s night of fun and treats. Learn about brooms and how to make one, and meet a collection of old-time witches, from Ash Wives to Wolf Crones. This charming, impeccably researched book features a wealth of folklore and herb lore, plus original and traditional recipes, crafts, and activities.

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