Atlantis Online
September 20, 2019, 11:34:46 pm
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: THE SEARCH FOR ATLANTIS IN CUBA
A Report by Andrew Collins
http://www.andrewcollins.com/page/articles/atlantiscuba.htm
 
  Home Help Arcade Gallery Links Staff List Calendar Login Register  

Uncanny Archaeology of Halloween

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 [6] 7 8 9 10 11 12 ... 14   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Uncanny Archaeology of Halloween  (Read 1403 times)
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #75 on: October 30, 2009, 11:55:13 pm »

http://www.archaeology.org/0811/etc/witches.html
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #76 on: October 30, 2009, 11:55:40 pm »



Archaeologist Jacqui Wood holds a fragment of a cauldron unearthed from a buried spring-fed pool near her home. This and other artifacts she has found point to a long history of ritual and witchcraft. (Manuel Cohen)
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #77 on: October 30, 2009, 11:56:38 pm »



While digging a hole for another project, Wood discovered a late Mesolithic clay platform in her field. She found that small pits had been dug into the platform at a later date, and contained bizarre collections of items including swan skins, pebbles, and bird claws. (Manuel Cohen)
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #78 on: October 30, 2009, 11:57:21 pm »



Many of the ritual pits Wood and her colleagues unearthed, which date from the 17th century to just decades ago, contained eggs. The shells have dissolved, but the membranes remain, as do feathers of chicks that were close to hatching. (Manuel Cohen)
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #79 on: October 30, 2009, 11:58:16 pm »

Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #80 on: October 30, 2009, 11:58:57 pm »



Two spring-fed pools on Wood's land were places of ritual offering. Visitors seeking good fortune deposited everything from scraps of cloth, to straightpins, hair, heather branches, and nail clippings. (Manuel Cohen)
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #81 on: October 30, 2009, 11:59:34 pm »

Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #82 on: October 31, 2009, 12:01:44 am »

An American Witch Bottle
"Uncanny Archaeology"
by Marshall J. Becker

Evidence for the practice of "white witchcraft" in colonial Pennsylvania

Witchcraft conjures instant pictures of sinister beings, malevolent magic, and eerie happenings. Almost every American school child has heard of the Salem witch trials, and belief in sorcery still prospers in the many cosmopolitan crossroads of contemporary America. But this long tradition of magic and ritual rarely has been recorded. Even more scarce are artifacts that provide tangible evidence for the existence of witchcraft practices.

A curious bottle unearthed during recent excavations in Governor Printz State Park in Essington, Pennsylvania, provides a glimpse of early American witchcraft--unique evidence of a special "white witchcraft" hitherto known only from England. This squat piece of glasswork with a bright gold patina over its dark olive color had been buried upside down in a small hole. Two objects were deposited under the shoulder of the bottle: a piece of a long thin bone from some medium-sized bird, possibly a partridge, and a redware rim sherd from a small black-glazed bowl. The bottle contained six round-headed pins and had been stoppered tightly with a whittled wooden plug.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #83 on: October 31, 2009, 12:02:56 am »

What makes this bottle and its contents curious are their uniqueness; no other bottle with similar contents has ever been found in the United States. On study, it proved to be a type of "witch bottle" that is familiar from English contexts dating to the 17th century. Although the American example probably dates to the 18th century--the bottle was manufactured around 1740 and may have been buried about 1748--the parallels are clear enough to establish its functions as an anti-witch charm. Such white magic was practiced widely in colonial America, enough so, that Increase Mather (1639-1732), the well-known minister and author, inveighed against it as early as 1684. His son, Cotton Mather (1663-1728), advised in favor of its use in particular situations. Since Cotton Mather was the most celebrated of all American Puritans, his publications must have had widespread impact and reflected the attitudes of the day.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #84 on: October 31, 2009, 12:03:18 am »

Witchcraft was regarded as a sufficiently serious problem in the early days of the colonies that various pieces of legislation were enacted against it. In May of 1718, Pennsylvania's legislators passed "An Act for the Advancement of Justice," which incorporated verbatim "An Act Against Conjuration, Witchcraft, and Dealing with Evil and Wicked Spirits" promulgated in England in 1685, the first year of James II's reign. This prudent legislation did not stem the tide, however, for as we learn from the work of Stevenson W. Fletcher, "Following an especially sever outbreak of the devilish machinations of witches in Chester County, in 1719, a commission of justices of the county court was empowered to enquire into 'all witchcrafts, enchantments, sorceries and magic arts.'" Even Governor William Penn presided over the trial of a witch at a meeting of the Provincial Assembly in 1684. With the coming of the urban-industrial revolution and the consequent spread of scientific methods, public concern with witchcraft began to abate. Although it lingered on in byways and in certain rural areas as it still does today, witchcraft had significantly diminished by 1800. There is very little artifactual or written evidence of it after 1720.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #85 on: October 31, 2009, 12:03:41 am »

The Essington witch bottle from the Governor Printz Park excavations conducted in 1976 on Tinicum Island in the Delaware River affords an interesting example of the perpetuation of witchcraft into the mid-18th century. This is the only such bottle which comes from securely established archaeological context. The bottle itself, its contents, inverted position, and placement next to the house where it was found all point to the magical powers such bottles were thought to possess. In general, witch bottles seem to have served two functions: they could serve as prophylactic amulets during the building of a house, or they could serve as countermeasures against special acts of witchcraft. In the former case, bottles generally were buried beneath thresholds or hearthstones or within the confines of structures. The 19th-century scholar Ludwig Hanselmann believed that witch bottles were related to the early pagan custom of foundation sacrifices. When used as a device against witchcraft practices, they were buried either outside or thrown into a stream.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #86 on: October 31, 2009, 12:04:03 am »

The witch bottle from Tinicum Island appears to be this second sort. It comes from a context definitely outside the original foundation of the house associated with it. This structure is believed to be the "Printzhof"--originally the residence of the Swedish governor Johan Printz, who, between 1643 and 1653, headed the first colonial government of what is now Pennsylvania. Printz had been sent to the New World to do business with the Lenape and Susquehanock and to lead Swedish traders on the South (now Delaware) River in wresting the trade with Native Americans from the Dutch. He settled on Tinicum Island, 24 kilometers downstream from modern central Philadelphia, and built a residence in what is now Governor Printz State Park. While excavating the remains of this structure, we came upon the witch bottle which dates from a considerably later phase of the building's occupation. The land on which Printzhof stood passed from the Printz family into the hands of others and ultimately into the possession of Quaker settlers by the name of Taylor; the Taylors held the land until 1800 when this parcel was divided into three smaller units. In 1748, one of the Taylors, then resident of the house, may have planted the witch bottle during rebuilding of the old foundation.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #87 on: October 31, 2009, 12:04:23 am »

Exactly why the bottle was buried remains open to conjecture, but the ethnohistorical parallels make the guesswork rather minimal. The Essington bottle was quite probably filled with urine when buried, and it is possible that the urine and six pins were boiled together before they were placed in the bottle. Such ingredients were antidotes to pain thought to have been induced by witchcraft. Urinary problems were common both in England and America during the 17th and 18th centuries, and it is reasonable to suppose their symptoms often were attributed to the work of local witches. The victims of bladder stones or other urinary ailments would have used a witch bottle to transfer the pains of the illness from themselves back to the witch. The pins or nails often were used to symbolize the victim's pain; the boiling of the ingredients served to redirect the sufferer's symptoms back to the witch. In some cases, this might in turn reveal the identity of the witch.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #88 on: October 31, 2009, 12:04:45 am »

Such sympathetic magic betrays a primitive understanding of the laws of causality as well as bodily functions. Presumably, the victim's urine had become contaminated by "blood" from the witch, and the assembly of a witch bottle could convey the contaminant back into the witch's own system. In this case, the victims were regarding their urine as a waste product no longer integral to his or her body--the reverse of the practice in many credulous cultures, where urine, feces, nail parings, and hair clippings were regarded as vital parts of the body which had to be disposed of carefully lest malevolent people use them to deprive the owner of strength or health.
Report Spam   Logged
Vlad the Impaler
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1791



« Reply #89 on: October 31, 2009, 12:05:15 am »

The Essington bottle contained six intact pins, probably because six is a number traditionally effective against witches; witness the six-pointed "hex" signs still in use today in rural parts of Pennsylvania. The potsherd has no parallels with other known English witch bottles, but the associated bird bones are familiar, although not from specifically English examples. In parts of Europe, bird bones are often found in association with all types of vessels buried with magical items. Animal bones, however, are a long-standing ingredient in magical charms, and the presence of one beneath this bottle is not particularly surprising. The inverted position of the bottle also has many English parallels and doubtless symbolizes the reversing or "overturning" of the witch's intentions.
Report Spam   Logged
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 [6] 7 8 9 10 11 12 ... 14   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy