Three Recommended Spellbooks for Traditional Witches

Three Recommended Spellbooks for Traditional Witches December 8, 2018

Not too long ago, someone asked me what spellbooks I’d recommend, particularly as a practitioner of Traditional Witchcraft. This got me thinking about the various books of spells and rituals that I’ve gone through in my years of practice. Today, there are millions of options to choose from, and that’s before considering all of the resources available online. So, I combed through my shelves and my mind, trying to decide on which books to recommend, and eventually I came up with three. These spellbooks are bit of the beaten path, and you’ll notice that they contain a lot of Christian imagery. But nonetheless, they are absolute treasure troves of timeless folk-magic that can be updates to fit your own spiritual preferences. For example, I have had no issue substituting the names of my spirits for those given in the recorded incantations and prayers. Even if you don’t wish to use the material in these books, they still provide a fascinating look into past magical practices and beliefs.

….

Carmina Gadelica 

The Carmina Gadelica is collection of prayers, spells, song, and poems from the Scottish Highlands, collected by Alexander Carmichael during the 19th century. What I love about this book, is that it contains references to Christianity as well as elements of animistic folk-beliefs.

One prayer, for wishing another well, goes:

Wisdom of serpent be thine,

Wisdom of raven be thine,

Wisdom of valiant eagle.

Voice of swan be thine,

Voice of honey be thine,

Voice of the Son of the stars.

Bounty of sea be thine,

Bounty of land be thine,

Bounty of the Father of heaven.

Meanwhile, the book also contains a very Pagan invocation to the moon:

Hail to thee, thou new moon,

Beauteous guidant of the sky;

Hail to thee, thou new moon,

Beauteous fair one of grace.

Hail to thee, thou new moon,

Beauteous guidant of the stars;

Hail to tee, thou new moon,

Beauteous loved one of my heart.

Hail to thee, thou new moon,

Beauteous guidant of the clouds;

Hail to thee, thou new moon,

Beauteous dear one of the heavens!

Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash

Der Lange Verborgene Freund (The Long Lost Friend)

First published in 1820, The Long Lost Friend is a collection of folk magic collected by John George Hohman. The book quickly became a much beloved manual for the magical practices of the Pennsylvania-Dutch people. Hohman’s collection includes charms for healing and protecting both humans and animals. The book itself seems to have been meant as a protective charm in itself, as it closes with the following statement:

Whoever carries this book with him, is safe from all his enemies, visible or invisible; and whoever has this book with him cannot die without the holy corpse of Jesus Christ, nor drowned in any water, nor burn up in any fire, nor can any unjust sentence be passed upon him. So help me. 

One of my favorite spells in the book is titled “A Charm to Gain Advantage of a Man of Superior Strength,” and goes as follows:

I (name) breathe upon thee. Three drops of blood I take from thee: the first out of thy heart, the other out of thy liver, and the third out of thy vital powers; and in this I deprive thee of thy strength and manliness. 

Another of my favorites, meant for stopping and injury from bleeding goes:

I walk through a green forest;

There I will find three wells, cool and cold;

The first is called courage,

The second is called good,

And the third is called stop the blood.

Photo by Brandi Redd on Unsplash

The Book of Psalms

The third spellbook, so to speak, that I recommend is The Book of Psalms. Some Witches may be surprised by this recommendation. Yes, the Psalms come from the Old Testament and are Christian in nature. But it takes only a glance through some of the verses to realize their magical potential as spells, particularly for justice, protection, and hexing. Again, if you wish to do so, try substituting the names of Christian spirits for those of your own. I have had great success using the following. Psalm 140, in particular, came in handy when I was dealing with a stalker last year.

Deliver me, O Lord, from the evil man: preserve me from the violent man; Which imagine mischiefs in their heart; continually are they gathered together for war. They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders’ poison is under their lips. Selah. Keep me, O Lord, from the hands of the wicked; preserve me from the violent man; who have purposed to overthrow my goings. The proud have hid a snare for me, and cords; they have spread a net by the wayside; they have set gins for me. Selah. I said unto the Lord, Thou art my God: hear the voice of my supplications, O LordGod the Lord, the strength of my salvation, thou hast covered my head in the day of battle. Grant not, O Lord, the desires of the wicked: further not his wicked device; lest they exalt themselves. Selah. As for the head of those that compass me about, let the mischief of their own lips cover them. Let burning coals fall upon them: let them be cast into the fire; into deep pits, that they rise not up again. Let not an evil speaker be established in the earth: evil shall hunt the violent man to overthrow him. I know that the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and the right of the poor. Surely the righteous shall give thanks unto thy name: the upright shall dwell in thy presence.

….

There you have it, three spellbooks which I highly recommend to practitioners of Traditional Witchcraft (or really any Witch in general). Let m know in the comments if you’ve ever used these three books, or what your own favorite spellbooks are!

"I actually like this post. Read it when you first posted, also read again at ..."

Three Recommended Spellbooks for Traditional Witches
"Excellent article and I will definitely be searching for these books, but one picky point ..."

Three Recommended Spellbooks for Traditional Witches
"I have a few insinuate that I didn't read the article when I did, simply ..."

Why Men Cannot be Witches
"I thoroughly enjoyed this piece. Thanks for writing it."

American Witches: Bishop, Hobbs, and the ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Pagan
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment