About Red Witch

Red Witch is based in Melbourne, Australia.

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I really like Gil Elvgren’s Riding High, and have been using this photo as an avatar since 2006.

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I was once asked whether Red Witch was a “magical name.” This is my answer:

I think you are talking about Craft Names, the impressive-sounding names that Gerald Gardner, Alex Sanders etc used for themselves only among other initiated witches, in their Book of Shadows etc, names that they were given or took on when initiated.

Gardner said that the practice of adopting such a name was to protect witches from their coven-mates when the said coven-mate was “questioned” (i.e. tortured) during the “Burning Times.” The idea was that you couldn’t reveal the real identity of your coven-mates because you’d only know their Craft Name. The amusing part of this story is that it was created by Gardner et al. at a time when everyone knew your true identity, but wanted to know your secret Craft Name!

Anyway, the Craft Names have two other functions: one really magical the other practical. Regarding the latter, some people, for various reasons, still find it necessary to conceal their identity and so they use magic-ish pseudonyms (like Red Witch), which may or may not be the Craft Name they took on when initiated.

As for the real magic of Craft Names, well that applies to names generally and is an ancient belief. Just bring to mind the folk tale of Rumpelstiltskin. As soon as you know the little guy’s name, you have power over him. The long, long history of this belief is a bit too much to cover here.

As for “True Names,” this comes up in A Wizard of Earthsea (1968), but is developed in Christopher Paolini’s Eragon/Eldest/Brisinger series. There is also a little in Lord of the Rings from memory, but I think it was Ursula Le Guin’s Jungian slant on it that you are talking about: by naming/recognising our other/dark self as part of us we become whole.

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46 Responses to “About Red Witch”

  1. Why don’t you get an RSS feed button? Its easy. Then people can follow you o google reader — it might act as vote.
    I found this blog doing research on Maxine Sanders. I may do an interview with her if she lets me as I know someone who knows her. It would be fun to re-print your article about her on my blog — I could do a review of Sexy Witch and maybe get you some new readers — though you aren’t hurting obviously. I just have enjoyed your site immensely and one of my goals is bring US out of the shadows so these censorship things are not a given.
    Keep up the wonderful work Transferring a blog is hard work.
    Bright Blessings,
    Arlene

  2. quite a bit different from the olde tyme medieval versions!

    http://bighugelabs.com/flickr/onblack.php?id=3356277686&size=large

    I totally love this blog! Thank you for being such a scholarly completist. You answer most of my questions in your commentary.

  3. Forscher Says:

    Hi there, congrats on a very interesting site.

    I am presently working on an academic project concerning the witch of Endor, and I noticed that you had some very interesting and unique images here.

    Unfortunately, I am either blind or can’t see an e-mail link, but I would very much like to get your thoughts on a couple of the images you’ve presented. Please contact me if you can.

    Best, LP

  4. The Aztec goddess Tlazolteotl appeared in various aspects which reflected the “Ages of Woman” from young girl through ancient crone. She was known as the “Eater of Filth” an Earth/mother goddess who presided over motherhood and sexuality. It is curious that along with many characteristics which have been associated with an Old World notion of witchery, she also was cedited as riding a broom.

    See: http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/80/97480-004-93C8BF5A.jpg

  5. May you upload (or send me directly) the picture from Gardner published in Arthur Moore’s Manx Scene in 1973.

    http://red-witch.blogspot.com/2007/02/gerald-brosseau-gardner.html

    Thank you for all you have done

  6. I’d love to read more of your writing but am not so good with revisiting websites. Do you announce a new blog entry on Twitter or Facebook or MySpace? Please tell me at: musicalchairz@gmail.com or look up my name on Facebook.

  7. Kain Coorhaagen Says:

    Noble enchantress, I found your site while surfing and just wanted to say I love it! Please keep up your labour of love and keep reminding all of the unintiated of why the witch is a part of our culture and why she remains after most others have faded.

    Blessed Be, Yours through the ether,
    Kain Coorhaagen

  8. Love your blog,would you mind if I put a link to your blog on my own?

  9. Thank you for this blog. It’s wonderful. I’ve been lurking for a long time, but finally decided to speak up. I think I like the section on the 60s and 70s witches the best as that is what I grew up with, however, I enjoy all the periods here. I especially enjoy learning about those sexy witches you post, from the information on witchcraft to the unique art finds. Again, thank you for this site. I hope you’ll enjoy posting it for many years to come.

  10. As Jamie, I’m beginning to think that I may better representing any and all should I lurk more and mutter less. names are powerful things. hedgewitching along without a coven for so long I am humbled and very eager to meet even just in comments/blogs so many people who hold this all in the same high esteem as I. If and when it suits the site etc. I may reenter with something a little more witchy than my own real name but again -no coven. great curiosity towards all things Wicca. I’d be making up a name though, myself. how do you ‘guys ‘feel about; Felix?

  11. redwitch1 Says:

    Felix is a lovely name. In the Harry Potter universe there is a potion called “Felix Felicitas,” which is basically liquid luck. Anyone who has read the episode will love the name. RW

  12. Hi Red Witch!
    You have received a Best Blog award from me. You do have one of the Best Blogs. Going strong as well.
    If you want to pick it up, please come by Gothic Faery Tales and bring it home.

    Hope your year was fab and there is more to come!
    best wishes!
    Arlene

  13. am interested in this stuff only if it really works

  14. redwitch1 Says:

    Steve, what stuff do you mean? Witchcraft? And what do you mean by it really working? Turning princes into toads?

    It is possible to be a witch—or to consider yourself a witch—without believing in the supernatural at all, or to be a theist of any description; other witches believe in both the supernatural and a god or gods. Each would have a very different answer to how this stuff works, but both think it does.

    Personally, I am not interested in convincing you of what I believe: this blog is designed to explore the representation of witches, not proselytize for Wicca.

    If you are interested in witchcraft or magic, but skeptical, read the entries on Wikipedia and then follow up the books they mention.

    Good luck!

    RW

  15. Red Witch…yer so cool. Didn’t know that you’d answered me again!! Wish you could see me grinning and blushing…liquid luck? Sure could use some sometimes (any old luck ) sometimes…but i won’t sign my name in blood about that…Felix, eh? I STILL like that name! And this is the best site there is. Anywhere. if they don’t get it? Good. best wishes through Solstace, ether and beyond. MY hat is off to you.

  16. Love your avatar. I’ll bet you’ve dazed and confused more than a few yourself…,

  17. alan-loom Says:

    Hi all I seek information about the picture of the cover of this album to see if you tell me which book belongs, or who is your photographer, as it belongs to a coven of the 70 or 80 I would say.

    Please answer in this same section of the blog directly, do not do it through my e-mail.

    Best Regards and thank you very much for your help and interest.

  18. A Spooky Discovery! - Hawtness - The Women of WTF Says:

    [...] site; you know right from the title what you’re getting into, and it does not disappoint. Red Witch has put together a wicked good collection of classic to modern witches, and a good many of them are [...]

  19. This photo is one of a very extensive series** taken late in 1972(?) by John Moss of the coven formed/run by Alex Sanders after his separation from Maxine.

    Some of the series appeared under the title ‘Witches Wedding: The Bride Wore Nothing’, in Witchcraft 1.7 ([Oct?], 1972), pp.40–47

    You will find this picture re-printed in Eric Maple, Witchcraft: The Story of Man’s Quest for Supernatural Power (London: Octopus, 1973), p.130.

    I hope this helps.

    RW

    ** I have seen 27 images from this series.

  20. alan-loom Says:

    Hi redwitch1, thanks for that wonderful information you give me about where to find that picture, It’s just not the Internet can get high-quality scan. May end up buying one of those two books only to have the photo.

    Now I return to take advantage to ask another question, someone on this blog have or has a magazine of the 70s called Witchcraft, attached a few images so that you can see. It is a magazine very difficult to achieve and if someone has it and I can sell the good or you can scan and upload to the Internet will be very welcome for my part, that the pe searched like crazy and can not find them anywhere. I look forward to seeing them see how they are inside.

    redwitch1 I would like to know, you use email or messenger??

    A health and have my poor translation of google translator because I’m from Canary Islands – Spain and write Spanish only:)

    P.D. For redwitch1: “Light The Flame, Bright The Fire, Red Is The Colour – Of Desire” :P

    For the rest: Black Masses, Black Magic & Drugs :P

  21. redwitch1 Says:

    None of these links seem to work.

    But the (rather naughty) magazine that I know of which was called Witchcraft is very hard to get. I still don’t have a complete run, though I have most of them now. There was also a successor called New Witchcraft, which had a lot or articles by Alex Sanders in it. You should keep an eye on eBay for issues, but be warned, they usually sell for about USD100 an issue!

    RW

    Witchcraft [Magazine]: The Monthly Chronicle of Horror, Satanism and the Occult, No.1–22 (1971–74). Published London: TNT Publications. The subtitle does not appear on some numbers.

    New Witchcraft [Magazine], No.1–4 (n.d [1974–75]). Edited by Brian Netscher; Published London: Dulruth Publishing Group.

  22. Thanks again for new information, and I apologize for broken links to photos, upload images to another server.

    Know who are the people of the covers of these magazines.

    These magazines often look for them on ebay many times and never seen eh. 100 USD I would find it very expensive for a simple magazine, but good if we weirdness is normal. If anyone reading this does, please let the enchantment that just want to see them, do not want to take part, just want to see as they are. At least if only one.

    Well, nothing I do not pass me your email and I will keep wanting to know in a more personal, you’re the creator of this blog??

    A GREETING. From Canary Islands, Spain: D

    P.D. The Sex, The Magic, The Ritual…!!!! :D

  23. Again I apologize that these image servers censor me the covers of the magazines. To see if this lasts more than me.

    Often I’ve been pissed about this issue.

    Kind regards, and again sorry for the inconvenience: (

  24. speaking from image censored.
    May you upload (or send me directly) the picture from Gardner published in Arthur Moore’s Manx Scene in 1973.

    http://red-witch.blogspot.com/2007/02/gerald-brosseau-gardner.html

  25. Wow, an image from that blog! It would take a while to find and update those photos. I have had to do it a few times already, since the free image hosts I’ve used keep dropping them. But I will do it soon, during the week perhaps. Until then, hold fire! RW

  26. Subscribe, please.

  27. alan-loom Says:

    Hello again I am the journal’s Bitchcraft above, in the end nobody answered me, if you have these magazines or where you can buy, does anyone have them here?.

    Now apply new information on these four new images.

    Can you tell me who the people in these photos?

    If not see it Can you tell me a book or as you might find these new pictures?

    A health and have the quick question, I just do not have much time.

    THANKS FOR EVERYTHING: D

  28. redwitch1 Says:

    The second link to unidentified people is another one of Alex Sandars and Co., from the same series that you previously asked about.

    As for a good reference: for your purposes, there isn’t one. Very few of the encyclopedias of Witches & Witchcraft include any/good photos. So what you need to do is try to get your hands on a few of the mid-70s coffee-table books on witchcraft. Like those published by Octopus. They are cheap, and after you have searched through them a few times you will start to recognise faces. I have spent a lot of time doing this, and — of the four above — I can only certainly identify one. SO, you are going to have to get used to not being able to identify people. Half of the reason for this blog is not just to explore images of witches, but to help me identify people/places that I can’t identify.

    So, start your own blog! Good luck. RW

  29. I’ve renamed myself when MySpace suddenly started to display my real Name everywhere last Summer, the candy bar Twix formerly kown as Raider in Germany was my first thought. Sounds strong, means nothing, simply perfect… if it was a brand of Kraft Food! :-D

  30. stumbled across something and thought of you. I get the rss feed from your site and dozens of others, including several “sports uniform” sites. Today http://www.uniwatchblog.com/ did a piece on curling pins …. and featured this: http://lh4.ggpht.com/_Bill_S0O4y8/TRrSRm4DwlI/AAAAAAAAAJA/mlLd_dk0BQw/s720/IMG_0281.JPG

    keep on posting!

  31. SpookeeBoo Says:

    Came across this recent posting on ebay of another Dusty Anderson photo. Thought that you might be interested in having a look.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Dusty-Anderson-witch-portrait-photo-Coburn-1945-/380311693847?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item588c57ea17#ht_2795wt_1658

  32. Hello. I love your site and how witches are presented. It has inspired me to do something similar for one of my entries. I will let you know about it when it is done.
    Cheers!
    Dyna :)

  33. Bubbles LaRue Says:

    Fun

  34. Hi Red,
    you know this one already:

    http://agevelez.deviantart.com/art/Outback-Witch-Collaboration-170593799

    The Artist has actually a little fetish for Witches:

    http://agevelez.deviantart.com/

    The Outback Witch made me think of a calendar “Sexy Witches of the World”, two stereoptypes (folkloristic & national) in one. Well, Miss October could be French (feat. a Baguette), Miss October (there’s only this month) could be a Eskimo (feat. a Harpoon) and so on… to find a publisher isn’t such a big problem, the 12 sophisticated artworks are. But if you put a spell on the people at deviantart, they could start an official contest… just an idea!
    Wicked regards,
    Twix

    PS: “Sexy Witch” is “Heisse Hexe” (“Heiss” = “Hot”) in German, too. It’s a brand name and a crying shame, because it’s the most disgusting fast junk food you can think of:

    http://www.langnese-business.de/werbemittel/heisse_hexe.html

    Here’s the original “hot” logo from the 80’s:

    http://antiteilchen.com/2009/08/19/heisse-hexe/

    Not yummy, pure plastic!

  35. Joe Bianco Says:

    The nude model Pamela Green was a member of the naturist club Spielplatz in Bricket Wood, England.
    Ross Nichols, founder of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids used to visit the place and it was at Spielplatz he first met Gerald Gardner, who later established his first coven at Bricket Wood. Pamela Green’s cat was called Pyewacket. Pyewacket was one of the familiars detected by the “Witchfinder General” Matthew Hopkins in March 1644 in the town of Maningtree, Essex, UK.
    Pamela Green features in an 8mm Cine film called WITCHES BREW (1960) under her alter ego Rita Landre.

    Kamera Cine Films Film No.14
    RITA LANDRE in WITCHES BREW
    The Queen of glamour photography makes her first appearance in cine film with this feature, and what an entrance . . . Night is mystic and who but the fabulous Rita would choose this time to weave her spell over the viewer? Watch her making her magic rites in preparation for the witches’ sabbath and for anyone wanting sex appeal, which will leave them spellbound, this is the brew.’

    You can find out more about Pamela Green at http://www.pamela-green.co.uk

  36. Roxxie Love Says:

    A wonderful work! Seems you have a witch persona as stong as I do. Thank you for all of the work and research that goes into your blog!

  37. SCOTTtheBADGER Says:

    You have not posted in two months, are you OK, down in the land of the Drop Bears?

  38. Happy holidays!

  39. Good afternoon,

    Concerning this, ‘Witchcraft [Magazine]: The Monthly Chronicle of Horror, Satanism and the Occult, No.1–22 (1971–74). Published London: TNT Publications. The subtitle does not appear on some numbers’, would one of the issues you have happen to be vol. 2, no. 8 (1973). There’s an article I’m interested in, which appears in that magazine. I hope it wouldn’t be too much trouble to get a copy of it.

    In the meantime, great blog. :)

  40. redwitch1 Says:

    Thanks Carl. A few of these I don’t/didn’t have! Only two more and I will have the set (finally). RW

  41. Which issues do you still need to complete the set? – I’ll look out for them for you.

  42. Cheers, Carl! Any that feature articles on Sean Manchester, David Farrant and/or the Highgate Vampire case. :D

  43. Ms. Red Witch,

    You have collected the finest set of witch images and data on the planet!!! It is a pleasure to view your site and I was wondering how I can send you some images that you may not already have.
    I look forward to your reply.

    Wen

  44. Just wanted to inform you that we’re highlighting your work on our Facebook page for no cost, and you can find it here: http://www.soberartspace.org (or facebook.com/soberartspace).

    If you’d rather not receive the attention, please let us know and we’ll take down the post. Have a wonderful holiday season and I hope you “like” our page while you’re there, and keep in touch with any work you’d like us to promote!

    Peace and blessings,

    Don Merwin
    info@soberartspace.org

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