WITCHCRAFT


WITCHCRAFT
   a widespread system of BELIEFS and practices involving supernatural power and agencies thought to influence human affairs. It is generally distinguished from SORCERY and takes many FORMS in different CULTURES. Sometimes the conscious action of individuals is involved, on other occasions it operates without conscious effort as a result of inherited powers or alien forces. Since the ENLIGHTENMENT it has been usual to regard witchcraft as an IRRATIONAL system of beliefs belonging to a primitive past. But, anthropologists, beginning with EVANS-PRITCHARD, have shown that witchcraft involves a system of thought which once accepted follows a logical pattern. In the West popular belief in witchcraft died out during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to be revived in the late nineteenth century by GARDNER and other OCCULTISTS as a form of RITUAL MAGIC and continues today with groups like WICCA. In other parts of the world witchcraft has never died out although its manifestation is very different due to the SOCIAL setting from modern witchcraft in the West.

Concise dictionary of Religion. 2012.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Witchcraft — • As commonly understood, involves the idea of a diabolical pact or at least an appeal to the intervention of the spirits of evil Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Witchcraft     Witchcraft …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Witchcraft — «Witchcraft» Сингл Pendulum из альбома Immersion Выпущен 18 июля 2010 года (цифровая загрузка) 19 июля 2010 года (CD сингл) 15 ноября 2010 года(винил) Формат CD сингл, загрузка, грампластинка Записан …   Википедия

  • witchcraft — O.E. wiccecræft, from wicce (see WITCH (Cf. witch)) + cræft power, skill (see CRAFT (Cf. craft)). Witchcraft was declared a crime in English law in 1542; trials there peaked in 1580s and 1640s but fell sharply after 1660. The last, in 1717, ended …   Etymology dictionary

  • witchcraft — witch craft (w[i^]ch kr[a^]ft), n. [AS. wiccecr[ae]ft.] [1913 Webster] 1. The practices or art of witches. [1913 Webster] 2. Hence: Sorcery; enchantments; intercourse with evil spirits. [1913 Webster + PJC] 3. Power more than natural;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Witchcraft — Allgemeine Informationen Genre(s) Doom Metal Gründung 2000 Website http://www.witchcrafthome.com/ …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • witchcraft — wizardry, witchery, sorcery, *magic, alchemy, thaumaturgy …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • witchcraft — [n] spell casting, magic abracadabra*, bewitchment, black art, black magic, charisma, conjuring, divination, enchantment, hocus pocus*, hoodoo*, incantation, jinx, magnetism, mumbo jumbo*, necromancy, occult, occultism, sorcery, spell,… …   New thesaurus

  • witchcraft — ► NOUN ▪ the practice of magic, especially the use of spells and the invocation of evil spirits. See also WICCA(Cf. ↑Wiccan) …   English terms dictionary

  • witchcraft — [wich′kraft΄] n. [ME wicchecrafte < OE wiccecræft] 1. the power or practices of witches; specif., a) black magic; sorcery b) white magic 2. an instance of the use of black magic or white magic 3. bewitching attraction or charm SYN …   English World dictionary

  • Witchcraft — For other uses, see Witchcraft (disambiguation). Witch redirects here. For other uses, see Witch (disambiguation). The classic image of the witch astride a besom broom …   Wikipedia

  • witchcraft — /wich kraft , krahft /, n. 1. the art or practices of a witch; sorcery; magic. 2. magical influence; witchery. [bef. 950; ME wicchecraft, OE wiccecraeft. See WITCH, CRAFT] Syn. 1. See magic. * * * Introduction  the exercise or invocation of… …   Universalium


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