Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits by Emma Wilby
Look inside with Google Book Preview
Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits
By Emma Wilby

Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits

Shamanistic Visionary Traditions in Early Modern British Witchcraft and Magic

By (author) See other recent books by Emma Wilby
Format: Paperback

Normal Price: $56.23
Your Price: $50.61 AUD, inc. GST
Shipping: $7.95 per order
You Save: $5.62! (10% off normal price)
Plus...earn $2.53 in Boomerang Bucks
Availability: Available Available, ships in 10-12 days

Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits by Emma Wilby

Book Description

This book contains the first comprehensive examination of popular familiar belief in early modern Britain. It provides an in-depth analysis of the correlation between early modern British magic and tribal shamanism, examines the experiential dimension of popular magic and witchcraft in early modern Britain, and explores the links between British fairy beliefs and witch beliefs. In the hundreds of confessions relating to witchcraft and sorcery trials in early modern Britain there are detailed descriptions of intimate working relationships between popular magical practitioners and familiar spirits of either human or animal form. Until recently historians often dismissed these descriptions as elaborate fictions created by judicial interrogators eager to find evidence of stereotypical pacts with the Devil. Although this paradigm is now routinely questioned, and most historians acknowledge that there was a folkloric component to familiar lore in the period, these beliefs, and the experiences reportedly associated with them, remain substantially unexplored. This book examines the folkloric roots of familiar lore from historical, anthropological and comparative religious perspectives. It argues that beliefs about witches' familiars were rooted in beliefs surrounding the use of fairy familiars by beneficent magical practitioners or cunning folk', and corroborates this through a comparative analysis of familiar beliefs found in traditional Native American and Siberian shamanism. The author explores the experiential dimension of familiar lore by drawing parallels between early modern familiar encounters and visionary mysticism as it appears in both tribal shamanism and medieval European contemplative traditions. These perspectives challenge the reductionist view of popular magic in early modern Britain often presented by historians.

Buy Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits book by Emma Wilby from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.

Book Details

ISBN: 9781845190798
ISBN-10: 1845190793
Format: Paperback
(152mm x 229mm x 20mm)
Pages: 317
Imprint: Sussex Academic Press
Publisher: Sussex Academic Press
Publish Date: 21-Nov-2005
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions...

Books By Author Emma Wilby

Visions of Isobel Gowdie by Emma Wilby Visions of Isobel Gowdie, Paperback (June 2010)

The confessions of Isobel Gowdie are widely recognised as the most extraordinary on record in Britain. Using historical, psychological, and anthropological perspectives this book sets out to separate the voice of Isobel Gowdie from that of her interrogators, and to determine the experiences and beliefs which may have generated her confessions.

» View all books by Emma Wilby


» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits book by Emma Wilby and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a member - it's free to sign up!)

Write a book review

Author Biography - Emma Wilby

Emma Wilby is an independent scholar and freelance journalist, with a graduate background in Humanities. The present book is the result of research interests developed while working for a masters degree in the History and Literature of Witchcraft at the University of Exeter.

Boomerang Bucks close

For every $20 you spend on books, you will receive $1 in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars. You can use your Boomerang Bucks as a credit towards a future purchase from Boomerang Books. Note that you must be a Member (free to sign up) and that conditions do apply.

Recent books by Emma Wilby close
Visions of Isobel Gowdie by Emma Wilby
» close