The Wicked Shall Decay: Charms, Spells and Witchcraft of Old Britain

'The Wicked Shall Decay' collects spells, charms, and occult magical formulae that were once regularly in practice in rural Victorian Britain. At the birth of the Industrial Revolution, folk magic was still very much in currency, and often constituted an 'occult poetry' of the countryside. Protection from evils spirits, the Devil, and most important of all, witches, was of paramount concern. Thus, proven magical remedies and charms were passed within families, and among the cunning folk --the specialist healers, spirit charmers, and diviners-- as prized receipts. For example, a hundred new pins, thrust into the heart of a bull, was a sovereign spell to remove bewitchment. The number of these charms was vast, and 'The Wicked Shall Decay' preserves only a fraction.