Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.201: Witch Bottles

Further evidence regarding the fate of Reverend John Broadham has appeared in the form of this grotesque witch bottle, recently discovered in the basement of All Hallow's Church in Northwich Park - the only part of the building which survived the fire of 1969 which supposedly claimed the life of the good reverend. There are certainly records of similar bottles being discovered throughout Horsingdon during the late 1960s and 1970s - a time when the UK was in the grip of something of a moral panic which clustered around tabloid-induced fears that the practice of witchcraft and satanism were sweeping through the nation and corrupting its youth.

Witch bottles are usually apotropaic in nature - typically used to trap the malignant power of witchcraft; Horsingdon witch bottles, on the other hand, have often been employed in a manner wholly antithetical to their traditional application: nail or hair clippings - or some other personal effect - of the intended victim are placed within the vessel, after which the bottle is secreted in some obscure corner of their abode where it is unlikely to be discovered. The witch bottle then functions as a kind of beacon for whatever thing the sorcerous assailant has conjured for the occasion of the victim's doom - supposedly to be dragged off to some nameless place for some nameless purpose. In light of which, it is unlikely that Reverand Broadham - wherever or whatever he is now - will ever be seen again.

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