If your kids want to pretend that they’re wizards and witches, let’s show them a real magic book!
More from the Folger page:
One of the treasures in the Folger collection is a handwritten book of magic spells that is over 400 years old. The book is written in English, but also includes magical terms like “abracadabra” and drawings of angels, demons, dragons, and other supernatural creatures.
This book was used by many people over many, many years. Owners added their own notes into the margins, and one person even wrote in page numbers.
Although people in the Middle Ages and even during Shakespeare’s time used magic for lots of different reasons, including healing sick people, helping to find lost objects, or finding the guilty person when a crime was committed, magic was often done in secret.
I wanted to make some sort of King James reference, since he was supposedly more heavily into the whole witchcraft thing? But this book dates from 1580. I wonder what Shakespeare’s actual experience with this sort of magic might have been?