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The Story of a Witch

Updated on June 20, 2020

My grand-grand mother was a witch. She was so good that even the angels loved her. They stole her from this life quietly without a warning on a sunny summer day. She died at the age of 90, without suffering.

I don't know how she got to be a witch or who taught her but my grandma told me she had a hard life as a young girl -the daughter of a horse thief and a Greek beauty. I didn't get to know her very much for when she died I was probably 9 years old. All I know about her came manly from my grandmother and some from my sister.

Her name  was Maria, the same as grandma, the same as my daughter...but Maria is a very common name. Here is her story, as it came to me.

She must have been born around 1885 in a small Romanian village, where the air was so pure, and the sky so blue that it would break like thin ice if you scream. The village sat on a valley, between numerous hills, sprouting everywhere like dinner rolls on a baking pan, topped with deep dark forests, where wolves where hunting the cattle. 

Meadow with Crucifix

from http://www.ziaruldevrancea.ro
from http://www.ziaruldevrancea.ro

Her father was the son of the village's priest, a well respected man, with a long white beard specific to christian orthodox priests. He raised his children in love of God and tried to make proud men out of them and he mostly succeeded, except for this one, the witch's father. He was all after gold and money. In his very early youth he started a business, trading horses. People said he stole the horses and then sold them but I think some of them he actually bought.

One day, traveling along Danube river, he halt in a port, called Braila (a very nice city to visit today) where he met a family who just emigrated from Greece and wanted to settle there. He help them for a while not only because the money involved but mainly because they had a daughter. He fell in love with her. My grandma never said how they got married but she did said that the Greek girl never wanted to marry him. So, he kidnapped her.  Now, in those days, kidnapping a girl was, in most cases, a romantic gesture. A young man would steal a girl because he loved her and she would run away with him because her parents would not let them be together. This wasn't the case for the Greek girl. Her parents almost exchange her for the services they received. 

He brought her in his house where they lived together for few years, enough to have 3 children - two boys and one girl. Then she vanished. I was told that one day when her husband was away from home with business she run away with another man. The husband never married again.

His horse business made him good money. He never gave a dime to the children. So, by the end of his 50's they killed him. They committed patricide. My grand-grandmother must have not been part of the plan since she didn't get any money. Or she may have known but the brothers kept her quiet somehow. They got away with the crime but the community never forgiven them.  

The church

from www.primariadanciulesti.ro/
from www.primariadanciulesti.ro/

Maria was a tall, strong woman, a fierce young lady who once bit a man with a log stick she had torn from a fence. She got married and had kids of her own. By the time her younger daughter got engaged, Maria was already known as a witch.

Her husband fought and died in the first World War and Maria had to raised her children all by herself. She worked the land and kept the house. She lived from the crop she harvested, mainly grains for bread and corn for polenta, vegetables like potatoes, beans, carrots, onions, radishes and others that she stored for winter, fruits like apples and pears she would preserved them in hay to keep them fresh over the winter, also grapes and plums that she made them into wine and spirits. She may have cultivated tomatoes and herbs and other seasonals like lettuce or cucumbers. She also pickled cabbage, papers, cucumbers and carrots. The land supplied the food but she must not have had any other income.

Her brothers left the village and went to find fortune in Bucharest. I do not know how everything turned out with them but one came back home, sick with tuberculosis. He tore down the old cottage and built a big two story house and laid down to die. He left his house to my mother. That is the house I was born and grew up till I was 8 years old.

Pictures from my childhood village

The mayor house of Danciulesti
The mayor house of Danciulesti
The statue of unknown soldier
The statue of unknown soldier
a villager in folkloric costume
a villager in folkloric costume
Fountain on Ceptura
Fountain on Ceptura

Today, looking back. I think the house had something magic, or it's just because all houses we grow up seem special. The outside stairway that linked the first and second level was huge and sometime I was scared to go up because i thought the stairs may detach from the house and take me away. Sometime I was afraid to go to the second level because was always dark and cold, rarely populated. The first floor was the one I liked the most. There was this special shelf above the fireplace in the kitchen where my grandma used to keep her honey. She also used to make butter. My treat was always a peace of homemade bread with butter and honey. But the honey was never enough so, when nobody was around, I would get a chair and rich up on the shelf for the honey jar. There was also the jar with salt and some other smaller jars and bottles, filled with herbs and liquids. I knew the salt and I also knew witch one was the parsley jar or dill jar or other herbs and spices used for cooking. But there were these other jars and bottles I knew nothing about. Any time I would get myself a spoonful of honey, I would check out the other stuff. Some would smell like flowers, some would smell like cow droppings or just plain fad. Some of the liquids tasted like water and some of them, most of them were actually bitter. One day my grandma caught me there and she said that if I touch them again something bad is going to happen.

That was the shelf where my grand-grandmother, the witch, kept her potions and elixirs. She was old then and maybe many of her powers just got weaker because it doesn't seems to me that I got any bad spell by mistake. But I can only imagine if she had that much gadgets full with magic drinks and powders in her eighty's how many more would she have had in her 30's or 40's. She was well known in the village as a witch. I like to believe that she was the good kind of witch, the kind that made people feel good, get married, have children, overcome illnesses and diseases. She took her raw materials from the meadows and forests, from the small river that ran through the hills, from animals and birds in the wilderness. My sister told me that Maria, our grand-grandmother, would wake up in the middle of the night, make a big fire in the backyard and boil her elixirs, necked, singing and dancing and praying to Venus.

Her cures and spells might have worked because the people living in the village and beyond kept coming to her to solve their problems. Also they never isolated her and her family. Not even when my grandma's very old husband died unexpectedly, just days after their wedding. A short period of mourning ended up with my grandma leaving the village so she can meet her destiny, in Bucharest. She dreamt she will met my grandfather in a very big city and they will get married and live happily ever after.

None of witch's daughters took over her witchcraft. My grandma, indeed, met her new husband in a big city. They returned to her village and started a family. My mother was their second child. I am my mom's second child too. As for Maria, my grand-grandmother, God bless her, she passed away in a sunny summer day, alone with her angels. without a candle to light her way. I still remember her from a picture somebody took when she was an old woman, picture now lost among generation.

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    • profile image

      Kathy 

      5 years ago

      I love the photos, however - and I mean this in kindness to give you the truth, that any form of witchcraft is wrong, because it is ungodly. It is wrong because it is not based on truth but deceit and falsehood. Other names for forms of witchcraft are the occult - a general term for seeking extra sensory power or performing a deed to get power of control over something (whether sickness) or someone to have advantage over them-manipulation if you will.

      The truth is in the bible - God says go to him for information. He has told us and given us the truth - that he sent his son Jesus to die for our sin, and all are sinners, so we must be born again. (John 3:16) Jesus came to establish the government of God (kingdom) in which he will be inaugurated at his second coming. His shed blood, and our faith in his sacrifice on the cross is the only thing that saves us from our sins. (and the wrath to come against all unGodliness.)Witchcraft is only one kind of sin, but we will be judged according to God's degree. Here is the thing - he punished his Son on the cross for us, so we could go free if we receive him and worship him and depend on him for everything. Jesus said that their is coming a day when those who worship him in Spirit and Truth. Learn the truth. Read his word the bible. Any other view of God is skewed, except what God has declared in his word. He is coming again.(Mathew 24) shalom, Kathy

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      8 years ago

      Monis Mas, the photos are from that very village. I am glad you liked it.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      8 years ago

      Thank you Chemistry Book and forgive I answer you so late. You are right, I should write a book. For my daughter so she can read it to her kids.

    • Monis Mas profile image

      Agnes 

      8 years ago

      What an intriguing story... Mysterious, dark at times. I enjoyed very much. Also, great photos. Voted Awesome!

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      9 years ago

      Thank you DS Duby.

    • DS Duby profile image

      DS Duby 

      9 years ago from United States, Illinois

      excellent article and pictures, I really enjoyed the story of your Grand - Grand Mother

    • Chemistry Book profile image

      Chemistry Book 

      9 years ago

      You should go write a book. I could picture the story like a movie scene. So beautiful!

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      9 years ago

      Thank you jobert and jerald.

    • profile image

      jobert and jerald 

      9 years ago

      nice story....

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      10 years ago

      Hi Rossana, and thank you for your kind comment. I believe the horse tieves were girls tieves actually. I would love to here your story.

    • profile image

      Rossana 

      10 years ago

      Wow, this story sounds just like my relative Moise's His mother was kidnapped was kidnapped by a horse theif. I wonder if this is my uncle posting this, lol. I have a similar history too, and am psychic, but living in the states.

    • profile image

      Website Examiner 

      10 years ago

      Oh yes, this was where it all started. It will be fascinating to see where your creative talent brings you next. Best of luck to you.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      KFlippin, thank you for being so kind to read my story and for your very nice words. I agree, the story is unusual and there are other details I did not included here. I'll take your your suggerstion and maybe one day I'll turn it into something larger then just a hub. Thanks for visiting.

    • KFlippin profile image

      KFlippin 

      11 years ago from Amazon

      Without a doubt this is a fascinating read, and yes it is a very good basis for writing a book, and your particular voice would be the one tell it so very well. You bring to life your Grand Grandmother Maria and the times of which you speak.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Tina V, I have never thought to write a mistery book based on this story but now I thin it will be a great idea. Oh, there are so many things I could add. This is a great compliment for me. Thank you.

    • TINA V profile image

      TINA V 

      11 years ago

      I think you can write a mystery book about the witch. You can do it based on a true story of your grandmother; or you can create your own imaginative characters. But I think you can attract the interest of your readers. Great hub!

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Website Examiner, thank you for letting me know. What a great surprise!

    • profile image

      Website Examiner 

      11 years ago

      Cameciob, I have just written a review about this hub. Good luck!

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Website Examiner, I'm honored by your visit. Thank you for your comments. I tried to do my best because I think Hub Pages deserves it.

    • profile image

      Website Examiner 

      11 years ago

      I enjoyed the vivid depictions, sounds like a writer to me.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Ralwus, it is coming down to generation through DNA. Now, that moonshine is on you! That’s why you write like you do.

      Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      ralwus 

      11 years ago

      This is a very quaint and poignant story dear. I really enjoyed it. My dad's mom was said to be a mountain witch, but really, she just made moonshine, I think. But then she did have curative powers too.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Hi James and thank you for the nice comment. I’m happy like my “spooky” story. As for the writing, I think you are right but also I discovered google documents and google translate. They helped a lot.

      Thanks for stopping.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 

      11 years ago from Chicago

      Wow! I thoroughly enjoyed your spooky story. Thank you for sharing it. Your writing has improved dramatically! Well done!

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Lol, De Greek, my husband is not that old :), but he doesn’t know this story yet…

      Nice to meet you and welcome to hub pages.

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Hi Tony, I think every family has a story that needs to be brought to light. I hope my daughter will, one day, read this and understands where she comes from.

      Thanks you for commenting.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      11 years ago from UK

      From your family history, I hope that your husband has sense enough not to cross you :-)

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 

      11 years ago from South Africa

      I found this Hub thoroughly engrossing and full of fascinating information. What a life your great-grandmother must have lived. Such people are treasures, reaqlly!

      Thanks so much for sharing this lovely story.

      Love and peace

      Tony

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Hi Nell, wow, you have a very interesting history. I was always afraid of Tarot cards. I did some cards and coffee reading myself but never Tarot, I was paralyzed with fear. You must inherited some of your mother’s powers. My grandma and my mom were reading in corn or beans.

      Thank you for reading and commenting.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      11 years ago from England

      Hi, that was fascinating. My husbands family are gypsies that originated in Romania, then went over to india. I have always been called the white witch because I am a pagan, and have always done the Tarot cards, and it seems to run in my mothers side of the family, even though she would never call herself a witch, she always did and said strange things that came true. thanks I really enjoyed this. nell

    • cameciob profile imageAUTHOR

      cameciob 

      11 years ago

      Challah1202, you are my first reader. Nice to meet you.

      All but first picture are from the village I grew up and they mean very much to me.

      Thank you for stopping and commenting.

    • Challah1202 profile image

      Challah1202 

      11 years ago from Chandler, TX

      I loved the pictures and the sense of mystery in your story. Hub away!

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