My mother in law.................. No really my mother in law
This is a very old term it means, someone who recieved their wisdom from observation or passed down from the generation before them usually grandmother to granddaughter or mother to daughter etc. This is all a form of apprenticeship, hands on training/learning.
One of the theories abouth the term witch is it got it's origin from Wic or Wit meaning wise but both those roots (wit and wic) also meant herbs or sticks and a wich was one who gathered herbs or sticks from the roadside.
I was lucky enough to have two (wise) grandmothers who trained me at the end of their apron strings in what many people called "ole wives tales" The use of herbs and simple remedies because they were very poor and they had no other options
They also taught me to use the Farmer's Almanac and plant and harvest by moon cycles.... to watch for signs around me. It took me years to realize that I was trained to be a witch.
I also studied about many neopagan disciplines including crafting with covens and I realized that many of these were designed to collect followers not to cultivate spiritual intuition or a means to connect to the earth. So it is back to my roots.
Hope this helps explains the term
Frank LOL Thanks for letting me know.
JeaniK, Thank you so much for the in depth answer to my question. I think that this would make a great hub subject for you to write on. Welcome to HubPages and I wish you much success here.
Most small village communities throughout pre Christian Europe would have had a Hedge Witch within their midst, although they most certainly would not have been referred to by such a derogatory term.
In very broad simple terms they were the village healer who gathered and used the plants and herbs of the land to aid and cure the sick. Within their craft they were extremely knowledgeable and this almost certainly was acquired at the knee of their mother’s and grandmother’s handed down over generations.
Over time such talents would have created an almost mystical aura around the person, mostly likely encouraged to give them a sense of power and importance within the community. Over all they were a force for good and not evil although they undoubtedly had the as much knowledge to destroy life as save it.
The arrival of new religions and their overzealous messengers who were spreading the word that only God had the power and the right to cure the sick led eventually to the lies and false accusations of ‘Witchcraft’ and ‘Devil worship’ (both religious inventions) that led to the persecution of all those involved within the craft.
As usual such blatant ignorance knocked back human knowledge for centuries and more or less had to be rediscovered to give us the basis of many present day medical cures.
I suppose the closest thing today might be a ‘Herbalist’ although I’m sure many of the present day so called ‘old wives cures’ that still hang around have their roots buried that far back.
They are a form of druid who specialize in things smaller than trees; they picked hedges.
Hedges are a form of shrubbery. If you can chop one down with a herring, you might make friends with the Knights Who Say "Ni."
It might, however, anger the witch in charge of that particular hedge. You could be turned into a Newt Gingrich, or worse.
It is a pierce of landscaping equipment, like a "Hedge Hog" or a "Ditch Witch". It is used in places like France where they have thick hedge rows that cover ditches I think John Deere makes one. Check on the eBay capsule
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