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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Horned One

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Never trust a man with horns on his hat.”

(Granny Weatherwax)

 

Yes, it's true: I did meet Old Hornie in the woods at the age of 16.

And no, I'm not going to tell you about it.

I'm not going to tell you about my most intimate sexual experiences, either.

No: those stories, and that story, is, and are, mine to me, not for other ears. This much I will tell you, though: what happened then changed me forever.

You can always tell a newbie by her eagerness to recount—usually at length—her Expeeeeriences. After you've been around for a while, you learn that everybody has had their own. You also learn that you can distinguish the real ones because they're the ones that people don't talk about.

Now there's a fine paradox for you.

Here's the irony: you don't talk because you don't have to. You've been there, you know it was real, and those In the Know can see the changes that it wrought. The eyes will tell you the truth of it. The changes are the story.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Among all the hoodied and red-capped yahoos and yobbos who invaded the US Capitol on Wednesday, one stood out. You know which one I mean.

The one in the horns.

“Guy in horns Capitol” I image-searched. It was more than enough to find what I was looking for.

Horns, fur, paint, and skin. The eye automatically, as if by instinct, draws toward them. How could it not?

In long accordance with ancestral practice, I will not dignify said yob by naming him. Though he sports heathen tattoos and the regalia of the Horned God of Witches, he is (apparently) neither witch nor heathen.

No matter. He's not important. Soon the FBI will be hauling his saggy white ass off to jail, where it probably belongs anyway.

Horns, fur, paint, skin: in combination, instantly iconic. What is it about these primal elements that so draws the eye, that so draws the heart?

Who is it here that draws the heart and eye?

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

Long ago, the Horned looked down from Heaven, and saw that we were cold, and hungry, and in darkness.

Then, in his mighty ruth, he stole the Fire of the Gods, came down, and gave us Fire.

Ever since when, we sing his song at Yule.

 

He Came Down

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In Which Our Intrepid Blogger Makes an Outrageous Claim

Hwæt, we seax-Hwiccum   in síð-dagum...
"Lo, we knife-Witches   in these latter days..."

 

Many peoples worship the Horned God—as god of all Red Life, why wouldn't they?—but to the Latter-Day Tribe of Witches, he is ours, our god in particular.

Why so? Easily answered.

The Horned is especial god of witches, ours to us, because we are his offspring.

As we see it, we are literally the Children of our God.

This is why the Swedish witches called him Antecessor: goer-before, ancestor.

Many tribes trace descent from a common ancestor. Scots Gaelic clann (pronounced klawn), the source of the English word clan, literally means “children (of).” In this, the Tribe (in Witch, that would be Thede) of Witches is no different from any other.

Why are some people witches and some not? Easily answered.

The Horned overshadows our fathers at the moment of our conception.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Visit to St. Cornely's

...if you'll please just step this way, we come to one of the highlights of our tour of St. Cornely's: a Roman Era bas-relief depicting St. Cornely himself, dating to roughly A.D. 425. Though worn, note the quality of the sculpture.

Horns? Rather surprising things to find on the head of a saint, no? Although of course, Moses frequently wears them as well in medieval art, as you know. Well, no, those aren't actually horns per se...the name Cornely derives from the Latin clan name, Cornelius. While the name's ultimate origin is unclear, it's thought to derive from Latin cornu, “horn.” So the horns are, in effect, a visual pun identifying the saint, alluding to his name.

Ah, yes indeed, the saint's nudity: visitors always comment. Surprising, is it not? Although not, of course, unparalleled in Christian art. This alludes to the manner of his death: stripped naked and thrown into the arena to be trampled by wild bulls.

But, of course, he's not entirely naked, is he? Does anyone know the name of the kind of neck-ring that he's wearing? Yes, that's right, a torc: a type of jewelry associated with ancient Celtic nobility. This particular torc is one of the mysteries of St. Cornely's. The reason for its inclusion here is unclear: there's no mention of it in the legend of St. Cornely. Perhaps this sculpture was commissioned by a noble Celtic family: this part of England was once, as you know, the territory of a Celtic tribe called the Dobunni. Perhaps the torc is by way of making a claim of local ancestry for the saint, though of course such a claim would be highly unlikely, historically speaking. As it is, we simply don't know.

Note the bull here to Cornely's right—not looking particularly wild, I must say—with the saint's hand raised in blessing over its head. This alludes to the manner of the saint's death which, according to the rather gruesome logic of canonization, makes St. Cornely the patron saint of cattle and cattle-herding. In fact, the Dobunni were known far and wide for their fine herds, so the choice of this particular saint as patron for this particular parish makes a great deal of sense.

As it happens, Cornely is rather unusual among saints in having two feast days each year, both of which, interestingly, correspond with major events in the cattle-herder's year. The annual Blessing of the Herds falls in late April, just before the cattle would have been driven to the summer pastures, and the other in early November, just after All Saints' Day, at the time of the annual slaughter. Intriguing, no?

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    In fact, there actually is a Roman Era bas-relief of a Horned God in a little parish church up north somewhere (Yorkshire?). (Good
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    No, but you've read my rune: he's the fiction that tells the truth.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    So, the local version of the horned god continued onward wearing St. Cornely as a mask. Is this St. Cornely found in Lives of the

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Little Horn of Ointment

Oh, he's a hard god, the Horned: he hurts, but then he heals.

His seal upon you is a scar, your witch's mark. (They say it's the mark of his teeth.) We are the Scarred, the witches: a people like our god. He, too, is Scarred; I know, for I have seen.

Make him unhappy, and he flogs: publicly, at the Sabbat. Back in the hills whence I come, they say that he uses rose canes to do this.

But to each, he gives a little horn of ointment. He hurts, but then he heals: the rose and the thorn. As the Basque witches told Inquisitor Pierre de Lancre (a curse upon his memory), after he flogs, or sets his mark upon you, he anoints you with his special salve, and heals you of your hurts (Wilby 115).

(This explains why, when examined, the Basque witches—confessions notwithstanding—showed no sign of tooth or lash: the Horned's ointment heals all hurts, they say.)

To my knowledge, anyway, it's been long and long since the rose canes came out at the Sabbat; but I've been there myself, and danced, and seen the scarring, and the anointing thereafter.

Nor should you think that what I say is only metaphor.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Witches Stink

Such a smell of sulfur!”

(Glinda the Good)

 

Witches stink.

No, that's not some sort of paganophobic slur. Seriously, take a whiff. Can you smell it? That little hint of sulfur?

Yes, sulfur. Like god, like people, you might think. Well, yes, that's true, and in a bit I'll tell you the story. (There's a story for everything in the Craft.) But what it really comes down to is the old saw: you are what you eat.

What witches eat are lots (and lots and lots) of the king and queen of sulfurousness: onions and garlic. They're our favorite vegetables.

Food has to get flavor from somewhere. The gentry use meat; well, they can afford to. As for the rest of us, meat is expensive and mostly only for firedays. Most of the time, our food gets its savor grâce à that Royal Couple of the Underworld: you know who I mean.

When the Horned our god came down from heaven (but that's another story for another night), they say that where His left Hoof struck ground, garlic sprang up. (Old Hornie being Old Hornie, of course he landed Left-Hoof first.) Where His right Hoof hit, onions grew. To this day, you'll note that each clove of garlic still looks like half a miniature cloven hoof. Now you know why.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Aline "Macha" O'Brien
    Aline "Macha" O'Brien says #
    OMGs, that sounds delicious! Wish I were able to celebrate with Prodea. xo

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