Fire Magic (Elements of Witchcraft, 3)

Josephine Winter

ISBN-13: 978-0738763736

Llewellyn Publications


In the introduction to Josephine Winter’s Fire Magic, she reflects on the central role that Fire plays in human ritual life: from bonfires to candles, Fire often features prominently in magical and religious practices the world over. However, Fire Magic is much more than an account of the element as an abstract concept—it is a thorough exploration of Fire in both its symbolic and physical forms in the roles it plays in religion, magic and daily life.

 The early chapters of Winter’s book provide a fascinating overview of the history, folklore and mythology of Fire as found in many different cultures. Her research is detailed but the writing remains light and approachable. She often sites primary texts and while she is quick to note where historical understanding differs from more contemporary interpretations, she has a refreshing way of dismissing neither. For example, her section on the Goddess Cerridwen focusses primarily on her role in Welsh mythology while also addressing her more modern representation as a crone Goddess without rejecting either.

 The latter two-thirds of the book delivers a wealth of information about the element of Fire as it relates to magical practice. Winter provides chapters dedicated to herbs, crystals, animals, astrological and tarot symbolism and more. Each of these sections offers detailed and illuminating information. The rituals, spells and recipes that close out the book draw on the information presented earlier and provide practical, readily usable resources for both new and experienced practitioners to draw on.

 This volume is part of a larger series on the Elements published by Llewellyn Books. However, whether you intend to purchase the other books in the series or not, this volume certainly stands up as a work of its own. Winter’s insights and research are sure to be a valuable addition to your bookshelf.

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