My Life as an Archetype II


WITCH
n. a person who professes or is supposed to practice magic or sorcery; a sorceress
n. a practitioner of a Nature-based religion founded on ancient beliefs, which honors both male and female divine principles
and includes the practice of magic, esp healing magic and divination
n. a fascinating or enchanting woman

From the Anglo-Saxon wicca (“the wise one”).

The young witch is first and foremost a sensual and sexual creature – her power centered directly in her femininity. She is beautiful, self-assured, powerful. She knows how to “bewitch” and seduce men. A Siren, her feminine allure is more powerful than the strongest man’s fist. She can tame the wild man, like Circe does in The Odyssey, turning the Greek hero’s men into swine – beasts who are easily controlled. She can tempt, beguile and “charm” with her pretty face, her scantily-clad, curvaceous body, her tender touch, her soft voice. Her body and voice are her weapons and men are powerless to resist her. link

fascinare
v. to bewitch

The Witch Archetype uses knowledge of the universal laws of nature, the conscious mind and esoteric powers to manifest their desires. The Witch may be one of your Archetypes if you have the gift of understanding how to transform situations, influence people, and make your visions and dreams a reality.


The Moon
sunnyray.org

All images remain the property of their original owners. All rights reserved.

In classical times, ancient Thessalian witches were believed to control the moon… link
The Moon is more than just a Wicca symbol. She is a primary Wiccan Goddess. The Moon represents the Feminine Aspect of the Divine…(and) is perhaps the most universal Wicca symbol. link
The Moon is very symbolic to witches and pagans who use the time of the new, waxing, full and waning quarters for magic and spell-making… link
It came to represent the goddess…Hecate, and via the patronage of (her) came to be used as a symbol of Byzantium

Hecate   [also Sorceress]
Trivia
Lilith*   [also Female Demon, Lamia/Vampire/Succubus, Seductress]
Matteuccia di Francesco  [also Sorceress]
Aradia
Pasiphae
Jadis, The White Witch ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
[daughter of Lilith]
Jennifer  ~ I Married a Witch [played by Veronica Lake]
Prue, Piper, Phoebe, Paige ~ Charmed
ALL the Owens women ~ Practical Magic
Sarah, Bonnie, Nancy, Rochelle & Lirio ~ The Craft
Alexandra, Jane & Sookie ~ The Witches of Eastwick
Samantha, Endora, Serena et al ~ Bewitched
List of fictional witches  (wiki)

Hecate Poole

Penny Dreadful
* “…Jewish folk tradition, which associates Lilith both with long hair (a symbol of dangerous feminine seductive power
in Jewish culture), and with possessing women by entering them through mirrors.” link

We interrupt this article to issue an important public service message:

What’s the difference between a Sorceress and a Witch?!?

(You’d think an answer to that question would be a simple one…)

“The term ‘witch’ has been traced by etymologists to the Old English ‘wicce,’ meaning a female magician or Sorceress. Specifically, a ‘wicce’ was a woman who made dealings with evil spirits. Although not verified, it has been suggested that the original meaning of ‘wicce’ was more precise than as a synonym for Sorceress, referring to a specific set of practices. In 1584, Reginald Scot observed in his ‘The Discoverie of Witchcraft’ that ‘witch’ and ‘wise woman’ were essentially synonymous.” link

“…sorcerers as dominant persons who deliberately use rituals to impose their will and mediate cosmic power both for constructive and destructive purposes. Political leaders often possess a monopoly of sorcery skills. (!) By contrast, Stephen characterizes witches as socially unimportant persons who harbor totally destructive powers and carry blame for misfortune and death. Their powers cannot be controlled. They are accused, denounced, and punished.” link

(There are still too many overlapping, grey areas…)

“What drew me to the image of the witch is that she is a dangerous figure of female power, associated with fear of female sexuality and the need to silence and burn women who are too beautiful or have too much social & sexual power or too much knowledge…this is the image men want in their fantasy woman…” link

(Now that’s more like it.)
Witches are seductive icons of sexual power and knowledge.

(OK, this kinda sums up my Sorceress Archetype. Actually, it can be used to describe ALL of them.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.)

 


lived alone in the woods, surrounded by animals


had a cat

“Witches are often portrayed as very knowledgeable in the workings of nature, especially plants and weather. A Witch will be closer to earth watching the seasons turn and advising people when to plant their crops. It’s common for witches to live alone in the woods, and to be a nature-lover…A Witch probably has a green thumb too, so she can grow herbs for her magic potions…Witches are often seen around animalscats are the most common…” link **


The Three Lives of Thomasina*** (1963)

Played by Susan Hampshire, Lori MacGregor was labeled a “Witch” because of her ability to heal animals – wild & domestic. They’d come to her when sick or wounded knowing she’d care for them.

At the time this Disney movie was released I had a ginger cat named Puff (No, he wasn’t named after the Magic Dragon. He was named after the character in a beloved children’s book: Puff the Blue Kitten) – and I
(1) wanted to be a veterinarian
(2) dreamed of living somewhere surrounded by animals
(3) loved cats, of course

As befitting this Archetype, Lori’s mysterious “power to heal” also fueled my passion for all things extraordinary.

** Witches & dragons get on very well together. They often work with and ride on the back of dragons; and if the bond is especially close, the dragon will (on occasion) allow the witch to remove a scale or two from its body to use in spells or herbal remedies.

*** Interestingly, Don Chaffey directed both this AND Jason and The Argonauts.

 

“Witches are often seen around animals, especially nocturnal ones, although cats are the most common by far, especially black ones. The animal is usually a Familiar that aids in spells in some way or is sometimes magic in their own right. The animals being able to communicate with their owners through telepathy (or just being able to speak to all humans) is common. When a Witch doesn’t have a cat, other animals they might have include owls, crows, toads and mice…they usually go barefoot.” link

(I love shoes just as much as the next woman, but I’ve ALWAYS gone barefoot around the house…Dad used to make fun of me.)

What a coincidence that our next Witch Archetype’s “quirk” was, you guessed it:  going barefoot. (Kinda scary, isn’t it?)


Bell Book and Candle (1958)

First of all, can we talk about that tree. Today, it wouldn’t warrant a 2nd look – but back then I’d never seen any Xmas tree like it! So modern/contemporary (typical of the 1950s) which suited Gillian (Kim Novak) perfectly.
(I still love that tree.)

Barefoot
Her “quirk” was a key note in one particular scene.Gillian’s wardrobe (black and red) influenced me early on, creating the beautiful, graceful, and mysterious Witch Persona
(I even dressed my Barbie like her!)

barefootin'

This dress always reminds me of the holiday season.
(One of these days I’ll design something similar for myself.)

I’ll always equate Gil’s bohemian chic style with that of an contemporary urban “Witch”. It will never go out of style.

We can’t forget  Pyewacket, her cat/familiar.

Siamese cats were all the rage after the movie’s release. (We had one and she was a terror!)

“The Siamese originally was in no other country than Siam (now Thailand)…only The King of Siam and his family could own the sacred cats…anyone keeping a Siamese would be punished by death…the Siamese breed is one of the oldest breeds in the world. Kept safe in the Kings Care these animals had some of the purest DNA as a specific species…” link

The last photo appeared on the November 25, 1958 cover of Life. (I was lucky enough to find a copy of that issue at a Flea Market years ago.)

NOTE: I was going to discuss the HORRIFIC change Gillian underwent at the end of the movie but it still sends shivers up my spine. Suffice to say, the brainwashing job amounted to this: If you wanted to get a man/keep a man you had to FORGET WHO YOU REALLY WERE (You know, the woman with whom he FELL IN LOVE WITH IN THE FIRST PLACE.) and transform yourself into this little pink flowery empty SHELL (n. an outer form without substance).

“Feminist scholars note she must trade in her chic Jean Louis wardrobe for a dumpy shirtwaist
and jam her bare feet into spike heels to be worthy of love” – Laura Boyles

“At the end, she gives up all her witchcraft, stops wearing sexy black outfits,
gives away her cat (evil symbol of an independent mind!),
and waits unhappily in her shop, attired in a pretty pastel shirtwaist, until Stewart returns to her.
All her magic and enchantment, and certainly all her power, are gone.
If Stewart’s character fell for the Enchantress in her,
I think he must have been very disappointed to end up with Betty Crocker.” – Kathleen Pierce

(Even as a young girl I knew this whole changeling bit was JUST WRONG!)


Witch (wiki)
Bewitching Names
Season of the Witch
People in the Bible: Lilith
TV Tropes: Witch Species
Mothers, Witches & the Power Archetypes
Erotic Astrology: Lilith Signs
Invidia (wiki)

BELL BOOK AND CANDLE
The Witching Hour
Spellbound by Movies
Bewitching Names: Gillian
A New Look at a Classic Movie
Cats on Film
Cinema Cats


What Type of Witch Would YOU Be?
What Type of Witch ARE You?