The oldest roots of the European concepts of witchcraft and magic lie in the Hebrew and other cultures of the ancient Near East and in the Celtic, Nordic and Germanic Societies of the North and West. The authors of this volume survey three crucial aspects of this earliest phase of development. These are the role of magical incantations and rituals against witchcraft in Mesopotamia in the last three millennia BC, the attitudes to witchcraft and magic in the Old Testament and in later Jewish tradition, and the beliefs and legends associated with trolldomor (witchcraft) in pre-Christian Scandanavia.
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