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Subtitled A History of Witchcraft and Black Magic in Modern Times, this book is a study focusing on the malefic: curses, hexes and wicked witchcraft. Author Thomas Waters takes the reader on a fascinating journey from wild Scottish islands to the folklore-rich West Country, the immense territories of the British Empire to the pulsing heart of metropolitan London. The book explores how superstition and folklore have shaped our understanding of 'bad luck' and the vagaries of fortune, and how harm could be healed by vibrant figures such as spae-wives and cunning-men. This is a curious and, at times, even controversial look at curses and cures and their place in society.


New Haven, London: Yale University Press, 2020. Paperback, 265 pages. New.

Cursed Britain – Thomas Waters