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Aradia: Gospel of the Witches

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  1,108 Ratings  ·  47 Reviews
This book has been considered a missing link between ancient and modern witchcraft. ARADIA not only inpired Gerald Garner, Doreen Valiente, and other founders of twentieth century neopagan witchcraft, but it also continues to serve as a reference and inspiration for others. Please note: This book is in easy to read true text, not scanned images that can be difficult to dec ...more
ebook, 92 pages
Published September 20th 2003 by NuVision Publications (first published 1899)
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This is a book I had been meaning to read for some time. Thankfully, it's very short and I managed to read it in entirety yesterday. This book is considered important to modern Witchcraft from a historical standpoint. I, however, did not like it and consider it to be a fine example of primitive and unsubstantial folklore you could find. The book has very little to do with Aradia, female savior of the Italian Witches, and seems to be a Christianized version of the history of the Streghe. While I ...more
Steve Cran

In Northern Italy there are vestiges of an ancient faith that maybe still practiced by the common people. It is a vestige left over from the ancient Etruscan religion. The Etruscans lived in Tuscany, Italy. The main Goddess for the practitioners of this faith is the Goddess Diana. She is the Goddess of the moon, queen of the fairies and protector of the down trodden. She is also the goddess of witchcraft.

Charles Godfrey Leland traveled to Italy in the Mid to late 1800's and gather all this mater
Patick Kyteler
Aradia is considered the foundation text for modern witchcraft, especially British Traditional Wicca. It was from this book that Aleister Crowley “borrowed” the invocation of Diana and Aradia for his Thelemic text The Book of the Law, which Gerald Gardner paraphrased for his own original BOS that Doreen Valiente later rewrote into her liturgical masterpiece The Charge of The Goddess (versions 1 & 2).

It amazes me the importance of this book given its size. In many ways it reads like a childr
Zaubin Z
Aug 30, 2007 Zaubin Z rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It was OK. Too disjointed for my tastes. I get that they are stories passed down from generation to generation, but that doesn't make them good. Some are difficult to find a point to. Of course, it is a must read if you are into Stregarian Witchcraft. But only because the characters in the stories are important in the tradition. I just have a problem with the complete lack of continuity, or even correspondence between even the same god or goddess. It's like, here's a story, here's some more rand ...more
Perhaps my taste for mythology has dried up over the years or I'm too focused on the practical to enjoy it.

Regardless, Aradia is a good collection of mythology and poetry. In my younger years, I would have loved it. I'd say it's more appropriate to witches without a trad/denomination, practitioners of Stregheria, or Dianic Wiccans than it is to me.

Still, I suppose one of the tests is being able to tackle it and know that at the end.
Jan 08, 2009 David rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
There's a problem with 19th century religious studies texts is the blatant "my research is better, and oh by the way, read this other work I've written." Not only that, he admits that he's rewritten a lot of the translated texts, to keep with his "feeling" of what the "intent" of the Italian was. His bias is basically shoveled into the work.

I have to admit that there's some useful stuff in there, but I can't really recommend it.
Oct 17, 2011 Chrissy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved the book, Really connected with it.. But then again I love most of Leland's books..
Sep 12, 2013 Leisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Four stars for the sometimes overwhelmingly exquisite poetry throughout.
Johnn Escobar
Feb 21, 2017 Johnn Escobar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is a work worth reading, just mere curiosity should allow any aspiring writer to read this work at least once.
May 09, 2017 Isobel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
- will write a full review on this later on -

TLDR thoughts; a big part of modern witchcraft history that can't be ignored. Has some beautiful ideas in it; though it is the gospel of the witches, don't take everything in it as gospel.
Aaron Meyer
I've read alot of folks reviews before reading the book and after reading the work myself it just comes to me that alot of people don't really "read" it with a view to understand it. I have alot of areas to cover so I guess I will just jump into the first thing that comes to mind.
There are alot of people who claim that the witchcraft in Aradia is to mean and evil. They need to remember that this is not modern wicca, this is real witchcraft. The type that has been used throughout history and thro
Victoria Haf
últimamente he querido leer de brujería, por las ideas de Silvia Federicci que la quema de brujas en la edad media fue un epistemicidio de conocimiento femenino y herbolaria, siento que quizá leyendo de "stregoneria" pueda encontrar algo de viejos conocimientos de la tierra italiana
Este es un libro corto, me encontré un pdf en internet, y es bastante disperso, hay historias, anécdotas, oraciones, llamamientos, pero lo que más me interesó fueron las notas del autor donde hace referencias históric
May 08, 2012 Molly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read this several times and never seem to read every word. It's one of those strange books that you can pick up repeatedly and always see something new. For that, I think I will continue to re-read "Aradia" again and again.

It's a very small book, but dense in language. The stories are interesting and quite different from what we see in other mythology concerning witchcraft. For clarity (and the option to use invocations in their original language) I very much appreciate Leland giving them i
Apr 25, 2014 Silas rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is clearly important to the history of modern paganism. The cadence and phrasing of the poetry presented here is replicated in many places that I have encountered. The story focuses on the "witch cult" idea that was popular in the early to mid 1900s (and apparently the late 1800s, as well), which tied ideas about witches sabbats common from folklore with the idea of witchcraft being a survival of pre-Christian religion, in this case, the worship of Diana. As folk stories and mythology, ...more
Oya Çetin Kuzum
Aradia Gospel of the Witches 1899 yılında basılmış. Yazar Charles G. Leland çalışmalarını sürdürürken "Maddalena" isimli bir falcı ile tanışmış ve böylelikle İtalyan büyücülüğünü, eski dini ve Tanrıça Diana kültürünü keşfetmiş. Yazara göre anlatılanlar tamamen gerçek. 1886 yılında cadı sanatına dair gizli belgeler içeren bir el yazması olduğunu öğreniyor ve 1897 yılında Maddalena tarafından kendisine bu el yazması ulaştırılıyor. Herodias (Aradia) Cadılar İncili adı altında.
İnanışa göre Aradia İ
Davin Raincloud
I don't see this book being very popular with many pagans. It's revered by 'some' witches, who find inspiration in it's poetic tale. Too many pagans these days are too literal to enjoy what I consider a piece of art.

In Australian slang, it's a bit of creative bullshit. You get out of it what you like.

The trouble with the text is it's not that long, and the author is not that good of a writer.

But people enjoy it as a bit of a heretical indulgence. It's interesting that some of the problems with
Dec 26, 2014 Jediraven rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting. I liked the prose and prayers that it contained. I think that it confused me more than helped me about the lore and which gods and goddesses are which, though. That was the first I read about her brother being named "Lucifer" instead of "Apollo". And from all I had learned, I thought Diana/Artemis was a chaste goddess and didn't have children, but that could just be my ignorance. Also, the rituals seem much simpler than casting circles and using altars like in other Pagan rituals.
Joan DeArtemis
I read this a long time ago, and, I have to admit, I did not understand it. Since then, I have heard some people discount Leland's story... that he got this from an Italian Strega. However, I was doing to some research just recently, and I learned that "Aradia" may be a misspelling of "Herodia", who was the mother of Salome in the New Testament, and who demanded the head of John the Baptist. So, now, my curiosity is peaked, and I want to further research into this.
Anthony  Miller
Dec 26, 2015 Anthony Miller rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A thoughtful read

Through history and folklore, it is quite compelling what has become of Aradia, Diana, and Lucifer. The parallels of scripture, hymns,and incantations, if one has knowledge, is quite interesting. I must add that this book was brought to light by Martin Rombergs music album entitled Witch Mass. Which this text was the primary influence for the beautifully composed choral music.
Oct 29, 2011 Andrew rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
An OK book that I found online as a public domain read..the book is a collection of pagan rites etc connected to the Goddess Diana and its of some interest but ultimately didn't thrill...some of the grammar and spelling etc is terrible but it is readable..i'm not sure if this was in transcribing or whether the piece was initially poor in this respect as there is a part of the book whereby the author bemoans corrections to previous works of his passing on error to the original source material.
Aug 19, 2015 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pagan
A classic for the Witch's bookshelf. While it's authenticity is under debate, Aradia is an essential neopagan text, and a fascinating read. What I found most interesting about this text is the repeated theme of threatening the god or spirit one is petitioning if they don't grant one's request. Recommended reading for anyone interested in traditional witchcraft or the history of the neopagan movement.
Jenee Edwards
May 18, 2015 Jenee Edwards rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Very disappointing. Seems like it was written by a very vindictive person, full of self loathing and hate. If this is what the Cristian church saw as the Wiccans full belief then I can fully understand why the went crazy and became murderous villains.
Alexia Moon
I'm not the biggest fan of Stregheria but, to be honest, I really enjoyed reading this book.

It gave me more awareness to the other paths out there and it made me understand a bit more about Aradia and Diana as deities and how they are worshipped and such.

I liked this book.
Nicole Diamond
If it has one star I liked it a lot
If it has two stars I liked it a lot and would recommend it
If it has three stars I really really liked it a lot
If it has four stars I insist you read it
If it has five stars it was life changing
Mar 28, 2012 Cinnimini rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wiccan
I know lots of people rave about this book... but my 2nd time through I still think, "Its ok". Sure the spells and charms are cool, but I feel like it needs more.. Like there should have been more stories and lore. But its still interesting
I'm not sure exactly what I have read, I was hoping this to be a book that offers historical perspective however it gave me no understanding to the history of the modern Wicca and witchcraft . What I read was a fair potion of witch-lore, mythology and poetry.
Dec 23, 2008 Barry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book....I feel that much of the so called "history" given is at some times suspect, and even hypocritical to modern "witch" groups that acknowledge this work. I did enjoy it, however
Jennifer Damaskos
Mar 25, 2013 Jennifer Damaskos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
it's interesting history of witchcraft I think it staggers a bit too much for me it didn't flow overall think its great background information
Mar 03, 2011 H.K. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very insightful and intriguing book.
Nov 09, 2012 Tepintzin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pagan, esoteric
Kind of hard to have a real "opinion" of one of the classics. Provided source material for many of Gardner's rituals.
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Charles Godfrey Leland (August 15, 1824 – March 20, 1903) was an American humorist and folklorist, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was educated at Princeton University and in Europe.
Leland worked in journalism, travelled extensively, and became interested in folklore and folk linguistics, publishing books and articles on American and European languages and folk traditions. Leland worked in
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“THE CHARM OF THE STONES CONSECRATED TO DIANA To find a stone with a hole in it is a special sign of the favour of Diana, He who does so shall take it in his hand and repeat the following, having observed the ceremony as enjoined: — Scongiurazione della pietra bucata. Una pietra bucata U ho trovato; Ne ringrazio il destin, E k) spirito che su questa via Mi ha portata, Che passa essere il mio bene, E la mia buona fortuna! Mi alzo la mattina al alba, E a passegio me ne vo Nelle valli, monti e campi, La fortuna cercarvo Della ruta e la verbena, Quello so porta fortuna Me lo tengo in senno chiuso £ saperlo nessuno no le deve, £ cosi cio che commendo, " La verbena far ben per me ! Benedica quella strege! Quella fata che mi segna!" Diana fu quella Che mi venne la notte in sogno E mi disse : " Se tu voir tener Le cattive persone da te lontano, Devi tenere sempre ruta con te, Sempre ruta con te e verbena!" Diana, tu che siei la regina Del cielo e della terra e dell* inferno, E siei la prottetrice degli infelici, Dei ladri, degli assassini, e anche Di donne di mali afifari se hai conosciuto, Che non sia stato V indole cattivo Delle persone, tu Diana, Diana li hai fatti tutti felici! Una altra volta ti scongiuro Che tu non abbia ne pace ne bene, Tu possa essere sempre in mezzo alle pene^ Fino che la grazia che io ti chiedo Non mi farai! THE CHARM OF THE STONES Invocation to the Holy-Stone} I have found A holy-stone upon the ground. O Fate! I thank thee for the happy find, Also the spirit who upon this road Hath given it to me; And may it prove to be for my true good And my good fortune I I rise in the morning by the earliest dawn, And I go forth to walk through (pleasant) vales. All in the mountains or the meadows fair, Seeking for luck while onward still I roam, Seeking for rue and vervain scented sweet, Because they bring good fortune unto all. I keep them safely guarded in my bosom, That none may know it—'tis a secret thing. And sacred too, and thus I speak the spell: " O vervain ! ever be a benefit, And may thy blessing be upon the witch Or on the fairy who did give thee to me ! " It was Diana who did come to me, All in the night in a dream, and said to me: " If thou would'st keep all evil folk afar, Then ever keep the vervain and the rue Safely beside thee I" I hole ii . But such a slone is IS really a claim to the ARADIA Great Diana I thou Who art the queen of heaven and of earth, And of the inferna! lands—yea, thou who art Protectress of all men unfortunate, Of thieves and murderers, and c Who lead an evil life, and yet hast known That their nature was not evil, thou, Diana, Hast still conferred on them some joy in life.' Or I may truly at another time So conjure thee that thou shalt have no peace Or happiness, for thou shalt ever be In suffering until thou grantest that Which 1 require in strictest faith from thee! [Here” 0 likes
“TTien shall follow the Conjuration of Diana. Scongiurazione a Diana. You shall make cakes of meal, wine, salt, and honey in the shape of a (crescent or homed) moon, and then put them to bake, and say: Non cuoco ne il pane re il sale, Non cuoco re il vino ne il miele, Cuoco il corpo il sangue e 1' anima, L' anima di Diana, che non possa Avere ne la pace e ne bene, Possa essere sempre in mezzo alle pene Fino che la grazia non mi fari, Che glielo chiesta egliela chiedo di cuore! Se qaesla grazia, o Diana, mi farai, La cena In tua lode in molti la faremo, Mangiaremo, beveremo, Ealleremo, salteremo, Se questa grazia che ti ho chiesta, Se questa grazia tu mi farai, Nel tempo che balliamo, H lume spengnerai, Cosi al 1' amore liberamente la faremo I Conjuration of Diana. I do not bake the bread, nor with it salt, Nor do I cook the honey with the wine; I bake the body and the blood and soul, The soul of (great) Diana, that she shall ARABIA Know neither rest nor peace, and ever be In cruel suffering till she will grant What I request, what I do most desire, I beg it of her from my very heart! And if the grace be granted, O Diana I In honour of thee I will hold this feast. Feast and drain the goblet deep. We will dance and wildly leap, And if thou grant'st the grace which I require, Then when the dance is wildest, all the lamps Shall be extinguished and we'll freely love! And thus shall it be done: all shall sit down to the supper all naked, men and women, and, the feast over, they shall dance, sing, make music, and then love in the darkness, with all the lights extinguished; for it is the Spirit of Diana who extinguishes them, and so they will dance and make music in her praise. And” 0 likes
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