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The Elf, the Witch and the Devil

German folk background for images and portrayals

Oxford's Cyril Edwards tonight looks at Germanic sources for elves, witches and the Devil, asking 'What, in Germanic history, was meant when one said elf? Witch? Devil?' He will lead us through descriptions of these three creatures, moving backwards in time. He will start with the eighteenth-century German literary sources (Goethe, Tieck), go back through the witch-trials (Germany, Scotland), then back further into medieval German, and then further back still to Old Norse (Snorri Sturlusson, of course). Finally he will show us actual elf and witch charms of Anglo-Saxon England. There will be lots of handouts and readings - Cyril Edwards is a leading Germanist, who is at St Peter's College, Oxford. His presentations are always interactive, and he is warm and friendly. Questions and open discussion will follow.

This talk will be invaluable to people studying any number of subjects: German culture, the modern Northern Tradition, and the development of folk magic in the British Isles.


Dr Cyril Edwards | talks


Date and Time:

12 June 2008 at 7:15 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



Treadwell's Books
33 Store Street
020 7419 8507

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Available from:

Treadwells Books, in advance, as we often sell out.

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