Doreen Valiente Witch

Doreen Valiente Witch

by Philip Heselton


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Heralded as one of the greatest figures in the history of modern witchcraft, Doreen Valiente made an unparalleled contribution to contemporary spiritual practice. This book tells her fascinating story, from her earliest encounters with the Craft to her work with Gerald Gardner and her emergence as one of the foremost thinkers in the revival of Paganism and witchcraft. Revealing previously unknown details drawn from first-hand testimony and her personal papers, Doreen Valiente Witch reveals how Valiente's singular vision captivated millions of modern witches and Pagans around the world.

Published in association with the Centre for Pagan Studies and the Doreen Valiente Foundation.


"Doreen Valiente is the mother of the modern witchcraft movement."—Christopher Penczak, bestselling author of The Inner Temple of Witchcraft

"Doreen Valiente is a shining star, a heroine, and role model for the witchcraft community."—Judika Illes, author of Encyclopedia of Witchcraft

"Doreen Valiente has been called the mother of modern witchcraft and that is no exaggeration. She helped open the path that many of us walk some variation of today, and led the way with a grace and strength we could all hope to emulate."—Deborah Blake, author of Everyday Witchcraft

"I am thrilled to see at last a well-researched biography of Doreen Valiente...This is a must read for the historical and personal perspective on the modern adaptations of the Old Religion."—Ann Moura, author of the Green Witch series

"Doreen Valiente was a seminal influence on the modern magical world. Her lasting contributions to our community are both valuable and vast."—Tess Whitehurst, author of Holistic Magic

"An amazing story of a strong and powerful-minded woman who truly took her own spirituality by the reigns...The best way to describe this book is that it is not just a biography, but it is a public service and a true gift to the Craft community."—The Wild Hunt

"It is a wonderful read...Philip Heselton writes beautifully and has researched with his usual care...Above all, he paints Doreen to the life, with accuracy and affection."—Ronald Hutton, Professor of History, University of Bristol

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780738751771
Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide, LTD.
Publication date: 06/08/2016
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 756,166
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Philip Heselton is one of the world's leading authorities on the roots of Wicca, witchcraft, and neo-paganism. He's the author of the acclaimed two-volume biography of Gerald Gardner, Witchfather, as well as Wiccan Roots and Gerald Gardner and the Cauldron of Inspiration. He lives in the UK.

Table of Contents

Illustrations viii

Picture Credits x

Authors Acknowledgements x

Introduction John Belham-Payne xii

Foreword xv

1 From the Land of the Giant and the Forest 1

2 Child of the Goat-God 13

3 Glimpses through the Shadows (or What Doreen did during the War) 39

4 Bournemouth: Gateway to the Occult 55

5 Doreen meets Gerald Gardner and becomes a Witch 67

6 Gerald's 'Myopic Stalky Nymph' 77

7 A Ripe Seed-Pod 93

8 Sussex: the county where witchcraft lives! 105

9 The Psychologist and the Ancient Head 115

10 Magic on the Downs 127

11 A United Nations of the Craft 139

12 A Strange Interlude 153

13 Lines: on Land and Paper 165

14 "Who Initiated the First Witch?": A Personal Manifesto 185

15 Anointed by the Poetic Muse 201

16 Record of a Friendship 223

17 Lighting the Shadows and Searching for Dorothy 233

18 Correspondence, Visitors, and Friends in High Places 247

19 Literary Adventures 257

20 A Cottage with Roses round the Door? 271

21 Towards the Summerlands 295

Endword: The Spirit and the Land 311

Appendix I Doreen as I knew her - some personal reflections John Belham-Payne 315

Appendix II Foundation - The Legacy of Doreen Valiente Ashley Mortimer 327

Appendix III Doreen Valiente - Chronology 335

Appendix IV Doreen Valiente - Bibliography 338

Appendix V General Bibliography 340

Index 343

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