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Buckley Society Magazine Issue Six. A Buckley Pot used in Witchcraft by Eirlys Gruffydd"

January 1981

Buckley Society Magazine Issue Six, January 1981.

A Buckley Pot used in Witchcraft by Eirlys Gruffydd.

p. 42


The Museum of Welsh Antiquities at Bangor houses many strange and wonderful objects. Amongst them is a Buckley earthenware pot measuring about 13 cm high and about the same dimensions across.


It was discovered on 3 October 1871 by a labourer, one Edward Morris, who was employed by the Hon. W.O. Stanley M.P. The man was removing an old earthen bank on Penrhos Bradwen Farm, Penrhos, Holyhead, when he found it. Its mouth was covered by a slate on which was scratched (on both sides) in crude letters 'NANNY ROBERTS'. Inside the pot were the bones of a frog, together with its dried skin, which was pierced by about forty pins.


There can be no doubt that this pot and its gruesome contents were used to curse the unfortunate Nanny Roberts. This method of bewitching someone was often practised by witches in nineteenth-century Wales. A live frog was identified with the person to be cursed, pierced with pins, and entombed in the pot. As the frog lingered and died, so did the bewitched person. The curse could only be lifted if the pot was found and the frog released In the case of Nanny Roberts, this was not so, as the pot had been too well-hidden in the earthen bank. Little did the Buckley potter who made this pipkin realise for what dubious purpose it would be used.




Author: Gruffydd, Eirlys


Year = 1981

Month = January

Event = Other

Object = Containers

Work = Light Industry

Extra = Pre 1900

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