2995 – Hedgehog Charm: Souvenir

Physical description:
Small silver-coloured metal hedgehog. Sold as a charm by William Henry Paynter at his Cornish Museum at East Looe. Still attached to its backing card.
Museum classification:
Spells and Charms
40 x 30 x 10
The hedgehog is still inside the plastic bag attaching it to its backing card, and it is difficult to make out its details or its condition because the bag is still full of dried mud from the 2004 flood. The backing card (which is water-damaged) reads, "A Piece of Cornish History. No. 16. THE WITCH HEDGEHOG. The hedgehog was one of the animals witches turned themselves into, radiating their powers into non-believers through the spine tips of their bodies, giving them good fortune and luck.But it was only a trick to get them to succumb to the witches' powers when the moon was on its last quarter to remove evil spells. This is still a very strong belief in Cornwall to this very day." This charm was probably specially made for the witchcraft-researcher William Henry Paynter for sale at his museum at East Looe, which he opened in 1959.