Goat of Mendes Mask

Goat of Mendes Mask

In 1968, Arnold and Patricia Crowther went to their local cinema to see the newly released, The Devil Rides Out, made by Hammer Films and based on the 1934 novel of the same name by Dennis Wheatley. 

A year or so later Arnold and Patricia were invited to a fancy dress party. Arnold was a talented maker of props and puppets and was inspired to create a mask based on the figure of the Goat of Mendes, which appears in the film at a climatic moment during a Sabbat on the Eve of Beltane. The mask was created using papier-mâché and fake fur and soon afterwards became woven into the ritual practises of their Gardnerian coven.
During one of Simon’s trips up to Sheffield to meet Patricia, the mask was produced and offered to the museum. We were of course delighted and no sooner had it arrived in Boscastle, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, asked if they could loan the mask for their exhibition, ‘You Say You Want a Revolution’, which has since travelled to New York and our other items are now in Melbourne, apart from the mask.
Items such as these are a rare find, given their fragility and we are delighted that the mask has been seen by so many people but we felt it was time for it to return to the museum to take pride of place in our last gallery space on Modern Magic. 

MWM Objects on loan – London & Melbourne

MWM Objects on loan – London & Melbourne

Objects on Loan

Objects from the museums collection are continuing to fascinate people across the world with items currently on show in London and Melbourne. 

At the Wellcome Collection, in an exhibition entitled, ‘Smoke and Mirrors: The Psychology of Magic’, we have one of our Ouija boards on show that Simon found some years ago. This is alongside the head of the gorilla costume worn by Derren Brown, Harry Houdini’s ‘Bell Box’, Tommy Cooper’s fez, and Paul Daniels’s sawing-in-half box. 

Show runs 11 April 2019—15 September 2019

Then on the other side of the world is the ongoing Victoria and Albert Museum exhibition, ‘You Say You Want a Revolution’, currently at the Melbourne Museum. Here we have a sword used by Alex Sanders, a robe worn by Ralph Harvey of the Temple of Artemis and a Goat Head stick. 

Show runs 27th April – 25th August 2019

New museum loans

Following on from last year, we have items appearing in several exhibitions. The first to open will be in London at the Wellcome Collection, in an exhibition entitled, ‘Smoke and …


Museum History

We received this nostalgic image via our Facebook page. It shows Cecil Williamson’s original painting of a witch on her broomstick which has now been reproduced on the exterior of …


New window for a new season

Getting ready for the new season always involves thinking about the museum window. This year, Simon and Marti, (it was Marti who created the Stag’s head which graced the window …


May Conference Call For Papers

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Qualified First Aid Museum Team!

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Candlelit Evening for 2019

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Boscastle Wassail

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Dark Gathering – Part 1

We were delighted to read the first part of Cassandra’s report on this years spectacular Dark Gathering event.  Dark Gathering 2018 – Part One


Winter Opening dates

The Museum is now closed but as of the last few years, we will be opening before and after Christmas from 12 noon and closing at 4pm. Here are the …


Wood blocks from 1720

New Acquisition

We have been lucky to recently acquire these two incredibly rare woodblocks, originally used to illustrate The History of Witches and Wizards, 1720. John Crabb, author of Graven Images: The …

See the full historical diary archive here