NO WIND, NO WAVES by Enora Boivin

NO WIND, NO WAVES by Enora Boivin

This piece was written by Enora, our lovely intern from Brittany in France.  She has been with us for nearly two weeks now and has helped out in all sorts of ways.  The past couple of days, she has been scanning archive documents from the Cecil Williamson object label collection.  She has written this piece about one of the cards she has just uploaded onto our archive catalogue.

Have you ever wished you could control the weather? Well, throughout the centuries, people believed that witches had this power. To be more precise, the common belief was that witches living on the coast could control the weather thanks to ropes tied of three knots. One of those ropes is on display in the Sea Witchcraft section of the Museum.

You can read more information below thanks to a card written by Cecil Williamson, the founder of the museum, explaining that the witches were indeed selling the wind to sailors in Devon and Cornwall.

This card is one of many you can read on the collection section of our website


In the time of the witch trials, a great number of witches were believed to be guilty of the creation of storms and by extension, responsible for the wreaking of ships.


Above, a reproduction of an old woodcut showing a witch selling the wind (in a knotted rope) to sailors.  It seems that a lot of mariners bought the precious rope to protect them and lead them to the land.

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