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If you're on this page, then either two things have happened; first, you're already a fan of the show and have come for new episodes, information, or to contact me. If so, welcome back! Scroll down to find episodes of the History of Witchcraft, or look to the top of the page for information to contact me.

The second reason you might be here is that you've stumbled across a link in a recommendation and are wondering what on earth this is all about. Simply put, this is the history podcast on all things magical, where we examine notable beliefs in witchcraft or the supernatural, and how these beliefs sometimes let to bloodshed. Fun stuff! If you want to know more, click 'About' at the top of the page!

Feb 11, 2018

In today's episode, we cover the works of William Shakespeare, one of the greatest literary figures in English history. Specifically, we look at the supernatural elements in a number of his plays, from Henry IV and Richard III, to The Tempest and Macbeth. Straddling the reigns of Elizabeth and James, Shakespeare's career provides a window into how magic and witchcraft may have been seen in English culture.

This episode primarily makes use of the following sources:

  • Herrington, H. W., ‘Witchcraft and Magic in Elizabethan Drama’, in The Journal of American Folklore, 32, 126, (1919)
  • Stanhill, Gerald., ‘Shakespeare’s Tempest, witchcraft and the Little Ice Age’, Weather, 71, iv, 100-102
  • Holmes, R., Witchcraft in British History (1974)
  • The plays of Shakespeare

A full bibliography can be found on the website.