Protection Against Witches: How Ornaments Used To Ward Off Evil Spirits

By Karen Harris
Witch bottles, containers for items to repel evil spirits, were commonplace in 17th and 18th century England. Source: (Wikipedia)

It's mostly reserved for quiet nights following horror movie marathons these days, but most people in 17th- and 18th-century England and the United States truly believed that evil spirits, witches, spells, and sorcery were everyday threats. Just as one would arm themselves against an intruder or inoculate themselves against a disease (you know, if that were an option back then), people looked to magical objects to serve as protection against witches. One of the more common lines of defense was the witch ball or witch bottle. Let's learn about these weird and mystical devices to see how important they were to people living a few centuries ago.