PDF Daughters of Merlin: The World of Men

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Before he got there, he was visited by the messenger god, Hermes , who told him how to defeat the seductive Circe. The lovely Circe, who may or may not have borne Odysseus a couple of sons, gave him directions that sent him all over the place, including on a side quest to the Underworld.

The story of the Bell Witch, for instance, takes place during the s in Tennessee. To make matters even worse, young Betsy Bell started to experience physical encounters with a specter, claiming it had slapped her and pulled her hair. Although he originally told the family to keep things quiet, Bell finally confided in a neighbor, who brought in a party led by none other than local general Andrew Jackson. Morgan has become known as a classic seductress, who lures men in with her witchy wiles, and then causes all kinds of supernatural shenanigans. Unfortunately, Guinevere found out and put an end to the affair, so Morgan exacted her revenge by busting Guinevere, who was fooling around with Sir Lancelot.

At the same time, she became a sexually aggressive woman who had many lovers, including the famous Merlin. However, her love of Lancelot was unrequited. As we see in the story of Odysseus and Circe, Greek mythology is filled with witches.

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Medea was said to be of divine descent, and was the niece of the aforementioned Circe. Born with the gift of prophecy, Medea was able to warn Jason about the dangers that lay before him in his quest. After he obtained the Fleece, she took off with him on the Argo , and they lived happily ever after Then, as often happens in Greek myth, Jason found himself another woman, and cast Medea aside for Glauce, the daughter of the Corinthian king, Creon.

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Not one to take rejection well, Medea sent Glauce a lovely golden gown covered in poison, which led to the death of both the princess and her father, the king. Just to show Jason she was good and angry, Medea killed two of the others herself, leaving only a son, Thessalus, to survive. Medea then fled Corinth on a golden chariot sent by her grandfather, Helios, the sun god. In Russian folktales, Baba Yaga is an old witch who can be either fearsome and scary or the heroine of a tale—and sometimes she manages to be both. Described as having teeth of iron and a frightfully long nose, Baba Yaga lives in a hut on the edge of the forest, which can move around on its own and is depicted as having legs like a chicken.

Baba Yaga does not, unlike many traditional folkloric witches, fly about on a broomstick.

Instead, she rides around in a giant mortar, which she pushes along with an equally large pestle, rowing it almost like a boat. She sweeps the tracks away from behind her with a broom made of silver birch.

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In general, no one ever knows whether Baba Yaga will help or hinder those who seek her out. Often, bad people get their just desserts through her actions, but it is not so much that she wishes to rescue the good as it is that evil brings its own consequences, and Baba Yaga is simply there to see these punishments meted out. In Italy, the legend of La Befana is popularly told around the time of the Epiphany. What does a Catholic holiday have to do with modern paganism? Well, La Befana happens to be a witch.

Wherefore, I pray thee to perform thy will in this affair, bearing in thy heart the consideration that the child is the most precious inheritance which I shall leave unto this land. All this, as was said, Uther-Pendragon spake with great calmness and equanimity of spirit. And Merlin did as he had advised, and he and Sir Ulfius conveyed the child away by night, and no one but they wist whither the babe had been taken. And shortly afterward Uther-Pendragon was seized with the sickness as Merlin had foretold, and he died exactly as Merlin had feared that he would die; wherefore it was very well that the child had been taken to a place of safety.

And after Uther-Pendragon had departed from this life, it was like-wise as Merlin had feared, for all the realm fell into great disorder. For each lesser king contended against his fellow for overlordship, and wicked knights and barons harried the highways as they listed and there levied toll with great cruelty upon helpless wayfarers. For some such travellers they took prisoners and held for ransom, whiles others they slew because they had no ransom to pay. So it was a very common sight to see a dead man lying by the roadside, if you should venture to make a journey upon some business or other.

Thus it befell that, after awhile, all that dolorous land groaned with the trouble that lay upon it.

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Canst thou not find some means to heal the distractions of this woeful realm? Bend thou thy wisdom to this matter and choose thou a king who shall be a fit overlord for us, so that we may enjoy happiness of life once more as we did in the days of Uther-Pendragon. And he shall bring order and peace where is now disorder and war. Moreover, I may tell you that this King shall be of Uther-Pendragon's own full blood-royal.

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But in this spirit of prophecy canst thou not foretell when this King is to come? And canst thou tell how we shall know him when he appeareth amongst us? For many lesser kings there are who would fain be overlord of this land, and many such there are who deem themselves fit to rule over all the others.

How then shall we know the real King from those who may proclaim themselves to be the rightful king? So Merlin caused by magic that a huge marble stone, four square, should suddenly appear in an open place before the cathedral door.

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And upon this block of marble he caused it to be that there should stand an anvil and into the anvil he caused it that there should be thrust a great naked sword midway deep of the blade. And this sword was the most wonderful that any man had ever seen, for the blade was of blue steel and extraordinarily bright and glistering. And the hilt was of gold, chased and carved with marvellous cunning, and inlaid with a great number of precious stones, so that it shone with wonderful brightness in the sunlight.

And about the sword were written these words in letters of gold So a great many people came and gazed upon that sword and marvelled at it exceedingly, for its like had never before been beheld upon the earth.