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Glossary of Wiccan, Neo-Pagan and Occult Terminology

DUNCAN, Helen

The medium who was indicted and imprisoned for nine months in 1944 on charges of having 'transgressed the security laws when she foretold the loss of one of His Majesty's ships before the fact was made public'.

The case has been erroneously cited as the last occasion when an individual was sentenced under the 1736 Witchcraft Act, an impossibility since legislation of that year removed the crime of Witchcraft from the English statute books.   Mrs Duncan was prosecuted under legislation which replaced the various Witchcraft Acts and which was based on the assumption that the phenomenon of witchcraft did not exist.


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PLEASE NOTE:
One of the major problems with 'defining' Paganism and/or its beliefs and practices is that it is an 'organic' movement, in that it is undergoing constant change and re-evaluation from within, and as such any 'one-size-fits-all' approach to understanding Paganism will be found wanting.

Due to the very 'organic' nature of Paganism, and the many differing Paths and Traditions within it, in many cases no one definition may be universally accepted by all Pagans.   Therefore, where such cases of possible conflicting and/or contradictory meanings of certain terms occur I have endevoured to give not only the generally accepted meaning, but also any major 'variations' in belief and/or practice.

Christians who believe this difference in meaning of certain key terms, beliefs and practices to be unique to Paganism need to remember that such conflicts also arise within the Body of Christ - the Church.   Take for instance the differing practices amongst Christians concerning Baptism and the different attitudes towards women in the clergy.

- Jean-Luc



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