Reply To: Trouble in Druidville-Star tree talks some religious craic about druidry

The British Druid Order Forums BDO Public Forum Trouble in Druidville-Star tree talks some religious craic about druidry Reply To: Trouble in Druidville-Star tree talks some religious craic about druidry


To be honest, I somehow doubt that someone like William Stukeley, who was a fellow of the Royal Society, a friend of Isaac Newton and someone who, despite inherited family financial problems, had paid for his own study at Cambridge University as well as being qualified in law and medicine and later becoming an Anglican clergyman was in it for the money. These were English country “gentleman” antiquaries of the late 17th and early 18th centuries – quasi-aristocracy, whatever their merits as antiquarians or archaeologists, I doubt they were in any way doing it for the money or worried about being accused of witchcraft – especially given the very strong Christian and philosophical – in very little sense “pagan” -flavour of their endeavours.

Further, I think there was a real chance that Iolo could have been charged with witchcraft or even local gangs could have gotten him.

I doubt it. The last executions for witchcraft in England were in 1716 and in Scotland in 1727. The Witchcraft Act (1735), ironic as it may seem, basically got rid of witchcraft as some kind of “supernatural” offense and viewed it more as a form of fraud. Given that Iolo was born in 1747, with some form of druid revival already underway, I think it’s pretty unlikely that he would have been charged with witchcraft. I mean, on what grounds would he have been anyway? Bear in mind that the Witchcraft Act (1735) was only repealed in 1951 and so one might assume that had their been any will to charge him or sufficient grounds, it would have occurred – he was not really a member of the “establishment” either.

With regard to Iolo’s use of laudanum, not particularly atypical at the time, one would have to find some evidence of his having produced his notorious works “under the influence”, so to speak, in order to substantiate the claim, otherwise it remains pure conjecture however likely it may or may not seem – you can’t condemn someone on purely circumstantial evidence. Furthermore, I believe that Iolo used laudanum as a painkiller and relief for asthma, as was widely and legally done at the time – he would have purchased it at a pharmacy over the counter – so I don’t think it’s fair to portray him as some kind of delinquent and I would be hasty about making sweeping generalisations and judgements about people in any regard.

But do you really think that it would be good to have satan worshiping druids.

Well, to be quite honest I’ve never met one nor have I ever heard of one, and I don’t see how the various philosophies could be compatible.

I am familiar with the Wiccan Rede, but I don’t see why there is the need for any Druid’s Rede to be honest. Wicca is Wicca and druidism is druidism. I think a fundamental difference between the two being that most Wiccans, at least the ones I know, would consider Wicca to be their religion – with a capital R, whereas druidism is (at least to many) more of a nature-based spiritual philosophy; this is not to say that it is not a religion or a faith to some, but that by doesn’t mean it has to be one for all.