Ancient Pagan Werewolf Cults and Their influence on the ‘witch cults’ of Medieval Europe

From the 40,000 year old image of a hunting werewolf cave painting to the modern revival of Pagan werewolf magick, shapeshifting and specifically werewolfery, has been an important though often overlooked part of Western Pagan thought and practice. This presentation begins with documented prehistoric werewolf cults and Pagan werewolf shape shifting practices and then follows classical historians such as Herodotus and Livy and their first hand observations of werewolf ritual shapeshifting practices within the primal religious traditions and practices of ancient Greece, Rome, Scythia, among others.

The influence of these deep-seated animistic ‘shamanic’ practices clearly influenced the Pagan survivals in Europe post- Rome and a surprising percentage of ‘witches’ that were persecuted and executed by the Church were accused of being witches and werewolves. The atrocious witchcraft trial documents give clear indications that shapeshifting ‘werewolf’ practices were part of these small Pagan cults as well as later werewolf cult survivals like the Benandanti cult, sometimes called the ‘Wolves of God,’ as well as werewolf warrior cults in Ireland, Scotland and other Celtic countries where even today werewolves (like the Wulvers) are still looked upon favorably.

Note: Full lecture notes, a bibliography and online resources will be provided on my blog at at the time of the presentation.

Speaker Bio:

Denny Sargent – A Seattle writer, artist and university instructor whose extensive global travels and esoteric studies informed the backbone to numerous published books. Involved for decades with numerous esoteric traditions, the author has published works on Alternative Religions, Hermetic Magick, Taoism, Animism, Shinto and Tantra. Published books include: Global Ritualism, The Tao of Birth Days, Your Guardian Angel And You, Clean Sweep, The Book of the Horned One, Naga Magick, Dancing With Spirits, Werewolf Magick. He regularly presents lively online workshops and lectures and previously hosted at conventions and gatherings. He teaches university classes on Linguistics, Methodology and Pedagogy in TESOL, is an artist and has a dog named Faunus. He is very eclectic.

Curated and Hosted by Dr Amy Hale

Dr. Amy Hale is an Atlanta-based anthropologist and folklorist writing about esoteric history, art, culture, women and Cornwall in various combinations. Her biography of Ithell Colquhoun, Genius of the Fern Loved Gully, is available from Strange Attractor Press, and she is also the editor of the forthcoming collection Essays on Women in Western Esotericism: Beyond Seeresses and Sea Priestesses from Palgrave Macmillan. Other writings can be found at her Medium site and her website

don’t worry if you miss it – we will send you a recording valid for two weeks the next day