Magic & Witchcraft in Ancient Greece & Rome – Prof. Marguerite Johnson – 7 Lecture Course

In this special seven-part series, Marguerite Johnson takes us on a magical mystery tour of magic and witchcraft in ancient Greece and Rome, with a sprinkling of Egyptian occult practices. Each lecture introduces a particular type of magic; is extensively illustrated with archaeological evidence; features excerpts from ancient writing; and includes a fascinating reading list for those interested in pursuing the topics in more detail.

Ghosts in Antiquity and in Magic: April 30th – Lecture II

Ghosts played a major role in the belief system of the ancient Greeks and Romans. They featured in magic, helping spell-casters to ensure their curses were enacted and successful. They haunted all sorts of places – from battlefields to houses and the crossroads – sometimes to such an extent that professional magicians (and sometimes priests) were called upon to exorcise them. We end this lecture with some ancient ghost stories.   

For a peak preview of some of the topics we’ll be looking at, read Evelien Bracke’s ‘How the ancient world invoked the dead to help the living’, The Conversation, October 28, 2016: https://theconversation.com/how-the-ancient-world-invoked-the-dead-to-help-the-living-67519 

You may also like Kate Murphy’s ‘Secrets of Ancient Magic’, Expedition Magazine 58.1 (2016): http://www.penn.museum/sites/expedition/?p=23548 

The Greek Stoic Philosopher Athenodorus Rents a Haunted House. Henry Justice Ford, c. 1900. 

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

Apr 30th 2023 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

£6 - £10 & By Donation

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