Are You a Witch? A Handy Halloween Checklist

Illustration for article titled Are You a Witch? A Handy Halloween Checklist

Embarrassingly not-long ago, human beings in Europe (and even here, in Amurrica) were fond of rounding up people who they thought might be secretly magical and then setting them on fire, because that’s what God wanted them to do or something. Accusations of witchcraft ended the lives of thousands of people. Would you have been one of them?

The BBC put together a helpful questionnaire to help you determine whether or not your current lifestyle would have given off a “burn me” vibe to paranoid lunatics of old. Here are the warning signs:

  • Being a lady (80% of people executed for witchcraft were women)
  • Owning pets (People in olden times believed that witches often had animal friends that would assist them in performing magic)
  • Living alone (Everyone knows that without a mooring penis of reason, women go craaaaaazy)
  • Asking for charity (Beggars were often accused of witchery, so take that Kickstarter down before you’re hanged, ye cunning twee busker!)
  • Being hated by your neighbors (they’re probably gonna accuse you of witchcraft, so better get apologetic cookie baking, you loud-sex-having strumpet)
  • Angrily muttering things under your breath or getting really mad at people (This is you saying spells. So no more angrily flipping off dudes who whistle at you from cars — that shit could get you executed!)
  • Giving Tarot readings/consulting astrology (The Bible is the only Tarot you need.)
  • Occasionally taking or distributing herbal remedies (The Bible is the only medicine you need)
  • Possessing a vivid imagination (According to the BBC, some accused of witchcraft would actually go along with the crazy shit people were saying about them. Being on trial for witchcraft is no time for sarcasm. Hyperbole withers here.)

I took the quiz, and apparently I wouldn’t fare very well in the Middle Ages, or pre-independence America:

By answering ‘yes' to the majority of our questions, it's clear that an accusation of witchcraft against you would have been highly likely. Such an allegation would have seen you subjected to a number of ‘witch tests', some of which may have involved ‘informal' torture such as ‘witch pricking' (the method of piercing the skin to find areas of flesh that do not bleed). If you lived in Scotland where the use of torture was once permitted, you may have been subjected to sleep deprivation, thumbscrews and leg crushers until you confessed. Once a confession was made, it would have been left up to the courts to sentence you.

So, yes, I’d be accused of witchcraft, but then again, so would a Cathy cartoon.


Take the quiz yourself here.

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