Ameth

Ameth: The Life and Times of Doreen Valiente by Jonathan Tapsell, forthcoming from Avalonia Books, may be of interest.

Jonathan Tapsell Ameth from Avalonia Books

This study of the life of the Witch, Priestess and Author Doreen Valiente, who is sometimes named as the ‘Mother of Modern Pagan Witchcraft’ presents a wonderful collection of information and insights into her life and work. ‘AMETH’ was Doreen Valiente’s witch name, the author talks about this in the book writing that during Doreen’s initiation as a Witch by Gerald Gardner, she was given the name:

‘At this rite Gardner and Dafo gave their new initiate a secret Witch-name known only to those within the Craft. Doreen was from then on to be known as — Ameth. Gardner is likely to have said these words taken from his own Book of Shadows: “Hear, ye Mighty Ones, (Ameth) hath been consecrated Priestess and Witch of the Gods.” before asking the Gods to depart. Ameth true to her secret oaths of the Old Religion would neither disclose to either her husband or mother that she was now a fully-fledged Witch.’

‘As the ceremony progressed the newly initiated Witch, Doreen, would have been anointed, given wine from a chalice, gently scourged for purification and eventually untied and the blindfold taken away. At its conclusion she would have been presented with an athame (a witch’s knife), a wand to invoke spirits, a white handled knife, a scourge and a censor for incense. Another magical artefact, belonging to the Witch, was the cords used to bind her during the ceremony. One cord measured nine feet long and was to be used to make magical circles and another cord was used for spells. She was now a member of the coven and only another two degrees stood between her and the title of High Priestess in the art magical.’