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Luna Ignis Elder Keppen with arrow point
This keppen is approximately 4 inches in length.
Keppens are very traditional English cottage witchcraft. Wands have a very ceremonial magick history, many of the old grimoires have instructions for cutting and making wands. Traditional cottage witches in the west of England used “keppens” instead. They are basically a mini or pocket wand. The type of wood used lends power to the spell based on Ogham tree lore… So Oak for success, blackthorn for cursing, birch for healing, apple for love, alder for protection and so on. Easily concealed in the hand, pocket or purse they are highly portable and can be used discretely even in public or the workplace!
Sacred to the Moon and therefore ALL Luna Goddesses! The perfect choice for witches and wiccans that work with the moon and Luna goddesses! It is also one of the most sacred of the “Nine sacred woods of wicca” and Elder is the only one that must never be burned! Known as the tree of life and death, its berries are poisonous until cooked, but a huge source of nutrients and vitamins. Old English Lore says you MUST ask an Elder tree’s permission before cutting it lest you be cursed! Paul always recites this rhyme before respectfully cutting and blessing any Elder Tree!
The elder is a small but bountiful tree, covered with edible fragrant blossoms in summer and juicy purple berries in autumn which country people have used for centuries in jams, jellies, medicinal syrups and wine. Its hollow branches have proved useful for all manner of pipes and bellows; in fact, its name probably originates with the Anglo-Saxon ‘eller’, meaning a kindler of fire. In Ireland, elder was a sacred tree, and it was forbidden to break even one twig.
Like the willow, it seems to have strong feminine associations. In Denmark, peasants would not cut down an elder for fear of Hyldemor, the Elder-mother, who dwelt in its trunk. This belief is also found in Eastern England. In Lincolnshire until quite recently, it was important to ask permission of the ‘Old Lady’ or ‘Old Girl’. The correct way to approach the tree was to say: ‘Old Woman, give me some of thy wood and I will give thee some of mine when I grow into a tree’. If this procedure was not adopted, ill-luck could befall. Earlier this century, a writer visited the mother of a sick baby, the mother explained:
It were all along of my maister’s thick ‘ead. It were in this ‘ow: t’rocker comed off t’cradle, and he hadn’t no more gumption than to mak’ a new ‘un out on illerwood (elder wood) without axing the Old Lady’s leave, and in course she didn’t like that, and she came and pinched the wean (baby) that outrageous he were a’most black in t’ face; but I bashed un off, and putten an eshen (ashen) on, and the wean is gallus (well?) as owt agin.
Unfortunately, the Elder-Mother, who had probably once been a powerful female figure venerated for the healing properties of her tree, became feared as a witch in Christian times. In Ireland, witches were thought to use elder boughs as magic horses, while in England the crooked-branched tree was thought to be the form of a bent old witch, who would bleed if she were cut.
A folk-tale about an elder-tree witch from Somerset is worth repeating here. It tells of a farmer who discovered his cows were being milked by a witch disguised as an elder-tree. The farmer loaded his gun with a silver bullet to shoot her, but missed, and the witch chased him back to his cottage. He hurtled in through the front door and his wife shot the iron bolt, but the farmer’s coat-tails were caught in the door and he struggled pathetically there while the witch prowled around outside!
Each of Paul's wands are unique. There is no plan beforehand, the wand is allowed to manifest as it wills, Paul just helps it along.
Wood is of course a natural product. Paul works with the branch, interesting boles, cracks, are incorporated and left by design. Paul also never removes all the bark, as like skin it comes in many layers and some of the lower layers have their own gorgeous color and details!
Oiled with one of our award winning Luna Ignis brand range of anointing oils to protect the wood and make the grain pop!
Long before Paul was ever a blacksmith he carved and was a wandsmith. Before even Artes And Craft opened as a witchcraft store, Paul was making wands and selling them at pagan festivals and gifting them to friends. Being English, Paul would often cut wood when visiting England and return to the USA with some of the most famous classical Celtic magick woods of Ogham lore. In fact, this was one of the founding principles of Artes And Craft, was to bring beautiful ritual tools and goodies from the old world to pagans in the new world. Paul loves crafting heirloom quality unique ritual tools for pagans, druids, ceremonial magicians, Traditional witchcraft and wicca.