Posted by ESC on December 27, 2001
In Reply to: Correction posted by Bruce Kahl on December 27, 2001
: : : I see that someone asked before for the meaning of this phrase - I understand the meaning, but does anyone know the origin of "colder than a witches tit"
: : The simple explanation
is that "colder than a witch's tit" is just a vivid metaphor, like "hotter than
the hinges of hell." Since a
: : witch is in league with Satan, presumably she has no maternal feelings. Thus the medium by which she would suckle a child is,
: : well, cold as a witch's tit.
: : But there's some history behind
this wisecrack. A witch's tit (or witch's teat, to use the older spelling) supposedly
left a marking
: : that witch hunters and courts would look for on the body of an accused person. Supposedly, witches would suckle their
: : familiars, and sometimes the Devil himself, from this "unholy" body part. To find these marks, as well as insensitive spots on the
: : skin called devil's marks--caused by the Devil's claws or teeth--the suspects were stripped, shaven, then closely examined for
: : any blemishes, moles, or even scars that could be labeled as diabolical. To find marks invisible to the eye, the examiner would
: : poke the victim inch by inch with a blunt needle (called a bodkin) until they found a spot that didn't feel pain or bled. Discovery
: : of these marks or spots--one supposes they would be considered cold since they were a sign of communion with the
: : Devil--would be "proof" of the person's dealings with Scratch, so they would be shown in full court before the execution.
: One of my more politically correct offspring has just finished chastising me for being, in her words, "insensitive, boorish and just plain dumb" for associating witches with Satan.
: Witchcraft (Wicca Craeft), is also called Wicca, or alternatively, The Craft. This previously underground religion has much to teach every human about survival and about the ethical use of natural innate powers.
: Satan, or "the Devil," is a concept not to be found outside of Judeo-Christianity, Islam, and Zoroastrianism. A person must be working through the paradigm of a Holy Bible in order to believe in Satan. He is not a part of Native American religions, Shinto, Buddhism, Animism or (of course) Wicca.
: So a portion of my previous post should read "Since SOME PEOPLE BELIEVE a witch is in league with Satan....".
: Thank You, Janice
Quite right. By the way, witches are the victims of inflation just like everyone else. I was looking at a holiday catalog and found a witch's broom going for $69.99.