British Satanism In The Early To Mid 20th Century?

Does anyone know any good resources, ideally books or websites, that would give me some idea of the Satanism/black magick scene in the UK from around 1910 to 1960, 1970-ish?

I have a blood relative (deceased) who was an old-school master of the Black Arts and apart from reading Dennis Wheatley’s novels, I’m entirely unfamiliar with the whole scene: my “Uncle” (the actual relationship’s a bit more distant) was close to being a contemporary of Crowley’s but never met him, though he did briefly meet LaVey when he travelled to the USA.

He was (and is) right into dark stuff, not the lighter tones of theosophy or spiritualism, though he was familiar with that.

Obviously I’m talking to him about this, but factual information can be difficult to receive through these routes and also I’d quite like to do the work myself of studying and not just bug him with pretty basic questions - he lived a very long, happy and successful life against the odds and I respect him more, the more I learn about him.

So far he’s told me he didn’t practice evocation of specific demons (such as Belial) - instead he called up The Master (his term) and committed the allocation of duties to him, and that he had a close-knit circle or coven he sometimes did events with, but most of his summonings were done alone…

No-one I’ve contacted for information has the faintest idea he was involved in this and I would never have guessed, except he contacted me several times through dreams, until the penny dropped and I deliberately called him up…

So anyway, if anyone knows any good biographies or books about British black magick etc., anything about what was going on that era, please let me know so I can track it down and hopefully make Uncle happy, and carry on his traditions in some way! :slight_smile:

I want to try and make the next Solstice special for him if I can, and maybe do a ritual together, some kind of dark work…


Pre-lavey a man named Charles Pace in Glasgow Scottland led a Luciferian / Egyptian occult lodge.

Sources on European black arts, specifically english are hard to pin point due to the secrecy required to survive persecution. Perhaps inquistion records, or folk legends of Satanic covens may be worth looking into.

Also perhaps, the Black Pullet? If I come into anything related I’ll post it here.

That gives me something to start researching, thanks!

This was 20th century so there wasn’t too much persecution, but obviously you didn’t exactly put it on your resumé either… :slight_smile:

I just had a rather scary manifestation and chill wind (physically tangible) emanating in one of the few remaining bits of our Temple/bedroom not yet allocated to a spirit, this was the Dark Master that Uncle worked with, it looks like we’re on for an interesting new ride this winter!

The dog’s used to weird goings-on since they’ve been the norm from Day 1, but even he looked a bit freaked out.

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This is what I remember watching. Below is a synopsis of the documentary that the author writes. It’s about 1:12:11 long, so stretch out those fetish worthy gams - open your favorite brew and grab a bowl of ‘zea mays everta.’

The historical origins of witchcraft in moon-worship and the witches’ legend of creation. Initiation rites undergone by the modern witch’ divination by birds and animals; Christianity’s absorption of pagan rites; revenge killing; the Black Mass. Cecil Williamson’s Museum of Witchcraft in Cornwall.

Investigations into the efficacy of witchcraft; extra-sensory perception; foretelling the future. All featuring the infamous “King Of The Witches” in the only footage in existance of the King Of Wicca. Alexander Saunders… who uses this documentary to guide us through his coven. By then, Sanders had been endorsed by a group of 1,623 practicing Wiccans as ‘King of the Witches’ - with Maxine as ‘Witch Queen’ - and he turned into a media celebrity.

There were TV appearances, late-night talks on radio, a sympathetic biography, record albums of his rituals and this film, The Legend of The Witches, based on his exploits. These were said to include healing people of warts by ‘wishing them on someone else, who’s already ugly’. Another woman was supposedly cured of cander by Sanders sitting with her in the hospital for three days and nights, holding her feet and pouring ‘healing energy’ into her.

Sanders and Maxine parted in 1973 and he drifted into semi-retirement before moving to Bexhill in East Sussex, where he died in 1988. Like Gardner, his legacy was his own tradition of ritual and belief within the Wicca movement - dubbed ‘Alexandrian’ in a play on his first name.

Nice one! :slight_smile:

I’ll definitely get stuck into that later, it looks intriguing.

The lady who owns the Atlantis bookstore near the British Museum might have some references or at least know the right direction to point you. The bookstore has been passed down the family and her grandfather was a previous owner. He was an associate of Crowley’s who was a regular patron of the bookstore back in the day. As a matter of fact, Peter Carroll called her about some business one day while I was in there talking to her! So she is well connected with the British occult scene. Might be worth the bother dropping in next time you’re in the neighborhood. I think she’s often in there running the place alone.

I might do that, thanks!

Would never have thought of that myself, more minds are definitely better than one. :slight_smile:

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The British Library maybe?

After few years, can I ask you about results of your searching?? I am quite curious about british scene :slight_smile:

I guess this is an old topic, but if you’re still interested in it, there are two fictional treatments, based on real events, that I would recommend.

The first is The Magician from W. Somerset Maugham and the other one is the Pendragon Legend from Antal Szerb. These are two of my favourite novels of all time and would be a cracking read for anyone interested in Magick, particularly of the British variety in the 1920s and 30s. The latter one in particular has a lot of research behind it and was seemingly the inspiration for much of Dan Brown’s work. The Maugham novel was largely inspired by Crowley’s career, but it is nevertheless a great read.

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I know, but @Lady_Eva is still with us, so I hope she will answer :slight_smile:
Thank you for your sharing though!