Author: Ed Fitch
Trade Paperback, 236 pages
Publication date: August 1996
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Additional books by this author
In the late 60s and early 70s, material on Wicca and Witchcraft was hard to come by.
British Traditional Wicca, just about the only game in town at the time, could not handle
all those expressing interest in the religion. Into this information gap stepped Ed Fitch. A
Gardnerian Wiccan, he wrote a set of non-oathbound rituals intended to be freely available
to those seriously interested in Wicca. This work became known as the "Outer Court Book of
Shadows" and was distributed via photocopy. I have a well-thumbed n-th generation copy
dating from the mid-70s. These rituals were originally intended to be used for by "training
covens" whose members would later be initiated into the Gardnerian tradition of Wicca.
However, they form a complete tradition of their own and have been the basis of the rituals
of many non-Gardnerian groups over the years.
For the most part, the rituals in A Grimoire of Shadows are clear and moving, if a
tad generic. Ed Fitch simply writes beautiful ritual. The volume is more than ritual,
however. It includes basic instruction on Wiccan beliefs and on magick. This book is
probably the best published "Book of Shadows" to date. If you are in the position of having
to bootstrap your own Wiccan circle from nothing and have no desire to create a set of
rituals from scratch, you'll find this book invaluable. It's also a major piece of American Wiccan
history and worth having in your library for that reason alone.
Reviewed by Randall
Additional Books by Ed Fitch