This is a interview of one author who has been researching and bringing together much of what has be write about the history.

What fascinated me is what he learned about the use of the word Wicca, as it does not seem to follow what most BTW people tend to believe.

Wicca: History, Belief, and Community
September 1, 2015 by Yvonne Aburrow 1 Comment

Ethan Doyle White has recently published an important new book: Wicca: History, Belief, and Community in Modern Pagan Witchcraft, available on and, and due for release on 1 November 2015. So I approached him for an interview.


Simply put, a methodical examination of the early texts of the movement showed that that wasn’t the case. Gardner never used the term “Wicca”. What he did use was the term “the Wica”, which contains only one c, not two. However, “the Wica” was not a name for this religion, or even his tradition specifically. Instead it referred to the community of Pagan Witches – a community that he of course believed (or at least, publicly appeared to believe) – represented isolated survivals of a pre-Christian Murrayite witch-cult with its origins in prehistory. Thus, in Gardner’s understanding of the term, “the Wica” comprised not only his own Gardnerians, but also members of the traditions propagated by other Witches like Charles Cardell and Victor Anderson, both of whom he was in contact with.

The historical data shows that the term “Wicca” – as a name for the religion itself – appears in Britain in the early 1960s, where it is use among the early Alexandrians. They don’t use it in an exclusive manner to refer solely to the Gardnerians and Alexandrians, but rather in a far wider, inclusive manner, to refer to all Pagan Witchcraft groups claiming to be the survivals of Murray’s witch-cult. If you read Stewart Farrar’s What Witches Do, an early Alexandrian work, you’ll see him talking of Gardnerian, Alexandrian, Traditional, and Hereditary “Wiccans”, not “Witches”.

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I'm not seeing how the above differs from anything BTWs are aware of and have maintained? Gardner did not call the Craft "wicca" and stated quite plainly how the witches of New Forest used the term. He continued in that manner, as do initiates (amongst each other) today. We're also quite aware when and how the transition to referring to the tradition came about, which coincided with the coining of the term "Gardnerian".

Also it's not correct that Gardner "never" used the word Wicca (2c's), by the 1960s the tradition and its spelling was being used publicly with 2 c's. E.g., Here is a photocopy of an interview with Gardner from 1961 in which he tells the reporter himself he prefers to be called a Wicca, "Not witch -- wicca." If he still used 1 c, he would have made that clear to the reporter as well.


What about what you posted did you find to be somehow new and other than what has been covered innumerable times over the decades?

Thanks for that link I am always happy to learn a bit more about our  Wiccan history. Gardner was already gone by the time I visited the Witches Mill in the Isle of Mann in the late Summer of 1968. At the time I had no idea I would  become Wiccan and had not yet heard the term, as Witch was all that I saw mentioned at the museum at the time. My main purpose of y visit to the Isle of Mann at age 21 was to see the Isle of Mann Railroad and Manx Electric Lines. I am still fascinated by narrow gauge trains. It has been a life long passion.

As for what has been covered over the decades I only know about that  I have read here in the United States. If I post something, and it is refuted, that does not bother me for I have learned something new in the process. Even though I will soon be 70 years of age, I still enjoy learning. I am afraid my mind at this stage of the game is almost the only thing still flexible. At this stage I am mostly house bound or short walks on my property of less than a hundred feet distance. So the Internet is my only source of the outside world or any information about of my interests.

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