The Witch’s Tree is a timeslip novel, moving from the present day to 1682, from Selena’s story as she comes to stay in Sloe Cottage in Somerset, to Grace who lived in Slaugh Cottage in the seventeenth century. It is a story of injustice and heartbreak. It is a story of a spirit who cannot rest.
Many people, mostly women, were accused of witchcraft and the reasons that fingers were pointed were tenuous and coincidental. It is a serous subject that affected the lives of many innocent women.
But, on a slighty lighter note, I have devised a quiz below which asks the question – would you have been thought a witch back then, in those days of superstition and fear?
It’s a fun quiz but, when you read The Witch’s Tree, you’ll see that gossip and suspicion have far-reaching consequences for innocent lives.
My own total was very high – I’d have had no chance!
I wonder how you’ll get on?
QUIZ: Would you have been considered a witch five hundred years ago? Do the quiz below to check out your chance of survival…one point for each and 50 points for the first question:
- You are female
- You are young – between 16 and 35
- You are older than 35
- You have red hair, freckles
- You are attractive – to anyone
- You have beauty spots or moles
- You have a wart, or a stray hair on your chin
- You have an animal who adores you, especially a cat
- Someone has a grudge against you
- Someone’s husband ‘speaks you fair’
- You have many children
- You have no children
- You are a little bit eccentric
- You like to be out at night sometimes, or walk about in the woodlands, alone
- You use herbs a lot
- You sing or dance or talk to yourself
- You sweep the floor with a besom broom – any broom…
- You sometimes stand up against injustice to yourself or your family
- You live alone
- You have a birthmark, or something unusual about you that sets you apart –
- You like animals. You have a way with animals
- You can heal people a bit, or at least, you show empathy when people need it
- The weather is particularly bad, or good, and you live locally
- You have had an argument with someone at some point and they have a grudge
- You look at someone – it doesn’t matter how or when – and then some misfortune happens to them within the next year. Or a cow or pig dies…and you live less than three miles away
17th Century Score:
0-50: You are probably safe…but only probably…
51-59: You are at risk
60-67: Bad luck. You are highly at risk
68-74: You have no chance. You will almost certainly be accused of being a witch.