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Ant Wallis Illustration

Cures and Curses

I discovered the books of Janet and Colin Bord as a teenager, I was so impressed with their authoritative and meticulously researched approach to the subject of mysterious phenomenon. So, you can imagine what a thrill it was to be asked to produce some artwork for Janet's book 'Cures and Curses: Ritual and Cult at Holy Wells'. I produced many illustrations for the book, some of which were mock woodcuts, here's a selection:- (1) this one depicts St Patrick escaping a sea monster as he arrives on the Isle of Man (2) a headless woman in white haunted the Goblin Well near Mold, promising a young man a 'precious store of sparkling gems' (3) Here, we see Sir Edmund Rich who claimed that, following a vision of Christ, a spring began to flow on the same spot (4) this is St Neot with his feet in a holy well reading psalms as a form of self-mortification (5) the incubation ritual at Llandegla required a patient to spend the night under an alter with the Bible as a pillow (6) some holy wells were believed to be the haunts of witches