A member of a people that arrived in Europe in migrations from northern India around the 14th century, now also living in North America and Australia.
Gypsies are Romany peoples, travelers often portrayed as living in caravans and wandering from place to place, stopping to earn money whenever a fair or circus is in town.
Many of us hold the image of a veiled woman calling herself Madam Za Za or the like, who, crouched over a crystal ball in a darkened tent, would divine our future providing we crossed her palm with silver.
Even though it is believed that the Gypsies came from India by way of Persia, they often claimed that they were originally from Egypt. Representing themselves as diviners in the ancient magical traditions of Egypt, the Gypsies began reading fortunes with picture cards called atouts that were very popular in Persia. These picture cards, after going through an European transformation, became the popular Tarot.
Romany people call fortune telling dukkerin or dukkering, and a crystal ball was certainly used by them, handed down from generation to generation. One of the reasons gypsy women may have been credited with having magic powers was their rich knowledge of herbalism.
To Romany people, the drabarni were the herb or wise women of the clan. Another reason why gypsy women may have been credited with magic powers is that the dancing bears which often accompanied circus troupes were believed by some to be familiars.
Magic abilities of gypsy wise women:
Preparation of herbal potions
Ability to heal horses by magic means
Preparation of aphrodisiacs
See Witchcraft, Agrippa, Diviner, Divination, Wizard, Pythagoras, Witch, Warlock, Alchemy, Paracelsus, Devil, Kabbalism, Numerology, Alchemy, Magic, Satan, Palmistry, Crystal Gazing, Tasseography, Love Spells -- Use these powerful love spells to help you find and keep your true love, Unbroken Curses, The Tarot Store, Divination & Scrying Tools and Supplies, Unique Amulets, Talismans, Good Luck Charms, and Love Tokens, Powerful Witch Doctor Spell Kits, Powerful Spells - Cast by Andreika the Witch, Webmasters Make $$$, AzureGreen - Celebrating All Paths to the Divine, ISIS - Tools for Your Soul's Journey, and The Pyramid Collection - Myth, Magick, Fantasy and Romance.
Sources: (1) Spence, Lewis, An Encyclopedia of Occultism, Carol Publishing Group; (2) Pickering, David, Cassell Dictionary of Witchcraft, Cassell Academic; (3) The Encyclopaedia Britannica Eleventh Edition Handy Volume Edition, Oxford University Press.
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