If you’ve started reading this article because of the “interesting” sounding title, then you might be in for a bit of a letdown. But, if you’ve heard of hag stones before or you’re interested in learning more about them, then you’ll likely read on, and hopefully leave feeling that you’ve learned something worth learning. I recently came across another story referencing hag stones and have been trying to obtain one ever since. They happen to be one of those items that work better if you personally acquire them rather than someone giving you one or you buying one.
Hag Stones can be any type of stone as long as they possess a natural hole through it and if in your possession, should be considered a sacred object. They have been called by many names over the centuries including Witch Stones, Adder Stones, Snake Eggs, Hex Stones, Fairy Stones, Holy Stones, Holeys, and Eye Stones. Most are found in dry riverbeds or along the seashore, as the action of running or moving water causes the erosion that result in the unique appearance of the stone. The reason they are so sought after and valuable is because it’s common belief that magick cannot work on moving water, and since the holes in hag stones are made by the force of this element (water,) that the stones retain water’s beneficial influence. In effect, a hag stone is an amazing protection amulet, and so much more.
The name “hag stone” originates in part from ancient beliefs that most maladies, which were curable by using this stone, were caused originally by spectral hags. Other areas call them adder stones because they are believed to protect the wearer from the effects of snake bite. Germanic legend says that adder stones are formed when serpents gather together and use their venom to create the holes in the center of the stones. Hag stones are said to have many uses. They have been used by witches worldwide for centuries in both rituals and spell work. They also have been used, ironically, as a toll to counteract a witch’s magick. Legend has it that they can be used to ward off the dead, curses, sickness and nightmares.
They are used to see invisible creatures of the land of the Fae and open up a window to other realms. They are used as protection against spells, warding, and healing. The spell for fertility magic had a hag stone tied to the bedpost to help facilitate pregnancy. There are stories of very large hag stones; large enough for someone to walk through. These are used by couples trying to achieve pregnancy by walking through it together or holding hands.
Livestock owners would use the stones to protect their animals from bewitchment or being ridden to the Sabbath by witches. A stone would be suspended by a cord in the center of each stable to protect the horses and other live stock. Else a cow would give sour milk and hens refused to lay and eggs. Fisherman and sailors would often find them on beaches during their travels. They would tie them to their boats to keep off evil spirits and witches from affecting their ships and their catch. It was believed that evil spirits and witches would curse ships to have small catches, but a hag stone would prevent this from happening. A few stories speak of them being able to control the winds on the high seas; or more formerly, they could control the weather.
Hag stones are called fairy stones because of their power to aid the user in “seeing.” If you close one eye and peer through the hole in a fairy stone with the other, you’ll be able to see into the Kingdom of the Fae. You’ll be able to see elementals and other beings from the Fae world. There are some practitioners of Italian folk magic who also believe that fairy stones can be used to see and ultimately bind a faery to their service for a specific length of time; a dangerous practice for sure. If you have a fairy stone, wear it around your neck when you’re out in nature looking for fairies. To “fine tune” your faery attraction skills, gather morning dew in a container and gently pour it through the hole in your fairy stone before anointing yourself. If the fairy stone was found in the ocean, looking at the water through the hole may help you discover Sea Spirits, Mermaids and Mermen. If your fairy stone was found in a forest, it can help you connect with Tree Spirits. A charm of a hag stone suspended on a red cord is especially useful at Samhain, when the veil between this world and the fairy world thins.
Hag stones were also used as pledge stones, giving the bearer the ability to know if another spoke the truth. Some believe that hag stones represent the sacred vagina of the Goddess and they can be used to create powerful love spells by inserting a stone or stick that fits exactly into the hole, making a request, and throwing the connected pair into the sea. Tie them to anything you would like protected. If you’re lucky enough to have several, tie them together for a magickal boost to their power. They also regenerate your energy. They refresh your body, mind, and spirit with healing energy when a stone is hung over your bed at night.
What’s amazing is that this compilation isn’t even complete. Did I mention that hag stones were used as protection against the evil eye? And on and on and on; bottom line is that if you can get your hands on a hag stone, treasure it and treat it like the sacred object that it is.
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