June 4, 2009

‘Witch bottle’ found with contents intact

Builders in London discovered an intact 17th century witch bottle, a wine jug containing hair, finger nail clippings, pins and urine, researchers said.

The researchers told British Archeology that the bottle, believed to be the first found with its contents intact, was discovered at a construction site in the Greenwich district of London, The Daily Telegraph reported Thursday.

The burial of witch bottles containing personal items was a common practice among people suffering from illnesses and believing themselves to be the target of witchcraft during the 17th century, the researchers said.

The researchers said an analysis of the bottle's contents reveal that the owner was a smoker and the length of the finger nails indicates wealth.