A cauldron or caldron (from Latin caldarium, hot bath) is a large metal pot for cooking and/or boiling over an open fire, with a large mouth.
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The Cauldron - General Pagan - The White Goddess

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Monday, 23 January 2017

The Cauldron

The Cauldron

A cauldron or caldron (from Latin caldarium, hot bath) is a large metal pot for cooking and/or boiling over an open fire, with a large mouth. 

In Wicca the Cauldron - symbolically the womb of the Goddess and as a symbol of transformation. A versatile tool to place offerings to the gods of old within it, brew potions, burn candles and paper spells. They have also been used by Witches as tools of divination and scrying and containers for sacred fires and incense. Often dedicated to the Goddess Ceridwen, and associated with water and the west.

Perhaps the most popularised uses of a cauldron comes from Shakespeare's Mcbeth

Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison'd entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Swelter'd venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' the charmed pot.

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork and blind-worm's sting,
Lizard's leg and owlet's wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

From Shakespeare's Macbeth Act 4, Scene 1

Real and Mythological Cauldrons

The Dagda's Cauldron, a large cooking pot which never emptied and which left none hungry, is one of the four legendary treasures of Ireland.  In Irish mythology the Tuatha Dé Danaan (peoples of the goddess Danu) brought with them a treasure from each city – from Murias came The Dagda’s Cauldron, known as Undry.

The Gundestrup cauldron is a richly-decorated silver vessel, thought to date to the 1st century BC. It was found in 1891 in a peat bog near the hamlet of Gundestrup, Denmark. It is now housed at the National Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen.

The Gundestrup cauldron is the largest known example of European Iron Age silver work (diameter 69 cm, height 42 cm). The style and workmanship suggest Thracian origin, while the imagery seems Celtic.

The Gundestrup cauldron

Detail of antlered figure holding a serpent and a torc, flanked by animals (including a stag), depicted on the cauldron found at Gundestrup, Denmark. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. Author Bloodofox

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