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March Lecture: “Scottish Necromancers and Elite Magic” IN-PERSON TICKETS SOLD OUT, ONLINE ONLY

16th March 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Illustration from The Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy, attributed to Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa (1559).

Please note, this event is fully booked to attend in-person, but we have plenty of online tickets left.

This will be a hybrid event hosted by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland which will take place both in Augustine United Church and online. Immediately after the lecture there will be a drinks reception.

It may be necessary, due to any future local restrictions imposed because of the pandemic, to move certain events to fully online only. Please keep an eye on the Society website, e-newsletters and your email inbox for the latest news and further information on Society events.

This event is free and open to all.

Lecture will be presented by Dr Louise Yeoman MA(Hons) FSAScot and Professor Julian Goodare MA PhD FRHistS FSAScot

A survey of necromancers and elite magic in Scotland with two sixteenth century case studies: firstly the 1568 political conspiracy of Sir William Stewart of Luthrie, during which he ritually summoned a lunar spirit called ‘Obirion’ and consulted prophetic witches from Scotland and Norway, and secondly Ritchie Graham of North Berwick witch fame, 1590. The lecture will argue that ‘necromancers’ need to be understood in the context of broader practices of elite magic, and their connections to popular magic.

Lecturer Details

Louise Yeoman is the producer of BBC Radio Scotland’s podcasts ‘Witch Hunt’ and ‘Time Travels’. She is co-director of the Survey of Scottish Witchcraft and was previously a curator of early modern manuscripts at National Library of Scotland. Her research interests lie in Early Modern Scottish piety and belief. She is the author of the book Reportage Scotland and has been a radio producer for nearly twenty years now.

Julian Goodare is Emeritus Professor of History, University of Edinburgh. His books include The European Witch-Hunt (2016). His most recent edited books are Demonology and Witch-Hunting in Early Modern Europe (2020), co-edited with Rita Voltmer and Liv Helene Willumsen, and The Supernatural in Early Modern Scotland (2020), co-edited with Martha McGill. He is director of the online Survey of Scottish Witchcraft.

March Lecture 2023 Registration



House Rules

The Society has a zero-tolerance policy on harassment and bullying.

All attendees are requested to act with respect to one another during this hybrid event.

Anyone making comments which we believe to be inappropriate (e.g. offensive or abusive) will be removed from the event immediately. Equivalent procedures (e.g. with regard to spam) will apply online.


COVID-19 Precautions for attending in-person events

To ensure all attendees and members of staff have a safe and enjoyable experience at these events, please make sure you adhere to the following rules:

We request that you do not attend if you have any COVID-19 symptoms prior to the event

Try to maintain social distancing where possible and respect those with Distance Aware badges or lanyards

Please use hand sanitising stations provided

Listen to further announcements made by members of staff



The main entrance to the church is up four steps with a handrail.

Step free access is available via a door to the right of the building – please ring the bell for attention. Please note there is a tight turn in this passageway.

A standard accessible toilet is available on the ground floor and lower level (accessible via lift).

The venue (AUC sanctuary) has a hearing loop included.

Assistance dogs are allowed inside the venue.

If attending via Zoom, captions are included.

You can find further information on Accessibility here.



16th March 2023
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Category:


Augustine United Church
41 George IV Bridge,
Edinburgh, EH1 1EL United Kingdom

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