The Witch’s Ride

The besom (broom), pole or stang are well known horses for the witch’s ride to the sabbat and otherworldly realms.  Possibly one of the earliest European depictions of a woman riding a pole or besom is in Le Champion de Dames (The Champion of Women) written by Martin le Franc in 1451 and illuminated by Peronet Lamey.

The image of the Flying Women are easily overlooked and appear in the margin of a single page in the text seen here.

The book itself is beautiful on an artistic level and chronicles the great women of history, folk lore and mythology.  As a precursor to the Enlightenment Period, Les Champions de Dames criticises French aristocracy and points to corruption in politics and government.

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