Much of the history and life of a Witch, has been a Secret one.  The practice of witchcraft has always been done in secret; away from prying eyes of the uninitiated.  Personal "trade"secrets were also kept from other practitioners; or only shared among a select few.  And so both secret writings and Alphabets were used; along with other secret methods of communication. 

In addition to wanting secrecy;  special alphabets were considered a way to imbue power through the written word. 

They were used to mark, and charge tools with the witche's power and to inscribe spells.  The most common of these has been known as "the Witches runes", not because it is a Runic alphabet; but because in early languages the word "rune" meant "mystery" or "secret".  

The alphabet that is most commonly used as "the Witches Alphabet," was the "Runes of Honorious," or "Theban Script." 

These names do not necessarily imply Greek or Egyptian derivation.  Some witches feel it is a relic of Atlantis; while others believe there is a connection with Cabalistic "Enochian Script" used by the Elizabethan magician, John Dee.  Whatever the case It is an ancient writing; and has been used by witches for many centuries, as their magical alphabet for writing spells and inscriptions.

Here is the THEBAN Alphabet with English letter counterparts.
A  B    C   D   E   F   G
H   I    J   K   L   M   N
O   P    Q   R   S   T   U
V   W    X   Y   Z  

Another way of witches communicating with one another was to write messages, in what has come to be called invisible Ink.  

One really interesting method:

Was to use an egg for the message. Which could easily be slipped to the other Witch, within a basket of eggs at the marketplace.

The Egg should be hard boiled at least 5 minutes; and cooled.  Dissolve as much alum as you can in a tablespoon of vinegar.  Alum is found in the pharmacy or in the grocery store with pickling supplies. Use this solution to write on the eggshell using a piece of straw from a broom, a toothpick, or a small brush.
Once the egg is dry, it looks perfectly normal. When the shell is removed, the writing is visible on the egg's surface. (Note: although alum has been used for years in pickling, it is no longer considered as safe as it once was (an the aluminum compounds may be linked to Alzheimer's Disease) so it is best not to eat too many of these eggs.

There are Two methods used:

For invisible writing on paper or parchment. 

The First method, (which I feel is preferable),
Is that the writing compound is heat sensitive and becomes visible when heated.  It disappears again, once the item cools. Heat sensitive invisible inks are usually fairly simple organic liquids that will appear invisible once they have dried on a sheet of paper, but will darken when held over a heat source.

Here are the directions:

          Pour or squeeze approximately 2 tablespoons of lemon or
          onion juice into a small bowl. Lemon or onion juice work best.
          But milk or vinegar can also be used.      

          Dip a straw, small brush or Cotton swabs to write your
          message on the paper. Let it air dry naturally, do not heat.
          The dried paper is held some distance over a candle, or
          pressed with a hot iron. There is, a danger of the paper
          catching on fire with the candle, or scorching with the iron,
          so take the necessary precautions.  It will be a little smoky,
          but the message should appear fairly quickly.

          Prisoners used this method to sneak out messages, using
          their own sweat and saliva as ink.

With the other method:

The message is written in the invisible compound and after it has dried; it is brushed with another liquid that stains the paper and the message is then revealed; either by the message being left unstained; or stained darker than the background.  After the message is revealed it remains visible and needs to be destroyed.

Here are several different formulas for the Writing compound and Revealing liquid.

I          Combine 2 tablespoon of baking soda and 2 tablespoon of
          water in a cup.  Dip a straw, small brush or Cotton swabs to
          write the message on light paper.  After the paper is
          completely dry, you can paint over it with purple grape juice
          and it will become visible.

II    Use lemon juice; and a straw, small brush or Cotton swabs to
          write the message.  Allow it to dry.  Brush a dilute solution of
          iodine and water (10 or so drops in 1/4 cup (60 ml) of water).
          The iodine will complex with the starch in the paper
          and turn purple. The lemon juice painted sections will remain
          white. Caution: Iodine is toxic and will stain almost anything it
          touches brown and is not an easy stain to remove.

III    Combine 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to 1/2 cup of water.
          Cook until it starts to thicken. Let it cool, and write your
          message.  After the paper is completely dry, you can sponge it
          with a solution of iodine and water (10 or so drops in 1/4 cup
          (60 ml) of water). Your writing will appear in a dark blue, and
          the paper will be a lighter blue.

IV   Use a half cup of water and vinegar, or half cup of water
          and ammonia.  Dip a straw, small brush or Cotton swabs to
          write the message on light paper.  Allow the message to dry
          completely. To read the message: spray, paint or blot with dye
          solution. (Use care because the solution stains.)

          For the solution: Chop red cabbage into small pieces. Boil
          until the water turns a deep shade of purple. (you can also
          use red Beets).  Allow to cool.
A Period.
Another  way Witches communicated was through the use of  some of these Symbols; which have since become universal representations.   Some of these were inscribed in what is sometimes referred to as the Witches Bible; or Book of Shadows.

Copyrite Notice RiciaJo 2002 all rights reserved

This page was last updated on: 1/12/09

Alphabets are only a symbolic way to represent through words; things that exist in the physical world.   Before alphabets ideas and objects were represented by other  Symbols.  First they were pictographs; which were simplified drawings of objects, like Egyptian Hieroglyphs.  Then other individual  characters came  into use that  represented ideas or objects symbolically.  

The following  are  representative Symbols, from the  "Agrippa".