I love this article, scientists doing their best to debunk an old superstition.
The scientists assembled all the ingredients necessary to perform this bit of black magic; the bat’s blood, the top of a mountain, a full moon, a maiden pure of heart and mind, all in order to magic themselves up ‘a youth of surpassing beauty’.
I know that they were sure they were out there proving that science trumps magic but I wonder how many of the scientists were secretly hoping for that extremely good-looking youth to appear before them?
I’ve got to feel sorry for the maiden though. She was pure of heat and mind but obviously just not pretty enough. The scientists were happy to sacrifice her in order to get a better looking version. Poor bugger….
Obviously the Brocken was the kind of place that make it easy for people to believe a bit of the otherworld seeps through. I have did a post last year about the Spectre of the Brocken, a pine tree wielding monster stalking about the mountain.
It is a pity the Spectre didn’t make an appearance during this experiment. I can just imagine the crowd scattering before it, all thoughts of magical appearances abandoned, and the pure maiden just left there all alone, still tied to the sacrificial altar.