Owen Davies (historian)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Owen Davies
Born (1969-08-26) 26 August 1969 (age 50)
EducationSondes Place Comprehensive School, Dorking, Surrey
Alma materLancaster University
OccupationProfessor in Social History
Years active1999–present
EmployerUniversity of Hertfordshire

Owen Davies is a reader in Social History at the University of Hertfordshire. His main field of research is on the history of modern and contemporary witchcraft and magic.[1]

His interest in the history of witchcraft and magic developed out of a childhood interest in folklore and mythology, which was spawned in part from reading the books of Alan Garner. From around the age of sixteen, he also became interested in archaeology and began to get involved with field-walking and earthwork surveying. He then went on to study archaeology and history at Cardiff University and he spent many weeks over the next six years helping excavate Bronze Age and Neolithic sites in France and England, mostly in the area around Avebury. He developed a strong interest in archaeology in general, and the ritual monuments and practices of the Neolithic and Bronze Age.

From Cardiff, he went on to write a doctorate at Lancaster University, working on a thesis looking at the continuation and decline of popular belief in witchcraft and magic from the Witchcraft Act 1735 to the Fraudulent Mediums Act 1951 (1991–1994).


  • Davies, Owen (2011). Paganism: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-1992-3516-2. OCLC 1023117514.
  • Davies, Owen (1999). Witchcraft, magic and culture 1736-1951. Manchester University Press. ISBN 978-0-7190-5655-0. OCLC 41338629.
  • Davies, Owen (1999). A People Bewitched: Witchcraft and Magic in Nineteenth-Century Somerset. Bruton. ISBN 978-0-9536390-0-7. OCLC 44989636.
  • Davies, Owen (2007). Popular Magic: Cunning-folk in English History. Hambledon Continuum. ISBN 978-1-84725-036-0. OCLC 85830157.
  • Davies, Owen (2005). Murder, Magic, Madness: The Victorian Trials of Dove and the Wizard. Pearson Education. ISBN 978-0-582-89413-6. OCLC 63279021.
  • Davies, Owen (2009). Grimoires: A History of Magic Books. Oxford University Press USA. ISBN 978-0-19-920451-9. OCLC 244766270.

He co-edited the following collections of essays:

He has also written numerous articles on the same subject in various history and folklore journals.


  1. ^ Davies, Owen (4 April 2008). "Owen Davies's top 10 grimoires". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 April 2009.