Despite the insistence of some that the Wiccan Rede is taken from this piece, the Rede of the Wiccae was not published until the 1970s by one Lady Gwen Thompson, although some attest to its existence at least a few years earlier within Thompson’s own tradition. Thompson claims it was taught to her by her grandmother, Adriana Porter. The fact that it includes the word “Wiccan,” however, makes it highly unlikely that this could be the case, especially when one considers that in Wicca’s early years just about everyone was claiming a witchy or Wiccan grandmother.
Doreen Valiente is sometimes mistakenly credited with authoring this piece. Valiente published the Witches Creed in 1978 in her book Witchcraft for Tomorrow, which is a completely separate document.
This is NOT the Wiccan Rede. It includes the Rede (in the last line), but it is not the Rede. It is, according to all available evidence, a document newer than the Rede. It also mentions the Witches’ Rune, which is credited to Valiente and Gardner.
Bide the Wiccan Laws we must
In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust.
Live and let live,
Fairly take and fairly give.
Cast the Circle thrice about
To keep the evil spirits out.
To bind the spell every time
Let the spell be spake in rhyme.
Soft of eye and light of touch,
Speak but little, listen much.
Deosil go by waxing moon,
Chanting out the Witches’ Rune.
Widdershins go by waning moon,
Chanting out the baneful rune.
When the Lady’s moon is new,
Kiss thy hand to Her, times two.
When the moon rides at her peak,
Then your heart’s desire seek.
Heed the North wind’s mighty gale,
Lock the door and drop the sail.
When the wind comes from the South,
Love will kiss thee on the mouth.
When the wind blows from the West,
Departed souls will have no rest.
When the wind blows from the East,
Expect the new and set the feast.
Nine woods in the cauldron go,
Burn them fast and burn them slow.
Elder be the Lady’s tree,
Burn it not or cursed you’ll be.
When the Wheel begins to turn,
Let the Beltane fires burn.
When the Wheel has turned to Yule,
Light the log, the Horned One rules.
Heed ye Flower, Bush and Tree,
By the Lady, Blessed Be.
Where the rippling waters go,
Cast a stone and truth you’ll know.
When ye have a true need,
Hearken not to others’ greed.
With a fool no season spend,
Lest ye be counted as his friend.
Merry Meet and Merry Part,
Bright the cheeks and warm the heart.
Mind the Threefold Law you should,
Three times bad and three times good.
When misfortune is enow,
Wear the blue star on thy brow.
True in Love ever be,
Lest thy lover’s false to thee.
Eight words the Wiccan Rede fulfill:
As Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will