Graveyard Shift

20 Haunting Portrayals Of Witches In Art  

Samantha Dillinger
711 votes 75 voters 1.1k views 20 items

List Rules Vote up the creepiest works.

Witches are a haunting subject, and witches depicted in art reflect just how much the magical, folkloric beings have frightened people throughout history. From broomsticks to melting pots to backwards goats, witches in art are nearly as daunting as the stories that have been passed down for centuries.

Although films and TV shows such as Hocus Pocus and Sabrina the Teenage Witch give us fun-loving, energetic, and distinclty human witches, paintings and wood carvings of witches in artwork often reveal the cultural fear that inspired tragic events such as the Salem Witch Trials. 

Witch images in art can be creepier than an Addams family dinner, but they're also reflections of historical anxieties. These portrayals demonstrate just how deep the association between the Devil and the craft runs. These witches are not wearing crystals or growing vegetables - they're preparing their next sacrifice.

1
'The Witch Erichtho' - John Hamilton Mortimer, Unknown Year
'The Witch Erichtho' - John Ha... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 20 Haunting Portrayals Of Witches In Art
Photo:  John Hamilton Mortimer/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0
Creepy?
2
'Dance Of The Sabbath' - Émile Bayard, 1870
'Dance Of The Sabbath' - Émile... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 20 Haunting Portrayals Of Witches In Art
Photo: Émile Bayard/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain
Creepy?
3
'Linda Maestra' - Francisco Goya, 1799
'Linda Maestra' - Francisco Go... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 20 Haunting Portrayals Of Witches In Art
Photo: Unknown/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain
Creepy?
4
'Witch Riding Backwards On A Goat' - Albrecht Dürer, C. 1500
'Witch Riding Backwards On A G... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 20 Haunting Portrayals Of Witches In Art
Photo: Albrecht Dürer/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain
Creepy?