|“||The Italians call them Strega. The Yoruba of West Africa call them Iya, meaning mother. Where my mother was from, they called them Häxa. And here, we call them witch. Over the centuries vampires have fought them and fought beside them, bedded them and burned them. Whether adversary or ally they have been a force to be reckoned with.||”|
— Elijah on the Witches
Witches are people, male and female, with the power to affect change by supernatural means (witchcraft).
The Balance of Nature
The Balance of Nature is a belief system based around the observance of the Earth and reverence of nature and the Spirits. The goal of many witches is to honor the design of nature and to maintain balance within the natural world. The balance of nature is intimately tied to one's spiritual relationship with the Earth, and the idea that all living things (e.g. animals, humans, plants, etc.) are considered sacred, as they are all different aspects of nature. Contemporary witches would also agree that using modern ceremonies, rituals and shamanic practices is the best way to attune themselves with the natural rhythms of the universe in their efforts to obtain guidance and knowledge from wiser known witches called "the Spirits." However, according to a witch named Gloria, who referred to herself as a practitioner of "old school voodoo," it is implied that not all witches follow this belief system, and that witches have the free will to choose how they wish to practice their power.
The origin of witchcraft remains unknown, however it is known that witches have existed for many centuries passing down their knowledge and skills through generations of family lines. Contrary to popular belief, witches do not receive their powers from demons, nor do they worship the devil. Instead, witches consider themselves as the Servants of Nature, and they make it their duty to maintain balance within the world.
Magic is the power to affect change in the world by supernatural means. Magic can often be split into bright and dark, though depending on the situation, can also be neutral.
Ancestral Magic is a form of sorcery commonly used among the witches of New Orleans. Similar to Spirit Magic, this form of sorcery draws energy from the dead ancestors of a witch in a certain location and can be used however the spirits see fit. However, according to Elijah Mikaelson, this power can only be harnessed from the location of where the witches died, meaning that should the witch abandon the area, they will be rendered powerless.
Dark Magic (or Black Magic) is a form of sorcery that draws on malevolent powers, and may be used for negative purposes (e.g. to cause destruction or misfortune, to injure or kill, or for the profit of oneself rather than for the benefit of others.) In popular usage, the term "dark magic" is often used to describe any form of sorcery that is used negatively.
Expression is an extremely dark form of magic that draws on darkness that doesn't exist on the natural plane without harming it. The details and history of expression remain unknown, however according to Nandi, the forces of expression are considered so powerful that many witches discredit it as magic, for it expands beyond the limitations of both traditional and contemporary forms of witchcraft.
Sacrificial Magic is a dark form of magic that relies upon the sacrifice of living or undead creatures to fuel a witch's power. The more sacrifices, the stronger the witch. This type of magic is also extremely volatile and easy to corrupt if one know what they're doing.
Spirit Magic draws on the power of dead witches (or the Spirits of Nature), and may be used for either good or evil purposes. Unlike other forms of magic, a witch can only use Spirit Magic however the spirits see fit. If a witch abuses the magic bestowed upon them, the spirits may break the connection, preventing the witch from harnessing their power. Bonnie Bennett once channeled the energy of one hundred dead witches in her attempt to kill Klaus. However, after she used the power to resurrect her dead boyfriend, the spirits declined Bonnie from further channeling them, as they viewed resurrection spells as a violation against nature.
Traditional Magic is the most common form of witchcraft among modern witches. Traditional Magic draws energy from the forces of Nature and may be used however the witch sees fit. Although Traditional Magic is very popular among the witchcraft community, it also very exhausting. Due to the fact the witch is exerting their own energy, the witch may experience symptoms of dizziness, fatigue, and minor nose bleeds. Bonnie Bennett explained the limits of this power to Jeremy Gilbert, saying that if she pushed too hard, it would push back.
Traveler Magic is a default form of witchcraft used by a subculture of witches known as the Travelers. It is used by the Travelers as a result of being cursed and incapable of using Traditional Magic. This form of magic specializes in spirit possession and its spells are cast in a language different from all other forms of witchcraft. Traveler magic is highly dependent upon the innate magic of a witch and their connection to other Travelers. Only by joining together are Travelers able to perform powerful feats of magic. Without access to the magic of other Travelers, they are virtually powerless.
Powers and Abilities
- Channeling: The act of invoking or summoning extra forms of energy by focusing on external forces.
- Divination: The act of divining future, past, and present events based off extrasensory perception.
- Clairvoyance: The practice of divination through the perception of emotions, objects, people, or physical phenomena.
- Intuition: The practice of divination through the use of instinctive knowledge.
- Mediumship: The practice of communicating with the spirits of the dead.
- Premonitions: The practice of divination through the observation and study of dreams.
- Psychometry: The practice of divination through contact with or proximity to a certain object or person.
- Special Psychic Gifts: The practice of divination through powers that are unique unto the witch. Davina Claire could psychically sense the use of magic and also the location of the witch. Monique Deveraux could psychically sense whether or not someone was lying, while her aunt, Sophie Deveraux, could psychically sense whether or not someone was pregnant.
- Elemental Control: The act of controlling and manipulating the elements of air, earth, fire, and water.
- Spell Casting: The act of changing and controlling events through the use of charms, hexes, rituals, etc.
- Telekinesis: The act of controlling and manipulating the movement of objects and persons through mental influence.
- Witches Brew: The act of brewing and concocting magical potions.
Spells and Rituals
For a complete list of spells and rituals, visit Spells and Rituals
- Candles: Materials used to amplify a witch’s spell.
- Grimoires: A family journal documented with ancient recipes, rituals, and spells.
- Herbs and Stones: Materials used as ingredients for brewing and concocting paranormal potions.
- Talismans: Materials used to amplify a witch’s powers.
- Disbelief: The act of denying or disbelieving in ones magical potential could cause a witch to inadvertently suppress their paranormal power.
- Fear: A distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the condition or feeling of being afraid could cause a witch to involuntarily block their own powers for a short time.
- Mortality: Based off the fact that witches are still human, they share many of the same weaknesses as non-supernatural beings (e.g. age, decapitation, disease, heart-failure, suffocation, etc.)
- Overuse of Magic: The excessive use of magic could lead to disorientation, nose bleeds, unconsciousness, and if taken to the extreme, death.
- "Witches have a connection to the Earth. We can literally feel nature."
- — Bonnie Bennett
The relationship between the Earth and the witches is a very deep spiritual connection that many witches have and according to Bonnie Bennett, witches can literally feel the Earth. Most witches revere the Earth with just as much commitment and reverence as other religious factions do about their churches or mosques. Witches believe that all living creatures are a part of nature and that natural objects should be treated with just as much respect as theists treat their shrines and temples.
- "Witches talk, even on the Other Side. Who do you think makes all the rules?"
- — Sheila Bennett
- "Witches being pulled down by vampire problems...as much as we tried to do to stay out of it."
- — Sheila Bennett
The relationship between werewolves and witches is a neutral to negative relationship. Werewolves and witches have been shown to be at odds more than allies.
- "Well the way he sees it all witches are family. We're all bonded together by a code of loyalty to help each other."
- — Luka Martin
|Qetsiyah||Qetsiyah was one of the most powerful witches of all time who is most notably known for the creation of the Immortality Spell, as well as the Cure to immortality, the Anchor and the Other Side.||Deceased|
|Silas||Silas was a very powerful witch who was notable for becoming the very first Immortal.||Deceased|
|The Hollow||The Hollow is a powerful, Native American witch that was bestowed power from her tribal elders, which made her crave more power in life. Upon her death at the hands of her tribesmen, she created the Werewolf Curse. In death, she grew even more powerful and, according to Vincent, is one of the most powerful witches in history. She utilized Elijah's death to resurrect herself. After her second death, her spirit has been neutralized and contained within Klaus.||Deceased (Spirit divided)|
|Markos||Markos was an ancient witch and also the leader of the Traveler subculture.||Deceased|
|Dahlia||Dahlia is the elder sister of Esther Mikaelson and was also one of the most powerful witches in history.||Deceased|
|Ayana||Ayana was a powerful Bennett witch and the mentor of Esther Mikaelson.||Deceased|
|Esther Mikaelson||Esther Mikaelson was one of the most powerful witches in history who is notable for the creation the Original family of vampires.||Deceased|
|Freya Mikaelson||Freya Mikaelson is the firstborn child of the Mikaelson family and was an extremely powerful witch due to the connective magic that bound her to Dahlia. Though the link has been broken and has been weakened, she continues to remain a powerful witch.||Alive|
|The Witch of The Five||The Witch of the Five was a Bennett witch who was notably known for the creation of the Brotherhood of the Five.||Deceased|
|Katerina Petrova||Katerina Petrova was a witch before transitioning into a vampire. After she ingested the cure centuries later, she was once again a witch and, to temporarily avoid death, performed the passenger spell on Elena. Her father was a former member of the Traveler subculture.||Deceased|
|Céleste Dubois||Céleste Dubois was a very powerful dark witch of the French Quarter who was notable for the possession of multiple bodies over the course of a hundred years.||Deceased|
|Beatrice Bennett||Beatrice Bennett was a very powerful ancestor of the Bennett family who lived during the 18th century. She, along with her mother and coven, are notable for imbuing the Maxwell Bell with magic to drive out the sirens as well as protecting the town from Hellfire.||Deceased|
|Emily Bennett||Emily Bennett was a very powerful ancestor of the Bennett family who lived during the 19th century. She is known for trapping the Tomb vampires underneath Fell's Church, as well as creating enchanted objects, such as the Gilbert Ring.||Deceased|
|Mary-Alice Claire||Mary-Alice Claire was a French Quarter witch and the ancestor of Davina Claire. She is known for the creation of many Dark Objects, alongside Astrid, under Kol Mikaelson's tutelage using Arabian witchcraft, known as Kemiya.||Deceased|
|Astrid Malchance||Astrid Malchance was a French Quarter witch. She is known for the creation of many Dark Objects, alongside Mary-Alice, under Kol Mikaelson's tutelage using Arabian witchcraft, known as Kemiya.||Deceased|
|Papa Tunde||Papa Tunde was a very powerful dark witch who specialized in Sacrificial Magic. Using this form of magic, he successfully desiccated and channeled the Original vampire, Rebekah. He's also known for the creation of the "Tunde Blade".||Deceased|
|Genevieve||Genevieve was an very powerful dark witch of the French Quarter. She was skilled in herbalism as well as having an adept mind for spellcraft, such as when she combined various spells from Esther's Grimoire to create the enhanced Moonlight Rings.||Deceased|
|Gloria||Gloria was a powerful witch who was able to slow down the aging process, living for over a hundred years.||Deceased|
|Josephine LaRue||Josephine LaRue was a very powerful witch, patron of the Dowager Fauline Cottage, and former Regent of the New Orleans covens. Her Safe-house Spell upon St. James Infirmary was powerful enough to even warrant Dahlia's wary.||Deceased|
|Bastianna Natale||Bastianna was an Elder and a powerful dark witch of the French Quarter. She advocated the Harvest and Reaping until her untimely death.||Deceased|
|Agnes||Agnes was a powerful Elder witch of the French Quarter. She is known for the hex she cast upon Sean O'Connell that lead to the massacre of his fellow seminary students.||Deceased|
|Sheila Bennett||Sheila Bennett was the grandmother of Bonnie Bennett and a very powerful witch. She is known for mentoring her granddaughter in magic and guiding her whenever the veil to the Other Side was down. In Bonnie's greatest need, she along with the other Bennett witches returned from peace to aid her in saving Mystic Falls.||Deceased|
|Moroccan Witch||The Unnamed Santeria witch of Morocco is a powerful practitioner who is known for taking down the Original Vampire, Rebekah. She is the creator of a powerful and dark resurrection spell, that Kol was weary of, as well as, presumably, the Cursed Stakes.||Alive|
|Joshua Parker||Joshua Parker was a powerful witch and former Leader of the Gemini Coven. He was notable for the incarceration of his son Malachai Parker via the Prison World Banishment Spell.||Deceased|
|Jonas Martin||Dr. Jonas Martin was a powerful witch and also the father of Greta and Luka. Throughout his life, he collected a vast array of grimoires. Despite his knowledge and skill, he could not resurrect he deceased son.||Deceased|
|Josette Parker||Josette "Jo" Laughlin is the firstborn daughter of Joshua Parker and twin sister of Malachai "Kai" Parker. She decided to relinquish her magic in her youth when Kai slaughtered her siblings. She would later regain her magic only to give it to Kai after the improper Merge Ritual.||Deceased|
|Kara Nguyen||Kara Nguyen was an Elder and very powerful witch of the Ninth Ward Coven. She was also a Versailles witch and the mother of Van Nguyen.||Deceased|
|Lucy Bennett||Lucy Bennett is a witch of the Bennett family and cousin to Bonnie. She was known for sealing the Armory's vault prior to her death.||Deceased|
|Jane-Anne Deveraux||Jane-Anne Deveraux was the mother of Monique Deveraux, sister of Sophie Deveraux and also a powerful witch of the French Quarter.||Deceased|
|Vincent Griffith||Vincent Griffith is a very powerful witch of the Tremé Coven who was under the possession of Finn Mikaelson. He was the Regent of the New Orleans Witch Community, until his impeaching by The Ancestors. With the Ancestors gone, he continued to lead the Witch Community and built peace among the vampires. Vincent was partially responsible for the re-connection of the Ancestral Plane with the completion of the new Harvest and Reaping Rituals.||Alive|
|Eva Sinclair||Eva Sinclair was a very dark and powerful witch who had been possessed by Rebekah Mikaelson. She excelled at sacrificial magic as she attempted to complete the Rite of Nines in an attempt to gain more power than that of the New Orleans Regent.||Deceased|
|Sabine Laurent||Sabine Laurent was the last witch who Celeste Dubois took possession of throughout the past.||Deceased|
|Sophie Deveraux||Sophie Deveraux was the maternal aunt of Monique Deveraux, sister of Jean-Anne Deveraux and was briefly an Elder witch of the French Quarter Coven.||Deceased|
|Alexis||Alexis was a witch and cypher who prophesied the destruction of the Mikaelsons and the coming of "The Beast".||Deceased|
|Dominic||Dominic was a powerful witch as well as the High Priest of the Hollow. Due to his loyalties to the Hollow, he circumvented death twice before being slain for a third and final time.||Deceased|
|Maddox||Maddox was a witch and a member of Klaus' inner trusted circle.||Deceased|
|Van Nguyen||Van Nguyen was a Versailles witch and a member of the Ninth Ward Coven. He was also the son of Kara Nguyen. After Vincent was shunned by the Ancestors, he was given Regency over the Nine Covens, and considered a very powerful witch until his untimely demise.||Deceased|
|Emma Tig||Emma Tig is a witch, teacher, and guidance counselor at the Salvatore Boarding School for the Young & Gifted. She mainly watches over the lower grade level students and acts as the Younger Student Representative on the Honor Council. She protected the younger students and Lizzie Saltzman from the gargoyle, Petrotho, with an illusion spell.||Alive|
|Bonnie Bennett||Bonnie Bennett is a very powerful witch and the last living witch of the Bennett bloodline. She is most notably known for repeatedly saving the town of Mystic Falls and the people living there with the use of her magic.||Alive|
|Olivia Parker||Olivia "Liv" Parker was a powerful witch and also a member of the Gemini coven.||Deceased|
|Lucas Parker||Lucas "Luke" Parker was a powerful witch and also a member of the Gemini coven.||Deceased|
|Kaleb Westphall||Kaleb Westphall was a French Quarter witch who was possessed by Kol Mikaelson and was killed while still being possessed by him.||Deceased|
|Luka Martin||Luka Martin was a witch and also former friend of Bonnie Bennett.||Deceased|
|Greta Martin||Greta Martin was a witch and a member of Klaus' inner circle. She is the daughter of Jonas Martin and sister to Luka Martin. She is known for breaking the Hybrid Curse.||Deceased|
|Madison||Madison was a powerful dark witch and a former member of The Sisters.||Deceased|
|Ariane||Ariane was a powerful dark witch and untrained Seer to her coven, The Sisters.||Deceased|
|Davina Claire||Davina Claire is a very powerful, former Harvest witch, former Regent of the New Orleans covens prior to being shunned, as well as a former member of the Sisters Coven. She has since left New Orleans and her ancestral coven behind.||Alive|
|Monique Deveraux||Monique Deveraux was the daughter of Jane-Anne Deveraux, maternal niece of Sophie Deveraux and also a powerful Harvest witch.||Deceased|
|Abigail||Abigail was a powerful Harvest witch.||Deceased|
|Cassie||Cassie was a powerful Harvest witch who was under the possession of Esther Mikaelson. Once freed, she became apart of the Kindred before being killed by Freya.||Deceased|
|Amy||Amy is one of the 2019 Harvest witches who was chosen in order to perform the Harvest Ritual and reestablish the Ancestral Plane. With Jessica and the other two Harvest girls, they've successfully sent Klaus and Hayley to the Ancestral Plane to speak with Davina.||Alive|
|Jessica||Jessica is one of the 2019 Harvest witches who was chosen in order to perform the Harvest Ritual and reestablish the Ancestral Plane. With Amy and the other two Harvest girls, they've successfully sent Klaus and Hayley to the Ancestral Plane to speak with Davina.||Alive|
|Lizzie Saltzman||Lizzie Saltzman is the twin daughter of Alaric Saltzman and Josette Laughlin. She is also a Siphoner, a sub-classification of unique witches.||Alive|
|Josie Saltzman||Josie Saltzman is the twin daughter of Alaric Saltzman and Josette Laughlin. She is also a Siphoner, a sub-classification of unique witches.||Alive|
|Penelope Park||Penelope Park is a witch and former student at the Salvatore Boarding School for the Young & Gifted. She left with her mother, who got a job in Belgium, and plans to attend a witch-only school.||Alive|
|Finn Mikaelson||Finn Mikaelson was a witch while possessing Vincent Griffith. While being a spirit imprisoned within his sister's necklace, he still possesses the ability to use magic.||Deceased|
|Kol Mikaelson||Kol Mikaelson was a witch before his transition into an Original vampire, as well as when he was possessing Kaleb Westphall.||Undead|
|Rebekah Mikaelson||Rebekah Mikaelson was a witch while possessing Eva Sinclair. Though she had the witch gene, she never tapped into her power.||Undead|
|Abby Bennett Wilson||Abby Bennett was a powerful witch who is notably known for the desiccation of the Original vampire, Mikael before being turned into a vampire by Damon.||Undead|
|Lenore||Lenore was a New Orleans witch who was skilled in sacrificial magic until she was possessed by Esther. She was later turned into a vampire by Rebekah and eventually, killed by Freya.||Deceased|
- According to Rebekah Mikaelson, the transformation of a witch into a vampire would result as a regular vampire. Rebekah explained that since vampires are supposedly the abominations of nature while witches are supposedly the servants of nature, the Earth would never allow the two species to interconnect. Therefore, it was originally believed that if a witch were transformed into a vampire, they would lose their magically powers. However, while Abby Bennett Wilson did in fact lose her magic after her transition into a vampire, the writers have yet to explain how Hope Mikaelson has transcended this rule by becoming the very first creature born of vampire, werewolf, and witch heritage.
- Atticus Shane gave Bonnie Bennett a talisman that was worn by her ancestor, Qetsiyah. This talisman was created from human bone, which lead the audience to believe that Qetsiyah practiced expression, due to the fact that expression is the only form of witchcraft that channels energy from human sacrifices. However it was later said that Qetsiyah only practiced traditional magic because during her time, no other magic existed. This seems highly unlikely as Silas was shown to have experience and knowledge of expression. If expression was created later in time, Silas would not have known anything about expression or any other forms of witchcraft, being that he was trapped in cave for two millenniums without any communication to the outside world.
- Klaus Mikaelson mentioned that Qetsiyah lived during the Archaic period and that her native language was Aramaic. However, during a flashback, Qetsiyah was shown speaking modern English.
- Sheila Bennett said that the Bennett family originated in Salem, Massachusetts and relocated to Mystic Falls, Virginia during the witch trials of 1692. However, it was later said that the Bennett family originated in Europe and originally settled in Mystic Falls during the Middle Ages.
- While few may prefer the term warlock, male witches are generally called witches. Luka and Jonas Martin were the first male witches to use the term.
- According to Abby Bennett Wilson, all magic is monitored by nature and has consequential effects. She explained this to her daughter, Bonnie Bennett, when she informed her of how she always dreamt of a normal life and how after she defeated an Original vampire named Mikael, she made the decision to abandon her family in order to live the life she so desperately desired outside of Mystic Falls. As punishment for deserting her lineage, Abby said that it was nature (not the Spirits) that slowly took away her magic until she was completely powerless.
- According to Bonnie Bennett, almost all witches have a spiritual connection to the elements of the Earth and the forces of nature. Since most witches derive their magic from nature, Bonnie explained how witches can literally feel the essence of life itself.
- According to Emily Bennett, vampirism was an evil curse created from dark magic. She explained how some humans (such as Stefan Salvatore) were unfit to become vampires due to their gentle nature. Since vampirism is known to enhance the characteristics and magnify the emotions of a person, humans who are naturally benevolent will become even more benevolent as a vampire. However, since the basic nature of a vampire is to kill, many kindhearted vampires struggle to fight their urges to murder and more often than not, fall off the wagon by cutting off their humanity and going on a killing spree. These vampires become known as "rippers".
- According to Esther Mikaelson, the creation of the Original vampires was an accident as she never intended to turn her family into monsters, but merely to protect them from harm. After the death of her youngest son, Henrik, Esther and her husband, Mikael, feared the power of the werewolves and wanted to exceed them in superiority. With the support of her husband, Esther created a spell that would not only grant her family immortality, but would also make them faster and stronger than the wolves. Despite the countless warnings given by her mentor, Ayana, Esther used dark magic to successfully enact the spell.
- According to Sheila Bennett, the Spirits are responsible for creating the laws on magic. Contrary to her granddaughter, Bonnie Bennett, Sheila has presumably always practiced spirit magic whereas Bonnie originally practiced traditional magic. Sheila hinted that she practiced spirit magic when she first met Damon Salvatore, whom she immediately disliked. When Damon asked how Sheila could hate him without even knowing him, Sheila informed Damon how the Spirits "talked" to her, and told her that he was an enemy of the Bennett family and discouraged her from trusting him. One year after her death, when Bonnie performed a manifestation spell which allowed the supernatural spirits of Mystic Falls to materialize, Sheila confirmed that the Spirits were responsible for creating the rules on witchcraft.
- Hope Mikaelson
- Hope is a hybrid Werewolf/Vampire/Witch
- Hope is an active witch because her blood is vampiric, but she is not a vampire.
- It is unknown if activating her werewolf gene will negate her witch abilities.
- Hope's blood makes her more resilient than other witches.
- Hope could possibly practice magic on a level never seen.
- List of Witches - a complete list of all witches who have appeared in the series.