Raymond Buckland: Wikis


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Raymond Buckland
Born August 31, 1934 (1934-08-31)
London, England
Occupation Writer; Wiccan Priest
Spouse(s) Rosemary Moss (married 1955 divorced 1973)
Joan Helen Taylor (married 1974 divorced 1982)
Tara Cochran (married 1983)
Parents Stanley Thomas Buckland ; Eileen Lizzie Wells

Raymond Buckland (born 31 August 1934), whose craft name is Robat, is an English American writer on the subject of Wicca and the occult, and a significant figure in the history of Wicca, of which he is a High Priest in both the Gardnerian and Seax traditions.

According to his written works, primarily Witchcraft from the Inside, published in 1971, he was the first person in the United States to openly admit to being a practitioner of Wicca, and he introduced the lineage of Gardnerian Wicca to the United States in 1964[citation needed], after having been initiated by Monique Wilson in Britain the previous year. He later formed his own tradition dubbed Seax-Wica which focuses on the symbolism of Anglo-Saxon paganism.




Life in Britain, 1934-1962

Buckland was born in London on 31 August 1934, to Eileen and Stanley Buckland. Buckland was of mixed ethnicity; his mother was English, but his father was Roma. He was raised in the Anglican Church but developed an interest in Spiritualism and the occult at about age 12, after encountering it from a Spiritualist uncle.

When World War II broke out in 1939, the family moved to Nottingham, where Buckland attended Nottingham High School. It was here that he became involved in amateur dramatic productions.

He went on to be educated at King's College School. In 1955 he married Rosemary Moss. From 1957 to 1959, he served in the Royal Air Force, and then went on to work in a London publishing company for four years, before he and his wife emigrated to the United States in 1962, where they lived on Long Island, New York.

Whilst living in the United States, Buckland worked for British Airways, which allowed him to constantly travel back and forth between the USA and UK.


Learning about the craft, 1962

In the USA, Buckland soon read the books The Witch-cult of Western Europe by Margaret Murray and Witchcraft Today by Gerald Gardner, which gave him an insight into the Witchcraft religion, or Wicca as it is now more commonly known.

To find out more information, Buckland started corresponding with Gerald Gardner in the Isle of Man. The two became friends, and had several telephone conversations, which led to Buckland becoming Gardner's spokesman in America[citation needed].

Initiation, 1963

Both Buckland and his wife Rosemary travelled to Scotland, where, in Perth, they were initiated into the craft by the High Priestess Monique Wilson[citation needed]. Gardner attended the ceremony, but did not perform it himself. Gardner died shortly after, having never met Buckland again.

Long Island Coven, 1963-1973

The Bucklands returned home to the United States where they founded a coven known as the Long Island Coven. The group followed the Gardnerian Wicca lineage which the couple had been initiated into. They tried to keep their identities secret at first, due to concern about unwanted and negative attention, however journalist Lisa Hoffman of the New York Sunday News published a news story on them without permission.

In 1973, Raymond and Rosemary separated, and they both left the Long Island Coven, handing over the role of High Priest and High Priestess to people whose craft names were Theos and Phoenix.

First Museum of Witchcraft and Magic in the United States, 1968-

In 1968 Buckland formed the First Museum of Witchcraft and Magic in the United States, as influenced by Gardner's Museum of Witchcraft and Magic. It started off as a by-appointment-only policy museum in his own basement. After his collection of artifacts grew he moved the museum to a 19th century house in Bay Shore. The museum received some media attention, and a documentary was produced about it.

In 1973, Raymond and Rosemary separated. Buckland moved his museum to Weirs Beach in New Hampshire. In 1978, he moved to Virginia, disbanded the museum, and put all his artifacts in storage.

In 2008, the artifacts of the Museum were entrusted to the care of The Covenant of the Pentacle Wiccan Church (CPWC), based in New Orleans, LA and led by High Priestess Rev. Velvet Rieth. CPWC plans to raise funds to display the artifacts once more, either in a New Orleans area building, and/or as a traveling exhibit in select U.S. cities.

Books, 1969-2008

In 1969 Buckland published his first book - A Pocket Guide to the Supernatural. He followed this with in 1970 with Witchcraft Ancient and Modern and Practical Candleburning Rituals, as well as a novel called Mu Revealed, a spoof on the works of James Churchward, using the pseudonym Tony Earll (an anagram for 'not really'). By 1973 he was earning enough money with his books that he could take over running of his museum full time. He has published a book almost every year since.

Seax-Wica, 1974-1982

In 1974 Raymond married Joan Helen Taylor. He became fed up with the quarreling within Gardnerian Wicca so decided to form his own Wiccan tradition[citation needed], which was Seax-Wica. Seax-Wica was based upon symbolism taken from Anglo-Saxon paganism. He published everything about the movement in The Tree: Complete Book of Saxon Witchcraft. He then began a correspondence course to teach people about Seax-Wica, which grew to having around a thousand members.

Solitary life, 1992-contemporary

In 1992 Buckland and his wife moved to a farm in Holmes County, Ohio, where he continued to write, and work as a solitary Wiccan.


Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft (1986)

Ray Buckland is an author of many books dealing with the occult and witchcraft. His most popular book is Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft first published in 1986[citation needed]. His books include:

  • A Pocket Guide to the Supernatural. Ace Books, NY. 1969, 1975. 
  • Practical Candleburning Rituals. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1970, 1976, 1982, 200. 
  • Witchcraft Ancient and Modern. House of Collectibles, NY. 1970. 
  • Witchcraft From the Inside: Origins of the Fastest Growing Religious Movement in America. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1971, 1975, 1995. 
  • pseudonym Tony Earll (1970, 1972). MU Revealed. Warner Paperback Library, NY. 
  • with Hereward Carrington (1975). Amazing Secrets of the Psychic World. Parker/Prentice Hall, NJ. 
  • The Tree: Complete Book of Saxon Witchcraft. Samuel Weiser (Red Wheel/Weiser), ME. 1974, 1978, 2005. 
  • Here is the Occult. House of Collectibles, NY. 1974, 2009. 
  • The Anatomy of the Occult. Samuel Weiser, ME. 1977. 
  • The Magick of Chant-O-Matics. Parker/Prentice Hall, NJ. 1978, 1980. 
  • Practical Color Magick. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1983. 
  • Color Magick: Unleash Your Inner Powers. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2002. 
  • Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1986, 2002. 
  • Secrets of Gypsy Fortune Telling. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1988. 
  • Secrets of Gypsy Love Magick. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1990. 
  • Secrets of Gypsy Dream Reading. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1990. 
  • Scottish Witchcraft: The History and Magick of the Picts. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1991. 
  • with Kathleen Binger (1992). The Book of African Divination. Inner Traditions, VT. 
  • Doors to Other Worlds. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1993. 
  • The Truth About Spirit Communication. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1995. 
  • The Committee (novel). Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1993. 
  • Cardinal's Sin: Psychic Defenders Uncover Evil in the Vatican (novel). Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1996. 
  • Ray Buckland's Magic Cauldron. Galde Press, MN. 1995. 
  • Advanced Candle Magick: More Spells and Rituals for Every Purpose. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1996. 
  • Witchcraft: Yesterday and Today (video). Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1990. 
  • Gypsy Witchcraft & Magic. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1998. 
  • Gypsy Dream Dictionary. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 1999. 
  • Coin Divination. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2000. 
  • The Buckland Romani Tarot. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2001. 
  • Wicca for Life. Citadel, NY. 2001. 
  • The Witch Book. Visible Ink Press, NY. 2001. 
  • The Fortune-Telling Book. Visible Ink Press, NY. 2003. 
  • Signs, Symbols & Omens: An Illustrated Guide to Magical & Spiritual Symbolism. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2003. 
  • Cards of Alchemy. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2003. 
  • Wicca For One. Citadel, NY. 2004. 
  • Buckland's Book of Spirit Communications. Llewellyn Publications, MN. 2004. 
  • The Spirit Book: The Encyclopedia of Clairvoyance, Channeling, and Spirit Communication. Visible Ink Press, NY. 2005. 
  • Mediumship and Spirit Communication. Buckland Books. 2005. 
  • Face to Face with God?. Buckland Books. 2006. 
  • Ouija - "Yes! Yes!". Doorway Publications. 2006. 
  • "Death, Where is Thy Sting?". Buckland Books. 2006. 
  • Dragons, Shamans & Spiritualists. Buckland Books. 2007. 
  • Buckland's Doorway to Candle Magic. Buckland Books. 2007. 
  • the Torque of Kernow (novel). Galde Press/Buckland Books. 2008. 
  • The Weiser's Field Guide to Ghosts. Red Wheel/Weiser. 2009. 
  • Buckland's Book of Gypsy Magic. Red Wheel/Weiser. 2010. 


  • In the WB series Charmed, which goes about a trio of sister witches, Prue Halliwell (the oldest sister), worked at an auction house called Buckland Auction House (often referred to as Bucklands). This is a reference to Raymond Buckland.


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