Probably NOT witch marks, more like a builder's "aide memoire" a couple of hundred years back.
Above: possible "Witch marks" on one of the beams in a spare bedroom. We have them on other beams too . . . and in this case they are almost certainly witch marks - the cross-hatching is especially associated with ritual marks.
This was meant to be the post about my visit to Thomas Hardy's cottage, but I have an attack of Drowsyitis and just want to zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
So instead, I shall ask you - just HOW superstitious are you? I am dreadful and I never:
1. Tread on cracks in the pavement.
2. Cross knives.
3. Open an umberella indoors - let alone put it over my head!
4. Bring May blossom indoors.
5. I go ballistic if someone puts their new shoes on the table.
6. If anyone spills salt, I throw a pinch (for the devil) over my left shoulder.
7. If I see a Magpie, I cross my fingers until I see a 4 legged animal (this is sometimes not carried out if I am driving though . . .)
8. I try not to look at a new moon through glass.
9. I am worried as we have broken two mirrors this year, and my eldest daughter, one . . .
10. I'm none too happy if a bird flies into the house (harbinger of death . . . having said that, normally the bird's around here, because the cats always notice it.)
11. If my left hand itches, then I'll be paying out money . . .
12. I always try to avoid walking under a ladder.
13. We'll avoid this number shall we?
14. I always touch wood and whistle to avoid alerting the fates!
15. I often cross my fingers and hope!
In the past, people living in our house were very superstitious, and placed these objects over doorways (to keep witches out and keep themselves safe from harm). The skull is that of a cat, the rat is mummified and the child's boot looks like the rat had a meal from it before it died!
I would love to know what YOU are superstitious about and to hear from people who read this and are amongst those who NEVER COMMENT!!! You know who you are (perhaps I will have to cast a spell to find out . . .)