A cauldron is a kettle or metal pot used for boiling water. The name is derived from the Latin word caldarum, meaning hot bath. They are no longer used much for cooking, but are more often used in witchcraft and Wiccan rituals.
Cauldron Dimensions and Construction
Their sizes can vary greatly. Some are small, measuring 2” H x 3.5” W. Others measure 6 3/4" in diameter and 6" high. The internal diameter of the cauldron varies too. Many of the cauldrons 3/4" in diameter have internal dimensions of 5” and depth of 4”.
Other cauldrons measure 5 ½” in diameter and 3” high. These cauldrons usually have an internal measurement of 5 ½”. They are 2 1/”2 deep and can hold a pint inside. There are also some larger cauldrons available in stores.
As varied as the cauldron dimensions are the materials used to make them. While some are made of metal, several cauldrons are now constructed of brass. Some also have charcoal screens. There are also some cauldrons made of cast iron.
Regardless of the dimensions, all cauldrons have a large mouth. Most of them come with an arc shaped hanger. The finish also varies, with some being black, gold, silver and many other colors.
Today majority of the cauldrons sold are used for witchcraft and Wiccan rituals. The hand held cauldrons are used for burning incense or charcoal. The cauldron dimensions can also determine what it will be used for.
The smaller ones are used by Wiccans and witches for divination and preparing spells. The larger ones are also used for making spells. They are also employed for rituals. Various potions and charms are also made in the cauldrons, both large and small.
Use in Wiccan Rituals
The cauldron is used extensively in Wicca. In their rituals, the cauldron is set in the middle of a consecrated circle. Items that must be burned during the ritual are done in the cauldron. Symbolically, the cauldron represents rebirth and the womb of the goddess.
The use of the cauldron as a symbol for the goddess is also apparent in the ancient Celtic religion. Water can also be put in the cauldron and used for scrying. Scrying is a technique used for divining the future. The cauldron is also used for making spells. In some forms of Wicca, the cauldron symbolizes the goddess Cerridwen.
The Cauldron in Legend
Fiction and legend have cemented the link between witchcraft and cauldrons. One of the most famous depictions is in Shakespeare’s Macbeth. During the Middle Ages, witches were believed to have used cauldrons to make spells. It also played an important role in their gatherings, called sabbats.
There are also legends that state leprechauns keep their treasures in it. Celtic legends also speak of cauldrons capable of raising the dead. The cauldron is also associated with the Holy Grail.
A study of the cauldron dimensions and its history can be fascinating. Even if you are not into witchcraft rituals, the cauldron can still be used as decoration.