Witch Marks

Three intriguing images are carved into the stonework of the doorframe of St Michael’s, a well-preserved Norman church in the village of Stewkley.
They look like partial wagon wheels, each the size of a saucer or side plate. 
The one at the top at head height is a “mass dial”. It’s a miniature sundial; in medieval times the priest would place a small rod on the centre dot to form the gnomon and as its shadow fell onto the various radial lines it would tell him the correct times to conduct mass. 
The other two – one half way up on the right and one near the bottom at knee height are very different. They are witch marks. 
Something strange must have happened in the church or local area, and the superstitious villagers carved their rough versions of the priest’s “magic” symbol to protect the church from evil spirits and ward off witches.
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