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Scott Cunningham
Born June 27, 1956
Royal Oak, Michigan, United States
Died March 28, 1993(1993-03-28) (aged 36)
Occupation Writer

Scott Douglas Cunningham (June 27, 1956 – March 28, 1993) was a U.S. writer. Cunningham is the author of several books on Wicca and various other alternative religious subjects.

His work Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, is one of the most successful books on Wicca ever published;[1] he was a friend of notable occultists and Wiccans such as Raymond Buckland, and was a member of the Serpent Stone Family, and received his Third Degree Initiation as a member of that coven.

Early life[edit]

Scott Cunningham was born at the William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, USA, the second son of Chester Grant Cunningham and Rose Marie Wilhoit Cunningham. The family moved to San Diego, California in the fall of 1959 due to Rose Marie's health problems. The doctors in Royal Oak declared the mild climate in San Diego ideal for her. Outside of many trips to Hawaii, Cunningham lived in San Diego all his life.

Cunningham had one older brother, Greg, and a younger sister, Christine.

When he was in high school he became associated with a girl whom he knew to deal in the occult and covens. This classmate introduced him to Wicca and trained him in Wiccan spirituality. He studied creative writing at San Diego State University, where he enrolled in 1978. After two years in the program, however, he had more published works than several of his professors, and dropped out of the university to write full-time. During this period he had as a roommate, magical author Donald Michael Kraig and often socialized with witchcraft author Raymond Buckland, who was also living in San Diego at the time.


In 1980 Cunningham began initiate training under Raven Grimassi and remained as a first-degree initiate until 1982 when he left the tradition to pursue a solo practice of witchcraft.[2]

Cunningham practiced a fairly basic interpretation of Wicca, often worshipping alone, though his book series for solitaries describes several instances in which he worshipped with friends and teachers.

He also believed that Wicca, which had been a closed tradition since the 1950s, should become more open to newcomers.

Cunningham was also drawn to Huna and a range of new age movements and concepts that influenced and coloured his spirituality.


In 1983, Scott Cunningham was diagnosed with lymphoma, which he successfully overcame. In 1990, while on a speaking tour in Massachusetts, he suddenly fell ill and was diagnosed with AIDS-related cryptococcal meningitis. He suffered from several infections and died in March 1993. He was 36.[3]

Published works[edit]


Cover of Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, Cunningham's most successful book

Art by Robin Wood[edit]

Several of Scott's books include black and white drawings and (in some editions) cover art by the Wiccan artist Robin Wood. Among these books are Magical Herbalism, Earth Power, and Earth, Air, Fire, Water.


Film references[edit]

Cunningham's Wicca book in the film Never Say Macbeth

Never Say Macbeth, a 2007 film, is based around a group of actors who battle the curse of Macbeth by using Scott's book, Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner. This film was released on DVD by Vanguard Cinema in August 2008.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "His books on Wicca led to a steady rise in his popularity, and he soon became one of the best-read Wiccan authors of his time. Sales of his most popular book Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner (Llewellyn, 1988), reached over 400,000 copies by the year 2000" http://www.controverscial.com/Scott%20Cunningham.htm
  2. ^ Harvey, Graham, Listening People, Speaking Earth: Contemporary Paganism, Hurst, 1997, pp.50, 231
  3. ^ Harington, David & Regula, Traci, Whispers of the Moon: Life and Work of Scott Cunningham, Philosopher, Magician, and Modern-day Pagan, Llewellyn, 1996
  4. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1053889/


  • Several of Scott's own books contain autobiographical text.
  • Rosemary Ellen Guiley, The Encyclopedia of Witches & Witchcraft.
  • Raven Grimassi, Encyclopedia of Wicca & Witchcraft.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Cunningham — Please support Wikipedia.
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10795 news items


Sun, 30 Aug 2015 17:06:35 -0700

ATLANTA, GA – AUGUST 08: Mickey Shuler #82 of the Atlanta Falcons avoids a tackle by Don Jones #36 of the Miami Dolphins in the third quarter of a preseason at the Georgia Dome on August 8, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty ...
The Independent
Sat, 29 Aug 2015 21:30:00 -0700

Board member Sean Borst said members of the community group have asked for compromise before from landfill executives, including Region Vice President Scott Cunningham. During a fiscal court meeting several months ago, Cunningham appeared with ...

WA today

WA today
Sun, 30 Aug 2015 16:48:45 -0700

Scott Cunningham, from Channel Nine, told Radio 6PR on Monday morning the flight was also delayed before takeoff. "One of the passengers told us they were actually on the tarmac in Dubai for three hours because there was some kind of error message on ...

Atlanta Journal Constitution

Atlanta Journal Constitution
Sat, 22 Aug 2015 14:57:01 -0700

“We wanted to take advantage of that, build on that and hopefully continue to grow that.” Georgia Tech season-ticket sales surging photo. Bobby Dodd Stadium will have the most season-ticket holders since 2009. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images).

McDowell News

McDowell News
Tue, 25 Aug 2015 14:00:00 -0700

At age 44, Scott Cunningham of Marion found himself with a failing heart and in desperate need of cardiac care. He is alive and well today thanks to the quick response by the cardiologist and staff at Blue Ridge Cardiology at the Marion Medical Plaza ...


Thu, 27 Aug 2015 07:12:54 -0700

Is Notre Dame a pretender? Can anyone stop the Buckeyes, or will TCU have something to say about it? Let our panel of experts guide you. Mark J. Rebilas/Greg Bartram/Scott Cunningham / USA TODAY Sports/Getty Images. FOX Sports Stewart Mandel, ...

CBS Local

CBS Local
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 08:28:45 -0700

Falcons Have Their Work Cut Out This Week In Miami. August 27, 2015 11:09 AM. View Comments. Matt Ryan surveys the field for the Atlanta Falcons. (Photo Credit: Scott Cunningham/Getty Images Sport) ...

Design & Trend

Design & Trend
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 13:26:15 -0700

(Photo : Getty Images/Scott Cunningham) San Diego Padres closer Craig Kimbrel was claimed on waivers Friday, but the team reportedly has no plans to trade him. San Diego Padres closer Craig Kimbrel has been claimed on waivers by an unknown team, ...

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