Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Flags, Flax, Fodder and Frigg

You may have seen witches signing off with the signature line "FFF" or "FFFF" and wondered what these letters stand for.  In online Traditional Witchcraft communities the series of F's is used much like Neo-Wiccans use "BB" for "Blessed Be".  Indeed, FFFF is also a kind of blessing, although it has very old roots.

The F rune, fehu, is a mark of prosperity and good fortune.  It, in and of itself, is a blessing.  When tripled or quadrupled its energies are increased exponentially.  FFFF is, quite literally, a spell.

FFFF stands for "Flags, Flax, Fodder and Frigg", as Cochrane makes clear in his third letter to Joe Wilson.

"Flags are a form of rush, a plant that grows in European waters - so the answer is Flags, water, Flax, being the weavers plant and blue, thus representing the Goddess of Birth and Death (Fate) being the principle of Air, and Fodder - which means grass, the Earth. The ancients swore an inviolable oath by grass roots - the answer will come to you if you think on it."

Cochrane's interpretation is element-based (or three-realm based: air, earth & water) and omits the final F.

I was taught a different interpretation of the benediction, which includes the final F. In this system Flags, Flax, Fodder and Frigg breaks down to:

Flags = the flagstone, the home, the hearth and the hearthfire
Flax = clothing, the material of weaving, the benediction of the weaver's power
Fodder = food for animals and people
Frigg = the Goddess Frigg, also slang for copulation

So, Flags, Flax, Fodder and Frigg can be translated as "Blessings of the hearth, the weavers, abundant food, and love/sex/fertility".  These were also once popularly given as gifts to families entering a new home. (Gifts of fire, hand woven cloth, food -- usually something baked -- and love or friendly devotion).

I wish you abundant blessings!


  1. fascinating, i had been wondering what the Fs were for, so thank you for sharing

  2. I learned the same interpretation as you did; Cochrane's take on it is a bit of food for contemplation.

  3. @pjb: Indeed! Every time I read the letters I feel like I find something new in them that I hadn't noticed before. I hope to explore them in more detail on this blog. :)


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