The witches legend
The legend goes back to the Longobard period from 6th to 11th century.The Longobardi used to celebrate in Wotban’s honor (it was the name of their god), around a walnut tree (that many people, today, think should be in the Sabato’s river valley), on the tree they hung a goat, hit it with arrows and ate toring pieces with mouth.
To the local catholic people this custom seemed diabolical. And make them tell that the witches came in Benevento. The legend tell that the witches came from all over the surrounding areas, spread with a magic ointment that make them fly, and each one is accompanied by her own devil, a “Martiniello”. According to the legend, they met each other (they are about 2.000), they did orgies and made spells and then, all together go dancing around the walnut tree and singing the song (in local dialect): "Sott'a l'acqua e sott'o viento, sott'a noce e Beneviento" -“ Under the water under the wind under the Benevento’s walnut”. When the Longobardi people allied with the Barbato bishop, and converted to the Catholicism, the legendary walnut tree was cut down to celebrate the victory on the witches and devils.
[Egicom 05 – by Campania Mia]