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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 February 2007, 16:39 GMT
Witch's bottle spellbinds expert
Bellamine Witch Bottle
The bottle will be displayed at the Old Naval College
A 17th Century bottle, said to have the power to break a witch's spell, is being examined in Leicestershire.

The Bellamine Witch Bottle, believed to be the first of its kind to be found unopened, is thought to contain urine, human hair and metal pins.

The find, uncovered in Greenwich, south east London, will be displayed at the Old Royal Naval College.

It is being looked at by Dr Alan Massey of Loughborough University, an expert in the field.

It's an exciting thing to look at
Dr Alan Massey

It is thought the bottles were created by people who believed they had fallen victim to a witch's spell.

The idea was that the witch would be harmed or killed by the bottle's mixture.

Dr Massey, a retired chemist, who studies the bottles as a hobby, said he was very excited by the discovery.

"The seal not having been broken will give us a sample of body fluid, urine probably, that's maybe 340 years old - it's an exciting thing to look at.

"The main thing that I'm interested in is that the stopper doesn't appear to have been pierced.

"There's definitely liquid in it one can feel it when you gently shake it."

He said around 200 of the bottles had been discovered previously.

The witch's bottle is the first of its kind to be found intact and unopened

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