The 1606 marks were carved in hidden areas inside Knole, a house in Kent, shortly before the king was supposed to visit in the wake of the Gunpowder Plot. Archaeologists believe the scratches were intended to ward off evil spirits, protecting the monarch in an era of superstition and fear of assassination.
Archaeologists were investigating a room built to accommodate royalty as part of ongoing conservation work at the house. Once they lifted the floorboards, they found the criss-crossed lines gouged out of beams and joists, as well as on a fireplace.
Experts believe that craftsmen working for the owner of Knole, Thomas Sackville, carved the marks in anticipation of a visit from King James I with the intention of protecting him from evil spirits. But the owner died, meaning James did not visit as planned.
Back then, superstition abounded and witches were thought to be real. To this day, some believers copy lines and scratches from ancient manuscripts to ward off evil. But how could drawings in the material world form a barrier to something ethereal?
I prefer to use positive thoughts to counter a harmful influence. How about you?