The alt.usage.english FAQ
Wicca is "a pagan nature religion having is roots in pre-
Christian Europe and undergoing a 20th-century revival" (AHD3).
Only the most recently published dictionaries contain an entry for
it; RHUD2 dates it 1975. "Wicca" is a revival of an Old English
word that you can find in older dictionaries by looking up the
etymology of either "witch" or "wicked". In Old English, _wicca_
was the masculine form of a word meaning "wizard" or "sorcerer".
(The feminine form was _wicce_. "Witch" comes from _wicce_.)
_Wicca_ and _wicce_ came from from a proto-Germanic (not Celtic)
_wikkjak_, "one who wakes the dead", the first element of which
comes from the same Indo-European root as "wake".
If anyone is interested in tracing the origins of Wicca,
there's an interesting site at http://www.geraldgardner.com/.
Yes, we've heard the joke about the Beatles song "Wiccan, Work It
Source: [Mark Israel, 'Word Origins: Wicca', The alt.usage.english FAQ file,(line 4313), (29 Sept 1997)]
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