The Witte Wieven were, when translated from the Dutch language 'The White and Wise women' who inhabited the regions that are now called The Netherlands, Belgium and France. In the Netherlands they are primarily known in the Eastern and Northern regions. It is also noteworthy to mention that the Northern region was formally Saxon land. They were, like the Irish (Aryan) Chief Druids wearing white cloaks, a colour that symbolised The Sun and Purity (Anna Wilkes, Ireland; Ur of the Chaldees and Manly Palmer Hall, The Secret teachings of all Ages). The Witte Wieven were highly regarded and respected amongst the people. Another name referring to them was 'Juffers', a Dutch name/title that implies the art of teaching; a 'juf' nowadays refers to a female member that teaches the children at school.
'Wit' can also mean 'Knowledge' as in the Sanskrit 'Vid', or Greek 'Video' (Vision) and therefore insight. The Witches were therefore women of Knowledge. The Dutch verb 'Weten', which means 'Knowing', is also closely related.
Like the Druids, or more correctly said as Druidesses, the Witte Wieven were the healers of the people when needed. They were known for their tremendous knowledge of herbalism and spiritual insight like i hinted at before. They can also be traced back to the Nordic Völva, who were known for their prophetic qualities. It isn't strange or coincidental that the Belgian name for the Witte Wieven was Madama Blanche, a title given to female prophets.
Like the Irish (Aryan, Erian) Tuatha dé Danann, the Witte Wieven are associated with being Elves, spirit-like beings. And both are known to be 'Underworld'-related; both resided at burial mounds and lakes. The Underworld, otherwise known as Hel in Scandinavian mythology, was the place to go to for psychological and spiritual cleansing. In modern psychology this concept is better known as The Shadow, which every human being must befriend and transcend in his life if there is going to be any sanity. It may be the reason why my country is called The Netherlands, the 'Lower Lands' (land of the Underworld) or Holland, a Holy Land. People are simply not Whole (Holy) if they refuse to accept and go through the Underworld, otherwise known as the Shadow or Hel. Even Grecians were previously known as the Hellenes.
The Witte Wieven known for dancing in a circular motion, probably symbolized the motion of the planets and the cyclic nature of seasons. And most importantly it symbolizes therefore that the Microcosm and Macrocosm are inseparable.
What happened to them?
Taken from Wikipedia :
At first, early medieval literature described The Witte Wieven more like pranksters and pests. Later Christian teaching transformed the idea of a "witte wieven" into mistflarden: ghost witches, re-characterized as evil and to be avoided.
Like all the profound protectors and leaders of the people, the Witte Wieven (Druidesses) became victim of the dominating Church who misled and deceived people to join their hierarchical, corrupt, plagiarizing solar cult (Christianity). Because as history tells us, if you didn't listen to the 'inquiring' invaders of the Church, you were of the 'Devil'.
"...the men of the culture suffered a psychosis so extreme that they believed that their wise women were so dangerous that they had to be eliminated."
We, as Dutch people still use the word Wief, but spelled another way, with another meaning that resulted from the 'inquiring' Church that slaughtered hundreds of thousands of people at stakes throughout the place we now call Europe. Nowadays the word 'Wijf' has a very negative meaning, and is mostly used to degrade the female member. If people over here only knew that the 'Wijven' where originally the Wise Women, and protectors of the people...
Thus, what we call Marriage was originally a Holy Union on more than one level. When a Man married a Wife (Wief) it implied that he was inwardly transformed (gone through the Underworld). All these rituals and words became abused and corrupted away from their original meaning. Marriage became a 'mere materialistic agreement' for ages now.
True 'Juffers' or 'Juffen' do not exist anymore, and unfortunately, the inquisition and superstition is far, far from over!
Many thanks to Michael Tsarion and his tremendous inspiration and support.