Transvection
Term used to indicate the claim of witches flying through
the air on a broomstick, but also on a distaff, a shovel, or an animal.
The term was originally used in a religious sense for the
transportation of saints, such as St. Joseph of Copertinn. There
were some seventy aerial flights claimed, but from the sixteenth
century onward the flight of witches was also described as transvection.
The flight of witches was achieved with a magical flying ointment.
However, if the witches heard the sound of church bells
while flying to the Sabbat, they might be grounded. It is likely
that the special ointments used to assist transvection may have
had a hallucinatory effect, giving the illusion of traveling
through the air. Such ointments could have produced experiences
akin to astral projection or out-of-the-body travel.