- “This is the spell book of Winifred Sanderson. It was given to her by the devil himself. The book is bound in human skin… and contains the recipes for her most powerful and evil spells.”
- ―Allison on the Manual
The Manual of Witchcraft and Alchemy is an evil spell-book given to Winifred Sanderson by the Devil himself. Written in blood and bound in human skin, it contains the recipes for her most powerful and evil spells.
The book's cover is made mostly from pieces of human skin stitched together, is adorned with snake-shaped ornaments, and has a lock which can keep the cover shut. Its pages are written in human blood. It also has a human eye on the front cover which is often closed in sleep, and only wakes to the calls of its endlessly doting mistress. This means that the book is actually sentient and highly intelligent.
As an unholy record of evil magic bestowed by the Devil himself, the book itself is protected by magic, and therefore cannot be burned or destroyed by traditional means.
Among its contents is the life potion, an evil potion that allows the sisters to suck the life-force of the drinker to replenish their youth. Other spells include cursing a victim with immortality, transforming victims into cats, raising the dead, cursing victims with boils and blisters, and numerous others.
Its most important curse was that if in the event the sisters were killed, that should a virgin light the Black Flame Candle on Halloween during a full moon, the witches would return alive for one night unless they suck the life out of a child lest they explode when the sunrise comes.
Despite the fact that it was created to solely serve nefarious purposes, and that nothing good was supposed to come from it, its contents still detailed a confirmed weakness of the Sanderson sisters (which could be used against them): a circle of salt could protect their intended victim from their powers.
After the sisters' deaths, it was last seen in the witches' cottage, opening its eye, and presumably remained there. While Jay and Ernie are still trapped in their cages, the eye on the book's cover opens, indicating the book is still alive, indicating a there's a chance the Sanderson sisters could return somehow.
- The book's description of being bound in human skin is based on the Necronomicon as it appears in the Evil Dead series of films.
- There were three versions of the book created for the film - One with the eye open, one with the eye closed, and one with a remote-controlled eyeball. All three versions are stored in the Disney Archives.