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Countess Von Marburg

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A true queen is not made. She is born in the Earth's womb, and destined to rule forever.

Countess Palatine Ingrid Von Marburg is the main antagonist of Season 2 of the WGN America thriller TV Series, Salem.

The Countess is merely the current identity of a very ancient witch who has crept the higher ranks of the aristocracy to add power and wealth to her boundless wickedness. She is the mother of Sebastian Von Marburg and Anne Hale. Her goal is to bring the devil on earth by finishing the Grand Rite.

She was portrayed by Lucy Lawless.



Countess Von Marburg is the last of what she call "true witches". As attested by herself throughout the centuries she has assumed various identities including Hecate, Medea and Bathory, three names quite renowned for their connection with Witchcraft. Two of them date back to the classical period thus we can infer that the Countess is very old. Tituba tells Mary Sibley that the way the hag kissed her is the Countess' signature and that the Countess was the end of the Scythians, the Magyars and the Roma from the Old World. Only a handful of the old breeds survive, hidden in burrows or scattered like dust on the wind.

It was later revealed by Increase Mather that the Countess is quite possibly one of the oldest witches alive, considering that she was a young girl during the time Luficer fell. According to various legends, the Countess was one of the first who made a pact with the Devil, his first lover and whorshiper, and thus one of the first witches in history. Her only known weakness is a wooden coffin where her remains, as well as a vital part of her soul were stored, enabling her infinite life. 

Season Two

While staying in Boston , the Countess has bewitched a member of the Council of the Puritans, such Mr. Eliot, so he relates what was said in the meetings of the Elders Puritans. The witch is in fact interested in finding out who is behind the Great Rite realized in Salem and in addition she's extremely curious about the actual death of Increase Mather, revealing that the witch hunter kept her in the past to make herself the Grand Rite . To prove it, a scar shaped like a hand on her shoulder.

The woman comes to Cotton Mather's house, bringing with her a basket of food pretending very well the part of charitable woman who takes care of the poor unfortunate boy without a mother or a wife to take care of his needs. The witch is therefore surprised to find Anne Hale. Presenting holding her hand, causing the girl in a trance breaking into her thoughts, or as defined by the same Countess, she's entered in her soul." In this sort of enchanted forest, where Anne is naked in a tub, the Witch reveals his identity as the last of the True Witches and that in the course of the centuries she took many names such as Hecate, Medea and Bathory to name a few. Then she starts to question Anne about what is actually happening in Salem. Countess Von Marburg has acknowledged Anne Hale as a blood witch, daughter of John Hale, also a pureblood witch but too cowardly. Threatening the young girl, the Countess affix a mark kissing her violently until Anne'lip bleed, saying that they will meet again soon. Returned to the physical world in the house of Mather, the woman takes leave.

Later, in her boudoir, Countess Von Marburg is in negligee with her son, Sebastian, who exchange incestuous effusions while he brushing her hair, as they discuss how to get to Salem without detection and the role of the Witches of Essex. Sebastian, then, shows to his mother the gift he has done to her. A girl gagged and hidden in the closet. The Countess, then, looks ecstatic, thanking her son before turning to the terrified girl.

The Countess implements again her terrible powers bewitching a girl from the village so that the water tank of The House of the Seven Gables, used that night to prepare Mary Sibely's bath. The Witch of Salem, in fact, is attacked by a spectrum sent by the Countess who tries to drown her and then kiss her to bleed, subtracting information from her unconscious. While comfortably soak in the bathtub of her boudoir, the Countess licks her bloody fingers, snickering satisfied from what she learned about the perpetrator of the Grand Rite.

The Countess and Sebastian are in Marburg's ship talking about the power and beauty of Mary Sibley, while Sebastian nourishes his mother with pomegranate's berries using his fingers to her mouth. The woman is lying in her bath and after a passionate kiss with her son, we find that half of her face horribly disfigured. A young girl hangs from the ceiling and has a collar around her neck that Sebastian turns a crank to drain the blood directly from the girl's neck to the face and breasts of his mother. The Countess and Mary Sibley meet for the first time on the ship Marburg and discuss the effective role of the Queen of the Night and the completion of the Grand Rite. Countess Von Marburg, in fact, raises in Mary the worm of suspicion that the Essex witches haven't treated her with the right respect.

Arrived in Salem, the countess is accepted by the bourgeoisie of the city and from public office. The woman claims to have come to the city to bring relief to the poor souls of Salem suffering from plague and gives food to the community. Countess Mary Sibley makes it clear the intentions of her, including to complete the Great Rite to resurrect their Lord and condemn to eternal damnation citizens of Salem. The countess also several projects for other witches coven: first takes under his wing Mercy Lewis, appearing to her as her "fairy godmother" and showing her the wonders of prodigious bathe in the blood of virgins, a supernatural tonic for the body. The old witch has indeed captured the unfortunate Dollie and kills her along with Mercy to give it to the precedent and her beautiful appearance.

Countess Von Marburg continues to her machinations to get on her side Anne Hale and orders to the young witch to steal John Hale's Book of Shadows from the house of Mary Sibley, at a dinner attended by the elite members of Salem: Magistrate Hathorne, Dr. Wainwright, Rev. Cotton Mather, her son Sebastian, Mary and Anne. During dinner, the Countess communicates telepathically to Mary that she plans to sacrifice all of them because they are a hindrance to their plan to resurrect the Devil. During dinner, John bursts into the dining room and the Countess perceives in the child the presence of the Dark Lord.

While return to the ship with Sebastian, she reveals to the young man that she is willing to put her claws on the child. While Mary ignores the true potential of the Countess, the old witch has sent Mercy Lewis to kidnap the child, John, because the Countess wants to prepare him herself as a vessel to receive the Devil in his body. When Mary discovers that the child has disappeared, she has a confrontation with the Countess, who reveals that she will awake the Devil into John and Mary will be just a mere instrument for achieving the supreme goal.

But Mary also has her trump cards and, after discovering that John Alden is still alive, she reveals to the man the existence of their child and the two weave a plan to save him. While the Countess along with Sebastian is heading into the woods with the child in order to sacrifice him in the crags, Mary threatens the Countess to destroy the relic- the source of the Countess' power- if she wouldn't return the child to her. The Countess is forced to surrender, for the moment.

The ancient witch at this point resorts to another of her ally, the magistrate Hathorne, that she had seduced from the first moment she set foot in Salem. And while the man arrest Mary Sibley on charges of fornication with the doctor Waiwright, now mysteriously disappeared (having been thrown into hell by Sebastian) and the murder of George Sibley, the Countess uses her magic to find the hiding place of the child. The evil witch uses illusions and oldest black magic to seduce John Alden in an alternate dimension, and finds the place in which he keeps hidden his son. The Countess then sends Sebastian to get rid of Alden and retrieve the child. But since Cotton Mather flees with the baby, it will be Anne Hale to secure the child in her secret room at the cottage. At this point the Countess reveals her last card. She is the natural mother of Anne Hale and as Anne is her eldest girl, she will inherit the power from the Countess, as in witchcraft the kingdom passes through the female witches.

Anne is not very convinced, and do not want to give the child to the woman, but rather return him to Mary Sibley. Then the Countess, to convince her daughter, shows her that Mary Sibley held Tituba prisoner for a simple argument. While they are in prison, the Countess offers to Tituba freedom if the cinnamon-skin woman will reveal the secrets of the Essex Hive's stronghold. The Countess reads from the lips of Tituba his suffering, but also of her betrayal of the Hive.

The countess leaves the tar with the corpse of the child Meanwhile, Sebastian deals with Mary and begs her to bend to the will of the Countess. Mary, after fighting to the last, is forced to give up. The whole coven formed by the Marburgs, Tituba, Anne and Mary goes into the woods and performs the supreme ritual. After pouring the blood into a sacred goblet, the Countess sacrifices little John by drowning him in the pool of Hellblood. The Grand Rite is finally completed, after centuries of failed attempts, and Hecate has finally met again with her Lucifer. The woman waking the sleep of her Lord and gather the witches of Salem to pay him homage. However, the Devil has in mind other projects that have nothing to do with the ideas of the Countess. After badly driven away Mercy, by biting the finger she used to indicate the fake witches, also the Countess has a falling out with the girl and the Countess withdrawing the spell that made Mercy beautiful, tracing her back to the previous stage of living-dead, with the burned skin.

When the Devil reveals that he's going to make Mary his Scarlet Queen, the Countess is extremely shocked. In a desperate attempt to win again the love of Lucifer, the Countess hordes a plan with her son, namely to kill Mary, which now wants to commit suicide. The two witches have a fierce battle in the church, with wooden benches and fire flying around the room, along with curses and fists. Sebastian then ask to his half-sister Anne to go to the rescue of their mother, because Mary is about to destroy her, fueled by hatred for what the Countess brought on Earth. Anne then appears in church and conjure the rain, putting out the fire. However, the two women are refusing to satisfy the demands of the death of Mary Sibley.

But it is too late. The Devil discovered the plan of the Countess, and after having received her in his room at the House of the Seven Gables, he kills her brutally, by stabbing the Countless numberless times making her bleed to death under the impassive gaze of Sebastian. The woman tries desperately to have the help of her son, but she dies then wake up trapped in her old mortal coil, helpless and powerless, locked in a coffin, for the rest of her existence.

Physical Appearance


Countess Marburg is a beautiful women who appears to be in her late 40's. She has a slim and tall physique with long dark brown hair, glacial blue eyes, and a pale complexion. As Mary Sibley, she wears clothes of rich fashion, with rich fabrics and adorned with jewelry and accessories that highlight the high social status. 

She has a burn in the shape of a hand on the left shoulder, which was left by Increase Mather 

when the hunter sank his hands in the Hell's pitch to stop the Marburg witches' attempt to complete the Grand Rite. 

The original body of the Countess is kept in a sacred sarchophagus hidden in a parallel dimension. It is a mummified corpse and over the centuries the Countess took several physical aspects, even if the current one seems to be her original appearance.


Manipulative, cunning and deeply luxurious, the Countess has a strong personality, as befits a true witch. Her cruelty is unmatched; she was the first spouse of Satan, the first witch to implement spells of pure perfidy and malice. Seductive and libidinous, wearing sophisticated and refined clothes, somtimes bizarre, as befits the clothing of the nobility of the 17th century. The Countess has a co-dependent relationship with her son Sebastian, with whom she shares even incestuous gestures.

Powers and Abilites

Basic Powers

  • Spell Casting
  • Potion Making

Individual Powers

  • Longevity
  • Dream Walking
  • Telepathy
  • Bilocation
  • Psychometry
  • Hydrokinesis
  • Atmokinesis
  • lllusion Manipulation
  • Teleportation
  • Pyrokinesis
  • Telekinesis
  • Resurrection


Sebastian Marburg

She seems to have an incestuous relationship with her son. Sebastian is totally in love with the mother, but at the same time knows that he himself is essential to the woman, playing well in a twisted emotional relationship.

Mary Sibley

The antagonistic relationship between the two women comes from the fact that the Countess can not stand that a simple half-blood witch has managed to complete the Grand Rite and Mary Sibley does not tolerate anyone undermine its authority as queen of the night.


WGN America's Salem Villains

Mary Sibley | Tituba | Rose Browning | John Hale | Mercy Lewis | Countess Von Marburg | Sebastian Von Marburg | The Hags | Widdershins |

Salem Residents
Increase Mather | George Sibley | Wendell Hawthorne | Reverend Lewis |

Otherworldly Entities
The Devil

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