There is this toad ( bufo bufo ) that is native in Europe, and it is most common to see it, from Siberia all the way to the shores of the Mediterranean beaches in Portugal, and he is known and associated to witch-craft in Medieval times, but also with Shamanism in the long history of Europe and in particular with the totem spirit. This toad has a very simbological meaning which i am about to talk about.
The totemic significance of this toad, it comes first with its connection with the underground swamps, caves and dark waters, and so the toad is the inhabitant of the marshes of the underworld. However this toad is also living well in the surface waters and in land, passing freely between these realms, just like the shaman does, passing the boundaries between this world and the other. The frog or toad is a shamanic creature, although symbolicaly, that represents this passage between dimensions. To the Celts the swamps and waterfalls where a passage to the underworld.
In Portugal and Spain, those in any pagan initiation to become something more then just a communpeasant, were marked, some say by the horned god, with a toad symbol or a toad’s footprint.
In the medieval times, the mark of the Devil when the Christianity came into Europe, was a toad or a frog, and he had a coat of arms marked with 3 toads.
In the Pyrenees, people used to say that the witches could be identified by a mark of footprint of a toad in their left eye.
Any frog or toad that jumped over the foot of someone, that would be a sign of certain death, this may be one of the reasons why gypsys are afraid of frogs, because the gypsys were a tribe of people called Romani, that came from India into Europe, and they were not used to listen such tales and folklore somysterious, magical and mystical.
In The Slavic countries, the mushrooms that can’t be eaten, are called Zabaci Huby which means toad-mushroom, popular affinities between hallucinatory fungi and toads, point to an ancientawareness, of the presence of psychotropic toxins in the skin of a toad.