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Frazer's brief excursus on the ‘witchery of music’ is the starting-point for a discussion of the role of music in the eastern Orthodox (Byzantine) and western Roman Catholic (Latin) Christian traditions, with reference to a region of central Europe where these traditions have co-existed for more than a thousand years. The Greek Catholic Church provides a case of syncretism within one and the same religion. This ‘hybrid’ Church has complicated the religious landscape since it first appeared on the scene in this region in the late sixteenth century, but it has not substantially modified the east-west dichotomy that dominates both in local models and in influential external perceptions. The Greek Catholics later became strongly associated with the Ukrainian national movement, and their re-emergence in the post-socialist period has again been a source of conflict between Ukrainians and Roman Catholic Poles. Sacred music remains an important marker of group differences, but this boundary is evidence of complex social and political processes rather than a ‘civilizational’ divide between East and West.