Ritual sex between the High Priestess and High Priest of a Wiccan coven performed to embody the passion of the Goddess and the God and ensure the fertility of the land. Most Gardnarian Wiccans and their offshoots incorporate the Great Rite at least symbolically as a part of all their Sabbats.

The Great Rite may be performed in front of the rest of the coven, or the leaders may seek privacy in another room, or the leaders may do it after the ritual has ended and everyone else has gone home, or the ritual may be done entirely symbolically usually by inserting an athame into a chalice. Some Traditions require the Great Rite as part of the initiation to higher degrees which is why its a good idea to talk about these matters prior to joining a coven. Covens with even the tiniest amount of integrity will discuss these matters openly with prospective coven members.

Gardnarian magic is based on the sexual polarity between the Goddess and the God; thus, all members of a strictly traditional coven are expected to have a working partner of the other gender, and while heterosexual sex is not required between working partners, it is not unexpected either. Some liberalization of these ideas have occurred in the last fifty years, and there are now Wiccan covens which accept a broader range of sexual expression between their members from none to heterosexual monogamy to homosexual monogamy to polyamory.

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