witches

witches - The Witch-Hunt in Europe Superstition and...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–9. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
The Witch-Hunt in Europe Superstition and Skepticism
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Witch-Hunting During the early modern era (1450-1700) at least 40,000 people were executed throughout Europe for being witches. The age of witch panics closely corresponded to that of the Reformation and the Wars of Religion It became an accepted legal theory that certain individuals were capable of doing physical harm through non-physical (supernatural) actions. And these people had to be punished. Both church and civil authorities combined in lending credulity to folk beliefs concerning witchcraft. A combination of a superstitious populace and credulous authorities who had come to accept the reality of witchcraft led to the persecutions.
Background image of page 2
Witch Executions in Germany, 1649
Background image of page 3

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Facts About the Witch-Hunt Satan was believed to work through witches and to grant them power in return for their souls. Elderly women, often widows, had been associated with witchcraft in European folklore going back to the Ancient world. In the era (lasting over two hundred years) of the great witch-hunts the educated and powerful came to accept these stereotypes. Satan was constantly at work in the world. Skepticism was often regarded as collusion with the Devil. Over 80% of the victims of witch-hunters were women. Over half of the accusers were women, as well. This highlights how ingrained the stereotype of the witch was in European culture. The worst persecutions took place in Germany during the Thirty Years War. Frequently areas that experienced religious conflict also endured witch persecutions. Over half of all the people (as many as 25,000) executed as witches died in Germany.
Background image of page 4
An Early Condemnation of Witchcraft “Know that she or he who claims to have the power to break a charm knows as well, be assured, how to work one. When such people say that they wish to cure anyone, do you know what you should do? There is nothing better to do than cry ‘To the fire! To the fire! To the fire!’” Bernadino of Siena - 1427
Background image of page 5

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Witch and Devil and Flying Witch on a Broomstick
Background image of page 6
Flying Witch - Durer
Background image of page 7

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Further Facts about the Witch Hunts “Incredible among us Germans … are the popular superstition, envy, calumnies, back-bitings, insinuations and the like, which being neither punished by the magistrates nor refuted by the pulpit, first stir up suspicion of witchcraft. All the divine judgments which God has threatened in Holy Writ are now ascribed to witches. No longer
Background image of page 8
Image of page 9
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 04/13/2008 for the course HIST 195 taught by Professor Schwamenfeld during the Spring '08 term at IUP.

Page1 / 40

witches - The Witch-Hunt in Europe Superstition and...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 9. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online