HIST 103 PAPER 2 final

HIST 103 PAPER 2 final - Brad Tradonsky Professor ONiell...

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Brad Tradonsky Professor O’Niell Hist 103 11/8/11 The Double Standard Experienced by Witches, The Attitude of the Town In early modern Europe the natural and supernatural world were viewed as inherently linked. Not only did people living in the 16 th and 17 th centuries think that people could connect with this so-called supernatural world, but believed that the supernatural world could directly affect the everyday natural world. Therefore the ability to discern who could connect to the natural world and how they did so became a matter of importance during the time period—a period filed with religious change, government centralization and scientific inquiry. Despite this increased need to differentiate between who was innocent and who was guilty of witchcraft, suspected witches were hardly able to get a fair trial because of their social disposition. The recordings that comprise The Trial of Temple Anneke illustrate how the double standard experienced by witches on trial during the early modern period stemmed from witches’ marginalized societal role and their assumed connection with the devil. It is imperative that we determine that it was socially acceptable for people to go to witches for help yet it was frowned upon for witches to use magic to help before we can examine the link between witches’ place in society and the previously described double standard. In order to demonstrate this we must show that the people who sought out or utilized Temple Anneke’s magic were punished less severely than Temple Anneke. Luckily, there is an abundance of evidence to support this claim. For starters, there is the mere fact that some of the people that pursued Temple Anneke’s help—such as Hennig Roleffes, who asked Anneke to help cure sheep being affected by a plague in his town of Harxbuttle, and Autor Bahrensdorff, who willingly accepted the Temple’s advice regarding his lost horses—were never
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punished by the court or threatened with torture(pg.8). Heinrich Cordes, who “sent for Temple Anneke [so that she could help his child who had been crying for
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2012 for the course HIST 130 taught by Professor ? during the Fall '11 term at USC.

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HIST 103 PAPER 2 final - Brad Tradonsky Professor ONiell...

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