English Witchcraft, 1560-1736: Early English demonological works

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J. A. Sharpe, Richard M. Golden
Pickering & Chatto, 2003 - History - 2896 pages
This broadly chronological collection charts the change in attitudes to witchcraft during the period 1560-1736, which culminates in the educated debate on the reality of witchcraft and the gradual decline in belief in witches and association phenomena, leading to the repeal of the English witchcraft statute. The religious and political tensions brought about by the Civil War and Restoration are evident within these texts. During this time there were many instances of witch persecutions, and well over 100 works were written on the subject. Events like the only mass witch trial to take place in England, instigated by an obscure gentleman called Matthew Hopkins in East Anglia, sparked the publication of a number of tracts by supporters of witch hunts and by the sceptics. These volumes also include early demonological works, trial pamphlets and final debates.

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William Perkins A Discourse of the Damned Art of Witchcraft so Jarre

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About the author (2003)

Sharpe is Professor of History at York University in Great Britain.

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