New England's Place in the History of Witchcraft

Front Cover
The Society, 1911 - Witchcraft - 35 pages

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Selected pages

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 28 - ... he could take away a man's life, though in truth he could do no such thing : yet this were a just law made by the state, that whosoever should turn his hat thrice, and cry buz, with an intention to take away a man's life, shall be put to death.
Page 24 - If any man or woman be a witch (that is, hath or consulteth with a familiar spirit), they shall be put to death.8 3.
Page 34 - Worshippers of light ancestral make the present light a crime ; — Was the Mayflower launched by cowards, steered by men behind their time? Turn those tracks toward Past or Future, that make Plymouth...
Page 24 - Archangel next coming, shall use practise or exercise any invocation or conjuration of any evil and wicked spirit, or shall consult, covenant with, entertain, employ, feed, or reward any evil and wicked spirit to or for any intent or purpose...
Page 9 - The witch has abandoned Christianity, has renounced her baptism, has worshipped Satan as her God, has surrendered herself to him, body and soul, and exists only to be his instrument in working the evil to her fellow-creatures, which he cannot accomplish without a human agent.
Page 4 - The belief in witchcraft was practically universal in the seventeenth century, even among the educated; with the mass of the people it was absolutely universal. 4. To believe in witchcraft in the seventeenth century was no more discreditable to a man's head or heart than it was to believe in spontaneous generation or to be ignorant of the germ theory of disease.
Page 15 - The remark," says Professor Kittredge (note 42), "that Calvinism was especially responsible for witch-trials is a loose assertion which has to reckon with the fact that the last burning for witchcraft at Geneva took place in 1652." Who may have ventured such a remark I do not know, and I have no wish to defend it. I should be slow to believe that Calvinism could be more responsible for witch-trials than was the Dominican theology in its own time and place, or than Lutheranism in the lands where it...
Page 13 - I fear it would lose no time in falling under the same stigma. quisitors to put into their mouths—tales published through the reading of these confessions to the crowds which gathered at sentence and execution or diffused through the no less effective medium of common gossip —was a most potent popularizer of the delusion. And, though from both these sources, through written book and word of mouth, there filtered slowly into England all this teaching, it was not till after the middle of the sixteenth...
Page 35 - The old witch-mania was no mere survival of the Middle Ages. It was born and came to its prime in centuries which saw the greatest burst of Christian civilization. If I would have History unflinching, it is not because I think we are better than our fathers. It is because deep in ourselves I feel still stirring the impulses which led to their mistakes. It is because I fear that they who begin by excusing their ancestors may end by excusing themselves.

Bibliographic information