A Treatise of Witchcraft

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Published: 1616
Language: English
Wordcount: 26,471 / 90 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 57
LoC Category: D
Downloads: 1,416
Added to site: 2005.12.04
mnybks.net#: 12043
Excerpt

tes+, Vide & Suidam in Augusto, & Athanasium de incarnatione verbi._]

[Footnote g: _De hac ligatione & solutione Diaboli plenissimè August. de Ciuitate Dei, lib. 20 cap. 8._]


_The first Proposition._

It is a _Quære_, though needlesse, whether there be any Witches: for they[a] haue some Proctors who plead a nullitie in this case, perswade themselues, and would induce others to be of the same minde, that there be no Witches at all: but a sort of melancholique, aged, and ignorant Women, deluded in their imagination; and acknowledge such things to be effected by them, which are vnpossible, vnlikely, and they neuer did; and therefore Magistrates who inflict any punishment vpon them, be vnmercifull and cruell Butchers. Yet by the way, and their good leaue, who take vpon them this Apology, all who are conuented vpon these vnlawfull action, are not strucken in yeares; but some euen in the flower of their youth be nuzled vp in the same, and convicted to be practisers

Reviews

Average Rating of 5 from 1 reviews: *****
2015.02.20
Lisa Carr
*****

A nasty little bit of history from the 1600s. The prose is a bit archaic, in that the spelling is all over the place and the u and the v are often interchanged, but the reader can usually vunderstand that Diuell means devil.
The author makes a strong case that there are witches, drawing on such unerring sources as the Bible (naturally), ancient pagan, Jewish, and Christian philosophers, conclusive court evidence from witch trials, and rumor and superstition. All statements are footnoted, and all the footnotes are in Latin.
One can learn that the reason more women than men are witches is that a)they are stupider, b) they are more gullible and so believe lies more easily, and c) their skin is thinner and softer, so easier for the devil to bite.
It is an exhaustive bit of research, and complete claptrap.


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