Uv-^-

h''^ J

o

la

\
\

^ .

.

.

^ READING FOR TRAVELLERS. .

" The Lender. "Knowledge and amusemeut are very happDy blended together. volumes are up to this mark. OLD ROADS AKD NEW EGADS." The . somewhat quaint. The publishers have acted wisely in calling to their aid a scholar and a writer of the highest order. "The (jook contains little more than a hundred pages. The. we think we may safely predict a very extensive popularity for the enterprise. the series will be by far the best of the many which now make Literature the luxury of the poor. . of Reading for Travellers.iicabiiig for Cnibtllcrs." . " If the other volumes of the series are equal to the present in interest and value. printed with large type. poetical and practical. PiaCE OJiE SHILLING. " Old SoluU ami New Roads. charming volume of curious and learned gossip. This book is to the scholar fatigued with trash Uke a bottle of rich Hungarian wine to a man who has been condemned ti) the thin potations of France and the Rheingau.' A first-rate little volume. and the reader who finds his acquiiintance with the history of roads increaied at the journey. such as would have Lamb by its fine scholarly tone and its discursive wealth.es of railway reading with which we have met. The narrative is by no means a mere dry record of facts and dates. NOTICES OF THE PRESS.) No. partieularly the preface. Chapman and HaU have re-entered the field of Railway Literaand have very fittingly commenced their series of ' Beading for TraveOers with a graphic historical sketch of Old lioadu and Netc Roads. and it reads like one of old Montaigne's Essays. JUST PUBLISHED. and just the thing for a railway ride. It is at once scholarly and popular in style and contents yet free from the slightest tinge of pedantry or afifeotation. ' Leicestershire Mercury. " Messrs. Daily News." — ' The ture. but fuU of amusing and instructive reading. The Economist. . " Exactly the book for the amusement of a man of education. and might be read during the journey by the express train between London and Brighton but so suggestive is every page. Atlas. I. The author has collected from all manner of curious and out-of-the-way sources materials for his book. London." riveted Charles If the other " A The Gardeners' Chronicle. It is abundantly diversified and reUeved with illustrative anecdotes and sprightly observations— philosophy and pleasantry combining with genuine eruditiou to make this one of the most useful and entertaining of the volun-. (Chapman and HaU." ." The Gateshead Observer. "This is a pleasant book. wiU also find his available fund of anecdote augmented. Lively and learned." end of his The Literary Gazette. that an intelligent and imaginative reader will not reach the end till the book has been many an hour in his hands.

.MAGIC WITCHCRAFT.

.

. 193.MAGIC WITCHCRAFT ' Somnia. partentaque Thessala rides ?" Uor. Nocturnos lemures. a. ! LONDON CHAPMAN AND HALL. terrores magicos. Epkt. PICCADILLY. 2. 1852. sagas. miracula.

FRinTSD BY JOHX EXir/AlID TAXLOB. . LITTLB Ql'BEK STEEET.

the foundation of it is in some way con- nected with those deep verities upon which rest also the roots of philosophy and religion. implies a dogma or a system of practice standing upon some basis of fact or truth and however vain or noxious the superstructure may be. by very etymology. tails its For gross and painful as the de- of superstition may be. affect and such alone can the opinions of any in mankind general. yet superstition. tree From one soil spring originally the which yields good fruit and the plant which . We have long wished that some English or foreign prize for university would offer a a history of The records of human opinion would contain few chapters more instrucMagic and Witchcraft.PREFACE. is ever the imitation or caricature of some grand truth. tive than one which should deal competently with the Black Art. at For a grand time essentially error.

have been exempt fi'om it. Witchcraft. etc. So universal and more is the belief in spiritual influences. . is The very discernment of the causes of error its a step towards the discovery of opposite. man. impregnated with the germs of a corrupt vitality. tude afterwards to put faith in the formed. by no very circuitous route. then polluted. was the parent of those arts. and finally. and the impiu'c. especially in their malignant influences. drew their professors at first and the multievil. are little JNIagic the de- and Witchcraft more than the religious instincts of man- kind. that no race of men. The bewildennents of the mind of fidly analysed. distils deadly poison. under the several appellations of Magic. human of the race rendered Jewish and re- Christian schemes and the corruption of true verence for the Good.PREFACE. the Beautiful.. to the science of chemistry the adoption of false gods by the majority of the necessary the dispensations . Alchemy led. when course of its afford a clue to the movements from the right track. Sorcery. and the Holy. meets in the us in the remote antiquity of Asiatic comparatively recent barbarism of the American . It life. all first inverted. or at least enable us to detect the point at which began the original separation between Truth and Error. like corrupted matter. no region of the globe. which. no period of time.

they stained the serenity of nature with the deified attributes of war . The Chaldean erred when. in the creeds of all the nations who branched off thousands of years ago eastward and westward from their Caucasian cradle. in this respect. No with nation. in the myths. indeed. can reproach another nation its addiction to magic without in an equal itself. he perverted astronomy into astrology : the Egyptian erred when he represented the omnipresence of the Deity by the ubiquity of animal worship : the Hindoo erred when. erred in their conversion of the indivisible unity of the Demiourgos or World. in their silent and solitary forests. having conceived the idea of an incarnation. the observances. degree condemning All the varieties of man- kind have.aborigines. he clothed with flesh and fleshly attributes the members of his mon- strous pantheon : the Kelt and Teuton erred when.Creator . erred alike at different periods of their social existence. and the more settled and cities civilized races who built and inhabited the of the ancient world. and the dialects of nations who have no other affinity with one another than the mere form of man. and all accordingly come under the same condemnation of making and loving a tisfied lie. dissa- vidth simple observation of the heavenly bodies through the luminous atmosphere of his plains.

or endeavoured to the real scope and dimensions of the subject of jMagic and Witchcraft —not it however with any pm-pose in so small a volume as the offer of expatiating upon present one. We have stated. The sub- belongs to larger volumes. and since Paganism under forms was the corruption of religion. and to maturer learning and meditatjon. and Witchcraft in its turn the corruption of Paganism. In the pages which follow we only a few remarks upon theories or modes of belief which in remote or in nearer ages have affected the creeds and the conduct of mankind. an fail inquiry into the seeds of this evil fruit cannot to he also in some measure an investigation of the very ' incunabula' of human error.into an antkropomorpliic system of several gods. ject. in extenso. state. . But the very uuiversality of the error points to for it in the recesses of the all its some common ground human heart.

.CONTENTS. The Legendary Lixeifer .

.

Magicians. translated in extenso.Counsellor to the Grand Duke of Hesse. By G. of Magic.MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. An from title amusing work appeared tlie at Mainz. Ghosts. which appeared many years This book of the worthy Church-Coimsellor rather a singular one : is it is not a history of Magic. Horst. and Necromancy. supported in a great * Since they were written. Sii' measure by Witclicraft' has been published. and Witch Trials. Church. and Spectral Appearances. the : of whicli. historical notices. a Walter Scott's Demonology and book replete with interesting . but a sort of spiiitual periodical. runs thus "The Magical Library. Demons. or magazine of infernal science. in 1826." The following pages formed a rc\iew of this work. Theurgy. Witches. pen of " Herr Kirchenratli" Horst. or. C.

are many of them half- and would not walk through a like to pay. to from Jamblichus and Porphyry down Glamil and the Abbe Fiard. are made plain by which its whole bearings and distances enough for the use of infant schools. hke Germany. as well known as the course of the Niger fault if must be the traveller's own he does not find his exit from Avernus as and it easy as its entrance has proverbially been since Vii-gil. churchyard at night. we can at present afford to glance who are inclined to make the the Counsellor may be taken as an intelligent travelling companion. that the whole flistrict is now about . according to the best authorities. It is only at however. has parcelled out the terri- toiy of the Prince of the Air into sundry regular di^-isions. however. who. circles. affect occasionally to write in a Sadducee vein. contributions from persons of a ghostly turn of mind. drawn by these intelli- . although they believers at heart. well acquainted with the road. one of the provinces of the Inferno. adopting sometliing of a similar arrangement. into and Mr. the days of The picture. and distinct. Dante divided hell. except for a consideration larger than wliich it we shoidd The field over travels is too extensive. In fact his work is so methodical and the geography of the infernal regions so clearly laid do^Ti. Horst. for us to attempt to follow the author throughout his elaborate subdivisions.4 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. that though grand for those torn'.

with the exception of some practical applications of chemistry.' in wliich the poUtical system of Lucifer's dominions is examiaed. entitled Mrrakel. Dionysius the Areopagite indeed is not more exact in his calendar of the celestial hierarchy. oppressively hot. Perhaps these treatises are the common parents of the modern ' Blue Books. is The wards.THE LEGENDARY LUCIFER. from Faust doAvnand the face of the country apparently a good deal like that be- tween Birmingham and Wolverhampton.' an ahle ' . who is a sort of Delolme in matters infernal. In the departments of the administration are by no means well arranged there is no proper is. has treatise on the subject. are constantly jostled and interfered with by * Faustus. abounding with furnaces and coal-pits. gent spiritual travellers is 3 by no means calculated to impress us with a high notion of the dominions of the Prince of the Air. division of labour. potical. from the few specimens we are favoured in the Zauber-Bibliothek.'^ and others of the ministry. " Mooned Ashtaroth. shamefully neglected.und Wunder-Buch. of composition with which Literature is evidently at a low ebb. who. and the con- sequence that Beelzebub. agi'ce. as all of them. or that the personnel of liis majesty or his government are prepossessing. The government seems des- but subject to occasional explosions on the part of the more influential spirits concerned in fact. according to the theory of the constitution^ are entitled to precedence. the executive.Kimst. climate. and the sciences. auch der dreifache Hollen Zwang genannt. oder der schwartze Eabe.

are we see no evidence of his being personally addicted to bad as possible. there is much diaboHeal eruchtion. vol. iii. the reigning monarch. and in the Scandinavian mythologers. Common readers are apt to believe is that Satan occupies that dignityf. has the command of sixty legions. contained in Faust's Black Eaven. with this exception. etc." See ^\^liter. as might be expected. he appears m a sumlar character " The Ranger. and only shows. The standing teers army is considerable*. The hints given as to the personal appearance and conduct of Lucifer." The morals of as Lucifer. Mepliistopheles. that * Eeginald Scott's of Amazeroth. who are continually thrusting in their claws where they are not called for. in wliich very learned. ' Discoverie of Witchcraft' contains an army-list or muster-roll of the infernal forces. ' as they will find by con- sulting a list of the Infernal Privy Council for 1669. Thus the Duke who seems to be a sort of brigacher-general. No- thing heard however of the navy. and from the ominous silence wliich our geographers preserve on this point. where he is mentioned for the fii-st time.4 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. besides the volun- by which is it is continually augmented. are not flattering. " that they have no true notions of hell. it is easy to see that water is a rare element in this quarter. though now forhis deposition — gotten work." or " Eovuig Spirit of Tartarus. Asmodeus told Don when he fell into a similar mistake about Beelzebub. but this a great error. Aziel. It is singular that both in the book of Job.. and other forward second-rate spii'its. . + Satan is a mere tlui'd-i-ate spirit. as Clcofas. Marbuel. Etymologicon.' But we are not told the exact date of from his primacy.

At least all his printed speeches are bad. tered personal chastisement to his servants. and therefore that His might. His licentious habits. dered very mediocre. and having never risen even to the rank of a corporal. who have their enlisted in his service on the promise of high pay and promotion. and applying them vigorously to their shoulders and he has more than once adminisspits. be consi- we are afraid the ingenious selection from his papers. all the world knows that Ernulphus was but a type His jokes are aU practical and of a low of him. when is they neglected to keep an appointment. Yet. notorious cheat . tested tious the amusements consists in constantly pulling on which his witches are riding. and Bodinus. published by Jean Paid*. Delrio. order. from these narratives. from beneath them. in the commencement. however. . that he had paid their bounty in tin sixpences. are atby many a scandalous chronicle in Sprenger. on putting them talent hands into their pockets. and Censor. One of his most facedrinking. must be a literary forgery. having foimd. and for swearing. He has always had a fancy for appearing in masquerade. but generally ending in smoke. He a many enterprising young men. flashy enough. Lucifer * Auswahl aug des Teufels Papieren. no doubt.THE LEGENDARY LUCIFER. and there is an utter want of dignity in most of his proceedings. . like Cato the may have taken to study late in life.

fair contest but beat him all to nothing in a of ribaldry and abuse. he was at one time rather and where. Dunstan. kept no terms with him when he began to crack hazel-nuts in his bedroom like Haroun fond. Alraschid. however. And. ornamented with ribbons and blue stockings. did style. yet some commentator of the year 2150 will perhaps suggest that it was ' Old Harry's 3Tammon. for a whole winter. as we know. for his partial biographers to disguise the fact. Lotichius took the trouble to compose a Latin entitled poem on ' the subject of lus triumphal entry. at the "Wartbm'g. but in a very splen]\Iilan. he has kept pretty much withindoors after nightfall. of which. in its day.b MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. Luther. we learn from the Swedish witches. he generally figured in a grey coat and red small-clothes. whom he has attempted to trip up by laying his tail in their way.' have seen worse " conjectural emendations. besides leaving St. in the disguise of a professor. he has more than once received a sound di'ubbing from honest people. ." We t Colloquia Mensalia. A book Mammon' had some reputation name indeed is The acknow- ledged author's Harris . since his affair with St. late as 1626.. Lupus shut him up for a whole night in a pitcher of cold water. an indelible blot of ink upon his red smalls f. in title under the of the Didce of Mammon"^. So he lived incog. Oratorio super fatalibus hoc tempore Acaclemi- anun periculis : 1631. * Lotichius. once delivered a course of lectures on magic at Salamanca. in fact. It is in vain. into which he had (as he thought. that in his nocturnal excursions.

where he commonly sues. he was faii'ly laughed out of court. t Ihid. de Voragine. This however^ considering his ordinary temperatxirej must have been an have brought on church. a person of any is talent." (Brugmann. in retm-n I offer of his services. 123. a hole in the waU. Anthony. § leg. who having agreed that the devil should have him. See Southey's pithy and profitable tale of ' Eleemon.) He was hoaxed in a stLU more ingenious manner by Nostradamus. a match for him are niunerous cases in the books. " deriso explosoque Dtemone. J Or even a bishop. that it was long before he ventured to appear in society againf. leg. and non-suited in the tical courts. p. left directions that he should be buried m. act of kindness^ which should St. St. 290. that his * Legenda Aurea Jacob. . jesty. 21. has been unexpectedly defeated by an ingeecclesias- nious saving clause in the bond. if he was bm-ied either in the church or out of it. Lupus the censure of the for a very polite .' In the case of St. spat in his face which hurt his feelings so much. or a Sinner Saved. And al- though in his many transactions with mankind he is constantly trying to secure some unfair advan- tage. Finally. with the hope that the saint would swallow him unawares'^. attempting to apprehend the person of a debtor. Vita Lydvinse. particularly if been bred a lawyer J. with costs §.THE LEGENDARY LUCIFEE. in he has and there which his ma. Sometimes person. / cunuingly) conveyed himself. he had overlooked. which. like Shylock. we infer from the Mora Trials. when he pleaded his case in and thought it a clear one. Lydvina.

So. crushed beneath its car. . while the superstitious di'cams of former times are regarded as mere speculative insanities. and claimed his bond. for in 1669 he was extremely ill in though he got over the attack for a time. . The monk always but in an unlucky hour Satan caught him as fast as a top with his head between the sheets of a sermon. An Indian deity. general health must have suffered from the climate. the persons who were about him thought breaking up. Sweden. and by bleedwas ing and an antiphlogistic regimen. or been and our sense of the ridiculous subsides into aversion and horror. the subject. Such is the grotesque aspect of the legendary Lucifer and his court.» MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. in the case of the in a chair monk who was to Uve so long as he slept abstained from sleeping between sheets. — example. But restore to the darkness of its own hideous temple. we for a may as. which a coui'se of dsemono- logy presents to us ! But though we have thus spoken with levity of these gross and palpable conceptions of the e^dl principle. for moment be amused with -was the gainer in the wild incoheren- however he such equivocal compacts. atti- with tude. and that he was his constitution still in a dying way. must be a ludicrous its we has also its serious side. first impression produced by such a one. and though un- doubtedly the farrago fear. wild distorted shape and grotesque appears merely ridiculous its when separated from accessories and \iewed by daylight in a it museum. bring back to our recollection the victims that have bled upon its altar.

"mere if storehouses for devils to dance in. that the learned and the beautiful. in the shape of evil passions. and has changed his tactics entirely since the days of the " For Satan ' MaUeus Maleficarum. every — feeling disappears except that of astonishment that such things could be. influence to the stake male and female. that this was no dead faith^ but one operating on the whole being of society." always a useful check to the pride of the human mind. to look to those delusions which have darkened it.' is now wiser than before. as Dr. or cruelties scarcely less than murder . his avatar must in probability be made in a different form.SOURCES OF SUPERSTITION. urging on the mildest and the wisest to deeds of murder. however more especially to . And Still tempts by making rich it is — not making poor. It is true that the current of it was human opinion seems if now to set in a different direction. Francis Our brains are no Hutchinson says of Bodi- nus.'' and the influence of the great enemy is still as active as before on earth. were devoted by and the scaffold. young and its old. and humiliation at the thought that the delusion was as lasting as imiversal. 9 out but when we reflect that of these hideous misconceptions of the principle of evil arose the belief in witchcraft . he at least keeps personally in the back- ground. is and that the evil spirit of persecution again to re-apall pear on earth. cies of the patients . longer.

and by means of which angelic influences might be always ascending and descending upon the heart of man. come swarming up . all esta- the horrors of those tempestuous times flowed as a natural consequence." and from these theoretical opinions. in their earthy cover. such as have originated in feelings in themselves exalted. and laudable. any Avaveriug on his part was con- . unfortimately. The wish to raise ourselves above the visible world. the belief in witchcraft and its consequences. call. Such is unquestionably the case in regard to one of the gloomiest chapters in the history of human error. once blished and acted upon. mth spirits of the better order.10 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. involved also a similar lielief as to the possibility of establishing a free trade with the subterranean powers^ " Who lurk in ambush. For thus the kingdoms of brought into open contest every one's mercenaries. the supposition of this actual and bodily intercourse it upon as a sort of Jacob's ladder. And. Men looked by which they were to estabhsh a communication between earth and heaven. But. swift to hear oui' spells. seemed at first calculated to exercise only a beneficent influence on the mind. and to connect ourselves with beings supposed to occupy a higher ranli in creation. it light : and darkness were Satan was ready at if to send out his spirits like Swss became equally necessary for the true believer to rise in arms against him with fire and sword.

MONKISH SUPERSTITION.
strued into apostasy, and
to be persecuted himself
to
lie

11

Avho did not choose

was driven in self-defence

become a persecutor. The grand postulate of direct diabolical agency being once assumed and quietly conceded on all
hands, any absurdity whatever was easily engrafted

on
to

it. Satan beiug thus brought home, as it were, men's business and bosoms, every one speculated

light

on his habits and demeanour according to his own and soon the insane fancies of minds crazed
;

by natm^e, disease, or misfortunes, echoed and repeated from all sides, gathered themselves into a
code or system of
the
faith,

which, being instilled into

mind with the

earliest

rudiments of instrucits

tion, fettered

even the strongest intellects with

The mighty minds of Luther, of Calvin, and of Knox, so quick in detecting error, so undaunted and merciless in exposing it,
baleful influence.

yielded tamely to
Sii-

its thrall

;

the upright and able
of death, in

Matthew Hale passed sentence

1664, on two poor

and Sir Thomas
Errors,''
trial,

accused of witchcraft, Browne, the historian of " Vulgar
as a witness
fits

women

who was examined
it

gave

as his opinion that the

on the under

which the patients had laboured, though natural in themselves, were " heightened by the Devil cooperating with the malice of the witches, at whose instance he did the villanies !" and apparently on
this e\idence chiefly did the conviction proceed.

Neither, in

fact,

were the incongruities and

12

MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT.

inconsistencies of the witch-creed of the time so

might at first sight appear, to awaken men^s minds to the radical insanity of the belief. The dash of the ludicrous, which mingles itself with almost all the exploits of Satan and
calculated^ as they
his satellites, grew, naturally enough, out of the

monkish conception of Satan, and might be supposed not inconsistent with the character of a set
of beings whose proceedings of course could not

be expected to resemble those either of
angels.

men

or

him

:

in
"

The monkish Satan has no dignity about soul and body he is low and deformed.
occhi ha vermigli, e la barba unta ed atra,
'1

Grii

E
His apish

ventre largo, ed unghiate

le

mani,

G-rafSa gli spirti, gli scuoja, ed isquatra*."

tricks

and satyr -like gambols were

suffi-

ciently in imison with the idea of a spirit with

boundless malice but limited powers, grinning in
despite

where he could not

injure,

and ridiculing

those sacred rites the power of which he was compelled to acknowledge and obey. to his infernal flock,

the sacrament
his

;

Hence he preaches and mocks the institution of wreaks his native malice even on
his deluded victims in their distress, de-

own adherents; plunges
them

into misery, or deserts
prives

them of the rewards he has promised
;

to

them

plagues and torments the good, but cowers
is

whenever he

boldly resisted, and
* Inferno, canto vi.

is

at once dis-

MONKISH SUPERSTITION.
comfited by any one
the thunders

13

who

wields

by commission

of heaven.

Writers of fiction in

general have seldom seized these features of his

character;

indeed hardly any one has done

so^

except Hofiman, who, in most of his supernatural
pictures, has painted

him not with

the grandeur

and sullen gloom of the

fallen archangel,

but with

the coarse and comic malice of the spirit of the

middle ages, and has thus, on the whole, deepened
the real horror of his goblin scenes by the infusion
of these outbreakings of mirth, just as the frightful
effect

of an execution would be increased, if the

criminal, instead of joining in the devotions, were

suddenly to strike up a lively air from the top of
the ladder.

a natm-al sequence of the
exil principle,

But whether the delusion of witchcraft was thus monkish notions of an
and of the almost universal persua-

sion that intercourse with a higher order of beings

was possible
its

for

man, no one can

cast a glance over

history "without being satisfied that the compre-

hensive nature of its iafluence, and its long duration,

were owing to penal laws and prosecutions. It adds one more to the long hst of instances which prove
that there
ing,
is

is

which

will

no opinion, however absurd and revoltnot find believers and martyrs, if it
the subject of persecution.

once

made

From

the

earliest ages of Christianity it is certain the belief

existed, and must occasionally have been employed by strong minds as an instrument of terror to the

with one exception*.^ ' jMalleus which was intended as a theological and juridical commentary on the Bull. The original edict of persecution was enforced by the successive bulls of the infamous Alexander VI. than the race of witches seems at once to increase and multiply. Of tm-ies the extent of the horrors which for two cen- and a half followed. iii. in the history of But of the extent of these judicial murders. and one or two remarkable relations from our own annals or those of the Continent may occur to our recollection.14 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. the ]\Ialeficarum. . 1572. in 1494 (to whom Satan might indeed have addressed the remon* The vol. have but a very imperfect conception we remem- ber as in a dream that on this accusation persons were occasionally burnt. and a regular form of process for the trial of this ofience been laid down in that unparalleled performance. these were rather rehgious pro- p. But secutions against supposed heretics. and the crime of witchcraft only introduced as aggravating their offences. our readers we suspect . in 1484 stirred up the slumber- ing embers into a flame. trials at Arras. Yide Monstrelet's Chronicle. little demonology No sooner has Innocent placed his commission of fire and sword in the hands of Sprenger and his brethren. weak but still the frame of society itself was not shaken. . nor. no one who has not dabbled a has any idea. in 1459. does the crime begin to make any figure in history till the Bull of Innocent VIII. till it replenishes the earth. 84 : Paris.

MONKISH SUPERSTITION.

15

strance "et tu Brute \"), of Leo X. in 1521^ and of

Adrian VI. ia 1522.

Still

the only effect of these
evil

commissions was to render the
formidable^ tOl at last, if

daUy more

we

are to believe the tes-

timonies of contemporary historians, Europe was
little

better than a large subm'b or outwork of

Pandemonium.

One-half of the population was
Delrio
tells

either bewitching or bewitched.

us

in his preface that

500 witches were executed in

Geneva in three months, about the year 1515.

A

thousand, says Bartholomseus de Spina, were executed in one year in the diocese of Como, and they

went on burning

annum
900.

for

1580 to In France the multitude of executions about 1520 is incredible; Danseus, in the first part of his dialogue concerning witches, calls it " infinitum
pene veneficorum numerum.^^

at the rate of a hundred per some time after. In Lorraine, from 1595, Remigius boasts of having burned

The well-known
he
associates.

sorcerer, Trois Echelles, told Charles IX., while

was

at Poitou, the

names of 1200 of his

This calculation

is

according to Mezeray^s more

reasonable version of the story, for the author of
the Journal du Regne de Henri III.^ makes the number 3000, and Bodinus, not satisfied even with this allowance, adds a cypher, and makes the total return of witches denounced by Trois EcheUes 30,000, though he does at the same time express some doubt as to the correctness of this account.
'

In Germany, to which indeed the bull of Inno-

16

MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT.

cent bore particular reference, this
to a degi'ce almost inconceivable.

pla^e raged

derborn, "Wurtzburg, and Ti'cves
seats,

Bamberg, Pawere its chief
a half after the

though

for a

centmy and

introduction of the trials under the commission no

quarter of that great empire was free from
ful influence.

its

bane-

It

would be wearisome and

revolt-

ing to go through the details of these atrocities

but " ab uno disce omnes.^^

A catalogue

of the ex-

ecutions at AVurtzbui'g for the period from 1627 to

February 1629, about two years and two months,
printed by Hauber in the conclusion of his third volume of the ' Acta et Scripta Magica.' It is reguis

larly di^aded into twenty-nine burnings,

and constating at

tains the

names of 157 persons, Hauber
is

the same time that the catalogue

not complete.

It is impossible to peruse this catalogue A^'ithout

horror.

The

greater

part of

it

consists of old
it

women

or foreign travellers, seized,

woidd ap-

pear, as foreigners

were

at Paris dui-ing the days
:

of ]\Iarat and Robespierre

it

contains children of

twelve, eleven, ten, and nine years of age, fourteen
A-icars

of the cathedral, two boys of noble families,
little

the two

sons {sblmlein) of the senator Stol;

zenburg; a stranger boy
belin, the

a blind girl; Gobel Ba-

handsomest

girl in

Wurtzburg,
et virgine ceesd

etc.
.'"

" Sanguine placarunt Divos

And

yet, fr-ightful as this list

of 157 persons

executed in two years appears, the

number

is

not

EXECUTIONS FOR WITCHCRAFT.
(taking the

17

population of Wurtzburg into ac-

Lindheim process from For in that small district, consisting at the very utmost of six hundred inhabitants, thirty persons were condemned and put to death, making a twentieth part of the whole population consumed in four years. How dreadful are the results to which these data lead! If we take 157 as a fair average of
count) so great as in the

1660 to 1664.

the executions at "Wurtzburg (and the catalogue
itself states that

the

list

was by no means com-

plete),

the amoimt of executions there in the

course of the century preceding 1628 would be
15,700.

We

know

that from 1610 to 1660 was

trials, and that so late 1749 Maria Renata was executed at Wurtzburg for witchcraft ; and though in the interval between 1660 and that date it is to be hoped that the number of these horrors had diminished, there can be little doubt that several thousands must be added to the amount already stated. If Bamberg, Paderborn, Treves, and the other Catholic bishop-

the great epoch of the witch
as

rics,

whose

zeal

equal contingent,

was not less ardent, furnished an and if the Protestants, as we

know*, actually ^ied with them in the extent to which these cruelties were carried, the number of victims from the date of Innocent's bull to the
* Cliristoph

von Kanzow, a nobleman of Holstein, burned

eighteen at once on one of bis estates.

C

with those wi-etches who from avarice or ambition have sold themselves to the devil. " being an accoimt of the remarkable events which took place in Franconia. and to be sung to the air of Dorothea. final extinction of these persecutions must consi- derably exceed 100. ' It entitled the Druten Zeitung/ or Witches' Clu'o- nicle. set to music. and no doubt the .. by which a witch who had obstinately resisted the torture is betrayed into confession namely. representing three de\ils seizing on divers persons by the hair of their heads. rusal of the by the peWurtzburg murders is perhaps exceeded by that to which another document relative to the state of matters in 1629 must give rise namely a ballad on the subject of these executions. and Wm'tzburg. ticular. Even the feeling of horror excited detailing ia doggrel verses the sufferings of the unfortmiate victims. by sending into her prison the hangman seems to disguised as her familiar (Buhl Teufel) — meet with the particular approbation of the author.000 in Germany. who calls it an excellent joke . and how they had their reward at last ." It is graced also with some hideous devices in wood.18 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. whose fate it commemorates wdth the One device in pargreatest glee and satisfaction. " to be simg to the tune of Dorothea" is —a common street-song of the day. some pious reflections on the guilt of the witches and mzards. Bamberg. etc. and dragging It commences and concludes with them away. legs.

the upon the confession. Morgens geschehen soil. in 1626.' and many others in to find ' the course of that century. may wisli to see a specimeu of We shall take a stanza or two. ich will dir helfen wohl Darmn sey imverzaget. Sie sprach zu ihm behende. r O . man hat kleidet recht Mit einer Bamhaute Als ihm die Drut anschaute meynts wenns der Teufel war ihi. What are we to think of the state of feelmg in the country periodical ballads. man den schickt eui Henkersknecht Zu ihr ins Gefangniss 'nimter. where these horrors were thus made the subject of and set to music for the amuse- ment of the populace t? It was one fatal effect of the perseverance with tlais * Some of our readers precious productiou. At Riga. Er trostet sie und saget. Wie du mir hast verheissen. not wonderful them " improved" by the preachers of the time. as it unhappy wretch was immediately committed to the flames'^. macht nothwendig diesen artlichen Foss{\). point of it 19 in his eyes was very mucli increased lay the consideration that was called. darauf bestandig es gescheh Das mich driiber wunder als . imd gab Anzeigung viel was das tvarfilr ein Spiel (!). superintendent at Riga. Dann Bis sie blieb man ich ihr ilir Unrecht gross. ich bhi ja eben dein Thu mich aus der Angst entreissen. Sie hat nit geschmeckt denBraten. o Hebster Bide meiu Sie thet sich selbst verrathen. so obtained. by Hermann Sampsonius.SELF-DELUSIONS. Em Hexen hat man gefangen. zu Zeit die war sehi' reich Mit der man lang umbgaben ehe sie bekannte gleich." it is t When these horrors were thus versified.Buhl kam daher. wie lestu mich so lang In der Obrigkeit Hande ? Hilf mir aus ihi-en Zwang. there appeared Nine Select Witch Sermons. descriptive of the joke of wliich the poor witch was the victim. It bears the colophon "Printed at Smalcald in the year 1627.

and grey. the witnesses. trials. and lastly the poor all pcld to the giddy whirl. " white. with the fidl knowledge of theu' fate. criminals themselves." the grotesque horrors of the sabbath. every vrHd and impossible phantasm which had received colour and a body in the 'Malleus. then the judges.^ — and these seemed to be perfectly merited the fiery satisfied that they had fully trial to which their confession "WTien immediately subjected them. had been realized in their way alone can we in admit then* intercom-se with Satan. where unhappy creatures. with all their trumpery. we read we Grimm's tliink of the efiect of the Jew's fiddle in fairy tale. when the diabolical doc- . Satan and his dealings were thus brought actually led into before the view of every one. that thousands of weak and depraved minds were the belief that they had formed a connection with the evil being.20 wliicli MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. we see the delusion spreadtill first ing like an epidemic fi'om one to another. — in short. and that the \asions which had so long haunted the brain of Sprenger and his associates this own case. and parearlier part of ticularly those which occur in the the seventeenth centurv. their midnight meetings. then' dealings with spii'its. incantations. In some measm'c account for the strange confessions which form the great peculiarity in the witch trials. and go ence. in many of the cases. off like dancing Der\dses under its influ- True it is that. black.

to confess that ! him AU these tortures he resisted. ! she confessed Who indeed under such a system would not have confessed? Death was unavoidable either way. " quo se porrigat in illis partibus aquilo- naribus. " I went. who. and frequently retracted. the confessions on which these convictions proceeded were elicited by torture. Defrio. " vicies ssevse qvisestioni subditum." —I tortm'ed and her tightly (the torture lasted four hours). like of another worthy in Germany. and the great object was to attain that consummation with the least preparatory pain. " when I . He mentions that an unfortunate gen- tleman in Westphalia had been twenty times put to the rack.wolf " En judicum clemens arbitrium." — See ! in the north tni how long-suffering we judges are we never put our criminals to death them with twenty preliminary ! we have tried courses of torture This is perfectly in the spirit who had been annoyed with the pertinacity of a witch. " Da says the inquisitor — "und hess ich sie tiichtig foltern." says Sir George Mackenzie. trines of Sprenger 21 and Delrio were in their full vigoiir.^' says after all. persisted in maiataining her innocence.^^ sie gestand. instance from Delrio till a fresh appli- cation of the rack produced a fresh admission." in order to compel wolf he was a weretill the hangman gave him an intoxicating draught. and under its influence he confessed that he was a were. moral and physical. One may stand in place of a thousand. the poor lycanthrope.SELF-DELUSIONS.

and that therefore she desired to be out of the Avorld. six of the poor women who were liljerated in the general gaol -delivery which took place after this reign of terror began to decline. silly creature. confusion. and being defamed for a mtch. to examine some women who liad confessed judicially.22 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. but^ being a poor avIio wrought for her meat. x.) retracted their confessions in writing. In the case of the New England Avitches in 1696. was a Justice Depute. terror. attributing * Criminal Law. she knew she would starve. them Ti-ial to the consternation t Eccords of Justiciary. who was a told me that she had not con- fessed because she was guilty." In other cases. (and who had all confessed previously that they had been guilty of the crafts mtch- imputed to them. One of them. Tit. had been placed in the pilliewinks. to secure confession. a girl it appears that her daugh- of nine years of age. and the influence of others frequently produced the effect same on the weak minds of the accused. Where the torture was not corporeally applied. ter. for no person hereafter would give her meat or lodging. In Alison Pearson's casef. of the Master of Orkney. but to his relations or friends. Whereupon she wept most bitterly. and upon her knees called God to witness to what she said*. . fifty and her son subjected to about strokes in the boots. the torture was creatm'e applied not only to the indi\'idual accused. and that all men would beat her and hound dogs at her.

" that confession which it is said we made was no other than what was suggested to us by some gentlemen. cases it is impossible to deny that in many won- the confessions were voluntary. which made us think that it was so.SELF-DELUSIONS. child. and they knew it. and we knew it." But though unquestionably great part of these which at first tended so much to prolong this delusion. more particularly at a time when the phenomena of nature and of the human body were so little imderstood. ill. * Calef's . belief. they said^. and our faculties almost gone. died or became the convulsions were ascribed JoiATiial. and they knew that we knew it. after If a being touched by a suspected individual. accused. 23 tlieir sudden seizure and imprison" And indeed/' said they. be disposed to set down every occurrence which they could not explain. to the du'ect and immediate agency of an evil power. At that period even the most natural events were ascribed to witchcraft. and proto be ceeded from actual Nor was it dered at that persons of a weak and melancholy temperament should. our reason. and every wild phantasm which crossed their minds. And most of what we said was but a consenting to what produced by ment. we were not capable of judging our condition. and our imderstanding. they telling us we were witches. were obtained by torture. or contrary to the real conviction and belief of the confessions.

24 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. In the case of Robert Erskine of tried for the mui'der of his for Dim§. Dec. 1607. such as spontaneous combustion. as if amply sufficient to account for then* death. of Just. like the expecting^ poor man in the fable who called on Death. t Trial of Bartie Paterson. It was still less wonderful that those mysterious phenomena which sometimes occur in the human frame. to diabolical interference. X In Wenham's ing to Jane case. and that he had trial. Dee. although the only charm employed might be a prayer to the Almighty f. Cbauncy deposed that a at his cat belong- Wenliam had come and knocked killed it. ivitch- nephews. whose good little they fit might very probably have invoked imder some of despondency or misanthropy. If an old woman's cat. should appear to the sufferer to be the work of the de\il. he is inchcted makiag away with them by poisoning and the poisoning was not of itself craft. the conclusion was the same. coming 1712*. to the door at night. 1613. and offices optical deceptions. delusions arising from the state of the braia and nerves. took part in a concert with other cats. door at night. 18. so on the contrary. This was founded on evidence at the^ § Rec. . If. to be taken at their word. as in late as Wenham's case. she cured instead of killing. What a " Thesaurus of Horror^' would the spectres of Nicolai have * Cobbett's State Trials. IVIr. 1. this was nothing but a mtch herself iri disguise J. Eecorcb of Scottish Justiciar}-.

25 afforded in the sixteenth centmy or the commencement of the seventeenth. Pordagef.' for an ac- count of these remarkable appearances. the owl-headed tormentor that used to stare at him every night through his curtains. Jane Leade. on the first meeting of their society. brain. . sitting in coaches. the grinning negro Avho seated himself opposite to him. and the 15th volume of the fearful ' Philosophical Journal V What a ghmpse into the infernal world would have been afforded by the still more frightful illusions which haunted poor Backzko of Konigsberg"^ during his political labours in 1806. The princes and powers of the infernal world passed in review before them. dra- Neue Necrologie cler Deutschen. t Divina et Vera Metaphysica.SPECTRAL ILLUSIONS. 1823. were indulged. Thomas Bromley. the snakes tAvist- iug and turning about his knees as he tiirned his periods ! If glish Jacob of visions we go back to 1651. we find our EnBohme. ^ith the same kind. giving an account which must have been exactly of the arising from an excited state of the most thorough conviction of their reahty. Sapperton. His Philadelphian disciples. if embodied in the pages of the ' Malleus' or the Flagellnm Dsemonum/ instead of beiag quietly published by the patients as optical and medical phenomena in the ' ^Berlinische Monatschrift' for 1799. Hooker. with a vision of unparalleled splendour. and others. surroimded with dark clouds and drawn by a cortege of * See the ' lions.

whether they shut their eyes them open. while phenomena which experience has shown to be perfectly natural were imiversally men had come to be on the most familiar footing with spiritual beings of all kinds. twisted limbs. volume of these receipts. " with the eyes of the mind. or kept distinct . In Elias Ashmole had a IMS." . Lords of the visionary eye. one would almost suppose that few persons at that * Wordsworth's 'Dion. fact.26 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. and bears. Richard Napier. own conviction. not with those of the body. Dr. ing about a quire and a half of paper f.' t The prefixed characters which Ashmole interprets to mean Responsum Raphaehs seem remarkably to resemble that cabalistic-looking initial which in medical prescriptions is commonly interpreted " Recipe. claws. gons." Thus. whose lid and will not fall*. In the close of the sixteenth since attributed to supernatural causes." " And shapes that come not at a mortal call Will not depart when mortal voices bid. the appearances were equally " for we saw. physician. and we verily believe his Dee was. on terms His brother all his of intimacy with most of the angels. Dr. tigers. etc." says the master-spirit Por- dage. got almost dical prescriptions mefill- from the angel Raphael. according to his own account. century. a relation of the inventor of the logarithms. Once raised remains aghast. then followed the lower spirits arranged in squadrons with . cats^ ears.

the possibility of which was universally inculcated as an article of faith.'' it. that. who . and to that the king^s nose with him. that they had their exits and their entrances without exciting the least sensation. siuTounded on all hands with such superstitious fancies. Not far from Cirencester was an apparition. re- turned no answer. but cured too. and that they had really concluded that covenant with Satan. Witness the sympathetic nostrums of Valentine Greatrakes and Sir the case of Kenelm Digby." Is it to be wondered at then. James's Park he kissed the king's hand and rubbed his " had a fungous nose. they should voluntarily come forward to confess their imaginary crime. or Arise Evans. reported by Aubrey. the weak and depraved were early brought to believe that all the wild chimeras of the demonologists were true. under the influence of tliis fright- ful delusion. whom it was revealed hand would cure him and at the first coming of King Charles II. and the idea of which was constantly present to their minds ? or that. the visits of ghosts In Aubrey's time. which troubled the king.SPECTRAL ILLUSIONS. Being demanded whether good spirit or bad. 27 time condescended to perform a cure by natural means. but disappeared with a curious perfume and a melodious twang. had become so frequent. " Anno 1670. Aubrey makes an entry in his journal of the appearance of a ghost as coolly as a merchant uow-a-days makes an entry in his ledger. as in the Am- . into St.

of a long course of witchcraft. the reader will have an idea of our meaning who recollects the disclosures that took place in the noted French case of Father Girard and La Cadiere. were occasionally played off upon the deluded victims. mentioned in Reichard's Beytrage/ where a young woman all accused herself. or fi-acture "Huat Hanat. Huat Motas Domiabo Damnaustra. girl atIio sterdam case of the poor Tii'ius'^j accused herself of be\\itcliing cattle by the words Shurius.28 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. These rhjTning or aUiterative charms are of very remote antiquity." Yseta. p. that frauds similar to tliose which Boccaccio has painted in his novel of the angel Gabriel. Astataries Dissunapiter." . that the cunning and the depraved contrived to tiu'n the ecstasies and the fears of these poor wretches to their o^vn pui'jjoses. re- commends the or " following formulaiy for a spraiu Ista. Cato. in his treatise on Husbandry. Daries Dardaries. with the usual traditional and impossible horrors of Sprenger and his brethren ? Neither. her friend. Pista Sista. Turius. in short. is there much reason to doubt that some of the most horrible of their conceptions were founded on facts which were lint too real . and the mother of her friend. her as a melaucholy or bypochondriac girl. entering further on a topic which is Without rather of a delicate kind. or in another still more remarkable case ' in 16S7. Much has been said as to the wonderful coinci- dences to be found in the evidence of the accused * Dapper (Besclireibung von A m sterdam. 150) describes She was burned however as usual. we are afraid.

" The general and his demeanour. where. and the answers. the minuteness of their and the general harmony of the infernal narratives. necessarily correspond. etc. ac- great limitations. and that there were radical and irreconcHeable ferences in the details of the evidence. their own story. " Insamodoque. the rites — of the infernal sabbath.^ One set of questions is put to all the witches. In al- most every case the confessions were merely the echo of questions put by the inquisitors.COINCIDENCES IN EVIDENCE. aU of which again were founded on the demonological creed of the ' Malleus. between the narratives of But this was not all. one simple explanation goes far to account for the phenomenon nire parent certd ratione notions of the devil . separately. being almost differ- always simple affirmatives. there would have been the dif- closest resemblance ferent persons. 29 when examined details. being once fixed. as collected different from the witch is trials of countries. the visions which crossed the minds of the unfortunate so that. we should suppose the coincidence to be complete. Hence it is amusing enough to observe how . for in many cepting the assertions of Sprenger and the rest as true. dif- luasfar as the assertion is really true. even if left to wretches accused soon assumed a pretty determinate and invariable form tell . the original confessions which stUl exist prove that the resemblance was merely general. But the truth first that this assertion must in the place be received with cases.

instead of troubling his head about lucubi. and the other favourite subjects of inquiry with the disciples of the Sprenger^s manual was unknown. corporals.. the readers of Glamil (and ally In the celeall brated ^Mora case in 1669. and who ascribed the convulsions. the inquisitor happened to be an old soldier. etc. when the process of investi- gation fell into the hands of persons to whom In the Lindheim trials in 1633. and who. etc. to all of which he received answers and satisfactory as any tliat are recorded for oui' insti'uction in the chronicles of Bodinus or Delrio. In the seventeenth century. to that cause and . Hamthe mer. the general. to which we have abeady alluded. ent were the results. who be- lieved themselves the victims of diabolical agency.. officers. Succubi. was only anxious to ascertain who was queen of the infernal as distinct spirits. No sooner has one hypochondriac published fifty his symptoms. faintings. the first disease spreads thi'ough the childi-en. than others feel themselves at once affected with the same disorder. who had witnessed several campaigns in the ThirtyYears War.30 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. with which thev were attacked. . with which of course who has not occasion- peeped into his hoiTors?) are familiar. the manner in which the delusion was communicated seems exactly to resemble those remarkable instances of sympathy which occur in the cases of the Scottish Cambuslang Conversions and the American Forest Preachings.

confessed that was true. might lead to some singular medical conclusions. if the subject could justify the discussion. and when the devil wishes to be particularly jolly he pulls the spits from under them. for the banquet commonly consists of broth made with colewort and bacon. for as soon as one or two of them. THE BLOCULA. men's backs. very frugally it would appear. . and beats them black and blue. on the Blocula. as the Brocken is in Germany. bread and butter. trials. is And all what the natm'e of their confession? Of impossible absurdities that ever entered the brain They meet the is the epitome. After supper they dance. 31 next through the unfortunate witches themselves. they are baptized by a priest of man. is an almost inyariable feature in the witch and.SWEDEN. Occasionally he fell sick. indeed. All of them confess intercourse with him^. and required to be bled and blistered . and once he seemed to be dead. goats. milk and cheese and the devil allows no wine. as his famous sonata to Tartini proves. after which he sits down and laughs outrageously. and spits. all the rest joined in the confession. and most of them had sons and daughters by him. bm'sting into the accusation of the children tears. to a musical exhibition Sometimes he treats them on the harp. they ride thither on sticks. this trial devil nightly provided by the devil . they sup with him. oatmeal. on which occasion there was a general * This. which is the devil's ball-room in Sweden. . for he has a great turn for music.

flying about the heads of the girls . the day being bright and glorious. and some thousands of people being present at the spectacle \" — Thirty years before. the witch mania. already beginning to abate in Germany. she imagined that she saw a number black children. it possible after this to read without shuddering the cool newspaper- Horneck " On the 25th of August execution was done upon the notoriously guilty. in a country where. in the hospital founded by the pious enthusiast Antoinette Bourignon. assisted by the commissioners from the capital. —seventy-two women and Is shoidd have been condemned and executed at one time upon such confessions ? like conclusion of Dr. a similar instance of the progress of the epidemic had taken place at Lille. had scarcely been heard earlier perhaps of. and not lildng the colour or appearance of these to be visitors. she warned her pupils on their guard. and where it ceased than in most other comitries in fifteen children Europe. for momniing idol him on tlie Blocula.32 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. Is it not frightful to think that in a trial held before a tribunal consisting of the elite of the province of Dalecarlia. and the sun shining. Shortly before this. with wings. until this time. On entering the school- room one of little day. as the Syrian damsels used to bewail the annual wound of their Thammuz on Lebanon. a girl who had run away from the institution in consequence of being confined for some misdemeanour .

being interrogated how she had contrived to escape. was glad to seek safety in flight . the Capucliins implicitly Ijclieving the reality of the possession. ings. banquets. of the narrative of the time. selves confirmed witches. with regard to had entertained and published as many D . dances. of ^rhicli she 33 had heen guilty. . thing more was wanting in that age of diablerie to prolDably to that she tnrn the heads of the poor children . Their ideal banquets liberal scale seem to have been on a more ever than those of the poor how- Mora witches. having thus obtaiued a clearer notion than she formerly possessed of the wliich she kingdom of Satan. The parents of the culprit now turned the tables upon poor Bourignon. had maintained had been liberated by the devil. amounting to more than intercourse with the fifty. and not liking disclose the tnith. after an examination before the Council.DELUSIONS. than the others in a poor village bably because in Sweden. Exorcisms and prayers of all kinds fol- lowed this astomiding disclosure.. to whose Noservice she had devoted herself from a child. The Capuchins the Jesuits and Jesuits quarrelled. by accusing her of ha^dng bewitched them and at last the doxibting it. pro- many of the pupils had been accustomed to better fare in a populous and wealthy town in Flanders. in the course of six months almost all the girls in the hospital. had confessed themand admitted the usual the midnight meetwhich form the staple devil. pious theosophist. etc.

the suspicions of the public fortunately were not directed to any indi\idual in particular. and in this time particvdar nervous aflectious of a singular kind. and where the e^'il was attributed to some unhappy old women. danger of tampering ^ith youthful minds. in Holland. atti'ibuted to diabolical agency. those in the Oqihan Hospital at Hoorn. were laboiuing under a malady exactly similar . woidd appear too that physical causes. had about mingled with and increased its rise the delusion which had taken in these suhis influ- perstitious conceptions of the devil and Dm-ing the very year (1669) in which the children at ^Mora were suflering under convidsions and fainting fits. before whose houses the afiected urchins. where the to be bewitched number amounted to about seventy. had been more than usually clamorous. strange fancies as the Bishop of Beuevento haA-iug and been taught by her own experience the laid. Such also appears to have been the primary cause of the tragedies in New England in 1699. Another instance of the at same in the kmd had taken place about a century before Orphan Hospital accoimt is Amsterdam. of which a of children supposed particulai' given in Dapper's history of that city. but though the phenomena were ence. . . of the demoniac exhibitions at Loudon.34 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. in which the train of superstition had been so long that it only requii'ed a spark from her overheated it brain to kindle It into a flame. when led out into the streets.

that. of the strange incidents which occurred so late as 1749 in the convent of Unterzeil at Wurtzburg . says Mr. even ! ! . 35 which were made a pretext for the murder of the obnoxious Graudier . will in fact be found to be at the root of witchcraft. and even the igno- rant pubHc themselves. and others in Germany. Cumanus in Italy the Inquisition in Spain . Bodinus." New But what a deluge of blood had been shed before this principle came to be recognized. in cases of witchcraft. and of most of the other more remarkable cases of supposed possession. but they were now so well taught what weight to lay upon confessions.CONFESSIONS. although she confessed she was. Geiss von Lindheim. the judges. Remigius. Henry Institor. sterious principle of The my- sympathy. and De TAncre in France and Lorraine. guilty. Calef (April "one was tried that confessed. and still more before the judicial belief in the existence of WTiat a spectacle the crime was fully eradicated does Europe present from the date of Innocent's Bull down to the commencement of the eighteenth centm-y Sprenger. that the jmy brought her in not In the 25. flooring witches on all sides with the ' Malleus . operating in weak minds. England cases. the best evidence of the fact. 1693). came at last to suspect however the principle might apply to other crimes. most of the singular phenomena in the history of No wonder then that after the expe- rience of a century. the confession of the criminal was not.

wliich was said to be inflicted by him upon all liis vassals. and ATetchcs who made their living by viitli pretending to detect the secret marks which indicated a compact the dcAol^. who found two marks of and which appeared indeed to l-'3 so. a person who put pins into the flesh of a witch. that. trial as a hoi-rid impos- I observe in the Collections of Mr. trade: — "One (p. Pitcaim. at the of Janet Peaston of Dalkeith. the magistrates and ministers John Kincaid of Tranent. Denmark. i. Sweden. to draw forth confession. Geneva.' Holland. Every town and village accusers. 448). and Scotland A^dng with each other in the number of trials ! and the depth of their infatuation and bigotry The Reformation. as it was called. to exercise liis craft ' what he called the devil's making. by running pins into their body. it although Sir George Mackenzie stigmatizes tm'e. them to death ^vith the ^Maleficarum/ or flogging 'Fkgellum' and Tustis Dsemonum.36 IMAGIC AND TVITCHCRAFT. on pretence of discovering the devil's stigma. the common upon her. errors. or mark. Sir George Mackenzie mentions the case of one of them who confessed the imposture and a similar instance is mentioned by Spottiswood Sir Walter Scott gives the following account of tliis celebrated mode of detecting witches. e. . * The trade of a pricker. was a regular one in Scotland and England. . for she could not feel the pin when it was put into either of the said marks. nor did they (the marks) bleed when they were taken out again and when she was asked where she thought the pins were put in. torture the accused party. England. as well as on the Continent. 48) . which uprooted other only strengthened and fostered this. she pointed to a part of her body distant from of that market-town caused 1 a'icker. This species of search. — inquisitors. and torturing them at the same time. on the continent was filled with spies. and to be insensible to pain. . was in Scotland reduced to a trade and the yoiuig witch-finder was allowed to (p. was. the practice of the infamous Hopkins. as if in exercise of a lawful calling.

but was resorted to merely as a certain means to get rid of an obnoxious enemy. the room to beheve that pomt or lower part of which was. judges^ advocates. on the watch for anything which might afford the semblance of To ensure the death or ruin of an enemy.' Besides the fact.THE REFORMATION. which was hoUow for the purpose." p. labouring in attendant on these trials grew rich from the enormous fees . there is also the professed prickers used a pin. on being pressed down. They were pins of inches in length. of sunt. aiu'o argen: toque vestitus uxor ejus vestium luxu certabat tliree the real place. supplicium evasit. the executioner became : a personage of first-rate consequence " generoso equo instar aulici nobilis ferebatm'. prove how often the accusation of sorcery was not even believed by the accusers themselves. and that wliich appeared to enter Demonology and Witchcraft. every one con- nected with these frightM tribunals. after his death. He was burned in efBgy however . INlean- while the notaries' clerks and their vocation. officials." says Linden. 297. "qui accusati of Edelin." The fate Urban Grandier. sheathed in the upper. that the persons of old people especially sometimes contain spots void of sensibUity. and of Peter of Abano in Italy*. the body did not pierce it at all. * Peter died in prison just in time to escape the flames. nothing more was necessary in most cases than to throw into this lion's mouth an accusation of suspicion. magic against him. in of the Mare- chale d'Ancre in Sidonia von York of Doctor Flaet and Germany. the determined foe of these proceedings. " Vix aliquis eorum. and France. 6l executioners.

' vol. p. than to expose themselves to the fate of Edelin or Flaet. and when no man felt secure that he might not suddenly be compelled by tortiu'c to bear witness against his own selfishness began to innocent wife or childi'cn. thi'eatened the lives of moreexalted A-ictims. by'which the fees of trade in addi'essed to the commission. 1591). commencing had gradually overshadowed the were confined to the or mihappy fowhose more vigorous intellect land. But now. iii. all theu' might system of pm'ifica- At last however the hoiTors of Wurtzburg and TreAcs began to open the eyes even of the dullest to the progress of the danger. 110. began to swell the catalogue. coui't were restricted within more moderate bounds the profits arising from tliis but still human Aictims were sufficient to induce the dej)endants of coiu't. nobilioiibus*. Yersuch einer Gcischichte von ' Trier. presidents of courts and professors. even those women enabled them to resist the popular contagion chose rather to sit by spectators of these horrors. — when noblemen and abbots. . spreading on and on." cum Some partial diminution of this persecuting zeal took place in consequence of a Rescript of John YII. to this support with tion by fire. ^ATiile the executions lower classes. like members and the Brahmins in India. to crazed old reigners. when the pestilence. hx attacking the madness in which they originated. — * Lindou. which. cited bv Wyttonbach.Ob MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. (18th December. like Elijah^s cloud.

and care Archbishop and Elector of Mentz. but the works of the foreigners were in almost unknown Germany. co-operate with truth and reason. Pietro d'Apone. and ex- erted his whole influence for the suppression of the trials. Frederick Spec.PERSECUTIONS IN GERMANY. humane. immediately received a new light with regard to the transaction. in the case of the the first New England witchcrafts. witch operate on the So strongly did this exposure of the horrors of the trials mind of John Philip finally first Schonbrunn. who till then had been most active in the persecution. In the sixteenth centmy. and that of Wierus was nearly as absurd and superstitious as the doctrines he combated. Hale. the clergyman's wife : her husband. effectual check which they received was from the accusation of Mrs. It is little to the credit of the Reformers that the first work in which the matter was treated in a philosophical.' in 1631. that his on assuming the Electoral dignity was to abolish the process entirely within his dominions . and common-sense view should have been the production of a Catholic Jesuit. Wierus. Bishop of Wm-tzburg. true that Ponzonibius. So^ in the 39 same way. and Reginald Scott had published works which went to impugn their whole proceedings . the descendant of a noble family in Westphalia. The first decisive blow which the doctrines of the inquisitors received in Germany was from it is the pub- lication of the 'Cautio Criminalis.

and re-appearing in in the Sweden and Denmark at shape of the trials Mora and Fioge. .iO MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. Eeichard"^ has published a rescript of Frederick William. 1654. enjoin- ing that the prisoner should be allowed to be heard in defence.^ was publicly dewith the highest applause. p. in the Uni- * Beytrage zur Befbrderiing einer niiliern Einsicht in das ge- saiamte Geisten-cicb. before any tortm'e was resorted to (a principle directly the reverse of those maintained by the inqiiisitorial courts). example which was soon after followed —an the by Duke of Brunswick and others of the German princes. bearing date the 4th of November. to which no credit was to be given. inaugural Thesis of Thomasius. we find the sentence of death first passed upon her by the provincial judges. i. In 1701 the celebrated livered. as in the Neuendorf trial of Catherine Sempels. though still liable to partial and temporary obscm-ations. —the evil apparently shifting fm'ther north. and expressly repro- bating the proof by water as an unjust and deccitfid test. commuted into imprisonment for a degree life by the Electoral Chamber in 1671. Even where a conviction takes place. 'De Crimine Magise. Elector of Brandenbvu'g. — of lenity which never could have taken place dvir- ing the height of the mania. addressed to the judges in reference to the case of Ann of Ellcrbroke. toI. Shortly after this the darkness begins to break up^ and the da^vning of better views to appear. 284.

the frightful stoiy of And so late as 1749 comes Maria Renata. notthe Treatise of . Still. versity 41 fifty of Halle. while he adopted his facts and argiunents. Thomasius^s great storehouse of information and argument Avas the work of Bekker. where thirteen persons were burnt ahve on three scaflblds. there seems to be no doubt from the evidence that Maria was by . a work wliich some years before woiild assuredly have procured tlie author no other crown but that of martyrdom. In 1728 it flamed up again at Szegedin in Hungary. fire of persecution seems to have been smothered only. This trial is remarkable from the feeling of disgust it seems to have excited in Germany. the not extinguished. as embodying the views which the honest and intelligent had long entertained. and France and the more so because. the whole official details of which are published by -Horst. steered clear of those Cartesian doctrines which had been the chief cause why the work of Bekker had produced so little practical eflFect.PERSECUTIONS IN HUNGARY. under circumstances of horror worthy of the wildest periods of this madness. of Wurtzburg. whatever may be thought of the reality of her pretensions. but which was now received with general approbation. for witchcraft. and which in its atrocity was worthy to conclude the long series of murders which had polluted the annals of Bamberg. Italy. who again had modelled his on Van Dale on Oracles and Thomasius. withstanding the good thus produced.

and that phenomena of garded as mere mental confessions. but dosian code. Tartarotti.. a venefica in the sense of the Theo- But there is a time. in 1652. as Solomon glories says. unless on proof of their having done actual injury to the other men or animals. that taking this as their text-book. Sebastian Michaelis indeed would have us to believe. as is evident from Debio's preface. If such how- rule was nowhere did the mania of persecution at one time rage more than in Geneva. It seems fairly entitled however to the credit of having been the first state in Europe ever was originally the case.42 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. attacked the system so time the adherents of ^•igorously. and potions. etc. and Dell' Ossa. for eveiytbing under the sun . were redelusions. that at one time the tribunal at Geneva put no criminals accused of witchcraft to death. . a witch was burnt even so late as 1786. and the trial of the ' Malleus Maleficarum^ were departed. that since that the old superstition seem to have abandoned the Germany. had come to a close much sooner in Switzerland and France. this humane for unfortunately soon abandoned. it is said. particularly IMaffei. but in the Protestant cantons no trials seem to have taken place for two centuries past. various foreigners. ivas a dabbler in spells no means immaculate. The last execution in Geneva was that of Michel field in ^Matters Chauderon. In the Catholic canton of Glarus. The consequence was.

In this apology for their belief. directed only against pretended witches and pro- phets. 1577 . has ' printed the Requete at full length in his p. proves distinctly that the belief in the reality of witchcraft had ceased. 43 which emancipated bloody superstition. presented in the year 1670. in 1682. down to that of 1616 . following on the remarkable * The trial of the Abbe Fiard. in . and that it was merely it the pretended exercise of such powers which was was thought necessary to suppress. of the celebrated case of Gaufi'idy. in 1609 of those pronounced by the Parliament of Toulouse. credit of Louis It is highly to the and his ministry. on the occasion of his Majesty having commuted the punishment of death into banishment for life. one of the latest believers on record. .EDICT OF LOUIS XIV. in the case of a set of criminals whom the Parliament had condemned more majorum for witchcraft*. in 1611 of the arrets of the Parliaments of Dijon and Hennes. of the numerous arrets of the Parliament of Paris. reported by Monstrelet. from the trials in Artois in 1459. of the judgments pronounced under the commission addressed by Henry the Leger in May Great to the Sieur de TAncre. that this step taken by him in opposition to a formal requite by the Parliament of Normandy. they reminded Louis of the inveterate prac- tice of the kingdom. the edict of Louis XIV. itself from the influence of this In France.. Lettres sui* la 117 et seq.

and certainly . et que la piete de Votre Majeste ne souf- . in their anxiety for the support of their constitutional privileges. and in all probability the ap- pearance of the edict of 1680 was accelerated by the very remonstrance by which the Norman sages had hoped to strangle it.permcttre de coutinuer ^instruction et juge- ment frira dcs proces des personnes accuses de sor- tilege. it is doubtful whether the Parliament of Normandy. the prospect is anything but a comfortable one. Mareclial de Retz. pas que Ton introduise dm'ant son regne une nouvelle opinion contraire aux principes de la religion. and of a passage in St. they which had been quoted against sum up their plead- ing with the following placid and charitable supplication to his Majesty soufiru' — " Qu'elle voudra bien Texecution des arrets qu'ils out rendus. coidd have taken a more effectual plan to ruin their OAvn case. in 1441^ wlio was biu'nt for magic and sorcery in tlie presence of tlie Duke of Bretague and after combating tlie authority of a : canon of the Council of Ancyra. than by thus presenting Louis with a sort of anthology or elegant extracts from the atrocities of the witch trials . et lem." Notwithstanding this concluding compliment to his Majesty^s zeal and piety. pour laquelle Votre jNIajeste a toujoiu's si glorieusement employe ses soins et ses armes. In tmniing from the Continent to the state of matters in England and Scotland. Augustine^ them by their opponents.44 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT.

Witness the successive Henry VIII. and of James neral. as in the case of Bolingbroke and Margery Jourdain. which Zachary Grey. WTiat would the Doctor have said to the of list THREE THOUSAND \dctims executed during the dynasty of the Long Parliament alone. canto iii. in Dr. even before the enactment of any penal statute. the editor of Hudibras. took place for this imaginary ofearliest suppressed. against the wretched creatures in Lincolnshire. groimd Wliole nights and days upon their breeches. fence. And feehng pain.. notliing can be ^vliich 45 more deceitful than tlie unction Dr. whose incantations the genius of Shakespear has rendered familiar to us in the Second Part of King (Statutes of Henry VI. the witch-findergeneral. whose fate was. were hanged for witches. Francis Hutchinson lays to his soul. and self . says he himperused ? ^liat absm-dities can exceed those sworn to in the trials of the witches of Warboys." Sudibras. of Elizabeth. I..PERSECUTION IN ENGLAND. Hutchinson's days. and passed while Coke was Attorney-Ge- and Bacon a member of the Commons Witness the exploits of Hopkins. the last of which was repealed only in 1736. to assert that its when he ventures and England was one of felt those countries where horrors were least Witness the trials and convictions which. part ii. of whom And some for sitting above " Some only for not being drown' cl.

old woman but Holt charged the with such firmness and good sense. is stilly annually " improvecV in a comat memoration sermon Cambridge ? or in the case of the Inckless Lancashire witches. a child would now be things. disposed to laugh at it ? A better order of justiceship commences with the Chiefof Holt. in 1694. With the view however of seciu'ing her pardon. condemning Amy Duny and Rose Cullender. though corroborated by the opinion of Sir Thomas Browne. and in particular the clergjTnen who but. on e\-idence which. Wenham's which followed in 1711. was found against the prisoner. to the villany of the impostor Robinson. whose story fiu'nished materials to the di'amatic muse of Hey wood and Shadwell ? is How melancholy the spectacle of a man like Hale. out the whole trial. in 1664. Through- Chief Justice Powell seems to have sneered openly at the absm'dities which the A^itnesses. a verdict of were examined. ^lunnings. fi-om 1694 to 1701. The e\idence against ^lother is true. that a verdict of Guilty.46 perhaps MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. the result was the same. were endeavoiu'ing to press upon the juiy guilty . sufficiently evinced the change which had taken place in the feelings of judges. trials before fii"st Not trial then on record in a was found. by showing . Avith a intellect. with all his exertions. man jiu-y of weaker have sealed the fate of the unfortunate . sacrificed. would. as afterwards appeared. In about ten other case. Holt. almost the for witchcraft.

in Chancery (August 2. Barrington. jNIrs. by pulling off their stockings and making a lather of soap With this crowning atrocity. does not hesitate to estimate the numbers of those put to death in England on * this charge at ' 30.000 Even now a complaint of being bewitched' is occasionally made to Justices of the Peace by the very ignorant or the very malignant. 1827). and it not very long ago that a poor life woman narrowly escaped with her trial fi'om a re\ival of Hopkins's by water'^. . were hanged to the devil. Ray. Even yet however the case of Rex v. in 1809. the catalogue of ! murders in England closes. for her. he was given in. " whether they found her guilty upon the indictment for conversing ^^ith the dcA-il in the shape of a cat?" The foreman answered. aged at niiie. in his observations on the statute 20 Henry VI. in Hicks and her daughter. Weldon. proves that the popular belief in such practices has is by no means ceased .. and the pretended exercise of such arts being punished in fature by imprisonment and pillory. " We find her guilty of that " It is almost needless to add that a pardon how far the prejudices of the jury asked. 47 had gone. and the still later case of Barker v. And yet after all this. when the a erdict was procured 1716. Huntingdon for selling their soids and raising a storm. the penal statutes against witchcraft being repealed in 1736.PERSECUTION IN ENGLAND.

.-ild which amidst the occasional bustle of exertion. of the delusion in that country by the valuable work of Mr. selected from Records of that Court. this gloomy superthan stition assxmie a darker or bloodier character Wild. and pastoral from the striking. partly —partly from the habits and manner of the tendency to thought and meditation which they create and —have always been the great life. Edinburgh. foster. of sunshine and vapour and storm— of mental vacuity in solitude hill-side all * Trials and other Proceedings in Matters Criminal before the tlie High Court of Justiciary in Scotland. where they contained anything of in- In no country perhaps did in Scotland. flection The temper of the with enthusiasm Scots. which contains abstracts of every trial in the supreme Criminal Coui't of thrown on the Scotland : the author has given a faithful and of the procedure in each case. mountainous. By Eobert Pitcaim. rise Much light has been and progress^ decline and fall. combining of life — their mode in earlier days. We now turn to Scotland. varied. left and agitating many internals — their night watches —their uncertain cHby the cave on the conmate. Pitcairn*. countries. v.48 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. extracts fi'om the original docimients. haunts in which superstition finds its cradle and re- home. acfull minute -siew companied with terest. and sometimes terrible phenomena which they present.

slain. E . coidd ear or eye Discern of sound or mien Yet darkly did it seem as there Heralds and pursuivants appear. t At the second marriage of Alexander p. Gibber and sign. " All was hot gaistis. 149. and wicked churchmen were cited by audible voices and an accompaniment of thunder before the * Holingshed. advance and fly. and visionary heralds proclaimed from the market-cross the long catalogue of the " Figures that seemed to rise and die. 294. p. ii. i. p. period of the Scottish annals." Marmion. X Boece. with a degree of assm-ance and plausibility which would have deceived the very elect J . vol. With trimipet soimd and blazon fair. 128. ed. Incubi and succubi wandered about in all direc- tions.SCOTTISH SUPERSTITION. and eldrich phantasie. 1574. A summons to proclaim. Fordim. canto v. 50." the meteors and aurorse boreales which prevailed in this moimtainous re- gion were tortured into apparitions of horsemen combating in the air. vol. Skeletons danced as familiar spectres at the nuptials of our kingsf: warned them back from the battle-field of Flodden. tri- pp. . Boece. III. 317.. tributed to exalt fear with 49 and keep alive that superstitious which ignorance looks on every extra- From the earliest ordinary movement of nature. WliUe nought confu-med. or corpse-candles burning on the guests hill -tops "^.

had hardly assumed a form much calculated to disturb the peace of society. men did not as yet think it necessary. Though in some cases. or their benevolent exercise. in 1479. these superstitious notions. Sir Michael Scott. . llichele Scotto fu.. + " Quell' altro. The Tramontane fame of the second had even crossed the Alps." Canto xx. merely for the supposed possession of such powers. Sii' Michael and the and died peaceably . J As in the case of the witches at Forres. and Asdente of Parma. But previous to the Reformation. though generally prevalent. Pitscottie. to apply the piu'ifying power of fire to eradicate the disorder. where these powers had been supposed to have been exercised for treasonable piu'poses. che veramente —Bu- Delle magiche frode seppe il giuoco. chanan. che nei fianchi e cosi poco. and Lord Soulis.50 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. of ErcUdoune. and the tragical Ehymer lived fate of the tyrant Soulis on the Nine Stane Rigg * In the case of Cameron. the punishment of death had been inflicted on the witches J. 1466. the astrologer of Guido di Monte Feltro. wizards. Bishop of Glasgow. for Dantef accommodates him mth a place in Hell. before The annals of the thirteenth century are dignified with the exploits of three whom Nostradamus Thomas and MerHn must stoop their crests. who attempted to destroy King Duifus by the favourite pagan charm of roasting his unage in wax. between Bonatto. and those burnt at Edinburgh for a similar attempt against James III. bunal of Heaven"'^.

" moving had made even children pass through the Moloch. down to the reign of Mary. and executed agents. not to the supposed sorceries wMch had polluted his Castle of Hermitage. and " In dismal dance around the fiu-nace blue. the this. it ob^dous that nothing was really rested on this charge. adopting im- . no trial properly for witchcraft appears on the record. 51 was OTving. For though in the case of the unfor1536. on an accusation of treasonably conspiring the king's death by poison. tunate Countess of Glammis^ executed in during the reign of James V.. but to those more palpable atrocities which had been dictated by the demon of his own evil conscience. which Innocent's bull had systematized and German reformers had preserved while they demoHshed every other idol. some hints of sorcery are tlirown into the dittay.SCOTTISH SUPERSTITION. E 3 fire to Their Scottish brethren. But with the introduction of the Reformation " novus rerum nascitur ordo. who were the by those iron-handed and iron-hearted so readily eA^oked by the simpler spell of feudal despotism. probably with the ^dew of exciting a popular prejudice against one whose personal beauty and high spu'it is rendered her a favourite with the people. From commencement of the Records of the Scottish Justiciary Court.'' Far from divesting themselves of the dark and bloody superstitions propagated.

52 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. In Scotland the was not less busy in high places. The aid of the sword of justice was immediately found to be indispensable to the weapons of the spirit. and those noble patrons (chiefly. Witchcraft became the all-engi"ossing topic of the day. and the verse of Moses which declares that a witch shall not be suffered to live. who had generally been pro- and evil fessors of the art magic. than among the humbler beings. The Lady . was forthmth made the groundwork of the Act 73 of the ninth parliament of Queen ^Nlary^ which enacted the pmiishment of death against Antches or considters Avith vritches. and during the fom'teenth fifteenth centimes in Italy. A sort of relation of clientage seems to have been established between the operative performers. of their continental prototypes^ plicitly the creed transplanted to our nately but too Avell own country^ a soil unfortu- prepared for such a seed^ the Aisible whole doctrine of Satan^s ^yith all agency on earthy liis the grotesque horrors of commerce with mankind. we regret to say. The consequences of this avithoritative recogni- tion of the creed of witchcraft became immediately ob\ious with the reign of James which followed. just as certain other offences were during the reign of Justinian. of the fail- sex) by whom their services were put in requisition. and the ordinary accusation resorted to whenever it was the object of one indiAidual to ruin another.

. the power and energy of mind with which Providence had source. having a huge pair of horns on his head. the Countess of Angus.SCOTTISH SUPERSTITION. passim. Master of Reqiiests. raise gifted him. the Countess of Lothian. to such a height had the mania gone. and shortly after Nay. Lord Justice Clerk of Scotland. either protectors of witches arf^. the enemies of the Reformation attributed to a darker He was . furnished our his 53 of own Northern Wizard with some pictures^ most striking —the Countess of Athol^ the Coimtess of Huntly. at which terrible sight Knox's secretary died. that Scot of Scotstarvet mentions that Sir Lewis Ballantyne." trial (the same person who figures in the of Alison Balfom% as a confederate of Both- well). Home of G-odscroft. the Lady Ker. he was thereby so terrified that he took sickness and thereof died. "to raise the devil. became mad with fear. accused of ha\'ing attempted to St." This was a "staggering state of Scots * Scot of Scotstarvet. (more fortimate in her generation than her grandmother Lady Glammis). who having raised him in his own yard in the Canongate. the wife of the Chancellor Arran. were all. wife of James. curiosity dealt "by with a warlock called Richard Grahame. if we are to believe the scandal of Scotstarvet. "some sanctes" in the churchyard of Andrew's but in the course of this resuscitation upstarted the de^dl himself. or themselves dabblers in the liimself did not escape the ac- Even Knox cusation of witchcraft.

When judges Nor. The first to . except the emphatic sentence " Convict and Brynt. Two or three of these are peculiarly interesting one. from the high rank of some of those involved in them. from the difference between its details and those which form the usual materials of the witch trials . the others. Andrew^ s. the of Janet Bowman. of which no particulars are given.54 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. have said Avith Well might any unfortunate criminal Angelo steal themselves. for in the case of Alison Pearson. and the strange and almost inexpKcable extent of the delusion. (1588) celebrated Patrick we find the Adamson. Measure. fact. was the Church less deeply impli- cated than the com't and the hall of justice . statesmen" indeed. occurs the trial first entry in the Justiciary Record. Archbishop of St. in almost aU of which the residt as in the case of is the same Bowman." No fewer than thirty-five trials appear to have taken place before the Coui't of Justiciary dm'ing the remainder of Jameses reign." " Tliieves for their robbeiy have authority.. ii. when even the supreme criminal judge of Scotland was thus at the head of the delinquents. and condescending to apply to this poor Avretch for a potion to cure him of his sickness A faith so strong and so general coiild not In 1572 be long in manifesting itself in works. in Measure f. 2. laying aside the fear of the Act of Parliament. (to 1625).

. instead of the de^dl himself in propria persona. appeared at a second "forgathering. and the faith she took at the fount stane. who took care that his character shoidd open upon her in a favourable light. chid her for time). t Ibid. which comforted her a little. gray bairdit. p. the same sweet elves whom Paracelsus defends. His true character. but that her husband should recover. 55 which we allude victed is that of Bessie Dnnlop"^. 51. vol. ane pair of gray brekis. con- on her own confession . the peculiarity in this case is that. and quhyte schankis gartarrit abone the kne/' Their first meeting took place as she was going to the pasture. her distrust in Providence. and whom she describes in her judicial declarationf as '^an honest weel elderlie man. i. and her husband and child that were lyand sick in the land-ill (some epidemic of the and she new risen out of gissane (childbed) . and told her that her sheep and her child would both die. that " though * Nov. 8. 48. and had ane gray coitt with Lumbard sleeves of the auld fassoun. p." Thom. and old Aubrey delighted to honom\ Bessie^s familiar was a being whom she calls Thorn Reed.^' The poor witch answered. the spiritual beings to whom we are introduced are our old friends the fairies. "gi'ctand (weeping) verrie fast for her kow that was dead. Pitcaim. 1576. however.^^ when he unblushingly urged her " to denye her Christendom and renounce her baptism.TRIALS IN SCOTLAND.

" and that she ought to have acShe afterwards received a cepted their imitation. and prophesied the death of her child and the recovery of her husband." these She was told by Thom. disappeared of a sudden. for her seem to have been all exerted to cure. she should be riven at horse-tails she would never do that/' hut promised him obedience in else^ all things —a qualified concession vrith which he rather grumblingiy departed. men sitting . not to Most of the articles of is her indictment are for cures performed. that "were the gude "n'ights that wonned in the Court of Elfane. after Avhich she could not understand.56 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. and kill. place in her His third appearance took (three own house. nor there any charge against her of exerting her powers for a malicious . and "very seemly to see. some conversation among themselves she they. after theu' departure. he took her by the apron and led her out of the house to the kiln-end. and " a hideous ugly sough of wind followed them. the men in gentlemen's cloth- and the women with plaids round about them. who con- descendingly asked a drink of her. " Welcome Bessie. the visit fi'om Queen of Elfane in person. wilt thou go with us but as V made no answer to this invitation. privileges spells The use which poor Bessie made of her was of the most harmless kind. where she saw eight women and four ing. band and three tailors To the infinite consternation of this trio and of the gudeman. in presence of her hus!) ." They said to her.

it seems doubtsion^ ful whether the mummery of witchcraft formed anything more than a mere pageant in the dark to the trials of drama of human passions and crimes. or the belief in their existence. that whoever should turn his hat thrice and cry buz. This one of those cases which might plausibly be quoted in support of the ground on wliich the witch trials have been defended by Selden. We allude Lady Fowlis and of Hector INIunro is of Fowlis. hui'nt. as far as the principal actor was concerned. pui'pose. in which.^' says Selden. with as great rigour as if their exercise had been real. he could take away a man's life. which thus makes the will univer- . and the writers of the Encyclopedic. be put to death. by turn- ing his hat and crying buz. with an intention to take shall away a man's life. namely. " The law against witches. but pimishes the malice of those people that use such means to take away men^s lives. in 1590. for witchcraft and poisoning. 57 As usual however she was con\icted and This was evidently a pure case of mental delu- but it was soon followed by one of a darker and more complex character.REMARKABLE TRIALS." We shall hardly stop to expose the absiu'dity of this doctrine of Selden in the absti'act. the — necessity of punishing the pretensions to such powers. it " does not prove there be any. Bayle. thing. If one should profess that. yet this were a just though in truth he could do no such law made by the state.

and the relaxation of moral prin- the indi\idual himseK. 1601. containmg "what ladies loved what lords best. of Just. short. of Luss. and was frequently employed as a mere cover by which these might with the more security and The philters and loveeifect be perpetrated. . before the sheriff of Perth. deed . where the instrument of seduction In was a jewel obtained from a necromancer. the prociple with which it fession of sorcery was associated with other crimes." (Avhich the Chief Justice prudently would not allow to be read in Charms of a more disgusting nature appear to have been supplied by our own witches. tried court). are sufficiently well kno\Mi. that the power which the pretended professor of such arts thus obtained over the popular mind. in particular. in 1601*. wherever any flagitious purpose was to be effected. the private court calendar of the latter. tried for sorcery and incest. as in the case of Roy. and in that of Colquhoun. they were accomplished adepts. as was natm-ally to be expected from the power which * Rec.58 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. rendered was naturally accompanied in him a most dangerous member of society. but when we read such sally equal to the cases as that of Lady Fowlis^ it cannot at the same time be denied. 1633. notliing more was necessary than to have In poisoning. recourse to some notorious witch. In general. potions of La Voisin and Forman. May 27.

Katharine Ross. The object of the conspirators in this last case was the destruction of the young lady of Balnagown. supposing the alliance to be effected. and stiU more from the singular case of Lady Fowlis. poisoner with the procuress and the witch the prevalence of the same connection in Scotland appears fi-om the details of the case of Robert Erskine. whom she had seduced into her schemes. in England. ^ay. a more extensive slaughter was required. of Balnagovvn. lect: there and obviously of an acute and penetrating intelseems reason to doubt whether she . including an accomplice of her own.CASE OF LADY FOWLIS. and these were next to be removed. a woman apparently of the most resolute temper. gave them of realizing their own . aflfords . while us no bad specimen of this union of the . Tiu'ner. to many the young Lady Fowlis. it 59 prophecies. with their families. which would have enabled George Ross. the daughter of Sir David Ross. Euphemia ]\Iacalzean. the indictment goes the length of charging her with projecting the mm'der of more than thirty individuals. Robert and Hector. from that of the daughter of Lord Cliffconhall. Poisoners and witches are classed together in the conclusion of Lonis before the XIV/s edict and the trials Chambre Ardente prove that the two trades were generally found in harmonious juxtaposition. of Dun. Our own Mrs. But in order to entitle them to the succession of Fowlis. Lady Fowlis's stepsons. stood in the way.

arrow heads. at them. with her familiars. that would kill shortly. the more prudent course woidd be to allow them to play off their mummeries in their own way. The first composition prepared for ale.60 had any ceries MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. but she probably thought that. or burying them with downward. in availing herself of the ser\ices of those hags whom she employed. the pictm'cs were in this case hung up on the north side of the room. faith in the to power of the charms and sorwhich she resorted. representing the intended victims. shot several arrows. while she combined them with more effective hiunan means. she seems resorted to forth^vith to have more vigorous measures. Accordingly the work of destruction commenced with the common spell of making two pictures of clay. shod with effect. and to have associated Katharine Ross and her brother George in her plans. and the lady. in order to renew the attempt. She then gave orders to prepare "a pig of ranker poison. elf. and the nurse. again protected him the "pig" fell and was broken by the way. but without Though the Lady Fowlis gave orders that other two pictures should be prepared. her victims was a stoupfiil of poisoned but this ran out in making. who could not resist : the temptation of tasting the contents. paid the penalty of her curiosity with her life. but instead of exposing them to the their heads fire." and this she dispatched by her nurse to ProWdence however the young Laird of Fowlis. So corrosive .

however^ . The " ratton poyson" which she had Lady Balnagown. who treated Ovcrbury with spiders. alternately. and arsenic. Like Mrs.) of " in eggs. by means of one of her subsidiary hags. her company supped . and more than one of whom trial had been executed before her own took place. Nothing however could move Lady Fowlis from her pm-pose. with her sister-in-law. would seem the unfortunate lady Lady Fowlis was at last appre- hended. his ving too strong for them.CASE OF LADY FOWLIS. 61 was the nature of the potion. however. after all is terminated in an acquit- a result which only explicable by observing that the jury was evidently a packed one. This scene of diablerie and poisoning. on the confession of several of the witches she had employed. on which Lady Balnagown and its effects were so viothat even the wretch by whom it was admi- nistered revolted at the sight." (ratsbane. trial. browis. and consisted principally of the dependants of the houses of Munro and Fowlis. At the date of the however. still it was alive. that the very grass on which it fell was destroyed. her fe- male victim. she contrived. to mix in a prepared for dish of kidneys. or kale. and lent. She had more nearly succeeded. that she might be able to " hit his complexion." she to try the effect of now proceeded " ratton poyson. Turner." but constitution apparently pro- which she seems to have administered several doses to the still young laird. cantharides. without effect. The proceedings tal.

self-presentation. warranted the victim until the 17th of April loTiving. He docs not appear to have been naturally a -nicked man. It did not terminate here. and who harassed and tenified him Avith of all fearful predictions and ghastly exhibitions kinds. one of his stepmother's intended Adetims. he seems quietly to have devoted him to death. Hectox'. for the very same witches who life Avere aftcnvards leagued ^nth him against the of George. who seemed to have the same confidence in her own nicety of calculation as the celebrated inventress of the poudre de successions. But being and told by his familiars that the only chance he had of recovering his health was that his brother should die for him. he seems to have been entirely under the control of the hags by whom he was surrounded. fol- It must be admitted that the incantations wliich followed were well calculated to produce a strong effect. credulous to the last degree. Unlike liis more energetic stepmother. by whose death he would have succeeded to the seized with a lingering illness. imder the strong instinct of order to prevent suspicion. and the officiating witch. estates. it In was agreed that his death should be lingering and gradual. on the weak and credulous being on whom they were played oflf. both moral and physical. life had himself been the principal performer in a witch nnderplot directed against the of his brother George.62 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. he had consulted with a ^iew of cu- ring his elder brother Robert. now appeared that Mr. .

in the the witches left month of January. and terror. Hector Mu. and had the good fortune to be acrepeated. and passed to a piece of periors. His foster-mother. Hector was her and his brother George to die for This cooling ceremony being thi'ee times live. April. as well as Lady Fowlis. as had been predicted. fi-ozen with cold was carried back to bed. and Hector apHe had the advantage. ground lying betwixt the lands of two feudal suwhere they dug a large grave. was then carried forth. Mr. Hector Avas lying sick at the time. staves. Scarcely had the agitation produced by these trials subsided. doubtless by other spells than the force of sympathy. and silently deposited in the grave. of a selected jury on his trial. the house in which Mr. quitted. the turf being laid over him and pressed down with riggs. to ask the chief witch choice. the patient. when the public mind was again confoimded by a new." and returning to '^ which was her choice to him. and almost inexplicable scene of enchantment. in 1591. She answered that Mr. Hector's witches were more successful than the hags employed by George died in the month of his stepmother. Christian Neill.m'o.CASE OF LADY FOWLIS. however. the bearers all the time remaining dumb. . Shortly after midnight. wrapped in blankets. a more extensive. was then ordered to run the breadth of nine the grave. directed against the life of James and his Queen. pears to have recovered.

.^' But. " did. p. or Gellis Drnican. last it At fore part of the throat. he. i. notwithstand- ing these persuasive applications. Thirty or forty different individuals. which is a most cruel torment also^. The first liint of those strange proceedings which were afterwards disclosed. that her silence was owing to her haA-ing been marked by the devil. Some sudden cm'cs performed by this girl. No : sooner was it detected all than the charm was bm'st dcAil. 213. of Dr. torment her with the torture of the pillic^vinkis [a species is of thumbscrew] upon her fingers. relative to the extent of her ciates.64 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. pamphlet obsen^es. was derived from the confessions of a gii'l named Gellie. no confession was suggested by some of the operators. and binding or wi-enching her head with a cord or rope. as the were "as civill honest women damnable life Xews il-om Scotland." with which the criminal records fiu'nish us down to this time. —Pitcaim. she confessed that her cm-es were performed by the assistance of the and proceeded to make disclosures gviilt. with a laudable anxiety for the discovery of the truth. Fian. wliich a grievous paine. declaring the vol. and other suspicious points in her conduct. and the number of all asso- which utterly eclipse the preceding " dis- coveries of Avitchcraft. servant to the Deputy Bailiff of Tranent. ha^^Jlg attracted the observation of her master. with the help of others. * some of whom. and on a diligent examination the mark was found on the could be extorted.

Agnes Sampson (the wise wife of Keith). in respect of the strangeness of these matters. played a reel or dance before the witches. as they moved in procession to meet the devil in the kirk of North Berwick. from to this superstition whom the victims offered . one of the senators of the College of Justice." . and even carried his curiosity so far as to send for Gellie herself. had generally been selected for among those apprehended on Duncan's information was Euphemia Macalzean. the daughter of Lord Cliftonhall. according to the confession of another witch. prone to every superstition. took great delight to be present at these examinations. as they were successively examined. who.JAMES THE FIRST. in order that he might himself listen to this infernal air like " who upon the trumpe did play the said dance before the — King's majestic. and forthwith apprehended upon her confession. was put into a " wonderful admiration^' by every new grotesque horror which their confessions disclosed. was an employment highly congenial to the credulous mind of James. 65 as anie that dwelled within the city of Edinljui'gh/' were denounced by her. Nor was this list confined to the lower classes. Day day he attended the examitrait of nations in person. Duncan who had. To trace out the wide field of witchcraft to which was opened him by the confessions of the ac- cused. and all versed in the traditionary lore of Sprenger and after Bodinus.

secondhj. Fian. liowever. * We need hardly remind our readers of the torture of Macbriar bv the Boots. He was put to the question. he appears. his tongue would not serve him to speak. he was put to the most cruel and severe pam in the world. after he had received three strokes. as appeared fi'om his conduct on tliis inquisition. being inquired if he would confess his damnable acts and wicked life. he was persuaded by fair means to confess his folly." (woidd it not have been as natural to have tried the fail' means first ?) " but that Avould prevail as little. "first. who. it All these disclosures. who under the name of Dr. in the Tales of my ' Landlord. may be antici- pated. by thr awing of his head Avith a rope. by no means of an edi- fying character. and apparently a per- son of dissolute character.G6 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. The named Cuningham.' . imder the influence of the agony produced by it. to have subscribed a confession. although. were not without a liberal application of the usual compulsitor in such cases chief sufferer was a person figures in the trials the torture." Being released from this instrument of torture. but a variety of particulars relative to his own life and conversation. before the Privy Council. also of sin- gidar strength of mind and firmness of nem^e. lastly. embracing not only the alleged charges of conspiracy against the King by means of witchcraft. called the Boots^. whereat he woidd confess nothing. — a schoolmaster near Tranent.

whereby they were made them that his legs were crushed unserviceable for ever. Old French. a smith's pmcers. And under his fingers were riven upon every naile there was thrust in two needles over even up to the heads. cei\ing his stubborn wilfolnesse.TORTURES. notit withstanding. for Fian. and who had appeared for a day or two to be "very soHtarye" and penitent. to the great discomposure of James. and on his reapprehension and second examination thought fit. where he continued a long time. who had been recommitted to prison. and abode so many blows in and beaten together as small as might be." The * doctor. did not long reqrdre their services but whether his confession was obfi'om torquere. " His nayles and pulled with an instrument called in Scottish a Turkas*. to deny the whole of the charges which he had previously ad" Whereupon the King's majestic." prescribed the following remedy for his relapse. the doctor never shrunke anie whitt. that the blood and marrow spouted forth in great abundance. contrived in the course of the next night to make his escape. At all which torments. Turquois. and the bones and flesh so bruised. 67 But the weight to be attached to this confession was soon made apparent by what followed. permitted.. p 3 . all convenient Then was he with speed by commandment conveyed again to the torment of the boots. be seen. neither would he then confess the sooner for all the tortures inflicted upon him. it will .

in a sudden fit of romantic gallantry. most obnoxious to his servants upon earth. and accordingly * Sir James Melville. Agnes Sampson. grave and settled in her answers. that they were " extreme lyars. a woman it is whom Spottis- wood describes as " matron-like. The A-isit adding.G8 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. when an unsuccessful attempt had been made against his life. to bring over his queen." James. it was re- . in fact. fr'om his singular piety. and the active part which. long before the composition of his ' Dsemonologie. the fiend pleaded (though we do not see why a Scotch devil should speak French) that he had no power over him. it certainly bears so a resemblance to that of the leading witch.' he had taken against Satan and his invisible world. " II est homme de Dieu'^. Nothing. it appears." which. On one occasion. he paid to Norway. can exceed the general harmony of at that the superstitious the accounts given by the different \vitches of their proceedings." that hardly to be wondered mind of James should have been confounded by the coincidence. tained by fair startling means or foul. even from James himself. except the ludicrous and yet hon'ible character of the incidents which they record. 294. had been. p. and which might well extort. was too favourable an opportunity for the instruments of Satan to be neglected. from the first. the observation he appears to have made in the commencement all of the proceedings.

to On All-hallowmas Eve the infernal of about two hundred. Satan undertook^ in the instance^ to raise a mist so as to strand the King on the English coast. and others of the sister- hood. solved 69 by the conclave that every exertion should infal(as be made to raise such a tempest as should libly put an end to the greatest enemy to Satan the himself confidentially admitted one of mtches) whom the devil ever had in the world. I . which appears had previously been drawn nine times through the cruikt. vol. for James. * Pitcairn. more is active measures being thought necessary. Fian. therefore The preparations were all commenced with first due solemnity. addressed a letter to a distingiiished -ndtch. as the devil's secretary. afterwards sea! Hola!" And this notable Avithout its efiect. giving the Avord to " cast the same into the charm was not whose fleet was at that time clearing the Danish coast." In what latitude they met with Satan cruizing about he is not stated. p. but after some his appearance. embarked. 211. partj^. and went into the number the same very substantially. or register. f Crook kitchen —the hook from which pots are himg oyer a Scottish fii'e. but. directing them to meet their master on the sea within five days. Dr. " each in a riddle or sieve. for the purpose of destroying the King^. Marion Linkup.CONVENTION OF WITCHES. as he called throughout these trials. i. made and dehit vered to Robert Grierson a cat.

And they were preceded by Gellie Dmican. the witches landed. Doctor Fian. which resembled about the pulpit. who. Gif ye will not go before. gret bournyng . while all the other vessels had a fair one. let me ! Here less their master common was to appear in a character in Scotland than on the Continent. his nose lyk the bek of an egle. Suddenly the de\dl himself started up in the pulpit. playing upon the Jew's-harp the following ditty " Cummer. blew up the doors. both black. The charm upon the water being finished." sailed so " substan- they moved on in procession towards the kirk of North Berwick. while another of the party. declared that his ship alone had the wind contrary. which they drank out of the same sieves in which they had previously tially. the kirk. goe ye before. devil's register. as they Dante. and blew in the lichts. as the took the lead in the ceremonies at black candles sticking round that of a preacher. which had been fixed on as their place of rendezvous with their master. The company exceeded one hundred. and after enjoying themselves with wine. his faice was terrible. Cimimer. acted as door-keeper. attired in a gown and hat. goe ye. thocht that handled him.70 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. dimmer. The sketch of his appear- ance given in Sir James Mehdlle's IVIemoirs has something of the power and pictm-esqueness of " His body was hard lyk ym. Grey Meill. of whom thirtytwo are enumerated in Agnes Sampson's confession.

" liis and leggis feit were berry. with clawis upon his handis. male and female. he then demanded of them whether they had been good servants. The un- fortunate beings who confessed these enormities could not. to whom. God be thankit. and what had been the success of their Gray Meill. and unquestionably the difficult sin- gular coincidence of their narratives remains at this day one of the most problems in the fate of the pliilosophy of Scottish history. The devil then proceeded to admonish them to keep his commandments. after the inhuman life tures to which he had been subjected. doorkeeper. FIAN. what they had done since the last time they had convened. who was rash enough to remark. could . that " naething ailet the King yet. 71 hanclis eyn " (occlii di bragia) . to which each answered by name.'^ was rewarded for this mal-a'propos observation by a great blow. and lyk the Griffin. Such is the strange story in which all the cri- minals examined before James and the Council substantially agree. on his leaving the pulpit.DR. the whole congregation. in that age of credulity. and spak with a first how voice/^ He called the roll of the congregation. did homage to him. moment tor- Fian. be for a doubtful. which were simply to do all the evil they could. by saluting him in a way and manner which we must leave those who are curious in such ceremonies to ascertain from the original indictments. the conjurations against the King.

But the most distinguished %dctim connected with this scene of witchcraft was Euphemia Macalzean. similar and burnt. though he had secured a conviction against her. there can be no doubt that she had been on terms of the most famihar intercourse with abandoned wretches of both sexes. strangled. fate. ^\Tiatever may have been the precise extent of this lady's acquirements in sorcery. or poisonings. a devoted adherent to the Roman Catholic faith. a woman of strong mind and licentious passions. he actually brought the assize to trial for wiKul error in acqiutting her on this point of dittay. way of the The number of sorat and attempts poisoning. charcrcd her in the indictment. almost . and that she had repeatedly employed their aid in attempting to remove out of the way persons who were obnoxious to her. another person said to have been present at the convention. strongly Avas the mind of James excited. agrainst who stood in the indulgence of her passions. Lord Cliftouhall. the daughter of an eminent judge. a partisan of Bothwell (who Avas accused by several of the Avitches as implicated in these practices against the King^s life). pretenders to witchcraft. though acquitted of this charge. was condemned on certain other charges of sorcery in the indictment: but so that. was condemned. ceries. be of jiot much value.t\C MAGIC A\D WITCHCRAFT. Agnes Sampson underwent a Barbara Napier. and a determined enemy to James and to the Reformed religion.

of Isobel Grierson. and dismembering dead bodies for destroying crops the pm-pose of enchantments. and of Douglas of Pennfrastone ." a fate which she endured with the greatest firmness. 1591. * Just. Her pmiishment was the severest which the com-t could pronounce instead of the ordinary sentence. . at which the King's death had been contrived. the unhappy woman was doomed to be " bund to ane staik and burnt in assis. quick. the ' DEemonologie. and of Grizel Gardiner"^. Eecords. of James Reid. to the death. though the jury acquitted her of several of these. of her husband's nephew. and various other meetings of witches. besides being present at the convention of North Berwick. mentioned among the un- printed acts for 1597. and more immediately the composition of that notable work of the Scottish Solomon.' of Bessie Roy. directing her to be first strangled at a stake and then burned.EUPHEMIA MACALZEAN. they competed her of participation in the murder of her own godfather. the King's mind. of In the trials Patrick Currie. rivals VO and. the accusations against Brinvilliers . that So deep and permato nent was the impression made by these scenes upon we owe them the prepa- ration of an Act of Parliament anent the form of process against witches. on the 25th of June. 1590-1610. the charges are principally of taking ofi" and laying on diseases either on raising men or cattle meetings with the devil in various shapes and places .

in the name of Jesus. for his patients Avere uniformly directed. by plaas in the tlirow- cing a dead hand. . which were placed before the fire or bmied Aiith the heads downward . or. but Bartie Paterson seems to have been the most pious of warlocks." The trial of Robert Erskine of Dim. by the simpler process of tailzie (slice) ing an enchanted door. though given as one seems to have ]\Iargaret been a simple case of poisoning. in addition to his prescriptions. no malefice (to use the technical term) was charged against him. to " ask theu' health at all livand vrichtis abone or under the earth. of beef against his It Avas immaterial whether the supposed CA-il. in the house of the intended victim case of Grierson. or some mutilated member. Diseases again were laid on by forming pic- tures of clay or wax. powers of the A^tch were exerted for good or In the case of Grie\'e. South-running water^ flints salt^ rowan-tree^ enchanted (probably elf-arrow heads). and the same in the case of Alison Pearson .74 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. scaring lionest persons in the sliape of cats taking away women's milk. for AA-itch. and doggrel verses (generally a translation of the Creed or Lord's Prayer) were the means employed for effecting a cure. he haA-ing merely resorted to a notorious Ir\"ine. . committing housebreaking and theft by means of encbantmentSj and so on. for witchcraft. named the herbs by which he despatched his . both were executed. but simply that he had cured diseases by means of charms.

that the stoppage of the which she was accused of having effected tlie Most of 4. t Feb. . Matters continued much I. set down to the agency The defence however. any more than the argu- ment mill. as being followed tal. 1629. that of Elizabeth Bathgate." This reasoning however appears to have made no impression on the jury. while asleep. was to be given to the confessions of the other who had sworn to the presence of the prisoner at some of their orgies . nephews." argued he. was unsuccessfid. by an acquit- In that of Katharine Oswald"^. though it seems to have been ably conducted. * in Yoimg's casef. one of which. that no credit witches. is remarkable. cases here cited are found in the Justiciary Eecords. " that they are not really transported.CHARLES THE FIRST. the prisoner's counsel had the boldness to argue. from about 1605 to 1640. " for all lawyers agree. in the same state dur- ing the reign of Charles From 1625 to there are eight entries of trials for witchcraft 1640 on the Record. in wliich they sometimes dream they see others there. but only in their fancies. 75 The case of Margaret Wallace^ towards the close of James's reign^ deserves notice as being the first against where something like a stand was made some of the fundamental positions of the 3 demonologists the counsel for the prisoner con- tending strongly against the doctrine that^ in the case of a person accused of witchcraft^ eveiy cure performed by her was to be of the devil.

he gave him a severe drubbing with a baton. and say.76 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. . twenty-nine years before. with the increasing dominion of the In 1640 the General Assembly passed all an act. close of this reign. " Rise up. towards the Puritans. to beat the ground three times with his stick. by sorceiy^ might have been the effect of natural causes. that ministers should take particular note of witches and charmers. ingj Tliey are not in general interest- though some of the differ a little Ha- milton* from the ordinary routine of Ha\'ing met the de^il on Kingston Hills. The scene darkens however. after setting forth the increase of the crime. namely. foul thief!'' On the other hand. Eecords. when Hamilton had neglected to keep his appointment. he was persuaded by the tempter to renoimce his baptism piece of apostasy for which he received only four shillings. whether voluntary or extorted details in the trial of does not appear. and that the commissioners should recommend to the supreme judi- cature the tmsparing application of the laws against them. In 1643 (August 19). for on one occasion. The dcA-il fui-ther directed him to em- the witch trials of the time. 1630. in East Lothian. they recommend the grant- * Just. — ploy the following polite adjuration when he wished to raise him. the devil's beha\'iour towards him was equally unceremonious. About one-half of the condctions dm-ing this period proceed on judicial confessions . Jan.

and Ayr. the year after the execution of Charles. are the cases in the must be kept in ^dew * Just. and 1649. not only does the victions. an Act of ParHament was passed confirming and extending the pro^dsions of Queen Mary^s. only one of which appears to have terminated in an acwhile at a single circuit-court. so as more effectually to reach consulters Avith witches. held at Glasgow. . for in 1649. 1643. had not eflFect. cases assume a deeper tinge of horror. seventeen persons were convicted and burnt for this crime. The subject appears I [ to have been I and their been without resumed in 1644. in 1659. About thirty trials appear on the record between quittal. this last date number of conJames had been and the Restoration. as it. it would seem. try. Eec. Stirling. impossible. in regard to whom it was thought (though we do not see why) that the terms of the former act were a little equivocal. Numerous however Records of Justiciary." to apprehend. Dec. From tliis time.THE PURITANS. ing a standing commission from tlie 77 Privy Council or Justiciary to any " understanding gentlemen or I magistrates. remonstrances. and abominable fancies of the 'Malleus' were revived in the trials of Janet Barker and Margaret Lauder"^. 1645. but the features of the The old. increase. which since the death of on the decline. and execute justice against the delinquents. which correspond in a remarkable manner with some of the evidence in the Mora trials.

inferior judges did at any time. occasional notices of the num- bers burnt are peiiDCtually occurring. of their own authority. cold. want of sleep. that these afford an extremely inadequate idea of the extent to which this pest prevailed over the countiy. and TMiitelock's jMemorials. On some occasions the clergy themselves prickers. For though Sir George Mackenzie doubts whether. and so numerous . was before them that the poor wretches " defirst lated" of witchcraft were nation. 1563./» MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. Lamont's Diary. that his astonishment at the gisters. Wodrow expresses in the Re- number found Under these commissions multitudes were In Mercer^s bm-nt in every part of the kingdom. try and condemn of Jus- criminals accused of witchcraft. The Court was anxious to get rid of a jimsdiction sufficient which would alone have afforded them and the Privy Council were in use to grant commissions to resident gentlemen and ministers. and afterwards to try and execute. actiially pci^formed the part of the flesh of and inserted long pins into the . famine. in virtue merely of the general powers given by the act. the same end was managed ticiaiy in a different Avay. or actual torture. AA-itches all over Scotland. In every case of the kind It it would appear that the clergy displayed the most intemperate zeal. Manuscript Diary. brought for exami- —in most cases after a preparatoiy course of solitary confinement. employment were these commissions. to examine.

were condemned on the second on new charges.THE RESTOKzVTTON. from the accused a confes- which might afterwards be used against them on their trial. . to obtain sion. just as habit and repute is now proved in cases of theft by that of a police officer. 1661). even though retracted. Fourteen commissions for trials in the provinces ap- pear to have been issued by the Privy Council in one day (November nameless wretches 7. Though the this tide of popular delusion in regard to crime may be said to have turned during the its reign of Charles II. and which in more than one instance. Of the numbers of who died and made no sign. In year after the Restoration (1661). the witches in order to try their sensibility in all . under the hands of those " understanding gentlemen'^ (as the General Assembly's overture styles them) to whom the commissions were granted. though acquitted on their first trial. The numbers executed throughout the country are noticed by Lamont.. two of whom. opening was perhaps more its bloody than that of any of the first predecessors. about twenty persons appear to have been condemned by the Justiciary Coiu't. formed the sole evidence on which the convictions proceeded. In some cases. where the charge against the criminal was that she was " habit and repute a witch. 79 and they laboiu'ed^ by the most persevering in- vestigations." the notoriety of her character was proved before the Justiciary Court by the oath of a minister.

and subscribed by all the clergymen. far more striking than anytliing to be fomid on the Records of Justiciary about this time. the former appears to have been four times examined at different dates between the 13th April and 27th May. 1662 considered and found relevant by the Justice Depute. gen- The paper is mai-ked on the back.'' The hand of a notary justly given for her last trial. * : . confessions are written under the pixblic. in the possession of the family of Rose." The part of Janet Braidhead's deposition. both from their minuteness and the unparalleled singularity of their contents. malefices. The names of these crazed beldames were Isobel Gowdie and Janet Braidhead. more particularly as the details they contain are. 1662. is torn off. and on one of these is a marldng by the Justice Depute Colville. before the sheriff and several gentlemen and mmisters of the neighbourhood . course of procedure we may in refer to some singular ma- nuscripts relative to the examination of two confessing witches Morayshire in 1663. Colville^. " Edinburgh. as fol- lows : — '' Having read and considered the confeswith divers sion of Isobel Gowdie. Avithin contained. Two of the latter's examinations are preserved . I find that a commission may be vciy A. of Kilravock. which appears to have boiiie a suuilar marking by the Justice Depute. July 10th. now almost impossible to form a conjecture. as paction Avith Sathan.80 it is MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. tlie In reference however to in sucli cases. renunciation of baptism.

ISOBEL GOWDIE. and yet the inconceivable absmxlity and monstrosity of these conceptions. to many of which we cannot even allude. where she was bap- by him with the name of Janet. ma guarda. The distinctness with which the visions seem to have haunted her. with the view of obtaining a commission to try and punish the crime. 81 as would ap- pear to have been the practice where the precognitions were to be transmitted to the Justiciary. being held up by a companion." Though examined on four different occasions. was baptized by the very iaajipropriate name of Christian. The band or coven to which * Her fellow-witch. and the devil sucking the blood from her shoulder^. and otlier witnesses present . fi'om the nature of her confessions. to conjecture. it is easy. at considerable intervals of time. What the result of Isobel Gowdie^s " last trial" was. tlemen. Her tized devotion to the ser^dce of the devil took place in the kirk of Auldearn. that a pretty complete institute of infernal science might be compiled from her confession. Braidhead. " Nou ragioniam di lor. of the whole life and conversation of the witches to whom she belonged. e passa. furnish some most important contributions to the history of hypochondriac insanity. the consistency they had assumed in her own mind. and imdoubtedly undergoing solitary confinement in the interim. so minute and invariable are the accounts given by Gowdie in particular. .

belonged consisted of thirteen (whose names she enumerates. 122. on which occasions Satan. it Some of these spirits. MacIIector. several spirits to wait upon him.) in the Bangarran Case. it appears. . did not stand high in Isobel's opinion for Robert the Jakes. wotdd appear. some appearing "in sad dun. Each is whose duty it is to repeat names of the party to hold who seems is after Satan." Each of the -witches too received a sobriquet. but The witches. A grand meeting of the covens takes place quarterly. was aged. and some of whom appear to have been apprehended upon her delation). placed at his right hand at feasts. provided -vnth an the officer. Sanders the Reed-Reever. common practice in the Infernal Law gives the nicknames of the Renfrewshire witches. some in grass green." Those of Gowdie's coven were. and a maiden. some in yellow. (Memorials. sway over the women. Thomas the Faiiy. and seemed to be " a gowkit glaikit spirit. still his feet are forked and cloven. "sometimes he had boots and sometimes shoes upon his feet. she says. and who is the particular favourite of the devil. Thief of Hell wait-upon-herself. some in sea green. on * This seems to have been a ritual. Swein the Roaring Lion. by which Satan himself had they were generally knoAAn''^. occasionally took considerable liberties with his character. " Robert the Jakes.'^ .82 tliey MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. given." and so on. that being the usual number of the covens. p. when a ball is Each \ntch has a "sprite" to wait upon her.

hares. 83 detecting the calumny. and "do not sanctify themselves. and pro" Horse and hattock. and cast up her hands to cape the blows. nouncing the following charm.AMUSEMENTS OF WITCHES. in stool. and Bessie Wilson would speak crustily with her tongue. ho ! ho !" they are borne through the air to the place of their destination. and did naething but greit and crye while he will be scourging him but INIargaret Wilson in Aiddearn would defend herself finely. etc. or mounting upon corn or bean straws." are described with the The amusements and occupations of the witches same firmness and minute- ness of drawing. used to beat the delinquents "up and down like naked gaists" with a stick. horse and go. This feat they perform g2 . be bellin again to him stoutly. the witches leave behind them. as Charon does the naked spirits in the 'Inferno/ He found it much more with his oar. a feature exactly cor- responding with the Mora trials. (Cant. they either adopt the shape of else. Horse and pellats. " was soft. iii. "Alexander Elder/' says the confessing witch. a their shape diet..) easy however to deal with the warlocks than with the fair sex. and could not defend himself. is When proceed- ing to the spot where their work to be performed. cats. If any see these straws in motion. besom or three-legged till which assumes their retm'n. and would ." the witches may shoot them dead. When the devil has appointed an infernal bed.

like" (gruffly) certain each witch receiving from Satan a these " Freischiitze. Another attempt against the is life of this minister described very grapliically. was consecrated by a charm dictated by Satan. " all on their knees. elf-arrow heads. confession. who had been destroyed by herself and her companions. intended for the destruction of the . who are described. and his assistants the elf boys. holding up their hands. which are manufactm'ccT by Satan himself. minister of Auldearn.84 Avitli MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. attempted to throw upon him. The instrument employed was " a bag made of the flesh and guts and galls of toads. the liver of a hare. olio being steeped all night." is number of A list of forty or fifty persons given by the witch. Harry Forbes. who made her way into the minister's chamber. and repeated by the witches. parings of nails. and toes. that destroy the said Mr. Another composition of the same kind. like the Scandina\dan trolls." which and mixed secundum artem by Satan himself. Harry. as little humpbacked creatures who speak "goustie . but was prevented by the presence of some other holy men in the room." This composition one of the witches. he might and looking stedfastly on the devil. and their hair about their shoulders and eyes. of feet. one of the witnesses actually present and subscriljing her . by these means while she also mentions that she had made an unsuccessful attempt against the life of Mr. pickles of corn.

and after a brief while flew out of the window and vanished. if It was appointed so it fall any of them shoiild it touch or tramp upon any of it it. Having prepared the venom. which however form a valuable appendix if to the records at that time. and they shortly died. thus describes the metamorphosis of his hostess at Larissa : "Pamphile divested herself of all her garments. We did to make this house heirless. them. stood above the gate. Pamphile was now in form a complete owl.ANECDOTES OF WITCHES." lover. Then uttering a low shriek she began to jump from the floor. : . and anoiated herself from head to foot and after much muttering. I was assured by Fotis. And then we. to some expectant And this was the last I saw of the old lady.'^ It is needless to pursue further these strange details. in his character of Lucius. and in as appears the trees opposite the gate. she began to rock and wave herself Presently a soft down covered her limbs. that. and other places. and scattered it up and down. where the lairds and their sons would most haunt. as well as that or any of on them. Apuleius. " they came to Inshock in the night time. and a paii* to and fro. From one of these slie selected a salve. of wings sprang from her shoulders her nose became a beak her nails talons. it and opening a certain cabinet took out of a number of boxes. lairds of 85 Park and Lochloy. above and about the gate. it should strike them with boils and it kill which did. Janet Braidhead. in the likeness of crows and rooks^. She winged her way. was more successful^ from the deposition of the other witch. It would seem as the 'sdolence of this popular * Taking the form of foul and ominous birds was a favourite practice of witches in all ages.

though he does not yet venture to deny the existence of the crime or the expediency of its pmdshment. 27. Fountainliall." And accordingly. p. " From the horridness "I do conclude that of crimes it requires the clearest relevancy and most convincing probature . i. Decisions.86 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT.^ the first appeared in the same year. " Since t Vol. of six years An trial interval for this now occurs without a crime. while the record bears that James Welsh "^ se- was ordered to be publicly whipped for accusing veral individuals of likely it. the crime. and that there seemed to be no other proof against them." says he. obviously speaks of the whole aftair with great doubt and hesitation. Sir George. 14. Jan. on which they were * Just. stated that their confessions had been procured by torture. in his ' And George Mackenzie. those cruel and too forward judges who burn persons by thousands as guilty of this crime. next to the wretches themselves. 1662. set at liberty. acting on these humane and cautious principles. Eecords. lays down many of all principles very inconsistent with the practice of the preceding century. . edition of which Criminal Law. in his Report to the Judges in 1680. —a fate which he was hardly to have encountered some years before. relative to a number of persons then in prison for this crime. in noticing the case of the ten poor women convicted on their own Sir confession in 1678tj. and I condemn. delirium began after 1662 to relax.

reported that there were twenty-four persons. out of about twenty we almost feel surprised that who were condemned. only five appear to have been executed. tried on a charge of sorcery against a girl named Christian Shaw. 3rd of May. 1697). though convicted by a plurality of voices. it is to be observed. The conviction of the ac- cused apj)ears to have taken place principally on tiie evidence of the girl herself. the Commissioners (in the Report presented by them to the Privy Council. and among them. that I know except one at Paisley by commission from the Privy Council in aimo 1697. The last trial before the After this." is v\ This observation of Lord Royston not altogether correct. who in the pre- sence of the commissioners played off a series of and convulsion fits. 1708. n liich 87 time/' adds Lord Royston. 9th March. on the Dumfries circuit. any other court. tried before Lord Anstruther. In this atrocious case. suspected of being concerned in the sorceries . male and female. nor before of. and a boy not twelve years ecstasies of age. where the prisoner. the daughter of Shaw of Bargarran. Court of Justiciary was that of Elspet Ride. hich he alludes is The trial at Paisley to evidently the noted case of the Renfrewshire witches. They were burnt on the gi-een at Paisley. " there has been no trial for this crime before that court. was merely sentenced . similar to those by which the nuns of Loudon had sealed the fate of Grandier the century before. is a girl of fom'teen.SUPERSTITIOUS ENTHUSIASM.

The on the cheek and banished Scotland last execution which took place was that of an old woman in the parish of Loth. important moral is to be gathered from the consi- deration of the history of this delusion . MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. as a gi'ievous transgression. and even in oui' own . only that sort of vague hold on the fancy which enables the poet and romance \\Titer to adapt it to the purposes of fiction. enumerated. namely. In 1735.88 to be biu-ned for life. the repeal of the penal statutes " contrary to the express laws of God \" And though in remote districts the belief minds of the ignorant. in 1743. printed in an act of their Associate Presbytery at Edinburgh. alchemy. or second sight. and therewith to point And. Captam David Koss. she sat composedly !" warming herself by the fire. as already mentioned. ex- ecuted at Dornoch in 1722. " It is said. by sentence of the Sheriff depute of Caithness. it may yet linger in the has now. of a truth. nual confession of national sins. no una moral or adorn a tale. who. which. in their an. that being brought of Little Dean. the weather proving very severe. the danger of encouraging those enthusiastic conceits of the possibility of direct spiritual influence. in one shape or other. out for execution. the penal statutes were repealed much to the annoyance however of the Seeeders. like the belief in ghosts. while the other instruments of death were made ready So ends in Scotland the tragical part of the history of Avitchcraft.

are the and active duties of life more neglected under the influence of this principle the charity which thinketh no evil of others daily becomes . along the path of persecution. or impels him. in this nineteenth century of ours. we have no enthusiasm. and Hohenlohe. as it formerly converted every natural occurrence into the actual now transforms every leader of a petty circle into a saint. the raptures of denborg^s prospect of the Sister Nativity. still but an emanation of that spirit of pride. Some persons assert that. Dee. according to the temper of the patient. the dreams of Dr." asserts an immediate communion and equality with them. which. refusing to be " but a little lower than the angels. the reveries of Madame Guyon. we have a great deal too much no period has enthusiasm of the worst kind been more rife witness the impostures of South- On at . are found to haunt the brain of the weak and presumptuous. and the thousand phantasies which are daily running their brief course of popucott larity. like a furious Malay. or Swe- New Jerusalem . practical Daily. the pro- phecies of Naylor. the contrary. which. . At no time has that calenture of the brain been more widely agency of the devil. and which shows in the quietism of Bourignon. For it is but the same principle which lies at the bottom of the persecutions itself of the witches.SUPERSTITIOUS ENTHUSIASM. and invests him with the garb and dignity of an apostle. 89 days. diffused. feeds him with the gorgeous visions of quietism. and Avhich.

if he had been wisely it. and already walking in a fancied their myrtle-crowned inhabitants. rarely Avhicli. working world. gulf. its sides own long hollow valley of Bagdad. tutional endure when age Thus. the islands. that. weary. while even in those whose evils to which away in vain minds are untinctured by the grosser enthusiasm gives rise. the phantasmagoria becomes dimmer and more dim. with . the genius who stood beside them its disap- pear . and camels grazing on — this sol)er. the en- and infirmity have shaken or removed the materials out of Avhich they were reared. thusiast who. through which. not idly dreaming side of the Eden for which he is by the waybound and so he . the bridge. as they are based only in pride and constisusceptibility. fulfilling the end for which he was sent into he should have been labouring onward with a beneficent actiAity. wliich of more rare. at public subscrip- tions for distant objects . has been contemplating through the long day the Elysian islands that lie beyond the feels. as evening creeps upon the landscape. like Mirza. with all its cares and duties. communion with in spite of all his efforts. . the stream of benevolence poverty and sickness at home. till at last nothing remains for him but his oxen. in short. old stole deep and silently tlirougli the haunts of is now but poorly compensated by being occasionally throAvn up in a few pompous and useless jets. sheep. life passes and illusive dreams of self-complacent superiority.90 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT.

are much more ancient than any of the forms of Christianity. only and its energies. were found bm'nt bones and vered limbs of dead bodies phical of the . It needs no ghost to tell the reader hoAV firmly the were. and perand the paramount necessity of exertion. Thearts. The work review of its of Church-Councillor Horst. portents. and Magic. how abject and unreasoning was their credulity. a most unlucky legacy bequeathed ancients believed in all supernatural influences how populous. and by Paganism to the creeds which supplanted it. leave however one least of the subject of hemisphere at urgy. 91 awakes to a conscioiisness of his true vocation in life wlien he is ceives the value on the point of lea\ing it. and how dependent both their public and their domestic life upon the exorcisms of the priest and the science of the augm*. lies behind when youth. were the ele- ments with omens. and the principal contents. with its opportunities. in their conceptions. These or at least the popular belief in them. Necromancy unnoticed. disse- and the most philoso- Roman poets recounts with compla- . The Canidias and Ericthos of antiquity were not mere creations of the poets the most sober and sceptical of historians does not disdain to relate that.PAGAN WITCHCRAFT. him for ever. like the shadows of a dream. in the house of the dying Germanicus. in fact. and prodigies.

or at a sudden encounter beldame or a blackamoor in the art of the ancients. few of those books which the sorcerers at Corinth burned and brought the price of them to . as scepticism increased in one direction.92 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. and there are few more cmnous chapters sophers. Neither were these infirmities of the mind by any means confined to the ^a^lgar or the profane. or affected to pry. The magical more especially towards the decline of Pagandom. cent gravity the charms by which the dead might did the belief in witches be evoked^ or the faithless lover recalled by his forsaken mistress. and who trembled ^vith a a hare crossed their path. Paul. in the history of human inconsistency. On the contrary. gi'ey of the morning. into the very " incunabula \it0e." the ancient wizards pried. at a sinister flight of crows. Nor and supernatm-al agencies decay or decline with the disbelief in the state-religion which marked the latter ages of the Roman Empire. credulity and abject superstition grew and prevailed in another." Could we recover a St. than the lives of many of the philo- who argued if against the being of a God. The later Platonists were deeply infected with the malady of superstition. the poet of the iEneid " Sin has ne possim naturae accedere partes Un- mindful of the wise and reverent forbearance of Frigidus obstiterit circum praecordia sanguis. was indeed of an extremely dark and atrocious complexion.

and to banish their ministers. and enough to . was both early and deeply infected with the orgiastic worship of the East. especially with the of Isis. 'we should probably find in tlieir 93 pages^ among some curious physical or medical secrets^ nearly all the elements of a cruel and obscene superstition. for the In an age of unbelief there was a passion mysteries of darkness.' traces with great acuteness the connection between the superstitions of the Heathenism. the abraca- dabra of quacks. and although Christianity gradually superseded Paganism in form. In Lucian and Apuleius indeed we are presented with a singular and terrible aspect of social existence. and especially among the ignorant rural population. we know. and the loathsome furniture of Sidrophel's laboratory are genuine descendants of the impostures and abominations which were practised for ages both in the Roman and Parthian empires. his erudite James Grimm. Dark Ages and the magical formularies of The spells of witches. the spirit of the latter long survived in the multitude. life The most ordinary acts and functions of invisible were believed to be affected by the powers. the Isiac and impure ceremonies of the priests It was of no avail to level to the ground chapels.LUCIAN AND APULEIUS. Rome. in tiquities of the work upon the ' An- German Race. and those powers were supposed to be willing to do service to all who were malignant fearless enough to seek their aid.

" My master. from the philosopher first who dis- puted about a police. men to consult with and to question the elements for signs and wonders. "As on entrails. joints and limbs. lieved It is easy to decry the weakness and detect the absurdity of such a creed.94 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. of all the lerably good man. but it was an earnest. but more intense. unsiu'passed for horror by any of the di'cariest legends of Pagan or Medieval sorcery. and the miner who rarely beheld either sun or star." It is idle to regard such a belief as a perficial all mere su- or individual superstition. was a well-behaved. tohis wife. Availing ourselves of Sir George Head's excellent translation. the baker. With answerable pains. belief ^^•hich di'ove diviners. but women . we its extract from the ' Golden Ass' is of Apuleius a story Avhich. It pervaded ranks of society. It was an erroneous. : Yet was be: it excited terror : it nurtured revenge it wrought withering and wastmg eflPects upon the it cast a dark shade feeble and the credulous : was potent over the sinews of the strong and over the bloom of the beautiful it exercised " upon the inmost mind" all " its fierce over life : it : accidents/' and preyed upon the pui-est spii'its. to our conceptions. to the cause. and the magistrate who \iewed religion in the light of a useful system of shepherd who watched Orion and the Pleiades. serve the apprenticesliip whicli was demanded it of them.

she be- sought of her one of two things conciled to her — either to soften him to a -siolent the heart of her husband. In the first endeavour the sorceress totally set whereupon she about contriving the death of my unfortunate master. treacherous. failed. obstinate. penurious^ yet profuse in dissipation. So one day. and whose spells and incantations were of power milimited. She. malevolent. Having conciliated this woman by gifts and urgent supplications. faithless to expenses of her husband. that. She was cruel. half. was the most wicked creature in existence. about noon. there entered the bakehouse a bare-footed woman wearing a mourning mantle thrown across . or if unable to do that. to send a ghost or some evil spirit to put death. together. by Hercules. One day said that the baker had procured a of divorce against his execrable helpmate.nature were collected of that common cess-pool. The heart like a woman was the evil dispositions most deteswhere of om.clad. and continually rendered his home such is a painful scene of tribtdation to him. and this intelligence turned out in due time to be true. 95 in the world. To effect her pm'pose. she raised from the grave the shade of a woman who had been murdered.THE baker's wife. many the time and oft that I have silently deplored his table all fate. exasperated by the proceedings instituted against her. so that he might be re. a cheat and I heard bill it a drimkard. communi- cated with a certain woman who had the reputation of being a witch.

and her front locks streaming over her face. The moment they were ceiling. they pushed against strength. and was nowhere to be seen. in history or in tion. of the ghost to mind a climax of terrors. it A. presents to the wliicli and fatal its ciTand had been accomplished.96 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. his and a considerable period had elapsed without returning. and taking him gently by the hand. if she had private intelligence After the baker had departed. and knocked very loudly. either its breaking the hinge or driAdng out of socket. They then perceived that the door was carcfvdly locked and bolted. disappeared. called several times. within the chamber. the servants Avent to his chamber-door lence. as to communicate. after continued siand thumped still harder than before. licr her shoulders^ pale sallow features marked by a lowering expression of guilt. upon which. for fic- wc do not know where. and led him into an adjoining chamber. to find a counterpart. and. at once concluding that some serious catastrophe had happened. they saw the baker hanging quite dead l)ut from one of the beams of the the woman who had accompanied him had liAing.ith their utmost and by a violent it effort. Unexpectedly ap- proaching the baker. her grisly dishevelled hair sprinkled with ashes. when grave. they ef- fected an entrance by force." This evoking of the dead to destroy the this warring of a corpse with a living soul. . she drew him aside. and its foul then the sudden dismissal.

—by fire applied to consulting the stars. 97 The Lex Majestatis. by casting nativities." or the letters of the alphabet. by waxen images. The following extract from Ammianus on so " mait Marcellinus affords an example of this treasonable sacrilege. The Romans indeed. is The principal deponent said to have been brought " ad summas angusH . or contemning as the ai't Greek adventurers or Egyptian priests. offence this double-handled Rome Against one and sure-smiting enagainst the crime gine was frequently levelled^ viz. by casual omens. gave to the current impostors of those days an appellation which Camof bridge wranglers nobility. now account equal to a patent of The following story seems to have been substan- tially a deposition taken before the magistrates of Constantinople. or law of effectual High Treason. led to the expulsion of the thematicians'' fi'om Italy. profoundly ignorant of science. This was done in va- rious ways. many occasions. and extracted from the Avitnesses or defendants by torture. neither of whom were in good odour with the government at any period. weapons placed in was one of the most the hands of its and terrible which the imperial constitution of military despots. ^'numeros Babylonios. but especially by certain permutations and combinations of num- bers.HIGH TREASON. the practice or suspicion of which. or the charge of inquiring into the probable duration of the Emperor's life. by em- ploying prophets.

Beside the table stood a certain man clad in linen. Terrible were the auspices^ awful the charms. With his other he held and shook a ring which was attached to curtains.08 tias" MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. with a handkerchief bound around his head. table was placed a round dish. and having linen buskins or boots on his feet. we made up of laurel boughs. "which is now produced in court. The ring thus shaken dropped ever and anon between the interspaces of the letters. welded of divers On the rim of the dish were engraven metals. verses. — to the last gasp almost^ before lie "vroiild confess. the twenty-four letters of the alphabet. long and painful the dances. such he recited a set formulary of as are Averruncal gods. separated from one another by equal and exactly measured spaces. after the fashion of that which stands before the curtain at Deli)hi. and . procedure. ^diich And as often as we consulted this disc or table. the following was our mode of It was set in the midst of a chamber had previously been well purified by the On the smoke of Arabian gums and incense. Avhich preceded and accompanied its construction and consecration. He waved in one hand a branch of vervain. and which had often before been used for such mystic incantations. spun from the finest Carpathian thread. wont to be sung before the He that stood by the table was no ordinary magician. "Tins unlucky table/' lie said. that propitious herb.

the bright and smooth ring." The lingering belief in the old religion. in their turn. when we inquired who per- chance would succeed to the reigning Emperor. and afterwards a final S. assail direct^ or ferret out perseveringly the superstitions which The . E. attack the The Pagan Csesars new religion as a formidable antagonist the Christian emperors. among the struck together T. The indifference of the magistrate gives place to an intolerant and indig- nant tone of reclamation.LATER PAGAN SUPERSTITIONS. It is curious many and instructive to remark the increasing earnestness with which the decaying creed of Heathendom which the sought to array Christianity. O. itself against the encroachments of The hght persiflage with philosophy of the Aiigustan age treated the statereligion nearly disappears. like ivy around an oak. tions : We asked no more ques- seeing that Theodorus was the person whom and in we had sought for. so that one of the bystanders at once exclaimed that THEO[DORU]S was the emperor designated by the Fates. leaping letters. much after the manner of the who manage the chidian Apollo. H. the magical and thaumaturgical practices which had. wliich the sorcerer combined into number priests und measure. formed by striking the letters together 99 certain words. oracles of the Pythian and Bran- Then. was productive in the decline of Paganism of poetical forms of superstition. gradually accrued to it.

like that Adsionary banquet in the wilderness. of palaces reared in a night and disHmning in the day. all which Milton has adorned with 'Paradise the graces of imagination in his Lost. upon those Such conceptions of blessing or of bale were embodied in strange — who honoured or abjured them. it seems. narratives of weeping or jubilant processions of majestic forms when the moon w'as hid in her va- cant interkmar cave. of banquets. power.100 MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT. One result of the consoHdation of Western Asia with Europe. under the Roman Empire. 1. subtlest beast of retaining in full vigour his powers of assuming tempting forms and uttering beguduig words. the field. was The to spread widely over the latter continent the germs of the ser- pent-worship of the East. deformity. on the other. ancient gods are no longer regarded by either their worshipers or their opponents as simply deified heroes or men^ but iDeings. to disport himself among . and disease. ignominy. The superstition of the Lamia. as powerful and mysterious evil.' We tives can afford room for only two of the narraof demoniac influence in which the later their belief in the influence of Pagans expressed the early gods. on the one hand. was wont. of of fair enchantresses demons assuming the shape beguiled who men to their un- doing. informed with demoniac energies and ca- pable of conferring temporal good or —beauty. and Avealth.

with much to the dismay of his fair hostess^ many tears and embraces. left He offered her consolation. litter and drowned in He and began by inquiring the cause of her Faithless servants had carried off her her lone. cloyed with sweets. hour however he . and the pair. were ushered into slaves with torches awaiting their absent mistress. under the shape in some hopeful youth who was stiidying philosophy schools of Athens or Berytus^ or some neophyte in the Christian Church. However this may have been. and garnished with effulgent plate. now become with all a sumptuous banqueting hall. At She led him to a lordly palace of the city. where a board was sjDread covered the delicacies of the season. besought him In an evil to forego his wish. A fair young gentleman at Corinth had been abroad on a pleasure excm-sion^ and might perchance be returning home a Httle the worse for wine. at the gates of Corinth he encounin the tered a damsel richly attired. "beautiful exceedingly/^ but with hair dishevelled. and his arm did not decline. distress. 101 the sons and daughters of men which he deceived our general mother^ the overEspecially did he delight to entrap curious Eve. But at length. In this palace of delight the young man abode many days. taking no account of time. he proposed inviting a party of his college friends. in a which she bye street its been.LATEE PAGAN SUPERSTITIONS. where he had never yet marble portico waited a crowd of fond. who. wldch she accepted. also. tears.

2. deeply read in conjurors' books. But among the undergraduates came a grave and grey college tutor. had the charm lasted awhile longer. Astarte. and . who could detect by his skill the devil under any shape. persevered^ and his rooms were filled with gownsmen. and was grev/ ill-bred enough to stare the lady not only out of also. — —he applied his case. marvelling much. the plate. as his only remedy. to a spot just without the gates. the wines vanished also and in place of columns was a loatlisome serpent. an indiscriminate form: she . called the Pagan's Tomb. but out of her beauty the palace melted also She pale. To redeem himfor he to a The sage heard and adcertain vised him. his soul would have become the fiend's property. and in place of the damsel v\Tithing in the agonies of dissolution. city. A young man had sorely offended the great goddess Venus. The white- bearded fellow had scanned and scotched and slain the snake —the Lamia—but he destroyed his pa- tient also. had recently married a wise astrologer. fair wife. not Avithout emy. at the good fortune that had befallen their chum. the viands. and ceiled roofs was a void square in Corinth. countenance. to go on a night. for Lucius became a maniac. no one knew how or why. Pale and silent the old man sat at the festive board. at its very noon. Lucius. — to station himself . or. as she was called in his native the Syrian Byblus. melted away. self from the curse upon his board and bed. livid.102 MAGIC ANB WITCHCRAFT.

LATER PAGAN SUPERSTITIONS.
on the roof of
it,

103

and to

recite,

at a prescribed

moment, a
sel,

certain formulary, with which his coun-

learned in magical law, furnished him.

the Pagan^s

Tomb

accordingly the young

On man

placed himself at the noon of night, and awaited
his deliverance.
fines

And

presently, towards the con-

of morning, Avas heard a sound of sad and

solemn music, and of much wailing, and of the

measured tread of a long procession. And there drew nigh a mournful company of persons, who might have seemed men and women, but for their
extraordinary stature, and their surpassing majesty

and beauty

:

and the young

man remembered

the

words of the magician, and knew that before him

was the goodly company of the gods
forefathers

whom

his

in

past

generations had worshiped.

One

only of that august and weeping band was

borne in a chariot

—the

god Saturn

—perhaps by
Astarte to

reason of his great age; and to Saturn he addressed his prayer, which was of such potency
that Saturn

straightway

commanded

release the petitioner

from the cm'se she had laid

upon him.

We
a

have been able merely to indicate

how wide

beyond the proper domain of medieval witchcraft. It would be cui'ious to trace the similarity of the Heathen and Christian superstitions, or rather the derivation of one from the other. But we must reserve this subject to some other
field lies

101

MAGIC AND AVITCHCRAFT.

occasion, and conclude with repeating the wish

with wliich we commenced, that some competent

hand Avonhl midertake

to

trace

througli

all

its

ramifications the obscm'e yet recompensing subject

of ]Magic and Witchcraft.

THE END.

JOHIf EDTVABD TAYLOR, PriXTEB,

LITTLE

QUEEN STEEET, LINCOLN'S INN FIELDS.

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