In 1692 there was a thing going around, it was called “Witch Hysteria”. It started off with a girl named Abby. Abby cousin has been a sick child since birth, Abby lived with her uncle and aunt and her cousin, and with two slaves. This “Witch Hysteria” started when one of the slaves (the girl slave) started showing a group of girls (Abby’s other cousins) some magical stuff. Until something went wrong, well that's what they think. So one day the group of girls and the slave were doing what they do every day when the priest left to go to work. The little girl was there with the group, when they started to do magical stuff, the little girl freaked out. Then when Abby went to go see what was wrong with her, Abby started to do the same thing. The salve freaked out and went to calm them down. As the slave walked away to calm the girls, the other girls (the cousin's ) started to look more at the cup and they started to freak out. The priest came back and saw the group of girls freaking out and ask them what was going on. After that, only the little girl stops freaking out. Abby was still freaking out. The aunt and uncle called the doctor. The doctor couldn't seem to find out what was wrong with Abby, the little girl on the other hand didn't eat for two days, didn't talk and couldn't walk. The doctor told the uncle (priest) that the girls might be cursed by a witch. All of the priests came to the girl's house to bless them. Abby was telling the priests and her uncle that there were
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During the 1600’s in the United States there was much economic and religious dissention within the Puritan society: a group of English reformed protestants who pursued the Purification of the Church of England. Among these issues, is the hysteria of the Salem Witch Trials that prosecuted women to be found worshippers of the devil. The Puritans found the necessity to exercise this crusade in order to stay by their moral codes of conformity which included witchcraft to be the greatest crime, punishable by death. However, the true reasons of the trials was not to simply follow their religious constitutions. It is mainly in part from corruption of religion and how some had used the trials as a form of personal gain, the influences of the attitudes from the strict Puritan lifestyle, the need for unification between the Salem factions, and the society’s fear of evil.
The Salem witch trials were a result of mass hysteria. It was caused by false accusations. On May 1693, fourteen women, five men, and two dogs were executed for supposed supernatural crimes. The Salem trials have a unique place in our collective history today. (" Saxon, V,Procedure Used in...").
From the time of the 1690’s the entirety of Salem, Massachusetts were Puritans. “The Puritan lifestyle was restrained and rigid: People were expected to work hard and repress their emotions or opinions. Individual differences were frowned upon.” (Salem Witch Trials, The World Behind the Hysteria). These people believed that doing anything sinful would result in punishment from God. Just as much as they believed in God, they also believed in the Devil. Keeping up with the Puritan code, it led to the first women being accused of witchcraft. They were viewed as pariahs, and seen differently. Had the Puritan government let the afflicted defend themselves, not be so dependent on religion, not investigating the facts or scrutinize the trials the killing of many could have been prevented. The hangings from the trials would ultimately be the last in America.
The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 was first brought about as a game by young adolescent girls in Salem Village, Massachusetts. The young girls had falsely claimed they were possessed by devilish beings which were innocent men and women of Salem Village causing an uproar of witchcraft in their village. I believe the great hysteria of the Salem Witch Trials was solely out of boredom, meaning it was a break from the norm and caused excitement quite easily. Those who were accused went to “trial” but given the behavior of the young girls who had claimed to be possessed made it impossible to walk free. Those who went to trial were hanged at the hanging tree for the practice of witchcraft whether there was proof or not.
Witchcraft is the use of magical powers. Witchcraft is often regarded as “black” magic. The article called “The Salem Witch Trials: 1692-1693” states that “[s]ince the early fifteenth century, so-called witch panics had periodically swept across Europe, causing witch hunts, accusations, trials and executions” (“Salem” 1). Although some children and males were accused, the greater part of the arraigned individuals were female (“Salem” 1). A debatable amount of around forty thousand individuals were implicated and executed as witches between fourteen hundred and seventeen hundred and fifty (“Salem” 1). Although the causes of the witchcraft hysteria are debatable, there are three widespread and favored explanations for the hysteria within
In 1692, the British colony of Massachusetts endured abnormal accusations of witchcraft against more than 150 people (Prentice Hall Literature, p. 1087). Many factors caused the witchcraft hysteria to come alive during the 1600’s. Two important factors were: Daemonologie, written by England’s King James I, and the bewildering behavior of the accusing teenage girls. While Arthur Miller explains that the accusations could have been made over the lust for land, there are also reasons not explained: how the role of women and children during the 17th century may have affected their behavior and the theory of Ergot fungus poisoning the girls’ minds.
Stacy Schiff’s national bestseller The Witches highlights the suspicions, betrayals and hysteria of the Salem Witch Trials. In 1692, the commonwealth of Massachusetts executed five men, fourteen women, and two dogs for witchcraft. One might wonder how and why this Puritan colony became so caught up in this witch frenzy. In this book she is able to paint a clear picture of the panic that occurred among the people of Salem.
The persecution of witches started in the fourteen hundreds and carried on into the seventeen hundreds. This persecution happened only in the Catholic and Protestant Countries. They were not just endorsed by the churches, but the entire craze was caused by the churches; which gave its full support behind the cause. While the persecution of witches effected every type of person the most effected people where older women, poor, and usually considered outsiders by their society.
History shows the remarkable things that society has done over the years, it also shows where society failed and mistakes were made. This is the case of the Salem Witch Trials. The people of Salem experienced an event that would change them and the course of this country forever. The mass hysteria and rampant paranoia that swept New England in 1692, is what turned neighbor against neighbor. The Salem villagers would accuse one another of casting spells, consorting with the devil, and being witches, all of which was a punishable crime in the 17th century. ("Search")
In Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, he writes, “We are what we always were in Salem, but now the little crazy children are jangling the keys of the kingdom, and common vengeance writes the law!” (Miller 77). This partially fictionalized tale of the Salem Witch Trials points to one of the causes of the trials, vengeance, but the over dramatized tale 's early stages were quiet. The Salem Witch Episode had humble beginnings in the town of Salem Village, Massachusetts, but evolved into one of the most widely known witch trials in American History. The gallows in Salem claimed the lives of nineteen men and woman during the spring and summer of 1692 due to the accusations of witchcraft with over a hundred people who were accused. After all the terror and the uproar of the trials occurred, everything came to a screeching halt (Linder 1). Due to the unique circumstances of this particular set of witch trials, from the rampant accusations to the discontinuation of the trials mass hysteria does not seem to be fault as with other witch trials, but a variety of factors. The Salem witch trials were not just a simple case of mass hysteria, but a combination of factors ranging from poisons to superstitions to scapegoats, resulting in the outbreak of the Salem Witch episode.
The witchcraft hysteria of 1692 happened within the Puritan colony known as Salem Massachusetts. It’s important to know that the belief in witchcraft was carried over from their home country, England. In England, an act of witchcraft was considered treason against the Church of England, not to mention the king, who was the head of the church, so if one was to turn their back on the church also meant going against the king. Many acts against witchcraft were passed, the one dated closest to the Salem witch trials was the Witchcraft Act of 1604 that moved trials of the supposed witches from churches to actual courts. The fact that they were once held in churches rather than courts seems like a biased situation to me. The puritans were afraid of witchcraft so having the church conduct the trials of said witches could only mean that death was certain. The puritan faith to my understanding was a tough faith to follow, especially for women.
Witch hunting was the persecution and possible execution of individuals considered to be ‘witches’ loyal to the devil. It was an all too common occurrence from 1603-1712 all over Europe. However in order to understand why this happened the context must be taken into account. It was a time of change, the Renaissance - the rebirth of culture, ideas and attitudes to living. The Reformation had also only been implemented in England in the last 80 years back from 1603, when it had previously been catholic for centuries. The English civil war from 1642 to 1651 is argued to have played a part in the intensification of the witch hunts in England due to the peak in executions whilst it was on going. Some historians have taken the view that in time of crisis certain groups can be victimised like in wars, famine, disease outbreaks and changes in society structure.
It began in 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister 's daughter began to scream and convulse, while other girls manifested the same symptoms. Their doctor suggested one cause, witchcraft. That grim diagnosis launched a Puritan inquisition that took 24 lives, filled prisons with innocent people, and frayed the soul of a Massachusetts community called Salem. It ended less than a year later, but not before the hanging of 20 men and women, including an elderly man who was crushed to death. The hysteria spread quickly, involving the most educated men and prominent politicians in Salem. Aside from suffrage, the Salem witch trials represent the only moment when women played a central role in American history. There are many theories as to what caused the mass hysteria of the Salem witch trials and the bewitchment of several young girls including the lack of freedom and want of attention from young girls, the role of religion and Satan in Salem, lack of verifiable evidence, economic and social divisions within the community, and the possibility of ergotism.
Most historians agree that the witch craze began in the 15th century, during the early modern period. However, many factors that contributed to the witch craze had been brewing for several centuries prior, in as early as the 12th century we see the persecution of heresy by the Medieval Inquisition, which is basically a large-scale model of religious groups suppressing and killing anyone who does not agree with them, or speaks out against them. This similar type of rational is seen happening in Colonial America: men, women, and children who were educated, and spoke out against the social norms were labeled as witches and targets of hate crimes.