Causes of the Salem Witch Trials Essay

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From the beginning of time there has been conflict between the views of different people and their different groups. Conflict has brought prejudice and fear into communities around the world. As conflict is an inescapable part of any society, it can be expected to extend to the greatest impact possible. The Salem Witch Trials are one such conflict. This conflict caused many to be accused, arrested, and killed. Because of social, economic, religious, and physical problems within the community, Salem Village was present with prejudice and panic causing the Salem Witch Trials. Witchcraft has been present in many other religions, not only the Puritan religion. Witchcraft was also found in Catholic and Protestant parts of Europe. The Salem …show more content…
The accusations were over by October 1692, and by then less attention was on the accusations (“Witch Madness” 2). But by the time the accusations and hangings were over one-hundred forty-four people were accused and nineteen were hung (Hinds 70). Some were only accused because they were associated with or related to a supposed witch, like Elizabeth Proctor whose grandmother was a supposed witch (Hinds 40). Or Rebecca Nurse whose mother was accused of witchcraft (Kent 58). They believed in the idea that a supernatural cause, whatever the source, was used to cause them harm (Godbeer 30). People were even rewarded for their fear and panic over the truth and the braveness of the society (Shapiro 2). Five people died in jail during the trials, including a baby (Hinds 64). One man, Giles Corey, was pressed to death for refusing to admit to being a wizard, after changing his view on his wife’s guilt as a witch (Hinds 43; “Witch Madness” 2).
Certain social reasons might have also been the start of the Salem Witch Trials and the accusations. The young girls that started the accusations might have been the beginning to the trials. The girls might have started accusing people because during the winter the Salem Village was completely cut off from Salem Town, the nearest town available (Langley 1). The girls had few things to occupy their time because the Puritans hated free time (Kent 8). The Puritans believed that studying the bible should be done in
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