A Trial of Witches: A Seventeenth Century Witchcraft Prosecution


by: Bunn, Ivan
Format: Paperback

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Product Description In 1662, Amy Denny and Rose Cullender were accused of witchcraft, and, in one of the most important of such cases in England, stood trial and were hanged in Bury St Edmunds. A Trial of Witches is a complete account of this sensational trial and an analysis of the court procedures, and the larger social, cultural and political concerns of the period. In a critique of the official process, the book details how the erroneous conclusions of the trial were achieved. The authors consider the key participants in the case, including the judge and medical witness, their institutional importance, their part in the fate of the women and their future careers. Through detailed research of primary sources, the authors explore the important implications of this case for the understanding of hysteria, group mentality, social forces and the witchcraft phenomenon as a whole. From Library Journal In 1662 Ann Denny and Rose Cullender were tried and hanged for witchcraft in the English market town of Bury St. Edmunds. Geis (criminology, emeritus, Univ. of California, Irvine) and English historian Bunn do an admirable job of recasting the tribulations of the two women in a trial they characterize as rife with error. Attempting to understand how this miscarriage of justice occurred, the authors examine witch hunts in America and Europe, finding that although more penalties were levied in France and Italy, nonetheless too many took place in England and America. They also discuss the behavior of the protagonists: Sir Matthew Hale, a distinguished legal scholar, and Sir Thomas Browne, a physician and author of Religio Medici. Although more narrowly focused, this scholarly book compares favorably with Richard Trask's Devil Hath Been Raised: A Documentary History of the Salem Village Witchcraft Outbreak of March, 1662 (Yeoman, 1997). Besides its obvious historical interest, this work is a commentary on uncritical acceptance of information of dubious worth. For large public and academic libraries.?Mark Herring, Oklahoma Baptist Univ., Shawnee Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. Review 'In addition to its value as a historic record, this book offers a tragic lesson in the extraordinary willingness of people to rely uncritically on tainted information and do awful things.' - Publishers Weekly, December 1997


Product Code: 9780415171090
ISBN: 0415171091
Publisher: Routledge
Publication Date: 1997-11-05
Number of Pages: 308 pages
Languages: english
Edition: 1
Dimension: 5.47 x 0.83 x 8.5 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.04 pounds