In the 16th century, Reginald Scot, a prominent critic of the witch trials, translated כָּשַׁף , φαρμακεία, and the Vulgate's Latin equivalent veneficos as all meaning 'poisoner', and on this basis, claimed that witch was an incorrect translation and poisoners were intended.
The cases became more common in the end of the 16th-century and the early 17th-century, particularly since the succession of James VI and I to the throne. King James had shown a great interest in witch trials since the Copenhagen witch trials in 1589, which had inspired the North Berwick witch trials in Scotland in 1590.
This was the European Witch Craze that Fueled the Salem Witch Trials. The European Witch-Craze spanned over centuries during the early modern period, resulting in the deaths of thousands across Europe. Most were coerced into "confession" by torture and other means of extracting a "confession" of being a witch and committing maleficium.
The idea of witches was born out of a shear lack of knowledge. Without science, the people of the 16th century had no idea how to explain things like lightning, storms, illness and death. Instead of straining to find rational answers, these not so logical people blamed every odd occurrence on witchcraft. drawings.
Regardless, through his active pursuit of witches, James VI will likely remain inextricably linked to the Scottish witch trials of the 16th century, which fills a forever a dark and uncomfortable chapter in Scotland's story. Facts vs Myths. There's a morbid curiosity surrounding the methods used to extract confessions from accused witches.
In Salem, Massachusets, a suspected witch was weighed against a metal bound bible. In Oudewater in Holland, the weighing house became famous during the 16th century when those accused of witchcraft travelled from as far away as Germany and Hungary in order to prove their innocence.
Teachers' notes. This document collection includes various documents relating to the witch craze in 17th century England. It allows students and teachers to develop their own questions and lines of historical enquiry on the nature of beliefs and behaviours, the role of the authorities and legal restraint, attitudes of communities or the role of women in society.
Four hundred years ago, hundreds of innocent people were killed as an obsession to stamp out Satanism swept the British Isles. Dr Suzannah Lipscomb investiga...
In the late years of the 16th Century, witch hunts reached their peak. In some German cities historians estimate that as many as 900 "witches" in a year were killed, often after agonizing torture to force out confessions; in some villages hardly a women was left alive.