The finger has been pointed; she is a witch! For people living during the renaissance, in the reign of King James I, they were convicted to death as quickly as that.The idea of witches and witchcraft can be traced back to the Romans. Although witchcraft was around for years there was little counts of action against them; until the Renaissance. During the Renaissance, sixteenth century, many people were put to death for being suspected of witchcraft. The hunt for witches all occurred because of a theory and the ruler, King James, of the time.
Witchcraft has been around since the beginning of time, but in the sixteenth century a new theory developed off the basics of Christian theology. “This theory was that a witch had made a deliberate pact with the devil, almost a form of a personal arrangement, but that a witch did not act alone. Therefore if one witch existed in a locality, there had to be more” (James I and Witchcraft). This new theory led to a total change in ...view middle of the document...
Women took care of their houses and children which at times consisted of making home remedies to cure illness. Herbs and plants were brewed to make ointments for medical purposes. As the fear of witches and witchcraft expanded in Europe the Catholic Church added to their definition of witchcraft as “anyone with knowledge of herbs as those who used herbs for cures did so only through a pact with the Devil” (Elizabethan Witchcraft and Witches). Older women who lived longer often new more remedies and where convicted of being witches. Anyone who was found with such herbs were automatically sentenced to death by burning. This sudden change in Christian theory can be linked to King James I himself.
Witchcraft was around for hundreds of years, but what made the sudden change in thought in 1590? The issue very well could have been King James himself; he was known to be an “expert” on witch hunting. In the year 1950, “three hundred witches were accused of gathering to plot the murder of King James… these trials were of especial interest to him and he suddenly developed a very keen interest in demonology and witchcraft” (James I and Witchcraft). King James considered himself such an expert on witches that he wrote an eighty page book which he titled “Daemonologie”. King James was simply intensely interested in the supernatural. Not only did he believe that witches were chosen by the devil to destroy, but that kings were chosen by God and given their throne by divine right. If it was not for King James’s fascination in witchcraft the craze would have not grown in England so quickly.
The hunt for witches during the Renaissance was all a result of a new Christian theory and the deep interest by King James I. Royalty interest spread to people of all walks of life, leading to hundreds of people being wrongly accused and as a result put to death. Witches were never really witches, they had no pacts with the Devil. They were simply normal everyday people.
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