This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Accusation Of Witches In Puritan, New England

1677 words - 7 pages

The American weakness in times of trouble is the instinctive act of finding a scapegoat. Stemming from the Calvinistic religious beliefs of the Puritans who immigrated to America, anything that strays from the predestined lives of these puritanical people is the result of sin. The ideas of "original sin" and "predestination" are at the heart of Calvinism. Thus, the Calvinist Puritans have their lives planned out for them by God before birth and anything that disrupts that plan must be eradicated. It was on the basis of this stringent religious way of life that the witch-hunts on 1692 came about. The accusation of people, beginning in Salem, Massachusetts and quickly spreading throughout the Puritan community began because the Puritans needed a scapegoat for their problems. The Puritans accused people of being a witch for actions that were hardly considered illegal and usually had to do with a threat posed to the church. Webster's Dictionary defines a "witch" as 1. A woman practicing the black arts; 2. A charming or alluring woman; 3. An ugly old woman; 4. One supposed to possess supernatural powers with the devil or a familiar. The last definition being the only applicable definition here is hardly pertinent. The phenomenon of the witch-hunts in Puritan New England rose out of flawed theory, sexism, and fear as seen in John Winthrop's account of the trial of Anne Hutchinson, the actual transcript of the trial of Anne Hutchinson, and Arthur Miller's The Crucible.

The argument over "Covenant of Works vs. Covenant of Grace" is, in the Puritan community, of greater importance than the argument over the separation of church and state. The idea behind the two covenants is that in the covenant of works, one can do good deeds and, thereby, get him or herself saved in the eyes of God. The covenant of grace is the belief that people are predestined to be saved or damned and there is nothing that can be done by those damned individuals to change that. The Puritans believe the latter, though some members of the community believe the former. The idea that people were chosen by God, predestined, to join God in heaven was the foundation of the Puritan religion and furthermore, the Puritans believed that God made it obvious which of these people were preordained to live eternally in heaven. Thus, these chosen people, somehow marked by God for "saving" were the constituents of the Puritan community. Anne Hutchinson radicalized that theory when she stated that she had a divine revelation during which God told her she was saved. Her claims of self- sanctification outraged John Winthrop and led him to the belief that she was a witch. This idea of a flawed theory, the disparaging ideas of sanctification vs. justification, preached by the Puritans and refuted by Anne Hutchinson is exemplified in John Winthrop's account of the witch trial of Hutchinson. In the Winthrop account of the trial, it explains Hutchinson's theory as "1. The person of a Holy Ghost...

Find Another Essay On The Accusation of Witches in Puritan, New England

The Role of the Witches in Macbeth

1622 words - 6 pages The Role of the Witches in Macbeth In the play, Shakespeare used the witches to represent the supernatural, evil, a destructive force and an inversion of natural order. At the time the play was written, people believed this, and feared witches. People believed that witches had the power to change the weather and other special powers such as predicting the

The Roll of the Witches in "Macbeth"

730 words - 3 pages William Shakespeare builds a mystifying and ominous atmosphere in the opening scene of Macbeth, by integrating the three Weird Sisters to imply the evil that continuously lurks throughout the play. The witches are used as prophetic equivocations, made to entice human desire and manipulate human weakness in order to commence Macbeth's downfall.The witches assume a prophetic role within the play. They give the audience hints as to the events that

The New England Primer

541 words - 2 pages Goel 1Anu GoelMrs. DefineHonors American Literature26 September 2014J is for Jesus: The New England Primer"My book and Heart/Shall Never Part" (The New England Primer 2). A primer is a book that is used to help children learn to read. In The New England Primer, the heart's connection the Bible is an allusion for the letter H; it enforces the necessity of attachment to the Bible, one of the many other Biblical references that are made throughout

The New England Patriots

906 words - 4 pages Rush as head coach. In 1971 the team changed their name from the Boston patriots to the New England Patriots. In 1974 they started of 5-0, but finished 7-7. In 1976 they finished 11-3, but were defeated in the first round of the playoffs to Oakland. In 1978 Wide receiver Darryl Stingley was paralyzed by a cheap shot from another player. In 1980 the Patriots drafted Steve Morgan and Stanley Morgan who are now hall of famers. In

The Differences Which the Regions of New England and Chesapeake Developed in the United States

510 words - 2 pages , plantation owners relied on them to become their own indentured servants. New England was north of the Chesapeake, and included Massachusetts Bay Colony, Plymouth, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New Haven (which soon became part of Connecticut). The New Englanders were largely Puritan Separatists, who sought religious freedom. They came in large groups, or families, bringing with them their children and servants because they wanted to permanently settle

Settlers and Differences in the New England and Chesapeake Region of the US

845 words - 4 pages DBQ Second Draft In the early 17th Century, great quantities of people emigrated from Great Britain to begin their individual lives again in the New World. These people, once in the New World, trans-located across the eastern side of the United State, and by the 18th century, despite their English ties had formed into two distinctly large communities mainly the New England and Chesapeake regions. Although the New England and Chesapeake regions

Basic concepts of Puritan ideology, Why were Puritans left England, Puritan ideology and religion

1578 words - 6 pages established themselves to the new land (America) in 1623.William Bradford was the first Governer of New England as expected. He wrote the fameous text, "Of Plimoth Plantation" . He was the hero of puritans. The most known puritan of all and died as the richest puritan man. After He died The "Of Plimoth Plantation" was handed from father to son for several generations, with little or no change of the orginal text. This text was NOT written for publication

The Witches of Macbeth

754 words - 3 pages Many scholars over the years have analysed these characters, and looked for the deeper symbolism in Shakespeare's Macbeth and it's characters and themes. Appearance versus reality is one of the biggest themes in Macbeth, and it is greatly authenticated by Lady Macbeth and the three witches. These characters take on many faces throughout the play to be able to sympathize themselves better with the other characters, so much in fact, that the

Hypocrisy of Puritan Society in the Scarlet Letter

964 words - 4 pages Hester wants to return to England. She wanted to return to the place where Puritans wanted to escape from. Hester finally decides to stay in Boston because it is her punishment fro her sin. The ignorance of the community and the plan that Hester makes exemplifies satire.Hawthorne's constant use of satire mocks the Puritans and Puritanism. He points out the flaws in the Puritan philosophy and the community. He portrays how many of the Puritans only

Criticism of Puritan Culture in Hawthorne´s The Scarlett Letter

2610 words - 10 pages During the pioneer developmental stages of the United States, early colonists traveled and endured through prolonged distances from England to the New World in order to escape religious persecution, rooted mainly from Protestant beliefs. These early colonists were deeply embedded within their Puritanism and surrounded their overall livelihood based on the teachings of the Puritan Bible in the unchartered British colonies of North America

Differences In Colonial America: New England And The Chesapeake

1288 words - 5 pages the Puritans and they settled in New England. They wanted the new land to have a special mission in the world. The people attracted to the Puritan movement were not only religious reformers but also men and women who hoped to find changes in English society. They disapproved of the growing withdrawal from traditional restraints of individual action. They worried that individualistic behavior would undermine the notion of community involvement

Similar Essays

Child Rearing In Puritan New England Essay

1525 words - 6 pages 1. Using the primary sources in chapter 2, child-rearing in Puritan New England was described as the responsibility of Puritan parents. By introducing their children to the importance of education, Puritan parents agreed that child-rearing is a methods that will help ensure their children’s spiritual welfare (Hollitz, 22). The two main goals Puritans taught their children are reading and writing. It is a system they believed that will

The Scarlet Letter: Title, This Is About The Use Of Symbolism And The Political Status Of Women In Puritan New England And How It Relates To The Scarlet Letter. It Is A Critical Analysis

1044 words - 4 pages makes use of symbolism and feminine status in Puritan New England, giving The Scarlet Letter a complex plot.American transcendentalist Nathaniel Hawthorne was born on July 4, 1804 in Salem, Massachusetts to Elizabeth Manning and Nathaniel Hathorne (Stewart 2). It is said that Hawthorne inherited his father's sternness, moodiness, and desire to stay to himself (3). Hawthorne spent his college years in Maine (13), and married Sophia Peabody in 1842

The Witches' New Clothes Essay

1035 words - 5 pages The Witches’ New Clothes In Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, the author challenges the reads to ponder whether or not the witches foresaw the events of the play, or caused them to occur themselves. AS the play begins, Macbeth was a good, honest man, and loyal to his king; but upon meeting the three witches and hear their “prophecies,” he beings to defy that role by entertaining thoughts if becoming king. After writing to his wife, the Lady Macbeth

Puritan Conflicts In Early 17th Century England

1745 words - 7 pages Puritan Conflicts in Early 17th Century England Individual free will allows for a variety of different beliefs to be cultivated. Unfortunately, people do not always accept a variety of ideas. One area in the human experience that has long been disputed is religion. Religion is such a controversial topic that it has been the cause of many wars such as the Crusades and the Thirty Years’ War. The people involved in these wars