Witchcraft in Europe and the New World, 1400-1800 / Edition 1

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This book illuminates the way in which people in the early modern era framed their ideas about the Creator and the created universe in terms of magic. This perspective informed and molded theology, philosophy, the law, medicine, and the sciences, as well as offered practical help with the problems of everyday life. The study of witchcraft (as a particular manifestation of this mental world), helps to illustrate many of the key concepts which governed both defenders and, later, opponents of the magical Zeitgeist.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Its survey of shifts in thinking about witchcraft provides background information that students will appreciate..."--Carla Gardina Pestana, The Historian

"The book is small but its scope is broad, both chronologically and geographically." --Choice

Maxwell-Stuart (U. of Aberdeen) has put together a text based on the requests of her students: not a collection of anecdotes nor an abbreviated survey, but a succinct guide to some of the principal themes with enough accompanying material to illustrate the points made and direct readers to more extensive treatments. Attitudes, influential treatises, effects of the Reformation, and geographical differences are among the topics. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780333764657
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 6/28/2001
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 128
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.27 (d)

Meet the Author

P. G. Maxwell-Stuart is Research Fellow in History, University of Aberdeen.

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Table of Contents

Themes and Definitions
• Late Medieval Attitudes to Witchcraft
• Two Influential Witchcraft Treatises
• The Effects of the Early Reformation
• A Widespread Intent to Prosecute
• Witches in the North and East
• Witches in the New World
• The Decline in Prosecutions
• Bibliography
• Index

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