Read e-book online Agents of Witchcraft in Early Modern Italy and Denmark PDF

By L. Kallestrup

ISBN-10: 1137316977

ISBN-13: 9781137316974

ISBN-10: 1349593559

ISBN-13: 9781349593552

This ebook bargains a comparability of lay and inquisitorial witchcraft prosecutions. In lots of the early smooth interval, witchcraft jurisdiction in Italy rested with the Roman Inquisition, while in Denmark in simple terms the secular courts raised trials. Kallestrup explores the narratives of witchcraft as they have been laid ahead by means of humans fascinated by the rigors.

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Extra info for Agents of Witchcraft in Early Modern Italy and Denmark

Example text

This small Latin pamphlet was used regularly by the inquisition as a manuscript, long before it was published in print in 1659. 71 The German historian Rainer Decker has recently identified Giulio Monterenzi (d. 1623) as the author of Instructio, and dated the text to between 1593 and 1603. 72 All three manuals are rooted in the teachings of Thomas Aquinas, which assert that magicians are guilty of heresy and apostasy. Prattica and Sacro Arsenale take the form of instructions of general procedures and list various crimes against the Catholic faith.

Summis desiderantes referred to both male and female magicians, while Malleus malefifi carum focussed entirely on the female sex. It is equally worth noting that the selfish motives of the magician have now been replaced by the idea that witches harmed their surroundings without any particular reason except out of evil. The role of the Devil had also shifted. 56 Summis desiderantes is the only official statement from the Catholic Church that described the diabolical witch as, for example, someone who committed herself to the Devil and caused harm with her witchcraft purely for her own pleasure.

The group of accused that risked facing the death penalty was very small. The majority of the convicted actually wanted to be reconciled with the Church – records from Orbetello show that this meant everyone. Even though the Roman Inquisition seldom found the death penalty necessary, this did not mean that those convicted could escape with promises of repentance and improvement. The inquisitor required the guilty to observe a number of penances such as prayers, confessions, participation in the mass and so on.

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Agents of Witchcraft in Early Modern Italy and Denmark by L. Kallestrup

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