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The History of Witchcraft
The History of Witchcraft

The History of Witchcraft

Pocket Essential series


160 Pages, 5 x 7 1/2

Cloth, $17.95 (US $17.95) (CA $23.95)

Publication Date: November 2009

ISBN 9781904048770

Rights: US, CA & MX

Oldcastle Books Ltd (Nov 2009)
Pocket Essentials

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The witch in history was a very different creature from her modern counterpart, and this guide examines in detail the growth of the ideological, cultural, and legal concepts that eventually led to the carnage of the Witch Craze in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Witchcraft has been undergoing a huge popular revival, but does modern pagan witchcraft really bear any resemblance to its historical antecedents? This guide explores the historical background to the European witchcraft phenomenon. For both Medieval and Reformation scholars alike the Devil and all his works were a very real threat. Their conviction that witches were the servants of Satan led to the formation of perhaps one of the greatest conspiracy theories of all time: a belief that witches were working in league with the Devil in a diabolical plot against all Christendom. Witches were transformed from poor deluded old women who rode out at night with the pagan goddess Diana into devil-worshipping heretics who became the focus of a centuries-long, Europe-wide campaign determined to seek out and destroy this evil wherever it was to be found, regardless of whether any of its victims were actually guilty or not.


"The history of witches and their craft can be a matter of heated debate among modern pagans. If, like me, you have heard many different points of view but are not an expert in the subject, a book outlining the facts and fallacies, and detailing what has been written on subject in the past, is useful. The History of Witchcraft by Lois Martin is such a book."  —A Bad Witch's Blog

Author Biography

Lois Martin lives in Somerset and has spent many years studing the history of European witchcraft, folklore and superstition. She is the author of A Brief History of Witchcraft.