The Salem Witch Trials were the most famous, most deadly, and most studied witch trials in the British colonies according to author Brian Pavlac. (138) What started out as innocent child's play ended with 19 deaths and one killed by being pressed to death with stones. The events were gruesome, tragic, and filled with irrational behavior. The people of Salem, who were mostly of a puritan background, were driven by fear, to stop those who were consorting with the devil, and cleanse their town of all evil. This however, remains to be seen as the true intention of all of those involved with the witch hunts.
N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013. Wigfall, Lyric "Salem Witch Trials Notable Persons." Salem Witch Trials Notable Persons.
12 Nov. 2013. http://www.history.com/topics/salem-witch-trials 5. "Salem Witch Trials Facts – Witchcraft Accusations from 1692-1693." Totally History Salem Witch Trials. 14 Nov. 2013. http://totallyhistory.com/salem-witch-trials/. 6.
Several centuries ago, many practicing Christians and people of other religions strongly believed that the Devil could give a few people known as witches the power to cause harm to others for their loyalty. In the 1600s, a Reverend’s daughter and niece started having “fits”; they would scream, throw things, make weird noises, and put themselves into strange positions. Claiming that they were being “bewitched” by other townspeople, these young girls caused one of the most controversial court cases ever to be considered: the Salem Witch Trials. Some of the witches were tortured and thrown into jail; they had to pay for their food and many other things. They also had to pay for the chains they were held in; many of them died in these very chains.
During the years of 1692 and 1693 the fear of witchcraft swept through Salem, Massachusetts like a plague. Witchcraft strongly defied Puritan beliefs, and the Puritans executed any accused witches. Throughout the hysteria in Salem, 185 people were accused of practicing witchcraft. Rumors of witchcraft put many people’s lives in danger. Witchcraft was defined as entering into a compact with the devil in exchange for certain powers to do evil.
The Salem Witch Trials began when Betty Paris, Abigail Williams, and some of their friends began to act strange with odd fits (Hall 1). Because many mental and emotional disorders were not understood, the people of Salem believed it was the work of witchcraft. When sickness or even misfortune came, the most Bednar 2 sensible reason was witchcraft (Godbeer 28). The Salem Witch Trials were a prime example of the prejudice in early America with the different personal lives and beliefs (Adams 26). The prejudice and panic caused much instability in the Salem comm... ... middle of paper ... ...n in Salem.
The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and 1693 was a tragic set of events that took place in Salem, Massachusetts (Salem is now Danvers, Massachusetts.) It began with a “witchcraft craze” from 1300-1600 in Europe, when thousands of people were murdered, accused of performing witchcraft, the devil’s magic. In January of 1692, Reverend Samuel Parris’ daughter, Betty Parris, and niece, Abigail Williams, began behaving strangely, including screaming, throwing things, making strange noises, and putting themselves into weird positions. A doctor suggested that the girls had been afflicted with witchcraft. Ann Putnam also had similar symptoms.
"Understanding the Salem Witch Trials." EDSITEment. 26 Nov. 2013 . "What Caused the Salem Witch Trials." What Caused the Salem Witch Trials.