Witches And Its Effects On Society Essay

Witches And Its Effects On Society Essay

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The word “witch” is defined as a woman who is thought to have magic powers, and also as a person who practices magic as part of a religion (such as Wicca) . You might ask yourself, how did witches come to be? Well, witches started out as “healers”. Healers were around thousands of years ago when modern medicine and treatment for illnesses was not an option. Witches were very skilled in their ability to come up with herbal solutions and remedies for illnesses. They were very wise in their knowledge of herbs and homeopathic remedies. Eventually though, witches and their practices would become threatened as the rise of Christianity came across Europe. Many of the Puritans feared the witches and what they could do with their healing powers. The church viewed this “healing” as evil sorcery and thought that the witches were even doing the devil’s bidding, which they referred to as witchcraft. Witchcraft is defined as the use of magical powers obtained especially from evil spirits, the use of sorcery or magic, communication with the devil or with a familiar . This hysteria from the church is very similar to how the Salem Witch Trials came to be.
During the fourteenth century, people in that time were always fearful of how they would die or what would happen to them next. Whether it be death by starvation, death by exposure, or death by savages the people were fearful especially of outsiders. This fear is what allowed for the accusations of people to begin. In January of 1692, in Salem, Massachusetts, two young girls started the epidemic. Elizabeth Parris, 9 years old, and Abigail Williams, 11 years old started having fits, this included having violent contortions and outbursts of uncontrollable screaming. The local doctor, William Grig...

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...elp give money leads to a tragic ending.
Along with their strong beliefs, the Puritans also viewed their duty to get rid of the “sinners” or in that time the witches. The afflicted girls would single out the outcasts, the social deviants, and those who strayed from the Puritan values. For example, Sarah Osborn, one of the first accused, previously had a premarital sex scandal and did not attend church regularly. The fact that Osborn was viewed as a sinner, as many other that were accused, played a huge role in her accusation and conviction. The accused witches were extremely easy targets because in the Puritans’ eyes they had failed to uphold the moral code and therefore had to be punished. Rather than having cold hard evidence of the accused being witches, their convictions were based on word of mouth, testimonies, and opinions of young girls.

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