The Salem Witch Trials: Rebecca Nurse's Trial

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In a courtroom in Salem Massachusetts a woman on trial makes a bold statement following the jury’s guilty verdict, “you are a liar. I am no more a witch than you are a wizard, and if you take away my life God will give you blood to drink (Brandt).” This woman, Rebecca Nurse, was taken to Gallows Hill along with four other women charged with the same crime to be hanged on July nineteenth. This was one out of hundreds of men and women and even animals who were accused of witchcraft and then thrown into jail to await their trial and execution. The Salem Witch Trials was one of the darkest moments in American history in the late sixteen hundreds.
In Salem, Massachusetts 1692 a couple young girls started to act strangely. They began to have fits
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“Legally, spectral evidence was not grounds enough for convicting a witch. The judges in Salem, however, accepted it, and this in itself makes Salem unusual (Brandt).” The Salem Witch Trials were mostly fueled by the people’s fears and resentments toward their neighbors. Out of all the accused and convicted, Rebecca Nurse’s execution is one of the few we remember the most because of who she was. Most of the people who were accused of witchcraft had been outcast in the community, people who seemed like they had something to hide. This made them an easier target to be accused because they hadn’t established themselves in the community as trustworthy people. Rebecca Nurse, however, was respected and loved by everyone in the community. She was an active member of her church and hadn’t given any reason to be suspected. When she was arrested there were many people who were shocked and asked for her release. Rebecca Nurse was not released, but nobody believed she would be convicted. She was found not guilty, but then a few of the young girls who were supposedly bewitched started acting up. After that the judge asked the jury to reevaluate their decision. The jury went over the evidence again and Rebecca Nurse was then found guilty and was executed on the …show more content…
His wife had been accused and examined, and after her execution, the people feared that he had helped his wife with her craft. He was afraid if he was convicted his estate wouldn’t be passed down to his children. He wanted his children to be safe so he refused to enter into a plea, stopping his trial from progressing. Back in that time the law says that anyone who refuses to enter a plea could be tortured in an attempt to force a plea out of them. This legal tactic was known as “peine forte et dure” which means “until he either answered or died (Brooks).” The most common form of torture they used was to press someone. When someone was pressed, they would strip the prisoner out of their clothing and lay them on the ground with a board placed on top of them. Large, heavy stoned would be added gradually, slowly pressing the prisoner to death. They would be pressed day by day until they either entered into a plea or died. Giles was one of the first to be pressed during the Salem Witch Trials and was pressed for three days. He died on September 19, 1662. The death of Giles Corey increased the doubts people already had concerning the Salem Witch Trials, but even with all this doubt the trials continued. No one believed that all these people could actually be guilty of this crime in such a short amount of time, and no one wanted innocent people to be convicted. It was even said that “It were

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