Essay about Witchcraft In U.S. History

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The religion of Witchcraft dates back about 25,000 years, to the Paleolithic Age, where the God of Hunting and the Goddess of Fertility first appeared. Out of respect for the overwhelming power of Nature grew a belief in beings, gods, who controlled the winds, the seas, the earth and the fires (Rinehart). People have been slaughtered for ages because they had different belief systems or they simply were not liked. Whether they were witches or not, hundreds of thousands of people have been burned at the stake, dunked in freezing rivers, or otherwise tortured because people accused them of being witches.

People have been moving over to get a better life Shortly after Christopher Columbus sailed across the Atlantic trying to get to India
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One of them would be the midwife, and they saw her through the labor. They provided her with a mother’s caudle, which was warmed ale or wine with sugar and spices. They also blocked the keyholes in the room and hung heavy drapes over the windows. This served to separate the mother from normal household affairs. No men were allowed in the house during the birth period.

(Marshal 53)


Problems arose when a baby was stillborn, malformed or died soon after birth. On these occasions the mother sought to blame outside influences. Often, a woman who had not been chosen to be one of the people involved may feel she had been unfairly treated, and if she voiced these beliefs and the baby was harmed in some way, then the woman who was not included was often blamed. (Marshal 53)

It has been believed those accused of witchcraft were lonely old women who lived alone on the outskirts of the village and possibly had knowledge of the healing properties of herbs. (Marshal 54)

It is true to say that women were the healers who gathered the herbs and made up the medicines. It was a strong fear that these women could use their knowledge of herbs to harm as well as well as heal. It would also be true to say that “old” women (around 40 or 50) were believed to be “useless” to the community. Such marginal women were feared dangerous, due to a desire seen in them to affect the community in a craving for

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