Magic and Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe (HIH1542)
Between 1450 and 1650 around 100,000 people were put on trial for witchcraft across Europe, a figure far higher than in earlier or later centuries. These witch trials are challenging for historians to interpret and prompt us to address questions such as: Why was witchcraft such a concern at this time? What led people to accuse neighbours who they had known for years? What fears did stereotypes of witches reflect, and how widely accepted were they? This module will examine these questions by using a range of primary sources including trial records, treatises written by intellectuals, art, literature, and archaeology.