❝ I'm no more a witch than you are a wizard, and if you take away my life, God will give you blood to drink.❞
In 1692, four-year-old Dorothy Good and her pregnant mother were arrested at the start of the Salem witch hysteria. Dorothy's testimony helped convict her mother, who was hung on Gallows Hill. Dorothy herself was imprisoned for more than eight months without a trial.
Eighteen years later, Dorothy's father petitioned the General Court for a reversal of attainder and restitution. In his affidavit, he claimed that his then 22-year-old daughter had been driven mad by her imprisonment and could not care for herself. He was awarded £30, one of the largest sums granted to the witchcraft victims.
This is a fictionalized account of her life.
● child abuse
● spiritual abuse
● witch hunts
● early colonies
Read an excerpt:
Now the arrival of Sir William Phips to the Government of New-England was at a time when a Governor would have had occasion for all the skill in sorcery that was ever necessary to a Jewish councellor; a time when scores of poor people had newly fallen under a prodigious possession of devils, which it was then generally thought had been by witchcrafts introduced. It is to be confessed and bewailed that many inhabitants of New-England, and young people especially, had been led away with little sorceries, wherein they did secretly those things that were not right against the Lord their God; they would often cure hurts with spells, and practise detestable conjurations with sieves, and keys, and pease, and nails, and horseshoes, and other implements, to learn the things for which they had a forbidden and impious curiosity. Wretched books had stolen into the land, wherein fools were instructed how to become able fortune-tellers: among which, I wonder that a blacker brand is not set upon that fortune-telling wheel, which that sham-scribler that goes under the letters of R. B. has promised in his Delights for the Ingenious as an honest and pleasant recreation: and by these books, the minds of many had been so poisoned that they studied this finer witchcraft until, 'tis well, if some of them were not betray'd into what is grosser, and more sensible and capital. Although these diabolical divinations are more ordinarily committed perhaps all over the whole world than they are in the country of New-England, yet, that being a country devoted unto the worship and service of the Lord JESUS CHRIST above the rest of the world, He signalized His vengeance against these wickednesses with such extraordinary dispensations as have not been often seen in other places.
The devils which had been so play'd withal, and, it may be, by some few criminals more explicitly engaged and employed, now broke in upon the country, after as astonishing a manner as was ever heard of. Some scores of people, first about Salem, the centre and first-born of all the towns in the colony, and afterwards in several other places, were arrested with many preternatural vexations upon their bodies and a variety of cruel torments, which were evidently inflicted from the daemons of the Invisible World. The people that were infected and infested with such daemons, in a few days time arrived unto such a refining alteration upon their eyes, that they could see their tormentors; they saw a devil of a little stature, and of a tawny colour, attended still with spectres that appeared in more humane circumstances.
These tormentors tendered unto the afflicted a book, requiring them to sign it, or to touch it at least, in token of their consenting to be lifted in the service of the Devil; which they refusing to do, the spectres under the command of that Blackman, as they called him, would apply themselves to torture them with prodigious molestations.
The afflicted wretches were horribly distorted and convulsed; they were pinched black and blue: pins would be run everywhere in their flesh; they would be scalded until they had blisters raised on them; and a thousand other things before hundreds of witnesses were done unto them, evidently preternatural: for if it were preternatural to keep a rigid fast for nine, yea, for fifteen days together; or if it were preternatural to have one's hands tyd close together with a rope to be plainly seen, and then by unseen hands presently pull'd up a great way from the earth before a crowd of people; such preternatural things were endured by them.
— Cotton Mather, 1697
|h o m e ● a b o u t ● b l o g ● b o o k s ● l i n k s ● e x t r a s ● c o n t a c t|