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It is clearly evidenced that the convicted must have been innocent. One cannot deny whether the children were afflicted or not, but their afflictions were not caused by the accused. Salem Witch Trials serves as a good example of tragic consequences which can never be reversed either when it is caused by religious misunderstandings, family squabbles, and imaginations as a result of fears with no valid root. Even though the prosecutions by hanging were lastly done in 1692 on witches, they left a historical mark that may never be forgotten. The innocent were ruined both economically and spiritually. In fact life cannot be compensated by whichever means. As much as there are rights to have religious rights, such mistakes should never be allowed to happen. There should be the freedom to any religion and in areas where others don’t fit into ones religion then the convincing power should be used to persuade him or her leave his religion and then join the hands together.
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In 1692 a major tragedy occurred in America, the Salem witch trials.
In regard to the Salem witch trials, however, it was Mather'sinterest in the craft and actions of Satan that won him an audiencewith the most powerful figures involved in the trial proceedings,several of the judges and the local ministers in Salem. Before theoutbreak of accusations in Salem Village, Mather had alreadypublished his account, (1684),describing in detail he possession of the children of the Goodwinfamily of Boston. Mather actually took the eldest of the children,13-year-old Martha, into his home to make a more intense study ofthe phenomenon. Later scholars have suggested that this book infact outlined the symptoms of clinical hysteria. It was this samehysteria that provided the behavioral model for the circle of"afflicted" girls during the trials in Salem. Mather, however, usedhis experience with Goodwins to further his notion that New Englandwas in fact a battleground with Satan. Similar themes appear in hissermons and in the Preface to one of his children's books, in whichhe warns young readers: "They which lie, must go to their father,the devil, into everlasting burning; they which never pray, Godwill pour out his wrath upon them; and when they bed and pray inhell fire, God will not forgive them, but there [they] must lieforever. Are you willing to go to hell and burn with the devil andhis angels?". Thus, the subject of eternal damnation weighedconstantly upon Mather's mind, and it resonates in his own diaryaccounts. Scholars suggest that Mather's dramatic descriptions thedevil's activity upon the young Goodwin children may have led tothe first cry of witchcraft among the young girls in SalemVillage.
Although Mather was not directly involved in the proceedings ofthe Salem witch trials, he wrote a letter to one of the magistratesin the trials, John Richards of Boston, urging caution in the useof spectral evidence. Mather was also the author of the "Return ofthe Several Ministers," a report sent to the judges of the Salemcourt. This carefully-worded document advised caution in the use ofspectral evidence, saying that the devil could indeed assume theshape of an innocent person, and decrying the use of spectralevidence in the trials, their "noise, company, and openness", andthe utilization of witch tests such as the recitation of the Lord'sPrayer. However, the final paragraph of the document appears toundercut this cautionary statement in recommending "the detectionof witchcrafts". Thus, in Bernard Rosenthal and Perry Miller'sopinions, the courts interpreted the letter as Mather's seal ofapproval for the trials to go on.
Salem Witch Trials Notable Persons
The witchcraft hysteria in Salem, Massachusetts resulted from the strict Puritan code which aroused the girls interest in superstition and magic and caused strange behavior....
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Elizabeth Proctor: The Salem Witch Trials Widow – …
In the beginning of the play, Hale enters as a strict law abiding citizen enjoying his position of power and his ability to make the decisions in Salem....
Salem Witch Trials | Premium Essay Help
This paper will discuss the events leading up to the Salem Witch Trials and the events that took place during and after the trials, and the men and women who were killed or spent the remainder of their lives in jail....
Essay Topics For Salem Witch Trials
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Salem Witch Trials Essay -- Essays Papers - …
In conclusion, the Salem Witch Trials was however done on errors. There was no valid truth on the evidences that the convicted practiced witchcraft (Burgan 41). One of the girls had bragged to a colonist that the whole intention was for sport thus faking their unusual behaviors and illness. In 3rd January 1693, Governor Phips nullified all the testimonies which were given by the afflicted children, and he strongly prohibited usage of all spectral evidences. As the number of the named witches grew there was now a greater fear that emerged on being falsely named as a witch which led to trials. The opposition grew against the Salem Witch Trials which led into second thought to them that participated. Some even renounced their testimonies as witnesses while Samuel Sewall who was a judge admitted on the errors he had made during the ruling publically in 1697 (John par 16). There were financial reconstitutions which were made to the family members who were related to them that had been executed which amounted into approximate 570 pounds.
Salem Witch Trials – Native Essay Writers
No one knows the truth behind what happened in Salem. Once witchcraft is ruled out, other important factors come to light. Salem had suffered greatly in recent years from Indian attacks. As the town became more populated, land became harder and harder to acquire. A epidemic had broken out at the beginning of the decade. Massachusetts was experiencing some of the worst winters in memory. The motives of the young girls themselves can be questioned. In a society where women had no power, particularly young women, is it not understandable how a few adolescent girls, drunk with unforeseen attention, allowed their imaginations to run wild? Historians make educated guesses, but the real answers lie with the ages.
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