Gerhild Scholz Williams

in The Oxford Handbook of Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe and Colonial America

Published in print March 2013 | ISBN: 9780199578160
Published online May 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in History


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Written by learned physicians, jurists, and theologians, demonologies are compendious tracts that examine all aspects of the interactions alleged to take place between Satan and his demons (or fallen angels) and human beings, in particular women accused of being witches. Employed as aids in the identification and prosecution of witches, demonologies examine the history and theology as well as the legal and medical implications and consequences of such interactions. This article begins with a discussion of the association of demonology with witchcraft and the witch. It then considers the printed books, records, tracts, and sermons produced by demonologists across Europe, which explore the reality of demons as a scientific, religious, social, and theological phenomenon, usually with reference to the witch phenomenon.

Keywords: demonology; witchcraft; witches; demonologists

Article.  7113 words. 

Subjects: History ; Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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