Attitudes to witches (was Re: The Potterverse)

minnow at belfry.org.uk minnow at belfry.org.uk
Sun Feb 22 17:58:03 EST 2004


Jon wrote:

>--- minnow wrote:
>an awful lot about witches in amazing detail,
>confirming what I recalled (to my great relief).

I was fairly happy to see your post agreeing with
me!  :-)

>Yes, the modern idea of mass medieval witch burnings
>sponsored by the church is largely false (I blame
>neo-pagans myself - although that is a bit unfair -
>Margaret Murray perhaps).

Almost certainly.  Wasn't her work the source used for
a film called *Witchfinder General*?

Wrong date, wrong church in charge, wrong method of
execution, but hey, who cares about details like
that?  It sort of confirmed what everyone thought
they had always known.

>Monty Python in the Holy
>Grail was closer to the truth in making it a popular
>peasant belief, which it always was, continuing from
>pre-Christian times.

Whereas during the Renaissance it was believed by
scholars and lawyers and high-up churchmen as well.

Or if it wasn't, they said it was, because the ones
who said "Oh, tosh" were immediately accused of being
witches or at least sympathising with them, and lost
their jobs and might even end up being Questioned.

Nasty.  And at least echoed in *Witch Week*.  DWJ
has caught a bit of that feel, I think.

Minnow


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