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Descendant of Susanna Martin, who was hanged as a witch because she walked into Salem in the rain without getting her feet wet, Hoyt describes his book as a guide, a text, to help students find the way to the right questions, through an enormous mass of complex, contradictory, and emotionally charged material.” Confusion exists even in so basic a text as the injunction found in the King James translation of Exodus that Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Hoyt argues persuasively that this charge to the faithful, which has cost the lives of hundreds of thousands,” is an error in translating the word kashaph as witch rather than poisoner, as the author of Exodus intended.
Dealing further with the scriptural derivation for the bases of witchcraft, Hoyt shows that it was only with the New Testament’s personification of Satan that witchcraft was supplied with the personalized principle of evil” it required to prosper. He discusses the pantheon of hell, including the fiends Beelzebub, Mephistopheles, Asmodeus, Apollyon, and Belial. He concludes his historical analysis with a discussion of the witch queen Hecate, Circe the enchantress, and Medea.
Hoyt has identified seven schools of witchcraft, including the orthodox, the skeptics, the anthropological, the psychological, the pharmacological, the transcendental, and the occult. His perceptive classification of these schools greatly assists the student of witchcraft through the associations they combine and suggest.
Utilizing citations from witch trials, Hoyt is able to illustrate many of his arguments concerning the practice of witchcraft and beliefs concerning witches. Such records also provide stark evidence of the justice afforded those thought to be witches. Peter Stubbe, for example, was executed for lycanthropy by having his flesh ripped from his bones with red-hot pincers, his arms and legs broken, and finally his head strook from his body.”
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Charles Alva Hoyt has published two earlier books with Southern Illinois University Press: Minor British Novelists and Minor American Novelists.Review:
Hoyt manages a very comprehensive overview of the subject, as much or more than the average reader will want to know. He remains very objective on a quite emotional issue.” The Priest
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Book Description Southern Illinois University Press, 1981. Condition: Good. Item in good condition and has highlighting/writing on text. Used texts may not contain supplemental items such as CDs, info-trac etc. Seller Inventory # 00016254504
Book Description Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale IL, 1981. Soft Cover. Condition: Acceptable. No Jacket. Ex-Lib with all the Usual Suspects, as well as rather severe rubbing of both wraps, overall handling soil of wraps, multiple creases (one near 3") at wrapper corners, rounding of corners, chipping, blind tears at hinges (one over an inch), split across spine (not affecting integrity of binding);p 122 has lines in margin. In spite of all this, a sound, sturdy little workhorse of a book. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Used. Seller Inventory # 007696
Book Description Southern Illinois University Press, 1981. Paperback. Condition: Good. Seller Inventory # SONG0809310155
Book Description Southern Illinois University Press, Illinois, 1981. Softcover. First Edition; First Printing. Very Good in wraps. ; 9.0 X 5.9 X 0.5 inches; 180 pages; Original binding. All domestic orders shipped protected in a Box. Seller Inventory # 124488