: The Witch-Hunt in Early Modern Europe (): Brian P. Levack: Books. The Witch-Hunt in Early Modern Europe has ratings and 28 reviews. Katie said: This is a nice & sober recounting of a subject that’s often pretty sens. The Witch-Hunt in Modern Europe by Brian Levack proved to be an interesting as well as insightful look at the intriguing world of the European practice of.

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New illustrations vividly depict beliefs about witchcraft in early modern Europe.

Another component of this cumulative concept was the belief of the flight of witches. History is often a complicated and unruly beast, but Levack tries to tame the animal into broad strokes of time and place.

No trivia or quizzes yet. The book is surprisingly dry Levack’s work is a overview of the legal, political, economic, religious, and epidemic circumstances which he argues enabled the great witch-hunts of early modern Europe. The book is surprisingly dry and even boring, which seems nearly impossible, treating as it does the lurid topics of torture, naked dancing, and burning at the stake, which in this book are described in the most clinical, repetitious passages.

He focuses mainly on continental Europe but also details the differences between England and Europe.

Open Preview See a Problem? Brian Levack sorts wigch the proliferation of theories to provide a coherent introduction to the subject, as well as contributing to the scholarly debate. As trials of witches became more centralized and regulated they decreased in number and severity of punishment.


He regards this belief in diabolism as an important precondition for witch-hunts accelerating from the occasional burning of a disliked old woman to the wide-scale state-sponsored panics that consumed hundreds of victims. The first half of the book is taken up with the causes, intellectual, judicial, social, wifch religious, of the witch-craze. Emphasises the legal context of witchcraft prosecutions. He received his B. The hunts were not prisoner escapee type hunts but rather a hunt that involved the identification of individuals who were believed to be engaged in a secret activity.

A very thorough accounting of the creation of the witch-craze, the consequent witchtrials and the end tue this longsuffering period of our time.

The Witch-Hunt in Early Modern Europe – Brian P. Levack – Google Books

Apr 11, DoctorM rated it really liked it Shelves: I did learn a few things, but the book could have been a third as long and 10 times more levacj. Especially on the heals of Erickson’s riveting historical drama about Mary Tudor, this was pretty dull.

Why, after more than years of vigorous activity, did the trials eventually dwindle away? But these sections may be the ‘meat’ of the book as far as the scholars are concerned.

The Witch-Hunt in Early Modern Europe

He focuses mainly on continental Europe but also details the differences between England and Europe. All in all, one of the best treatments of the issue. Dr Malcolm Gaskill, Universityof Cambridge “Now, at last, with Levac, Levack’s careful, scholarly and critical survey, a thoroughly reliable introduction to the whole literature is available. Routledge; 3rd edition April 13, Language: Witch-hunting was the most frequent in countries where large minorities adhered lecack different religions.

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It clearly documents how the trend started, was supported and encouraged by the politics and religion of the times.

The new procedures bunt not in reality an improvement due to the fact that the standards of proof according wihch inquisitorial procedure were very demanding. Sometimes professional witch-hunters carried on the task, but judicial authorities performed most.

Why were more witches prosecuted in some countries than others? Levack appears to have read every significant work, both new and old and in most relevant languages, and has judiciously sifted out the information, pondered on it, and come up with balanced and sensible verdicts.

New illustrations vividly depict beliefs about witchcraft in early modern Europe. Showing of 16 reviews. Very sensible about the possibilities.

I am a huge nerd, so I find it super interesting, but I think that even if you’re tue strange like I am you will still find the book interesting. Aware that reactions to witchcraft varied from very rational enquires wtout torture or mass executions all te way up ton paranoid wholesale persecutions, but the latter were rare.

I’d recommend it to anyone interested in the subject as it is all set out quite well.