Download Agents of Witchcraft in Early Modern Italy and Denmark by L. Kallestrup PDF

By L. Kallestrup

This publication bargains a comparability of lay and inquisitorial witchcraft prosecutions. In many of the early glossy interval, witchcraft jurisdiction in Italy rested with the Roman Inquisition, while in Denmark simply the secular courts raised trials. Kallestrup explores the narratives of witchcraft as they have been laid ahead by way of humans all for the rigors.

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Extra info for Agents of Witchcraft in Early Modern Italy and Denmark

Example text

It was a belief when magicians renounced their Christian faith and instead entered a pact with the Devil. 81 All forms of Marking the limits of transgression 25 witchcraft practised included the abuse of sacraments and an explicit or implicit pact with the Devil. 83 The doctrine of the free will of man was considered to be a fundamental part of Christian teachings and its status was reinforced in the post-Tridentine Church. The doctrine of the free will was inextricably connected to the idea of sin and grace.

In cases involving divination and healing magic, the penalty had to be penance and abjuration, which would lead to subsequent absolution. In all probability the Church held complete jurisdiction over cases of benevolent magic, since secular authorities were unlikely to have any desire to prosecute these practices. In cases involving harmful magic, the course of action was less simple. According to Jyske Lov, in addition to breaking the laws of the Church a case of witchcraft (trolddom) also involved a secular proceeding similar to that of a murder trial in which a suspect did not confess to the crime.

By adopting a consistent stance in this conflict between the population and papal representatives, it signalled both the Pope’s will and his power. 57 Rather than expressing perceptions of witches and magicians commonly held within the Curia, the Summis desiderantes was a demonstration of the political will of papal power to eradicate the crime of witchcraft. In this respect the Malleus maleficarum fi expressed a controversial viewpoint, namely that witchcraft can occur without heresy. Heresy involved a false interpretation of the true Christian faith, and witchcraft did not necessarily derive from such a misinterpretation.

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