Essay on Witch Craze Dbq Ap Euro

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During the late fifteenth through the seventeenth centuries, thousands of individuals were persecuted as witches. It was thought that these individuals practiced black magic and performed evil deeds, the deeds of the devil. This all happened during a time of great change in Europe, during the time of the Protestant Reformation, the Catholic Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, and the consolidation of national governments. They were persecuted for a variety of reasons, but three major ones were religious reasons, social prejudices, and the economic greed of the people. Religious leaders such as Martin Luther and John Calvin influenced the ideas of their followers. Religion dominated the time period and it’s easy to see how many opinions …show more content…
These older women were the most often tried as witches. As can be seen from the Witchcraft Statistics Drawn from Contemporary Court Records, we can determine that witches were not very upper class type people. Most were married to laborers and farmers, which showed that they were poor, not wealthy. (Doc. 15) Also when looking at the males and females executed in Southwestern Germany, Switzerland and Selected Parts of France, it is visible that approximately 80% were women. Very few men were tried as witches. (Doc. 16) It should also be noted that almost all witches tried were older, around 60 years old, as shown in the chart Age of Suspected Witches. (Doc. 17) When taking all this into consideration, most witches were powerless, being both elderly and feminine. W. Fulhecke states that “The bodies of aged persons are impure…by the Devil whetted for such purpose to the…destruction of others.” (Doc. 13) Kramer and Sprenger, two Dominican monks, took it a step further stating that women are the target because they are weaker and are formed at the very core from sin. They are more ready to receive the influence of a disembodied spirit. The first woman was born imperfect, thus making women imperfect animals, leading them to always deceive and be evil. (Doc. 8) These both show obvious bias towards women, especially the elderly. They believed that women were naturally evil, thus were more likely to work with the