What was the cause of the Salem witch hunts?
The infamous Salem witch trials began during the spring of 1692, after a group of young girls in Salem Village, Massachusetts, claimed to be possessed by the devil and accused several local women of witchcraft.
Who started the accusations of the Salem witch trials?
Accusations. The trials were started after people had been accused of witchcraft, primarily by teenage girls such as Elizabeth Hubbard, 17, as well as some who were younger. Dorothy Good was four or five years old when she was accused of witchcraft.
What was the special evidence that was used in the Salem witch trials?
Spectral evidence was taken tautologically as evidence that a person was a witch and was based on the belief that the Devil cannot appear in the form of an innocent person. Demons were believed only to be able to assume the form of those who had signed pacts with the Devil.
What ended the witch trials in Salem?
As 1692 passed into 1693, the hysteria began to lose steam. The governor of the colony, upon hearing that his own wife was accused of witchcraft ordered an end to the trials. However, 20 people and 2 dogs were executed for the crime of witchcraft in Salem.
How many died in the Salem witch trials?
What were the effects of the Salem witch trials?
The haphazard fashion in which the Salem witch trials were conducted contributed to changes in U.S. court procedures, including rights to legal representation and cross-examination of accusers as well as the presumption that one is innocent until proven guilty.
Why is the Salem witch trials important?
More than 300 years later, the Salem witch trials testify to the way fear can ruin lives of innocent people and the importance of due process in protecting individuals against false accusations.
Who was the youngest person jailed for witchcraft?
Dorothy, written as “Dorcas” on the warrant for her arrest, received a brief hearing in which the accusers repeatedly complained of bites on their arms. She was sent to jail, becoming at age five the youngest person to be jailed during the Salem witch trials.
Was the Salem witch trials mass hysteria?
In the spring of 1692, girls in Salem, Massachusetts, accused several local women of witchcraft. The events that followed were marked by mass hysteria and religious extremism and ultimately led to trials, convictions, executions, and many more accusals.
Why were two dogs killed in the Salem witch trials?
However, hundreds of lives were damaged by the Salem witch hunts. A total of 24 innocent people died for their alleged participation in dark magic. Two dogs were even executed due to suspicions of their involvement in witchcraft.
How long did the persecution last during the Salem witch trials?
How long did the Salem witch trials last? The Salem witch trials took place over the course of approximately one year. The initial afflictions of Betty Parris and Abigail Williams began in January of 1692. By March, the first arrests were made.