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OF Dæmonologie


The description of Sorcerie an Witch-craft in speciall.


Proued by the Scripture, that such a thing can be: And the reasones refuted of all such as would call it but an imagination and Melancholicque humor.


NOW Since yee haue satisfied me nowe so fullie, concerning Magie or Necromancie I will pray you to do the like in Sorcerie or Witchcraft.

EPI. That fielde is likewise verie large: and althought in the mouthes; and pennes of manie, yet fewe knowes the trueth thereof, so

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wel as they beleeue themselues, as I shall so shortely as I can, make you (God willing) as easelie to perceiue.

PHI. But I pray you before ye goe further, let mee interrupt you here with a shorte digression: which is, that manie can scarcely beleeue that there is such a thing as Witch-craft. Whose reasons I wil shortely alleage vnto you, that ye may satisfie me as well in that, as ye haue done in the rest. For first, whereas the Scripture seemes to prooue Witchcraft to be, by diuerse examples, and speciallie by sundrie of the same, which ye haue alleaged, it is thought by some, that these places speakes of Magicians and Necromancers onlie, & not of Witches. As in special, these wise men of Pharaohs, that counterfeited Moyses miracles, were Magicians say they, & not Witches: As likewise that Pythonisse that Saul consulted with: And so was Simon Magus in the new Testament, as that very stile importes. Secondlie, where ye would oppone the dailie practicque, & confession of so manie, that is thought likewise to be but verie melancholicque imaginations of simple rauing creatures. Thirdly, if Witches had such power of Witching of folkes to death, (as they say they haue) there had bene none left aliue long sence in the world, but they: at the least, no good or godlie person of whatsoeuer estate, coulde haue escaped their deuilrie.

EPI. Your three reasons as I take, ar grounded the first of them negativè vpon the Scripture: The second affirmativè vpon Physicke: And the thirde

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vpon the certaine proofe of experience. As to your first, it is most true indeede, that all these wise men of Pharaoh were Magicians of art: As likewise it appeares wel that the Pythonisse, with whom Saul consulted, was of that same profession: & so was Simon Magus. But yee omitted to speake of the Lawe of God, wherein are all Magicians, Diuines, Enchanters, Sorcerers, Witches, & whatsouer of that kinde that consultes with the Deuill, plainelie prohibited, and alike threatned against. And besides that, she who had the Spirite of Python, in the Actes[1], whose Spirite was put to silence by the Apostle, coulde be no other thing but a verie Sorcerer or Witch. if ye admit the vulgare distinction, to be in a maner true, whereof I spake in the beginning of our conference. For that spirit whereby she conquested such gaine to her Master, was not at her raising or commanding, as she pleased to appoynt, but spake by her toung, aswel publicklie, as priuatelie: Whereby she seemed to draw nearer to the sort of Demoniakes or possessed, if that conjunction betwixt them, had not bene of her owne consent: as it appeared by her, not being tormented therewith: And by her conquesting of such gaine to her masters (as I haue alreadie said.) As to your second reason grounded vpon Physick, in attributing their confessiones or apprehensiones, to a naturall melancholicque humour: Anie that pleases Physicallie to consider vpon the naturall humour of melancholie, according to all the Physicians, that euer writ thereupon, they sall finde that that will be

[1. Act. 16.]

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ouer short a cloak to couer their knauery with: For as the humor of Melancholic in the selfe is blacke, heauie and terrene, so are the symptomes thereof, in any persones; that are subject therevnto, leannes, palenes, desire of solitude: and if they come to the highest degree therof, mere folie and Manie: where as by the contrarie, a great nomber of them that euer haue bene convict or confessors of Witchcraft, as may be presently scene by manie that haue at this time confessed: they are by the contrarie, I say, some of them rich and worldly-wise, some of them fatte or corpulent in their bodies, and most part of them altogether giuen ouer to the pleasures of the flesh, continual haunting of companie, and all kind of merrines, both lawfull and vnlawfull, which are thinges directly contrary to the symptomes of Melancholie, whereof I spake, and further experience daylie proues how loath they are to confesse without torture, which witnesseth their guiltines, where by the contrary, the Melancholicques neuer spares to bewray themselues, by their continuall discourses, feeding therby their humor in that which they thinke no crime. As to your third reason, it scarselie merites an answere. For if the deuill their master were not bridled, as the scriptures teacheth vs, suppose there were no men nor women to be his instrumentes, he could finde waies inough without anie helpe of others to wrack al mankinde: wherevnto he employes his whole study, and goeth about like a roaring Lyon (as PETER saith)[1] to that effect, but the limites of his power were set down before the

[1. 1. Pet. 5]

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foundations of the world were laid, which he hath not power in the least jote to transgresse. But beside all this, there is ouer greate a certainty to proue that they are, by the daily experience of the harmes that they do, both to men, and whatsoeuer thing men possesses, whome God will permit them to be the instrumentes, so to trouble or visite, as in my discourse of that arte, yee shall heare clearelie proued.


The Etymologie and signification of that word of Sorcerie. The first entresse and prentishippe of them that giues themselues to that craft.


Come on then I pray you, and returne where ye left.

EPI. This word of Sorcerie is a Latine worde, which is taken from casting of the lot, & therefore he that vseth it, is called Sortiarius à sorte. As to the word of Witchcraft, it is nothing but a proper name giuen in our language. The cause wherefore they were called sortiarij, proceeded of their practicques seeming to come of lot or chance: Such as the turning of the riddle: the knowing of the forme of prayers, or such like tokens: If a person diseased woulde liue or dye. And in generall, that name was giuen them for vsing of such charmes, and freites, as that Crafte teacheth them. Manie poynts of their craft and practicques are common

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betuixt the Magicians and them: for they serue both one Master, althought in diuerse fashions. And as I deuided the Necromancers, into two sorts, learned and vnlearned; so must I denie them in other two, riche and of better accompt, poore and of basser degree. These two degrees now of persones, that practises this craft, answers to the passions in them, which (I told you before) the Deuil vsed as meanes to intyse them to his seruice, for such of them as are in great miserie and pouertie, he allures to follow him, by promising vnto them greate riches, and worldlie commoditie. Such as though riche, yet burnes in a desperat desire of reuenge, hee allures them by promises, to get their turne satisfied to their hartes contentment. It is to be noted nowe, that that olde and craftie enemie of ours, assailes none, though touched with any of these two extremities, except he first finde an entresse reddy for him, either by the great ignorance of the person he deales with, ioyned with an euill life, or else by their carelesnes and contempt of God: And finding them in an vtter despair, for one of these two former causes that I haue spoken of; he prepares the way by feeding them craftely in their humour, and filling them further and further with despaire, while he finde the time proper to discouer himself vnto them. At which time, either vpon their walking solitarie in the fieldes, or else lying pansing in their bed; but alwaies without the company of any other, he either by a voyce, or in likenesse of a man inquires of them, what troubles them: and promi-

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seth them, a suddaine and certaine waie of remedie, vpon condition on the other parte, that they follow his advise; and do such thinges as he wil require of them: Their mindes being prepared before hand, as I haue alreadie spoken, they easelie agreed vnto that demande of his: And syne settes an other tryist, where they may meete againe. At which time, before he proceede any further with them, he first perswades them to addict themselues to his seruice: which being easely obteined, he then discouers what he is vnto them: makes them to renunce their God and Baptisme directlie, and giues them his marke vpon some secreit place of their bodie, which remaines soare vnhealed, while his next meeting with them, and thereafter euer insensible, how soeuer it be nipped or pricked by any, as is dailie proued, to giue them a proofe thereby, that as in that doing, hee could hurte and heale them; so all their ill and well doing thereafter, must depende vpon him. And besides that, the intollerable dolour that they feele in that place, where he hath marked them, serues to waken them, and not to let them rest, while their next meeting againe: fearing least otherwaies they might either forget him, being as new Prentises, and not well inough founded yet, in that fiendlie follie: or else remembring of that horrible promise they made him, at their last meeting, they might skunner at the same, and preasse to call it back. At their thirde meeting, he makes a shew to be carefull, to performe his promises, either by teaching them waies howe to get

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themselues reuenged, if they be of that sort: Or els by teaching them lessons, how by moste vilde and vnlawfull meanes, they may obtaine gaine, and worldlie commoditie, if they be of the other sorte.


The Witches actiones diuided in two partes. The actiones proper to their owne persones. Their actiones toward others. The forme of their conuentiones, and adoring of their Master.


YE haue said now inough of their initiating in that ordour. It restes then that ye discourse vpon their practises, fra they be passed Prentises: for I would faine heare what is possible to them to performe in verie deede. Although they serue a common Master with the Necromancers, (as I haue before saide) yet serue they him in an other forme. For as the meanes are diuerse, which allures them to these vnlawfull artes of seruing of the Deuill; so by diuerse waies vse they their practises, answering to these meanes, which first the Deuill, vsed as instrumentes in them; though al tending to one end: To wit. the enlargeing of Sathans tyrannie, and crossing of the propagation of the Kingdome of CHRIST, so farre as lyeth in the possibilitie, either of the one or other sorte, or of the Deuill their Master. For where the Magicians, as allured by curiositie, in the most parte of their practises, seekes principallie the satisfying of the same, and to winne to themselues a popular honoure and estimation:

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These Witches on the other parte, being intised ether for the desire of reuenge, or of worldly riches, their whole practises are either to hurte men and their gudes, or what they possesse, for satisfying of their cruell mindes in the former, or else by the wracke in quhatsoeuer sorte, of anie whome God will permitte them to haue power off, to satisfie their greedie desire in the last poynt.

EPI. In two partes their actiones may be diuided; the actiones of their owne persones, and the actiones proceeding from them towardes anie other. And this diuision being wel vnderstood, will easilie resolue you, what is possible to them to doe. For although all that they confesse is no lie vpon their parte, yet doubtlesly in my opinion, a part of it is not indeede, according as they take it to be: And in this I meane by the actiones of their owne persones. For as I said before, speaking of Magie that the Deuill illudes the senses of these schollers of his, in manie thinges, so saye I the like of these Witches.

PHI. Then I pray you, first to speake of that part of their owne persons, and syne ye may come next to their actiones towardes; others.

EPI. To the effect that they may performe such seruices of their false Master, as he employes them in, the deuill as Gods Ape, counterfeites in his seruantes this seruice & forme of adoration, that God prescribed and made his seruantes to practise. For as the seruants of G O D, publicklie vses to conveene for seruing of him, so makes he them in great

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numbers to conveene (though publickly they dare not) for his seruice. As none conueenes to the adoration and worshipping of God, except they be marked with his seale, the Sacrament of Baptisme: So none serues Sathan, and conueenes to the adoring of him, that are not marked with that marke, wherof I alredy spake. As the Minister sent by God, teacheth plainely at the time of their publick conuentions, how to serue him in spirit & truth: so that vncleane spirite, in his owne person teacheth his Disciples, at the time of their conueening, how to worke all kinde of mischiefe: And craues compt of all their horrible and detestable proceedinges passed, for aduancement of his seruice. Yea, that he may the more viuelie counterfeit and scorne God, he oft times makes his slaues to conveene in these verrie places, which are destinat and ordeined for the conveening of the servantes of God (I meane by Churches) But this farre, which I haue yet said, I not onelie take it to be true in their opiniones, but euen so to be indeede. For the forme that he vsed in counterfeiting God amongst the Gentiles, makes me so to thinke: As God spake by his Oracles, spake he not so by his? As G O D had aswell bloudie Sacrifices, as others without bloud, had not he the like? As God had Churches sanctified to his seruice, with Altars, Priests, Sacrifices, Ceremonies and Prayers; had he not the like polluted to his seruice? As God gaue responses by Vrim and Thummim, gaue he not his responses by the intralls of beastes, by the singing of Fowles, and by their

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actiones in the aire? As God by visiones, dreames, and extases reueiled what was to come, and what was his will vnto his scruantes; vsed he not the like meanes to forwarne his slaues of things to come? Yea, euen as God loued cleannes, hated vice, and impuritie, & appoynted punishmentes therefore: vsed he not the like (though falselie I grant, and but in eschewing the lesse inconuenient, to draw them upon a greater) yet dissimuled he not I say, so farre as to appoynt his Priestes to keepe their bodies cleane and vndefiled, before their asking responses of him? And feyned he not God to be a protectour of euerie vertue, and a iust reuenger of the contrarie? This reason then moues me. that as he is that same Deuill; and as craftie nowe as he was then; so wil hee not spare a pertelie in these actiones that I haue spoken of, concerning the witches persones: But further, Witches oft times confesses not only his conueening in the Church with them, but his occupying of the Pulpit: Yea, their forme of adoration, to be the kissing of his hinder partes. Which though it seeme ridiculous, yet may it likewise be true, seeing we reade that in Calicute, he appearing in forme of a Goate-bucke, hath publicklie that vn-honest homage done vnto him, by euerie one of the people: So ambitious is he, and greedie of honour (which procured his fall) that he will euen imitate God in that parte, where it is said, that Moyses could see but the hinder partes of God, for the brightnesse of his glorie:[1] And yet that speache is spoken but {Greek anðrwpwpaðeian}

[1. Exo. 33]

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What are the waies possible, wherby the witches may transport themselues to places far distant. And what ar impossible &mere illusiones of Sathan. And the reasons therof.


Bvt by what way say they or think ye it possible that they can com to these vnlawful co~uentio~s?

EPI. There is the thing which I esteeme their senses to be deluded in, and though they lye not in confessing of it, because they thinke it to be true, yet not to be so in substance or effect: for they saie, that by diuerse meanes they may conueene, either to the adoring of their Master, or to the putting in practise any seruice of his, committed vnto their charge: one way is natural, which is natural riding, going or sayling, at what houre their Master comes and aduertises them. And this way may be easelie beleued: an other way is some-what more strange: and yet is it possible to be true: which is by being carryed by the force of the Spirite which is their conducter, either aboue the earth or aboue the Sea swiftlie, to the place where they are to meet: which I am perswaded to be likewaies possible, in respect that as Habakkuk was carryed by the Angell in that forme, to the denne where Daniell laie;[1] so thinke I, the Deuill will be reddie to imitate God, as well in that as in other thinges: which is much more possible to him to doe, being a Spirite, then to a mighty winde, being but a naturall meteore, to transporte from one place to an other a solide bodie, as is commonlie and dailie seene in practise: But in this vio-

[1. Apocrypha of Bell and the Dragon.]

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lent forme they cannot be carryed, but a shorte boundes, agreeing with the space that they may reteine their breath: for if it were longer, their breath could not remaine vnextinguished, their bodie being carryed in such a violent & forceable maner, as be example: If one fall off an small height, his life is but in perrell, according to the harde or soft lighting: But if one fall from an high and stay rocke, his breath wilbe forceablie banished from the bodie, before he can win to the earth, as is oft seen by experience. And in this transporting they say themselues, that they are inuisible to anie other, except amongst themselues; which may also be possible in my opinion. For if the deuil may forme what kinde of impressiones he pleases in the aire, as I haue said before, speaking of Magie, why may he not far easilier thicken & obscure so the air, that is next about them by contracting it strait together, that the beames of any other mans eyes, cannot pearce thorow the same, to see them? But the third way of their comming to their conuentions, is, that where in I think them deluded: for some of them sayeth, that being transformed in the likenesse of a little beast or foule, they will come and pearce through whatsoeuer house or Church, though all ordinarie passages be closed, by whatsoeuer open, the aire may enter in at. And some sayeth, that their bodies lying stil as in an extasy, their spirits wil be rauished out of their bodies, & caried to such places. And for verefying therof, wil giue euident tokens, aswel by witnesses that haue seene their body lying senseles

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in the meane time, as by naming persones, whomwith they mette, and giuing tokens quhat purpose was amongst them, whome otherwaies they could not haue knowen: for this forme of journeing, they affirme to vse most, when they are transported from one Countrie to another.

PHI. Surelie I long to heare your owne opinion of this: For they are like old wiues trattles about the fire. The reasons that moues me to thinke that these are meere illusiones, ar these. First for them that are transformed in likenes of beastes or foules, can enter through so narrow passages, although I may easelie beleeue that the Deuill coulde by his woorkemanshippe vpon the aire, make them appeare to be in such formes, either to themselues or to others: Yet how he can contract a solide bodie within so little roome, I thinke it is directlie contrarie to it selfe, for to be made so little, and yet not diminished: To be so straitlie drawen together, and yet feele no paine; I thinke it is so contrarie to the qualitie of a naturall bodie, and so like to the little transubstantiat god in the Papistes Masse, that I can neuer beleeue it. So to haue a quantitie, is so proper to a solide bodie, that as all Philosophers concludes, it cannot be any more without one, then a spirite can haue one. For when PETER came out of the prison, and the doores all locked:[1] It was not by any contracting of his bodie in so little roome: but by the giuing place of the dore, though vn-espyed by the Gaylors. And yet is there no comparison, when this is done, betuixt the power of God, and

[1. Act. 12.]

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of the Deuill. As to their forme of extasie and spirituall transporting, it is certaine the soules going out of the bodie, is the onely difinition of naturall death: and who are once dead, God forbid wee should thinke that it should lie in the power of all the Deuils in Hell, to restore them to their life againe: Although he can put his owne spirite in a dead bodie, which the Necromancers commonlie practise, as yee haue harde. For that is the office properly belonging to God; and besides that, the soule once parting from the bodie, cannot wander anie longer in the worlde, but to the owne resting place must it goe immediatlie, abiding the conjunction of the bodie againe, at the latter daie. And what CHRIST or the Prophets did miraculouslie in this case, it cannot in no Christian mans opinion be maid common with the Deuill. As for anie tokens that they giue for proouing of this, it is verie possible to the Deuils craft, to perswade them to these meanes. For he being a spirite, may hee: not so rauishe their thoughtes, and dull their sences, that their bodie lying as dead, hee may object to their spirites as it were in a dreame, & (as the Poets write of Morpheus) represente such formes of persones, of places, and other circumstances, as he pleases to illude them with? Yea, that he maie deceiue them with the greater efficacie, may hee not at that same instant, by fellow angelles of his, illude such other persones so in that same fashion, whome with he makes them to beleeue that they mette; that all their reportes and tokens, though

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seuerallie examined, may euerie one agree with an other. And that whatsoeuer actiones, either in hurting men or beasts: or whatsoeuer other thing that they falselie imagine, at that time to haue done, may by himselfe or his marrowes, at that same time be done indeede; so as if they would giue for a token of their being rauished at the death of such a person within so shorte space thereafter, whom they beleeue to haue poysoned, or witched at that instante, might hee not at that same houre, haue smitten that same person by the permission of G O D, to the farther deceiuing of them, and to mooue others to beleeue them? And this is surelie the likeliest way, and most according to reason, which my judgement can finde out in this, and whatsoeuer vther vnnaturall poyntes of their confession. And by these meanes shall we saill surelie, betuixt Charybdis and Scylla, in eschewing the not beleeuing of them altogether on the one part, least that drawe vs to the errour that there is no Witches: and on the other parte in beleeuing of it, make vs to eschew the falling into innumerable absurdities, both monstruouslie against all Theologie diuine, and Philosophie humaine.


Witches actiones towardes others. Why there are more women of that craft nor men? What thinges are possible to them to effectuate by the power of their master. The reasons thereof. What is the surest remedie of the harmes done by them.

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Forsooth your opinion in this, seemes to carrie most reason with it, and sence yee haue ended, then the actions belonging properly to their owne persones: say forwarde now to their actiones vsed towardes others.

EPI. In their actiones vsed towardes others, three thinges ought to be considered: First the maner of their consulting thereupon: Next their part as instrumentes: And last their masters parte, who puts the same in execution. As to their consultationes thereupon, they vse them oftest in the Churches, where they conveene for adoring: at what time their master enquiring at them what they would be at: euerie one of them propones vnto him, what wicked turne they would haue done, either for obteining of riches, or for reuenging them vpon anie whome they haue malice at: who granting their demande, as no doubt willinglie he wil, since it is to doe euill, he teacheth them the means, wherby they may do the same. As for little trifling turnes that women haue ado with, he causeth them to ioynt dead corpses, & to make powders thereof, mixing such other thinges there amongst, as he giues vnto them.

PHI. But before yee goe further, permit mee I pray you to interrupt you one worde, which yee haue put mee in memorie of, by speaking of Women. What can be the cause that there are twentie women giuen to that craft, where ther is one man?

EPI. The reason is easie, for as that sexe

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is frailer then man is, so is it easier to be intrapped in these grosse snares of the Deuill, as was ouer well proued to be true, by the Serpents deceiuing of Eua at the beginning, which makes him the homelier with that sexe sensine.

PHI. Returne now where ye left.

EPI. To some others at these times hee teacheth, how to make Pictures of waxe or clay: That by the rosting thereof, the persones; that they beare the name of, may be continuallie melted or dryed awaie by continuall sicknesse. To some hee giues such stones or poulders, as will helpe to cure or cast on diseases: And to some he teacheth kindes of vncouthe poysons, which Mediciners vnderstandes not (for he is farre cunningner then man in the knowledge of all the occult proprieties of nature) not that anie of these meanes which hee teacheth them (except the poysons which are composed of thinges naturall) can of them selues helpe any thing to these turnes, that they are employed in, but onelie being Gods Ape, as well in that, as in all other thinges. Even as God by his Sacramentes which are earthlie of themselues workes a heavenlie effect, though no waies by any cooperation in them: And as CHRIST by clay & spettle wrought together, opened the eies of the blynd man,[1] suppose there was no vertue in that which he outwardlie applyed, so the Deuill will haue his out-warde meanes to be shewes as it were of his doing, which hath no part of cooperation in his turnes with him, how farre that euer the ignorantes be abused

[1. John. 9.]

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in the contrarie. And as to the effectes of these two former partes, to wit, the consultationes and the outward meanes, they are so wounderfull as I dare not allege anie of them, without ioyning a sufficient reason of the possibilitie thereof. For leauing all the small trifles among wiues, and to speake of the principall poyntes of their craft. For the common trifles thereof, they can do without conuerting well inough by themselues: These principall poyntes I say are these: They can make men or women to loue or hate other, which may be verie possible to the Deuil to effectuat, seing he being a subtile spirite, knowes well inough how to perswade the corrupted affection of them whom God will permit him so to deale with: They can lay the siknesse of one vpon an other, which likewise is verie possible vnto him: For since by Gods permission, he layed siknesse vpon IOB, why may he not farre easilier lay it vpon any other: For as an old practisian, he knowes well inough what humor domines most in anie of vs, and as a spirite hee can subtillie walken vp the same, making it peccant, or to abounde, as he thinkes meete for troubling of vs, when God will so permit him. And for the taking off of it, no doubt he will be glad to reliue such of present paine, as he may thinke by these meanes to perswade to bee catched in his euerlasting snares and fetters. They can be-witch and take the life of men or women, by rosting of the Pictures, as I spake of before, which likewise is verie possible to their Master to performe, for although, (as I saide

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before) that instrumente of waxe haue no vertue in that turne doing, yet may hee not verie well euen by that same measure that his conjured slaues meltes that waxe at the fire, may he not I say at these same times, subtilie as a spirite so weaken and scatter the spirites of life of the patient, as may make him on th'one part, for faintnesse to sweate out the humour of his bodie: And on the other parte, for the not concurrence of these spirites, which causes his digestion, so debilitat his stomak, that his humour radicall continually, sweating out on the one parte, and no new good suck being put in the place thereof, for lack of digestion on the other, hee at last shall vanish awaie, euen as his picture will doe at the fire. And that knauish and cunning woorkeman, by troubling him onely at some times, makes a proportion so neare betuixt the woorking of the one and the other, that both shall ende as it were at one time. They can rayse stormes and tempestes in the aire, either vpon Sea or land, though not vniuersally, but in such a particular place and prescribed boundes, as God will permitte them so to trouble: Which likewise is verie easie to be discerned from anie other naturall tempestes that are meteores, in respect of the suddaine and violent raising thereof, together with the short induring of the same. And this is likewise verie possible to their master to do, he hauing such affinitie with the aire as being a spirite, and hauing such power of the forming and moouing thereof, as ye haue heard me alreadie declare: For

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in the Scripture, that stile of the Prince of the aire is giuen vnto him[1]. They can make folkes to becom phrenticque or Maniacque, which likewise is very possible to their master to do, sence they are but naturall sicknesses: and so he may lay on these kindes, aswell as anie others. They can make spirites either to follow and trouble persones, or haunt certaine houses. and affraie oftentimes the inhabitantes: as hath bene knowen to be done by our Witches at this time. And likewise they can make some to be possessed with spirites, & so to becom verie Dæmoniacques: and this last sorte is verie possible likewise to the Deuill their Master to do, since he may easilie send his owne angells to trouble in what forme he pleases, any whom God wil permit him so to vse.

PHI. But will God permit these wicked instrumentes by the power of the Deuill their master, to trouble by anie of these meanes, anie that beleeues in him?

EPI. No doubt, for there are three kinde of folkes whom God will permit so to be tempted or troubled; the wicked for their horrible sinnes, to punish them in the like measure; The godlie that are sleeping in anie great sinnes or infirmities and weakenesse in faith, to waken them vp the faster by such an vncouth forme: and euen some of the best, that their patience may bee tryed before the world, as IOBs was. For why may not God vse anie kinde of extraordinarie punishment, when it pleases him; as well as the ordinarie roddes of sicknesse or other aduersities.

[1. Ephes. 2]

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PHI. Who then may he free from these Deuilish practises?

EPI. No man ought to presume so far as to promise anie impunitie to himselfe: for God hath before all beginninges preordinated aswell the particular sortes of Plagues as of benefites for euerie man, which in the owne time he ordaines them to be visited with, & yet ought we not to be the more affrayde for that, of any thing that the Deuill and his wicked instrumentes can do against vs.. For we dailie fight against the Deuill in a hundreth other waies: And therefore as a valiant Captaine, affraies no more being at the combat, nor stayes from his purpose for the rummishing shot of a Cannon, nor the small clack of a Pistoler: suppose he be not certaine what may light vpon him; Euen so ought we boldlie to goe forwarde in fighting against the Deuill without anie greater terrour, for these his rarest weapons, nor for the ordinarie whereof wee haue daily the proofe.

PHI. Is it not lawfull then by the helpe of some other Witche to cure the disease that is casten on by that craft?

EPI. No waies lawfull: For I gaue you the reason thereof in that axiome of Theologie, which was the last wordes I spake of Magie

PHI. How then may these diseases he lawfullie cured?

EPI. Onelie by earnest prayer to G O D, by amendement of their liues, and by sharp persewing euerie one, according to his calling of these instru-

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mentes of Sathan, whose punishment to the death will be a salutarie sacrifice for the patient. And this is not onely the lawfull way, but likewise the most sure: For by the Deuils meanes, can neuer the Deuill be casten out,[1] as Christ sayeth. And when such a cure is vsed, it may wel serue for a shorte time, but at the Last, it will doubtleslie tend to the vtter perdition of the patient, both in bodie and soule.


What sorte of folkes are least or most subiect to receiue harme by Witchcraft. What power they haue to harme the Magistrate, and vpon what respectes they haue any power in prison: And to what end may or will the Deuill appeare to them therein. Vpon what respectes the Deuill appeires in sundry shapes to sundry of them at any time.


BVt who dare take vpon him to punish them, if no man can be sure to be free from their vnnaturall inuasiones?

EPI. We ought not the more of that restraine from vertue, that the way wherby we climbe thereunto be straight and perrilous. But besides that, as there is no kinde of persones so subject to receiue harme of them, as these that are of infirme and weake faith (which is the best buckler against such inuasiones:) so haue they so smal power ouer none) as ouer such as zealouslie and earnestlie persewes

[1. Math. 3]

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them, without sparing for anie worldlie respect.

PHI. Then they are like the Pest, which smites these sickarest, that flies it farthest, and apprehends deepliest the perrell thereof.

EPI. It is euen so with them: For neither is it able to them to vse anie false cure vpon a patient, except the patient first beleeue in their power, and so hazard the tinsell of his owne soule, nor yet can they haue lesse power to hurte anie, nor such as contemnes most their doinges, so being it comes of faith, and not of anie vaine arrogancie in themselues.

PHI. But what is their power against the Magistrate?

EPI. Lesse or greater, according as he deales with them. For if he be slouthfull towardes them, God is verie able to make them instrumentes to waken & punish his slouth. But if he be the contrarie, he according to the iust law of God, and allowable law of all Nationes, will be diligent in examining and punishing of them: G O D will not permit their master to trouble or hinder so good a woorke.

PHI. But fra they be once in handes and firmance, haue they anie further power in their craft?

EPI. That is according to the forme of their detention. If they be but apprehended and deteined by anie priuate person, vpon other priuate respectes, their power no doubt either in escaping, or in doing hurte, is no lesse nor euer it was be-

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fore. But if on the other parte, their apprehending and detention be by the lawfull Magistrate, vpon the iust respectes of their guiltinesse in that craft, their power is then no greater then before that euer they medled with their master. For where God beginnes iustlie to strike by his lawfull Lieutennentes, it is not in the Deuilles power to defraude or bereaue him of the office, or effect of his powerfull and reuenging Scepter.

PHI. But will neuer their master come to visite them, fra they be once apprehended and put in firmance?

EPI. That is according to the estaite that these miserable wretches are in: For if they be obstinate in still denying, he will not spare, when he findes time to speake with them, either if he finde them in anie comfort, to fill them more and more with the vaine hope of some maner of reliefe: or else if hee finde them in a deepe dispaire, by all meanes to augment the same, and to perswade them by some extraordinarie meanes to put themselues downe, which verie commonlie they doe. But if they be penitent and confesse, God will not permit him to trouble them anie more with his presence and alurementes.

PHI It is not good vsing his counsell I see then. But I woulde earnestlie know when he appeares to them in Prison, what formes vses he then to take?

EPI. Diuers formes, euen as he vses to do at other times vnto them. For as I told you, speking of Magie,

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lie appeares to that kinde of craftes-men ordinarily in an forme, according as they agree vpon it amongst themselues: Or if they be but prentises, according to the qualitie of their circles or conjurationes: Yet to these capped creatures, he appeares as he pleases, and as he findes meetest for their humors. For euen at their publick conuentiones, he appeares to diuers of them in diuers formes, as we haue found by the difference of their confessiones in that point: For he deluding them with vaine impressiones in the aire, makes himselfe to seeme more terrible to the grosser sorte, that they maie thereby be moued to feare and reuerence him the more: And les monstrous and vncouthlike againe to the craftier sorte, least otherwaies they might sturre and skunner at his vglinesse.

PHI. How can he then be felt. as they confesse they haue done him, if his bodie be but of aire?

EPI. I heare little of that amongst their confessiones, yet may he make himselfe palpable, either by assuming any dead bodie, and vsing the ministrie thereof, or else by deluding as wel their sence of feeling as seeing; which is not impossible to him to doe, since all our senses, as we are so weake, and euen by ordinarie sicknesses will be often times deluded.

PHI. But I would speere one worde further yet, concerning his appearing to them in prison, which is this. May any other that chances to be present at that time in the prison, see him as well as they.

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EPI. Some-times they will, and some-times not, as it pleases God.


Two formes of the deuils visible conuersing in the earth, with the reasones wherefore the one of them was communest in the time of Papistrie: And the other sensine. Those that denies the power of the Deuill, denies the power of God, and are guiltie of the errour of the Sadduces.


HAth the Deuill then power to appeare to any other, except to such as are his sworne disciples: especially since al Oracles, & such like kinds of illusiones were taken awaie and abolished by the cumming Of CHRIST?

EPI. Although it be true indeede, that the brightnesse of the Gospell at his cumming, scaled the cloudes of all these grosse errors in the Gentilisme: yet that these abusing spirites, ceases not sensine at sometimes to appeare, dailie experience teaches vs. Indeede this difference is to be marked betwixt the formes of Sathans conuersing visiblie in the world. For of two different formes thereof, the one of them by the spreading of the Euangell, and conquest of the white horse, in the sixt Chapter of the Reuelation, is much hindred and become rarer there through. This his appearing to any Christians, troubling of them outwardly, or possessing of them constraynedly. The other of them is be-

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become communer and more vsed sensine, I meane by their vnlawfull artes, whereupon our whole purpose hath bene. This we finde by experience in this Ile to be true. For as we know, moe Ghostes and spirites were seene, nor tongue can tell, in the time of blinde Papistrie in these Countries, where now by the contrarie, a man shall scarcely all his time here once of such things. And yet were these vnlawfull artes farre rarer at that time: and neuer were so much harde of, nor so rife as they are now.

PHI. What should be the cause of that?

EPI. The diuerse nature of our sinnes procures at the Iustice of God, diuerse sortes of punishments answering thereunto. And therefore as in the time of Papistrie, our fathers erring grosselie, & through ignorance, that mist of errours ouershaddowed the Deuill to walke the more familiarlie amongst them: And as it were by barnelie and affraying terroures, to mocke and accuse their barnelie erroures. By the contrarie, we now being sounde of Religion, and in our life rebelling to our profession, God iustlie by that sinne of rebellion, as Samuel calleth it, accuseth our life so wilfullie fighting against our profession.

PHI. Since yee are entred now to speake of the appearing of spirites: I would be glad to heare your opinion in that matter. For manie denies that anie such spirites can appeare in these daies as I haue said.

EPI. Doubtleslie who denyeth the power of

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the Deuill, woulde likewise denie the power of God, if they could for shame. For since the Deuill is the verie contrarie opposite to God, there can be no better way to know God, then by the contrarie; as by the ones power (though a creature) to admire the power of the great Creator: by the falshood of the one to considder the trueth of the other, by the injustice of the one, to considder the Iustice of the other: And by the cruelty of the one, to considder the mercifulnesse of the other: And so foorth in all the rest of the essence of God, and qualities of the Deuill. But I feare indeede, there be ouer many Sadduces in this worlde, that denies all kindes of spirites: For convicting of whose errour, there is cause inough if there were no more, that God should permit at sometimes spirits visiblie to kyith.

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