List of people executed for witchcraft
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This is a list of people executed for witchcraft, many of whom were executed during organised witch-hunts, particularly from the 15th–18th centuries. Large numbers of people were prosecuted for witchcraft in Europe between 1560 and 1630. Until around 1420, witchcraft-related prosecutions in Europe centred on maleficium, the concept of using supernatural powers specifically to harm others. Cases came about from accusations of the use of ritual magic to damage rivals. Up until the early 15th century, there was little association of witchcraft with Satan. From that time organised witch-hunts increased, as did individual accusations of sorcery. The nature of the charges brought changed as more cases were linked to diabolism. Throughout the century, a number of treatises were published that helped to establish a stereotype of the witch, particularly the Satanic connection. During the 16th century, witchcraft prosecutions stabilised and even declined in some areas. Witch-hunts increased again in the 17th century. The witch trials in Early Modern Europe included the Basque witch trials in Spain, the Fulda witch trials in Germany, the North Berwick witch trials in Scotland and the Torsåker witch trials in Sweden.
Witch-hunts also took place during the 17th century in the American colonies. These were particularly common in the colonies of Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Haven. The myth of the witch had a strong cultural presence in 17th century New England and, as in Europe, witchcraft was strongly associated with devil-worship. About eighty people were accused of practicing witchcraft in a witch-hunt that lasted throughout New England from 1647 to 1663. Thirteen women and two men were executed. The Salem witch trials followed in 1692–93, culminating in the executions of 20 people. 5 others died in jail.
It has been estimated that tens of thousands of people were executed for witchcraft in Europe and the American colonies over several hundred years. Although it is not possible to ascertain the exact number, modern scholars estimate around 40,000–50,000.[A] Common methods of execution for convicted witches were hanging, drowning and burning. Burning was often favoured, particularly in Europe, as it was considered a more painful way to die. Prosecutors in the American colonies generally preferred hanging in cases of witchcraft.
List of people executed for witchcraft
|Johann Albrecht Adelgrief||d. 1636||German||Executed after claiming to be a prophet.|
|Marigje Arriens||c. 1520–1591||Dutch||Burned to death for sorcery.|
|Goodwife Bassett||d. 1651||Colonial American colonist||Hanged at Fairfield, Connecticut|
|Allison Balfour||d. 1594||Scottish||Executed in Kirkwall|
|Agnes Bernauer||c. 1410–1435||German||Convicted of witchcraft and thrown in the Danube to drown, following accusations by her father-in-law Ernest, Duke of Bavaria.|
|Merga Bien||1560s–1603||German||Convicted as part of the Fulda witch trials and burned to death.|
|Lasses Birgitta||d. 1550||Swedish||The first woman executed for witchcraft in Sweden; beheaded.|
|Bridget Bishop||c. 1632–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||The first person to be tried and executed during the Salem witch trials.|
|Viola Cantini||1668-1693||Italian||Burned to death in May 10, 1693 after caught performing vampirism on her dying son and cursing members of the village.|
|Sidonia von Borcke||1548–1620||Pomeranian||Confessed to murder and witchcraft under torture; beheaded, corpse burned.|
|Janet Boyman||d. 1572||Scottish||Executed in 1572 for witchcraft|
|George Burroughs||c. 1650–1692||Colonial American colonist||Congregational pastor, executed as part of the Salem witch trials.|
|Martha Carrier||d. 19 Aug 1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials; her children had claimed she was a witch.|
|Anne de Chantraine||1603–1622||French||Strangled and then burned at the stake.|
|Michée Chauderon||d. 1652||Swiss||Confessed under torture to summoning demons and was the last person executed for sorcery in Geneva.|
|Nyzette Cheveron||d. 1605||Belgian||Confessed to being a witch; was strangled and burned to death.|
|Elizabeth Clarke||c. 1565–1645||English||The first woman persecuted by the Witchfinder General, Matthew Hopkins; hanged.|
|Bridget Cleary||c. 1870–1895||County Tipperary, Ireland||Unclear; body immolated, possible posthumously.|
|Giles Corey||c. 1611–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Crushed to death for refusing to plea during the Salem witch trials.|
|Martha Corey||1620s–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Hanged during the Salem witch trials|
|Helena Curtens||1722–1738||German||One of the last people to be executed for witchcraft in Germany.|
|Jean Delvaux||d. 1595||Belgian||Roman Catholic monk; beheaded|
|Catherine Deshayes||c. 1640–1680||French||AKA La Voisin; burned to death following the Affair of the Poisons|
|Thomas Doughty||d. 1578||English||Nobleman and explorer accused by Sir Francis Drake of witchcraft, mutiny and treason; beheaded|
|Mary Eastey||1634–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Hanged during the Salem witch trials|
|Anna Eriksdotter||1624–1704||Swedish||The last person executed for sorcery in Sweden.|
|Matteuccia de Francesco||d. 1428||Italian||Confessed to having flown on the back of a demon; burned to death.|
|Jeane Gardiner||d. 1651||British||Executed in Bermuda.|
|Gilles Garnier||d. 1573||French||Serial child murderer; convicted of witchcraft and lycanthropy, and burned to death.|
|Janet, Lady Glamis||d. 1537||Scottish||Accused of witchcraft by King James V; burned to death.|
|Ann Glover||d. 1688||Irish-born emigrant to Colonial America||Last person hanged for witchcraft in Boston.|
|Peronne Goguillon||d. 1679||French||Burned to death; one of the last women to be executed for witchcraft in France.|
|Anna Göldi||d. 1782||Swiss||Beheaded; known as "the last witch in Switzerland".|
|Sarah Good||1655–1692||Colonial American colonist||One of the first to be convicted in the Salem witch trials.|
|Urbain Grandier||1590–1634||French||Convicted following the Loudun possessions and burned to death.|
|Goodwife Greensmith||d. 1663||Colonial American colonist||Hanged at Hartford, Connecticut|
|Bertrand Guilladot||d. 1742||French||Priest who confessed to having made a pact with the devil|
|Mechteld ten Ham||d. 1605||Dutch||Confessed under torture and was burned to death.|
|Walpurga Hausmannin||d. 1587||German||Midwife who confessed to child murder, witchcraft and vampirism; burned to death.|
|Katharina Henot||1570–1627||German||Postmistress; burned to death.|
|Adrienne d'Heur||1585–1646||French||Burned to death.|
|Ann Hibbins||1656||Colonial American colonist||The fourth person executed for witchcraft in Massachusetts Bay Colony; hanged on Boston Common|
|Janet Horne||d. 1727||Scottish||Last British person to be executed for sorcery; burned to death.|
|Elin i Horsnäs||d. 1611||Swedish||Beheaded after her second trial for witchcraft.|
|Elizabeth Howe||1635–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|George Jacobs||1620–1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Mary Johnson||c. 1648||Colonial American colonist||Hanged at Hartford, Connecticut|
|Margaret Jones||1648||Colonial American colonist||The first person to be executed for witchcraft in Massachusetts Bay Colony; hanged.|
|Katherine Jonesdochter||d. 1616||Scottish||Strangled; burned to death at Scalloway|
|Johannes Junius||1573–1628||German||Tortured, burned to death during the Bamberg witch trials|
|Ursula Kemp||c. 1525–1582||English||Confessed to witchcraft and hanged.|
|Mrs. Kendall||c. 1650||Colonial American colonist||Hanged at Cambridge, Massachusetts.|
|Goodwife Knapp||d. 1653||Colonial American colonist||Hanged at Fairfield, Connecticut.|
|Anna Koldings||d. 1590||Danish||Burned to death.|
|Kolgrim||c. d. 1407||Colonial Norwegian (Greenlandic Norse)||Burned to death.|
|Christenze Kruckow||1558–1621||Danish||Noblewoman who confessed to cursing the marital bed of a rival; beheaded.|
|Alice Lake||1620 – c. 1650||Colonial American colonist||Wife of Henry Lake; hanged in Massachusetts.|
|Leatherlips||1732–1810||Native American||Native American leader who was sentenced to death for witchcraft and executed with a tomahawk.|
|Rebecca Lemp||d. 1590||German||One of 32 women convicted of witchcraft in a witch hunt in Nördlingen, burnt at the stake.|
|Anne Løset||d. 1679||Norwegian||Burned to death.|
|Laurien Magee||1689-1710||Irish||Burnt at the stake as part of the Islandmagee witch trial.|
|Susannah Martin||1621–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Executed during the Salem witch trials.|
|Malin Matsdotter||1613–1676||Swedish||Burned to death.|
|Petronilla de Meath||c. 1300–1324||Irish||Burned to death.|
|Rebecca Nurse||1621–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Hanged during the Salem witch trials|
|Alice Nutter||1612||English||Hanged during Pendle witches hunt|
|Lisbeth Nypan||c. 1610–1670||Norwegian||Cunning woman accused of making people sick to earn money; burned to death.|
|Ruth Osborne||1680–1751||English||Murdered by an unruly mob during a "trial by ducking".|
|Paisley witches||d. 1697||Scottish||Also known as the Bargarran witches, the last mass execution for witchcraft in western Europe.|
|Anne Palles||1619–1693||Danish||The last person officially executed for witchcraft in Denmark; beheaded.|
|Pappenheimer Family||d. 1600||German||Tortured and burned to death.|
|Alice Parker||d. 1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Mary Parker||d. 1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Maria Pauer||1730s–1750||Austrian||Last person executed for witchcraft in Austria; beheaded.|
|Anne Pedersdotter||d. 1590||Norwegian||Burned to death.|
|Pendle witches||d. 1612||English|
|Elisabeth Plainacher||1513–1583||Austrian||Only person to be executed for witchcraft in Vienna; burned to death.|
|Polissena of San Macario||d. 1571||Italian||Burned to death.|
|John Proctor||c. 1632–1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Ann Pudeator||d. 1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Marketta Punasuomalainen||1600s–1658||Finnish||Cunning woman, burned to death.|
|Wilmot Redd||1600s–1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Elspeth Reoch||d. 1616||Scottish||Executed in Kirkwall|
|Catherine Repond||1662–1731||Swiss||Strangled and burned to death.|
|Isabella Rigby||d. 1666||English||Believed to be the last person hanged for witchcraft in Lancashire.|
|Jòn Rögnvaldsson||d. 1625||Icelandic||Burned to death.|
|Maria Renata Saenger von Mossau||1680–1749||German||One of the last to be executed for witchcraft in Germany.|
|Agnes Sampson||d. 1591||Scottish||Midwife, garrotted and burned to death during the North Berwick witch trials.|
|Soulmother of Küssnacht||d. 1577||Swiss||Burned to death.|
|Gyde Spandemager||d. 1543||Danish||Burned to death.|
|Maren Spliid||c. 1600–1641||Danish||Burned to death.|
|Stedelen||d. c. 1400||Swiss||Confessed under torture to summoning demons; burned to death.|
|Agnes Waterhouse||c. 1503–1566||English||The first woman executed for witchcraft in England; hanged.|
|Thomas Weir||1599–1670||Scottish||Strangled and burned to death.|
|Sarah Wildes||1627–1692||English (emigrated to British America)||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|John Willard||c. 1672–1692||Colonial American colonist||Hanged during the Salem witch trials.|
|Witches of Belvoir||d. 1618||English||A mother and two daughters, the daughters were hanged.|
|Witches of Warboys||d. 1593||English||Alice Samuel and her family; hanged.|
|Alse Young||c. 1600–1647||Colonial American colonist||The first person recorded to have been executed for witchcraft in the American colonies; hanged.|
|Barbara Zdunk||1769–1811||Polish||Burned to death.|
|Anna Zippel||d. 1676||Swedish||Beheaded for abducting children.|
|Antti Tokoi||d.1682||Finnish||Accused and convicted of witchcraft, blasphemy, disgracing priests and healing.|
|Brita Zippel||d. 1676||Swedish||Beheaded for sorcery.|
|Mima Renard||d. 1692||French Brazilian||Prostitute, was accused by popular belief to bewitch men; burned to death.|
|Maria da Conceição||d. 1798||Brazilian||Accused and convicted of witchcraft to produce medicines and potions to attract men.|
|Ursulina de Jesus||d. 1754||Brazilian||Accused of removing her husband's virility to avoid having children; burned to death.|
|Zhang Liang||d. 646||Chinese||Accused of witchcraft and treason; executed.|
|Franziska Soder||d. 1606, 8 October||Rheinfelden, Swiss||Burned as a witch. Her husband paid 320 Gulden as "confiscation" to the Gentlemen' Chamber in Rheinfelden.|
Agnes Bernauer, executed in 1435
Catherine Deshayes aka La Voisin, executed in 1680
Urbain Grandier, executed in 1634
- ^ According to Kors & Peters, modern scholars place the number of executions for witchcraft at no greater than 50,000. According to Merriman, some estimates are higher. Levack multiplied the number of known European witch trials by the average rate of conviction and execution, to arrive at a figure of around 60,000 deaths. Barstow adjusted Levack's estimate to account for lost records, estimating 100,000 deaths. Hutton argues that Levack's estimate had already been adjusted for these, and revises the figure to approximately 40,000.
- Levack, p. 204
- Levack, p. 205
- Hall, P. 4
- Fradin, Judith Bloom, Dennis Brindell Fradin. The Salem Witch Trials. Marshall Cavendish. 2008, pg. 15
- Stack, p. 20
- Ripley, George; Dana, Charles Anderson (1859). The New American Cyclopaedia. D. Appleton and Company. p. 122.
- Jewett, Clarence F. The memorial history of Boston: including Suffolk County, Massachusetts. 1630-1880. Vol 2. Ticknor and Company, 1881. pp. 138-141
- Upham, Caroline E. (2003). Salem Witchcraft in Outline. Kessinger Publishing. p. 88. ISBN 0-7661-3900-X.
- Burr, George Lincoln (2003). Narratives of the Witchcraft Cases 1648 to 1706. Kessinger Publishing. p. 215. ISBN 0-7661-5773-3.
- Lea, Henry Charles (2004). Materials Toward a History of Witchcraft. Kessinger Publishing. p. 1118. ISBN 0-7661-8359-9.
- Profile of Goodwife Knapp
- Carpenter, William Henry; Arthur, Timothy Shay (1854). The History of Ohio: From its Earliest Settlement to the Present Time. Lippincott, Grambo & Co. p. 209.
- Guiley, Rosemary Ellen (2008). "Lemp, Rebecca (d. 1590)". The Encyclopedia of Witches, Witchcraft and Wicca (3rd ed.). New York: Facts On File. p. 206. ISBN 978-1-4381-2684-5.
- Islandmagee witch trial
- Burns, William E. (2003), Witch hunts in Europe and America: an encyclopedia, Greenwood Publishing Group, p. 3, ISBN 978-0-313-32142-9
- Schaeppi, Kathrin. (2000). Reunion: Schaeppi of Horgen: Family Chronicle. Basel: Gremper. Aus der Gemeindechronik Alte Bürgergeschlechter: Soder. p. 164.
- Kors, Alan Charles; Peters, Edward (2001). Witchcraft in Europe, 400–1700: a documentary history. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 17. ISBN 0-8122-1751-9.
- Merriman, Scott A. (2007). Religion and the law in America, Volume 1. ABC-CLIO. p. 527. ISBN 1-85109-863-1.
- Barstow, Anne Llewellyn (1994). Witchcraze: A New History of the European Witch Hunts. Pandora. ISBN 0-06-250049-X.
- Hall, David D. (2005). Witch-Hunting in Seventeenth-Century New England: A Documentary History 1638-1693. Duke University Press. ISBN 0-8223-3613-8.
- Hutton, Ronald (2001). The Triumph of the Moon: A History of Modern Pagan Witchcraft. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-285449-6.
- Levack, Brian P. (2006). The Witch-Hunt in Early Modern Europe. Pearson Education. ISBN 0-582-41901-8.
- Stack, Richard A. (2006). Dead wrong: violence, vengeance, and the victims of capital punishment. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 0-275-99221-7.