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Irish Witchcraft and Demonology

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Nicole Jimmelson
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« on: April 13, 2010, 11:04:43 am »

Irish Witchcraft and Demonology
by St. John D. Seymour
[1913]


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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2010, 11:05:07 am »

This is a survey of the Witch persecution in Ireland, as well as a wide array of other paranormal events such as poltergeists, ghosts, apparations and even an early UFO account. Very readable, yet well documented, this book has extensive and fascinating quotes from historical source documents.

Seymour proposes that the witch-craze was more muted in Ireland than elsewhere in Europe. Relatively speaking, there appear to have been fewer cases in Ireland. This doesn't mean that the consequences were any less harsh for the accused. In these texts we can see how people exhibiting what we would today consider schizophrenic or senile behavior were vulnerable to being accused of witchcraft.--J.B. Hare, Nov. 2002.
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2010, 11:05:27 am »

IRISH WITCHCRAFT AND DEMONOLOGY
BY
ST JOHN D. SEYMOUR, B.D.
Baltimore: Norman, Remington
[1913]
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2010, 11:05:46 am »

p. v

CONTENTS

CHAPTER I

SOME REMARKS ON WITCHCRAFT IN IRELAND
 1
 
CHAPTER II

A.D. 1324

DAME ALICE KYTELER, THE SORCERESS OF KILKENNY
 25
 
CHAPTER III

A.D. 1223-1583

THE KYTELER CASE AND ITS SURROUNDINGS OF SORCERY AND HERESY--MICHAEL SCOT--THE FOURTH EARL OF DESMOND--JAMES I AND THE IRISH PROPHETESS--A SORCERY ACCUSATION OF 1447--WITCHCRAFT TRIALS IN THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY--STATUTES DEALING WITH THE SUBJECT--EYE-BITERS--THE ENCHANTED EARL OF DESMOND
 46
 
p. vi
 
 
CHAPTER IV

A.D. 1606-1656

A CLERICAL WIZARD--WITCHCRAFT CURED BY A RELIC--RAISING THE DEVIL IN IRELAND--HOW HE WAS CHEATED BY A DOCTOR OF DIVINITY--STEWART AND THE FAIRIES--REV. ROBERT BLAIR AND THE MAN POSSESSED WITH A DEVIL--STRANGE OCCURRENCES NEAR LIMERICK--APPARITIONS OF MURDERED PEOPLE AT PORTADOWN--CHARMED LIVES--VISIONS AND PORTENTS--PETITION OF A BEWITCHED ANTRIM MAN IN ENGLAND--ARCHBISHOP USSHER'S PROPHECIES--MR. BROWNE AND THE LOCKED CHEST
 77
 
CHAPTER V

A.D. 1661

FLORENCE NEWTON, THE WITCH OF YOUGHAL
 105
 
CHAPTER VI

A.D. 1662-1686

THE DEVIL AT DAMERVILLE--AND AT BALLINAGARDE--TAVERNER AND HADDOCK'S GHOST--HUNTER AND THE GHOSTLY OLD WOMAN--A WITCH RESCUED BY THE DEVIL--DR. WILLIAMS AND THE HAUNTED HOUSE IN DUBLIN--APPARITIONS SEEN IN THE AIR IN CO. TIPPERARY--A CLERGY-MAN p. vii AND HIS WIFE BEWITCHED TO DEATH-BEWITCHING OF MR. MOOR--THE FAIRY-POSSESSED BUTLER--A GHOST INSTIGATES A PROSECUTION--SUPPOSED WITCHCRAFT IN CO. CORK--THE DEVIL AMONG THE QUAKERS
 132
 
CHAPTER VII

A.D. 1688

AN IRISH-AMERICAN WITCH
 176
 
CHAPTER VIII

A.D. 1689-1720

PORTENT ON ENTRY OF JAMES II--WITCHCRAFT IN CO. ANTRIM--TRADITIONAL VERSION OF SAME--EVENTS PRECEDING THE ISLAND--MAGEE WITCH-TRIAL--THE TRIAL ITSELF--DR. FRANCIS HUTCHINSON
 194
 
CHAPTER IX

A.D. 1807

TO PRESENT DAY MARY BUTTERS, THE CARNMONEY WITCH--BALLAD ON HER--THE HAND OF GLORY--A JOURNEY THROUGH THE AIR--A "WITCH" IN 1911--SOME MODERN ILLUSTRATIONS OF CATTLE- AND MILK- MAGIC--TRANSFERENCE OF DISEASE BY A cailleach--BURYING THE SHEAF--J.P.'S COMMISSION--CONCLUSION
 224
 


 
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:00 am »

p. 1

IRISH WITCHCRAFT AND DEMONOLOGY
CHAPTER I
SOME REMARKS ON WITCHCRAFT IN IRELAND
IT is said, though we cannot vouch for the accuracy of the statement, that in a certain book on the natural history of Ireland there occurs a remarkable and oft-quoted chapter on Snakes--the said chapter consisting of the words, "There are no snakes in Ireland." In the opinion of most people at the present day a book on Witchcraft in Ireland would be of equal length and similarly worded, except for the inclusion of the Kyteler case in the town of Kilkenny in the first half of the fourteenth century. For, with the exception of that classic incident, modern writers seem to hold that the witch-cult

p. 2

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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:14 am »

never found a home in Ireland as it did elsewhere. For example, the article on "Witchcraft" in the latest edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica mentions England and Scotland, then passes on to the Continent, and altogether ignores this country; and this is, in general, the attitude adopted by writers on the subject. In view of this it seems very strange that no one has attempted to show why the Green Isle was so especially favoured above the rest of the civilised world, or how it was
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:22 am »

that it alone escaped the contracting of a disease that not for years but for centuries had infected Europe to the core. As it happens they may spare themselves the labour of seeking for an explanation of Ireland's exemption, for we hope to show that the belief in witchcraft reached the country, and took a fairly firm hold there, though by no means to the extent that it did in Scotland and England. The subject has never been treated of fully before, though isolated notices may be found here and there; this book, however imperfect it may be, can fairly claim to be the first attempt to collect the scattered stories and records of witchcraft in Ireland
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:36 am »

p. 3

from many out-of-the-way sources, and to present them when collected in a concise and palatable form. Although the volume may furnish little or nothing new to the history or psychology of witchcraft in general, yet it may also claim to be an unwritten chapter in Irish history, and to show that in this respect a considerable portion of our country fell into line with the rest of Europe.

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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #8 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:51 am »

At the outset the plan and scope of this book must be made clear. It will be noticed that the belief in fairies and suchlike beings is hardly touched upon at all, except in those instances where fairy lore and witchcraft become inextricably blended.

The reason for this method of treatment is not hard to find. From the Anglo-Norman invasion down the country has been divided into two opposing elements, the Celtic and the English.
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #9 on: April 13, 2010, 11:06:55 am »

At the outset the plan and scope of this book must be made clear. It will be noticed that the belief in fairies and suchlike beings is hardly touched upon at all, except in those instances where fairy lore and witchcraft become inextricably blended.

The reason for this method of treatment is not hard to find. From the Anglo-Norman invasion down the country has been divided into two opposing elements, the Celtic and the English.
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2010, 11:07:07 am »

 Protestant) portion of the country that we find the development of witchcraft along similar lines to those in England or the Continent, and it is with this that we are dealing in this book; the Celtic element had its own superstitious beliefs, but these never developed in this direction. In England and Scotland during the mediæval and later periods of its existence witchcraft was an offence against the laws of God and man; in Celtic Ireland dealings with the unseen were not regarded with such
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #11 on: April 13, 2010, 11:07:16 am »

abhorrence, and indeed had the sanction of custom and antiquity. In England after the Reformation we seldom find members of the Roman Catholic Church taking any prominent part in witch cases, and this is equally true of Ireland from the same date. Witchcraft seems to have been confined m the Protestant party, as far as we can judge from the material at our disposal, while it is probable that the existence of the penal laws (active or quiescent) would deter the Roman Catholics from coming into any prominence in a matter which would be likely to attract public attention to itself in such a marked degree. A certain

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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #12 on: April 13, 2010, 11:07:27 am »

amount of capital has been made by some partisan writers out of this, but to imagine that the ordinary Roman Catholic of, let us say, the seventeenth century, was one whit less credulous or superstitious than Protestant peers, bishops, or judges, would indeed be to form a conception directly at variance with experience and common sense. Both parties had their beliefs, but they followed different channels, and affected public life in different ways.

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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2010, 11:07:37 am »

Another point with reverence to the plan of this work as indicated by the title needs a few words of explanation. It will be seen by the reader that the volume does not deal solely with the question of witchcraft, though that we have endeavoured to bring into prominence as much as possible, but that tales of the
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Nicole Jimmelson
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« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2010, 11:07:44 am »

supernatural, of the appearance of ghosts, and of the Devil, are also included, especially in chapters IV and VI. If we have erred in inserting these, we have at least erred in the respectable company of Sir Walter Scott, C. K. Sharpe, and other writers of note. We have included them, partly because they afford interesting reading, and are culled from sources with which

p. 6

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