Discouerie of Witchcraft

Students in Kristen Abbott Bennett's DGHM 110X: Introduction to Digital Humanities, and DGHM 390: Digital Humanities Special Topics at Framingham State University course transcribed and encoded Reginald Scot's 1584 Discouerie of Witchcraft. As of December 2021, the class has produced a draft version of most of the prefatory materials and Chapters 1-3 of this text. During the Spring 2022 Semester, Kelsey Rhodes, Intern for The Kit Marlowe Project, will edit the text, finish encoding the last epistle, and update the Personography. The text was encoded using schema generated by Martin Holmes, Janelle Jenstad, et. al. at The Map of Early Modern London.

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<!-- transcription of A1r imcomplete -->
     <front>
        <titlePage>
           <docTitle>
              <titlePart type="main" style="text-align: center;">The diſcouerie<lb/>
                 of vvitchcraft,<lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">Wherein the lewde dealing of witches<lb/>
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;">and witchmongers is notablie detected, the</hi></hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">knauerie of coniurors, the impietie of inchaun-<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;"><hi style="font-style: italic;"> tors, the follie of ſoothſaiers, the impudent falſ-</hi></hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">hood of couſenors, the infidelitie of atheiſts,<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;"><hi style="font-style: italic;">the peſtilent practiſes of Pythonists, the</hi></hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">curioſitie of figurecaſters, the va-</hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;"><hi style="font-style: italic;">nitie of dreamers, the begger-</hi></hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">lie art of Alcu-<lb/>
                    myſtrie,</hi><lb/>
                 The abhomination of idolatrie, the hor-
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;"><hi style="text-align: center;">rible art of poisoning, the vertue and power of</hi></hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">naturall magicke, and all the conueiances</hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;">of Legierdemaine and iuggling are deciphered:</hi><lb/>
                 and many other things opened, which
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;"> haue long lien hidden, howbeit</hi><lb/>
                 very necessarie to<lb/>
                 be knowne.<lb/><hi></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align: center;">Heerevnto is added a treatiſe vpon the</hi><lb/>
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;">nature and ſubſtance of ſpirits and diuels,<lb/></hi>
                 &amp; c: all latelie written
                 <hi style="font-style: italic;">by Reginald Scot</hi><lb/>
                 Eſquire.
                 <hi style="text-align: center;"><quote source="Bible">I.Iohn.4,I.</quote>
                 <quote source="Bible" style="font-style: italic;">Beleeue not euerie ſpirit, but trie the ſpirites, whether they are<lb/>
                    of God; for manie falſe prophets are gone<lb/>
                 out into the world, &amp; c.</quote>
                 1584.</hi>
                 <fw type="signature"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original;"></supplied>A1r</fw><pb/>
              </titlePart>
           </docTitle>
           <docImprint/>
        </titlePage>
     </front>

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     <body>
<!-- Page A2r transcribed and coded by Kim Chambers under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->
        <div type="dedicatoryEpistle"> <!--ornament-->
           <salute><hi style="font-size:300%; text-indent:1em; font-style:italic"></hi> To the Honorable, mine eſpeciall good<lb/>
              <hi style="font-size:175%; text-indent:2ems; font-style:italic"></hi>Lord, <persName type="hist">Sir Roger Manwood</persName>Knight, Lord<lb/>
              <hi style="font-size:125%; text-ident:4ems; font-style:italic"></hi> <persName type="hist">cheefe Baron of hir Maiesties Court<lb/>
                 <hi style="font-size:125%; text-indent:7ems; font-style:italic"></hi>of the Eſchequer]<lb/></persName></salute>
           <p><hi style="float:left;font size:1400%;padding:0.5rem;margin:0.2rem 1rem0;">I</hi><hi style="font-size:200">N SO MVCH</hi><lb/>
              as I know that your
              Lordship is by na-<lb/>
              ture whollie incli-<lb/>
              ned, and in purpoſe<lb/>
              earneſtly bent to re-<lb/>
              leeue the poor, and<lb/>
              that not onlie with<lb/>
              hoſpitalitie and al-<lb/>
              mes, but by diuerſe<lb/>
              other deuiſes and<lb/>
              waies tending to<lb/>
              their comfort, ha-<lb/>
              uing (as it were) fra-<lb/>
              med and ſet your ſelfe to the helpe and maintenance<lb/>
              of their eſtate; as appeareth by your charge and trauell in<lb/>
              that behalfe. Whereas alſo you haue a ſpeciall care for<lb/>
              the ſupporting of their right, and redreſſing of their<lb/>
              wrongs, as neither deſpiſing their calamitie, nor yet for-<lb/>
              getting their complaint, ſeeking all meanes for their a-<lb/>
              mendement, and for the reformation of their diſorders,<lb/>
              euen as a verie father to the poore. Finallie, for that I am a<lb/>
              poore member of that commonwelth, where your Lord-<lb/>
              ſhip is a principall perſon; I thought this my trauell, in the<lb/>
              behalfe of the poore, the aged, and the ſimple, might be<lb/></p><!-- Para continues on next page -->
              <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;">verie</fw>  
              <fw type="signature" style="text-align;center;">A2<supplied reason="omitted-in-original">r</supplied></fw> 
              <pb/>
<!-- Page A2v transcribed and coded by Gwendolyn Carpenter under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p> verie fitlie commended vnto you: for a weake houſe re-<lb/>
              quireth a ſtrong ſtaie. In which reſpect I giue <persName type="lit">God</persName> thanks,<lb/>
              that hath raiſed vp vnto me ſo mightie a freend for them<lb/>
              as your Lordſhip is, who in our lawes haue ſuch know-<lb/>
              ledge, in gouernment ſuch diſcretion, in theſe cauſes ſuch<lb/>
              experience, and in the commonwealth ſuch authoritie;<lb/>
              And neuertheleſſe vouchſafe to deſcend to the confidera-<lb/>
              tion of theſe baſe and interior matters, which miniſter<lb/>
              more care and trouble, than worldlie ellimination.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em;">And in ſomuch as your Lordſhip knoweth, or rather<lb/>
              exerciſeth the office of a judge, whoſe part it is to heare<lb/>
              with courteſie, and to determine with equitie; it cannot<lb/>
              but be apparent vnto you, that when puniſhment excee-<lb/>
              deth the fault, it is rather to be thought vengeance than<lb/>
              correction.  In which reſpect I knowe you ſpend more<lb/>
              time and trauell in the conuerſion and reformation, than<lb/>
              in the ſubuerſion &amp; confuſion of offenders, as being well<lb/>
              pleaſed to augment your owne priuate paines, to the end<lb/>
              you may diminiſh their publikeſmart. For in truth, that<lb/>
              commonwealth remaineth in wofull ſtate, where fetters<lb/>
              and halters beare more ſwaie than mercie and due com-<lb/>
              paſſion.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em;">Howbeit, it is naturall to vnnaturall people, and pecu-<lb/>
              liar vnto witchmongers, to purſue the poore, to accuſe<lb/>
              the ſimple, and to kill the innocent; ſupplieng in rigor and<lb/>
              malice towards others, that which they themſelues want<lb/>
              in proofe and diſcretion, or the other in offenſe or occa-<lb/> 
              ſion. But as a cruell hart and an honeſt mind doo ſeldome<lb/>
              meete and feed togither in a diſh; ſo a diſcreet and merci-<lb/>
              full migiſtrate, and a happie commonwealth cannot be<lb/>
              ſeparated aſunder. How much then are we bound to<lb/>
              <persName type="lit">God</persName>, who hath giuen vs a <persName type="lit">Queene</persName>, that of iuſtice is not<lb/>
              only the very perfect image &amp; paterne; but alſo of mercie<lb/>
              &amp; clemencie (vnder <persName type="lit">God</persName>) the meere fountaine &amp; bodie it<lb/>
              ſelfe? In ſomuch as they which hunt moſt after bloud in<lb/></p> <!-- Para continues on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align:right">theſe</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align:center"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A2v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>

<!-- Page A3r transcribed and coded by Sage Lorenzo under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p>theſe daies, haue leaſt authoritie to ſhed it. Moreouer,<lb/>
              fith I ſee that in caſes where lenitie might be noiſome, &amp;<lb/>
              puniſhment wholeſome to the commonwealth; there<lb/>
              no reſpect of perſon can moue you, no authoritie can ab-<lb/>
              baſh you, no feare, no threts can daunt you in performing<lb/>
              the dutie of iuſtice.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em">In that reſpect againe I find your Lordſhip a fit perſon,<lb/>
              to iudge and looke vpon this preſent treatiſe. Wherein I<lb/>
              will bring before you, as it were to the barre, two forts of<lb/>
              moſt arrogant and wicked people, the firſt challenging to<lb/>
              themſelues, the ſecond attributing vnto others, that<lb/>
              power which onelie apperteineth to <persName type="lit">God</persName>,<hi style="font-style:superscript;">a</hi>who onelie is 
                  <note type="authorial" place="margin-right" style="font-size:.75"><quote source="Bible:Apoc"><hi style="font-style:superscript;">a</hi> Apoc. 4, 11.</quote></note><lb/>
              the <persName type="lit">Creator</persName> of all things,<hi style="font-style:superscript;">b</hi>who onelie ſearcheth the hart <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Rom"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">b</hi> Rom. 8.</quote></quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Acts">Acts. 5.</quote><quote source="Bible:Apoc"> Apoc. 2.</quote></quote></note><lb/>
              and reines, who onelie<hi style="font-style:superscript;">c</hi>knoweth our imaginations and<lb/>
              thoughts, who onelie<hi style="font-style:superscript;">d</hi>openeth all ſecrets, who<hi style="font-style:superscript;">e</hi>onelie <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Luke"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">c</hi> Luke. 16</quote></quote></note><lb/>
              worketh great wonders, who onelie hath power<hi style="font-style:superscript;">f</hi>to raiſe <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Daniel"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">d</hi> Dan. 2. &amp; 28, &amp; 47.</quote></quote></note><lb/>
              vp &amp; caſt downe; who onelie maketh thunder, lightning,<note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Psalms"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">e</hi> Pſalm. 72. &amp; 136.<quote><quote source="Bible:Jeremiah">Ier. 5.</quote></quote></quote></quote></note><lb/>
              raine, tempeſts, and reſtraineth them at his pleaſure; who<lb/>
              onelie<hi style="font-style:superscript;">g</hi>ſendeth life and death, ſickneſſe &amp; health, wealth <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Job"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">f</hi> Iob. 5. &amp; 36</quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Samuel">Sam. 12.</quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Reg">1. Reg. 8. 2 Reg. 3.</quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Isaiah">Iſaie. 5.</quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Zechariah">Zach. 10. &amp; 14.</quote><quote><quote source="Bible:Amos">Amos. 4. 7.</quote></quote></quote></quote></quote></quote></quote></note><lb/>
              and wo; who neither giueth nor lendeth his<hi style="font-style:superscript;">h</hi>glorie to<lb/>
              anie creature.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em">And therefore, that which greeueth me to the bot-<lb/>
              tome of my hart, is, that theſe witchmongers cannot be<lb/>
              content, to wreſt out of <persName type="lit">Gods</persName> hand his almightie power,<lb/>
              and keepe it themſelues, or leaue it with a witch: but that,<note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Job"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">g</hi> Iob. 1.</quote></quote></note><lb/>
              when by drift of argument they are made to laie downe<note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><hi style="font-size: .75"></hi><quote source="Bible:Isaiah"><quote><hi style="font-style:superscript;">h</hi> Iſaie. 42, 8.</quote></quote></note><lb/>
              the bucklers, they yeeld them vp to the diuell, or at the<lb/>
              leaſt praie aid of him, as though the raines of all mens<lb/>
              liues and actions were committed into his hand; and that<lb/>
              he ſat at the ſterne, to guide and direct the courſe of the<lb/>
              whole world, imputing vnto him power and abilitie<lb/>
              inough to doo as great things, and as ſtrange miracles as<lb/>
              euer <persName type="lit">Chriſt</persName> did.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em">But the doctors of this ſupernaturall doctrine ſaie ſom-<lb/>
              times, that the witch doth all theſe things by virtue of hir<lb/></p><!-- paragraph continues on next page -->
              <fw type="catchword" style="text-align:right;">charmes;</fw>
              <fw type="signature" style="text-align:center;">A. iij.<supplied reason="omitted-in-original">r</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
<!-- Page A3v transcribed and coded by Caroline Hawkes under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->        
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p>charmes; ſometimes that a ſpirituall, ſometimes that a <lb/>
              corporall diuell doth accompliſh it; ſometimes they ſaie<lb/>
              that which he himſelfe hath wrought; ſometimes that<lb/>
              the diuell ſeemeth to doo that by compulſion, which he<lb/>
              doth moſt willinglie. Finallie, the writers herevpon are ſo<lb/>
              eloquent, and full of varietie; that ſometimes they write<lb/>
              that the diuell dooth all this by <persName type="lit">Gods</persName> permiſſion onelie;<lb/>
              ſometimes by his licence, ſometimes by his appointment:<lb/>
              ſo as (in effect and truth) not the diuell, but the high and <lb/>
              mightie king of kings, and Lord of hoſts, euen <persName type="lit">God</persName> him-<lb/>
              ſelle, ſhould this waie be made obedient and feruile to<lb/>
              obeie and performe the will &amp; commandement of a ma-<lb/>
              licious old witch, and miraculouſlie to anſwere hir appe-<lb/>
              tite, as well in euerie trifling vanitie, as in moſt horrible<lb/>
              executions; as the reuenger of a doting old womans ima-<lb/>
              gined wrongs, to the deſtruction of manie innocent chil-<lb/>
              dren, and as a ſupporter of hir paſſions, to the vndoing of<lb/>
              manie a poore ſoule. And I ſee not, but a witch may as <lb/>
              well inchant, when ſhe will; as a lier may lie when he liſt:<lb/>
              and ſo ſhould we poſſeſſe nothing, but by a witches li-<lb/>
              cence and permiſſion. <lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em;"> And now forſooth it is brought to this point, that all di-<lb/>
              uels, which were woont to be ſpirituall, may at their plea-<lb/>
              ſure become corporall, and ſo ſhew themſelues familiar-<lb/>
              lie to witches and coniurors, and to none other, and by<lb/>
              them onlie may be made tame, and kept in a box, &amp;c. So<lb/>
              as a malicious old woman may command hir diuell to <lb/>
              plague hir neighbo[rs] and he is afflicted in manner and <lb/>
              forme as ſhe deſireth. But then commeth another witch, <lb/>
              and ſhe biddeth hir diuell helpe, and he healeth the ſame <lb/>
              pa[rt]ie. So as they make it a kingdome diuided in itſelfe,<lb/>
              and therefore I truſt it will not long endure, but will ſhort-<lb/>
              lie be ouerthrowne, according to the words of our Sa-<lb/>
              uior, <hi style="font-style:italic;"> <foreign xml:lang="la">Omne regnum in ſe diuiſum deſolabitur,</foreign> </hi> Euerie king-<lb/></p>
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;">dome</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align;center;"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A3v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
   
<!-- Page A4r transcribed and coded by Timothy Reed under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->   
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p>dome diuided in it ſelfe ſhalbe deſolate. <lb/> </p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em;">And although ſome ſaie that the diuell is the witches<lb/> 
              inſtrument, to bring hir purpoſes and practiſes to paſſe :<lb/> 
              yet others ſaie thatſhe is his inſtrument, to execute his<lb/> 
              pleaſure in anie thing, and therefore to be executed. But<lb/> 
              then (me thinks) ſhe ſhould be iniuriouſlie dealt withall,<lb/> 
              and put to death for anothers offenſe: for actions are not<lb/> 
              iudged by inſtrumentall cauſes; neither dooth the end<lb/> 
              and purpoſe of that which is done, depend vpon the<lb/> 
              meane inſtrument. Finallie, if the witch doo it not, why<lb/> 
              ſhould the witch die for it? But they ſaie that witches are<lb/> 
              perſuaded, and thinke, that they doo indeed thoſe miſ-<lb/> 
              cheefs; and haue a will to performe that which the diuell<lb/> 
              committeth : and that therefore they are worthie to die.<lb/> 
              By which reaſon euerie one ſhould be executed, that wi-<lb/> 
              ſheth euill to his neighbor, &amp;c. But if the will ſhould be<lb/> 
              puniſhed by man, according to the offenſe againſt <persName type="lit">God</persName>,<lb/> 
              we ſhould be driuen by thouſands at once to the ſlaugh-<lb/> 
              terhouſe or butcherie. For whoſoeuer loatheth corre-<note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><quote source="biblical:Prov."><hi style="font-size:.75;"></hi></quote><quote> Prouerb. 5.</quote></note><lb/> 
              ction ſhall die. And who ſhould eſcape execution, if this<lb/> 
              lothſomneſſe (I ſaie) ſhould extend to death by the ciuill<lb/> 
              lawes. Alſo the reward of ſinne is death. Howbeit, eue-<lb/> 
              rie one that ſinneth,is not to be put to death by the magi-<lb/> 
              ſtrate. But (my Lord) it ſhalbe proued in my booke, and<lb/> 
              your Lordſhip ſhall trie it to be true, as well here at home<lb/> 
              in your natiue countrie,as alſo abrode in your ſeuerall cir-<lb/> 
              cuits, that(beſides them that be <foreign xml:lang="la" style="font-style:italic;">venefice</foreign>, which are plaine<lb/> 
              poiſoners there will be found among our witches one-<lb/> 
              lie two ſorts; the one ſort being ſuch by imputation,as ſo<lb/> 
              thought of by others (and theſe are abuſed, and not abu-<lb/> 
              ſors) the other by acceptation, as being willingſo to be<lb/> 
              accompted (and theſe be meere couſenors.)<lb/></p> 
           <p style="text-indent:1em;"><persName type="hist">Caluine</persName>treating of theſe magicians, calleth them<note style="font-style:italic;" type="authorial" place="margin-right"><quote source="biblical:Deut."><hi style="font-size:.75;"></hi><hi style="font-style:italic;"></hi></quote><quote>Instit lib. 5.ca.8. ſect6. item upon Deut.cap.18.</quote></note><lb/> 
              couſenors, ſaieng that they vſe their iuggling knacks one-<lb/> 
              lie to amaſe or abuſe the people; or elſe for fame: but he<lb/></p> <!-- Para continue on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align:right;">might</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align:center;">A.iiij.<supplied reason="omitted-in-original">r</supplied></fw>			
           <pb/>

<!-- Page A4v transcribed and coded by Nick Ribeiro under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p><!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size-->
                  <note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%; font-style: italic;"><bibl>Lib. de lamiis</bibl>,pag. 5.</note>
              might rather haue ſaid for gaine. <persName type="lit">Eraſtus</persName> himſelfe, be-<lb/>
              ing a principall writer in the behalfe of witches omnipo-<lb/>
              tencie, is forced to confeſſe, that theſe Greeke words,<lb/>
              <foreign xml:lang="grc" style="font-style: italic;">μαλία, μαΓλαλία, φαρμαηία</foreign> are moſt commonlie put for<lb/>
              illuſion, falſe packing, couſenage, fraud, knauerie and de-<lb/>
              ceipt: and is further driven to faie, that in ancient time,<lb/>
              the learned were not ſo blockiſh, as not to ſee that the<lb/>
              promiſes of magicians and inchanters were falſe, and no-<lb/>
              thing elſe but knauerie, couſenage, and old wiues fables;<lb/>
              and yet defendeth he their flieng in the aire, their tranf-<lb/>
              ferring of corne or graſſe from one feeld to another, &amp;c.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent: 1em;">But as <persName type="lit">Eraſtus</persName> diſagreeth herein with himſelfe and his<lb/>
              freends: ſo is there no agreement among anie of thoſe<lb/>
              writers, but onlie in cruelties, abſurdeties, and impoſſibili-<lb/>
              ties. And theſe (my Lord) <!--Lord here may be referring to Sir Roger Manwood--> that fall into ſo manifeſt con-<lb/>
              tradictions, and into ſuch abſurd aſſeuerations, are not of<lb/>
              the inferior ſort of writers; neither are they all <orgName>papiſts</orgName>, but<lb/>
              men of ſuch accompt, as whole names giue more credit<lb/>
              to their cauſe, than their writings. In whoſe behalf I am<lb/>
              ſorie, and partlie for reuerence ſupreſſe their fondeſt er-<lb/>
              rors and fowleſt abſurdeties; dealing ſpeciallie with them<lb/>
              <!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size--><note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%;"><quote source="biblical"><hi style="font-style: superscript;">a</hi>Iſaie. 59, 7. Rom. 3, 15.</quote></note>that moſt content in crueltie,<hi style="font-style: superscript;">a</hi> whoſe feete are ſwift<lb/>
              <!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size--><note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%;"><quote source="biblical"><hi style="font-style: superscript;">b</hi>Eccl. 27, 5.</quote></note>to ſhed bloud, ſtriuing (as <hi style="font-style: superscript;">b</hi> <persName type="lit">Ieſus the ſonne of Sirach</persName> faith)<lb/>
              <!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size--><note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%;"><quote source="biblical"><hi style="font-style: superscript;">c</hi>Prou. 1, 16.</quote></note>and haſting (as <hi style="font-style: superscript;">c</hi> <persName type="lit">Salomon the ſonne of Dauid</persName> faith) to<lb/>
              <!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size--><note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%;"><quote source="biblical"><hi style="font-style: superscript;">d</hi>Ier. 2, 34.</quote></note>powre out the bloud of the innocent; whoſe heat againſt<lb/>
              <!--In the original text, this note features a reduced font size--><note type="authorial" place="margin-left" style="font-size: 75%;"><quote source="biblical"><hi style="font-style: superscript;">e</hi>Pſ. 139, 15. Eſai. 33, 15.</quote></note>these poore wretches cannot be allaied with anie other<lb/>
              liquor than bloud. And therefore I feare that<hi style="font-style: superscript;">d</hi> vnder their<lb/>
              wings will be found the bloud of the foules of the poore,<lb/>
              at that daie, when the <persName type="lit">Lord</persName> ſhall ſaie;<hi style="font-style: superscript;">e</hi> Depart from me<lb/>
              ye bloudthirſtie men.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent: 1em;">And bicauſe I know your Lordſhip <!--Lordship here may be referring to Sir Roger Manwood--> will take no coun-<lb/>
              ſell againſt innocent bloud, but rather ſupreſſe them<lb/>
              that ſeeke to embrew their hands therein, I haue made<lb/>
              choiſe to open their caſe vnto you, and to laie their miſe-<lb/>
              rable calamatie before your feete: following herein the<lb/></p><!-- Para continue on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align: right;">aduiſe</fw><lb/>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align: center;"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A.4.v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
           
<!-- Page A5r transcribed and coded by Ellie Lynch under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p>aduiſe of that learned man<persName type="hist"> Brentius</persName>,who faith;<foreign xml:lang="la" style="font-style:italic;"> Si quis</foreign><lb/>
                  <note type="authorial" place="margin-right" style="font-style:italic;font-size: 75%;">In epistole<lb/>
                  <foreign xml:lang="la">ad</foreign><persName type="hist">Io Wier.</persName><!--Possibly referencing Johann Wier--></note>
              <foreign xml:lang="la" style="font-style:italic;">Admonnuerit magistratum, ne in
              miſer as illas mulierculas ſa- <lb/> 
              uiat, eum ego arbitror diuinitús excitatum;</foreign> that is, If anie<lb/> 
              admoniſh the magiſtrate not to deale too hardlie with<lb/> 
              theſe miſerable wretches, that are called witches, I thinke<lb/> 
              him a good inſtrument raiſed vp for this purpoſe by<persName type="lit"> God </persName><lb/>
              himſelſe.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent: 2em;"> But it will perchance beſaid by witchmongers;to wit, <lb/> 
              by ſuch as attribute to witches the power which apper-<lb/> 
              teineth to <persName type="lit"> God </persName> onelie, that I haue made choiſe of your<lb/>
              <persName type="hist"> Lordſhip </persName>to be a patrone to this my booke; bicauſe I think <lb/> 
              you fauour mine opinions, and by that meanes may the<lb/> 
              more freelie publiſh anie error or conceipt of mine owne;<lb/> 
              which ſhould rather be warranted by your <persName type="hist"> Lordſhip </persName> au-<lb/> 
              thoritie, than by the word of <persName type="lit"> God </persName>, or by ſufficient argu-<lb/> 
              ment. But I proteſt the contrarie, and by theſe preſents<lb/> 
              I renounce all proteƈtion, and deſpiſe all freendſhip that<lb/> 
              might ſerue to helpe towards the ſuppreſſing or ſupplan-<lb/> 
              ting of truth: knowing alſo that your <persName type="hist"> Lordſhip </persName> is farre<lb/> 
              from allowing anie iniure done vnto man; much more<lb/> 
              an enimie to them that go about to diſhonor <persName type="lit"> God </persName>, or to<lb/> 
              embezill the title of his immortall glorie. But bicauſe I<lb/> 
              know you to be perſpicuous, and able to ​​ſee downe into<lb/> 
              the depth and bottome of cauſes, and are not to be car-<lb/> 
              ried awaie with the vaine perſuaſion or ſuperſtition either<lb/> 
              of man, cuſtome, time, or multitude, but mooued with the<lb/> 
              authortitie of truth onlie: I craue your countenance here-<lb/> 
              in, euen ſo farre foorth, and no further, than the lawe of<lb/>
              <persName type="lit"> God </persName>,the lawe of nature, the lawe of this land, and the rule<lb/> 
              of reaſon ſhall require. Neither doo I treat for theſe poore<lb/>
              people anie otherwiſe, but ſo, and with one hand you may<lb/> 
              ſuſtaine the good, and with the other ſuppreſſe the euill:<lb/> 
              wherein you ſhalbe thought a father to orphans, and ad-<lb/> 
              uocate to widowes, a guide to the blind, a ſtaie to the<lb/>
              lame, a comfort &amp;countenance to the honeſt,a ſcourge<lb/></p><!-- para continues on nextpage-->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;">and</fw>
           <fw type="signature"><supplied reason="omitted in original">A5r</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
           
<!-- Page A5v transcribed and coded by Hilary Lincoln under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;font-size:150%;">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p>and terror to the wicked.<lb/> </p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em">Thus farre I haue beene bold to vſe your Lordſhips pa-
              <lb/> tience, being offended with myſelfe, that I could not in <lb/> breuitie vtter
              ſuch matter as I haue deliuered amplie: <lb/> whereby (I confeſſe) occaſion of
              tediouſnes might be mi- <lb/> niſtred, were it not that your great grauitie ioined
              with <lb/> your ſingular conſtancie in reading and iudging be means <lb/> of the
              contrarie. And I wiſh euen with all my hart, that I <lb/> could make people conceiue
              the ſubſtance of my writing, <lb/> and not to miſconſtrue anie part of my meaning.
              Then <lb/> doubtles would I perſuade my ſelfe, that the companie of <lb/>
              witchmongers, &amp;c: being once decreaſed, the number <lb/> alſo of witches, amp;c:
              would ſoone be diminiſhed. But true <lb/> be the words of the Poet, <lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;"><foreign xml:lang="la" style="font-style:italic;font-size:0.75%">Haudquaquam poteris ſortirier omnia ſolus,<lb/> 
              Námque alys diui bello pollere dederunt, <lb/>  
              Huic ſaltandi artem, voce huic cytharáque canendi: <lb/> 
              Rurſum alyinſeruit ſagax in pectore magnus <lb/> 
              Iupiter ingenium, &amp;c. </foreign><lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:1em">And therefore as doubtfull to preuaile by perſuading, <lb/>
              though I haue reaſon and common ſenſe on my ſide; I <lb/>
              reſt vpon earneſt wiſhing; namelie, to all people an abſo- <lb/>
              lute truſt in <persName type="lit">God</persName> the creator, and not in creatures, which <lb/>
              is to make fleſh our arme: that <persName type="lit">God</persName> may haue his due <lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:1em">honor, which by the vndutifulnes of manie is turned <lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:2em">into diſhonor, and leſſ cauſe of offenſe and er-</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:3em">rour giuen by common receiued euill ex-</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:4em">ample. And to your Lordſhip I wiſh,<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:5em">as increaſe of honour, ſo con-<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:6em">tinuance of good health,<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:7em">and happie daies.</hi></p><lb/>
           <signed><hi style="font-size:150%">Your Lordſhips to be commanded</hi> <lb/>
              <hi style="font-style:italic;"><persName type="hist">Reginald Scot</persName>.</hi>
           </signed>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align:center;"><supplied reason="omitted in original">A5v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
        </div>
        
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        <div type="dedicatoryEpistle">
           <salute><hi style="font-size: 150%">To the right worſhipfull Sir</hi>
              <hi style="font-size: 100%"><persName type="hist">Thomas Scot Knight,</persName> &amp;c.</hi>
           </salute>
           <p style="font-style:italic;"><seg style="decorInit;font-size:700%">S</seg> ir, I ſee among other maleƒaƈtors<lb/>
              manie poore old women conuented be-<lb/>
              fore you for working of miracles, other<lb/>
              wiſe called witchcraft, and therefore I<lb/>
              thought you alſo a meet perſon to whom<lb/>
              I might cōmmend my booke. And here<lb/>
              I haue occaſion to ſpeake of your ſincere<lb/>
              adminiſtration of iustice, and of your dexteritie, diſcretion,<lb/>
              charge, and trauell emploied in that behalfe, wherof I am ocu-<lb/>
              latus testis. Howbeit I had rather refer the reader to com-<lb/>
              mon fame, and their owne eies and eares to be ſatisfied; than<lb/>
              to ſend them to a Stationers shop, where manie times lies are<lb/>
              vendible, and truth contemptible. For I being of your houſe,<lb/> 
              of your name, &amp; of your bloud; my foot being vnder your ta-<lb/>
              ble, my hand in your dish, or rather in your purſſe, might bee<lb/>
              thought to flatter you in that, wherein (I knowe) I should<lb/>
              rather offend you than pleaſe you. And what need I currie fa-<lb/>
              uour with my moſt aſſured friend? And if I should onelie pub-<lb/>
              lish thoſe vertues (though they be manie) which give me ſpe-<lb/>
              ciall occaſion to exhibit this my travell unto you, I should doo<lb/>
              as a painter, that deſcribeth the foot of a notable perſonage,<lb/>
              and leaveth all the beſt features in his bodie untouched.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;font-style:italic;">I therefore (at this time) doo onelie deſire you to conſider<lb/>
              of my report, concerning the evidence that is commonlie<lb/>
              brought before you againſt them. See firſt whether the evi-<lb/>
              dence be not friuolous, &amp; whether the prooƒs brought against<lb/>
              them be not incredible, conſiſting of gheſſes, preſumptions, &amp;<lb/>
              impoſſibilities contrarie to reaſon, ſcripture, and nature. See<lb/>
              alſo what perſons complaine vpon them, whether they be not<lb/>
              of the baſeſt,the unwiſeſt,amp; most faithles kind of people. Alſo<lb/></p><!-- Para continues on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align:right;">may</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align;center;"><supplied reason="omitted in original">A6R</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
           
<!-- Page A6v transcribed and coded by Meeghan Bresnahan under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-size:150%">The Epistle.</fw>            
           <p style="font-style:italic;">may it pleaſe you to waie what accuſations and crimes they<lb/>
              laie to their charge, namelie: She was at my houſse of late she<lb/>
              would haue had a pot of milke, she departed in a chafe bicauſe<lb/>
              she had it not, she railed, she curſſed, she mumbled and whiſ-<lb/>
              pered, and finallie she ſaid she would be euen with me: and<lb/>
              ſoone after my child, my cow, my ſow, or my pullet died, or<lb/>
              was ſtrangelie taken. Naie (if it pleaſe your vvorship) I<lb/>
              haue further proofe: I was with a wiſe woman, and she told<lb/>
              me I had an ill neighbour, &amp; that she would come to my houſe<lb/>
              yer it were long, and ſo did she; and that she had a marke a-<lb/>
              boue hir waste, &amp; ſo had she: and <persName type="lit">God</persName> forgiue me, my ſtomach<lb/>
              hath gone againſt hir a great while. Hir mother before hir<lb/>
              was counted a witch, she hath beene beaten and ſcratched by<lb/>
              the face till bloud was drawne upon hir, bicauſse she hath<lb/>
              beene ſuſpected, &amp; afterwards ſome of thoſe perſons were ſaid<lb/>
              to amend. Theſse are the certeinties that I heare in their eui-<lb/>
              dences.<lb/> </p>
           <p style="text-indent:3em;font-style:italic;">Note alſo how eaſilie they may be brought to confeſſe that<lb/>
              which they neuer did, nor lieth in the power of man to doo:<lb/>
              and then ſee whether I haue cauſe to write as I doo. Further,<lb/>
              if you shall ſee that infidelitie, poperie, and manie other ma-<lb/>
              nifest hereſies be backed and shouldered, and their profeſſors<lb/>
              animated and hartened, by yeelding to creatures ſuch infinit<lb/>
              power as is wreſted out of <persName type="lit">Gods</persName> hand, and attributed to wit-<lb/>
              ches: finallie, if you shall perceiue that I haue faithfullie and<lb/> 
              trulie deliuered and ſet downe the condition and ſtate of the<lb/>
              witch, and alſo of the witchmonger, and have confuted by<lb/>
              reaſon and lawe, and by the word of <persName type="lit">God</persName> it ſelfe, all mine ad-<lb/>
              uerſaries obiections and arguments: then let me haue your<lb/>
              countenance againſt them that maliciouſie oppoſe themſelues<lb/>
              against me.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:3em;font-style:italic;">My greateſt aduerſaries are yoong ignorance and old cu-<lb/>
              ſtome. For what follie ſoeuer tract of time hath fostered, it is<lb/></p> <!-- para continues on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;font-style:italic;">ſo</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align;center;"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A6r</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
           
<!-- Page A7r transcribed and coded by Lilah Determan under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-size:150%">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p style="font-style;italic;">ſo ſuperftitiouſlie purſued of ſome, as though no error could be<lb/> 
                 acquainted with custome. But if the lawe of nations would<lb/> 
                 iodine with ſuch custome, to the maintenance of ignorance,<lb/> 
                 and to the ſuppreſſing of knowledge; the ciuileſt countrie in<lb/> 
                 the world would ſoone become barbarous, &amp;c. For as know-<lb/> 
                 ledge and time diſcouereth errors, ſo dooth ſuperſtition and<lb/> 
                 ignorance in time breed them. And concerning the opini-<lb/> 
                 ons of ſuch, as wish that ignorance should rather be maintei-<lb/> 
                 ned, than knowledge buſilie ſearched for, bicauſe thereby of-<lb/> 
                 fenſe may grow : I anſwer, that we are commanded by <persName type="lit">Chriſt</persName>
                     <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><quote source="Bible:John" style="font-size:.75;">John.5.</quote><lb/></note>
                     <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><quote source="Bible:Proverbs" style="font-size:.75%;">Prou.15,I.</quote></note>
                  himſelfe to ſearch for knowledge : for it is the kings honour<lb/> 
                 (as Salmon faith) to ſearch out a thing. <lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:3em;font-style;italic;">
              <persName type="hist">Aristotle</persName> ſaid to <persName type="hist">Alexander</persName>, that a mind well furnished<lb/>
                 was more beautiful than a bodie richlie araied. What can<lb/>
                 be more odious to man, or offenſisue to <persName type="lit">God</persName>, than ignorance:<lb/>
                 for through ignorance the I ewes did put <persName type="lit">Chriſt</persName> to death.<lb/>
                      <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"> <quote source="Bible:Acts" style="font-size:.75;">Acts.3.</quote><lb/></note>
                      <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"><quote source="Bible:Proverbs" style="font-size:.75;">Prouerbs.9.</quote></note>                 
                 Which ignorance whoſoeuer forſaketh, is promiſed life euer-<lb/>
                 lasting: and therefore among <orgName type="hist">Christians</orgName> it should be abhor-<lb/>
                 red aboue all other things. For even as when we wrestle in<lb/>
                 the darke, we tumble in the mire,&amp;c. ſo when we ſee not<lb/>
                 the truth, we wallow in errors. A blind man may ſeeke long<lb/>
                 in the riches yer he find a needle; and as ſoone is a doubt<lb/>
                 diſcauſſed by ignorance. Finallie, truth is no ſooner found out<lb/>
                 in ignorance, than a ſweet ſauor in a dunghill. And if they<lb/>
                 will allow men knowledge, and give them no leave to vſeit,<lb/>
                 men were much better be without it than have it. For it is,<lb/>
                     <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"> <quote source="Bible:Matthew" style="font-size:.75;">Matth.25.</quote></note>
                     <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"> <quote source="Bible:Matthew" style="font-size:.75;">Matth.5.</quote></note>
                     <note type="authorial" place="margin-right"> <quote source="Bible:Luke" style="font-size:.75;">Luke.8:</quote></note>
                 as to have a tallent, and to hide it under the earth; or to<lb/>
                 put a candle under a bushell: or as to have a ship, &amp; to let hir<lb/>
                 lie always in the docke: which thing how profitable it is, I<lb/>
                 can ſaie somewhat by experience.<lb/></p> 
           <p style="text-indent:3em;font-style;italic;">But hereof I need ſaie no more, for eerie man ſeeth that<lb/>
                 none can be happie who knoweth what felicitie me aneth.<lb/>
                 For what auaileth it to have riches, and not have ufe<lb/></p><!-- para continues on next page -->
              <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;">thereof ?</fw>
              <fw type="signature"><supplied reason="ommitted-in-original">A7r</supplied></fw>
              <pb/>
           
<!-- Page A7v transcribed and coded by Lauren Mercer under supervision of Kristen Abbott Bennett November 2021 -->     
           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-size:150%">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;">thereof? Trulie the heathen herein deſerued more commen-<lb/>
              dation than manie christians, for they ſpared no paine, no<lb/>
              coſt, nor trauell to atteine to knowledge. <persName type="hist">Pythagoras</persName> trauel-<lb/>
              led from <persName type="lit">Thamus</persName> to <placeName>Aegypt</placeName>, and afterwards into <placeName>Crete</placeName> and<lb/> 
              <placeName>Lacedæmonia</placeName>: and <persName type="hist">Plato</persName> out of <placeName>Athens</placeName> into <placeName>Italie</placeName> and <placeName>Ae-<lb/>
                 gypt</placeName>, and all to find out hidden ſecrets and knowledge: which<lb/> 
              when a man hath, he feemeth to be ſeparated from mortalitie.<lb/>
              For pretious ſtones, and all other creatures of what value ſo-<lb/>
              euer, are but counterfeits to this iewell: They are mortal,<lb/>
              corruptible, and inconstant; this is imortall, pure and cer-<lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:1em">teine. VVherfore if I haue ſearched and found out any good</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:2em">thing, that ignorance and time hath ſmothered, the</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:5em">ſame I commend vnto you: to whom though I</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:8em">owe all that I haue, yet am I bold to</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:11em">make other partakers with</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em">you in this poore</hi><lb/>
              <hi style="text-indent:18em">gift.</hi><lb/></p>
           <lb/>
           <signed style="text-indent:20em">Your louing coufen<lb/>
              <persName type="hist" style="font-style:italic;font-size:.75;text-indent:26em">Reg. Scot.</persName></signed>
           <fw type="signature"><supplied reason="ommitted-in-original">A7v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
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        <div type="dedicatoryEpistle">
                 <salute><hi style="text-align:center;font-size:200%;font-style:italic">To the right worſhipfull his louing friends,<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align:center;font-size:190%;">Maiſter Doƈtor Coldwell Deane of Ro-<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align:center;font-size:170%;font-style:italic">cheſter, and Maiſter Doƈtor Read-<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align:center;font-size:140%;">man Archdeacon of Can-<lb/></hi>
                 <hi style="text-align:center;font-size:140%;font-style:italic">turburie, &amp;c.<lb/></hi></salute>
           <p style="text-align:left;font-style:italic;">
              <hi style="decorInit;float:left;font-size:800%;padding:0.5rem;margin:0.2rem 1rem 0;">H</hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;font-size: 140%;font-style:bold">Auing found out two ſuch quill Ma-<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;">gistrates, as for direƈtion of indgement, and for or-<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;"> dering matters concerning instice in thus common<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;"> wealth (in my poore opinion) are verie ſingular<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;"> perſons, who (I hope) will accept of my good will,<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;">and examine my booke by their experience as vn-<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;">to whom the matter therein conteined dooth great-<lb/></hi>
              <hi style="text-indent:14em;">lie apperteine: I haue now againe conſidered of<lb/></hi>
              two other points: namelie, diuinitie and philoſophie, wherevpon the ground-<lb/>
              worke of my book is laid. Wherein although I know them to be verie ſuffi-<lb/>
              cientlie informed, yet dooth not the iudgement and cenſure of thoſe cauſes ſo<lb/>
              properlie apperteine tho them vs vnto you, whoſefame therein hath gotten pre-<lb/>
              eminence aboue all others that I know of your callings: and in that reſpeƈt I<lb/>
              am bold to ioine you with them, being all good neighbours togither in this<lb/>
              commonwelth, and louing friends vnto me. I doo not preſent this vnto you,<lb/>
              bicauſe it is meet for you; but for that you are meet for it (I meane) to iudge<lb/>
              vpon it, to defend it, and if need be to correƈt it; knowing that you haue lear-<lb/>
              ned of that graue counſeller <persName type="hist">Cato</persName>, not to ſhame or diſcountenance and bodie.<lb/>
              For if I thought you as readie, as able, to diſgrace me for mine inſufficiencie;<lb/>
              I ſhould not haue beene hastie (knowing your learning) to haue written vnto<lb/>
              you: but if I ſhould be abaſhed to write to you, I ſhould ſhew me ſelfe igno-<lb/>
              rant of your courteſie.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;font-style:italic;"> 
              I knowe mine owne weakeneſſe, which if it haue beene able to maninteine<lb/>
              this argument, the cauſe is the ſtronger.  Eloquent words may pleaſe the eares,<lb/>
              but ſufficient matter perſuadeth the hart. So as, if I exhibit wholſome drinke<lb/>
              (though it be ſmall) in a treene diſh with a faithfull hand, I hope it will bee<lb/>
              as well accepted, as ſtrong wine offered in a ſiluer bowle with a flattering<lb/>
              beart. And ſurelie it is a point of as great liberalitie to receiue a ſmall thing<lb/>
              thankefullie, as to giue and diſtribute great and costlie gifts bountifullie: for<lb/>
              there is more ſupplied with courteous anſwers t  an with rich rewards. The ty-<lb/></p><!-- para continues onto next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align:right;">rant</fw>
           <fw type="signature"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A8r</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
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           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-size:150%">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p style="font-style:italic;">rant <persName type="lit">Dionyſius</persName> was not ſo hated for his tyrannie, as for his churliſh and<lb/>
              ſtrange behauiour. Among the poore Iſraelites ſacrifices, <persName type="lit">God</persName> was ſatiſfied<lb/>
              with the tenth part of an Ephah of flower, ſo as it were fine and good. <persName type="lit">Chriſst</persName><lb/>
              liked well of the poore widowes mite, <persName type="hist">Lewis of France</persName> accepted a rape root<lb/>
              of clowniſh <persName type="hist">Conan</persName>, <persName type="hist">Cyrus</persName> vouchſafed to drinke a cup of cold water out of<lb/>
              the hand of poore <persName type="hist">Sinætes</persName>: and ſo it may pleaſe you to accept this ſimple booke<lb/>
              at my hands, which I faithfullie exhibit vnto you, not knowing your opinions<lb/>
              to meet with mine, but knowing your learning and iudgement to be able as<lb/>
              well to correct me where I ſpeake herein vnskilfullie, as others when they ſpeake<lb/>
              hereof maliciouſlie<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:3.5em;font-style:italic;">Some be ſuch dogs as they will barke at my writings, whether I mainteine<lb/>
              or refute this argument: as <persName type="hist">Diogenes</persName> ſnarled both at the Rhodians and at<lb/>
              the Lacedæmonians: at the one, bicauſe they were braue; at the other, bicauſe<lb/>
              they were not braue. <persName type="hist">Homer</persName> himſelfe could not auoid reprochfull ſpeaches. I am<lb/>
              ſure that they which neuer ſtudied to learne anie good thing, will ſtudie to find<lb/>
              <choice><sic>faultshereat</sic><corr>faults hereat</corr></choice>. I for my part feare not theſe wars, nor all the aduerſaries I haue;<lb/>
              were it not for certeine cowards, who (I knowe) will come behind my backe and<lb/> 
              bite me.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:4.5em;font-style:italic;">But now to the matter. My question is not (as manie fondlie ſuppoſe)<lb/>
              whether there be witches or naie: but whether they can doo ſuch miraculous<lb/>
              works as are imputed vnto them. Good <persName type="hist">Maister Deane</persName>, is it poſsible for a man<lb/>
              to breake his fast with you at <placeName>Rochester</placeName>, and to dine that day at <placeName>Durham</placeName> with<lb/>
              <persName type="hist">Maister Doctor Matthew</persName>; or can your enimie maime you, when the Ocean<lb/>
              ſea is betwixt you? What reall communitie is betwixt a ſpirit and a bodie?<lb/>
              May a ſpirituall bodie become temporall at his pleaſure? Or may a carnall bo-<lb/>
              die become inuiſible? Is it likelie that the liues of all Princes, magistrates, &amp;<lb/>
              ſubiects, ſhould depend vpon the will, or rather vpon the wiſh of a poore mali-<lb/>
              cious doting old foole; and that power exempted from the wiſe, the rich, the<lb/>
              learned, the godlie, &amp;c? Finallie, is it poſsible for man or woman to do anie of<lb/>
              thoſe miracles expreſſed in my booke, &amp; ſo constantlie reported by great clarks?<lb/>
              If you ſaie, no; then am I ſatisfied. If you ſaie that <persName type="lit">God</persName>, abſolutelie, or by<lb/>
              meanes can accompliſh all thoſe, and manie more, I go with you. But witches<lb/>
              may well ſaie they can doo theſe things, howbeit they cannot ſhew how they doo<lb/>
              them. If I for my part ſhould ſaie I could doo thoſe things, my verie aduer-<lb/>
              ſaries would ſaie that I lied.<lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:3.5em;font-style:italic;">O <persName type="hist">Maister Archdeacon</persName>, is it not pitie, that that which is ſaid to be doone<lb/>
              with the almightie power of the moſt high <persName type="lit">God</persName>, and by our ſauiour his onelie<lb/>
              ſonne <persName type="hist">Ieſus Christ</persName> our Lord, ſhould be referred to a baggage old womans nod<lb/></p> <!-- para continues on next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;font-style:italic;">or</fw>
           <fw type="signature" style="text-align;center;"><supplied reason="omitted-in-original">A8v</supplied></fw>
           <pb/>
           
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           <fw type="header" style="text-align:center;font-size:150%">The Epistle.</fw>
           <p><hi style="font-style:italic;">or wiſh, &amp; c? Good Sir, is it not one manifest kind of Idolatrie, for them that<lb/>
              labor and are laden, to come vnto witches to be refreſhed? If witches could<lb/>
              helpe whom they are ſaid to have made ſuke, I ſee no reaſon, but remedie might <lb/>
              as well be required at their hands, as a purſse demanded of him that hath ſtolne<lb/>
              it. But trulie it is manifold idolatrie, to aske that of a creature, which none<lb/>
              can giue but the <persName type="lit">Creator</persName>. The papist hath ſome colour of ſcripture to main-<lb/>
              teine his idoll of bread, but no Ieſuiticall distinction can couer the witchmon-<lb/>
              gers idolatrie in this behalfe. Alas, I am ſorie and aſhamed to ſee how ma-<lb/>
              nie die, that being ſaid to be bewitched, onlie ſeeke for magicall cures, whom<lb/>
              wholſome diet and good medicines would haue recouered. I dare aſſure you<lb/>
              both, that there would be none of theſe couſening kind of witches, did not<lb/>
              witchmongers mainteine them, followe them, and beleeue in them and their<lb/>
              oracles: whereby indeed all good learning and honest arts are ouerthrowne. <lb/>
              For theſe that most aduance their power, and mainteine the skill of theſe wit-<lb/>
              ches, vnderſtand no part thereof: and yet being manie times wiſe in other <lb/>
              matters, are made fooles by the moſt fooles in the world. <lb/></hi></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;font-style:italic;"> Me thinks theſe magicall phyſicians deale in the commonwelth, much like<lb/>
              as a certeine kind of Cynicall people doo in the church, whoſe ſeuere ſaiengs<lb/>
              are accompted among ſome ſuch oracles, as may not be doubted of; who in<lb/>
              ſtead of learning and authoritie (which they make contemptible) doo feed the <lb/>
              people with their owne deuiſes and imaginations, which they prefer before all<lb/>
              other diuinitie: and labouring to erect a church according to their owne fan-<lb/>
              ſies, wherein all order is condemned, and onelie their magicall words and cu-<lb/>
              rious directions aduanced, they would vtterlie ouerthrowe the true <orgName>Church</orgName>. <lb/>
              And euen as theſe inchanting <orgName>Paracelſians</orgName> abuſe the people, leading them<lb/>
              from the true order of phyſicke to their charmes: ſo doo theſe other (I ſaie) diſ-<lb/>
              ſuade from hearkening to learning and obedience, and whiſper in mens eares<lb/>
              to teach them their frierlike traditions. And of this ſect the cheefe author<lb/>
              at this time is one <persName type="hist">Browne</persName>, a fugitiue, a meet couer for ſuch a cup: as hereto-<lb/>
              fore the <orgName>Anabaptists</orgName>, the <orgName>Arrians</orgName>, and the Franciſcane friers. <lb/></p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;font-style:italic;">[indent] Trulie not onlie nature, being the foundation of all perfection; but alſo<lb/>
              ſcripture, being the mistreſſe and director thereof, and of all christianitie, is<lb/>
              beautified with knowledge and learning. For as nature without diſcipline<lb/>
              dooth naturallie incline vnto vanities, and as it were ſucke vp errors: ſo doth<lb/>
              the word, or rather the letter of the ſcripture, without vnderſtanding, not <lb/>
              onlie make vs deuoure errors, but yeeldeth vs vp to death &amp; destruction &amp; <lb/>
                  <note type="authorial" place="margin-right" style="font-style:.75;"><quote source="biblical:Rom.">Rom.2, 27.</quote></note>
                  <note type="authorial" place="margin-right" style="font-style:.75;"><quote source="biblical:2 Cor.">2.Cor.3, 6.</quote></note><lb/>
              therefore <persName type="lit"> [Paule] </persName> ſaith he was not a minister of the letter, but of the ſpirit. </p>
           <p style="text-indent:2em;font-style:italic;"> Thus I haue beene bold to deliuer vnto the world, and to you, thoſe ſimple<lb/></p><!-- para continues onto next page -->
           <fw type="catchword" style="text-align;right;"><hi style="font-style:italic;">notes,</hi></fw> 
           <fw type="signature"><hi style="font-style:italic;">B1<supplied reason="omitted-in-original">r</supplied></hi></fw>
           <pb/>

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  </text>
</TEI>
Scot_Witches_master_DH_A2r_to_B1r General Editor Kristen Abbott Bennett Transcriber and encoder Donald Halsing Transcriber and encoder Meeghan J. Brensahan Transcriber and encoder Gwendolyn Carpenter Transcriber and encoder Kimberly L. Chambers Transcriber and encoder Lilah E. Determan Transcriber and encoder Haley M. Hadge Transcriber and encoder Caroline M. Hawkes Transcriber and encoder Hilary B. Lincoln Transcriber and encoder Sage T. Lorenzo Transcriber and encoder Elinora B. Lynch Transcriber and encoder Lauren D. Mercer Transcriber and encoder Timothy J. Reed Transcriber and encoder Nicholas Q. Ribeiro

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TEI P5

The diſcouerie of vvitchcraft, Wherein the lewde dealing of witches and witchmongers is notablie detected, the knauerie of coniurors, the impietie of inchaun- tors, the follie of ſoothſaiers, the impudent falſ- hood of couſenors, the infidelitie of atheiſts, the peſtilent practiſes of Pythonists, the curioſitie of figurecaſters, the va- nitie of dreamers, the begger- lie art of Alcu- myſtrie, The abhomination of idolatrie, the hor- rible art of poisoning, the vertue and power of naturall magicke, and all the conueiances of Legierdemaine and iuggling are deciphered: and many other things opened, which haue long lien hidden, howbeit very necessarie to be knowne. Heerevnto is added a treatiſe vpon the nature and ſubſtance of ſpirits and diuels, & c: all latelie written by Reginald Scot Eſquire. I.Iohn.4,I. Beleeue not euerie ſpirit, but trie the ſpirites, whether they are of God; for manie falſe prophets are gone out into the world, & c. 1584. A1r
To the Honorable, mine eſpeciall good Lord, Sir Roger ManwoodKnight, Lord cheefe Baron of hir Maiesties Court of the Eſchequer]

I N SO MVCH as I know that your Lordship is by na- ture whollie incli- ned, and in purpoſe earneſtly bent to re- leeue the poor, and that not onlie with hoſpitalitie and al- mes, but by diuerſe other deuiſes and waies tending to their comfort, ha- uing (as it were) fra- med and ſet your ſelfe to the helpe and maintenance of their eſtate; as appeareth by your charge and trauell in that behalfe. Whereas alſo you haue a ſpeciall care for the ſupporting of their right, and redreſſing of their wrongs, as neither deſpiſing their calamitie, nor yet for- getting their complaint, ſeeking all meanes for their a- mendement, and for the reformation of their diſorders, euen as a verie father to the poore. Finallie, for that I am a poore member of that commonwelth, where your Lord- ſhip is a principall perſon; I thought this my trauell, in the behalfe of the poore, the aged, and the ſimple, might be

verie A2r The Epistle.

verie fitlie commended vnto you: for a weake houſe re- quireth a ſtrong ſtaie. In which reſpect I giue God thanks, that hath raiſed vp vnto me ſo mightie a freend for them as your Lordſhip is, who in our lawes haue ſuch know- ledge, in gouernment ſuch diſcretion, in theſe cauſes ſuch experience, and in the commonwealth ſuch authoritie; And neuertheleſſe vouchſafe to deſcend to the confidera- tion of theſe baſe and interior matters, which miniſter more care and trouble, than worldlie ellimination.

And in ſomuch as your Lordſhip knoweth, or rather exerciſeth the office of a judge, whoſe part it is to heare with courteſie, and to determine with equitie; it cannot but be apparent vnto you, that when puniſhment excee- deth the fault, it is rather to be thought vengeance than correction. In which reſpect I knowe you ſpend more time and trauell in the conuerſion and reformation, than in the ſubuerſion & confuſion of offenders, as being well pleaſed to augment your owne priuate paines, to the end you may diminiſh their publikeſmart. For in truth, that commonwealth remaineth in wofull ſtate, where fetters and halters beare more ſwaie than mercie and due com- paſſion.

Howbeit, it is naturall to vnnaturall people, and pecu- liar vnto witchmongers, to purſue the poore, to accuſe the ſimple, and to kill the innocent; ſupplieng in rigor and malice towards others, that which they themſelues want in proofe and diſcretion, or the other in offenſe or occa- ſion. But as a cruell hart and an honeſt mind doo ſeldome meete and feed togither in a diſh; ſo a diſcreet and merci- full migiſtrate, and a happie commonwealth cannot be ſeparated aſunder. How much then are we bound to God, who hath giuen vs a Queene, that of iuſtice is not only the very perfect image & paterne; but alſo of mercie & clemencie (vnder God) the meere fountaine & bodie it ſelfe? In ſomuch as they which hunt moſt after bloud in

theſe A2v The Epistle.

theſe daies, haue leaſt authoritie to ſhed it. Moreouer, fith I ſee that in caſes where lenitie might be noiſome, & puniſhment wholeſome to the commonwealth; there no reſpect of perſon can moue you, no authoritie can ab- baſh you, no feare, no threts can daunt you in performing the dutie of iuſtice.

In that reſpect againe I find your Lordſhip a fit perſon, to iudge and looke vpon this preſent treatiſe. Wherein I will bring before you, as it were to the barre, two forts of moſt arrogant and wicked people, the firſt challenging to themſelues, the ſecond attributing vnto others, that power which onelie apperteineth to God,awho onelie is 01 a Apoc. 4, 11. the Creator of all things,bwho onelie ſearcheth the hart 02 b Rom. 8. Acts. 5. Apoc. 2. and reines, who oneliecknoweth our imaginations and thoughts, who oneliedopeneth all ſecrets, whoeonelie 03 c Luke. 16 worketh great wonders, who onelie hath powerfto raiſe 04 d Dan. 2. & 28, & 47. vp & caſt downe; who onelie maketh thunder, lightning,05 e Pſalm. 72. & 136. Ier. 5. raine, tempeſts, and reſtraineth them at his pleaſure; who oneliegſendeth life and death, ſickneſſe & health, wealth 06 f Iob. 5. & 36 Sam. 12. 1. Reg. 8. 2 Reg. 3. Iſaie. 5. Zach. 10. & 14. Amos. 4. 7. and wo; who neither giueth nor lendeth hishglorie to anie creature.

And therefore, that which greeueth me to the bot- tome of my hart, is, that theſe witchmongers cannot be content, to wreſt out of Gods hand his almightie power, and keepe it themſelues, or leaue it with a witch: but that,07 g Iob. 1. when by drift of argument they are made to laie downe08 h Iſaie. 42, 8. the bucklers, they yeeld them vp to the diuell, or at the leaſt praie aid of him, as though the raines of all mens liues and actions were committed into his hand; and that he ſat at the ſterne, to guide and direct the courſe of the whole world, imputing vnto him power and abilitie inough to doo as great things, and as ſtrange miracles as euer Chriſt did.

But the doctors of this ſupernaturall doctrine ſaie ſom- times, that the witch doth all theſe things by virtue of hir

charmes; A. iij.r The Epistle.

charmes; ſometimes that a ſpirituall, ſometimes that a corporall diuell doth accompliſh it; ſometimes they ſaie that which he himſelfe hath wrought; ſometimes that the diuell ſeemeth to doo that by compulſion, which he doth moſt willinglie. Finallie, the writers herevpon are ſo eloquent, and full of varietie; that ſometimes they write that the diuell dooth all this by Gods permiſſion onelie; ſometimes by his licence, ſometimes by his appointment: ſo as (in effect and truth) not the diuell, but the high and mightie king of kings, and Lord of hoſts, euen God him- ſelle, ſhould this waie be made obedient and feruile to obeie and performe the will & commandement of a ma- licious old witch, and miraculouſlie to anſwere hir appe- tite, as well in euerie trifling vanitie, as in moſt horrible executions; as the reuenger of a doting old womans ima- gined wrongs, to the deſtruction of manie innocent chil- dren, and as a ſupporter of hir paſſions, to the vndoing of manie a poore ſoule. And I ſee not, but a witch may as well inchant, when ſhe will; as a lier may lie when he liſt: and ſo ſhould we poſſeſſe nothing, but by a witches li- cence and permiſſion.

And now forſooth it is brought to this point, that all di- uels, which were woont to be ſpirituall, may at their plea- ſure become corporall, and ſo ſhew themſelues familiar- lie to witches and coniurors, and to none other, and by them onlie may be made tame, and kept in a box, &c. So as a malicious old woman may command hir diuell to plague hir neighbo[rs] and he is afflicted in manner and forme as ſhe deſireth. But then commeth another witch, and ſhe biddeth hir diuell helpe, and he healeth the ſame pa[rt]ie. So as they make it a kingdome diuided in itſelfe, and therefore I truſt it will not long endure, but will ſhort- lie be ouerthrowne, according to the words of our Sa- uior, Omne regnum in ſe diuiſum deſolabitur, Euerie king-

dome A3v The Epistle.

dome diuided in it ſelfe ſhalbe deſolate.

And although ſome ſaie that the diuell is the witches inſtrument, to bring hir purpoſes and practiſes to paſſe : yet others ſaie thatſhe is his inſtrument, to execute his pleaſure in anie thing, and therefore to be executed. But then (me thinks) ſhe ſhould be iniuriouſlie dealt withall, and put to death for anothers offenſe: for actions are not iudged by inſtrumentall cauſes; neither dooth the end and purpoſe of that which is done, depend vpon the meane inſtrument. Finallie, if the witch doo it not, why ſhould the witch die for it? But they ſaie that witches are perſuaded, and thinke, that they doo indeed thoſe miſ- cheefs; and haue a will to performe that which the diuell committeth : and that therefore they are worthie to die. By which reaſon euerie one ſhould be executed, that wi- ſheth euill to his neighbor, &c. But if the will ſhould be puniſhed by man, according to the offenſe againſt God, we ſhould be driuen by thouſands at once to the ſlaugh- terhouſe or butcherie. For whoſoeuer loatheth corre-09 Prouerb. 5. ction ſhall die. And who ſhould eſcape execution, if this lothſomneſſe (I ſaie) ſhould extend to death by the ciuill lawes. Alſo the reward of ſinne is death. Howbeit, eue- rie one that ſinneth,is not to be put to death by the magi- ſtrate. But (my Lord) it ſhalbe proued in my booke, and your Lordſhip ſhall trie it to be true, as well here at home in your natiue countrie,as alſo abrode in your ſeuerall cir- cuits, that(beſides them that be venefice, which are plaine poiſoners there will be found among our witches one- lie two ſorts; the one ſort being ſuch by imputation,as ſo thought of by others (and theſe are abuſed, and not abu- ſors) the other by acceptation, as being willingſo to be accompted (and theſe be meere couſenors.)

Caluinetreating of theſe magicians, calleth them10 Instit lib. 5.ca.8. ſect6. item upon Deut.cap.18. couſenors, ſaieng that they vſe their iuggling knacks one- lie to amaſe or abuſe the people; or elſe for fame: but he

might A.iiij.r The Epistle.

11 Lib. de lamiis,pag. 5. might rather haue ſaid for gaine. Eraſtus himſelfe, be- ing a principall writer in the behalfe of witches omnipo- tencie, is forced to confeſſe, that theſe Greeke words, μαλία, μαΓλαλία, φαρμαηία are moſt commonlie put for illuſion, falſe packing, couſenage, fraud, knauerie and de- ceipt: and is further driven to faie, that in ancient time, the learned were not ſo blockiſh, as not to ſee that the promiſes of magicians and inchanters were falſe, and no- thing elſe but knauerie, couſenage, and old wiues fables; and yet defendeth he their flieng in the aire, their tranf- ferring of corne or graſſe from one feeld to another, &c.

But as Eraſtus diſagreeth herein with himſelfe and his freends: ſo is there no agreement among anie of thoſe writers, but onlie in cruelties, abſurdeties, and impoſſibili- ties. And theſe (my Lord) that fall into ſo manifeſt con- tradictions, and into ſuch abſurd aſſeuerations, are not of the inferior ſort of writers; neither are they all papiſts, but men of ſuch accompt, as whole names giue more credit to their cauſe, than their writings. In whoſe behalf I am ſorie, and partlie for reuerence ſupreſſe their fondeſt er- rors and fowleſt abſurdeties; dealing ſpeciallie with them 12 aIſaie. 59, 7. Rom. 3, 15. that moſt content in crueltie,a whoſe feete are ſwift 13 bEccl. 27, 5. to ſhed bloud, ſtriuing (as b Ieſus the ſonne of Sirach faith) 14 cProu. 1, 16. and haſting (as c Salomon the ſonne of Dauid faith) to 15 dIer. 2, 34. powre out the bloud of the innocent; whoſe heat againſt 16 ePſ. 139, 15. Eſai. 33, 15. these poore wretches cannot be allaied with anie other liquor than bloud. And therefore I feare thatd vnder their wings will be found the bloud of the foules of the poore, at that daie, when the Lord ſhall ſaie;e Depart from me ye bloudthirſtie men.

And bicauſe I know your Lordſhip will take no coun- ſell againſt innocent bloud, but rather ſupreſſe them that ſeeke to embrew their hands therein, I haue made choiſe to open their caſe vnto you, and to laie their miſe- rable calamatie before your feete: following herein the

aduiſe A.4.v The Epistle.

aduiſe of that learned man Brentius,who faith; Si quis 17 In epistole ad Io Wier. Admonnuerit magistratum, ne in miſer as illas mulierculas ſa- uiat, eum ego arbitror diuinitús excitatum; that is, If anie admoniſh the magiſtrate not to deale too hardlie with theſe miſerable wretches, that are called witches, I thinke him a good inſtrument raiſed vp for this purpoſe by God himſelſe.

But it will perchance beſaid by witchmongers;to wit, by ſuch as attribute to witches the power which apper- teineth to God onelie, that I haue made choiſe of your Lordſhip to be a patrone to this my booke; bicauſe I think you fauour mine opinions, and by that meanes may the more freelie publiſh anie error or conceipt of mine owne; which ſhould rather be warranted by your Lordſhip au- thoritie, than by the word of God , or by ſufficient argu- ment. But I proteſt the contrarie, and by theſe preſents I renounce all proteƈtion, and deſpiſe all freendſhip that might ſerue to helpe towards the ſuppreſſing or ſupplan- ting of truth: knowing alſo that your Lordſhip is farre from allowing anie iniure done vnto man; much more an enimie to them that go about to diſhonor God , or to embezill the title of his immortall glorie. But bicauſe I know you to be perſpicuous, and able to ​​ſee downe into the depth and bottome of cauſes, and are not to be car- ried awaie with the vaine perſuaſion or ſuperſtition either of man, cuſtome, time, or multitude, but mooued with the authortitie of truth onlie: I craue your countenance here- in, euen ſo farre foorth, and no further, than the lawe of God ,the lawe of nature, the lawe of this land, and the rule of reaſon ſhall require. Neither doo I treat for theſe poore people anie otherwiſe, but ſo, and with one hand you may ſuſtaine the good, and with the other ſuppreſſe the euill: wherein you ſhalbe thought a father to orphans, and ad- uocate to widowes, a guide to the blind, a ſtaie to the lame, a comfort &countenance to the honeſt,a ſcourge

and A5r The Epistle.

and terror to the wicked.

Thus farre I haue beene bold to vſe your Lordſhips pa- tience, being offended with myſelfe, that I could not in breuitie vtter ſuch matter as I haue deliuered amplie: whereby (I confeſſe) occaſion of tediouſnes might be mi- niſtred, were it not that your great grauitie ioined with your ſingular conſtancie in reading and iudging be means of the contrarie. And I wiſh euen with all my hart, that I could make people conceiue the ſubſtance of my writing, and not to miſconſtrue anie part of my meaning. Then doubtles would I perſuade my ſelfe, that the companie of witchmongers, &c: being once decreaſed, the number alſo of witches, amp;c: would ſoone be diminiſhed. But true be the words of the Poet,

Haudquaquam poteris ſortirier omnia ſolus, Námque alys diui bello pollere dederunt, Huic ſaltandi artem, voce huic cytharáque canendi: Rurſum alyinſeruit ſagax in pectore magnus Iupiter ingenium, &c.

And therefore as doubtfull to preuaile by perſuading, though I haue reaſon and common ſenſe on my ſide; I reſt vpon earneſt wiſhing; namelie, to all people an abſo- lute truſt in God the creator, and not in creatures, which is to make fleſh our arme: that God may haue his due honor, which by the vndutifulnes of manie is turned into diſhonor, and leſſ cauſe of offenſe and er- rour giuen by common receiued euill ex- ample. And to your Lordſhip I wiſh, as increaſe of honour, ſo con- tinuance of good health, and happie daies.

Your Lordſhips to be commanded Reginald Scot. A5v
To the right worſhipfull Sir Thomas Scot Knight, &c.

S ir, I ſee among other maleƒaƈtors manie poore old women conuented be- fore you for working of miracles, other wiſe called witchcraft, and therefore I thought you alſo a meet perſon to whom I might cōmmend my booke. And here I haue occaſion to ſpeake of your ſincere adminiſtration of iustice, and of your dexteritie, diſcretion, charge, and trauell emploied in that behalfe, wherof I am ocu- latus testis. Howbeit I had rather refer the reader to com- mon fame, and their owne eies and eares to be ſatisfied; than to ſend them to a Stationers shop, where manie times lies are vendible, and truth contemptible. For I being of your houſe, of your name, & of your bloud; my foot being vnder your ta- ble, my hand in your dish, or rather in your purſſe, might bee thought to flatter you in that, wherein (I knowe) I should rather offend you than pleaſe you. And what need I currie fa- uour with my moſt aſſured friend? And if I should onelie pub- lish thoſe vertues (though they be manie) which give me ſpe- ciall occaſion to exhibit this my travell unto you, I should doo as a painter, that deſcribeth the foot of a notable perſonage, and leaveth all the beſt features in his bodie untouched.

I therefore (at this time) doo onelie deſire you to conſider of my report, concerning the evidence that is commonlie brought before you againſt them. See firſt whether the evi- dence be not friuolous, & whether the prooƒs brought against them be not incredible, conſiſting of gheſſes, preſumptions, & impoſſibilities contrarie to reaſon, ſcripture, and nature. See alſo what perſons complaine vpon them, whether they be not of the baſeſt,the unwiſeſt,amp; most faithles kind of people. Alſo

may A6R The Epistle.

may it pleaſe you to waie what accuſations and crimes they laie to their charge, namelie: She was at my houſse of late she would haue had a pot of milke, she departed in a chafe bicauſe she had it not, she railed, she curſſed, she mumbled and whiſ- pered, and finallie she ſaid she would be euen with me: and ſoone after my child, my cow, my ſow, or my pullet died, or was ſtrangelie taken. Naie (if it pleaſe your vvorship) I haue further proofe: I was with a wiſe woman, and she told me I had an ill neighbour, & that she would come to my houſe yer it were long, and ſo did she; and that she had a marke a- boue hir waste, & ſo had she: and God forgiue me, my ſtomach hath gone againſt hir a great while. Hir mother before hir was counted a witch, she hath beene beaten and ſcratched by the face till bloud was drawne upon hir, bicauſse she hath beene ſuſpected, & afterwards ſome of thoſe perſons were ſaid to amend. Theſse are the certeinties that I heare in their eui- dences.

Note alſo how eaſilie they may be brought to confeſſe that which they neuer did, nor lieth in the power of man to doo: and then ſee whether I haue cauſe to write as I doo. Further, if you shall ſee that infidelitie, poperie, and manie other ma- nifest hereſies be backed and shouldered, and their profeſſors animated and hartened, by yeelding to creatures ſuch infinit power as is wreſted out of Gods hand, and attributed to wit- ches: finallie, if you shall perceiue that I haue faithfullie and trulie deliuered and ſet downe the condition and ſtate of the witch, and alſo of the witchmonger, and have confuted by reaſon and lawe, and by the word of God it ſelfe, all mine ad- uerſaries obiections and arguments: then let me haue your countenance againſt them that maliciouſie oppoſe themſelues against me.

My greateſt aduerſaries are yoong ignorance and old cu- ſtome. For what follie ſoeuer tract of time hath fostered, it is

ſo A6r The Epistle.

ſo ſuperftitiouſlie purſued of ſome, as though no error could be acquainted with custome. But if the lawe of nations would iodine with ſuch custome, to the maintenance of ignorance, and to the ſuppreſſing of knowledge; the ciuileſt countrie in the world would ſoone become barbarous, &c. For as know- ledge and time diſcouereth errors, ſo dooth ſuperſtition and ignorance in time breed them. And concerning the opini- ons of ſuch, as wish that ignorance should rather be maintei- ned, than knowledge buſilie ſearched for, bicauſe thereby of- fenſe may grow : I anſwer, that we are commanded by Chriſt 18 John.5. 19 Prou.15,I. himſelfe to ſearch for knowledge : for it is the kings honour (as Salmon faith) to ſearch out a thing.

Aristotle ſaid to Alexander, that a mind well furnished was more beautiful than a bodie richlie araied. What can be more odious to man, or offenſisue to God, than ignorance: for through ignorance the I ewes did put Chriſt to death. 20 Acts.3. 21 Prouerbs.9. Which ignorance whoſoeuer forſaketh, is promiſed life euer- lasting: and therefore among Christians it should be abhor- red aboue all other things. For even as when we wrestle in the darke, we tumble in the mire,&c. ſo when we ſee not the truth, we wallow in errors. A blind man may ſeeke long in the riches yer he find a needle; and as ſoone is a doubt diſcauſſed by ignorance. Finallie, truth is no ſooner found out in ignorance, than a ſweet ſauor in a dunghill. And if they will allow men knowledge, and give them no leave to vſeit, men were much better be without it than have it. For it is, 22 Matth.25. 23 Matth.5. 24 Luke.8: as to have a tallent, and to hide it under the earth; or to put a candle under a bushell: or as to have a ship, & to let hir lie always in the docke: which thing how profitable it is, I can ſaie somewhat by experience.

But hereof I need ſaie no more, for eerie man ſeeth that none can be happie who knoweth what felicitie me aneth. For what auaileth it to have riches, and not have ufe

thereof ? A7r The Epistle.

thereof? Trulie the heathen herein deſerued more commen- dation than manie christians, for they ſpared no paine, no coſt, nor trauell to atteine to knowledge. Pythagoras trauel- led from Thamus to Aegypt, and afterwards into Crete and Lacedæmonia: and Plato out of Athens into Italie and Ae- gypt, and all to find out hidden ſecrets and knowledge: which when a man hath, he feemeth to be ſeparated from mortalitie. For pretious ſtones, and all other creatures of what value ſo- euer, are but counterfeits to this iewell: They are mortal, corruptible, and inconstant; this is imortall, pure and cer- teine. VVherfore if I haue ſearched and found out any good thing, that ignorance and time hath ſmothered, the ſame I commend vnto you: to whom though I owe all that I haue, yet am I bold to make other partakers with you in this poore gift.

Your louing coufen Reg. Scot. A7v
To the right worſhipfull his louing friends, Maiſter Doƈtor Coldwell Deane of Ro- cheſter, and Maiſter Doƈtor Read- man Archdeacon of Can- turburie, &c.

H Auing found out two ſuch quill Ma- gistrates, as for direƈtion of indgement, and for or- dering matters concerning instice in thus common wealth (in my poore opinion) are verie ſingular perſons, who (I hope) will accept of my good will, and examine my booke by their experience as vn- to whom the matter therein conteined dooth great- lie apperteine: I haue now againe conſidered of two other points: namelie, diuinitie and philoſophie, wherevpon the ground- worke of my book is laid. Wherein although I know them to be verie ſuffi- cientlie informed, yet dooth not the iudgement and cenſure of thoſe cauſes ſo properlie apperteine tho them vs vnto you, whoſefame therein hath gotten pre- eminence aboue all others that I know of your callings: and in that reſpeƈt I am bold to ioine you with them, being all good neighbours togither in this commonwelth, and louing friends vnto me. I doo not preſent this vnto you, bicauſe it is meet for you; but for that you are meet for it (I meane) to iudge vpon it, to defend it, and if need be to correƈt it; knowing that you haue lear- ned of that graue counſeller Cato, not to ſhame or diſcountenance and bodie. For if I thought you as readie, as able, to diſgrace me for mine inſufficiencie; I ſhould not haue beene hastie (knowing your learning) to haue written vnto you: but if I ſhould be abaſhed to write to you, I ſhould ſhew me ſelfe igno- rant of your courteſie.

I knowe mine owne weakeneſſe, which if it haue beene able to maninteine this argument, the cauſe is the ſtronger. Eloquent words may pleaſe the eares, but ſufficient matter perſuadeth the hart. So as, if I exhibit wholſome drinke (though it be ſmall) in a treene diſh with a faithfull hand, I hope it will bee as well accepted, as ſtrong wine offered in a ſiluer bowle with a flattering beart. And ſurelie it is a point of as great liberalitie to receiue a ſmall thing thankefullie, as to giue and diſtribute great and costlie gifts bountifullie: for there is more ſupplied with courteous anſwers t an with rich rewards. The ty-

rant A8r The Epistle.

rant Dionyſius was not ſo hated for his tyrannie, as for his churliſh and ſtrange behauiour. Among the poore Iſraelites ſacrifices, God was ſatiſfied with the tenth part of an Ephah of flower, ſo as it were fine and good. Chriſst liked well of the poore widowes mite, Lewis of France accepted a rape root of clowniſh Conan, Cyrus vouchſafed to drinke a cup of cold water out of the hand of poore Sinætes: and ſo it may pleaſe you to accept this ſimple booke at my hands, which I faithfullie exhibit vnto you, not knowing your opinions to meet with mine, but knowing your learning and iudgement to be able as well to correct me where I ſpeake herein vnskilfullie, as others when they ſpeake hereof maliciouſlie

Some be ſuch dogs as they will barke at my writings, whether I mainteine or refute this argument: as Diogenes ſnarled both at the Rhodians and at the Lacedæmonians: at the one, bicauſe they were braue; at the other, bicauſe they were not braue. Homer himſelfe could not auoid reprochfull ſpeaches. I am ſure that they which neuer ſtudied to learne anie good thing, will ſtudie to find faultshereat faults hereat . I for my part feare not theſe wars, nor all the aduerſaries I haue; were it not for certeine cowards, who (I knowe) will come behind my backe and bite me.

But now to the matter. My question is not (as manie fondlie ſuppoſe) whether there be witches or naie: but whether they can doo ſuch miraculous works as are imputed vnto them. Good Maister Deane, is it poſsible for a man to breake his fast with you at Rochester, and to dine that day at Durham with Maister Doctor Matthew; or can your enimie maime you, when the Ocean ſea is betwixt you? What reall communitie is betwixt a ſpirit and a bodie? May a ſpirituall bodie become temporall at his pleaſure? Or may a carnall bo- die become inuiſible? Is it likelie that the liues of all Princes, magistrates, & ſubiects, ſhould depend vpon the will, or rather vpon the wiſh of a poore mali- cious doting old foole; and that power exempted from the wiſe, the rich, the learned, the godlie, &c? Finallie, is it poſsible for man or woman to do anie of thoſe miracles expreſſed in my booke, & ſo constantlie reported by great clarks? If you ſaie, no; then am I ſatisfied. If you ſaie that God, abſolutelie, or by meanes can accompliſh all thoſe, and manie more, I go with you. But witches may well ſaie they can doo theſe things, howbeit they cannot ſhew how they doo them. If I for my part ſhould ſaie I could doo thoſe things, my verie aduer- ſaries would ſaie that I lied.

O Maister Archdeacon, is it not pitie, that that which is ſaid to be doone with the almightie power of the moſt high God, and by our ſauiour his onelie ſonne Ieſus Christ our Lord, ſhould be referred to a baggage old womans nod

or A8v The Epistle.

or wiſh, & c? Good Sir, is it not one manifest kind of Idolatrie, for them that labor and are laden, to come vnto witches to be refreſhed? If witches could helpe whom they are ſaid to have made ſuke, I ſee no reaſon, but remedie might as well be required at their hands, as a purſse demanded of him that hath ſtolne it. But trulie it is manifold idolatrie, to aske that of a creature, which none can giue but the Creator. The papist hath ſome colour of ſcripture to main- teine his idoll of bread, but no Ieſuiticall distinction can couer the witchmon- gers idolatrie in this behalfe. Alas, I am ſorie and aſhamed to ſee how ma- nie die, that being ſaid to be bewitched, onlie ſeeke for magicall cures, whom wholſome diet and good medicines would haue recouered. I dare aſſure you both, that there would be none of theſe couſening kind of witches, did not witchmongers mainteine them, followe them, and beleeue in them and their oracles: whereby indeed all good learning and honest arts are ouerthrowne. For theſe that most aduance their power, and mainteine the skill of theſe wit- ches, vnderſtand no part thereof: and yet being manie times wiſe in other matters, are made fooles by the moſt fooles in the world.

Me thinks theſe magicall phyſicians deale in the commonwelth, much like as a certeine kind of Cynicall people doo in the church, whoſe ſeuere ſaiengs are accompted among ſome ſuch oracles, as may not be doubted of; who in ſtead of learning and authoritie (which they make contemptible) doo feed the people with their owne deuiſes and imaginations, which they prefer before all other diuinitie: and labouring to erect a church according to their owne fan- ſies, wherein all order is condemned, and onelie their magicall words and cu- rious directions aduanced, they would vtterlie ouerthrowe the true Church. And euen as theſe inchanting Paracelſians abuſe the people, leading them from the true order of phyſicke to their charmes: ſo doo theſe other (I ſaie) diſ- ſuade from hearkening to learning and obedience, and whiſper in mens eares to teach them their frierlike traditions. And of this ſect the cheefe author at this time is one Browne, a fugitiue, a meet couer for ſuch a cup: as hereto- fore the Anabaptists, the Arrians, and the Franciſcane friers.

[indent] Trulie not onlie nature, being the foundation of all perfection; but alſo ſcripture, being the mistreſſe and director thereof, and of all christianitie, is beautified with knowledge and learning. For as nature without diſcipline dooth naturallie incline vnto vanities, and as it were ſucke vp errors: ſo doth the word, or rather the letter of the ſcripture, without vnderſtanding, not onlie make vs deuoure errors, but yeeldeth vs vp to death & destruction & 25 Rom.2, 27. 26 2.Cor.3, 6. therefore [Paule] ſaith he was not a minister of the letter, but of the ſpirit.

Thus I haue beene bold to deliuer vnto the world, and to you, thoſe ſimple

notes, B1r

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Scot_Witches_master_DH_A2r_to_B1r General Editor Kristen Abbott Bennett Transcriber and encoder Donald Halsing Transcriber and encoder Meeghan J. Brensahan Transcriber and encoder Gwendolyn Carpenter Transcriber and encoder Kimberly L. Chambers Transcriber and encoder Lilah E. Determan Transcriber and encoder Haley M. Hadge Transcriber and encoder Caroline M. Hawkes Transcriber and encoder Hilary B. Lincoln Transcriber and encoder Sage T. Lorenzo Transcriber and encoder Elinora B. Lynch Transcriber and encoder Lauren D. Mercer Transcriber and encoder Timothy J. Reed Transcriber and encoder Nicholas Q. Ribeiro

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STC 21864

TEI P5

The diſcouerie of vvitchcraft, Wherein the lewde dealing of witches and witchmongers is notablie detected, the knauerie of coniurors, the impietie of inchaun- tors, the follie of ſoothſaiers, the impudent falſ- hood of couſenors, the infidelitie of atheiſts, the peſtilent practiſes of Pythonists, the curioſitie of figurecaſters, the va- nitie of dreamers, the begger- lie art of Alcu- myſtrie, The abhomination of idolatrie, the hor- rible art of poisoning, the vertue and power of naturall magicke, and all the conueiances of Legierdemaine and iuggling are deciphered: and many other things opened, which haue long lien hidden, howbeit very necessarie to be knowne. Heerevnto is added a treatiſe vpon the nature and ſubſtance of ſpirits and diuels, & c: all latelie written by Reginald Scot Eſquire. I.Iohn.4,I. Beleeue not euerie ſpirit, but trie the ſpirites, whether they are of God; for manie falſe prophets are gone out into the world, & c. 1584. A1r
To the Honorable, mine eſpeciall good Lord, Sir Roger ManwoodKnight, Lord cheefe Baron of hir Maiesties Court of the Eſchequer]

I N SO MVCH as I know that your Lordship is by na- ture whollie incli- ned, and in purpoſe earneſtly bent to re- leeue the poor, and that not onlie with hoſpitalitie and al- mes, but by diuerſe other deuiſes and waies tending to their comfort, ha- uing (as it were) fra- med and ſet your ſelfe to the helpe and maintenance of their eſtate; as appeareth by your charge and trauell in that behalfe. Whereas alſo you haue a ſpeciall care for the ſupporting of their right, and redreſſing of their wrongs, as neither deſpiſing their calamitie, nor yet for- getting their complaint, ſeeking all meanes for their a- mendement, and for the reformation of their diſorders, euen as a verie father to the poore. Finallie, for that I am a poore member of that commonwelth, where your Lord- ſhip is a principall perſon; I thought this my trauell, in the behalfe of the poore, the aged, and the ſimple, might be

verie A2r The Epistle.

verie fitlie commended vnto you: for a weake houſe re- quireth a ſtrong ſtaie. In which reſpect I giue God thanks, that hath raiſed vp vnto me ſo mightie a freend for them as your Lordſhip is, who in our lawes haue ſuch know- ledge, in gouernment ſuch diſcretion, in theſe cauſes ſuch experience, and in the commonwealth ſuch authoritie; And neuertheleſſe vouchſafe to deſcend to the confidera- tion of theſe baſe and interior matters, which miniſter more care and trouble, than worldlie ellimination.

And in ſomuch as your Lordſhip knoweth, or rather exerciſeth the office of a judge, whoſe part it is to heare with courteſie, and to determine with equitie; it cannot but be apparent vnto you, that when puniſhment excee- deth the fault, it is rather to be thought vengeance than correction. In which reſpect I knowe you ſpend more time and trauell in the conuerſion and reformation, than in the ſubuerſion & confuſion of offenders, as being well pleaſed to augment your owne priuate paines, to the end you may diminiſh their publikeſmart. For in truth, that commonwealth remaineth in wofull ſtate, where fetters and halters beare more ſwaie than mercie and due com- paſſion.

Howbeit, it is naturall to vnnaturall people, and pecu- liar vnto witchmongers, to purſue the poore, to accuſe the ſimple, and to kill the innocent; ſupplieng in rigor and malice towards others, that which they themſelues want in proofe and diſcretion, or the other in offenſe or occa- ſion. But as a cruell hart and an honeſt mind doo ſeldome meete and feed togither in a diſh; ſo a diſcreet and merci- full migiſtrate, and a happie commonwealth cannot be ſeparated aſunder. How much then are we bound to God, who hath giuen vs a Queene, that of iuſtice is not only the very perfect image & paterne; but alſo of mercie & clemencie (vnder God) the meere fountaine & bodie it ſelfe? In ſomuch as they which hunt moſt after bloud in

theſe A2v The Epistle.

theſe daies, haue leaſt authoritie to ſhed it. Moreouer, fith I ſee that in caſes where lenitie might be noiſome, & puniſhment wholeſome to the commonwealth; there no reſpect of perſon can moue you, no authoritie can ab- baſh you, no feare, no threts can daunt you in performing the dutie of iuſtice.

In that reſpect againe I find your Lordſhip a fit perſon, to iudge and looke vpon this preſent treatiſe. Wherein I will bring before you, as it were to the barre, two forts of moſt arrogant and wicked people, the firſt challenging to themſelues, the ſecond attributing vnto others, that power which onelie apperteineth to God,awho onelie is a Apoc. 4, 11. the Creator of all things,bwho onelie ſearcheth the hart b Rom. 8. Acts. 5. Apoc. 2. and reines, who oneliecknoweth our imaginations and thoughts, who oneliedopeneth all ſecrets, whoeonelie c Luke. 16 worketh great wonders, who onelie hath powerfto raiſe d Dan. 2. & 28, & 47. vp & caſt downe; who onelie maketh thunder, lightning, e Pſalm. 72. & 136. Ier. 5. raine, tempeſts, and reſtraineth them at his pleaſure; who oneliegſendeth life and death, ſickneſſe & health, wealth f Iob. 5. & 36 Sam. 12. 1. Reg. 8. 2 Reg. 3. Iſaie. 5. Zach. 10. & 14. Amos. 4. 7. and wo; who neither giueth nor lendeth hishglorie to anie creature.

And therefore, that which greeueth me to the bot- tome of my hart, is, that theſe witchmongers cannot be content, to wreſt out of Gods hand his almightie power, and keepe it themſelues, or leaue it with a witch: but that, g Iob. 1. when by drift of argument they are made to laie downe h Iſaie. 42, 8. the bucklers, they yeeld them vp to the diuell, or at the leaſt praie aid of him, as though the raines of all mens liues and actions were committed into his hand; and that he ſat at the ſterne, to guide and direct the courſe of the whole world, imputing vnto him power and abilitie inough to doo as great things, and as ſtrange miracles as euer Chriſt did.

But the doctors of this ſupernaturall doctrine ſaie ſom- times, that the witch doth all theſe things by virtue of hir

charmes; A. iij.r The Epistle.

charmes; ſometimes that a ſpirituall, ſometimes that a corporall diuell doth accompliſh it; ſometimes they ſaie that which he himſelfe hath wrought; ſometimes that the diuell ſeemeth to doo that by compulſion, which he doth moſt willinglie. Finallie, the writers herevpon are ſo eloquent, and full of varietie; that ſometimes they write that the diuell dooth all this by Gods permiſſion onelie; ſometimes by his licence, ſometimes by his appointment: ſo as (in effect and truth) not the diuell, but the high and mightie king of kings, and Lord of hoſts, euen God him- ſelle, ſhould this waie be made obedient and feruile to obeie and performe the will & commandement of a ma- licious old witch, and miraculouſlie to anſwere hir appe- tite, as well in euerie trifling vanitie, as in moſt horrible executions; as the reuenger of a doting old womans ima- gined wrongs, to the deſtruction of manie innocent chil- dren, and as a ſupporter of hir paſſions, to the vndoing of manie a poore ſoule. And I ſee not, but a witch may as well inchant, when ſhe will; as a lier may lie when he liſt: and ſo ſhould we poſſeſſe nothing, but by a witches li- cence and permiſſion.

And now forſooth it is brought to this point, that all di- uels, which were woont to be ſpirituall, may at their plea- ſure become corporall, and ſo ſhew themſelues familiar- lie to witches and coniurors, and to none other, and by them onlie may be made tame, and kept in a box, &c. So as a malicious old woman may command hir diuell to plague hir neighbo[rs] and he is afflicted in manner and forme as ſhe deſireth. But then commeth another witch, and ſhe biddeth hir diuell helpe, and he healeth the ſame pa[rt]ie. So as they make it a kingdome diuided in itſelfe, and therefore I truſt it will not long endure, but will ſhort- lie be ouerthrowne, according to the words of our Sa- uior, Omne regnum in ſe diuiſum deſolabitur, Euerie king-

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dome diuided in it ſelfe ſhalbe deſolate.

And although ſome ſaie that the diuell is the witches inſtrument, to bring hir purpoſes and practiſes to paſſe : yet others ſaie thatſhe is his inſtrument, to execute his pleaſure in anie thing, and therefore to be executed. But then (me thinks) ſhe ſhould be iniuriouſlie dealt withall, and put to death for anothers offenſe: for actions are not iudged by inſtrumentall cauſes; neither dooth the end and purpoſe of that which is done, depend vpon the meane inſtrument. Finallie, if the witch doo it not, why ſhould the witch die for it? But they ſaie that witches are perſuaded, and thinke, that they doo indeed thoſe miſ- cheefs; and haue a will to performe that which the diuell committeth : and that therefore they are worthie to die. By which reaſon euerie one ſhould be executed, that wi- ſheth euill to his neighbor, &c. But if the will ſhould be puniſhed by man, according to the offenſe againſt God, we ſhould be driuen by thouſands at once to the ſlaugh- terhouſe or butcherie. For whoſoeuer loatheth corre- Prouerb. 5. ction ſhall die. And who ſhould eſcape execution, if this lothſomneſſe (I ſaie) ſhould extend to death by the ciuill lawes. Alſo the reward of ſinne is death. Howbeit, eue- rie one that ſinneth,is not to be put to death by the magi- ſtrate. But (my Lord) it ſhalbe proued in my booke, and your Lordſhip ſhall trie it to be true, as well here at home in your natiue countrie,as alſo abrode in your ſeuerall cir- cuits, that(beſides them that be venefice, which are plaine poiſoners there will be found among our witches one- lie two ſorts; the one ſort being ſuch by imputation,as ſo thought of by others (and theſe are abuſed, and not abu- ſors) the other by acceptation, as being willingſo to be accompted (and theſe be meere couſenors.)

Caluinetreating of theſe magicians, calleth them Instit lib. 5.ca.8. ſect6. item upon Deut.cap.18. couſenors, ſaieng that they vſe their iuggling knacks one- lie to amaſe or abuſe the people; or elſe for fame: but he

might A.iiij.r The Epistle.

Lib. de lamiis,pag. 5. might rather haue ſaid for gaine. Eraſtus himſelfe, be- ing a principall writer in the behalfe of witches omnipo- tencie, is forced to confeſſe, that theſe Greeke words, μαλία, μαΓλαλία, φαρμαηία are moſt commonlie put for illuſion, falſe packing, couſenage, fraud, knauerie and de- ceipt: and is further driven to faie, that in ancient time, the learned were not ſo blockiſh, as not to ſee that the promiſes of magicians and inchanters were falſe, and no- thing elſe but knauerie, couſenage, and old wiues fables; and yet defendeth he their flieng in the aire, their tranf- ferring of corne or graſſe from one feeld to another, &c.

But as Eraſtus diſagreeth herein with himſelfe and his freends: ſo is there no agreement among anie of thoſe writers, but onlie in cruelties, abſurdeties, and impoſſibili- ties. And theſe (my Lord) that fall into ſo manifeſt con- tradictions, and into ſuch abſurd aſſeuerations, are not of the inferior ſort of writers; neither are they all papiſts, but men of ſuch accompt, as whole names giue more credit to their cauſe, than their writings. In whoſe behalf I am ſorie, and partlie for reuerence ſupreſſe their fondeſt er- rors and fowleſt abſurdeties; dealing ſpeciallie with them aIſaie. 59, 7. Rom. 3, 15. that moſt content in crueltie,a whoſe feete are ſwift bEccl. 27, 5. to ſhed bloud, ſtriuing (as b Ieſus the ſonne of Sirach faith) cProu. 1, 16. and haſting (as c Salomon the ſonne of Dauid faith) to dIer. 2, 34. powre out the bloud of the innocent; whoſe heat againſt ePſ. 139, 15. Eſai. 33, 15. these poore wretches cannot be allaied with anie other liquor than bloud. And therefore I feare thatd vnder their wings will be found the bloud of the foules of the poore, at that daie, when the Lord ſhall ſaie;e Depart from me ye bloudthirſtie men.

And bicauſe I know your Lordſhip will take no coun- ſell againſt innocent bloud, but rather ſupreſſe them that ſeeke to embrew their hands therein, I haue made choiſe to open their caſe vnto you, and to laie their miſe- rable calamatie before your feete: following herein the

aduiſe A.4.v The Epistle.

aduiſe of that learned man Brentius,who faith; Si quis In epistole ad Io Wier. Admonnuerit magistratum, ne in miſer as illas mulierculas ſa- uiat, eum ego arbitror diuinitús excitatum; that is, If anie admoniſh the magiſtrate not to deale too hardlie with theſe miſerable wretches, that are called witches, I thinke him a good inſtrument raiſed vp for this purpoſe by God himſelſe.

But it will perchance beſaid by witchmongers;to wit, by ſuch as attribute to witches the power which apper- teineth to God onelie, that I haue made choiſe of your Lordſhip to be a patrone to this my booke; bicauſe I think you fauour mine opinions, and by that meanes may the more freelie publiſh anie error or conceipt of mine owne; which ſhould rather be warranted by your Lordſhip au- thoritie, than by the word of God , or by ſufficient argu- ment. But I proteſt the contrarie, and by theſe preſents I renounce all proteƈtion, and deſpiſe all freendſhip that might ſerue to helpe towards the ſuppreſſing or ſupplan- ting of truth: knowing alſo that your Lordſhip is farre from allowing anie iniure done vnto man; much more an enimie to them that go about to diſhonor God , or to embezill the title of his immortall glorie. But bicauſe I know you to be perſpicuous, and able to ​​ſee downe into the depth and bottome of cauſes, and are not to be car- ried awaie with the vaine perſuaſion or ſuperſtition either of man, cuſtome, time, or multitude, but mooued with the authortitie of truth onlie: I craue your countenance here- in, euen ſo farre foorth, and no further, than the lawe of God ,the lawe of nature, the lawe of this land, and the rule of reaſon ſhall require. Neither doo I treat for theſe poore people anie otherwiſe, but ſo, and with one hand you may ſuſtaine the good, and with the other ſuppreſſe the euill: wherein you ſhalbe thought a father to orphans, and ad- uocate to widowes, a guide to the blind, a ſtaie to the lame, a comfort &countenance to the honeſt,a ſcourge

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and terror to the wicked.

Thus farre I haue beene bold to vſe your Lordſhips pa- tience, being offended with myſelfe, that I could not in breuitie vtter ſuch matter as I haue deliuered amplie: whereby (I confeſſe) occaſion of tediouſnes might be mi- niſtred, were it not that your great grauitie ioined with your ſingular conſtancie in reading and iudging be means of the contrarie. And I wiſh euen with all my hart, that I could make people conceiue the ſubſtance of my writing, and not to miſconſtrue anie part of my meaning. Then doubtles would I perſuade my ſelfe, that the companie of witchmongers, &c: being once decreaſed, the number alſo of witches, amp;c: would ſoone be diminiſhed. But true be the words of the Poet,

Haudquaquam poteris ſortirier omnia ſolus, Námque alys diui bello pollere dederunt, Huic ſaltandi artem, voce huic cytharáque canendi: Rurſum alyinſeruit ſagax in pectore magnus Iupiter ingenium, &c.

And therefore as doubtfull to preuaile by perſuading, though I haue reaſon and common ſenſe on my ſide; I reſt vpon earneſt wiſhing; namelie, to all people an abſo- lute truſt in God the creator, and not in creatures, which is to make fleſh our arme: that God may haue his due honor, which by the vndutifulnes of manie is turned into diſhonor, and leſſ cauſe of offenſe and er- rour giuen by common receiued euill ex- ample. And to your Lordſhip I wiſh, as increaſe of honour, ſo con- tinuance of good health, and happie daies.

Your Lordſhips to be commanded Reginald Scot. A5v
To the right worſhipfull Sir Thomas Scot Knight, &c.

S ir, I ſee among other maleƒaƈtors manie poore old women conuented be- fore you for working of miracles, other wiſe called witchcraft, and therefore I thought you alſo a meet perſon to whom I might cōmmend my booke. And here I haue occaſion to ſpeake of your ſincere adminiſtration of iustice, and of your dexteritie, diſcretion, charge, and trauell emploied in that behalfe, wherof I am ocu- latus testis. Howbeit I had rather refer the reader to com- mon fame, and their owne eies and eares to be ſatisfied; than to ſend them to a Stationers shop, where manie times lies are vendible, and truth contemptible. For I being of your houſe, of your name, & of your bloud; my foot being vnder your ta- ble, my hand in your dish, or rather in your purſſe, might bee thought to flatter you in that, wherein (I knowe) I should rather offend you than pleaſe you. And what need I currie fa- uour with my moſt aſſured friend? And if I should onelie pub- lish thoſe vertues (though they be manie) which give me ſpe- ciall occaſion to exhibit this my travell unto you, I should doo as a painter, that deſcribeth the foot of a notable perſonage, and leaveth all the beſt features in his bodie untouched.

I therefore (at this time) doo onelie deſire you to conſider of my report, concerning the evidence that is commonlie brought before you againſt them. See firſt whether the evi- dence be not friuolous, & whether the prooƒs brought against them be not incredible, conſiſting of gheſſes, preſumptions, & impoſſibilities contrarie to reaſon, ſcripture, and nature. See alſo what perſons complaine vpon them, whether they be not of the baſeſt,the unwiſeſt,amp; most faithles kind of people. Alſo

may A6R The Epistle.

may it pleaſe you to waie what accuſations and crimes they laie to their charge, namelie: She was at my houſse of late she would haue had a pot of milke, she departed in a chafe bicauſe she had it not, she railed, she curſſed, she mumbled and whiſ- pered, and finallie she ſaid she would be euen with me: and ſoone after my child, my cow, my ſow, or my pullet died, or was ſtrangelie taken. Naie (if it pleaſe your vvorship) I haue further proofe: I was with a wiſe woman, and she told me I had an ill neighbour, & that she would come to my houſe yer it were long, and ſo did she; and that she had a marke a- boue hir waste, & ſo had she: and God forgiue me, my ſtomach hath gone againſt hir a great while. Hir mother before hir was counted a witch, she hath beene beaten and ſcratched by the face till bloud was drawne upon hir, bicauſse she hath beene ſuſpected, & afterwards ſome of thoſe perſons were ſaid to amend. Theſse are the certeinties that I heare in their eui- dences.

Note alſo how eaſilie they may be brought to confeſſe that which they neuer did, nor lieth in the power of man to doo: and then ſee whether I haue cauſe to write as I doo. Further, if you shall ſee that infidelitie, poperie, and manie other ma- nifest hereſies be backed and shouldered, and their profeſſors animated and hartened, by yeelding to creatures ſuch infinit power as is wreſted out of Gods hand, and attributed to wit- ches: finallie, if you shall perceiue that I haue faithfullie and trulie deliuered and ſet downe the condition and ſtate of the witch, and alſo of the witchmonger, and have confuted by reaſon and lawe, and by the word of God it ſelfe, all mine ad- uerſaries obiections and arguments: then let me haue your countenance againſt them that maliciouſie oppoſe themſelues against me.

My greateſt aduerſaries are yoong ignorance and old cu- ſtome. For what follie ſoeuer tract of time hath fostered, it is

ſo A6r The Epistle.

ſo ſuperftitiouſlie purſued of ſome, as though no error could be acquainted with custome. But if the lawe of nations would iodine with ſuch custome, to the maintenance of ignorance, and to the ſuppreſſing of knowledge; the ciuileſt countrie in the world would ſoone become barbarous, &c. For as know- ledge and time diſcouereth errors, ſo dooth ſuperſtition and ignorance in time breed them. And concerning the opini- ons of ſuch, as wish that ignorance should rather be maintei- ned, than knowledge buſilie ſearched for, bicauſe thereby of- fenſe may grow : I anſwer, that we are commanded by Chriſt John.5. Prou.15,I. himſelfe to ſearch for knowledge : for it is the kings honour (as Salmon faith) to ſearch out a thing.

Aristotle ſaid to Alexander, that a mind well furnished was more beautiful than a bodie richlie araied. What can be more odious to man, or offenſisue to God, than ignorance: for through ignorance the I ewes did put Chriſt to death. Acts.3. Prouerbs.9. Which ignorance whoſoeuer forſaketh, is promiſed life euer- lasting: and therefore among Christians it should be abhor- red aboue all other things. For even as when we wrestle in the darke, we tumble in the mire,&c. ſo when we ſee not the truth, we wallow in errors. A blind man may ſeeke long in the riches yer he find a needle; and as ſoone is a doubt diſcauſſed by ignorance. Finallie, truth is no ſooner found out in ignorance, than a ſweet ſauor in a dunghill. And if they will allow men knowledge, and give them no leave to vſeit, men were much better be without it than have it. For it is, Matth.25. Matth.5. Luke.8: as to have a tallent, and to hide it under the earth; or to put a candle under a bushell: or as to have a ship, & to let hir lie always in the docke: which thing how profitable it is, I can ſaie somewhat by experience.

But hereof I need ſaie no more, for eerie man ſeeth that none can be happie who knoweth what felicitie me aneth. For what auaileth it to have riches, and not have ufe

thereof ? A7r The Epistle.

thereof? Trulie the heathen herein deſerued more commen- dation than manie christians, for they ſpared no paine, no coſt, nor trauell to atteine to knowledge. Pythagoras trauel- led from Thamus to Aegypt, and afterwards into Crete and Lacedæmonia: and Plato out of Athens into Italie and Ae- gypt, and all to find out hidden ſecrets and knowledge: which when a man hath, he feemeth to be ſeparated from mortalitie. For pretious ſtones, and all other creatures of what value ſo- euer, are but counterfeits to this iewell: They are mortal, corruptible, and inconstant; this is imortall, pure and cer- teine. VVherfore if I haue ſearched and found out any good thing, that ignorance and time hath ſmothered, the ſame I commend vnto you: to whom though I owe all that I haue, yet am I bold to make other partakers with you in this poore gift.

Your louing coufen Reg. Scot. A7v
To the right worſhipfull his louing friends, Maiſter Doƈtor Coldwell Deane of Ro- cheſter, and Maiſter Doƈtor Read- man Archdeacon of Can- turburie, &c.

H Auing found out two ſuch quill Ma- gistrates, as for direƈtion of indgement, and for or- dering matters concerning instice in thus common wealth (in my poore opinion) are verie ſingular perſons, who (I hope) will accept of my good will, and examine my booke by their experience as vn- to whom the matter therein conteined dooth great- lie apperteine: I haue now againe conſidered of two other points: namelie, diuinitie and philoſophie, wherevpon the ground- worke of my book is laid. Wherein although I know them to be verie ſuffi- cientlie informed, yet dooth not the iudgement and cenſure of thoſe cauſes ſo properlie apperteine tho them vs vnto you, whoſefame therein hath gotten pre- eminence aboue all others that I know of your callings: and in that reſpeƈt I am bold to ioine you with them, being all good neighbours togither in this commonwelth, and louing friends vnto me. I doo not preſent this vnto you, bicauſe it is meet for you; but for that you are meet for it (I meane) to iudge vpon it, to defend it, and if need be to correƈt it; knowing that you haue lear- ned of that graue counſeller Cato, not to ſhame or diſcountenance and bodie. For if I thought you as readie, as able, to diſgrace me for mine inſufficiencie; I ſhould not haue beene hastie (knowing your learning) to haue written vnto you: but if I ſhould be abaſhed to write to you, I ſhould ſhew me ſelfe igno- rant of your courteſie.

I knowe mine owne weakeneſſe, which if it haue beene able to maninteine this argument, the cauſe is the ſtronger. Eloquent words may pleaſe the eares, but ſufficient matter perſuadeth the hart. So as, if I exhibit wholſome drinke (though it be ſmall) in a treene diſh with a faithfull hand, I hope it will bee as well accepted, as ſtrong wine offered in a ſiluer bowle with a flattering beart. And ſurelie it is a point of as great liberalitie to receiue a ſmall thing thankefullie, as to giue and diſtribute great and costlie gifts bountifullie: for there is more ſupplied with courteous anſwers t an with rich rewards. The ty-

rant A8r The Epistle.

rant Dionyſius was not ſo hated for his tyrannie, as for his churliſh and ſtrange behauiour. Among the poore Iſraelites ſacrifices, God was ſatiſfied with the tenth part of an Ephah of flower, ſo as it were fine and good. Chriſst liked well of the poore widowes mite, Lewis of France accepted a rape root of clowniſh Conan, Cyrus vouchſafed to drinke a cup of cold water out of the hand of poore Sinætes: and ſo it may pleaſe you to accept this ſimple booke at my hands, which I faithfullie exhibit vnto you, not knowing your opinions to meet with mine, but knowing your learning and iudgement to be able as well to correct me where I ſpeake herein vnskilfullie, as others when they ſpeake hereof maliciouſlie

Some be ſuch dogs as they will barke at my writings, whether I mainteine or refute this argument: as Diogenes ſnarled both at the Rhodians and at the Lacedæmonians: at the one, bicauſe they were braue; at the other, bicauſe they were not braue. Homer himſelfe could not auoid reprochfull ſpeaches. I am ſure that they which neuer ſtudied to learne anie good thing, will ſtudie to find faultshereat faults hereat . I for my part feare not theſe wars, nor all the aduerſaries I haue; were it not for certeine cowards, who (I knowe) will come behind my backe and bite me.

But now to the matter. My question is not (as manie fondlie ſuppoſe) whether there be witches or naie: but whether they can doo ſuch miraculous works as are imputed vnto them. Good Maister Deane, is it poſsible for a man to breake his fast with you at Rochester, and to dine that day at Durham with Maister Doctor Matthew; or can your enimie maime you, when the Ocean ſea is betwixt you? What reall communitie is betwixt a ſpirit and a bodie? May a ſpirituall bodie become temporall at his pleaſure? Or may a carnall bo- die become inuiſible? Is it likelie that the liues of all Princes, magistrates, & ſubiects, ſhould depend vpon the will, or rather vpon the wiſh of a poore mali- cious doting old foole; and that power exempted from the wiſe, the rich, the learned, the godlie, &c? Finallie, is it poſsible for man or woman to do anie of thoſe miracles expreſſed in my booke, & ſo constantlie reported by great clarks? If you ſaie, no; then am I ſatisfied. If you ſaie that God, abſolutelie, or by meanes can accompliſh all thoſe, and manie more, I go with you. But witches may well ſaie they can doo theſe things, howbeit they cannot ſhew how they doo them. If I for my part ſhould ſaie I could doo thoſe things, my verie aduer- ſaries would ſaie that I lied.

O Maister Archdeacon, is it not pitie, that that which is ſaid to be doone with the almightie power of the moſt high God, and by our ſauiour his onelie ſonne Ieſus Christ our Lord, ſhould be referred to a baggage old womans nod

or A8v The Epistle.

or wiſh, & c? Good Sir, is it not one manifest kind of Idolatrie, for them that labor and are laden, to come vnto witches to be refreſhed? If witches could helpe whom they are ſaid to have made ſuke, I ſee no reaſon, but remedie might as well be required at their hands, as a purſse demanded of him that hath ſtolne it. But trulie it is manifold idolatrie, to aske that of a creature, which none can giue but the Creator. The papist hath ſome colour of ſcripture to main- teine his idoll of bread, but no Ieſuiticall distinction can couer the witchmon- gers idolatrie in this behalfe. Alas, I am ſorie and aſhamed to ſee how ma- nie die, that being ſaid to be bewitched, onlie ſeeke for magicall cures, whom wholſome diet and good medicines would haue recouered. I dare aſſure you both, that there would be none of theſe couſening kind of witches, did not witchmongers mainteine them, followe them, and beleeue in them and their oracles: whereby indeed all good learning and honest arts are ouerthrowne. For theſe that most aduance their power, and mainteine the skill of theſe wit- ches, vnderſtand no part thereof: and yet being manie times wiſe in other matters, are made fooles by the moſt fooles in the world.

Me thinks theſe magicall phyſicians deale in the commonwelth, much like as a certeine kind of Cynicall people doo in the church, whoſe ſeuere ſaiengs are accompted among ſome ſuch oracles, as may not be doubted of; who in ſtead of learning and authoritie (which they make contemptible) doo feed the people with their owne deuiſes and imaginations, which they prefer before all other diuinitie: and labouring to erect a church according to their owne fan- ſies, wherein all order is condemned, and onelie their magicall words and cu- rious directions aduanced, they would vtterlie ouerthrowe the true Church. And euen as theſe inchanting Paracelſians abuſe the people, leading them from the true order of phyſicke to their charmes: ſo doo theſe other (I ſaie) diſ- ſuade from hearkening to learning and obedience, and whiſper in mens eares to teach them their frierlike traditions. And of this ſect the cheefe author at this time is one Browne, a fugitiue, a meet couer for ſuch a cup: as hereto- fore the Anabaptists, the Arrians, and the Franciſcane friers.

[indent] Trulie not onlie nature, being the foundation of all perfection; but alſo ſcripture, being the mistreſſe and director thereof, and of all christianitie, is beautified with knowledge and learning. For as nature without diſcipline dooth naturallie incline vnto vanities, and as it were ſucke vp errors: ſo doth the word, or rather the letter of the ſcripture, without vnderſtanding, not onlie make vs deuoure errors, but yeeldeth vs vp to death & destruction & Rom.2, 27. 2.Cor.3, 6. therefore [Paule] ſaith he was not a minister of the letter, but of the ſpirit.

Thus I haue beene bold to deliuer vnto the world, and to you, thoſe ſimple

notes, B1r