Essays24.com - Term Papers and Free Essays
Search

The Salem Witch Trial

Essay by   •  November 25, 2010  •  792 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,711 Views

Essay Preview: The Salem Witch Trial

Report this essay
Page 1 of 4

The Salem Witch Trial

The Salem Witchcraft was a series of undesirable events, which was powered by paranoia and fear. Though several witch trials occurred before the Salem Witch Trial, this was the most well known of all. Many innocent people were accused of witchcraft which resulted to 19 men and women that were hanged, 17 innocents that died in unsanitary prisons, and an 80-year old man that was crushed to death by putting stones on top of his stomach until he confesses (movie: The Crucible). In some accounts, it was reported that two dogs were stoned to death for cooperating with the Devil. Why did the Salem Witch trial occur? Were these trials appropriate? Or were they truly a Devil's work? The Salem Witch Trials might have occurred for a variety of reasons such as people's ignorance that led to superstitions. It might have also occurred because people's crave for power, or it might also be because of fear.

In the early years of America, people were mostly unaware of certain things. Sickness, for instance, was an important issue for people didn't know how to manage or cure such complex illnesses. The Puritans, during the colonial times, didn't have much information about certain things. They came to believe that certain unexplainable events were done by a powerful source of evil thus brought about superstitions. The infamous Witch Trials done at Salem, Massachusetts, which spread across the continent, was an example of people's injustice acts in response to superstitions. One of the major cause of the Salem Witchcraft trials was superstition, an "irrational belief or practice resulting from ignorance or fear of the unknown" (www.encyclopedia.com). A lack of scientific knowledge led many people to be convinced that, witches were responsible to the death of an animal or a livestock: John Rogger "testified that upon the threatening words " of Martha Carrier " his cattle would be strangely bewitched."(Mather, p55) John Roger believed on superstitions; thus he proposed that Martha was a witch who was killing his cows. It is easy to see how the people of Salem were so vulnerable to the notion of witches taking over their town. Furthermore Tituba, Reverend Parris's slave, practiced ritual dance and "black magic" in her early years in Africa. She influenced most of the girls in town through her stories. The girls believed on superstitions which overall started the Salem Witch Trials and made it possible for the witch trials to occur for a long duration.

The longing for power is something every person wants thus when one gets a hold of such power it is hard to give it up. The so-called "afflicted children" had the power to condemn people as witches. (The Crucible) They had the authority to accuse anybody of witchcraft to defend their mischievous acts and be seen to the public as innocent young girls. Through their power, they,

...

...

Download as:   txt (4.7 Kb)   pdf (73.8 Kb)   docx (10.2 Kb)  
Continue for 3 more pages »
Only available on Essays24.com