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➺ [Reading] ➼ Letters on demonology and witchcraft By Walter Scott ➯ – Ultimatetrout.info

Letters on demonology and witchcraft

Letters on demonology and witchcraftFacsimile Reprint Of 1st Ed., London, G. Routledge & Sons, 1884. Perhaps worth more; but I read this book in audio format, and found the reader lacking. Interesting and informative

Walter Scott wrote a series of letters in the later years of his life on the possibility of ghosts, demons, fairies and witches. He did some thorough research and cited his sources. This was written in the early 1800s which makes it a valuable contemporary account.

Some highlights include individual case accounts of witchcraft trials including the Salem witch trials, talk of ghost sightings being related to alcohol abuse and abuse of nitrous oxide as a drug, and fascinating talk on why the Catholic Church at one time tolerated witches.

This is a very easy to read well structured book which I find is a valuable historical record.

Sharp eyed fans of Diana Gabaldon's "outlander" series will be delighted to find a reference to a witch by name who shares a name with a famous witch in the novels . I'm assuming Ms. Gabaldon may have read this book as a resource!

Anyway if you have a love of witchcraft history and the paranormal then this book is for you. This was a slog. Dense and full of anecdotes, I would recommend this as an audiobook; I imagined it as my drunk important relative relating his wisdom for a week’s vacation.

There are great pearls of wisdom, especially from a 19th century perspective and his empathy towards the victims of superstition is refreshing. The author wholeheartedly believes its nonsense so if you’re looking for grimoire to pull demons into your life, look elsewhere. Oh boy, another book with no pic. I really read some obscure stuff.
Anywho, this classic of the field is a buried treasure. Scott shares his knowledge of this subject with many stories; well known and personal. I liked his skepticism, not only for (obviously witchcraft), but for the supernatural in general. This book is therefore still pertinent for this day, with all the supernatural beliefs that people still treasure. Of course, Scott is a Christian, and his religious beliefs are true as opposed to the false beliefs of the old pagan religions. But then again, it is a very old book.
Something I really liked about his letters that many other books on the history of witchcraft do not cover is his coverage of the faeries. A very beautiful and haunting couple of chapters. Very interesting content but the style and kindle formatting of this work made it very difficult to comprehend.

On the good side, the content was extremely interesting. Most interesting was the work by King James VI/I from the early 17th century addressing fascinating topics such as descriptions of magic, witches, demons, etc. written from the perspective of the times using the Bible as well as logic of the time to define and explain these phenomena. The latter portion of the book was a series of summaries of case testimony, etc. from proceedings against folks accused of witchcraft. This was not quite as interesting though fascinating in its own right.

But, this book was nearly impossible to read. To his credit, the author did provide a lot of very useful footnotes explaining things and attempted to express things in more modern terms. But the sentence structure of the time seems to have been to write the longest sentences with the most commas, semicolons, and colons possible. To exacerbate this problem, in the Kindle edition for some reason the word spacing started to deteriorate (not the author's fault) in the second case summary and never recovered. As a result you are stuck attempting to make sense of sentences like, "These examinations and some others were taken and charily preserved for the contriving of sufficient evidences against them, and when the Judges of Assize came down to Lincoln about the first week of March, being Sir Henry Hobert, Lord chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and Sir Ed: Bromleyone of the Barons of the Ex c hequer, they were presented unto them, who not only wondered at the wickedness of these persons, but were amazed at their practices and horrible contracts with the Devilto damn their own souls: And although the Right Honorable Earl had
suffi c ient grief for the loss of his Children; yet it was no doubt the greater to consider the manner, and how it pleased God to inflict on him such a fashion of visitation: Besides, as it amazed the hearers to understand the particulars, and the circumstances of this deviilishcontract, so was it as wonderful to see their desperate impenitency, and horrible di s traction, according to the rest of that sort, exclai m ing against the Devil for deluding them, and now breaking promise with them, when they stood in most need of help." [Phew!]

Although it would subtract from the period feel of the work what is needed is a version of this in contemporary English or at least in more contemporary sentence structure. An interesting look at the European Witch Trials and persecution of the accused. Most sadly was quite dry and flowed on the perspective of recounting legend and lore. Some of Scotts recollections lacked detailed facts and felt more like a campfire time of story telling. I appreciated much of Scotts skepticism especially with what we know now, however focusing on stories of fairies was a little out there even for the time period. The organization of the book left a lot to be desired in that much of his stories fell right into one another without a break sometimes causing it to be a garbled mess. An interesting period piece none the less, but not much really new to be exposed to. Walter Scott's "letters" on the topics of Demonology and Witchcraft didn't really draw me in. I read this book looking for picturesque details that I could use in SF/F short stories. And to be fair, I found a few

Why is the food in Faerie saltless? Because salt, a preservative, symbolizes the immortality that is denied to the fae. Cool, right?

Unfortunately, Scott does tend to go on at length with lessthanthrilling biblical analysis (the witch of Endor AGAIN?) and moreofthesame accounts of witch trials in puritan england. For historical interest only.

Sir Walter Scott is famous for his novels and this is evident through his engaging language. His carefully constructed sentences are clear, colorful and meaningful. This book is a skeptical rationalist take on the witch trials in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries along with some legends and anecdotes of paranormal apparitions. Scott sympathizes with the unfortunate victims who were burned as witches and he takes the time to explain why superstitions about witches arose, why these superstitions are incorrect, and just how illogical the accusations and interrogations were. He makes it clear that he is a Christian and believes that humans have souls; he just doesn't believe that God is overly generous with miracles involving resurrections, which means he doesn't believe in ghosts. A downside of this book is that the chapters don't follow any obvious organization and the rambling anecdotes make it feel a bit like reading an encyclopedia with commentary rather than a grand cohesive argument. Many of the recalled stories are brilliant but I did a lot of skimming through Scott's rationalizations. A fair amount is Scott having a masturbatory skepticism carnival to anecdotes about seeing ghosts in configurations of curtains and feeling specters after touching yourself with a hand that's fallen asleep, but then the better stories don't have this cast of poshlost that most apparent ghost encounters do. I learned a lot more about the world Scott's dealing with from his asides about the aurora borealis in Edinburgh and mortal saltless fairy food, the oddities are right.

Librarian Note There is than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. Sir Walter Scott was born on August 15, 1771 in Edinburgh, Scotland Scott created and popularized historical novels in a series called the Waverley Novels In his novels Scott arranged the plots and characters so the reader enters into the lives of both great and ordinary people caught up in violent, dramatic

➺ [Reading] ➼ Letters on demonology and witchcraft By Walter Scott ➯ – Ultimatetrout.info

    Anyway if you have a love of witchcraft history and the paranormal then this book is for you. This was a slog. Dense and full of anecdotes, I would recommend this as an audiobook; I imagined it as my drunk important relative relating his wisdom for a week’s vacation.

    There are great pearls of wisdom, especially from a 19th century perspective and his empathy towards the victims of superstition is refreshing. The author wholeheartedly believes its nonsense so if you’re looking for grimoire to pull demons into your life, look elsewhere. Oh boy, another book with no pic. I really read some obscure stuff.
    Anywho, this classic of the field is a buried treasure. Scott shares his knowledge of this subject with many stories; well known and personal. I liked his skepticism, not only for (obviously witchcraft), but for the supernatural in general. This book is therefore still pertinent for this day, with all the supernatural beliefs that people still treasure. Of course, Scott is a Christian, and his religious beliefs are true as opposed to the false beliefs of the old pagan religions. But then again, it is a very old book.
    Something I really liked about his letters that many other books on the history of witchcraft do not cover is his coverage of the faeries. A very beautiful and haunting couple of chapters. Very interesting content but the style and kindle formatting of this work made it very difficult to comprehend.

    On the good side, the content was extremely interesting. Most interesting was the work by King James VI/I from the early 17th century addressing fascinating topics such as descriptions of magic, witches, demons, etc. written from the perspective of the times using the Bible as well as logic of the time to define and explain these phenomena. The latter portion of the book was a series of summaries of case testimony, etc. from proceedings against folks accused of witchcraft. This was not quite as interesting though fascinating in its own right.

    But, this book was nearly impossible to read. To his credit, the author did provide a lot of very useful footnotes explaining things and attempted to express things in more modern terms. But the sentence structure of the time seems to have been to write the longest sentences with the most commas, semicolons, and colons possible. To exacerbate this problem, in the Kindle edition for some reason the word spacing started to deteriorate (not the author's fault) in the second case summary and never recovered. As a result you are stuck attempting to make sense of sentences like, "These examinations and some others were taken and charily preserved for the contriving of sufficient evidences against them, and when the Judges of Assize came down to Lincoln about the first week of March, being Sir Henry Hobert, Lord chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and Sir Ed: Bromleyone of the Barons of the Ex c hequer, they were presented unto them, who not only wondered at the wickedness of these persons, but were amazed at their practices and horrible contracts with the Devilto damn their own souls: And although the Right Honorable Earl had
    suffi c ient grief for the loss of his Children; yet it was no doubt the greater to consider the manner, and how it pleased God to inflict on him such a fashion of visitation: Besides, as it amazed the hearers to understand the particulars, and the circumstances of this deviilishcontract, so was it as wonderful to see their desperate impenitency, and horrible di s traction, according to the rest of that sort, exclai m ing against the Devil for deluding them, and now breaking promise with them, when they stood in most need of help." [Phew!]

    Although it would subtract from the period feel of the work what is needed is a version of this in contemporary English or at least in more contemporary sentence structure. An interesting look at the European Witch Trials and persecution of the accused. Most sadly was quite dry and flowed on the perspective of recounting legend and lore. Some of Scotts recollections lacked detailed facts and felt more like a campfire time of story telling. I appreciated much of Scotts skepticism especially with what we know now, however focusing on stories of fairies was a little out there even for the time period. The organization of the book left a lot to be desired in that much of his stories fell right into one another without a break sometimes causing it to be a garbled mess. An interesting period piece none the less, but not much really new to be exposed to. Walter Scott's "letters" on the topics of Demonology and Witchcraft didn't really draw me in. I read this book looking for picturesque details that I could use in SF/F short stories. And to be fair, I found a few

    Why is the food in Faerie saltless? Because salt, a preservative, symbolizes the immortality that is denied to the fae. Cool, right?

    Unfortunately, Scott does tend to go on at length with lessthanthrilling biblical analysis (the witch of Endor AGAIN?) and moreofthesame accounts of witch trials in puritan england. For historical interest only.

    Sir Walter Scott is famous for his novels and this is evident through his engaging language. His carefully constructed sentences are clear, colorful and meaningful. This book is a skeptical rationalist take on the witch trials in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries along with some legends and anecdotes of paranormal apparitions. Scott sympathizes with the unfortunate victims who were burned as witches and he takes the time to explain why superstitions about witches arose, why these superstitions are incorrect, and just how illogical the accusations and interrogations were. He makes it clear that he is a Christian and believes that humans have souls; he just doesn't believe that God is overly generous with miracles involving resurrections, which means he doesn't believe in ghosts. A downside of this book is that the chapters don't follow any obvious organization and the rambling anecdotes make it feel a bit like reading an encyclopedia with commentary rather than a grand cohesive argument. Many of the recalled stories are brilliant but I did a lot of skimming through Scott's rationalizations. A fair amount is Scott having a masturbatory skepticism carnival to anecdotes about seeing ghosts in configurations of curtains and feeling specters after touching yourself with a hand that's fallen asleep, but then the better stories don't have this cast of poshlost that most apparent ghost encounters do. I learned a lot more about the world Scott's dealing with from his asides about the aurora borealis in Edinburgh and mortal saltless fairy food, the oddities are right."/>
  • Hardcover
  • 320 pages
  • Letters on demonology and witchcraft
  • Walter Scott
  • 23 November 2019
  • 9780854095377

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