The Devil's Dominion: Magic and Religion in Early New England

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9780521466707: The Devil's Dominion: Magic and Religion in Early New England

Early New Englanders used magical techniques to divine the future, to heal the sick, to protect against harm and to inflict harm. Protestant ministers of the time claimed that religious faith and magical practice were incompatible, and yet, as Richard Godbeer shows, there were significant affinities between the two that enabled layfolk to switch from one to the other without any immediate sense of wrongdoing. Godbeer argues that the different perspectives on witchcraft engendered by magical tradition and Puritan doctrine often caused confusion and disagreement when New Englanders sought legal punishment of witches.

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Book Description:

Showing that there were significant affinities between religious faith and magical practices, this study of the use of folk magic by early New Englanders reveals that even church members sometimes turned to magic to divine the future, heal the sick, and protect against harm or inflict it.

About the Author:

Richard Godbeer is a professor of history at the University of California, Riverside.

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Book Description CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.The Devil s Dominion examines the use of folk magic by ordinary men and women in early New England. The book describes in vivid detail the magical techniques used by settlers and the assumptions which underlaid them. Godbeer argues that layfolk were generally far less consistent in their beliefs and actions than their ministers would have liked; even church members sometimes turned to magic. The Devil s Dominion reveals that the relationship between magical and religious belief was complex and ambivalent: some members of the community rejected magic altogether, but others did not. Godbeer argues that the controversy surrounding astrological prediction in early New England paralleled clerical condemnation of magical practice, and that the different perspectives on witchcraft engendered by magical tradition and Puritan doctrine often caused confusion and disagreement when New Englanders sought legal punishment of witches. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9780521466707

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Book Description CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom, 1994. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. The Devil s Dominion examines the use of folk magic by ordinary men and women in early New England. The book describes in vivid detail the magical techniques used by settlers and the assumptions which underlaid them. Godbeer argues that layfolk were generally far less consistent in their beliefs and actions than their ministers would have liked; even church members sometimes turned to magic. The Devil s Dominion reveals that the relationship between magical and religious belief was complex and ambivalent: some members of the community rejected magic altogether, but others did not. Godbeer argues that the controversy surrounding astrological prediction in early New England paralleled clerical condemnation of magical practice, and that the different perspectives on witchcraft engendered by magical tradition and Puritan doctrine often caused confusion and disagreement when New Englanders sought legal punishment of witches. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9780521466707

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