In the Devil’s Snare, by Mary Beth Norton & The Salem Witch Trials, by Marilynne K. Roach

The early years of each decade seem to bring a new spate of books on the Salem witchcraft episode, as if to commemorate anew the tragic events that occurred in 1692-93. Beginning in January 1692 with the "affliction" of young girls--the daughter and niece of Salem Village's minister, Samuel Parris--the number of the bewitched grew, the search for witches and wizards spread, over 100 people were jailed, and a series of sensational and controversial trials ensued. Nineteen people were hanged and one pressed to death, with several more adults, children and infants dying in prison, in what has become a wrenching cautionary tale of complicity, pettiness and mass hysteria.

 

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