Ireland Holds its Last Trial for Witchcraft

Ireland Holds its Last Trial for Witchcraft

Burning Alleged Witches
Source: Wikipedia

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Ireland's last trial for witchcraft is held at Islandmagee. Eight women are arrested and charged based on the allegations of a teenage girl, Mary Dunbar, who claims that the eight women attacked her in her bed. None of the eight women have lawyers; all are poor and some are physically disabled.

According to court records:

"Their characters were inquired into, and some were reported unfavorably of, which seemed to be rather due to their ill appearance than to any facts provided against them.

It was made to appear on oath that most of them had received the Communion, some of them very lately, that several of them had been laborious, industrious people, and had frequently been known to pray with their families, both publickly and privately; most of them could say the Lord's Prayer ... they being every one Presbyterians."

Because of this the judge feels that they can't reasonably be considered guilty, but the jury disagrees.

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