of September, Mr. Noyes stood looking at the execution, he exclaimed that it was a sad thing to see eight firebrands of hell hanging there! The spectacle was never seen again on Witches' Hill.

The Jacobs family was signalised by the confession of one of its members -Margaret, one of the afflicted' girls. She brought her grandfather to the gallows, and suffered as much as a weak, ignorant, impressionable person under evil influences could suffer from doubt and remorse. But she married well seven years afterwards still feeling enough in regard to the past to refuse to be married by Mr. Noyes. She deserved such peace of mind as she obtained, for she retracted the confession of witchcraft which she had made, and went to prison. It was too late then to save her victims, Mr. Burroughs and her grandfather, but she obtained their full and free forgiveAt that time this was the condition


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nity and such a time. He had land, and was called Goodman Corey;' but he was unpopular from being too rough for even so young a state of society. He was once tried for the death of a man whom he had used roughly, but he was only fined. He had strifes and lawsuits with his neighbours; but he won three wives, and there was due affection between him and his children. He was eighty years old when the Witch Delusion broke out, and was living alone with his wife Martha a devout woman, who spent much of her time on her knees, praying against the snares of Satan, that is, the delusion about witchcraft. She spoke freely of the tricks of the children, the blindness of the magistrates, and the falling away of many from common sense and the word of God; and, while her husband attended every public meeting, she stayed at home to pray. In his fanaticism he quarrelled with her, and she was at once marked out for a victim, and one of the earliest. When visited by examiners, she No account has come to us of the deportment smiled, and conversed with entire composof George Jacobs, Sr., at his execution. As he was remarkable in life for the firmness of his ure, declaring that she was no witch, and that she did not think that there were any mind, so he probably was in death. He had made his will before the delusion arose. It is witches.' By such sayings, and by the expresdated January 29, 1692; and shows that he, sions of vexation that fell from her husband, like Proctor, had a considerable estate. and the fanaticism of two of her four sonsIn his infirm old age, he had been condemned in-law, she was soon brought to extremity. to die for a crime of which he knew himself in- But her husband was presently under accunocent, and which there is some reason to be-sation too; and much amazed he evidently lieve he did not think any one capable of com- was at his position. His wife was one of mitting. He regarded the whole thing as a the eight firebrands of hell' whom Mr. wicked conspiracy and absurd fabrication. He Noyes saw swung off on the 22nd of Sephad to end his long life upon a scaffold in a week tenber. Martha Corey,' said the record, from that day. His house was desolated, and protesting her innocency, concluded her his property sequestered. His only son, charged life with an eminent prayer on the scaffold.' with the same crime, had eluded the sheriffleaving his family, in the hurry of his flight, die in the same way; but he had chosen a Her husband had been supposed certain to unprovided for-and was an exile in foreign lands. The crazy wife of that son was in prison and in chains, waiting trial on the same charge; her little children, including an unweaned infant, left in a deserted and destitute condition in the woods. The older children were scattered he knew not where, while one of them had completed the bitterness of his lot by becoming a confessor, upon being arrested with her mother as a witch. This granddaughter, Margaret, overwhelmed with fright and horror, bewildered by the statements of the accusers, and controlled probably by the arguments and arbitrary methods of address employed by her minister, Mr. Noyes-whose peculiar function in those proceedings seems to have been to drive persons accused to make confession-had been betrayed into that position, and became a confessor and accuser of others.' (Vol. ii. p. 312).

The life and death of a prominent citizen, Giles Corey, should not be altogether passed over in a survey of such a commu


different one.

His anguish at his rash folly at the outset of the delusion excited the strongest desire to bear testimony on behalf of his wife and other innocent persons, and to give an emphatic blessing to the two sons-in-law who had been brave and faithful in his wife's cause. He executed a deed by which he presented his excellent children with his property in honour of their mother's memory; and, aware that if tried he would be condemned and executed, and his Property forfeited, he resolved not to plead, and to submit to the consequence of standing mute. Old as he was, he endured it. He stood mute, and the court had, as the authorities believed, no alternative. He was pressed to death, as devoted husbands and fathers were, here and there, in the Middle Ages, when they chose to save their families from the consequences of attainder by dying untried. We will not sicken our

readers with the details of the slow, cruel, more were hanged. Mather, Noyes, and and disgusting death. He bore it, only Parris had no idea that these eight would praying for heavier weights to shorten his be the last. But so it was. Thus far, one agony. Such a death and such a testimony, only had escaped after being made sure of and the execution of his wife two days in the courts. The married daughter of a later, weighed on every heart in the com- clergyman had been condemned, was remunity; and no revival of old charges prieved by the Governor, and was at last against the rough colonist had any effect in discharged on the ground of the insufficiency the presence of such an act as his last. He of the evidence. Henceforth, after that was long believed to haunt the places where fearful September day, no evidence was he lived and died; and the attempt made found sufficient. The accusers had grown by the ministers and one of their afflicted' too audacious in their selection of victims; agents to impress the church and society their clerical patrons had become too openly with a vision which announced his damna-determined to give no quarter. The Rev. tion, was a complete failure. Cotton Mather Francis Dane signed memorials to the Legshowed that Ann Putnam had received a islature and the Courts on the 18th of Octodivine communication, proving Giles Corey ber, against the prosecutions. He had reaa murderer; and Ann Putnam's father laid son to know something about them, for we the facts before the judge; but it was too hear of nine at least of his children, grandlate now for visions, and for insinuations to children, relatives, and servants who had the judges, and for clerical agitation to have been brought under accusation. He pointed any success. Brother Noyes hurried on a out the snare by which the public mind, as church meeting while Giles Corey was actu-well as the accused themselves, had been ally lying under the weights, to excommuni- misled - the escape afforded to such as cate him for witchcraft on the one hand, or would confess. When one spoke out, othsuicide on the other; and the ordinance ers followed. When a reasonable explanawas passed. But it was of no avail against tion was afforded, ordinary people were the rising tide of reason and sympathy. only too thankful to seize upon it. Though This was the last vision, and the last at- the prisons were filled, and the courts occutempt to establish one in Salem, if not in pied over and over again, there were no the Province. It remained for Mr. Noyes, more horrors; the accused were all acand the Mathers, and Mr. Parris, and every quitted; and in the following May, Sir Wilclergyman concerned, to endure the popu- liam Phipps discharged all the prisoners by lar hatred and their own self-questioning proclamation. Such a jail-delivery has for the rest of their days. The lay author- never been known in New England,' is the ities were stricken with remorse and hum-testimony handed down. The Governor bled with grief: but their share of the retribution was more endurable than that of the pastors who had proved so wolfish towards their flocks.

was aware that the clergy, magistrates, and judges, hitherto active, were full of wrath at his course; but public opinion now demanded a reversal of the administration of the last fearful year.

In the month of September 1692, they believed themselves in the thick of the As to the striking feature of the case fight between the Devil and the Lamb.' the confessions of so large a proportion of Cotton Mather was nimble and triumphant the accused-Mr. Upham manifests the on the Witches' Hill whenever there were perplexity which we encounter in almost all firebrands of hell' swinging there; and narrators of similar scenes. In all countries they all hoped to do much good work for and times in which trials for witchcraft have the Lord yet, for they had lists of suspected taken place, we find the historians dealing persons in their pockets, who must be anxiously with the question-how it could brought into the courts month by month, happen that so many persons declared themand carted off to the Hill. One of the gay- selves guilty of an impossible offence, when est and most complacent letters on the sub- the confession must seal their doom? The ject of this fight in the correspondence of solution most commonly offered is one that Cotton Mather is dated on the 20th of Sep- may apply to a case here and there, but certember 1692, within a month of the day tainly cannot be accepted as disposing of when he was improving the occasion at the any large number. It is assumed that the foot of the gallows where the former pastor, victim preferred being killed at once to liv Rev. George Burroughs, and four others ing on under suspicion, insult, and ill will, were hung. In the interval fifteen more re- under the imputation of having dealt with ceived sentence of death; Giles Corey had the Devil. Probable as this may be in the died his fearful death the day before; and case of a stout-hearted, reasoning, forecastin two days after, Corey's widow and sevening person possessed of nerve to carry out a

policy of suicide, it can never be believed was evidently long before anything like a of any considerable proportion of the ordi- reasonable and genial temper returned to nary run of old men and women charged society in and about Salem. The acknowlwith sorcery. The love of life and the hor- edgments of error made long after were ror of a cruel death at the hands of the mob half-hearted, and so were the expressions of or of the hangman are too strong to admit grief and pity in regard to the intolerable of a deliberate sacrifice so bold, on the part woes of the victims. It is scarcely intelligiof terrified and distracted old people like ble how the admissions on behalf of the the vast majority of the accused; while the wronged should have been so reluctant, and few of a higher order, clearer in mind and the sympathy with the devoted love of their stronger in nerve, would not be likely to nearest and dearest so cold. We must cite effect their escape from an unhappy life by what Mr. Upham says in honour of these a lie of the utmost conceivable gravity. If, last, for such solace is needed: in the Salem case, life was saved by confession towards the last, it was for a special While, in the course of our story, we have reason; and it seems to be a singular in-witnessed some shocking instances of the violastance of such a mode of escape. Some tion of the most sacred affections and obligations other mode of explanation is needed; and dren, testifying against each other, and exerting of life, in husbands and wives, parents and chilthe observations of modern inquiry supply themselves for mutual destruction, we must not it. There can be no doubt now that the overlook the many instances in which filial, pasufferers under nervous disturbances, the rental, and fraternal fidelity and love have shone subjects of abnormal condition, found them-conspicuously. It was dangerous to befriend an selves in possession of strange faculties, and accused person. Proctor stood by his wife to thought themselves able to do new and won-protect her, and it cost him his life. Children derful things. When urged to explain how protested against the treatment of their parents, it was, they could only suppose, as so many and they were all thrown into prison. Daniel of the Salem victims did, that it was by Andrew, a citizen of high standing, who had 'some evil spirit;' and except where there been deputy to the General Court, asserted, in was such an intervening agency as Mr. Par- the boldest language, his belief of Rebecca ris's circle,' the only supposition was that Nurse's innocence; and he had to fly the counthe intercourse between the Evil Spirit and try to save his life. Many devoted sons and themselves was direct. It is impossible daughters clung to their parents, visited them in even now to witness the curious phenomena prison in defiance of a blood-thirsty mob; kept by their side on the way to execution; expressed of somnambulism and catalepsy without a their love, sympathy, and reverence to the last; keen sense of how natural and even inevita-and, by brave and perilous enterprise, got posble it was for similar subjects of the Middle session of their remains, and bore them back Ages and in Puritan times to believe them- under the cover of midnight to their own threshselves ensnared by Satan, and actually en-olds, and to graves kept consecrated by their dowed with his gifts, and to confess their prayers and tears. One noble young man is calamity, as the only relief to their scared said to have effected his mother's escape from and miserable minds. This explanation seems not to have occurred to Mr. Upham; and, for want of it, he falls into great amazement at the elaborate artifice with which the sufferers invented their confessions, and adapted them to the state of mind of the authorities and the public. With the right key in his hand, he would have seen only what was simple and natural where he now bids us marvel at the pitch of artfulness and skill attained by poor wretches scared out of their natural wits.

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the jail, and secreted her in the woods until after the delusion had passed away, provided food and clothing for her, erected a wigwam for her shelter, and surrounded her with every comfort her situation would admit of. The poor creature must, however, have endured a great amount of tured in the all but desperate attempt to rescue suffering; for one of her larger limbs was fracher from the prison walls.' (Vol. ii. p. 348.)

The act of reversal of attainder, passed early in the next century, tells us that some of the principal accusers and witnesses in those dark and severe prosecutions have since discovered themselves to be persons of profligate and vicious conversation;' and on other authority we are assured that, 'not without spot before, they became afterwards abandoned to open vice.' This was doubtless true of some; but of many it was not; and of this we shall have a word to say presently.

Mr. Parris's parsonage soon went to ruin,

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as did some of the dwellings of the afflicted' | He has been appointed to serve the world, children, who learned and practised certain and the world does not regard him; the nethings in his house which he afterwards pro- groes, and (who could believe it?) the nenounced to be arts of Satan, and declared groes are named Cotton Mather in contempt to have been pursued without his knowledge of him; the wise, and the wise despise him; and with the cognisance of only his servants the company, by edifying conversation, and (John and Tituba, the Indian and the ne- in every company he is avoided and left gress). Barn, and well, and garden disap-alone; the female sex, and they speak basepeared in a sorry tract of rough ground, ly of him; his relatives, and they are such and the dwelling became a mere handful of monsters that he may truly say, 'I am a broken bricks. The narrative of the pas- brother to dragons; the Government, and tor's struggles and devices to retain his pul- it heaps indignities upon him; the Univerpit is very interesting; but they are not sity, and if he were a blockhead, it could related to our object here; and all we need not treat him worse than it does. He is to say is, that three sons and sons-in-law of serve all whom he can aid, and nobody ever Mrs. Nurse measured their strength against does anything for him; he is to serve all to his, and, without having said an intemper-whom he can be a helpful and happy minisate or superfluous word, or swerved from ter, and yet he is the most afflicted minister the strictest rules of congregational action, in the country: and many consider his afsent him out of the parish. He finally flictions to be so many miscarriages, and opined that evil angels had been permit- his sufferings in proportion to his sins. ted to tempt him and his coadjutors on There was no popularity or power for him, either hand; he admitted that some mistakes from the hour when he stood to see his had been made; and, said he, I do humbly brother Burroughs put to death on the Hill. own this day, before the Lord and his peo- He seems never to have got over his surple, that God has been righteously spitting prise at his own failures; but he sank into in my face; and I desire to lie low under deeper mortification and a more childish all this reproach,' &c.; but the remonstrants peevishness to the end. could not again sit under his ministry, and his brethren in the Province did not pretend to exculpate him altogether. He buried his wife against whom no record remains and departed with his children, the eldest of whom, the playfellow of the afflicted children, he had sent away before she had taken harm in the 'circle." He drifted from one small outlying congregation to another, neglected and poor, restless and untamed, though mortified, till he died in 1720. Mr. Noyes died somewhat earlier. He is believed not to have undergone much change, as to either his views or his temper. He was a kind-hearted and amiable man when nothing came in the way; but he could hold no terms with Satan; and in this he insisted to the last that he was right.



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Of only one of the class of express accusers of the afflicted'-will we speak; but not because she was the only one reclaimed. One bewildered child we have described as remorseful, and brave in her remorse; and others married as they would hardly have done if they had been among the profligate.' Ann Putnam's case mains the most prominent, and the most pathetic. She was twelve years old when the circle' at Mr. Parris's was formed. She had no check from her parents, but much countenance and encouragement from her morbidly-disposed mother. She has the bad distinction of having been the last of the witnesses to declare avision' against a suspected person; but, on the other hand, she has the honour, such as it is, of having Cotton Mather was the survivor of the striven to humble herself before the memory other two. He died in 1728; and he never of her victims. When she was nineteen was happy again after that last batch of ex- her father died, and her mother followed ecutions. He trusted to his merits, and the within a fortnight, leaving the poor girl, in genius he exhibited under that onslaught of bad health and with scanty means, to take Satan, to raise him to the highest post of care of a family of children so large that clerical power in the Province, and to make there were eight, if not more, dependent him-what he desired above all else - on her. No doubt she was aided, and she President of Harvard University. Mr. Upham presents us with a remarkable meditation written by the unhappy man, so simple and ingenuous that it is scarcely possible to read it gravely; but the reader is not the less sensible of his misery. The argument is a sort of remonstrance with God on the recompense his services have met with.

did what she could; but she died worn-out at the age of thirty-six. Ten years before that date she made her peace with the Church and society by offering a public confession in the meeting-house. In order to show what it was that the accusers did admit, we must make room for Ann Putnam's confession: :

I desire to be humbled before God for that sad and humbling providence that befell my father's family in the year about '92; that I, then being in my childhood, should, by such a providence of God, be made the instrument for the accusing of several persons of a grievous crime, whereby their lives were taken away from them, whom now I have just grounds and good reason to believe they were innocent persons; and that it was a great delusion of Satan that deceived me in that sad time, whereby I justly fear that I have been instrumental with others, though ignorantly and unwittingly, to bring upon myself and this land the guilt of innocent blood; though what was said or done by me against any person I can truly and uprightly say, before God and man, I did it not out of any anger, malice, or ill-will to any person, for I had no such thing against one of them; but what I did was ignorantly, being deluded by Satan. And particularly, as I was a chief instrument of accusing Goodwife Nurse and her two sisters, I desire to lie in the dust, and to be humbled for it, in that I was a cause, with others, of so sad a calamity to them and their families; for which cause I desire to lie in the dust, and earnestly beg forgiveness of God, and from all those unto whom I have given just cause of sorrow and offence, whose relations were taken away or accused. (Signed) Ann Putnam.”

This confession was read before the congregation, together with her relation, August 25, 1706; and she acknowledged it.

J. GREEN, Pastor.' (Vol. ii. p. 510.)

The most agreeable picture ever afforded by this remarkable community is that which our eyes rest on at the close of the story. One of the church members had refused to help to send Mr. Parris away, on the ground that the Village had had four pastors, and had gone through worse strifes with every one; but he saw a change of scene on the advent of the fifth. The Rev. Joseph Green was precisely the man for the place and occasion. He was young-only two-and-twenty and full of hope and cheerfulness, while sobered by the trials of the time. He had a wife and infants, and some private property, so that he could at once plant down a happy home among his people, without any injurious dependence on them. While exemplary in clerical duty, he encouraged an opposite tone of mind to that which had prevailed-put all the devils out of sight, promoted pigeon-shooting and fishing, and headed the young men in looking after hostile Indians. Instead of being jealous at the uprising of new churches, he went to lay the foundations, and invited the new brethren to his home. He promoted the claims of the sufferers impoverished by the recent social convulsion; he desired to bury not only delusions, but ill offices in silence;

and by his hospitality he infused a cheerful social spirit into his stricken people. The very business of seating' the congregation was so managed under his ministry as that members of the sinning and suffering families-members not in too direct an antagonism were brought together for prayer, singing, and Sabbath-greeting, forgiving and forgetting as far as possible. Thus did this excellent pastor create a new scene of peace and goodwill, which grew brighter for eighteen years, when he died at the age of forty. At the earliest moment that was prudent, he induced his church to cancel the excommunication of Rebecca Nurse and Giles Corey. It was ten years more before the hard and haughty mother church in Salem would do its part; but Mr. Green had the satisfaction of seeing that record also cleansed of its foul stains three years before his death. Judge Sewall had before made his penitential acknowledgment of proud error in full assembly, and had resumed his seat on the bench amidst the forgiveness and respect of society; Chief Justice Stoughton had retired from the courts in obstinate rage at his conflicts with Satan having been cut short; the physicians hoped they should have no more patients under the evil hand,' to make them look foolish and feel helpless ; and the Tragedy was over. There were doubtless secret tears and groans, horrors of shame and remorse by night and by day, and indignant removal of the bones of the murdered from outcast graves, and abstraction of painful pages from books of record, and much stifling of any conversation which could grow into tradition. The Tragedy was, no doubt, the central interest of society, families, and individuals throughout the province for the life of one generation. Then, as silence had been kept in the homes as well as at church and market, the next generation entered upon life almost unconscious of the ghastly distinction which would attach in history to Massachusetts in general, and Salem in particular, as the scene of the Delusion and the Tragedy which showed the New World to be in essentials no wiser than the Old.

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How effectually the story of that year 1692 was buried in silence is shown by a remark of Mr. Upham's-that it has been too common for the Witch Tragedy to be made a jest of, or at least to be spoken of with levity. We can have no doubt that his labours have put an end to this. It is inconceivable that there can ever again be a joke heard on the subject of Witchcraft in Salem. But this remark of our author brings us at once home to our own country, time, and experience. It suggests the ques

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