discoverie of the
Witchcrafts of Margaret and Phillip
Flower, daughters of Joan Flower neere Bever
Caſtle: Executed at Lincolne, 1618-03-11March 11. 1618.
Who were ſpecially arraigned and condemned before Sir
Henry Hobart, and Sir Edward Bromley, Judges of Aſſiſe,
for confeſſing themſelves actors in the deſtruction
of Henry Lord Roſſe, with their damnable practiſes againſt
others the Children of Right Honourable
Francis Earle of Rutland.
Together with the ſeverall Examinations and Confeſſions of Anne
Baker, Joan Willimot, and Ellen Greene, Witches in Leiceſterſhire.
Printed at London by G. Eld for I. Barnes, dwelling in the long Walke
neere Chriſt-Church.16191619 .
The Wonderfull Discoverie of the Witch-craftes of Margraaret and Phillip Flower,Daughters of Joan Flower, by Beaver Castle, and executed at Lincolne the 1618-03-1111.of March. 1618.
My meaning is not to make any contentious Arguments about the diſcourſes, diſtinction or definition of Witchcraft, the power of Divells, the nature of Spirits, the force of Charmes, the ſecrets of Incantation, and ſuch like; becauſe the Scriptures are full of prohibitions to this purpoſe, and proclaimes death to the preſumptuous attemptersBters03B1v ters of the ſame: Beſides both Princes (yea our owne learned and moſt judicious King) Philoſophers, Poets, Chronologers, Hiſtoriographers, and many worthy Writers, have concurred and concluded in this; that divers impious and facinorous miſchiefes have beene effectuated through the inſtruments of the Divell, by permiſſion of God, ſo that the actors of the ſame have carried away the opinion of the world, to doe that which they did by Witchcraft, or at leaſt to be eſteemed Witches, for bringing ſuch and ſuch things to paſſe: For howſoever the learned have charactred delinquents in this kinde by titles of ſundry ſortes, and moſt ſignificant attributes; as Pythoniſſæ dealing with artificiall Charmes; Magi anciently reputed ſo, for extraordinary wiſedome and knowledge in the ſecrets of ſimples and hearbes; Chaldei, famous for Aſtronomy and Aſtrology; Necromancers for practiſing to raiſe dead bodies, and by them to foretell events of the earth; Geomantici, for converſing with Spirits, and uſing Inchantations;Geneth-04B2r Genethliaci, for preſuming on the calculating of Nativities, or if you will, aſſuming the credit of Figure-caſting; Ventriloqui, for ſpeaking with hollow voyces as if they were poſſeſſed with Divells; Veneſici, for dealing with Poyſon, and either killing or curing that way: For you muſt underſtand however the Profeſſors aforeſaid practiſe murther and miſchiefe, yet many times they Pretend cures and preſervation; with many others, carrying the ſhew of great learning and admired knowledge; yet have they all but one familier tearme with us in Engliſh called Witches. As for the conceit of wiſemen or wiſe woemen, they are all meerely coſeners and deceivers; ſo that if they make you beleeve that by their meanes you ſhall heare of things loſt or ſtolne, it is either done by Confederacy, or put off by protraction to deceive you of your money.
Only (as I ſaid before) there bee certaine men and women growne in yeares, and over-growne with Melancholly and Atheiſme, who out of a malicious diſpoſitionB2on05B2v on againſt their betters, or others thriving by them; but moſt times from a heart-burning deſire of revenge, having entertained ſome impreſſion of diſpleasſure, and unkindneſſe, ſtudy nothing but miſchiefe and exoticke practiſes of loathſome Artes and Sciences: yet I muſt needes ſay, that ſometimes the fained reputation of wiſedome, cunning, and to be reputed a dangerous and skilfull perſon, hath ſo prevailed with divers, that they have taken upon them indeed to know more then God ever afforded any creature, & to performe no leſſe then the Creator both of Heaven & earth; making you beleeve with Medea, that they can raiſe tempeſts, turne the Sunne into Blood, pull the Moone out of her Spheare, and ſaile over the Sea in a cockle ſhell, according to the Poet. Flectere ſi nequeam Superos, Acheronta monebo.If Art doe faile to move the Godsconſent unto my minde:I will the Divells raiſe, to doewhat they can in their kinde.But 06 B3r
But howſoever ſpeciall perſons are tranſported with an opinion of their owne worth, and prevailing in this kind, yet by lamentable experience we know too well, what monſtrous effects have bene produced, even to the horror of the hearers, and damnation of their owne ſoules by ſuch kinde of people: For as it is in the tale of the envious man, that put but one of his eyes to have his companion looſe both; ſo fareth it with them and worſe, to give away their ſoules to bee revenged of their adverſaries bodies, wherein the monſtrous ſubtilty of the Divell is ſo apparant, that it is wonderfull one way to relate, and lamentable another way to obſerve the ſame. For no ſooner ſhall ſuch motives poyſon the inward conceite or apprehenſion of ſuch damnable Caitiffes: But then ſteppeth forth the Divell, and not onely ſheweth them the way, but preſcribeth the manner of effecting the ſame, with facility and eaſineſſe, aſſuring that hee himſelfe will attend them in ſome familiar ſhape of Rat, Cat, Toad, B3 Birde 07 B3v Bird, Cricket, &c: yea effectuate whatſoever they ſhall demaund or deſire, and for their better aſſurance and corroboration of their credulity, they ſhall have palpable and forcible touches of ſucking, pinching, kiſſing, cloſing, colling and ſuch like: whereupon, without any feare of God or Man, knowledge of Chriſt, hope of redemption, confidence of mercy, or true beleefe that there is any other thing to bee looked after but this preſent World; according to that Athieſticall poſition of Epicurus. Ede, bibe, lude, poſt mortem nulla voluptas.Eat, drink, ſport, play and take thy pleaſures reſt:For after death, who knowes what ſhall be beſt.
They admit of thoſe execrable conditions of commutation of ſoules for the entertaining of the ſpirits, and ſo fall to their abhominable practiſes, continuing in the ſame till God laugh them to ſcorne, and will by no meanes ſuffer them to abuſe his holy name nor deceive others by their prophane lives any08B4r any longer: Witneſſe for the generall thoſe infinite Treatiſes of many of them convinced by Law, and condemned to death, to the fearefull example of all carnall and hypocriticall Chriſtians: but more eſpecially you may over-looke (if you pleaſe) that learned Diſcourſe of Dæmonologie, compoſed in forme of a Dialogue, by the High and mighty Prince, James by the grace of God, King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, &c. and printed (as I take it) according to the coppy of Edenburgh, 16031603. As alſo a Treatiſe of Witch-craft made by that learned Mr. Alexander Roberts Preacher at Kings-Line in Norfolke, 16151615. upon the diſcovery of the Witch-crafts of Mary Smith, wife of Henry Smith Glover, with her vocall contract betweene the Divell and her ſelfe, in ſollemne tearmes, and ſuch like impoſturing filthineſſe: with many hurts and miſchiefes which thereby ſhe procured: As alſo a certaine diſcovery 16111611. made by John Cotta Doctor of Phiſicke in Northampton of Empericks, woemen about ſicke perſons: Quack- 09 B4v Quackſalvers, and fugitives, which ſeeme to worke juggling wonders, Surgeons, Apothecaries, practiſers by ſpells, the true diſcovery of Witch-craft, eſpecially in the ſicke with many inſtances in that kind, Wiſards, and ſervants, of Phiſitions, who may bee called miniſtring helpers: To this hee hath added the Methodian learned deceiver, or hereticke Phiſition, Aſtrologers, Ephemerides-maiſters, Conjecters by urine, Travellers, and laſt of all, the true Artiſt his right deſcription and election. As alſo a Dialogue concerning Witches and Witchctraft, compoſed by George Gifford, Miniſter of Gods word in Maldon, 16031603. Wherein the cunning of the Divell is diſcovered, both concerning the deceiving of witches, and ſeducing of others into many great errors: As alſo an ancient diſcourſe of the fearefull practiſes of foure notorious French Witches, with the manner of their ſtrange execution. As alſo the ſeverall and damnable practiſees of Mother Sutton of Milton Miles in the County of Bedford, and Mary Sutton her Daughter,who10C1r who were arraigned, condemned, and executed for the ſame: As alſo 16121612. the wonderfull diſcovery of Witches in Lancaſhire, being 19. in number, notorious for many infamed actions, and convicted before Sr. James Altham, and S. Edward Bromley, Barons of the Exchequer, together with the arraignment and triall of Jennet Preſton, at Yorke, with her fearefull execution for the murthering of Mr. Lisker by Witch-craft; with infinite other relations concerning the generall conviction of Witches, and their practiſes, and condemnation of the particular opinion of ſome men, who ſuppoſe there bee none at all, or at leaſt that they doe not perſonally or truely effect ſuch things as are imputed unto them, and which out of ſome dangerous impreſſion of melancholly, vaineglory, or ſome other diſeaſed operation, they aſſume to themſelves by reaſon of a former contract with the Divell. And ſo much for the certainty of Story, and fearefulneſſe of the truth concerning the damnable practiſes of Witches and cunning of the Divell to deceive them.C But 11 C1v
But yet becauſe the mind of man may be carried away with many idle conjectures, either that woemen confeſſed theſe things by extreamity of torture, or that ancient examples are by this time forgotten (although the particulars are upon record, for the benefit of all poſteritie:) Or that they were beſides themſelves, or ſubject to ſome weake deviſe or other, rather to bring in queſtion the integrity of Juſtice; then to make odious the lives of ſuch horrible offendors. I have preſumed to preſent on the Stage of verity for the good of my Country & the love of truth, the late wofull Tragedy of the deſtruction of the Right Honourable the Earle of Rutlands Children, who to his eternall praiſe proceeded yet both religiouſly and charitably againſt the offenders, leaving their proſecution to the law and ſubmitting himſelfe, and deplorable caſe to the providence of God, who afflicteth his beſt ſervants with puniſhments, and many times, ſendeth extraordinary vengeance as well on the innocent, as the bad deſerver, to manifeſt his glory:There-12C2r Therefore by way of Caution I adviſe thee (gentle Reader) whoſoever thou art, to take heede how thou doeſt either deſpiſe the power of God in his Creatures, or vilipend the ſubtilty and fury of the Divell, as Gods inſtrument of vengeance, conſidering that truth in deſpight of gaine ſayers will prevaile, according to that principle:Magna eſt veritas & preualebit.
The Story followes.
After the Right Honourable Sr. Francis Manners ſucceeded his Brother in the Earledome of Rutland: and ſo not onely tooke poſſeſſion of Beaver Caſtle, but of all other his demeanes, Lordſhips, Townes, Mannors, Lands, and Revennues appropriate to the ſame Earledome: hee proceeded ſo honourably in the courſe of his life, as neither diſplacing Tenants, diſcharging ſervants, denying the acceſſe of the poore, welcoming of ſtrangers, and performing all the duties of a noble Lord, thatC2hee13C2v hee faſtened as it were unto himſelfe the love and good opinion of the Countrey wherein he walked the more cheerefully and remarkable, becauſe his honourable Counteſſe marched arme in arme with him in the ſame race; ſo that Beaver Caſtle was a continuall Pallace of entertainment, and a daily receptacle for all ſorts both rich and poore, eſpecially ſuch auncient people as neighboured the ſame; amongſt whom one Joane Flower, with her Daughters Margaret and Phillip were not onely relieved at the firſt from thence, but quickly entertained as Chair-women, and Margaret admitted as a continuall dweller in the Caſtle, looking both to the poultrey abroad and the waſh-houſe within dores: In which life they continued with equall correſpondency, till ſomething was diſcovered to the noble Lady, which concerned the miſdemeanour of theſe women. And although ſuch honourable perſons ſhall not want of all ſorts of people, either to bring the newes, tales, reports, or to ſerve their turne in all offices whatſoever; ſo that it may wellbe14C3r bee ſaid of them, as it is of great Kings and Princes, that they have large hands, wide eares, and piercing ſights to diſcover the unſwept corners of their remoteſt confines, to reach even to their furtheſt borders, and to underſtand the ſecrets of their meaneſt ſubjects: yet in this matter, neither were they buſie-bodies, flatterers, malicious politians, underminers, nor ſupplanters one of anothers good fortune; but went ſimply to worke, as regarding the honor of the Earle and his Lady, and ſo by degrees gave light to their underſtanding to apprehend their complaints. Firſt, that Joane Flower the Mother was a monſtrous malicious woman, full of oathes, curſes, and imprecations irreligious, and for any thing they ſaw by her, a plaine Atheiſt; beſides of late dayes her very countenance was eſtranged, her eyes were fiery and hollow, her ſpeech fell and envious, her demeanour ſtrange and exoticke, and her converſation ſequeſtred; ſo that the whole courſe of her life gave great ſuſpition that ſhe was a notorious Witch, yea ſome of herC3neigh-15C3v neighbours dared to affirme that ſhee dealt with familiar ſpirits, and terrified them all with curſes and threatning of revenge, if there were never ſo little cauſe of diſpleaſure and unkindneſſe. Concerning Margaret, that ſhee often reſorted from the Caſtle to her Mother, bringing ſuch proviſion as they thought was unbefitting for a ſervant to purloyne, and comming at ſuch unſeaſonable houres, that they could not but conjecture ſome miſchiefe between them, and that their extraordinary ryot & expences, tended both to rob the Lady, & to maintaine certaine deboiſt and baſe company which frequented this Joane Flowers houſe the mother, & eſpecially her youngeſt Daughter. Concerning Phillip, that ſhe was lewdly tranſported with the love of one Th: Simpſon, who preſumed to ſay, that ſhee had bewitched him: for hee had no power to leave her, and was as hee ſuppoſed marvellouſly altred both in minde and body, ſince her acquainted company: theſe complaints began many yeares before either their conviction, or publiqueap-16C4r apprehenſion: Notwithſtanding ſuch was the honour of this Earle and his Lady; ſuch was the cunning of this monſtrous woman in obſervation towards them; ſuch was the ſubtilty of the Divell to bring his purpoſes to paſſe; ſuch was the pleaſure of God to make tryall of his ſervants; and ſuch was the effect of a damnable womans wit and malitious envy, that all things were carried away in the ſmooth Channell of liking and good entertainment on every ſide, untill the Earle by degrees conceived ſome miſlike againſt her; and ſo, peradventure eſtranged himſelfe from that familiaritie and accuſtomed conferrences hee was wont to have with her: untill one Peate offered her ſome wrong; againſt whom ſhee complained, but found that my Lord did not affect her clamours, and malicious information, untill one Mr.Vavaſor abandoned her company, as either ſuſpicious of her lewd life, or diſtaſted with his owne miſliking of ſuch baſe and poore Creatures, whom nobody loved but the EarlesC4houſhold;17C4v houſhold; untill the Counteſſe miſconceiving of her daughter Margaret, and diſcovering ſome undecencies both in her life and neglect of her buſineſſe, diſcharged her from lying any more in the Caſtle, yet gave her 40.s. a bolſter, & a mattreſſe of wooll: commanding her to go home, until the ſlackneſſe of her repayring to the Caſtle, as ſhee was wont, did turne her love and liking toward this honourable Earle and his family into hate and rancor: whereupon deſpighted to bee ſo neglected, and exprobrated by her neighbours for her Daughters caſting out of dores, and other conceived diſpleaſures, ſhe grew paſt all ſhame and Woman-hood, and many times curſed them all that were the cauſe of this diſcontentment, and made her ſo loathſome to her former familiar friends, and beneficiall acquaintance.
When the Divell perceived the inſicious diſpoſition of this wretch, and that ſhe and her Daughters might eaſily bee made inſtruments to enlarge his Kingdome, and bee as it were the executioners of his vengeance;not18D1r not caring whether it lighted upon innocents or no, he came more neerer unto them, and in plaine tearmes to come quickly to the purpoſe, offered them his ſervice, and that in ſuch a manner, as they might eaſily command what they pleaſed: For hee would attend you in ſuch prety formes of dog, cat, or Rat, that they ſhould neither be terrified, nor any body elſe ſuſpicious of the matter. Upon this they agree, and (as it ſhould ſeeme) give away their ſoules for the ſervice of ſuch ſpirits, as he had promiſed them; which filthy conditions were ratified with abhominable kiſſes, and an odious ſacrifice of blood, not leaving out certaine charmes and conjurations with which the Divell deceived them, as though nothing could bee done without ceremony, and a ſolemnity of orderly ratification. By this time doth Sathan triumph, and goeth away ſatisfied to have caught ſuch fiſh in the net of his illuſions: By this time are theſe women Divels incarnate, and grow proud againe in their cunning and artificiall power, to doe what miſchiefe they liſted: ByDthis19D1v this time they have learnt the manner of inchantations, Spells and Charmes: By this time they kill what Cattle they liſt, and under the covert of flattery and familiar entertainment, keepe hidden the ſtinging ſerpent of mallice, and a venomous inclination to miſchiefe: By this time is the Earle and his familie threatened, and muſt feele the burthen of a terrible tempeſt, which from theſe womens Divelliſh deviſes fell uppon him, hee neither ſuſpecting nor underſtanding the ſame: By this time both himſelfe and his honourable Counteſſe, are many times ſubject to ſickneſſe and extraordinary convulſions, which they taking as gentle corrections from the hand of God, ſubmit with quietneſſe to his mercy, and ſtudy nothing more, then to glorifie their Creator in heaven, and beare his croſſes on earth.
At laſt, as mallice increaſed in theſe damnable Women; ſo his family felt the ſmart of their revenge and inſicious diſpoſition. For his eldeſt Sonne Henry LordRoſſe20D2r Roſſe ſickened very ſtrangely, and after a while died: his next named Francis Lord Roſſe accordingly, was ſeverely tormented by them, and moſt barbarouſly and inhumanely tortured by a ſtrange ſickneſſe not long after the Lady Katherine was ſet upon by their dangerous and divelliſh practiſes, and many times in great danger of life, through extreame maladies and unuſuall fits, nay (as it ſhould ſeeme, and they afterwards confeſſed) both the Earle and his Counteſſe were brought into their ſnares as they imagined, and indeed determined to keepe them from having any more children. Oh unheard of wickedneſſe and miſchievous damnation? Notwithſtanding all this did the noble Earle attend his Majeſty, both at New-market before Chriſtmas, and at Chriſtmas at Whitehall; bearing the loſſe of his Children moſt nobly, and little ſuſpecting that they had miſcarried by Witch-craft, or ſuch like inventions of the Divell, untill it pleaſed God to diſcover the villanous practiſes of theſe Woemen, and to command the Divell D2from21D2v from executing any further vengeance on innocents, but leave them to their ſhames, and the handes of Juſtice, that they might not onely be confounded for their villanous practiſes, but remaine as a notorious example to all ages of his judgement and fury. Thus were they apprehended about Chriſtmas, and carried to Lincolne Jayle, after due examination, before ſufficient Juſtices of the Peace, and diſcreete Majeſtrates, who wondred at their audacious wickednes, but Joane Flower the Mother before conviction, (as they ſay) called for Bread and Butter, and wiſhed it might never goe through her if ſhe were guilty of that whereupon ſhee was examined; ſo mumbling it in her mouth, never ſpake more wordes after, but fell downe and dyed as ſhee was carryed to Lincolne Goale, with a horrible excruciation of ſoule and body, and was buried at Ancaſter.
When the Earle heard of their apprehenſion, hee haſted downe with his brother Sr. George, and ſometimes examining them himſelfe, and ſometimes ſending them to others;at22D3r at laſt left them to the triall of Law, before the Judges of aſſiſe at Lincolne; and ſo they were convicted of murther and executed accordingly, about the 1618-03-1111. of March, to the terror of all the beholders, and example of ſuch diſſolute and abhominable Creatures, and becauſe you ſhall have both cauſe to glorifie God for this diſcovery, and occaſion to apprehend the ſtrangeneſſe of their lives, and truth of their proceedings: I thought it both meete and convenient to lay open their own Examinations and Evidences againſt one another, with ſuch apparrant circumſtances, as doe not onely ſhew the cauſe of their miſlike and diſtaſting againſt the Earle and his family; but the manner of their proceedings and revenges, with other particulars belonging to the true and plaine diſcovery of their villany and Witch-craft.
The Examinations of
Anne Baker, Joane Willimot,
and Ellen Greene;
Anne Baker. Joane Willimot. Ellen Green.
The Examination of Anne Baker of Bottesford in the County of Leiceſter Spinſter, taken 1618-03-01March, 1. 1618. by the Right Honourable, Francis Earle of Rutland, Sir George Manners Knight, two of his Majeſties Juſtices of the peace for the County of Lincolne, and Samuel FlemingDoctor of Divinitie, one of his Majeſties Juſtices of the peace for the County of Leiceſter aforeſaid.
She ſaith that there are foure colours of Planets, Blacke, Yellow, Greene, and Blew, and that Blacke is alwaies death, and that ſhee ſawe the Blew Plannet ſtrike Thomas Fairebarne, the eldeſt sonne unto William Fairebarne ofD4Botte-25D4v Bottesford aforeſaid by the Pinfold there, within the which time the ſaid William Fairebarne did beat her and breake her head, whereuppon the ſaid Thomas Faire-barne, did mend. And being asked who did ſend that Planet? anſwered it was not I.
Further ſhee ſaith, that ſhee ſaw a hand appeare unto her, and that ſhee heard a voyce in the ayre ſaid unto her: Anne Baker, ſave thy ſelfe, for to morrow thou and thy maiſter muſt be ſlaine: and the next day her maiſter and ſhee were in a Cart together; and ſuddainely ſhee ſaw a flaſh of fire, and ſaid her prayers, and the fire went away, and ſhortly after a Crow came and picked upon her cloathes, and ſhee ſaid her prayers againe, and bad the Crow go to whom he was ſent, and the Crow went unto her Maiſter, and did beat him to death, and ſhee with her prayers recovered him to life; but hee was ſicke a fortnight after, and ſaith, that if ſhee had not had more knowledge then her maiſter, both he and ſhee and all the Cattell had beene ſlaine.
Being examined concerning a Childe of Anne Stannidge, which ſhee was ſuſpected to have bewitchedwitch-26E1r witched to death; ſaith, the ſaid Anne Stannidge did deliver her childe into her hands, and that ſhee did lay it upon her skirt, but did no harme unto it; And being charged by the Mother of the childe, that upon the burning of the haire and the paring of the nailes of the ſaide childe, the ſaid Anne Baker came in and ſet her downe, and for one houres ſpace could ſpeake nothing; confeſſeth ſhee came into the houſe of the ſaid Anne Stannidge in great paine, but did not know of the burning of the haire and nailes of the ſaid Childe; but ſaid ſhe was ſo ſicke that ſhe did not know whither ſhe went.
Being charged that ſhee bewitched Elizabeth Hough, the wife of William Hough to death, for that ſhee angred her in giving her almes of her ſecond bread; confeſſeth that ſhe was angry with her and ſaid ſhe might have given her of her better bread, for ſhe had gone too often on her errands, but more ſhe ſaith not.
This Examinat confeſſeth that ſhee came to Joane Gylles houſe, her child being ſicke, and that ſhee intreated this Examinat to look on the Child, and to tell her whether it was forſpoken or no, andEthis27E1v this Examinate ſaid it was forſpoken; but when the ſaid child died ſhe cannot tell.
And being asked concerning Nortley carrying of his Child home unto his owne houſe, where the ſaid Anne Baker was, ſhee asked him, who gave the ſaid Child that loafe, he told her, Anthony Gill, to whom this Examinate ſaid, he might have had a Child of his owne if hee would have ſought in time for it; which words ſhe confeſſed ſhee did ſpeake.
Being blamed by Henry Mills in this ſort: A fire ſet on you, I have had two or three ill nights; to whom ſhee made anſwere, you ſhould have let me alone then, which ſhee confeſſeth.
The ſaid Anne Baker, 1618-03-02March 2.1618. confeſſed before Samuel Fleming Doctor of Divinitie, that about 3. yeares agoe, ſhee went into Northamptonſhire, and that at her comming back againe, one Peakes wife and Dennis his wife of Belvoyre told her that my young Lord Henry was dead, and that there was a glove of the ſaid Lord buried in the ground; and as that glove did rot and waſt, ſo did the liver of the ſaid Lord rot and waſt.Further 28 E2r
Further ſhee ſaid, 1618-03-03March 3. 1618. before Sr. George Manners Knight, and Samuel Fleming Doctor of Divinity, that ſhee hath a Spirit which hath the ſhape of a white Dogge, which ſhee calleth her good Spirit.
Samuel Fleming, teſt.
The Examination of Joan Willimot, taken the 1618-02-2828. of February, in the 16.yeare of the raigne of our Soveraigne Lord, James, over England King &c. and over Scotland the 52. before Alexander Amcotts Eſquire, one of his Majeſties Juſtices of the peace of the ſaid parts and County.
This Examinat ſaith, that Joane Flower told her that my Lord of Rutland had dealt badly with her and that they had put away her Daughter, and that although ſhe could not have her will of my Lord himſelfe, yet ſhe had ſpied my Lords Sonne and had ſtricken him to the heart. And ſhe ſaith, that my Lords Sonne was ſtriken with a white Spirit, and that ſhee can cure ſome that ſend unto her, and that ſome reward her for her paines, and of ſome ſhe taketh nothing.She 30 E3r
She further ſaith, that upon ---05Fryday night laſt, her Spirit came to her and told her that there was a bad woman at Deeping who had given her ſoule to the Divell: and that her ſaid Spirit did then appeare unto her in a more ugly forme then it had formerly done, and that it urged her much to give it ſomething, although it were but a peece of her Girdle, and told her that it had taken great paines for her, but ſhe ſaith that ſhe would give it nothing, and told it that ſhe had ſent it to no place but onely to ſee how my Lord Roſſe did, and that her Spirit told her that he ſhould doe well.
The Examination of the ſaid Joan Willimott, taken the 1618-03-02ſecond day of March in the yeare aboveſaid, before the ſaid Alexander Amcots.
This Examinate ſaith, That ſhee hath a Spirit which ſhee calleth Pretty, which was given unto her by William Berry of Langholme in Rutlandſhire, whom ſhe ſerved three yeares; and that her Maſter when hee gave it unto her, willed her to open her mouth, and hee would blow into her a Fairy which ſhould doe her good; and that ſhee opened her mouth, and he did blow into her mouth; and that preſently after his blowing, there came out of her mouth a Spirit, which ſtood upon the ground in the the ſhape and forme of a Woman, which Spirit did aske of her her Soule, which ſhee then promiſed unto it, being willed thereunto by her Maſter. Shee further confeſſeth, that ſhee never hurt any body, but did helpe divers that ſent for her,which32E4r which were ſtricken or fore-ſpoken: and that her Spirit came weekely to her, and would tell her of divers perſons that were ſtricken and foreſpoken. And ſhee ſaith, that the uſe which ſhee had of the Spirit, was to know how thoſe did which ſhee had undertaken to amend; and that ſhee did helpe them by certaine prayers which ſhe uſed, and not by her owne Spirit; neyther did ſhe imploy her Spirit in any thing, but onely to bring word how thoſe did which ſhe had undertaken to cure.
And ſhee further ſaith, that her Spirit came unto her this laſt night (as ſhe thought) in the forme of a woman, mumbling, but ſhe could not underſtand what it ſaid. And being aſked whether ſhee were not in a dreame or ſlumber when ſhee thought ſhee ſaw it, ſhee ſaid no, and that ſhe was as waking as at this preſent.
The Examination of Joane Willimot of Goadby in the County of Leiceſter Widdow, taken the 1618-03-1717. of March, 1618 by Sir Henry Haſtings Knight, and Samuel Fleming Doctor of Divinitie, two of his Majeſties Juſtices of the Peace of the ſaid County of Leiceſter.
She ſaith that ſhe tould one Cookes wife of Stathorne in the ſaid County Labourer, that John Patchett might have had his Child alive, if he would have ſought forth for it in time, and if it were not death ſtricken in her wayes, and that Patchets wife had an evill thing within her, which ſhould make an end of her, and that ſhe knew by her Girdle.
She ſaith further, that Gamaliel Greete of Waltham in the ſaid County Shepheard, had a Spirit like a white Mouſe put into himin34F1r in his ſwearing; and that if hee did looke upon any thing with an intent to hurt, it ſhould be hurt, and that hee had a marke on his left arme, which was cut away; and that her own ſpirit did tell her all this before it went from her.
Further ſhe ſaith, that Joane Flower, Margaret Flower and ſhee, did meet about a weeke before Joane Flowers apprehenſion, in Blackborrow-hill, and went from thence home to the ſaid Joan Flowers houſe, and there ſhe ſaw two ſpirits, one like a Rat, and the other like an Owle; and one of them did ſucke under her right eare, as ſhee thought: and the ſaid Joan told her, that her ſpirits did ſay that ſhee ſhould neyther be hanged nor burnt.
Further ſhe ſaith, that the ſaid Joan Flower did take up ſome earth and ſpet upon it, and did worke it with her finger, and put it up into her purſe, and ſaid though ſhee could not hurt the Lord himſelfe, yet ſhee had ſped his Sonne, which is dead.
The Examination of Ellen Greene of Stathorne in the County of Leiceſter, taken the 1618-03-1717. of March 1618. by Sir Henry Haſtings Kt: and Samuel Fleming D. of Divinitie, two of his Majeſties Juſtices of the Peace of his ſaid County.
Shee ſaith, that one Joan Willimot of Goadby came about ſixe yeares ſince to her in the Wowlds, and perſwaded this Examinate to forſake God, and betake her to the divel, and ſhe would give her two ſpirits, to which ſhee gave her conſent, and thereupon the ſaid Joan Willimot called two ſpirits, one in the likeneſſe of a Kitlin, and the other of a Moldiwarp: the firſt the ſaid Willimot called puſſe, the other hiſſe, hiſſe, and they preſently came to her, & ſhe departing left them with this Examinate, and they leapt on her ſhoulder, and the kitlin ſuckt under her right eare on her neck, & the Moldiwarp on the left ſide in the like place.After36F2r After they had ſuckt her, ſhee ſent the Kitlin to a Baker of that Towne, whoſe name ſhee remembers not, who had called her Witch & ſtricken her; and bad her ſaid ſpirit goe and bewitch him to death: the Moldiwarpe ſhee then bad go to Anne Dawſe of the ſame towne and bewitch her to death, becauſe ſhe had called this examinate witch, whore, jade, &c. and within one fortnight after they both dyed.
And further this Examinate ſaith, that ſhe ſent both her ſpirits to Stonesby, to one Williſon a husbandman, & Robert Williman a husbandmans ſonne, and bad the Kitlin goe to Williſon and bewitch him to death, and the Moldywarp to the other, and bewitch him to death, which they did; and within tenne dayes they dyed. Theſe foure were bewitched while this Examinate dwelt at Waltham aforeſaid.
About three yeares ſince, this Examinate removed thence to Stathorne, where ſhe now dwelt: upon a difference betweene the ſaid Willimot and the wife of John Patchet of the ſaid Stathorne Yeoman, ſhee the ſaid Willimot called her this Examinate to goe and touchF2the37F2v the ſaid John Patchets Wife and her Childe, which ſhee did, touching the ſaid John Patchets wife in her bed, and the childe in the Grace-wifes armes, and then ſent her ſaid ſpirits to bewitch them to death, which they did, and ſo the woman lay languiſhing by the ſpace of a moneth and more, for then ſhee dyed; the childe dyed the next day after ſhe touched it.
And ſhee further ſaith, that the ſaid Joane Willimot had a ſpirit ſucking on her, under the left flanke, in the likeneſſe of a little white Dogge, which this Examinate ſaith, that ſhe ſaw the ſame ſucking in Barley-harveſt laſt, being then at the houſe of the ſaid Joan Willimot.
And for her ſelfe, this Examinate further ſaith, that ſhee gave her ſoule to the Divell to have theſe ſpirits at her command; for a confirmation whereof, ſhe ſuffered them to ſuck her alwayes as aforeſaid about the change and full of the Moone.
The Examination of Phillip Flower, Siſter of Margaret Flower, and Daughters of Joane Flower, before Sr William Pelham, and Mr. Butler, Juſtices of the Peace, 1618-02-01Febr. 4. 1618. Which was brought in at the Aſſizes as evidence againſt her Siſter Margaret.
She ſaith, that her mother and her ſiſter maliced the Earle of Rutland, his Counteſſe, and their Children, becauſe her Siſter Margaret, was put out of the Ladies ſervice of Laundry, and exempted from other ſervices about the houſe, whereupon her ſaid ſiſter, by the commandement of her mother, brought from the Caſtle the right hand glove of the Lord Henry Roſſe, which ſhe delivered to her Mother; who preſently rubd it on the backe of her Spirit Rutterkin, and then put it into hot boyling water, afterward ſhee pricked it often, and buried it in the yard, wiſhing the Lord Roſſe might never thrive, and ſo her Siſter Margaret continued with her mother, where ſhee often ſaw the cat Rutterkin leape on her ſhoulder, ſucke her necke.
Shee further confeſſed, that ſhee heard her mother often curſe the Earle and his Lady, and thereupon would boyle feathers and blood together, uſing many Divelliſh ſpeeches and ſtrange geſtures.
The Examination of Margaret Flower, Siſter of Phillip Flower &c, about the 1618-01-2222. of January. 1618.
She ſaith and confeſſeth, that about foure or five yeare ſince her Mother ſent her for the right hand glove of Henry Lord Roſſe, afterward that her mother bade her goe againe into the Caſtle of Beaver, and bring downe the glove or ſome other thing of Henry Lord Roſſe, and ſhee askt what to doe? Her Mother replyed to hurt my Lord Roſſe: whereupon ſhe brought downe a glove, and delivered the ſame to her Mother, who ſtroked Rutterkin her Cat with it, after it was dipt in hot water, and ſo prickt it often, after which Henry Lord Roſſe fell ſicke within a weeke, and was much tormented with the ſame.
She further ſaith, that finding a glove about two or three yeares ſince of Francis Lord Roſſe, on a dung-hill, ſhe delivered it to her mother, who put it into hot water, and after tooke it out and rubd it on Rutterkin the Cat, and bad him goe upwards, and after her mother buried it in the yard, and ſaid a miſchiefe light on him, but he will mend againe.
Shee further ſaith, that her Mother and ſhee, and her Siſter agreed together to bewitch the Earle and his Lady, that they might have no more children: and being demanded the cauſe of this their mallice and ill will; ſhee ſaith, that about foure yeares ſincethe40F4r the Counteſſe (growing into ſome miſlike with her) gave her forty ſhillings, a bolſter, & a mattreſſe, and bad her lye at home, and come no more to dwell at the Caſtle; which ſhe not onely tooke in ill part, but grudged at it exceedingly, ſwearing in her heart to be revenged. After this, her Mother complained to the Earle againſt one Peake, who had offered her ſome wrong, wherein ſhe conceived that the Earle tooke not her part, as ſhee expected, which diſlike with the reſt, exaſperated her diſpleaſure againſt him, and ſo ſhe watched an opportunity to bee revenged: whereupon ſhe tooke wooll out of the ſaid mattreſſe, and a paire of gloves, which were given her by Mr. Vavaſor, and put them into warme water, mingling them with ſome blood, and ſtirring it together, then ſhe tooke the wooll and gloves out of the water, and rubd them on the belly of Rutterkin her Cat, ſaying the Lord and the Lady ſhould have more Children, but it would be long firſt.
Shee further confeſſeth, that by her mothers commandement, ſhee brought to her a peece of a handkercher of the Lady Katherine the Earles daughter, and her mother put it into hot water, & then taking it out, rubd it on Rutterkin, bidding him flye, and go; whereupon Rutterkin whined and cryed Mew: whereupon ſhee ſaid, that Rutterkin had no power over the Lady Katherine to hurt her.
The Examination of Phillip Flower, the 1618-02-2525. of February, 1618. before Francis Earle of Rutland, Francis Lord Willoughby of Ersby, Sr.George Manners, and Sr. William Pelham.
Shee confeſſeth and ſaith, that ſhee hath a Spirit ſucking on her in the forme of a white Rat, which keepeth her left breaſt, and hath ſo done for three or foure yeares, and concerning the agreement betwixt her Spirit and her ſelfe, ſhe confeſſeth and ſaith, that when it came firſt unto her, ſhee gave her Soule to it, and it promiſed to doe her good, and cauſe Thomas Simpſon to love her, if ſhee would ſuffer it to ſucke her, which ſhee agreed unto; and ſo the laſt time it ſuckt was on ---02Tueſday at night, the 1618-02-2323. of February.
The Examination of Margaret Flower, at the ſame time, &c.
Shee confeſſeth, that ſhe hath two familiar Spirits ſucking on her, the one white, the other black ſpotted; the white ſucked under her left breſt, and the blacke ſpotted within the inward parts of her ſecrets. When ſhee firſt entertained them ſhe promiſed them her ſoule, and they covenanted to doe all things which ſhe commanded them, &c.
Shee further ſaith, that about the 1618-01-3030. of January, laſt paſt, being ---06Saturday, foure Divells appeared unto her in Lincolne Jayle, at eleaven or twelve a clocke at midnight: The one ſtood at her beds feete, with a blacke head like an Ape, and ſpake unto her; but what, ſhee cannot well remember, at which ſhee was very angry becauſe hee would ſpeake no plainer, or let her underſtand his meaning: the other three were Rutterkin, Little Robin, and Spirit; but ſhee never miſtruſted them, nor ſuſpected her ſelfe, till then.
There is another Examination of the ſaid Margaret Flower, taken the 1618-02-04fourth of February, 1618. tending to this effect.
That being asked what ſhee knoweth concerning the bewitching of the Earle of Rutland, his wife, and children, ſhee ſaith, that it isGtrue,43G1v true, that her ſelfe, her mother, and ſiſter were all diſpleaſed with him, eſpecially with the Counteſſe, for turning her out of ſervice, whereuppon ſome foure yeare ſince, her mother commanded her to goe up to the Caſtle, and bring her the right hand glove of the Lord Henry Roſſe, the Earles eldeſt ſonne; which glove ſhe found on the ruſhes in the Nurcery, and delivered the ſame to her Mother, who put it into hot water, prickt it often with her knife, then tooke it out of the water, and rubd it uppon Rutterkin, bidding him height and goe, and doe ſome hurt to Henry Lord Roſſe, whereupon hee fell ſicke, and ſhorly after dyed, which her Mother hearing of, ſaid it was well: but after ſhee had rubd the glove on the Spirit Rutterkin, ſhee threw it into the fire and burnt it, &c.
Theſe Examinations and ſome others were taken and charily preſerved for the contriving of ſufficient evidences againſt them, and when the Judges of Aſſiſe came downe to Lincolne about the 1618-03-01–1618-03-07firſt weeke of March, being Sr. Henry Hobert, Lord chiefe Juſtice of the Common Pleas, and Sr. Ed: Bromley one of the Barons of the Exchequer, they were preſented unto them, who not only wondred at the wickedneſſe of theſe perſons, but were amazed at their practiſes and horrible contracts with the Divel to damne their own ſoules: And although the Right Honorable Earle had ſufficient griefe for the loſſe of his Children; yet nodoubt44G2r doubt it was 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 divelliſh contract, ſo was it as wonderfull to ſee their deſperate impenitency, and horrible diſtraction, according to the reſt of that ſort, exclaiming againſt the Divell for deluding them, and now breaking promiſe with them, when they ſtood in moſt need of his helpe.
Notwithſtanding all theſe aggravations, ſuch was the unparalleld magnanimity, wiſedome, and patience of this generous Noble-man, that hee urged nothing againſt them more then their owne confeſſions, and ſo quietly left them to judiciall triall, deſiring of God mercy for their ſoules, and of men charity to cenſure them in their condemnation: but God is not mocked, and ſo gave them over to judgement, nor man ſo reformed, but for the Earles ſake, they curſed them to that place which they themſelves long before had bargained for.
What now remaines (gentle Reader) but for thee to make uſe of ſo wonderfull a Story, and remarkable an accident, out of which, to draw to a concluſion thou maiſt collect theſe particulars. Firſt. that God is the ſupreame commander of all things, and permitteth wonderfull actions in the World, for the tryall of the godly, the puniſhment of the wicked, and his owne glory: of which man ſhall never attaine to know the reaſon or occaſion. Secondly, that the Divell is the meere ſervant andG2agent45G2v agent of God, to proſecute whatſoever hee ſhall command rather then give leave unto; limiting him yet thus farre in his own nature, that he can go no further then the bounds within which hee is hedged. Thirdly, that this God hath puniſhments, ad correctionem, that is to ſay, chaſticements of the godly, & ad ruinem, Videlicet, Judgements againſt the wicked, wherein yet man muſt diſclaime any knowledge, and forſake prejudicate opinions. For the very juſt ſhall be tried like gold, and no man exempted from caſtigation whom God doth love. Fourthly, that this Divell, though he bee Gods Inſtrument, yet worketh altogether by deceit: for as hee was a lyer from the beginning; ſo let no man truſt him, becauſe he aymeth at the confuſion of all Mankinde. Fiftly, that the wicked, (however they may thrive and proſper for a time) yet in the end are ſure to be payed home, either with puniſhment in this life or in the life to come, or both, as a finall reward of monſtrous impiety. Sixtly, that Man in his frailty muſt not preſume of proſperity; but prepare a kinde of ſtooping under the hand of God, when it pleaſeth him to ſtrike or puniſh us. Seaventhly, that there is no murmuring nor repining againſt God, but quietly to tolerate his inflictings, whenſoever they chance, of which this worthy Earl is a memorable example to all men and Ages. Eightly, that the puniſhments of the wicked are ſo many warnings to all irregular ſinners to amend their lives, and avoid the judgement to come, by penitency and newneſſe of life. Ninthly, thatthough46G3r though man could bee content to paſſe over blaſphemies and offences againſt the Statutes of Princes, yet God will overtake them in their own walks, and pull them backe by the ſleeve into a ſlaughterhouſe, as here you know the evidences againſt theſe people tooke life and power from their owne Confeſſions. Tenthly, and laſt of all, that private opinion cannot prevaile againſt publique cenſures: for here you ſee the learned and religious Judges cryed out with our Saviour, Ex ore tuo. Therefore though it were ſo, that neither Witch nor Divell could doe theſe things, yet Let not a Witch live, ſaith God, and Let them dye (ſaith the Law of England) that have converſation with ſpirits, and preſume to blaſpheme the name of God with ſpels and incantation. O then you ſonnes of men, take warning by theſe examples, and eyther divert your ſteps from the broad way of deſtruction, and inrecoverable gulph of damnation, or with Joſuahs counſell to Achan, bleſſe God for the diſcovery of wickedneſſe, and take thy death patiently, as the prevention of thy future judgement, and ſaving innocents from puniſhment, who otherwiſe may be ſuſpected without a cauſe.