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Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

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Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Mon Jan 21, 2008 2:03 am

http://www.angus.gov.uk/history/features/forfarwitches.htm


Last edited by Mel_Kim on Sun Jan 11, 2009 2:30 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Guest on Tue Jan 22, 2008 3:36 am

That's interesting Mel, thanks for posting it. It always surprises me that all it took was one person to accuse another of being a witch. There was mass fear of witches and it saddens me that so many innocent men and woman were executed just because they knew of herbal remedies or looked slightly different to others.

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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Tue Jan 22, 2008 3:42 am

Yes I agree 100% with you Sarah it makes me so sad to think what they went threw. Matthew Hopkins the Witch Finder was one of the worst a horrible man who did it for the money but I am sure most of them were sick and got a kick out of it but then again life was cheep. I was reading a book about where I live and they ducked women there all the time will have to dig the book out and have a look and post if there is anything interesting as its been a time since I read it. bigredgrin
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Guest on Tue Jan 22, 2008 3:55 am

Hopkins was evil but because of mass hysteria he was believed, the things he put people through just to prove they were a witch is unbelievable. If he was around today he would have been imprisoned for causing racial hatred.

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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:53 pm

Just read threw some of my book again about where I live and we had our own wise woman who was ducked and she nearly died from it. The book gives several accounts of ducking for all sorts of things both men and women were ducked and then sometimes stripped naked and made to wear a sack and then marched out of town. Just read also and this is sad that anyone caught having sexual relations before marriage etc would have to strip and wear a sheet and stand for three Sundays in a row and ask forgiveness of the congragation going into church. You know back in history that times were hard on people but its not untill you read individual cases etc that you see the true horror of it all. One case of this happening was where the local lord (the one that lived in the house which is now the museum) was caught I bet he never had to stand in the churchyard for 3 Sundays but she did. My sister told me a few weeks back that she found that our great great aunt was put in jail (I think she said about 1820) she found the court papers and she was inside for a month for walking out on her employer (nothing else) she was a servant both my sister and I feel that she was maybe being got at and to save her reptuation and all she fled its so sad there was no justice for the poor but even less for a woman.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Wed Jan 23, 2008 12:30 am

witches figure a lot in our local legends as well here in Essex. Im not far from Canewdon, which is famous for its witches and in particular its church. MH even paid it a visit. Hopkins caused much misery here too and stories of peoples treatment in those days are quite harrowing.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Wed Jan 23, 2008 1:32 am

Essex is quite famous for its witches I will have to look up that church Dan it sounds really interesting. I have been putting on clips from youtube ghost hunts today and the Richard Felix ones are so interesting I have not done anything at all houswork wise bigredgrin In part one of the Ghost Tours of Great Britain they are in Inverness (I know Inverness well as we lived not far from there) anyway the guide was saying that Scotland burnt 17,000 witches.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:32 am

Here is a link to an excellent panaramic photo of Canewdon church and its vicarage. The church is built on a hill and dominates the area. It looks lovely in the picture, but is bloody spooky at night. The old graves are dotted around the churchyard and new burials are still taking place. I have visited this place many times alone and with a local medium and although i dont feel comfortable there, i havent experienced anything unusual. It is best to avoid this church at Halloween as the legends are legendry !! the police often close the access roads to the place as all sorts of people and local hoodlums turn up to try and see the witches, by walking around the church a number of times. Its not just the church, but the entire local area is known for its involvement in witchcraft. A friend of mine who owns a farm in canewdon often finds witchcraft paraphanalia on his land.He is also a medium and is kept busy on his very active property. Another friend who also owns a farm in the same area has various supernatural occurances taking place on a regular basis.

http://panorama.org.uk/pages/canewdon.htm church picture

http://www.essexchurches.com/ excellent site for churches, look up Canewdon and my local church at Canvey Island just below it.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Wed Jan 23, 2008 11:19 pm

Dan there both lovely churches which if I am ever down that way will go and take a look at. It was interesting to note that Canewdon church has Roman bricks I wonder if there was some kind of fort or house there? Also interesting was that it said that as long as the 75 foot tower stands that there would always remain 6 witches in Canewdon. Your local church looks lovely and so unusual in design it reminds me of a Church that could be found in the USA. Have you many stories about the Churches? Or do you have any stories to do with your friends farm as it sounds really interesting place around there no wonder the police have to shut of the road at certain times of year.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Thu Jan 24, 2008 2:31 am

The canewdon church is surrounded by stories of ghosts and witches, but they are just old legends. I havent heard of any spooky goings on at my local one either. It is now a heritage museum and to be honest i have only been in there a few times. I have always liked the look of it though as you say its unusual. It may even have Dutch influence in the design as it was them that reclaimed Canvey from the sea hundreds of years ago. A lot of street and places here have dutch names.
I will try and post on here later regarding some of the goings on at the farm.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Thu Jan 24, 2008 3:18 am

Where my in laws live its all reclaimed marsh land and I wonder if it was the same Dutch chap who did your neck of the woods as well his name was Cornelius Vermuden, or Vermuyden there are several dutch influenced buildings where they live.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Thu Jan 24, 2008 4:46 am

it sounds like the same man. Cornelius is well known name here. We have a secondary school named after him. Where do your in laws live mel
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  Mel_Kim on Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:55 am

Well I never so it is the same man. They live in a place called Epworth (home of John Wesley which was famously haunted when Charles Wesley lived there, there is a thread on here about it)they get loads of American tourists in the summer) its the capital of the Isle of Axholme in Linconshire. Here is a bit more info on it:-

The parish is situated on one of a series of low-lying hills (reaching only to about 200feet) which protrude from the marsh surrounding them, until the beginning of the drainage by Vermuyden in 1626. Hence the name 'Isle' of Axholme. This swampy area was supposedly caused by the Romans, who are reputed to have cut down the surrounding forest areas to prevent raids by the Coritani, based on higher ground. Up until the time of the drainage, the main occupations of the parish were wild-fowling, fishing and pasturage with some arable farming on the higher land. The inhabitants, with those of the neighbouring parishes were referred to by Abraham de la Pryme as "being little better than heathens", and the independent spirit shown during the drainage disputes continues to the present day.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  magssdoc on Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:30 am

A lot of Dutch came over when one of the sisters of Charles I was married to one of their princes, of course another lot came over when William of Orange married Charles'es grandaughter Mary. They also helped drain parts of Norfolk too.
Is there much 'roman' influence around your area freespirit? I know that Colchester is the earliest Roman settlement so I wondered if that was a factor.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:03 am

Mags. The romans did have a few settlements on Canvey, as far as im aware. Salt extraction was the main reason for them to be here.Local treasure hunters often find roman items out in the mud a few hundred yards offshore when the tide goes out. The items are all found in the areas of the landing points that have long since been eroded by the tide.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  magssdoc on Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:08 am

Of course! I completely forgot that they would be in areas were salt was collected as they used it as a sort of currency.
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Re: Forfar Witch Hunts of the 1660's

Post  freespirit on Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:41 am

strangely, i dont know of any local ghost stories that involve romans. There arent many ghosts here at all. We have an old pub built right on the seawall , my local, next to a row of coastguard cottages.Its called the Lobster Smack and is quite well known for its ghost. Although i think the patrons wouldnt notice a ghost if it jumped out in front of them after 9pm.
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