Halloween Compilation 2022

Witches in Sixteenth-Century Germany: The belief in witches, what they were accused of and why

‘The witch trials demonstrated fear of the power of women’s sexuality. The female witch was understood to be a product of woman’s excessive carnal lust who were affiliated with fornication and orgies with the Devil. This made them more susceptible to falling prey to his influence.’

Monstrous Women: Hair, Gender, and Sexuality in Early Modern German Prints

‘Shaving the head of a witch disarmed her main source of power, which was her sexuality, in the same way that adulteresses and sometimes prostitutes were also forced to have their hair shaved. The Malleus Maleficarum by Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger not only recommend this practice in Germany but noted that other countries ordered hair removal from the entire body.’

A Brief Historical Background to the Werewolf Myth in Sixteenth-Century Germany

‘While witches were also trialed for crimes while transformed into wolves, this was usually overshadowed by the main crime of sorcery and a pact with the Devil where cases of transformation were usually trialed as witchcraft. Despite the association of witchcraft with women, it was the minority male witch that was most frequently concurrently changed with transforming into a wolf.’

Myth-Making in Cannibalistic Portrayals of Native Americans

‘Rather than reflecting the reality of people found in America, the motif of man-eating foreigners recycled old stereotypes and folklore of cannibalistic outgroups to portray the natives as sub-human despite first-hand contact.’

Werewolves, Wolves, and the Intersections between Human and Animal

‘The wolf in sixteenth-century Germany posed a real threat both to inhabitants outside the city walls and their livelihoods. The increasing encroachment and disruption caused by wolves in human habitats meant they were attributed with supernatural qualities and equated them with human qualities of boldness and intelligence.’

Representations of Monsters in German Renaissance Prints

‘Psychologist Carl Jung has also discussed the importance of monsters, which reveal the hidden ‘otherness’ within the self. Half-human, half-animal composites served as a metaphor for the hidden and sometimes uncontrollable animal nature within.’

The Execution of Werewolf, Petter Stump: An analysis

‘Stump was not just a murderer convicted of killing 16 individuals, but predominately a child murderer with 13 of his victims being children. He was also accused of cannibalising them, eating out their brains in the Nuremberg and Augsburg broadsheets.’

Demons of David Teniers the Younger’s Alchemists

‘Follower of Paracelsusian alchemy who discovered the existence of multiple gasses, Jan Baptista van Helmont (1577-1644), came under virtual house arrest for much of two decades for his writings which brought him accusations of dabbling in black magic.’

Child Murderers within the wider Visual Culture of Infanticide and Cannibalism

‘The obsession with infanticide during this period was further reflected in stories and pictorial representations of Jews drinking the blood of baptised children, witches, werewolves, Turks, and others abducting and killing children and sometimes eating them or cooking them for magical potions.’

Imagining the New World: Representations of Cannibalistic Cynocephali in Lorenz Fries’ Uslegung der Mercarthen oder Carta Marina

‘Monsters were typically represented as half-human, half-animal composites so that people could safely project their innermost fears on these odd figures. It appears that what people most feared was the ‘demon’ within oneself – the ‘othered’ self.’

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s