Guide to the Witchcraft Collection, unbound manuscripts,
1560-1973

Collection Number: 4620

Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Cornell University Library

Contact Information:
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
2B Carl A. Kroch Library
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-3530
Fax: (607) 255-9524
rareref@cornell.edu
http://rmc.library.cornell.edu
Compiled by:
George Lincoln Burr, 1885-1938
Carl Anderson, Dorothy Grosser, Barbara Kauber, Elizabeth Mayer, 1977
Laurent Ferri, 2009
EAD encoding:
Martin Heggestad, May 2003
Laurent Ferri, November 2008-June 2009
Date modified:
Jude Corina, January 2017

© 2009 Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
Witchcraft collection, unbound manuscripts, 1560-1973.
Collection Number:
4620
Quantity:
3.7 linear ft. (242 items)
Forms of Material:
Documents, broadsides, letters, and other manuscripts.
Repository:
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library
Abstract:
Documents, broadsides, letters, and other manuscripts concerning witchcraft and witchcraft trials in Europe, mainly in Germany, through the early modern period, with a few documents from New England.
Language:
Collection material in English, Dutch, French,German,Latin


HISTORY OF THE COLLECTION

When, in the autumn of 1878, George Lincoln Burr -- still a sophomore at Cornell -- was entrusted by Cornell President White with the care of his historical library, the collection was allready well under way. White saw the witch-persecution as a particularly interesting form of fanaticism preceding the Enlightenment. He was a firm secularist, and, since his 1869 speech on “The Battle-Fields of Science,” the promoter of the so-called "conflict thesis" which postulated an intrinsic conflict between science and superstition, "scientific conclusions" and "theological control." In this never ending war of ideas, university libraries were viewed as arsenals. White used historical books and manuscripts in his history classes as early as 1872, and offered them to the curiosity of researchers. The period 1881-1895 proved the most fruitful for the expansion of the collection, with an increasing number of original and complete witch trial records (see for example, box 5, folders 1 and 8). When White was appointed as the first U.S. ambassador to a unified Germany (1897-1902), he found himself in a good position to buy from German booksellers. While witch hunts were seen all across early modern Europe, the epicenter of the phenomenon was Southwestern Germany and Thuringia. The peak years of witch hunts were from the 1560s to the 1670s, with more than 10,000 trials ending in executions. With family money and the proceeds from sales of his book "The History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom" (1896), A. D. White could afford outstanding documents, such as records of the witch-trial of Sister Maria Renata Sänger (or Singerin) von Mossau, charged with bewitching her fellow-nuns, whose execution was the last notorious witch burning in 1749 (box 5, folder 3). Her tragic case undermined the witch-hunt in Europe, and White commented upon it in chapter XVI of his book, "From Diabolism to Hysteria." He paid particular attention to the role played by jurists in fueling or denouncing the repression, for example in Rinteln, where Friedrich von Langenfeld wrote his "Cautio Criminalis" in 1631 (cf. box 4, folder 24), or in Ingolstadt, where the law faculty was particularly active (cf. 4620 Bd. Manuscript 35 ++).
In his effort to build a unique collection for Cornell Library, White could count on Burr, who once described himself jokingly as "a witch-hunter in the book shops." Burr had been captivated by the subject since he read an essay on the history of torture by Henry Charles Lea (1825-1909) at age fifteen. In 1885, while in Trier, he made a paleographic transcription of the trial of Dietrich Flade, ex-rector of the University and chief judge of the electoral court , who opposed the trials and especially the use of torture, and was arrested, tortured, strangled and burned for that reason in 1589 (Box 2, folder 8, and for the trial record, Bd. Manuscripts 4620 21++). Dietrich Flade, "the most eminent of the German victims of the persecution," became an icon to both White and Burr: he was a scholar who earned his fate through his attempt to check rationally and challenge the beliefs of his time. Having improved his paleographic skills in University of Leipzig and at the Ecole des chartes in Paris, Burr even started a doctoral dissertation on Dietrich Flade, and later published an article titled "The Fate of Dietrich Flade" (1891), conceived as a chapter of his never-written "History of Intolerance." In 1900, Burr initiated a correspondence with Joseph Hansen, the director of the Köln Stadtarchiv and a witchcraft historian who stood squarely within the positivist tradition. A Unitarian and a progressive thinker, Burr was convinced that witch hunting was not “the people’s fault,” and that clericalism -- more than "religion" -- bore the main responsibility for persecutions. Until his own death in 1938, he purchased original documents – though at a slower pace – and commissioned transcriptions of German manuscripts for the Cornell Library.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

Documents, broadsides, letters, and other manuscripts concerning witchcraft and witchcraft trials in Europe, mainly in Germany, through the early modern period, with a few documents from New England. The unbound manuscripts and letters in the Witchcraft Collection include very interesting letters of George Lincoln Burr and Andrew Dickson White with dealers and with each other, concerning purchases for the collection. The George Lincoln Burr Papers #14-17-22 are another precious source for the history of the Witchcraft collection as a whole, and the purchase of witch trial records in particular.
SUBJECTS

Names:
Bekker, Balthasar, 1634-1698.
Burr, George Lincoln, 1857-1938.
Faust, d. ca. 1540.
Flade, Dietrich, 1534-1589.
Grandier, Urbain, 1590-1634.
Killigrew, Thomas, 1612-1683.
Löher, Hermann, fl. 1676.
Loos, Cornelius, ca. 1546-1595.
Sänger, Maria Renata von Mossau, ca. 1680-1749.
Trithemius von Spanheim, Johannes 1462-1516.
White, Andrew Dickson, 1832-1918.

Subjects:
Witchcraft--Germany.
Witchcraft--France.
Witchcraft--Europe.
Witchcraft--New England.
Witchcraft and sex.bib
Trials (Witchcraft)--Germany.
Trials (Witchcraft)--Europe.
Trials (Witchcraft)--United States.
Catholics--Theology.
Loudun (France)--Church history--17th century.
Puritans--United States.
Church and state--Catholic Church--History.
Church and state--History.
Women--Germany--History.
Women--Europe--History.
Women--United States--History.
Sex discrimination against women--Germany--History.
Sex discrimination against women--Europe--History.
Sex discrimination against women--United States--History.
Religion and law.
Inquisition.
Demoniac possession.
Magic.
Occult.
Torture.
Manuscripts--Collectors and collecting.


INFORMATION FOR USERS

Cite As:
Witchcraft collection, unbound manuscripts, #4620. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.

RELATED MATERIALS

George Lincoln Burr papers, #14-17-22
This guide covers only a small portion of the Witchcraft collection. There is also a large collection of books (ca. 3000 v.) held in the repository, ranging in date from 1487 onward.

CONTAINER LIST

Date
Description
Container
Manuscripts and Documents
A-B
circa 1850
Aa, Jacob van der, 1792-1857
Box 1 Folder 1
2 leaves
Manuscript copy of his article on Balthasar Bekker in his "Nieuw biographisch... van Nederlandsche dichters" document.
n.d. (17c.)
An den Teufel
Box 1 Folder 2
2 leaves
Manuscript copy of a poem.With manuscript annotation by G.L. Burr and partial transcription by LF
1615
Anschütz, Anna, Defendant...
Box 1 Folder 3
48 leaves
Fragments of trial records, containing accusations of witchcraft against a woman in [Zella-]Mehlis, Thuringia (Germany).
1743
Arcanum Arcanorum
Box 1 Folder 4
9 leaves
Manuscript copy of a Gnostic text.
1899-1913
Baer, Joseph and Co., Librarians and Antiquarians in Frankfurt am Main
Box 1 Folder 5
1 leaf + 2 leaves + 2 leaves + 1 leaf
Letters to George L. Burr, Cornell University [Library], documenting the purchase of documents of witch trial records (concerning Sister Maria Renata Sänger or Singerin as well as Hans Loder's wife, 17th century).
1907
Baer, Joseph and Co., Booksellers in Frankfurt am Main (Germany)
Box 1 Folder 6
1 leaf
Typed letter to A.D. White [then U.S. Ambassador in Berlin] offering him witch trial records for purchase(Bamberg, 1617-31)
February 1900
Basler Buch- und Antiquariatshandlung, Booksellers in Basel (Switzerland)
Box 1 Folder 7
1 leaf and 1 leaf
Two manuscript letters to George L. Burr about the purchase of witch trial records (Alsace, 1607-75), one with envelope
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 8
1 leave + 5 leaves
List of works concerning Bekker, plus a manuscript copy of the poem "Aan aalems vreede schrijver ddomienee Zaalomon val til", signed "Baltasar Bekker" (?)
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 9
1 leaf
Manuscript copy of the poem "Lof Geedight op den Roem der kristenen Geemaaakt door", signed "Baltasar Bekker" (?)
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 10
1 leaf
Manuscript copy of "Bijschriften voorkomende in de gedichten uit het stamboek..."
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 11
2 leaves
Manuscript copy of the poem "Lof Geedight op het euwig evangelium Gemmakt Door Joohannis Vlak prediekant tee Zutven", signed "Baltasar Bekker"; the signature was actually appended by the copyist.
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 12
1 leaf
Manuscript copy of the poem "Lof Geedight over het verklaare van den eerste Brief van Petrus door Doomiene Golieus, prediekant tot hindeloopen" in Dutch, signed "Baltasar Bekker"; the signature was actually appended by the copyist
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 13
2 leaves
Manuscript copy "UItrreksl uit het Kort bericht" [1692], signed "Baltasar Bekker"; the signature was actually appended by the copyist
undated
Bekker, Baltasar
Box 1 Folder 14
2 leaves
Manuscript copy poem "Brief aan zijn huisrouw, Frouk Fullenia" 1691), signed "Baltasar Bekker"; the signature was actually appended by the copyist
[1628]
Braun, Marta, defendant
Box 1 Folder 15
6 leaves
Partial record of a witch trial against Marta Braun zu Mergentheim, 1628 [copy]. The original document is kept in the Hohenloe-Zentralarchiv (archive of the Hohenloe) in Neuenstein, Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg (Germany), Bestand GA 55
1679
"Processus Inquisitorius c[contra] Agnes Brussen, Michel Hoogens [Witwe] zum Grandshagen"
Box 1 Folder 16
34 leaves
Manuscript record of a witch trial which took place in Treptow (Pomerania). The widow was accused of having song hymns to the devil (trial "in cantationis"). The record includes the testimony of her neighbors, her own inquisition, letters from the local clergy, an order for torture from the Law Faculty of the University of Greifswald, her confession, and the sentence, according to which she was burnt.
1689
"Acta Inquisitoria Catherinen Büchlers, die sogennante alte Bäckerin zu Grossmühlingen in puncto anno 1689"
Box 1 Folder 17
128 leaves
Complete manuscript record of a witch trial, Anhalt-Bernburg region, 1688-9, 240 p. in folio sewn into one fascicle. The former baker was accused of adoring the devil and having poisoned a neighbor (trial "in venesicii"). The record includes the testimony of her neighbors, her own inquisition, the fact that she was left to the torturer to be interrogated harshly ("to death if necessary"), two personal interventions from the Prince Carl Wilhelm von Anhalt, and the sentence, according to which she was eventually acquitted in the absence of evidence, and released after almost two years.
1650
"Gela Hermann Büder Wittwe zu Rodenbach, Klägerin, Contra die Gemeindte deselbsten und sonderlich [contra] Johannes Krüdelbach und Johann Hansen [von dem] sleigen Ort, Bezüchtigung Zauberei belangend"
Box 1 Folder 18
29 leaves
Trial record of a witch trial in Rodenbach, Hesse, Germany, 1650. The widow was accused of being a witch by two men of the same village. The document consists of her accusers' statements and her answers. Accompanied by a note by George L. Burr: "This manuscript was bought for the President White Library in the winter 1898-99"
1886
Burr, George Lincoln, 1857-1938
Box 1 Folder 19
15 leaves
Original text of a lecture titled "On the Loos Manuscripts," on witch hunting and the persecution for heresy in Europe ("that strange nightmare that fell upon the world just as it woke from the long sleep of the Middle Ages") delivered by Burr on October 6, 1886, at a meeting of the Historical and Political Science Association; with a full transcription.
C-F
1883
"Dietrich Flade" [a famous witchcraft trial of the 16th century]
Box 2 Folder 1
Included are Prof. Carpenter's article from "The Library of Cornell University," no.5 of April 1883, as well as notes.
[19th century]
"Discours sur la mort et condemnation de Charles de Franchillon, Baron de Chenevières, exécuté en Place de Grève pour crime de sortilège et de magie le 14 May 1626"
Box 2 Folder 2
10 leaves
Manuscript copy of a document kept in the Bibliotheque Nationale, Impr. Ln2 4768
1613
"Criminal Prozess" against Catarina Drencken, held in Neuerburg, Luxembourg
Box 2 Folder 3
4 leaves
Fragment of a withcraft trial record: preliminary statement by the prosecutor and testimony of one witness.
1933-1935
Ewen, Baron Cecil L'Estrange, 1877-1949
Box 2 Folder 4
2 leaves and 2 leaves and 2 leaves
Three letters to George Burr by Ewen, the author of "Witch Hunting and Witch Trials: The Indictments for Witchcraft From the Records of 1373 Assizes Held for the Home Circuit A. D. 1559-1736," 1929.
1653
Extract Pfarr Protocols, Tennenberg, Germany
Box 2 Folder 5
2 leaves
Statement by several "witnesses" that a woman named Stolz "turns herself into a wolf, and very often into a bear too"
August 23, 1634 [?]
"Grandier est mort"
Box 2 Folder 6
1 leaf
Autograph letter signed "F," sent from Poitiers. Describes the last days of Urbain Grandier, who was publicly burned in Loudun on August 18, 1634, after being convicted of witchcraft, specifically for his involvement in the Loudun Possessions. The letter reports certain "symptoms" of Grandier's alleged adoration of the Devil.
1663
"Inquisition. Acta Contra Hans Fiedler, und Margaretha dessen Eheweib, zu Schönau, wegen verdächtiger Hexerei"
Box 2 Folder 7
122 leaves
Manuscript containing the preliminary statement, the testimony of seventeen "witnesses," as well as the trial proper of Hans and his wife, who was tortured to death in Schleusingen, Thuringia.
[1589]
"Transcript of the Trial for Witchcraft of Dr. Dietrich Flade of Trier, 1589"
Box 2 Folder 8
67 leaves
Paleographic transcription made by Burr in 1882 of the minutes of a trial record (Trier Stadtbibliothek Hs. 1533a/171). The Witch trials of Trier (Germany) in the years from 1581 to 1593 led to the death of about three hundred and seventy people, including Judge Dietrich Flade, ex-rector of the university and dean of its law school, who opposed the persecutions and especially the use of torture. He was accused of participation in a sabbat where he had arrived in a silver carriage drawn by four dark horses. The document is mentioned in President White's 1896 book(A History of the Warfare of Science With Theology..., I, p. 357, Rare BL 245 .W58 1896).
circa 1630
"Fragen... Contra Elsa Misseler"
Box 2 Folder 9
2 leaves
Summary of a trial record [Hexenprozess in Flamersheim, Germany]
1825
Furman, Gabriel, 1800-1854
Box 2 Folder 10
64 pages
Contains the manuscript of an essay, "American Legends, Ghost Stories, and Witchcraft" written by Judge Furman of Brooklyn in 1825.
undated [circa 1820]
Furman, Gabriel, 1800-1854
Box 2 Folder 11
"American Superstitions"
17 sets of notes.
G-K
1654-1665
[Litigation concerning the payment of court costs in Tennenberg]
Box 3 Folder 1
18 leaves
Concerns Hanswolf Gasserstedt's payment of court costs for his wife, Judith Rommelmann, who had been banished for witchcraft.
1689
Gause, Anna, defendant
Box 3 Folder 2
18 leaves
Partial transcript and notes on the manuscript of a trial. Defendant was Anna Gause, the 70-year-old widow of Klaus Zauman, accused of being a witch and strangled.
Related Materials: Complete record, call number: 4620 Bd. Manuscript. 25 ++
n.d.
Der Geistliche Doktor Faust: Eine Citation
Box 3 Folder 3
8 leaves
Partial transcript of esoteric notes.
1914
Godard, George Seymour, 1865-1936 [State Librarian of Connecticut]
Box 3 Folder 4
Typed list, with the letter of transmittal signed by Godard.
List of material on witchcraft in the Connecticut State Library (31 articles)
September 13, 1710
Good, William
Box 3 Folder 5
Autograph letter signed to the Honourable Commitee. Document concerning "the destruction of [his] poor family" since Good's wife, Sarah, was executed in Salem in July 1692 "upon the account of supposed witchcraft"; also mentioned are "a sucking child [who] died in prison before the mother's execution" and another "child of four of five years old [who] was in prison seven or eight months and being chained in the dungeon was so hardly terrified that she [now] has no reason to govern herself." Included are two letters from the secretary of the Essex Intitute, 1913, as well as an auction catalog, in which the letter is described, sale item # 805.
1629
[Greiess, Eva, defendant]: "Zwischen Domminus Wilhlem Kurfürstlich Herrschaft Neuerburg... und Feminus Eva"
Box 3 Folder 6
2 leaves
Autograph document signed. Advice of the Luxembourg authorities, in the name of the Grand-Duke, reporting the torture, confession, and execution by "strangulation by naked hands" of an alleged witch. With partial transcription and translation.
[1665]
Hall, Ralph, defendant
Box 3 Folder 7
4 leaves
Autograph document [copy by Judge Gabriel Furman]. One of the two copies of the bill of indictement for the trial of Ralph Hall and his wife, annotated by Furman, according to whom this was "the only trial for that offence in [the state of New York]."
1906
Halle Antiquariat
Box 3 Folder 8
2 leaves
Autograph letter signed from a German bookseller to Burr. Offers him "Protokolle von Hexenprocessen zu Flammersheim...aus den Jahren 1629-30" for purchase.
1933
Happe, Hans
Box 3 Folder 9
Partial transcription and bibliographic description of Happe's treaty on alchemy, call number: 4620 Bd. Manuscript 77
[1669]
Harrisson, Katherine, of Hartford,Connecticut
Box 3 Folder 10
7 leaves
Copy of trial records made by Burr, with his annotations.
1621
Hencke, Barbara, defendant [Luxembourg]
Box 3 Folder 11
2 leaves
Judicial order for the torture of "Barbara, Beclagtin und Behaeftin," on the charge of witchcraft.
[1627]
Henot, Katharina
Box 3 Folder 12
18 leaves
Photostat copies of records of a famous witchcraft trial that took place in Cologne, with a letter from Dr. Hansen, Historisches Archiv, Köln, to Burr.
1621
[Hexenprozess, Luxembourg]
Box 3 Folder 13
Fragment of a trial record
1686-7
"Criminal Acta über Agnes Hinterreger und seiner Kinder [Christian, Thomas, und Einhard] in Crimine Maior de Anno 1687"
Box 3 Folder 14
50 leaves
Incomplete record of a witchcraft trial held in Carinthia, Austria
[1591]
James I, King of England
Box 3 Folder 15
4 leaves
Tolbooth speech as to witchcraft [copy]. Copy made by Lucy Dreicker in 1929. Attached is a letter requesting payment from Burr.
1662
Keiner, Osanna, defendant
Box 3 Folder 16
18 leaves
Two documents relating to her trail for witchcraft: one describing the "great tumult" which took place in her cell and was supposedly caused by supernatural beings, and the other attributing her death under torture to strangulation by the devil.
[1635?]
Killigrew, Thomas, 1612-1683
Box 3 Folder 17
1 l.
"The Copye of a Letter Written by Mr. Thomas Killigrew." Contemporary manuscript copy of a well-known account of the possession of the nuns of Loudun, composed as a letter by the future dramatist Thomas Killigrew, then aged 23, during his tour of France.
Related Materials: Other manuscript copies are Bodleian Library, Ashmole manuscript 800, art. iii, ff. 21-27r, Magdalene College, Cambridge, Pepys Library 2099(3), ff. 10r-25v, and the British Library, Add. manuscript 27402, ff. 69r-71v. Source: J. Lough and D.E.L. Crane, "Killigrew and the Nuns of Loudun: The Text of a Letter of 1635," Durham University Journal, p. 259-68.
undated
"De Klinkende bel"
Box 3 Folder 18
3 leaves
Copy of a Dutch poem composed in 1662.
1687?
Knooulton or Knowlton, Thomas, and others: Deposition against Rachel Clinton for Practice of Witchcraft
Box 3 Folder 19
1 l.
One of the few remaining accounts of a witch hunt before the trials of 1692-1693. From the Phillips Collection (Harbin Papers), with a full transcription. "It demonstrates that neighborood suspicion of Rachel Clinton long antedated her trial in connection with the Salem outbreak" (John Putnam Demos, Entertaining Satan, 1983, p. 20. The author observes that the heading on this document, "Witchcraft 1687," is in a separate hand and was probably added at some later time.)
1699
Kort-bondige... beschryving van Moses, in het boek der Scheppinge
Box 3 Folder 20
4 leaves
Manuscript review of an article, by Johannes Roman, Boekverkooper.
1662
Krämer, Margaretha, defendant
Box 3 Folder 21
55 ll.
[Trial for Witchcraft in Suhl, Germany]. Various documents relating to the trial of a widow accused of being a witch ("der Hexerey wegen"), who confessed before being tortured, was sentenced to death by fire -- sentenced commuted to death by decapitation by the Duke Moritz von Sachsen-Zeitz, Administrator des Stifts Naumburg, after she showed repentance (rescriptum.)
Related Materials: Complementary source: Bundesarchiv Koblenz, FSg.2/1-F Film Nr. 39 Suhl.
1838?
K[rist?], Bekker's portrait]
Box 3 Folder 22
1 l.
Copy of a short notice issued in the "Nederlansch Archief"
1662
Kühn, Sebastian
Box 3 Folder 23
1 l.
"Dass den vier Herrn Geistlichen und dem Kirchner zu Schleusingen der Herr Ambtschreiber Sebastian Bentzinger 2 fl[orins] 5 g[ulden] 3 d[ucats] von Irmel Wagnerin zu Breitenbach... entrichtet und bezahlt [die ich richtig bekommen habe]." Sebastian Kühn certifies to the payment to himself, as well as to four other clergymen or sacristans, of a sum taken from the estate of Irmel Wagnerin, who had been executed for witchcraft after examination by those "skilled theologicians [periti]".
L-P
circa 1630
"[Prozess] gegen die Witwe Lamkers, Maria, zu Neuerburg [Luxemburg], Lasters Zauberey halber"
Box 4 Folder 1
2 leaves
Deposition against Maria Lamkers made by the city attorney "ex officio."
1635
Laubardemont, Jean de, 1590-1653, to Cardinal de Richelieu
Box 4 Folder 2
1 leaf
Account by Laubardemont [a Capuchin monk and Richelieu's agent] of the successful exorcism of the Ursuline Prioress of Loudun, one year after the execution of Urbain Grandier. A fifth demon has been expelled from the body of the nun, leaving the name "Joseph" on her left hand.
undaetd [circa 1880]
Lea, Henry Charles, 1825-1909
Box 4 Folder 3
79 leaves
Transcriptions of clippings collected by Lea, which he lent to Burr for copying (1889). Includes "Russian Witches," "Strange French Stories," "Superstition in Western Kentucky," "Pennsylvania Witchcraft: A Curious Case in Dauphin County," "Mojave Indians Sacrifice a Squaw accused of Witchcraft," etc. Burr worked to complete the manuscript of Lea's "Materials for a Study of Witchcraft."
1899
Leitschuh, Dr. Friedrich, to Joseph Baer and Co., forwarded to George L. Burr
Box 4 Folder 4
2 leaves
Concerns his offer to sell the documents of the witch trial of Sister Maria Renata Sänger and Hans Loder's wife [cf. these names below.]
circa 1621
Leonhardtz, Hupritch, d. 1621, defendant
Box 4 Folder 5
20 leaves
"Verbal [confrontation] zwischen Heinrich Stein aus Oberweis [in Luxemburg], formal Clergen, und Hupricht Leonhardtz aus Oberweis Lasters Zauberei halber inquirirt [ = subject to an Inquisition trial for witchcraft]."
undated
"Lijst der werken van B. Bekker..."
Box 4 Folder 6
2 leaves
Besides Bekker's own works, the list enumerates some 170 titles.
circa 1710
Sentença de Maria Antonia de Liveyra [contemporary copy] Trial Record (fragments)
Box 4 Folder 7
10 leaves
Report of the trial of an alleged witch who was engaged in treating kinds of human and animal diseases, using grimaces and magical signs, and pretending to "swallow the illness." She confessed to all the charges against her and was burnt.
1584-1585
Loder, Hans, defendant
Box 4 Folder 8
2 leaves
Nine fragments of a trial record held in Arnstein, all addressed to the Prince-Bishop of Würtzburg.
1557?
Luxenburger, Johann, and Sesaner, Friedrich of Luttum (Germany), "Dreiforcher Höllenzwang"
Box 4 Folder 9
8 leaves and 1 sketch
Manuscript copy of a "Höllenzwang" or book of magic containing invocations and charms intended to compel the demons to do one's will. It draws its inspiration from Dr. Faust's Wunder-Buch (1501) and includes several drawings.
1600
Margareth of Körperich-Neuerburg (Luxembourg), defendant
Box 4 Folder 10
2 leaves
Her confession that she was led to become a witch by her grandmother at age 4.
undated
Mafteah Shelomo/Clavicula Salomonis/Book of the Key of Solomon
Box 4 Folder 11
2 leaves
A German short copy of one of the most famous books of magic.
1619-1620
Marg[a]reta Martin of Löwenberg (Schlesien, Germany), defendant
Box 4 Folder 12
2 leaves
Order to torture this woman, who was accused of magical practices and sexual intercourse with the devil, followed by a report of her unexplained death.
[1692]
Massachussets [Colony] Courts, Essex County -- Salem Witch Trials
Box 4 Folder 13
1 leaf (2 copies -- facsimiles)
Letter from Judge William Stoughton to George Corwin, the sheriff of Essex County, ordering the execution of Bridgett Bishop, who was convicted of witchcraft, plus answering letter of Corwin confirming that the execution was completed.
Copy from the Massachusetts State Archives.
[1692]
Miller, Johannes, Anglican minister
Box 4 Folder 14
2 leaves
Answer to the questions posed by Governor Joseph Dudley of New York (text in Latin).
undated
Nederlandse hervorkomde kerk...
Box 4 Folder 15
2 leaves
Copy of an article on Bekker.
undated
Negen deelen voor en tegen B[altasar] Bekker
Box 4 Folder 16
2 leaves and 3 leaves
List of pamphlets [1691-99] relating to the "Bekker controversy" (the furor over De Betoverde Veereld, a pamphlet published in 1691 in which Bekker attacked witch-hunting.)
1973
New York State University in Binghamton
Box 4 Folder 17
2 leaves
Printed program for the conference "Witchcraft and the Occult in the Middle Ages and Early Renaissance" organized by the Center for Medieval and Early Renaissance Studies.
1908
Nicholson. J.W., to Burr
Box 4 Folder 18
2 leaves
Informs Burr that he has "a facsimile copy" of the trial of Grace Sherwood.
undated
Novelles voor en tegen B[altasar] Bekker
Box 4 Folder 19
2 leaves
List of 117 titles of pamphlets about Bekker (1691-1692).
1590
Nürnbergische Theologen Ainhellige Antwort über etliche Puncten, die Unhulden [=demonic creatures] betreffent auff die Supplication des Raths zu Weisenburg... wie sie sich mit iren Hexen und Unhulden verhalden sollen, und was in Göttlichen heiliger Schrifft davon gegründet sey"
Box 4 Folder 20
16 leaves
Report and recommendations on the matter of witchcraft and witch persecution, written by six pastors from Nuremberg at the request of the local authorities in Weisenburg, 30 miles below Nuremberg.
Related Materials: G.L. Burr, "The Literature of Wichcraft," in Papers of the American Historical Association, 1889, p. 61.
undated
Onder het Monument von B. Bekker staat alz vogt
Box 4 Folder 21
1 leaf
Inscription on Bekker's monument in Amsterdam, and list of portraits of him.
1730
Pennsylvania Gazette
Box 4 Folder 22
4 leaves
Copy made by Judge Gabriel Furman of an article issued on October 22, 1730 and dealing with a trial for witchcraft.
1613
Picken, Magdalen, of Neuerburg (Luxembourg), defendant
Box 4 Folder 23
4 leaves
The first examination and testimony of seven other convicted witches who had accused Magdalen of being one of them.
1660-64
Pollman, Anna, defendant
Box 4 Folder 24
143 leaves
"Untersuchungsprotokoll gegen die Ehefrau des Juergen Pollmann, Anna, geboren Nolte, in Rinteln, wegen Zauberei." With notes by G.L. Burr
1621
Prütinger, Cunz, defendant
Box 4 Folder 25
2 leaves
Order for examination by torture issued by the office of the Chancellor of the Prince-Bishop of Bamberg and Würzburg.
Q-S
1649-1654
Reinhard, Ursula, defendant
Box 5 Folder 1
208 leaves
Original documents from the trials of all three accused witches, that took place in Waltershausen in Thuringia, Germany. The first 106 leaves are sewn together in one fascicle and concern only Ursula Reinhard, who was tortured and burned. Followed by 93 loose leaves relating also to her trial, the rest is about subsequent trials of women accused by Ursula, Judith Rommelmann (2 leaves), and Caspar Hess' wife (7 leaves). With a note by G.L. Burr.
May 1900
Rosenthal, Ludwig
Box 5 Folder 2
1 leaf
Postcard offering for sale "a very interesting and exceedingly rare" booklet on witchcraft. Pencilled on the card is a note by G.L. Burr indicating that the book was not ordered for Cornell Library due to the price.
1749
Sänger or Singerin, Maria Renata, defendant
Box 5 Folder 3
35 leaves
Autograph document signed, containing: "Ratione Corporis Delicti," a brief of the case against her (leaves numbered 1-3). Three lists of questions to be asked of her (leaves numbered 4-6). Part of her examination and confession, dated February 5, 1749, and signed in her hand "Soror Maria Renata Sengerin de Mossau" (leaf numbered 7). Legal briefs discussing her alleged crimes, plus accounts of her secular trial and execution (leaves numbered 8-13). Sister Maria Renata von Mossau was a Bavarian nun at the convent of Unterzell, who was executed for heresy, witch craft, apostasy and satanism, one of the last people executed for these charges in Europe, in Würzburg in June 1749.
Related Materials: Complementary sources about Maria Renata's examination are to be found at the Staatsarchiv in Würzburg with the signature HV manuscripts f. 20, f. 225, f. 267 and f. 1569 . See Anton Memminger, Das verhexte Kloster : nach den Akten dargestellt, Würzburg, 1904, call number: Witchcraft BF 1583 .Z7 1749c; and "Die Praemonstratenserchorfrau Renata Singer von Mossau und ihre Sippe," in "Beiträge zur Geschichte des Bistums Regensburg 39 (2005)," Festschrift Paul Mai, p. 165-178.
1750?
Schlott, defendant
Box 5 Folder 4
4 leaves
AM Deposition for witchcraft against one Schlott, who was secretary for the convent of Unterzell, near Würzburg.
1615-30, 1905
[1] Seebauer or Seebawer, K., defendant; [2] Bussbacher, Margaretha, defendant; [3] Schuster, Barbara, defendant; Eismennin, Margaretha, defendant; [4] Schneiderin, Anna, Staudtin, Anna and Magdhalena Stüberich [mother and daugher], Ottilia Dehinn, Claus Winckelmann, all from Hangenweisheim in Franconia, defendants; [5] Kühnen, defendant; [6] Künnen, Reygers, defendant; and [7] Gröling, Margaretha, defendant
Box 5 Folder 5
11 leaves + 8 leaves + 4 leaves + 2 leaves + 2 leaves+ 10 leaves + 10 leaves
This set of manuscripts bound together contains the records of seven distinct trial records, numbered 1-7 in this catalog. The first record contains the testimony of the witnesses, and an account of the procedure of Frau Seebauer's trial and execution for witchcraft in 1629, with a short annotation by G.L. Burr ("bought for the President White's Library in September 1905") as well as two letters in German from bookseller and antiquarian Emil Hirsch from Munich, the first about this acquisition, and the second about other manuscripts documenting the history of witch-hunt in Franconia, for sale (August and September 1905). The remaining six records concern witchcraft trials that also took place in Franconia in the years 1615-1630 (2-7 in this catalog) including the last defendant's "Gut und peinliche Aussag" (statement under torture)
1629
Seublin, Agnes, defendant
Box 5 Folder 6
12 leaves
Six documents and a postscript scrap belonging to the trial of this Seublin of Warmbronn, near Stuttgart.
1621
Spingel, Sunna, defendant
Box 5 Folder 7
1 leaf
Autograph document signed, related to a witchcraft trial held in Neuerburg, Luxembourg
6 August-20 November 1627
Stein, Susanne, defendant
Box 5 Folder 8
4 leaves and 31 leaves and 1 leaf and 34 leaves
"Advice" on behalf of the authorities of the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg and indictment and complete transcript of the trial held in Neuerburg, Luxembourg. With annotations by G.L. Burr, 1887
1619-1620
Stübler, Magdalena, defendant
Box 5 Folder 9
32 leaves
Transcript of her witchcraft trial held at Leonberg, in Bavaria.
T-Z
May 23,1926
Taylor, G
Box 6 Folder 1
1 leaf
Autograph letter signed to Cornell Prof. Adams, regarding a witchcraft case, as well as the "Dark Lady" of Shakespeares' Sonnets.
Early 17th century
Trithemius, Johannes
Box 6 Folder 2
6 leaves and 38 leaves
Collection of "conjurations" or formulas of exorcism attributed to the Abbot of Spannheim, magician Trithemius (1462-1516), whose work on sorcery contained the first record of the famous folk story Dr. Faustus.
undated
Wahrhafte und Umständige Nachricht von dem Zufahl, so das Jungfräulichen Closter Unterzell des Heiligen Canonischen Praemontatenser Ordens im Jahr 1749 Betroffen Hat.
Box 6 Folder 3
23 leaves
An account of Sister Maria Renata Sänger's (or Singerin's) career from the time she entered the cloister to her trial and execution for witchcraft.
Related Materials: See Box 5, Folder 3.
March 1656
Wallys or Wallis, Mary, defendant
Box 6 Folder 4
23 leaves
Relation by Sir Richard Onsley, a clerk, who himself "had it from his credible neighbors", of a woman named Mary Wallis from Guilford, Kent, England, who was accused of having bewitched her grandson Nicholas. Contains the testimonies of villagers "[who] seemed to be sober well-bred country people." With a transcription made by William R. Johnson in 1978.
Related Materials: See C. L'Estrange Ewen, Witch hunting and witch trials; the indictments for witchcraft from the records of 1373 assizes held for the Home Circuit A.D. 1559-1736. London: K. Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1929. Olin Library BF1581 .E94 W8 1971.
1650
Weitluft, Nicolaus or Nicholaus, defendant
Box 6 Folder 5
46 leaves + 4 leaves
Partial records containing a statement of the accusation, and a report of his examination, largely under torture, as well as of the interrogation of his accuser, beggar-boy named "Zacherlen," by the Inquisitors of the free city of Schwäbisch-Gmünd (in what is now Württemberg, Germany). The record documents the patterns of persecution, and the different strategies chosen by men and women indicted for witchcraft: in this case, Nicholaus protests that he is innocent until he is tortured and admits that indeed he has devoted himself to the devil, who visited his bedroom and turned it into a magic garden, etc.; he then retracts his confession; afterwards he admits that he is a witch, yet with the caveat that he was not really possessed. In the same "volume" is a detached leaf with the heading "Einnemen / Handlelohn." This is a record of a transfer of properties from one tenant to another, with no connection to the court trial record, except that the landlord may have been the same free city of Gmünd.
1722
Wendel, Regina, defendant
Box 6 Folder 6
13 leaves
Four documents from the hearings of 8 year old orphan girl named Regina Wendel, who was supposedly under the influence of the devil. Includes a report of the preliminary hearing, the examination of the defendant and witnesses, and a final decision made by a judge of Öttingen (Bavaria), who acquitted her.
1628
Weyer, Lehna, Defendant
Box 6 Folder 7
2 leaves
Advice given by the Luxembourg [Lutzemburg] government officials for the torture and execution of a woman who was deprived of her possessions and burned after strangulation "wegen bekannten Zauberlaster und Zauberthaten."
September 30, 1899
White, Andrew Dickson
Box 6 Folder 8
4 leaves
Typewritten letter signed to Proffessor [sic] George L. Burr, Cornell University, discussing the contents and purchase of the records of the witchcraft trial of Maria Renata Sänger of Unterzell/Mossau.
February 10, 1900
White, Andrew Dickson
Box 6 Folder 9
1 leaf
Typewritten letter signed to Professor George L. Burr, Cornell University, discussing the purchase of witchcraft trial records (Bamberg?).
[circa 1560-1588]
Wick, Johann Jacob, 1522-1588
Box 6 Folder 10
4 notebooks, 63 leaves
Extracts made in 1888 by future historians George L. Burr and Earl Barnes [who would receive his M.S. from Cornell in 1891] from the compilation of manuscripts and print known as "Wickiana," 24 volumes kept in the Zürich Zentralbibliothek. With annotations and descriptions of illustrations by Burr.
George Lincoln Burr catalog cards and slips
Box 7
Rossell Hope Robbins Encyclopedia of Witchcraft illustrations
Box 8-9