ment, using her native dialect.
fled that, six years before, she had heard one Howen say she had seen Glover
come down her chimney.
It was plain the prisoner was a Roman Catholic
, she had never learned the Lord
's prayer in English
; she could repeat the paternoster fluently enough, but not quite correctly: so the ministers and Goodwin
's family had the satisfaction of getting her condemned as a witch, and executed.
‘Here,’ it was
proclaimed, ‘was food for faith.’
So desperately wicked is the heart of man: the girl, who knew herself to be a deceiver, had no remorse; and to the ministers, in their self-righteousness, it never occurred that vanity and love of power had blinded their judgment.
There were skeptics in Boston
The age, thought the ministers, ‘was a debauched one,’ given up ‘to Sadducism;’ and, as the possessed damsel obtained no relief, Cotton Mather
, eager to learn the marvels of the world of spirits, and ‘wishing to confute the Sadducism’ of his times, invited her to his house; and the artful girl easily imposed upon his credulity.
The devil would permit her to read in Quaker
books, or the Common Prayer
, or Popish books; but a prayer from Cotton Mather
, or a chapter from the Bible
, would throw her into convulsions.
By a series of experiments, in reading aloud passages from the Bible
in various languages, the minister satisfied himself, ‘by trials of their capacity,’ that devils are well skilled in languages, and understand Latin, and Greek
, and even Hebrew; though he fell ‘upon one inferior Indian
language which the daemons did not seem so well to understand.’
Experiments were made, with unequal success, to see if devils can know the thoughts of others