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The displaying of supposed witchcraft, 1677

English minister and physician John Webster wrote this treatise to refute the existence of witchcraft as presented by others, namely English writer and philosopher Joseph Glanvill and English philosopher Henry More. Webster acknowledges that witches and magicians may exist, but argues that they do not have special powers or help from the Devil. They deceive and cheat in ordinary ways, and use the power of suggestion to trick people. Webster believed that all of the supernatural events attributed to witches could be explained by natural causes.

Courtesy National Library of Medicine

Title page of a book.
  • Creator:

    John Webster (1611–1682)