Reese Orsini October 17 -November 7 Unit IV APEH
FQ1: What economic, social and political crises did Europe experience in the first half of the seventeenth century?
During the 17th century, Europe faced one primary crisis from each category, the Witchcraft hysteria for the social, the Thirty Years' war for the political and continent-wide rebellions between differing economic classes . Prior to the widespread witchcraft craze, witchcraft was a common practice in rural towns and villages but had yet been linked by the church to satanic practices and activities. As a result of the Spanish church's inquisition, witchcraft became a popular charge to tack on to a non-Christian suspect who would then be turned over to state authorities for prosecution usually by burning at the stake or hanging. Many of the accused witches eventually admitted to the charge because of the long hours of torture that they underwent. These charges ranged from sworn allegiances to the devil, to the usage of evil magics to inflict harm or misfortune onto their town or village.
Outbreaks of the hysteria occurred mainly in area where Protestantism had recently taken hold or areas where Protestant-Catholic tensions still existed, where both religions would hurl accusations at one another in an attempt to gain prominence and power in the area. The social aspect of the event is apparent in the communal values that such rural villages were used to following during the previous centuries and how these values were essentially violated by the suspects of witchcraft. Elderly women were the main targets for such accusations because they tended to go against these communal values by looking out for themselves rather than everyone else in the village. The Thirty Years war functions as both an example for a religious and political conflict during the 17th century in...