Reviews materials from this period (although Levack does include the trial of Alice Kyteler, the case is so unusual and had so few consequences in the later literature that it hardly matters except for the overall record--Richard Ledrede's ideas of sorcery and ``witchcraft'' came from his earlier career at the papal court in Avignon under the fearful John XXII, certainly not from the locals in Ossory) is to ignore the enormous work of thinkers between 400 and 1500 in constructing the intellectual and perceptual fabric of Latin Christianity. One considerable virtue of Levack's collection, indicated by his selection from Augustine discussed above, is that he often uses different passages from the writers translated in KP2, thus making more of their work available to interested students. The more of Christian Thomasius that gets Englished, the better--he is not an easy writer to translate. Levack's is certainly not THE Witchcraft Sourcebook, but it is a sourcebook chiefly dealing with witchcraft ideas and prosecutions between the midsixteenth and the early eighteenth centuries. And for those who think that this period is the beginning and end of the subject, it will serve just fine. For those who do not, it won't. edward
Magic, Ritual, and Witchcraft – University of Pennsylvania Press
Published: May 11, 2008
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