Witchcraft in Europe, 400-1700: A Documentary History by Alan Charles Kors
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
When writing historical fiction, it's always important to access historical research that's as accurate as possible. My fiction is set in twelfth century England and research into events or issues can present challenges with the passage of some eight centuries.
I wished to include the issue of witchcraft or, to be more accurate, sorcery in my current novel. Many books on witchcraft/sorcery tend to concentrate on later centuries but I was thrilled to find entries in this book that covered the time period I needed.
This book chronicles the rise and fall of witchcraft in Europe over 1,300 years, starting (as per the title)in 400 A.D. It presents contemporary accounts and primary documents. While of course these are at times more challenging to follow, the translations are accessible for the non-expert (such as me!).
There are notes on each entry, along with meticulous attribution of sources. There are also suggestions for further reading.
My only quibble would be the lack of an index as it makes finding specific issues a bit more laborious. But it is a minor criticism and certainly should not put off anyone who is interested in reading reliable information on the subject.
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