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centregalilee.com Witch Trials in history andLiteratureAn Undergraduate Course, college of Virginia feather Semester 2001Pre-Trial Examination: in march 24, 1692

Rebecca Nurse, a sick and elderly woman of seventy-years old,stood for examination before the court on fees of practicingwitchcraft on in march 24, 1692. Judge man Hathorne, aided byJudge Jonathan Corwin, carried out the examination in the meetinghouse that centregalilee.com village before a crowd of civilization from centregalilee.com Village.The examination of "Goody Nurse" arisen into a spectacle worthyof the attendance that so numerous onlookers, together a number of afflictedwomen launched into "grevious fitts" and also openly denounced RebeccaNurse together the reason of their torment. In the end, after among thegreat confrontations between an accused and also the notorious JudgeHathorne, the Judges found cause to tie Rebecca Nurse end fortrial after i m sorry she to be executed top top Gallows Hill ~ above July 19,1692.The examination of Rebecca Nurse was videotaped by the ReverendSamuel Parris, whose own young daughter Betty was one of theaccusers together Betty"s cousin, twelve-year old Abigail Williams.He writes the the examination opened up with Hathorne transforming hisattention no to Nurse, but rather come Abigail Williams. Williamsreported come the magistrates that the apparition the Nurse had justthat morning, and also on previous occasions, afflicted her.Shortly after this statement, Ann Putnam, Jr. Launched right into a"grievous fit" and before Rebecca Nurse even began to testify, thetone the the examination had been set.Hathorne first turned his fist to Nurse, and pointedly askedher come account for the accusations of Williams and Putnam. Nurse,defiant and incredulous come the end, responded, "I deserve to say prior to myEternal Father ns am innocent and God will clear mine innocency."Following the very first of plenty of denials ~ above Nurse"s part, Hathorneturned his attention to the assembly to hear extr evidenceagainst Nurse. ~ receiving two more accounts implicating Nursein witchcraft, this time native adult men in the community, Hathorneput the question more directly. "Are girlfriend an chaste personrelating to this witchcraft?"Before Rebecca Nurse can respond, Ann Putnam, Sr. Interrupted andcried out to Nurse, "Did you not lug the Black male with you," andthe check descended right into a barrage the accusations as MaryWalcott and Elizabeth Hubbard sign up with in by crying the end that Nurseafflicted them best there in the conference house.In an amazing aside in the check record, Parris wrotethat one of these accusations came from, "Mary Walcott (who oftenheretofore stated she had actually seen her, but never can say or walk saythat she either bit or pinchted her, or ache her)". Here, Parris,who actively encouraged the accusations in centregalilee.com Village, suggeststhat Walcott was now able to confirm that Nurse to be the cause ofher previous torment. Then the girls, with their eyes on Nurse"sagitated movements, imitated her postures by contorting their ownbodies. For this reason they do it appear that Nurse implicated herself, asthe afflicted cried out in pain through every activity of theexaminant"s head and also arms, acquiring the attion the the judges and theonlookers. Yet even in the challenge of this look at damning evidence,Nurse steadfastly proclaimed her innocence: "The mr knows i havenot pains them. Ns am an chaste person."The banter in between Hathorne, and also possibly at time Corwin, andNurse continued as the judges attempted come badger a confessionusing various rhetorical devices. The judges request why Nursestood stoically in the challenge of such afflictions experienced by thegirls, come which Nurse replied, "You execute not understand my heart," and thatshe was, "... As clear as the son unborn." The effort to pressure aconfession is clear, as is the continuous and unwavering refusal ofRebecca Nurse come "bely" it s her by bearing false evil againstherself, despite at this at an early stage stage in the trials she can notknow that confession to be the means to buy time and avoid thegallows..

Hathorne, likely frustrated in ~ Nurse"s refusal to cooperate andconfess her dealings through the Devil, attempted a new approach."They accuse you the hurting them," the stated, "and if you think itis not unwillingly however by designe, you have to look upon them asmurderers." The meaning of this line runs deep. First,Hathorne through this declare deftly forced Nurse to describe theafflictions witnessed in that an extremely room as, if no her fault, thenthe fault of the very girls therefore "grievously afflicted".

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Second, bystating that the afflicted girls would be "murderers" if merelypretending your affliction "by designe", it certainly becameabundantly clear to Rebecca Nurse the it would be she own death towhich this afflicted women would soon be responsible if they werelying, as executions had actually yet to be ordered or started in centregalilee.com. Itwas Hathorne"s final, desperate effort to force a confession fromNurse by ensuring she construed that her very own life remained in thebalance.As the examination drew to a close, the finest Hathorne can wrestfrom the steadfast Nurse was that though she go think theafflicted to be "bewitcht", she proclaimed that "I cannot help it, theDevil may show up in my shape." This tiny admission, do onlyafter Hathorne had asserted the at least her apparition wasculpable, still did not obtain Hathorne complete confession he wanted.Therefore, after ~ an examination that was truly a circus hardlybefitting a true and also legal hearing, Judges Hathorne and also Corwinbound Rebecca Nurse over because that the trial i beg your pardon would an outcome in herexecution on dues of practicing witchcraft.