Witchcraft and Magic in Ireland

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

This is the first academic overview of Irish witchcraft. Based on a wide range of sources, it is a highly original and innovative study of beneficial and harmful magic, from the later medieval period up until the twentieth century. It examines the dynamics of witchcraft belief and accusation in the early modern period, and offers new explanations for the lack of sustained witch-hunting in Ireland. It demonstrates that during the eighteenth century sections of the educated elite backed away from witchcraft belief for largely ideological reasons, while the witch figure remained a strong part of popular culture. Witchcraft and Magic in Ireland also offers a new interpretation of the role of cunning-folk and popular magic in Irish society, along with a re-assessment of the attitudes of religious authorities, both Protestant and Catholic, to their activities. The way in which suspected witches and cunning-folk were treated by the Irish legal system, both before and after the repeal of the 1586 Irish Witchcraft Act in 1821, is also explored for the first time.
LanguageEnglish
Place of PublicationBasingstoke
Number of pages232
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2015

Fingerprint

Ireland
Witchcraft
Magic
Witches
Cunning
Folk
Late Medieval Period
Popular Culture
Accusations
Hunting
Religious Authority
Elites
Legal System

Keywords

  • Witchcraft
  • Magic
  • demonic possession
  • fortune-tellers
  • magical healers
  • charms
  • cures
  • Ulster
  • Ireland
  • fairies
  • cunning-folk
  • wise woman
  • wise man
  • devil
  • religion
  • Protestant
  • Catholic
  • medieval
  • modern
  • early modern

Cite this

Sneddon, Andrew. / Witchcraft and Magic in Ireland. Basingstoke, 2015. 232 p.
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Witchcraft and Magic in Ireland. / Sneddon, Andrew.

Basingstoke, 2015. 232 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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Sneddon A. Witchcraft and Magic in Ireland. Basingstoke, 2015. 232 p.