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Wicked Practise & Sorcerye

Michael Honeybone (Modern History, 1959)

‘Done to death by wicked practise & sorcerye’ claims the inscription on the splendid tomb of the Sixth Earl of Rutland in Bottesford church, Leicestershire, describing the death of his two sons. Michael Honeybone’s book investigates this witchcraft accusation against the Flower family in the Vale of Belvoir in 1619, resulting in the sisters’ execution at Lincoln Castle.

His research puts this Jacobean story into the context of modern witchcraft studies. The bookinvestigates local arguments which caused resentment against the Flowers, political marriages which endangered the Earl’s aim to pass on his inheritance and attempts to cure the children by calling in the most famous physicians. He contrasts popular superstitions with contemporary clergy’s denunciations of witchcraft and considers the influence of King James I, a frequent visitor to hunt with the Earl at Belvoir Castle. The account of the trial draws on a pamphlet and ballad from1619, both reprinted in this fully illustrated book.

Special price for past and present members of Christ Church: £12.50 hardback, including postage and packing, direct from the author: Michael Honeybone, 36 The Close, Norwich NR1 4EG telephone: 01603 621 431 Cheques payable to: Dr Michael Honeybone.

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