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date: 20 April 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the various forms of magic known in medieval Europe, focusing on those features that made it suspect and led to censure, prohibition, and prosecution. It suggests connections or disconnections between the prescriptive texts of the magicians themselves, the proscriptive texts of their opponents, and the descriptive literature (including judicial records) that claims to recount actual instances of magical activity. The article deals not simply with beliefs or with trials, but with the link between the two: the patterns of behaviour and perception that made it likely for magic to fall under suspicion and for the magician to be brought to trial.

Keywords: medieval Europe, magic, magicians, trials, suspicion, beliefs

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