Site Loader
Rock Street, San Francisco

The chaos of the Salem witch trials began in 1685, when King Charles the second revoked the original charter of the Massachusetts Bay colony and issued a new one. When this new royal charter didn’t work, King James the second made another formal agreement with the Puritans in 1691. This was called the Massachusetts Bay colony Charter of 1691, and it sent William Phips to govern Salem. When Phips arrived in 1692 he set into motion the Court of Oyer and Terminer to deal with a backlog of witchcraft accusations. The accusations began due to the intolerance of Puritan religion regarding that charter, stating freedom of religion (Under the general umbrella of Christianity) was required. However, when Phips was called off to war, he wasn’t able to finish, and Stoughton came in as replacement. Stoughton introduced spectral evidence, worsening the trials by allowing the afflicted to accuse others based on belief in spectral form. When Phips returned, he wrote to the General Court of the wrongdoings, which caused them to call upon him to discuss the case.  The court was terminated by Phips and the General Court passed a law acting against witchcraft, conjuration and evil spirits. With that, the Superior Court of Judicature was formed to carry out the trials. Notably, the new law banned usage of spectral evidence. Without spectral evidence, many witches were deemed not guilty. The rest were pardoned by Governor Phips.Many of the accused had been wealthy landowners who lost everything when they were accused. Many never received compensation or land that was stolen from them. Most  importantly, Phips was taken out of office. Finally, in 1957, the last “accused witches” names were cleared. The drabe Puritans weren’t as dull as many have described them, and with extensive research, their true colours popped out. In their crafts, carvings, and paintings lay the true details of their livelihood. Although the trials started with pure intentions, a different picture was painted. The same picture that displays the Salem witch trials and all its troubles of religious intolerance, the new charter, and Puritanical beliefs.

Post Author: admin


I'm Dora!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out