Matthew Hopkins, English witch hunter

Matthew Hopkins, English witch hunter

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Caption: Matthew Hopkins (died 1647), English Witch Finder General, with two women accused of being witches. The women are giving the names of their imps, or evil spirits. Hopkins was appointed in 1644 and was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of suspected witches in eastern England. Supposedly a well-educated man, he searched his victims for "witches' marks" and tested their ability to float in water when bound, a sure sign of guilt. The majority of suspects drowned or were hanged. In 1647 he was forced to undergo his own test and, on floating in water when bound, he was hanged. Engraving published in 1647.

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