Answered, she spoke it for weakness of her owne flesh, and for feare of her lyfe. Giving voice to the witches

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


How do you lift up marginalized voices so they can be heard? And more challenging still, what if those voices have been silenced for 400 years? “The Witch Experience” project aimed to make the voices of Scottish women and men accused of witchcraft sound again.
The project focused on the local context of the Orkney Islands, an archipelago off the north coast of Scotland, where at least 70 persons were accused of witchcraft between 1594 and 1708. In Scotland, a law forbidding the use of witchcraft, giving yourself out to have magical powers, or enlisting a witch to perform magic for you was passed by the parliament of Mary Queen of Scots in 1563. But it was not until the 1590s that the prosecution of witches became prevalent in Scotland, when King James VI of Scotland (later also James I of England) caused a panic, firstly by claiming that he and his Danish bride had been victims of storm-raising witches, and secondly by writing a book, Daemonology, explaining what witches do, how they derive powers from the Devil, and how they should be caught and punished.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHospitable Linguistics
EditorsNicholas Faraclas, Viveka Vellupilai, Anne Storck
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 30 Jan 2024

Publication series

NameMultilingual Matters


  • witchcraft
  • Witch trials
  • Witchcraft trials
  • Scots language


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