|Anonymous 34||One of two imps allegedly sent by Goodwife Harwood and Goodwife Young to torment Mr. Hall, who, finding they were unable to hurt, plagued his daughter Mary Hall. They spirits, which speak through Hall, claim that they sometimes we are in the shape of Serpents, sometimes of Flyes, sometimes of Rats or Mice." They entered her home, via the chimney and entered her body, via Mary's foot. They would blaspheme and mock Dr. Woodhouse, they would tempt Hall to choke herself and prevent her from reading the bible. They would prevent her from riding her horse, by make her dance about and smash her against walls. The imps instruct Mary Hall's mother to buy Hall gifts, but telling her she "should not sleep, and would sometimes heave her up in bed, and tell her, Mary, we will buy you a black Gown, Hoods, and Scarfs, and Ribbins, Hay! Ribbins, Ribbins, Ribbins, Ribbins." They also refuse to answer the philosophical posed to them by William Drage. ||The manner and matter of the Spirits speaking was on this wise:
If any said, Get thee out of her, Satan; the spirit replyed, We are two; and as oft as any said, Satan, or Devil, it would reply, We are two; and would say, We are onely two little Imps, Gfe Harods, and Youngs; sometimes we are in the shape of Serpents, sometimes of Flyes, sometimes of Rats or Mice; and Gfe Harod sent us to choak this Maid, Mary Hall; but we should have choaked Goodman Hall, but of him we had no Power, and so possessed his daughter; we came down the Chimny, riding on a stick, and went first to Mary's foot, whereupon her foot trembled first of all her distemper. At other times, upon diverse occasions, either voluntarily, or in answer to the questions of those that came to see her, they said, They would do more mischief if they could; yea, they would destroy all Mankind, and be revenged on their Adversaries, but God was above, they had not Power, yet many times they would speak Blasphemously of God; and say, God cannot cast us out, we are above God; we are four to
one, (meaning the two Witches that sent them, and they two; against God) and do you think we cannot deal with him well enough. When some came to pray, they would say, You shall not cast us out, we will tire you all out; and when they had done praying, the Spirits would say, Did we not tell you, you should not cast us out? where is your God now? When one of Saint Albans came to pray, the Spirits said, Get you goue, for we cannot abide you: to another they said, that spoke to them of God, Get you gone, it is dark, it is late, you will be benighted.
Sometimes to those that came to cast them out, they would say, They would be gone to morrow; or that they had a short time, and thereforo must be busie in shewing a few prankes more, ere they went out; at another time they would tell them, They must choak her, and they would not out yet.
Sometimes they would bid her, Mary, choak your self, when she went to eat; and when she went nigh water, Mary, dround your self; and when she would not do it, and they wanted Power to make her, they would say, Ah Fool, Fool, Fool, Fool, what will you not drownd your self? when she was nigh the Fire, they would say, Mary, put your head into the Fire; or, Mary, put your head into the Pot, and sometimes of a suddain they would dop down her head, as if she should put it into the Scalding Pottage, but could not effect it.
Because many People came to her, her father, in September sent her to several Friends Houses, five or six miles more or lesse distant; where Friends met to pray; and the Spirits would say, Mary shall not ride, and would lift her up, and make her shake, so that they were fain to hold her on the Horse; but formerly they suffered her to ride without interruption; since they begun to speak, when she went to read in the Bible, they would say, Mary, do not read; or, Mary you shall not read, for Books are all against us; her father would say, She shall read in spight of all the Devils, and so she did alwayes without interruption; for when she read, she was not molested, but once they did convulse her Arms, and threw the Books far from her.
When some prayed by her, and said, At the Name of God shall all Flesh Tremble; and at the Name of Iesus shall every knee bow, they would make her to tremble, and her knees to bow; and when so done, laugh and sing, We know how to cheat you, and make you believe any thing.
Yet sometimes they would say, We are Lyers, and God is true; and when God speakes the word, we must out: and at other times they would howl, and lament, and condole their condition, and cry out, We are undone, we are undone, we are miserable and tormented! and immediately thereupon,
they would bark, or sing, or howl, or make a jearing, and set a tune, and make Maryes feet move thereto according.
And when any blamed them for mocking at God, who was able to make them miserable to all Eternity, they would answer, They could be no worse then they were, and that if they were out of Mary Hall, they must go again to service, to the Witches that sent them in; to them they must return, and their work they must do; and as much mischief at they can, against all that are their enemies.
Sometimes when questions were asked, they would make no answer; and sometimes, answer to each question; sometimes indirectly, and sometimes directly; sometimes seriously, and sometimes scoffingly; and sometimes would do nothing, but say and gainsay themselves: one spake to them in Latine, and they answered, We cannot speak Latine; and presently they said, If we can, we will not: the father thinks one speaks one thing and the other another.
They would often repeat what Doctor Woodhouse had done, and said, about their casting out, and remember all exactly, and laugh at him, saying, Doctor Woodhouse would have cast us out, but he could not; he is a cunning fellow, but we are cunninger then he; let not him think a few slaps will expel Satan.
Sometimes they would Blasphemously say, God was a Bastard, let him come if he dare: and when some good men had done praying, the Spirits would say, Where is your God now? and afore they began, they would tell them, They should weary them out.
When Goodwife Harwood, the Witch, that sent them, (as they say) came, they said, Oh Gfe Harwood! are you come! that is well; it is well you are come; we were sent by you, Gfe Harwood: she denyed it; Then said the Spirits, What! will you deny us now! Gfe Harwood, you sent us to choak the Father, and having no Power of him, we were to go to his Daughter; and we have endeavoured to choak her, but cannot: and when Gfe Harwood was going away, the Spirits cryed, saying, We will go with you, Gfe Harwood; Oh let us go with you; will you leave us, Goodwife Harwood? but Gfe Young, the other they accused, never came to vindicate her self.
Doctor Woodhouse got Mary Halls nailes that were cut off, and with somewhat he added, hung them up in the Chimny a reesing over-night; and by next morning Gfe Harwood came, which they thought to be caused by the aforesaid things.
When it was talked amongst the Houshold that Gfe Harod should be had before a Justice; upon the Spirits accusation, the Spirits would plead for her, and say, Do not have Gfe Harwood afore the Iustice: But
after she had come, and denyed them, they would say, Let Gfe Harwood be hanged, if she will, because she denyed us.
The voice these Spirits uttered, differed; the father said, he thought one had a shrill voice, and the other a great; sometimes they would speak like a Child, and drawling; sometimes greatly, and sonrously; sometimes they would imitate the voices of those that were in the House.
Ere they speak, the Spectators beheld her Breast to rise, and by the gradual lifting up of her Breasts towards her Throat, somewhat seemed to ascend; then it came into her Throat, and distended that, so that her neck seemed at sometimes as if a roll was in it.
Sometimes her lips in speaking were not moved, but commonly they were, and her tongue alwayes; for the Spirits by the pains she felt, and by the swelling of those parts seen to the Spectators, came to the root of the Tongue, and moved it.
Sometimes they came thus to her Throat, to try if they could choak her, and her breath would be stopped for a while, and then be at a little more liberty; and presently they would distend and swell her Throat again, so that she was ready to swoond, and for a while laboured for breath: sometimes she had many of these fits, and sometimes was freed a good while; she slept well, and eat freely, and all the while she read, the Spirits troubled her not; so that eating, reading, and sleeping, were her immunity, or times of reprieve.
But when People prayed, they tore and tormented her; yet at sometimes they lay still; and if she sat, on a suddain they would make her leap up a good height; sometimes in length she would leap an Extraordinary way; sometimes as she lay on her bed, and was fain to be held, on a suddain (while others were praying, the Spirits lying still a good while) she would leap up and hit her head against the Beds Testor.
Sometimes she would beat her self, sometimes with one, sometimes both hands, chiefly on the Breast.
Sometimes her legs would go, fast and violently, kicking of the ground, and the Spirits would say, Come, Mary, Dance; and then they would make a tune, and make her feet to Dance it; sometimes they would say, Mary, make a mouth; and they then convulsed her mouth, so that her lips seemed gristles, and her Nose was sometimes drawn up; another time they should say, We will p out your Eyes; and then they would so draw together her Eye-lids, that scarce any extuberance of the Eye could be perceived.
Sometimes they would say, Come, Mary, turn round; and then they would whisk her round; sometimes they would say, Turn half round, and she would do accordingly.
Sometimes when the Spirits moved her Tongue, some of the House would catch hold of it, to stay it, and it was pulled from them.
They read out of Master Culpepers Books, that Misleto of the Oak, was good against Witchceaft; wherefore they got some Misleto, and applyed about her neck, and she trembled; and to what part soever they applyed it, so as it touched her Flesh, she trembled; by which they perceived it had prevalency against Diabolical Incantation; but did the Maid no good as to the Expulsion of the Cacodaemons.
When Doctor Woodhouse ordered some things to be boiled for her, affoon as they began to boil, the Maid, or the Spirits in her, did tremble and shake, and so continued all the while those Antidaemoniack-Medicines boiled.
Though she was for the most part most tortured and molested when any prayed by her, yet she was willing thereto, because defirous to be rid of that enthralment; yet commonly we cannot tell how to entertain willingly a present misery, though it bring to us an after extraordinary happiness.
All this while she looked pretty well for colour, and kept her Flesh; she was a Civil fair-conditioned Maid, and her Friends inclined to the Anabaptists Sect, and most that came to pray by her were of their Teachers.
She would sometimes be forced against the walls, scrabbling with her hands as if she would run up; the Spirits would precipitate her in diverse manners, but that they wanted Power, as sometimes they said they could not hurt an hair of her head, and though they tortured her body, they could not damnifie her Soul; her mind was free and unhurt, when her fits were off, and when the Spirits were no way occasionally moved.
Assoon as Doctor Woodhouse had given her a Spoonful of some Liquor, being scarce got down her Throat, she fell down in a swoond; so that it is apparant some things are Antipathetick to Daemons.
I told them I doubted natural Remedies would do no good, otherwise I could have advised them to give her Powder of Coral, of Piony, of Misleto, of Herb True-Love, and of Saint Iohns-wort, severally, now some of one, and anon some of another; and to have hung, Rosemary, Misleto, Ivy and Coral in the house, and about her neck, or to have given her the De[...]ction of them at any time, specially in the fits, in such manner as she could best take them.
The Evil Spirits would rarely take notice of any, or speak to them if they stood civily in the Room, unless that they first spake to, or concerning the Spirits; they would sometime say, We may easily be cast out,
one word will cast us out; the standers-by would presently ask? What word Adjure, said the Spirits: but they tryed that, & many other ineffectually.
I went over to have seen her, but she was not at home, and her Father and Uncle said, they-knew not whither she was carryed by some other friends she had, that used to pray with her; Therefore I made it my business to examine strictly, her Father, Brother and Sister, at different times, and also her Uncle, who were most constantly with her and saw all her changes; and also in the Town I examined some that were present with her in her fits, and of some Neighbour ; who held alike in their confession.
Since, in September, October, and November, little talk hath been of her, but I hear, she is so afflicted still; but the Spirits lie still for the most part, unless by questions, or praying, they are disturbed; sometimes they say, they lift her upto a great height, but say, they cannot hurt one Hair of her head.
Since, on December 1. I was there, and saw the postures and carriage of the Maid: when I went first into the house the Maid was feeding, and looked well-bleed, seemingly she was very well: I asked the Spirits some questions, and they answered me, but very foolishly; they said, They were sent by Gfe Harod, who gave them her Soul to come intMary Hall; I asked them if they were sent by a Councel of Superiour Daemons? they answered thus, We will not tell you, that we won't, that we won't, that we won't. I asked them, if they did not fear Gods punishing them to all Eternity, for these endeavours of wrong to mankind? they answered, We do not fear God, we care not for God. I asked if their Superiour Daemons, or Masters, sat in a Local Hell, to give out commission, to such as they, to go and do their service, or whether the chiefer Spirits also did possesse any, as they did? they said, We won't tell you, that we won't. I asked them, how they liked the Bible? they made no answer. I asked to what purpose were their foolish, idle, unnecessary tricks, they tended not to advance the interest of their Masters Kingdom? they answered nothing. Both in her reading and feeding, both her fits of speaking, and convulsive fits molested her: alwayes when she spoke, her voice was intelligible, plain, and modest; they spoke scarce to be understood: alwayes afore they spoke, her Throat swelled, her Face grew red, her head shook, and was wreathed about, until they had done; when I caused her tongue to be held out of her mouth, their voice was more obscure; it is sometimes hoarser, sometimes shriller; sometimes small, sometimes great; sometimes her Throat swells more, sometimes lesse, and her Breast is elevated; she went to read, they told her, she should not, yet she did; she then had
shaking of one Leg; I laid my hand upon her knee, and then the motion ceased there, and writhed her body; in her going, one Leg was took, as it were, with a cramp; but sometimes she goeth very well; nothing happens alwayes, and each sometimes; sometime one member, sometime another; sometime in one manner, and sometime in another; sometimes almost all the members, and sometimes scarce any.
While I was there, Goodwife Hall told me, that the night before the Spirits told her, she should not sleep, and would sometimes heave her up in bed, and tell her, Mary, we will buy you a black Gown, Hoods, and Scarfs, and Ribbins, Hay! Ribbins, Ribbins, Ribbins, Ribbins.
Not being satisfied with what I saw, I went over to Barkinsted to Doctor Woodhouse, who was her Physitian, and he told me he really thought she was possessed, and he told me two able Physitians, (whose names I have now forgotten) were with her, and told him she was Daemoniacally possessed, and that they being very lately in France, saw there a whole Covent of Nunns so handled as Mary Hall was, with their Abbatesse; onely this Symptome was more in Mary Hall, then any of that Covent (who were to the number of thirty possessed with Devils) that ere when the Spirits spoke in Mary Hall, in their presence, her Throat, on each side, was extended to the bigness of a mans fist; Also Doctor Woodhouse said, one of her keepers told him, that he and another man held her in her Chair, and she leaped up from them, and they thought she would have gone out of their reach, had they not pulled her down and held her; and another time, two men held her, and she leaped out of her Chair, and until her fit was over, they could not force her down again: her fits commonly are very short, especially when they are very often. When she came to be cured, with Doctor Woodhouse, she sat very still a while in his Physick room, and on a suddain she fell a stamping, and so continued half an hour, till she was all on a sweat, and made the house shake.
Drage, William. Daimonomageia a Small Treatise of Sickness and Diseases from Witchcraft. London: 1665, 32-39