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Assertions for a specific person.

Name Description Original Text
James BarrowJame Barrow is a boy from the London Borough of Southwark described as the son of John Barrow who suffers from violent fits that start when it seems like the child is being burned. This fit lasts for a week, during which time Barrow also walks up and down a room, throws his hat from his head, lays his hands under his belly, screeches lamentably, and makes a croaking sound. He is also visited by a number of devils in the form of rats and cats, who demand his soul. During some of James Barrow's fits, he is also rendered lame, dumb, and blind. During one particular incident, James Barrow finds that he can control his fits by confining himself to a particular stool in the house. However, whenever anyone else sits on the stool, he falls over on his back. Because of the nature of James Barrow's fits, he also finds it impossible to eat until he sings. At times, he calls out the names of people, most particularly, Sam Man, John Sames, Mol Williams, and Mary Prett. Other incidents include James Barrow's inability to articulate to his father why he sits at a table with a pen, ink and a pin; a fit that causes James Barrow's feet to be extremely cold; and the inability for James Barrow to hear the Bible read in his presence without roaring or crying. Eventually, James Barrow's father, John Barrow, seeks help from outside. He first employs the help of physician and astrologer, John Hubbard, who believes Barrow has been bewitched. They use "fopperies and charms" including hanging papers around James Barrow's neck, and putting quills and quicksilver under the door. These prove unsuccessful at healing James Barrow. John Hubbard's second attempt to cure James Barrow of bewitchment is through cutting the boy's hair in a round circle, and trimming his fingers and toe nails. These are trimmings are wrapped in paper and deposited in an oak tree. This also proves useless at curing James Barrow's fits as well. However, after taking some medicine from doctors, astrologers, and apothecaries, James Barrow vomits, and seems well for a time, taking up an apprenticeship. However, after three months, James Barrow claims a rat entered his body, and he acts like a changeling, being unable to eat any food unless in his own household. Following this, John Barrow takes his son to a number of wise men, including: an Irish Roman Catholic (Anonymous 144), Lord Abony, a gentleman (Anonymous 146), a group of friars, and a doctor (Anonymous 487). No one seems able to cure James Barrow. However, shortly after this, John Barrow desires to engage in fasting and prayer for his son, resulting in three days of fasting and prayer, at the end of which he is restored and dispossessed. At first, James Barrow cannot even stand to hear the name of God and Christ, crying out "Legat, go to the Devil Legat," although his mouth did not move. As well, he shies away from the Bible. By the end of the first day, however, he seemed to rejoice at the sight of the Bible. A second day of exorcism consisted of prayers for the better part of the day, which James Barrow endures well until night, when "he fell into a very great Agony." The third day, James Barrow admits to "strong temptations of the Devil, namely to cut his throat, or drown himself, or knock out his brains against a post." Prayer is still performed for the boy, and he roars like a dog, and tears at his clothing. A departure of five spirits is noted from the boy, after which time he is restored.(5 - 8)IN Iuly, 1661. was the beginning of the lamentable and deplo|rable trouble of my poor Child, who was then taken ill after this manner following. His Mother, my Wife, bad him read his Book, which he did; and after he had read a Chapter, he was taken with a violent burning, so great, that we thought it would cost him his life. In this condition he continued about a week, at the end whereof, being on his Legs again, he would walk up and down the room, throwing his hat from his head, laying his hands under his belly, and screeking out lamentably, forty times in a day or more; this lasting some eight or ten dayes, he was af|terwards taken in another manner: as he walked about the Chamber, there was heard a croaking in his throat, very strange to them that heard it, which continued eight or ten dayes, or thereabouts. Suddenly after this there appeared Rats to him, and Cats with Rats in their clawes, dancing them sometimes coming (as he said) with glasses of Sack in their clawes, and Pasties, offering them to the Child, but he refused to receive them, and threw things at them; then they would de|mand his Soul, bidding him give it to the Devil, but he refused to con|descend to them. They told him when his Father and Mother was gone forth, they would come and dine with him at the long Table; after which time he could neither eat nor drink, except he did first go behind the door and sing, with his hat off; otherwise what he eat or drank would not go down, but endanger the choaking of him. Suddenly after this, he was taken above thirty times in a day both lame, dumb and blind, continuing so for a time. After this, I no soon|er went out about my imployment, (which lay abroad) but he would be cast upon the ground with a great force, insomuch that I could not otherwise conclude but it must be done by the malice and power of the Devil. When he was upon the ground he would strike himself upon the face with all his force, to the great amazement of the spectators, which were several Friends of mine that came to see my Child, hearing what condition he was in, by reason of whose coming, as we supposed, he was changed into divers and several actions; for the more they came to see him, the more his fits came upon him, which we perceiving, desired them to forbear coming; they did so, and then his fits abated. After this he was confined to a certain stool that was in the house, in|somuch that if any one else did sit down on that stool, he would be thrown flat on the ground, as it were dead, and not arise as long as any one else did sit on the aforesaid stool. At a certain time going to a Neighbours house he carried this stool with him, because he could sit upon no other; some friends and ac|quaintance of mine being desirous to see the Boy, came to my Neigh|bours house where he was; they were no sooner come in but he fell into the same fits, using the same action as is above related: At the end of which fits, he said he would go home to dinner, which accordingly he did, and at his going, he bad that none of them should sit upon his stool, if they did, he told them he should know it. The boy being at home at din|ner fell down flat on his back, spreading his arms much to my admirati|on; but suddainly he got up and said, I know that some body hath sat up|on my stool. When he was about to eat (according to his accustomed manner) he went behind the door to sing, but said he, I will not sing, (at which time he was like to be choaked with his food) as he often would say, but till he did sing he could not swallow one bit. After he had ate he went again in haste to the Neighbours house, where my Friends were still waiting for his coming; as soon as he came, he told them, That some of them had sat upon his stool; they seemingly denyed, but he confi|dently affirmed, they did; which at the last, they that sate thereon did confess, and wonder how he should know it. After this he would walk up and down in a frantick manner with a hammer in his hand, often cal|ling upon four persons, viz. Sam. Man, Iohn Sames, Mol Williams, Mary Prett; saying, Mary, O Mary, O brave Mol, I'll fit you Mol, often throwing the hammer behind the door: Thus he continued part of the day calling over the aforesaid Names. Many asked me when they heard him, Whether I knew any such? My answer was, I knew none but I supposed they were such canting names suitable to him that taught him, and caused all the rest of his troubles. At another time as he was sitting at a Table, he had gotten paper, a pen, and ink, and a pin; I seeing him have a pin, ask him, what he would do with that pin? he answered not, but hung down his head as though he had been ashamed; I then spake hastily to him, and took the pin from him, at which he fell a crying; with that I asked him again, what he would do with that pin? then he asked me, whether God were not above the Devil? I said, Yea, God is above the Devil, he told me then, he must write down that: I would not be so put off, but would know what he would do with the pin, but no answer could I get for a while, at length he told me there was a young man, that prayed with him, and told him, that if he would go with him to such a place in the Country, that then he should be well. This was all I could get from him, suppo|sing these put offs were of the Devil, who would not suffer him to tell me what he would do with it. At another time he sate with his legs across; I went to him and pul|led his legs asunder, with that he fell a screeking out, and called for his mother to pull off his hose and shoes, which she did, and found his legs and feet so cold, that there was no heat at all to be felt in them; my wife then applied some warm clothes to them, but the boy seemed to be in extream torture, crying out in a very lamentable manner for three quarters of an hour, O what shall I do! O what shall I do! &c. at last he cal|led for his hose and shoes to put them on again, but could not by reason of the pain he was in; but so soon, as by our help, they were got on, he presently was well, and leaped up and down the room as at other times. At another time as he was sitting in the yard on a block, a Rat did ap|pear to him (as he said) unto which he was heard to say, Satan, thou must be burned in hell fire, and all that do obey thee, often rehearsing these words: and further said, that Christ was manifest to destroy the works of the Devil. Neighbours coming in, and hearing these sayings, and seeing his actions (for he sate fillipping with his fingers) did very much wonder at it. He said moreover, the Rat told him he must go up stairs, and play with his pretty Rat there; and up stairs he would often go: He also had a little box with single money in it, which would sometimes be for|ced out of his hand, which he would strive to take up often, repeating these words, I will not sing, I will not sing, but could by no means take it up, except he did sing. He had many times very strange actions, sometimes after this, and sometimes after that manner, as running up and down the house with his hands to his ears, and hopping, as though he were mad: sometimes he would sweat very much; and sometimes he would labour and strive, as if he had been ready to be choaked, with some thing that did rise in his throat: sometimes he would be confined to a place where my ser|vants were at work, in which place he would lye down with his back up|on a board, stretching forth his arms, and beat himself on the face and head as hard as he could; and this he would do often in a day, rising very much like a Changling. Diverse times as we did walk abroad toge|ther he would be taken with lameness, his limbs hanging down, inso|much that I was forced to bring him home in mens arms: Sometimes he must be drawn behind a door in a chair, and there be forced to sing, &c. One thing more is very observable, that when I did set him to read, he could not utter the name of God, nor of Christ, but any other words he would speak very well. Moreover, if any other did take the Bible, and mention the word God or Christ in his hearing, he would roar and cry, making a hideous noise.()