Interview with a Demon: Exorcism and Sensational Pamphlets in Loudun

By Elise Watson | Happy Halloween! Our spooky subject this week is the controversial affair of demonic possession in an Ursuline convent in Loudun, France, which circulated throughout the 1630s in popular pamphlets. Demonic possession was a common fear in the early modern period, and women and members of religious orders were seen as particularly […]

title, Malleus Maleficarum

Prosecuting Witches: A How-To Guide for Every Library

By Jamie Cumby | For Halloween, we at Preserving the World’s Rarest Books are looking at an infamous early modern text on the supernatural: the Malleus Maleficarum.  This guide for prosecuting cases of witchcraft draws on anecdotes ripped from the experiences of its Inquisitor author. It was first printed in 1487 (USTC 746011) and went […]