Oct 12, 2023 - Sale 2648

Sale 2648 - Lot 271

Price Realized: $ 4,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 3,000 - $ 5,000
Webster, John (1610-1682)
The Displaying of Supposed Witchcraft.

London: Printed by J.M., 1677.

First edition, folio, imprimatur bound opposite the title page, bound in full contemporary English calfskin, ruled and tooled in blind compartments, slightly rubbed, joints starting, unsophisticated, final blank integral and present; several early ownership inscriptions on free endleaves; ex libris Janus Foundation with bookplate; 11 1/2 x 7 1/2 in.

Webster was a cleric and physician who maintained a strong interest in occult matters but was a skeptic on the subject of witchcraft. He argues that witchcraft accusations grow out of delusions due to "melancholy and fancy" and asserts that in this book, the claim that witches make a "corporeal league" with the devil and "are turned into cats, dogs, raise tempests, or the like, is utterly denied and disproved."

Wing W-1230; ESTC R12517.

From Dr. Michael Stone's Psychiatry Collection.