Born in the state that once countenanced these atrocities, Marion L. Starkey 1st published her deeply moving The Devil in Massachusetts in 1949. An authentic historical narrative, it takes its dialog from actual trial records but applies modern psychiatric knowledge to the witchcraft hysteria. At the same time the author's unerring sense of drama succeeds in creating the pity & terror so necessary to an understanding of the human capacity for evil and suffering.
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Salem, Massachusetts, was an early settlement in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, best remembered today for the witch trials of 1692. Based on groundless accusations, the trials for witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692 and 1693 resulted in the executions of 20 people. The Puritans were highly religious people who dissented from the Church of England and sought freedom of worship in the New World.