MALLEUS MALEFICARUM OF KRAMER & SPRENGER - 1988 WITCHES' HAMMER WITCHCRAFT SATAN
MALLEUS MALEFICARUM OF HEINRICH KRAMER AND JAMES SPRENGER
Book Details + Condition: Ayer Company Publishers (Salem, NH). Reprint Edition, 1988. Hardcover with dark red boards, and white titling (etc) to spine. 278 pages. Illustrated with engraved frontis portrait of Pope Innocent VIII. An uncommon reprint publication of the famous work, with Introductions, Bibliography and Notes by Montague Summers. In very good condition, with firm binding and a clean interior, free of markings.
Dominican friars Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger were charged by Pope Innocent VIII, with the Bull of 1484, which had essentially ratified the Church's powers in dealing with witchcraft, heresy and other crimes. Their goal was to investigate witchcraft, and they traveled throughout Germany gathering local lore and legend for the MALLEUS MALEFICARUM (The Witches’ Hammer). First published in 1486, the work provides detailed instructions for identifying, trying, torturing and executing witches. It also presents lurid tales of shape-shifters, incubi and succubi, and mortals in league with Satan. It is long considered the authority on the subject, and served to sustain two centuries of witch-hunting hysteria in Europe. The work is divided into three parts: the first two deal with the reality of witches as established by the Bible, as well as its nature and horrors and the manner of dealing with it, while the third lays down practical rules for procedure whether the trial be conducted in an ecclesiastical or a secular court. It was sensational in the stigma it attached to witchcraft as a worse crime than heresy - and in its notable animus against the female sex.