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or the cause that sa lang as he had them upon him he sould
never want siller.
15th Item—Fylit for being in North Berwick kirk at ane convention with Satan and other witches, where Satan made ane devilitch sermon, where the said Johnne sat upon the left side of the pulpit nearest him; and the sermon being endit, he came down and tuke the said Johnne by the hand and led him widdershins aboot, and thereafter causit him kiss him behind.
16th Item—Fylit for the chasing of ane cat in Tranent, in the quilk chase he was carreit heich above the ground with great swiftness, and as lichtly as the cat herself, ower ane dyke heicher nor he wes able to lay his hand on the tap of; and being enquirit to what effect he chased the same, answereit that, in ane convention haldin at Brumhollis, Satan commanded all that wes present ta tak cats, lyke as he for obedience to Satan chased the said cat purposely to be cassin in the sea, to raise wyndis for destruction of ships and boits.
17th Item—Fylit that for as muckle as be his airt of witchcraft, majic, and sorcerie, he gaif himself to declair to ony man how lang they sould live, and what sould be thair end, gif they wad tell the day of their birth, like as he foirtald the same to Marion Weddell, that her son sould not live xv. days, quhilk cam' to pass as he spak'.
18th Item—Fylit for declaring of the lyke to Alexander Bowis wyffe in Edinburgh, and saying " hir son wad be a short while in hir aucht, " as he died within a short space thereafter.
19th Item—Fylit for the receiving of thir directions and commandiments fra Satan: —1st, To deny God and all true religeon. 2nd, To gif his faith to the devil and adore him. 3rd, He said to the devil that he sould persuade as mony as he could to his societie. 4th, He dismemberit the bodies of the deid corpse, and specially of bairns unbaptisit. 5th, He destroyit men be land and sea, with cornis, cattell, and guideis, and raised tempests and stormy wedder, as the devil himself blawing in the air, etc.
20th Item—Fylit for ane common notorious witch and enchanter. Sentence: convict of divers poyntes of witchcraft, and to be brynt. "
Dr Feane, we learn, while imprisoned in Edinburgh jail, "seemed to have a care of his ain soul, and would call upon God, showing himself penitent for his wicked life. Nevertheless he found means to steal the key of the prison door, got out and fled to Saltpans, where he was always resident, and
first apprehendit. Of whose sudden departure, when the King's majesty had notice, he presently commanded diligent enquiry to be made for his apprehension, by public proclamation into all parts of the land to the same effect, by means of whose hot and hard pursuit, he was again taken and brought back to prison. He denied all. But through the confession he had been compelled to make in his own handwriting, by tortures most cruel, he was condemned and burnt on the Castlehill at Edinburgh, on January last, 1591. "
The confessions of Feane, Sampson, and others, are said to have caused the king considerable amusement; and in respect of the strangeness of these matters, he took great delight to be present at their examinations.
The following is another case bearing on the district: —
Catherine Liddel exhibited a complaint against Rutherford, baron bailie to Morrison of Prestongrange, and against David Cowan in Tranent, bearing that they had seized upon her, an innocent woman, and had defamed her as a witch, and detained her under restraint as a prisoner; and that the said Cowan had pricked her with his pins in sundry parts of her body, and bled and tortured her most cruelly.
The defence was, that she was delated by other witches mala fama arboratat, and was thereupon apprehended, and yet so kindly used as not to be thrust into any public prison, but kept in a private house. That she and her son-in-law consented that she might be searched, it being desired for the manifestation and vindication of her innocency.
As for the pricker: —1st. He learned his trade from Kincaid, a famous pricker. 2nd, He never came unsent for, because he was either called by sheriffs, magistrates of boroughs, ministers, baron bailies, etc. 3rd, The trade was not improbate, or condemned by any law among us. 4th, All divines and lawyers, when writing on witchcraft, acknowledge there are such marks, called by them stigmata sagarum. Why then may there not be an art for discerning them from other marks of the body? The Council may restrain that way of trial for the future, but must pardon bygones.
Answer 1st. —Denies consent.
2nd. —None can virtually consent to their own torture. As for the pricker, he was a cheat, and abused the people for gain; and the Chancellor remembered that he had caused imprison Kincaid at Kinross for abusing the country there.
The Lords of Privy Council first declared the woman innocent, and restored her to her good name and fame, and ordained
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