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‘inrich Kramer Jakob Sprenger and Hei ANTIFEMALE PREJUDICES ‘The ambivalence in the male attitude (particularly of the intellectuals) toward ‘women arose from several sources. First, medieval and Renaissance authors, who highly esteemed the classical works of che ancient Greco-Roman civil tion, were influenced by the hostility evident in che writings of that era coward women who did not capt their position as subordinate and inferior co mer Second, the Christian v ieof men and women as equals in the sight of God was obscured by cert silence in the churches: ser ijural cexts, such as Saint Paul's “Let your women keep vic is not permitted unto them co speak” (1 Corintht - and “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). This ambivalent view of women was symbolized by the Old Testament portrait of Eve as che archerypal cempcress, who led Adam (0 the mother of Jesus made salvation possibl Mary, whose acceptance of clerical insistence that celibacy was superior to marriage (because the former avoided the distractions of the flesh and family ti fon spiricual mg passages fro lammer o and witchcraft, man and allowed concentration ncouraged preju dee aginst women. In the following kes (46 gc textbook on sorcery’ enger and Heinrich Krimer five vent co onti-female prejudices fs were nat uncommon then, Now the wickedness of women is spoken of in Ecclesia sicas xx1'[Old Testament book]: There is no head above the head of a seepene: and there is no wrath above the wrath of a woman. I hhad rather dwell with aon and a dragon than 0 keep house with a wicked woman. And among much which in chat place precedes and follows about a wicked woman, he concludes: All wickedness is but litle to the wickedness ‘of a woman, Wherefore (Saine] John Chrysos- ‘om [fourth-cencury bishop] says on the texc, It is not good to marty S. Matthew xix: What else is woman but a for to friendship, an un- ‘escapable punishment, a necessary evil, a tural temptation, a desicable calamity, a dames~ tic danger, a delectable detriment, an evil of acute, painced wich fair colours! Therefore if ic be asin to divorce her when she oughe to be kept, i is indeed a necessary torture; fr ether ‘we commit adultery by divorcing her, or we ‘muse endure daily serif. Cicero (Roman seates- ‘man and philosopher) in his second book of The Rbetorics says: The many lusts of men lead them inco one sin, but the one luse of women leads chem into all sins; for che roor of all woman's vices is avarice. And Seneca {Roman dramatist) says in his Tragedies: A woman either loves of haves; chere is no third grade. And the ceas of a woman are a deception, for they may spring from crue grief, or they may be a snare. When a ‘woman chinks alone, she thinks evil... . ‘Others again have propounded other reasons why there are more superstitious women found than men. And che ficszjs, chat chey ar emore credulous; and since the chief aim of eh edevil is to corrupt faith, therefore he rather att ahs them. See Elsiastiow sxix: He thae is qui é¢o believe is lightsminded, and shall be dimin - ished. The second teason is, that women are ‘naturally more impressionable, and more ready to receive the influence of a disembodied spire; and chac when they use chis quality well they are very good, bur when they use ic ill they are very evil, ‘The third reason 13 thae chey have slippery ‘ongues, and are unable co conceal from theit fellow-women those chings which by evil acts they know; and, since they are weak, they find an easy and secret manner of vindicating them- selves by witchcraft... . + (SJince they are feebler both in mind ‘come more under the spell of witchcraft. For as regards intellect, or che underscand- ing of spiritual things, they seem ¢o be of a different nacure from men; a face which is vouched for by the logic of the authorities, backed by various examples from the Scrip- tures, Terence [Roman dramatise] says: Women are incelleccualy like children. And Lactontius ourch-cencury Christian writer} Inattatione, Hb: No woman understood philosophy except Temeste.. Bue che natu nis thae she is more carnal than a man, as is cleat from her many carnal abominations. And ie should be noted 254 Part Two The Middle Ager that chere was a defect in the formation of the first woman, since she was formed from a bent rib, that is, a rib of che breast, which is bene a it ‘were ina contray direction oa man. And since through this defect she is an imperfect animal, she always deceives. For Caco (Roman seaesman} says: When a women weeps she weaves snares. ‘And again: When a woman weeps, she labours to deceive a man. And this is shown by Samson's wife (Delilah), who coaxed him co cell her the fiddle be had propounded to che Philistines, and told chem the answer, and so deceived him. And ic is clear in the case of the firse woman {Eve} that she had little faich; for when the serpent asked why they did noc eat of every tree in Par- adise, she answered: Of every tree, exc —lest per- chance we die, Thereby she showed char she doubted, and had litte faith in ehe word of God. ‘And allthis is indicated by the erymology of the ‘word; for Farina woman} comes from Fe {to produce} and Minas (les), since she is ever seaker to hold and preserve the fic. And this Blessed Virgin (Mary), even at the time of Chris's Passion, when ic failed in all men. ‘Therefore a wicked woman is by hee nature ‘quicker co waver in her faith, and consequenely ‘quicker co abjare the faith, witchcraft. ‘And as to her ocher mental quality, that is, het natural will; when she hates someone ‘whom she formerly loved, then she seethes with anger and impatience in her whole soul, just a5 the cides of the sea are always heaving and boiling, Many authorities allude to chis ‘cause, Eevlesastca xxv: There is no wrath above the wrath of a woman. And Seneca (Tragedia, VIED} No might of the flames or of the swollen winds, no deadly weapon is so much co be feared as the lust and hatred of a woman who hhas been divorced from the marriage bed. ‘And indeed, just as chrough the first defect in their intelligence they are more prone co ab- juce the faith; so through their second defect of inordinate affections and passions chey search for, brood over, and inflict various vengeances, either by witchcraft, o by some ocher means. ‘Wherefore itis no wonder that so great a num- ber of witches exist in cis sex. ‘Women also have weak memories; and ic is racural vice in chem not co be disciplined, bue to follow their own impulses without any sense ‘of what is due. ... ‘To conclude. All wicchcrafe comes from carnal fut, which is in women insatiable. See Proverbs sexx [Old Testament book): There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, a fourth thing ++. the mouth of the womb. Wherefore for the sake of fulfilling theit lusts they consort even ‘with devils, More such reasons could be broughe forward, bue to che understanding ic is suffi- ciently clear chat ic is 90 matter for wonder chat there are more women than men found infected with che heresy of witchcraft. And in conse- quence of this, i is bere called the heresy of witches cham of wizards, since the name is taken from the more powerful party. And blessed be the Highest Who has so far preserved the male sex from so great a crime, EERE SSeS HE gE EREEEECELECE