The Domestic Familiar

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Forbes, the great Scotch lawyer, says that 'to some he [the Devil] gives certain Spirits or Imps to correspond with, and serve them as their Familiars, known to them by some odd

[1. From an unpublished trial in the Justiciary Court at Edinburgh.

Names, to which they answer when called. These Imps are said to be kept in Pots or other Vessels.'[1] Though the domestic familiar is thus mentioned in the law of Scotland, it never occurs in the trials. It is confined so strictly to England that Hutchinson is able to say 'I meet with little mention of Imps in any Country but ours, where the Law makes the feeding, suckling, or rewarding of them to be Felony'.[2] It is not found north of Lancashire, and the chief records are in Essex, Suffolk, and the other Eastern counties.

The domestic familiar was always a small animal, was fed in a special manner on bread and milk and blood, and was kept, as Forbes points out, in a box or earthen pot on a bed of wool. It was used for working magic on the persons and property of other people, never for divining. Giffard records the general belief: 'The witches have their spirits, some hath one, some hath more, as two, three, foure, or five, some in one likenesse, and some in another, as like cats, weasils, toades, or mise, whom they nourish with milke or with a chicken, or by letting them suck now and then a drop of bloud.'[3]

In the earlier trials the witches confessed to pricking the hands or face and giving the resulting drop or drops of blood to the familiar. In the later trials this has developed into the sucking of the witch's blood by the familiar; and the supernumerary nipple, which was so marked a feature of the English witches, was popularly supposed to be caused by such sucking. It is more probable, however, that the witch who was possessed of a supernumerary nipple would regard it as something supernatural, and would use it to nourish a supernatural animal.

Elizabeth Francis, tried at Chelmsford in 1556,

'learned this arte of witchcraft of hyr grandmother whose nam mother Eue. Item when shee taughte it her, she counseiled her to renounce GOD and his worde and to geue of her bloudde to Sathan (as she termed it) whyche she delyuered her in the lykenesse of a whyte spotted Catte, and taughte her to feede the sayde Catte with breade and mylke, and she

dyd so, also she taughte her to cal it by the name of Sathan and to kepe it in a basket. Item that euery tyme that he did any thynge for her, she sayde that he required a drop of blonde, which she gaue him by prycking herselfe, sometime in one place and then in an other. When shee had kept this Cat by the space of XV or XVI yeare, and as some saye (though vntruly) beinge wery of it, she came to one mother Waterhouse her neyghbour, she brought her this cat in her apron and taught her as she was instructed by her grandmother Eue, telling her that she must cal him Sathan and geue him of her bloude and breade and milke as before. Mother Waterhouse receyued this cat of this Frances wife in the order as is before sayde. She (to trye him what he coulde do) wyld him to kyll a hog of her owne, which he dyd, and she gaue him for his labour a chicken, which he fyrste required of her and a drop of her blod. And thys she gaue him at all times when he dyd anythynge for her, by pricking her hand or face and puttinge the bloud to hys mouth whyche he sucked, and forthwith wold lye downe in hys pot againe, wherein she kepte him. Another tym she rewarded hym as before, wyth a chicken and a droppe of her bloud, which chicken he eate vp cleane as he didde at the rest, and she cold fynde remaining neyther bones nor fethers. Also she said that when she wolde wyl him to do any thinge for her, she wolde say her Pater noster in laten. Item, this mother Waterhouse confessed that shee fyrst turned this Cat into a tode by this meanes, she kept the cat a great while in woll in a pot, and at length being moued by pouertie to occupie the woll, she praied in the name of the father and of the sonne, and of the holy ghost that it wold turne into a tode, and forthwith it was turned into a tode, and so kept it in the pot without woll.'[1]

In 1579 at Windsor

'one Mother Dutton dwellyng in Cleworthe Parishe keepeth a Spirite or Feende in the likenesse of a Toade, and fedeth the same Feende liyng in a border of greene Hearbes, within her Garden, with blood whiche she causeth to issue from her owne flancke. Mother Deuell, dwellyng nigh the Ponde in Windesore, hath a Spirite in the shape of a Blacke Catte, and calleth it Gille, whereby she is aided in her Witchcrafte, and she daiely feedeth it with Milke, mingled with her owne bloud. Mother Margaret, dwellying in the Almeshouse at Windesore, dooeth feede a Kitlyng or Feende by her named Ginnie, with crummes of bread and her owne blood. The saied Elizabeth Stile, of her self confesseth that she the same

[1. Witches at Chelmsford, pp. 24-32; Philobiblon Soc., viii.]

Elizabeth kept a Ratte, beeyng in very deede a wicked Spirite, namyng it Philip, and that she fedde the same Ratte with bloode, issuing from her right handwrest, the markes whereof euidently remaine.'[1]

At St. Osyth in Essex in 1582 Thomas Rabbet, aged eight, said that his mother Ursley Kemp 'hath foure seuerall spirites, the one called Tyffin, the other Tittey, the third Pigine, and the fourth Iacke: and being asked of what colours they were, saith, that Tyttey is like a little grey Cat,[2] Tyffin is like a white lambe, Pygine is black like a Toad, and Iacke is blacke like a Cat. And hee saith, hee hath seen his mother at times to giue thie{m} beere to drinke, and of a white Lofe or Cake to eate, and saith that in the night time the said spirites will come to his mother, and sucke blood of her vpon her armes and other places of her body.' Febey Hunt, stepdaughter of Ales Hunt of the accused witches, stated that 'shee hath seen her mother to haue two little thinges like horses,[3] the one white, the other blacke, the which shee kept in a little lowe earthen pot with woll, colour white and blacke, and that they stoode in her chamber by her bed side, and saith, that shee hath seene her mother to feede them with milke'. Ales Hunt herself said that 'shee had within VI. dayes before this examination two spirits, like unto little Coltes, the one blacke, and the other white: And saith she called them by the names of Iacke and Robbin. This Examinate saith that her sister (named Margerie Sammon) hath also two spirites like Toades, the one called Tom, and the other Robbyn.' Ursley Kemp confessed that 'about a quarter of a yere past, she went vnto mother Bennets house for a messe of milke, the which shee had promised her: But at her comming this examinate saith shee knocked at her dore, and no bodie made her any answere, whereupon shee went to her chamber windowe and looked in therat, saying, ho, ho, mother Bennet are you at home: And

2. Also called Tissey. Compare the name of the magic cat given to Frances More by Goodwife Weed, p. 219.

3. In Ales Hunt's own confession (q.v.) the animals in question are called colts. I would suggest that this is cotes, the well-known provincialism for cats; but the recorder understood the word as colts and further improved it into horses.]

casting her eyes aside, slice saw a spirit lift up a clothe, lying ouer a pot, looking much lik a Ferret. And it being asked of this examinate why the spirite did looke vpon her, shee said it was hungrie.[1] Elizabeth Bennet acknowledged that she had two 'spirits, one called Suckin, being blacke like a Dogge, the other called Lierd, beeing red like a Lion. Suckin this examinat saith is a hee, and the other a shee. Many tymes they drinke of her milke bowle. And when, and as often as they did drinke of the mylke: This Examynate saith they went into the sayd earthen pot, and lay in the wooll.' Ursley Kemp also gave evidence concerning Ales Hunt's familiars: 'About the foureteene or fifteene day of Januarie last, shee went to the house of William Hunt to see howe his wife did, and shee being from home, slice called at her chamber window and looked in, and then espied a spirite to looke out of a potcharde from vnder a clothe, the nose thereof beeing browne like vnto a Ferret.'[1] In 1588 in Essex an old woman, whose name is not given,

'confessed all: Which was this in effect: that she had three spirits: one like a cat, which she called Lightfoot, another like a toad, which she called Lunch, the third like a Weasill, which she called Makeshift. This Lightfoot, she said, one mother Barlie of W. solde her aboue sixteene yeares agoe, for an ouen cake, and told her the Cat would doe her good seruice, if she woulde, she might send her of her errand: this Cat was with her but a while, but the Weasill and the Toad came and offered their seruice: The Cat would kill kine, the Weasil would kill horses, the Toad would plague men in their bodies. There was one olde mother W. of great T. which had a spirite like a Weasill: she was offended highlie with one H. M. home she went, and called forth her spirite, which lay in a pot of woll vnder her bed, she willed him to goe plague the man; he required what she would give him. She said she would give him a cocke, which she did.' Another Mother W. 'sayd she had a spirit in the likenesse of a yellow dun cat'.[2]

In Lancashire in 1613 old mother Demdike confessed that 'vpon a Sabbath day in the morning, this Examinate hauing

[1. Witches taken at St. Oses, A 3, A 5, C 3 and 4, B 2, B 5 and C 1, B 3. 2. Giffard, pp. 19, 27, 39.]

a litle Child vpon her knee, and she being in a slumber, the sayd Spirit appeared vnto her in the likenes of a browne Dogg, forcing himselfe to her knee, to get blood vnder her left Arme: and she being without any apparrell sauing her Smocke, the said Deuill did get blood vnder her left arme.'[1] Of the witches who plagued the Fairfax family at Fewstone in 1621, five had domestic familiars: Margaret Waite's was 'a deformed thing with many feet, black of colour, rough with hair, the bigness of a cat'; her daughter, Margaret Waite, had as 'her spirit, a white cat spotted with black, and named Inges'; Jennet Dibble had 'her spirit in the shape of a great black cat called Gibbe, which hath attended her now above 40 years'; Dibble's daughter, Margaret Thorpe, had a 'familiar in the shape of a bird, yellow of colour, about the bigness of a crow the name of it is Tewhit'; Elizabeth Dickenson's spirit was 'in the likeness of a white cat, which she calleth Fillie, she hath kept it twenty years'.[2] The witch of Edmonton, Elizabeth Sawyer, in 1621, said: 'It is eight yeares since our first acquaintance, and three times in the weeke, the Diuell would come and see mee; he would come sometimes in the morning, and sometimes in the evening. Alwayes in the shape of a dogge, and of two collars, sometimes of blacke and .sometimes of white. I gaue him leaue to sucke of my bloud, the which hee asked of me. When he came barking to mee he then had done the inischiefe that I did bid him to doe for me. I did call the Diuell by the name of Tom. I did stroake him on the backe, and then he would becke vnto me, and wagge his tayle as being therewith contented.'[3] Margaret Johnson, another Lancashire witch in 1633, 'alsoe saith, yt when her devill did come to sucke her pappe, hee usually came to her, in ye liknes of a cat, sometymes of one colour, and sometymes on (sic) an other. And yt since this trouble befell her, her spirit hath left her, and shee never sawe him since.'[4]

From 1645 to 1647 are the chief records of the witch trials of Essex and the eastern counties, celebrated as the scene of Matthew Hopkins's work. The Essex trials took place in

3. Wonderfull Discouerie of Elizabeth Sawyer. 3. Whitaker. p. 216.]

1645: John Sterne, Hopkins's assistant, deposed that when watching Elizabeth Clarke.

'the said Elizabeth desired this informant, and the rest that were in the roome with her, to sit downe, and said, shee would shew this informant and the rest some of her impes: and within halfe an houre there appeared a white thing in the likeness of a cat, but not altogether so big: and being asked, if she would not be afraid of her impes, the said Elizabeth answered, "What, do yee think I am afraid of my children?" And that shee called the name of that white impe, Hoult. And this informant further saith, That presently after there appeared another white impe, with red spots, as big as a small dog, which shee then called Jarmara: and that immediately after, there appeared at the threshold of the doore another impe about the bignesse of the first, but did presently vanish away. And then the said Elizabeth being asked, if any more impes would come? she answered, "That Vinegar Tom would come by and by". And forthwith there appeared another in the likenesse of a dumb dogge, somewhat bigger than any of the former. And the said Elizabeth also told this informant, that shee had three impes from her mother, which were of a browne colour, and two from the old beldam Weste; and that there had five [? four] impes appeared, but shee had one more, called Sack and Sugar. And the said Elizabeth further confessed to this informant, that shee had one impe for which she would fight up to the knees in bloud, before shee would lose it; and that her impes did commonly suck on the old beldam Weste, and that the said beldam's impes did suck on her the said Elizabeth likewise. Anne Leech saith, That she had a grey impe sent to her, and that this examinant, together with the said Elizabeth Clark, and Elizabeth the wife of Edward Gooding, did about a yeer since, send their imps to kill a black cowe and a white cowe of Mr. Edwards, which was done accordingly. And this examinant saith, that she sent her grey impe, Elizabeth Clark a black imp, and Elizabeth Gooding a white imp. And this examinant confesseth, that she and the said Elizabeth Gooding, sent either of them an imp to destroy the childe of the said Mr. Edwards; this examinant's imp being then a white one, and Elizabeth Gooding's a black imp; and that about thirty yeers since, this examinant had the said white imp and two others, a grey and a black imp of one Anne, the wife of Robert Pearce of Stoak in Suffolk, being her brother; and that these imps went commonly from one to another, and did mischief where ever they went; and that when this examinant did not send and imploy them abroad to do mischief, she had not her health, but when they were imployed, she was healthfull and well, and that these imps did usually suck those teats which were found about the privie parts of her body. Hellen Clark confesseth, that about six weeks since, the Devill. appeared to her in her house, in the likenesse of a white dog, and that she calleth that familiar Elimanzer; and that this examinant hath met often fed him with milk pottage. Rebecca West saith, that about a month since, the aforesaid Anne Leech, Elizabeth Gooding, Hellen Clark, Anne West, and this examinant, met all together at the house of the aforesaid Elizabeth Clark in Mannyntree, where they spent some time in praying unto their familiars, and every one in order went to prayers; afterwards some of them read in a book, the book being Elizabeth Clarks; and this examinant saith, that forthwith their familiars appeared, and every one of them made their severall propositions to those familiars, what every one of them desired to have effected. The Information of Matthew Hopkins, Gent. taken upon oath before the said justices. This informant saith, That being lately at Colchester, he went to the castle, where the said Rebecca Weste, with the other five, are secured until the next gaole delivery: and this informant going to Rebecca Weste, and asking her how shee came first to be a witch, the said Rebecca told this informant, that about a yeare since, or thereabouts, halfe an houre before sun-set, the said Anne Weste (her mother) carried the said Rebecca Weste towards Mannintree (which is about a small mile from the place where the said Anne dwelt) and the said Rebecca told this informant, that as her mother and shee walked together, the said Anne told the said Rebecca, shee must keepe secret whatsoever shee saw, whither they were then going; and the said Rebecca promised so to doe; and the said Rebecca told this informant, that her mother and shee went to the house of the aforesaid Elizabeth Clarke, where at their comming in they found the aforesaid Anne Leech, widow, Elizabeth Gooding, Hellen Clarke, and the house-keeper Elizabeth Clarke, and that forthwith the Devill appeared to them in the shape of a dogge; afterwards in the shape of two kitlyns; then in the shape of two dogges; and that the said familiars did doe homage in the first place to the said Elizabeth Clarke, and skipped up into her lap and kissed her; and then went and kissed all that were in the roome, except the said Rebecca: and the said Rebecca told this informant, that immediately one of the company asked the said Anne her mother, if shee had acquainted her daughter (the said Rebecca) with the businesse. [Rebecca then took an oath of secrecy]; after she had consented to all these things, the Devill. came into her lap, and kissed her, and promised to doe for her what she could desire. The Information of Elizabeth Otley of Wyvenhoe, taken upon oath before the said justices. This informant saith, that Alice Dixon, who now stands committed for a suspected witch, did in the presence of Mary Johnson of the same town, charge and accuse the said Mary Johnson to be the death of this informant's child, saying, that the said Mary Johnson did carry an impe in her pocket to this informant's house, and put the said impe into the house, at an hole in the doore, bidding it go rock the cradle, and do the businesse she sent it about. The Information of Joseph Long, Minister of Clacton in the County of Essex, taken before the said justices. This informant saith, that Anne the wife of John Cooper of Clacton aforesaid, being accused for a witch: Confessed unto this informant, that she the said Anne hath had three black impes suckled on the lower parts of her body; called by the names of Wynowe, Jeso, and Panu. And the said Anne further confessed unto this informant, that she the said Anne offered to give unto her daughter Sarah Cooper an impe in the likenes of a gray kite [kit], to suck on the said Sarah; which impes name the said Anne called Tom boy; and told the said Sarah, there was a cat for her. This informant Henry Cornwall saith, that the said Margaret [Moone] did confesse to him that she had twelve impes, and called them by their names; of which he remembers onely these following: Jesus, Jockey, Sandy, Mrit. Elizabeth, and Collyn. The information of Francis Milles, taken upon oath before the said justices. This informant saith, that she asking the said Margaret [Moone] for her impes, which sucked those teats; she said, if she might have some bread and beere, she would call her said impes; which being given unto her, she put the bread into the beere, and set it against an hole in the wall, and made a circle round the pot, and then cried, Come Christ, come Christ, come Mounsier, come Mounsier: And no impe appearing, she cried out and said, she had devilish daughters, which had carried her impes away in a white bagge, and wished they might be searched. The information of Francis Stock, and John Felgate, taken upon oath before the said justices. The said Francis and John say, that the said Sarah Barton, told them, that the said Marian [Hocket] had given and delivered unto her the said Sarah three imps, and that the said Marian called them by the names of Littleman, Pretty-man, and Dainty. This examinant, Elizabeth Harvie saith, that about halfe a yeer since, the said Marian Hocket brought three things to her house, two of them being smaller than mouses, and the other somewhat bigger and longer; and 'that the said Marian told this examinant they were pretty things, and would do her and this examinant good, if shee this examinant would keep them. Rose Hallybread saith, that about fifteen or sixteen yeers since, there was an imp brought to her house by one Goodwife Hagtree, which imp this examinant entertained, fed it with oatmeale, and suckled it on her body, for the space of a yeer and a halfe, or thereabouts, and then lost it: And this examinant further saith, that about half a yeer since, one Joyce Boanes (who is now also accused for Witchcraft), brought to this examinants house another imp, in the likenesse of a small grey bird, which this examinant received. And this examinant further saith, that about eight dayes since, Susan Cock, Margaret Landish, and Joyce Boanes, (all which stand now suspected for Witchcraft) brought to this examinants house each of them an imp, (in all three) to which this examinant added one of her own imps; and then the said Joyce Boanes carryed the said four imps to the house of one Robert Turner, to torment his servant. Joyce Boanes saith, that about thirteen yeers since, shee had two imps which came into the bed to her in the likenesse of mouses, and that they sucked on this examinants body. And this examinant also saith, that she carried one of her said imps, called Rug, to the house of the said Rose Hallybread; and that her said imp Rug, with the three imps of the said Rose Hallybread, Susan Cock, and Margaret Landish, each of them sending one, were carried by this examinant from the house of the said Rose Hallybread, to the house of the said Robert Turner to kill the servant of the said Robert. Susan Cock saith, that about three or four yeeres since, one Margery Stoakes, this examinants mother, lying upon her death-bed, and this examinant comming to visit her, shee the said Margery desired this examinant privately to give entertainment to two of her imps, and withall told this examinant, they would do this examinant good: And this examinant saith, that the same night her said mother dyed, the said two imps came to her accordingly, and sucked on her body: And this examinant saith, that one of the said imps was like a mouse, and the name of that was Susan; that the other was of a yellow colour, about the bigness of a cat; and that the name of that imp was Besse. Rebecca Jones saith, that as shee was going to St. Osyth (where this examinant doth now dwell) to sell her said masters butter, a man met with her, being in a ragged suite, and having such great eyes, that this examinant was much afraid of him; who came to this examinant, and gave her three things like to moules, having foure feet a piece, but without tayles, and of a black colour, and bid this examinant nurse the said three things, untill he did desire them againe; And this examinant asked the said man, what she should give them to eate, and he told this examinant milke, and that they would not hurt her, and wished her not to be afraid of them. And the said man told this examinant, that those three things which he gave her, would avenge her on her enemies, and bid her murther some, but not too many, and he would forgive her; and then went away from this examinant. And this examinant saith, that the names of her three imps were Margaret, Amie, and Susan. And that a while after, this examinant and one Joyce Boanes, now in prison, did send each of them an impe to kill one Thomas Bumstead of St. Osyth: And that the impe which the said Joyce Boanes sent was a dund one like unto a mouse. Johan Cooper saith, That she hath been a witch about twenty yeers, and hath three familiars, two like mouses, and the third like a frog; the names of the two like mouses are Jack, and the other Prickeare, and the name of the third, like a frog, is Frog. Anne Cate saith, That she hath four familiars, which shee had from her mother, about two and twenty yeeres since, and that the names of the said imps are James, Prickeare, Robyn, and Sparrow: and that three of these imps are like mouses, and the fourth like a sparrow, which she called Sparrow.'[1]

In 1646 the Huntingdonshire witches were tried. Elizabeth Weed of Great Catworth confessed that

'about one and twenty yeares since she being saying her Prayers in the evening about bedtime, there did appeare unto her three Spirits, one in the likeness of a young man or boy, and the other two of two Puppies, the one white and the other black. Being demanded the name of the lesser Spirits, shee saith the name of the white one was Lilly, and the blacke one Priscill; and that the office of Lilly was to hurt man, woman, or childe; and the office of Priscill was to hurt Cattell when she desired. Francis Moore saith, that about eight yeares since she received a little blacke puppy from one Margaret Simson of great Catworth, which dog the said Margaret had in her bed with her, and took it thence when she gave it to the Examinate: The Examinate further saith, that the said Margaret told her, that she must keep that dogge all her life time; and if she cursed any Cattell, and set the same dog upon them, they should presently dye, and the said Margaret told her that she had named it already, his name was Pretty. And the said Examinate further saith, that about the same time one goodwife Weed gave her a white Cat, telling her, that if she would deny God, and affirme the same by her bloud, then whomsoever she cursed and sent that Cat unto, they should dye shortly after. Whereupon the said Examinate

saith that shee did deny God, and in affirmation thereof shee pricked her finger with a thorne, whence issued bloud, which the Cat presently licked, and the said goodwife (sic) Weed named the Cat Tissy. And she further saith, that she killed the said Dog and Cat about a yeare since.-Joan Wallis of Keiston said [that the Devil came to her] and shee asked what his name was, and he said his name was Blackeman, and asked her if she were poore, and she said I; then he told her he would send one Grissell and Greedigut to her, that shall do any thing for her. And after Blackman was departed from her, within three or four dayes, Grissell and Greedigut came to her, in the shapes of dogges with great brisles of hogges haire upon their backs.' The accounts given by John Winnick, Ellen Shepheard, and Anne Desborough suggest that they are confused amplifications of the ritual to be observed in taking a familiar, the ritual being clearly given in the confession of Francis Moore when she was presented with the cat Tissy. John Winnick said, 'On a Friday being in the barne [where he lost his purse] there appeared unto him a Spirit, blacke and shaggy, and having pawes like a Beare, but in bulk not fully so big as a Coney. The Spirit asked him what he ailed to be so sorrowfull, this Examinate answered that he had lost a purse and money, and knew not how to come by it againe. The Spirit replied, if you will forsake God and Christ, and fall down and worship me for your God, I will help you to your purse and mony againe: This Examinate said he would, and thereupon fell down upon his knees and held up his hands. Then the Spirit said, tomorrow about this time of the day, you shall find your purse. Whereupon at the time prefixed, this Examinate went unto the place, and found his purse upon the floore and tooke it up, and looking afterwards into it, he found there all the money that was formerly lost: but before he had looked into it, the same Spirit appears unto him, and said, there is your purse and your money in it: and then this Examinate fell downe upon his knees and said, my Lord and God I thanke you. The said Spirit at that time brought with him two other Spirits, for shape, bignesse, and colour, the one like a white Cat, the other like a grey Coney: and while this Examinate was upon his knees, the Beare Spirit spake to him, saying, you must worship these two Spirits as you worship me, and take them for your Gods also: then this Examinate directed his bodie towards them, and call'd them his Lords and Gods. Then the Beare Spirit told him that when he dyed he must have his soule, whereunto this Examinate yielded. Hee told him then also that they must suck of his body, to which this Examinate also yielded. Ellen Shepheard saith that about five years since, when she was in her homsted at Molesworth, there appeared unto her a Spirit, somewhat like a Rat, but not fully so big, of an iron-grey colour, and said you must goe with me, and she said, I will not, avoid Satan, and thereupon he went away. Shee saith, that within a short time after, going into the field, cursing, and fretting, and blaspheming, there appeared three Spirits more with the former in the fashion of Rats, of an iron-grey, and said, you must forsake God and Christ, and goe with me, and take those Spirits for your Gods, and you shall have all happinesse, whereunto she consented: And moreover they said unto her, that when she dyed, they must have her body and soule, and said they must have blood from her, which she granted, and thereupon they sucked her upon and about her hippes. Anne Desborough confesseth, that about thirty yeares since, the first weeke of Cleane Lent, there appeared unto her a thing some-what bigger than a Mouse, of a brown colour, and of the likenesse of a mouse. This was while shee lived at Tichmarsh in the County of Northampton: she being there in bed, and in a dreame, the said likenesse then gave her a nip, and thereby awakened her out of her dreame, and then told her (when she was awakened) that it must have part of her soule; whereupon she was in a great feare, and gave him no answer, but prayed to God, and thereupon it vanished away from her. About five dayes after, the same Mouse appeared to her againe, bringing with it another Mouse, about the bignesse of an ordinary Mouse, or very little bigger, browne like the former, save Only that the latter had some white about the belly, whereas the former was all browne. Then the Mouse that first appeared, said, we must sucke of your body. She yielded to them, and said, they should; upon her yielding, they went to her and sucked of her bodie, where the markes are found. The bigger mouse she called Tib, and the lesser Jone. Tib told her that she must forsake God and Christ, and take them for her Gods, telling her that when she dyed, they must have her soule, to all which she yielded.'[1]

In Cambridgeshire in 1647 Dorothy Ellis 'saith that about thirtie yeares since shee being much troubled in her minde there appeared unto hir the Devell in the liknes of a great catt and speak unto this ex t and demanded of hir hir blood wch she gave hime after which the spirit in the liknes of a catt suck upon the body of this ex, and the first thing this ext commanded her spirit to doe was to goe and be witch four of the cattell of Tho. Hitch all which cattell presently died'.[2] John

Palmer of St. Albans in 1649, 'upon his compact with the Divel, received a flesh brand, or mark, upon his side, which gave suck to two familiars, the one in the form of a dog, which he called George, and the other in the likeness of a woman, called Jezebell.'[1] Of the Somerset witches in 1664, Alice Duke 'confesseth that her Familiar doth commonly suck her right Breast about seven at night, in the shape of a little Cat of a dunnish colour, which is as smooth as a Want, and when she is suckt, she is in a kind of a Trance. Christian Green saith, The Devil doth usually suck her left Brest about five of the Clock in the Morning in the likeness of an Hedghog, bending, and did so on Wednesday Morning last. She saith that it is painful to her, and that she is usually in a trance when she is suckt.'[2] In 1665 Abre Grinset of Dunwich in Suffolk 'did confess, that the Devil did appear in the form of a Pretty handsom Young Man first; and since Appeareth to her in the form of a blackish Gray Cat or Kitling, that it sucketh of a Tett and hath drawn blood'.[3]

The only published account of the animal familiar in France shows a combination of the two classes, for the creature was a toad kept in the house, fed in a particular way, and used for divination.

Silvain Nevillon and Gentien le Clerc were tried at Orleans in 1614. Silvain confessed

'qu'iI y a des Sorciers qui nourrissent des Marionettes, qui sont de petits Diableteaux en forme de Crapaux, & leur font manger de la bouillie composée de laict & de farine, & leur donnent le premier mourceau, & n'oseroient s'absenter de leur maison sans leur demander congé, & luy faut dire combien de temps ils seront absens, comme trois ou quatre iours, & si elles disent que c'est trop, ceux qui les gardent, n'osent faire leur voyage ny outre-passer leur volonté. Et quand ils veulent aller en marchandise ou ioüer, & sçauoir s'il y fera bon, ils regardent si les-dites Marionettes sont ioyeuses, en ce cas ils vont en marchandise, ou ioüer: mais si elles sont maussades & tristes, ils ne bougent de la maison. Gentil ou Gentie{n} le Clerc dit qu'il y auoit plus d'acquest en sa Marionette qu'en Dieu. Et auoit veu souuent la Marionette dudit Neuillon, qui

est comme vn gros crapaut tout noir, comme d'vne fourrure noire, & estoit dans vne boëtte caché soubs vn carreau, qui sautoit & leuoit quand on vouloit donner a manger audit crapaut. Qu'il l'a veu encore puis six sepmaines en la ruelle du lict dudict Neuillon, & qu'il a veu qu'il l'apportoit vne autre fois dans son manteau, qu'il luy a dit vne douzaine de fois, que s'iI vouloit it luy en feroit auoir vne. Qu'il y auoit plus profit en icelle qu'en Dieu, & qu'il gagneroit rien à regarder Dieu: mais que sa Marionette luy apportoit tousiours quelque chose.'[1] With this may be compared the account of a Lapp familiar in 1653: 'Dans chaque maison it y a un gros chat noir, duquel its font grand estime, parlant à luy comme s'il avoit de la raison, ne font rien qu'il ne luy communique, croyans qu'il leur aide en leurs entreprises, ne manquans tous les soirs de sortir de leurs cabannes pour le consulter, & les suit par tout oh its vont, tant à la pesche qu'à la chasse. Quoy que cet animal ait la figure d'un chat par son regard, qui est épouvantable, j'ay creu & croy encore que c'est un Diable familier.'

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