Malleus Maleficarum Discussion

Malleus Maleficarum Discussion

Bonus points may be earned by responding thoughtfully to the posts of your classmates. 



In Malleus Maleficarum, the first conclusion made by the author is that witchcraft comes from lust. Meaning women are clearly more likely to be a witch than men being a warlock because as the author says, “women [are] insatiable.” This is tied back to the story of Adam and Eve based on the fact that Eve was the insatiable one who partook of the fruit of life from Satan himself. The author even states it clearly from proverbs: “There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, a fourth thing which says not, It is enough; that is, the mouth of the womb.” Another resemblance to the bible is made when the author describes women as an incomplete animal. The author says “there was a defect in the formation of the first woman, since she was formed from a bent rib,” referencing that Eve was made from Adam’s rib and that is why all women are incomplete. A resemblance can be found between Malleus Maleficarum, the story of Adam and Eve, and the story of Persephone from last week. Both Eve and Persephone took the fruit that tainted them from the devil giving it them.

You can clearly tell that Malleus Maleficarum is written by a man based off the assumptions in the essay. The author’s very first descriptions of women is that they are more superstitious and impressionable. When I continue to read, I have to look more in depth to the descriptors he gives women, such as “slippery tongues, and are unable to conceal from the fellow-women those things which by evil arts they know,” meaning that women gossip. Continuing through the essay, the women is described as an incomplete animal with more sexual needs than a man. The author continues on this thought by saying women are “formed from a bent rib, that is, a rib of the breast, which is bent as it were in a contrary direction to a man.” In comparison of even women and mans ribs, they are different which taints the women for not being like her male counterpart.

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