Demonology: Home

[Demonic Possession]    [Exorcism]    [Demonologists]    [Historical Connections]    [Works Cited]

Demonology, or the scientific study of demons, was a flourishing science during the 15th and 16th centuries in Europe at the height of the witch craze.


(Conrad Dinckmut, Devil and Woman, 1483)

The above image, from which our site icon was taken, demonstrates the popular belief of demonologists and the public that women were more susceptible to the influence of the Devil. As this image shows, it was believed that the primary goal of the Devil was to lure individuals away from the Catholic church to his service where they would help him wreak havoc on society. 

The study of demonology and the influence of demonologists intensified the witch hunt because it collected various popular beliefs and circulated them in a form that provided a substantial mechanism for which to persecute witches. Demonology provided a way to explain sickness, diseases, or events that could not otherwise be explained. Since most demonologists were Catholics, the study was also part of the Counter-Reformation designed to entice people back to the Catholic church. With an increase in scientific knowledge during the early 17th century, the influence of demonology and consequently the witch hunt declined.

In this site, we have attempted to present substantial information about some of the main aspects of demonology as well as to provide a historical analysis that helps explain these bizarre events and beliefs in the context of the historical time period.






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