f the supernatural powers existed, manifestation of such beliefs in the form of witch hunts and witch trials became much more frequent during the Renaissance and culminated in the 16th and 18th centuries in the Germanic speaking areas. The practice of witchcraft and witch hunt subsided in the late 17th century, and by 18th century the last trials and executions took place in some parts of the medieval Europe. The causes for the decline of witchcraft and witch hunt are many and fairly complex.1 A general examination of the factors that led to the decline of the practice of witchcraft, witch hunt and witch trials include. introductions of new Legislations in the society, new socio-political phenomena and the new way of thinking by people in the growing scientific age.
Western minds are fully confronted by the problem of what the term sorcery or witchcraft means in their culture, they shall assume most of the comfortable attitudes and categories of the informal and formal cultures exhibit. When women and men find themselves in a fearful and helpless state before the awesome forces of the invisible world and cannot explain. they traditionally seek to reach the inaccessible forces beyond the world.
Naturally, it is in order to increase their human powers and their abilities to control their esteemed destinies. It is understandable with varying degree why the holders of such magical powers are the most feared people in the society, and why people’s behaviour towards them must take some specific and peculiar behaviours forms. The ordering and explanation of magic may appear to be so insufficient or inchoate, but at the overall end human preserve the sense of the final clarity and comprehensibility of such phenomena in the society. The witchcraft in the early medieval Europe period was essentially common folk magic or sorcery, developed over a period in the ancient period of 15th to 18th century2.
The decline of witch hunt and witchcraft in Europe was a gradual