__NOTOC__ thumb|right|Illustration by Martin van Maële, of a ''[[Witches' Sabbath'', in the 1911 edition of ''La Sorcière'', by [[Jules Michelet]] ]] ''Satanism and Witchcraft'' (originally ''La Sorcière'') is a book by [[Jules Michelet]] on the history of [[witchcraft]] that was published originally in French in 1862.


While the book was originally published in Paris, France in French in 1862 under the title “La Sorcière” the English version entitled “Satanism and Witchcraft” was published in London a year later.The first English translation was published in London in 1863.


According to Michelet, medieval witchcraft was an act of popular rebellion against the oppression of feudalism and the Roman Catholic Church. This rebellion took the form of a secret religion inspired by paganism and fairy beliefs, organized by a woman who became its leader. The participants in the secret religion met regularly at the witches' sabbath and the Black Mass. Michelet's account is openly sympathetic to the sufferings of peasants and women in the Middle Ages. Michelet’s authority on the history of the Middle Ages, and insistence that history should concentrate on ‘the people, and not only its leaders or its institutions’ placed him ahead of his time as a godfather of micro-history Michelet was one of the first few people to attempt to show the sociological explanation of the Witch Trials. He does so similarly to his follower, Margaret Murray, in interpreting the source material very literally According to Michelet, in a note added to the end of the book:


The first part of the book is an imaginative reconstruction of the experience of a series of witches who led the religion from its original form of social protest into decadence. The second part is a series of episodes in the European witch trials. Today the book is regarded as being largely inaccurate, but still notable for being one of the first sympathetic histories of witchcraft, and as such it may have had an indirect influence on Wicca. He uses a very popular style of writing that makes the book all the more bearable to read. Had he done it in a more academic style it would perhaps be more widely regarded as a reputable study. The book and the stories told within are told with the energy and style that one might use when telling stories around a campfire as opposed to the air one might use in a lecture.


In the early 1970s, ''La Sorcière'' became the basis for Alain Robbe-Grillet's film ''Glissements progressifs du plaisir'' (starring Jean-Louis Trintignant) and the anime film ''Kanashimi no Belladonna'', by Mushi Production.

See also

* ''Aradia, or the Gospel of the Witches'' * Dianic Wicca * Margaret Murray


External links

The full French text (various formats)

The full French text, with internal links and pictures (MS Word format)

Full text of "La Sorcière: The Witch in the Middle Ages" (1863 English translation)

Same text (online book format)

Further reading

* English translation: ''Satanism and Witchcraft: A Study in Medieval Superstition''. Transl. A. R. Allinson. Lyle Stuart/Citadel Press, 1939. * ''La Sorcière de Jules Michelet: l'envers de l'histoire'', ed. Paule Petitier. Paris, Champion, 2004. {{DEFAULTSORT:Satanism And Witchcraft Category:1862 non-fiction books Category:19th-century history books Category:History books about the Middle Ages Category:History books about witchcraft Category:Occult books Category:European witchcraft Category:Satanism Category:Non-fiction books adapted into films