Important Persons in the Salem Court Records

People and TopicsBiographical Data

Samuel Parris

One of the most notorious personalities in Salem, the Rev. Samuel Parris represents to some the danger of religious power when wielded by self-centered and deceptive individuals. To others, his antipathy towards his opponents in Salem Village was simply a small factor in the larger picture of the Salem witch trials. In either case, the persecution of "witches" began in his household, and through that point extended deeply into the American psyche. One cannot help but question the amount of responsibility that Parris, who began preaching about the work of the Devil in his parish holds for the events of 1692.

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