Witchery With Wordle

Wordle: Hopkins' The Discoverie of Witches (1647) In Twilight and History, I showed how Carlisle Cullen’s story could be seen as a rough parallel to the career of Matthew Hopkins. His witch-hunting career was carried out with an eye toward publicity and profit, hence the publication of this book, The Discovery of Witches to stir up more interest in Hopkin’s pricey services. Where Hopkins sought the limelight, Cullen didn’t. Where Hopkins revelled in hunting down witches, Cullen did not. All told, Carlisle is definitely a hero for the modern age; Hopkins is very much out of fashion.

I like to look at the Wordle I created from that treatise, if only to see how very revealing the language is. (If you’re wondering what the prominent “Quer” and “Answ” or “Ans” mean, they’re short for Query and Answer. Parts of the book are structured as question and answer with the expert on witch hunting, Matthew Hopkins.) The words that it highlights revolve around the presumed practices of witchcraft as well as Hopkins’ specialty of finding those witches out. It’s not a bad proxy for the book, itself, in that respect.

I have to say that I far prefer Deborah Harkness’s A Discovery of Witches both for readability and subject matter.


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