Young Poet Pays Tribute Women Persecuted as “Witches”

This 1597 illustration shows Scottish "witches" being tortured before James VI - Image Source: Wikimedia

A YOUNG student poet has made a moving tribute to the 4000 women persecuted for being “witches” by Scotland for an awareness campaign about the injustices.

Lou Pennie, a 21-year old student from Fife, has earned a large Twitter following for her inventive poetry reading videos. As part of the “witches of Scotland” campaign, she has released a moving tribute to the 4000 Scottish women who were tortured or murdered under the “Witchcraft Act” laws.

In the video, Pennie calls on activists to “demand justice” for those who were subjected to often brutal “punishment lacking a crime” between the 16th and 17 centuries in Scotland. The country carried out five times more “witch trials” than any other European country during this time, in a “terrible miscarriage of justice” that campaigners now want Scottish parliament to address.

In a petition launched by the Witches for Justice campaign, activists state that: “As with elsewhere in Europe, the vast majority of those accused, some 85 percent were women. The stripping and pricking of women was common, as was sleep deprivation. Most confessed and that was used as the basis for their conviction. The method of execution was by way of strangulation and then burning at the stake.”

The campaign said that Pennie’s moving poem, written in old Scottish English, “perfectly captures why it is necessary to remember the women and men killed as witches and to galvanise support for the petition, it is a beautiful tribute to those killed as witches.”


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Written by

Oisin Sweeney

Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...

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