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Chapter Summary

This chapter provides some concluding remarks of the book. It is clear from a study of eighteenth-century Swedish witchcraft trials that popular magic remained an integral part of everyday life in Enlightenment Europe. Magic continued to provide people with the discourse and the ritual practice to express socially unacceptable emotions such as envy and anger. In early modern Sweden, the creation of meaning was both an individual and a collective act. Court records show how several parties created meaning by organising their narratives in distinct ways around signs of magic. In early modern Sweden, the body was a vehicle of magic in two ways: passively, because a body could display signs of magic directed against it in the form of certain illnesses, and actively, because body parts and fluids were used to transmit the magical power of the owner.

Keywords: early modern Sweden; eighteenth-century Swedish witchcraft trials; enlightenment Europe; everyday life; fluids; illnesses; ritual practice; signs of magic



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