The Survey of Scottish Witchcraft


By Julian Goodare, Lauren Martin, Joyce Miller and Louise Yeoman, January 2003

The Survey of Scottish Witchcraft logo

Welcome to the Survey of Scottish Witchcraft. This is an electronic resource for the history of witchcraft and witch-hunting in Scotland. It is in two parts: an interactive database, and supporting web pages.

The database contains all people known to have been accused of witchcraft in early modern Scotland—nearly 4,000 of them. There is information on where and when they were accused, how they were tried, what their fate was, and on a wide range of themes relating to social and cultural history. You can use the database to conduct all sorts of searches. For instance, you can find all known cases involving neighbourhood quarrels, or demonic possession, or fairies. You can find all the male or female witches. You can create graphs or maps showing how witchcraft cases were distributed; this is important because prosecutions tended to come in short bursts in particular localities.

There is also supporting material. An 'Introduction to Scottish witchcraft' explains some of the findings from the database and puts them in context. The 'Further Reading' section is also important; the database won't tell you everything on its own. However, it will tell you some things that you could find out in no other way. We hope you find it a useful tool. All this should help you think about the history of witchcraft and what it means to us today.