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Boy, was I wrong. I am surprised and saddened. I expected his tenure to be superb. Damn.
Less Useful Commentaries (these are mainly here for reference)
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Wendell, Barrett. Cotton Mather. New York: Chelsea House, 1980.
The afflicted girls claimed that the semblance of a defendant, invisible to any but themselves, was tormenting them; this was considered evidence of witchcraft, despite the defendant's denial and profession of strongly held Christian beliefs. On May 31, 1692, Mather wrote to one of the judges, John Richards , a member of his congregation,  [ page needed ] expressing his support of the prosecutions, but cautioning; "do not lay more stress on pure spectral evidence than it will bear … It is very certain that the Devils have sometimes represented the Shapes of persons not only innocent, but also very virtuous. Though I believe that the just God then ordinarily provides a way for the speedy vindication of the persons thus abused." 
Prior to 1692, there had been rumors of witchcraft in villages neighboring Salem Village and other towns. Cotton Mather , a minister of Boston 's North Church (not to be confused with the later Anglican North Church associated with Paul Revere ), was a prolific publisher of pamphlets, including some that expressed his belief in witchcraft . In his book Memorable Providences Relating to Witchcrafts and Possessions (1689), Mather describes his "oracular observations" and how "stupendous witchcraft" had affected the children of Boston mason John Goodwin.