Initially brand new Scotts stayed in Braintree, but after transferred to Cambridge where they’d four youngsters between 1644 and 1650

Research out-of Essex County records shows that the newest Scots were not wealthy and not starred in people ranks recommending importance otherwise prominence

Margaret Scott’s roots was rare. Created Margaret Stevenson within the The united kingdomt about the season 1615, she earliest appeared in the new checklist courses inside the 1642, when she in Scott. Brand new Scott household members found its way to Rowley inside 1651 where Margaret gave birth to three extra people. Of all college students, just about three lived so you can adulthood. Nevertheless, once of one’s witchcraft trials, brand new seventy-seven year-old Margaret Scott had as many as eleven grandchildren.2

Probably the most hazardous element of being a great widow is the lack out-of a husband for judge service and determine

It is not easy to help you pinpoint the latest reputation of the Scott family members among customers away from Rowley. Benjamin Scott themselves try never ever assigned a top-condition name such as for example Mister or even the lower position title Goodman. New Scotts lacked the money buying their unique residential property. Alternatively in the 1664 the town contributed home so you can Benjamin Scott.step three Within the inside the Scott is found guilty of your own offense regarding theft, which he had been “fined and you can admonished.” However, half a year later on the guy grabbed the newest Freeman’s Oath, indicating he had been one another a great householder and you can a chapel representative, simply speaking, an enthusiastic upstanding individual.4 Benjamin Scott passed away inside the 1671 leaving a house really worth merely 67 lbs and 17 shillings, not much from the criteria of that time. Yet not, Margaret must go on that it property for another twenty-one to decades by enough time of one’s Salem samples, must have become less than perfect.5

At first glance, Margaret Scott appears to have resided a keen uneventful lives. not, specific regions of this lady reputation produced their a highly almost certainly candidate due to the fact an effective witch think. One aspect is actually the new large baby mortality rate one of their pupils. Feamales in The fresh The united kingdomt who’d problems increasing pupils have been really prone to witchcraft charge. Indeed, merely seven out of the 62 implicated women witches during the Brand new The united kingdomt ahead of 1692 got numerous youngsters.six

Out-of Margaret’s seven children, merely three managed to make it so you’re able to adulthood. This does not think people miscarriages and other problems that Scott could have got. Also, just one out of the woman around three youngsters born when you look at the Rowley stayed to help you adulthood. The newest citizens off Rowley would have been completely aware regarding their highest baby mortality rate.7

Various other basis from the Margaret Scott’s reputation you to generated their susceptible to allegations try the woman condition just like the a good widow to own twenty-you to years. Are an excellent widow didn’t by itself present a woman in order to suspicion.8 However, Scott suffered from the economic and you may personal results of being an effective widow to own a protracted period. And, Scott, 56 at the time of the lady partner’s demise, is actually forced to real time off her husband’s quick property for twenty-that years. Commonly widows who were over fifty rather than wealthy, were unable to locate a unique partner and thus was basically smaller to impoverishment and you will begging. By asking, Margaret would introduce by herself to witchcraft suspicions predicated on what historian Robin Briggs phone calls the new “refusal guilt problem”. Which experience occurred whenever a good beggar’s demands was basically rejected causing feelings of guilt and you may violence with the refuser’s part. The fresh new refuser projected it hostility towards the begger and you will became suspicious out-of her.nine

A number of the depositions up against Scott did cover misfortunes taking place in order to people that got denied the girl an assistance or a beneficial. Maybe Scott in reality made use of the woman character for favors, which could be efficient. In the event the individuals believed that Scott are an effective witch, they may provides eagerly considering her what she requested regarding mingle2 fear of retaliation. Although not, if someone else declined Scott after which decrease towards the bad items, witchcraft suspicions and allegations was nearly a certainty.10