Elizabeth Clarke

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Elizabeth Clarke (c. 1565–1645) was the first woman persecuted by the Witchfinder General, Matthew Hopkins in 1645 in Essex, England. She was accused of witchcraft by local tailor John Rivet. Local magistrates appointed John Stearne and Hopkins to investigate. This led to further accusations and the deaths of up to 200 people. She was a woman over 80 with only one leg, who confessed after being deprived of sleep for many nights. She was then hanged.

Rebecca West, the daughter of Anne West (another of the accused), gave evidence against her in return for a reprieve.


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