Karen M Edwards
Mapping of Scottish Witches
Although this is after the fact of writing Joy to My Love, I thought it interesting enough to add this to my site. A wikimedian* in residence at the University of Edinburgh created this map. Check it out here Map of Scottish Witches You can read more about how the researcher went about doing this here.
You can find more information about Janet (Jean) Cornfut under Leuchars (near St Andrews) where she came from though she was killed or rather murdered in Pittenweem. If you click on "more information" it gives you specifics about the witch from their database. This is what was said about Janet.
"One of several women accused of tormenting a local lad, Patrick Morton. This is another possession case. A group of seven people were charged with causing the tormenting of Patrick Morton, the sixteen year old son of a smith in Pittenweem. The town officials cited the precedent of 'Bargarran's daughter in the west' when applying for a commission for trial. The Privy Council appointed Her Majesty's Advocate, Sir James Stewart to prosecute the cases and the Privy Council said they would pay for it from the treasury. In 1705 she was eventually killed by an angry mob of men. They beat her and she was found nearly dead in the Sea Mark, then the bailies tried to save her. She was taken again and crushed to death under a door covered with stones. The Privy Council ordered all those involved brought to the tolbooth in Edinburgh and the magistrates charged with failure to keep the peace."
It also lists the men who were charged with "failure to keep the peace," a petty misdemeanor compared to murder. I looked at the narrative about Bargarran's daughter in a Google book. Chilling stuff. Talk about fake news. It was deadly to people in those days (I suppose the immigrants to the USA are experiencing such superstitions now) I used Janet's story in Joy to My Love to show why Effie was feared by certain people in the village even though in 1813 such desperate measures were not taken up against so-called witches.
*I love this. A new word for me.