In early modern Britain and America, the overwhelmingly female practitioners of folk medicine or magic risked being accused of "witchcraft," a potentially capital offense. At the same time, "learned" men could—to a point—delve into astrology and chiromancy in the interests of scientific philosophy. The exhibition traces these tensions alongside the development of post-Enlightenment skepticism that increasingly diluted the diabolic potency of practices such as fortune-telling.

This exhibition is curated by Jennifer Dunlap, Rare Book Cataloger, and Sara Powell, Assistant Curator of Early Books and Manuscripts.

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