THE Devill of Mascon. OR, A true Relation of the chiefe things which an uncleane Spirit did, and said at Mascon in Burgundy, in the House of Mr Francis Perreand Minister of the Refor­med Church in the same Towne.

Published in French lately by him­selfe: And now made English by one that hath a particular knowledge of the truth of this Story.

OXFORD, Printed by HEN: HALL, Printer to the UNIVERSITY, for RICH: DAVIS, 1658.



THough I suppose you will looke upon my sending you Monsieur Perreauds French booke as a minding you of the promise you were the other day plea­sed to make me of putting it into an English dresse; Yet I hope you will doe me the right to believe that if the subject were not extraordinary, [Page] & if my own pen were not (as you know it is) preingaged to a theme of a very distant nature, I should think it injuri­ous to the publique, and to you, to be accessary to his turning translatour of anothers bookes, that hath already ma­nifested in severall languages, how able he is to write excellent ones of his own.

I must freely confesse to you, that the powerfull inclinations which my course of life & studies, hath given me to diffi­dence & backwardnesse of assent, & the many fictions and superstitions, which (as farre as I have hitherto observed) are wont to blemish the relations where spirits & witches are concerned, would make me very backward to contribute any thing to your publishing, or any mans believing, a story lesse strange then this of Monsieur Perreand.

But the conversation I had with that pious Author during my stay at Gene­va, and the present he was pleased to make me of this Treatise before it was printed, in a place where I had oppor­tunities [Page] to enquire both after the writer, and some passages of the booke, did at length overcome in me (as to this narrative) all my settled in disposed­nesse to believe strange things. And sinc I find that you have received an ac­count both of Monsieur Perreand him­selfe, and severall things relating to his booke from that great scholar and ex­cellent person your Father: I have no re­son to doubt, but that as your skill in the tongues, out of which and into which this treatise is to be translated, will bring it the greatest advantages that it can receive from a translators pen: So the reputation which your and your learned Fathers names will give it, will prove as effectuall as any thing of that nature can be, to make wary readers as much believe even the amazing pas­sages of it, as I hope you doe that great truth of my being in a high degree

Your very affectionate friend and humble servant ROBERT BOYLE.



IN obdedience to the charge which you have beene pleased to lay upon me. I have translated this admirable story, wor­thy to be knowne of all men, and of singular use to convince the Atheists and halfe believers of these [Page] times: Most of which will perswade themselves that there is no such thing in the world as any spirituall, immate­riall, intelligent substance; And some of them will say that which most of them thinke: That if they could have any certainty that there are Devills, they would believe also that there is a God. And Satan to confirme these pretenders to the title of strong wits in their per­nicious unbeliefe, will scarce once in an age discover himselfe in any visible or audible manner, but either to the rudest poore people and the most bestial natures in some remote barren heath, or if he converse with Magicians, whose wit is of a forme somewhat higher, it is onely in secret conference; that the con­fessions of the first sort may be ascribed to the fumes of grosse and terrestriall melancholy, as the onely Devill that frameth meetings and dances of witches in their braines; and that the profession [Page] of the other sort may be imputed to the imposture of wicked men, such as all Magicians are. Likewise when they are told of persons possest or obsest with Devils they ascribe those disorders to sicknesse or juggling. And the truth is that the Devill doth most harme where he is least seene, heard, and suspected. Wherefore I verily beleive that he hath not in many ages done more wrong to his kingdome, then in disclosing himselfe so plainely and sensibly as he did in the passages here related: for thereby he hath left no shift for the unbeliefe of reasoning Atheists. And though this was a witty Devill, yet (in that respect) he was not well read in the Politiques of Hell. Many relations are extant of manifesta­tions of Daemons: the most certaine are in the history of the Gospell, how the De­vils spake alowd out of possessed bodies in the presence of great multitudes, which they did constrained and frigh­ted [Page] by the presence of the Lord of life, their Soveraine and their Judge. But no history either sacred or profane an­tient or moderne relateth such a volunta­ry, publique, continued, and undeniable manifestation of the wicked Spirit as this doeth. For this familiar conversati­on of the Devill was not with Magicians and witches but with godly men: And it was not in a corner, or in a desert, but in the midst of a great city, in a house where there was daily a great resort to heare him speake, and where men of contrary religions met together: whose pronenesse to cast a disgrace upon the dissenting parties did occasion the nar­row examining and the full confirming of the truth thereof, both by the Magi­strate, and by the Diocesan of the place. All these particulars and many more have beene related to my Reverend Father when he was President of a Na­tional Synod in those parts by the man [Page] that was most concerned in them, the Author of this booke, a religious well poised and venerable Divine, who (if he be a live still) is above 80 yeares of age. He writ this relation when it was fresh in his memory, yet did not publish it but 41 yeares after, in the yeare 1653; being compelled to it by the many vari­ous and therefore some false relations of that story which were scattered abroad. With this he set out a Treatise about Demons and witches which he intituled Demonologia, a booke worth reading. His behaviour in all these passages was prudent couragious and godly, for he allwaies resisted the Devill in his seve­rall postures, whether of an Angell of light or of an open enemy of God. He was tempted by the evill Spirit some­times to curiosity, sometimes to covetous­nesse, sometimes to feare, sometimes to jesting and merriment: But the good man was alwaies alike, grave, constant and serious, in rebuking Satan and using [Page] the weapons of righteousnes against him on the right hand and on the left. And he was not disappointed of his trust in God, for in all the time of that persecuti­on God permitted not that stirring De­vill to doe him any harme, or to any be­longing to him, either in their persons or goods, and in the end of a hundred dayes God dispossest the Devill of his usurped hold. My labour in translating these few sheets is so inconsiderable that I would not have put my name to it, but that you thote, Sir, my knowledge of the truth of this hi­story by the relation of my Reverend Father would be some confirmation of the certainty of it. I have it at the second hand, yet from a sure hand. But your selfe, Sir, had from the Authour him­selfe a more immediate information, Which being prefixt before this narra­tive, gives it a free and uncontrolable passe to be admitted into the beliefe of the most severe and judicious readers. [Page] Neither will they have a lesse opinion of the utility then truth of this relati­on, when they see that a person so high in learning, so deepe in judgment, so reall in godlinesse, so exemplary in good workes hath judged it to be of principall use for the convincing of unbelievers, and the confirming of those that are in the faith. Thereby also I shall reape this benefit to my selfe, that the world shall know I am honoured with your commands, and that I delight to approve my selfe

Your most humble and obedient servant, and true honorer PETER Du-MOULIN.

The Devill of Mascon. OR A true relation of the chiefe things which a Demon or wicked Spirit did and said at Mas­con, &c.

THe fourteenth day of Sep­tember in the yeare 1612. I went with one of the El­ders of the Church of Mascon, to the classicall meeting held at the Bo­rough of Couches, and five daies after we returned. Being come home, I found my wife and her mayd in a very great con­scernation, apparent in their face and coun­tenance. And when I enquired of the [Page 2] cause of that great alteration, my wife told me that the night after I went out of towne, she being in bed, her first sleepe was broken by some thing, she knew not what, that drew her curtaines with great noise and violence. That her maid that lay in another bed in the same roome, hearing that, arose in hast and ran to her, to see what it was, but saw nothing; yea that she found the doores and windowes of that roome very close as she had shut them before she went to bed. My wife told me also that the night following she made the mayd lie with her, by reason of that accident. That as soone as they were in bed they felt something that pulled off their blankets: That then the mayd getting out of the bed went from that roome, which is on the backside of the house, to goe to a kitchin which is in the midst of the house, but that she found the doore bolted, not within onely, as she had bolted it herselfe, but without also, which before she could perceive, after she had unbolted the doore and would open it, she felt re­sistance, as if a man had beene on the other side thrusting against her. That the mayd [Page 3] finding herselfe shut up called a youth that lay in another roome on the foreside of the house, who rose to open her the dore, to whom she would say nothing of that disorder lest he should be frighted, but lighting the candle she found in the kitch­in the pewter and brasse throwne about, wherewith the same night and the follow­ing nights the evill Spirit made such a noise as they use to make when they give aA Charivary is a mad kind of se­renada musique of pans and kettles given to old wi­dowes when they marry. charivary, or when they will hive bees.

Upon this relation I will not dissemble that I was seized with some amaze­ment, yet so that I tooke a resolution not to be too credulous at such a strange story, nor too incredulous nei­ther. Severall thoughts came to my mind. Sometimes I considered the frailty and ti­morousnesse of women, Sometimes I thought that it might be the imposture of some knave hidden in the house; Wherefore afore I would goe to bed I carefully sear­ched all the corners of the house and set bolts and barricadoes to all the dores and windowes of the house, stopping even the [Page 4] very cat-holes of the dores, and leaving no­thing that might give way to suspicion of imposture: And after I had prayed with my family I went to bed, while my wife and her mayd sate spinning by the fire, with a lampe upon the table.

Scarce was I in my bed, but I heard a great noise from the kitchin, as the rolling of a billet throwne with great strength. I heard also a knocking against a partition of wainscot in the same kitchin, sometimes as with the point of the finger, sometimes as with the nailes, sometimes as with the fist, and then the blowes did redouble. Many things also were throwne against that wainscot, as plates, trenchers and ladels, and a musique was made with a brasse cul­lender, gingling with some buckles that were at it, and with some other instruments of the kitchen. After I had given attentive ear to that noise, I rose from my bed, and taking my sword, I went into the roome where all that stirre was kept, the maid holding the candle before me, and did search narrowly whether I could find some body hidden, but finding nothing I returned to my bed. The noise beginning againe, I rose againe. [Page 5] and searcht againe, but all in vaine. Then did I beginne to know indeed that all this could not proceed but from a wicked Spirit, and so did I passe the rest of the night, in such an astonishment as any man may i­magine.

The next day very early I gave notice of it to the Elders of the Church. Yea I thought fit to make it knowne to Mr Fran­cis Tornus a Royall Notary and a Procura­tor of Mascon, although he was a Roman Catholique, and very zealous of his reli­gion. What reasons I had for it, I will say afterwards. Since that time both he and all the others to whom I had imparted it did not faile to visit me every evening, ei­ther together or by turnes, as long as that persecution continued, sitting up with me till midnight, and sometimes longer.

The first night that they came, and some other following nights, the wicked spirit kept himselfe from making any noyse or stirre in their presence, as not willing to be knowne to them. But in the end, upon the twentieth of September about nine a clock he made himselfe openly knowne for such as he was; For in the presence of us all, [Page 6] Mr Tornus being one of the company, he began to whistle three or foure times with a very lowd and shrill tone, and presently to frame an articulate and intelligible voyce though somewhat hoarse, which seemed to be about three or foure steps from us, He pronounced these first words singing vingt & deux deniers, that is two and twenty pence, a little tune of five notes which whistling birds are taught to sing. After that, he said and repeated many times this word Minister, Minister. Because that voyce was very terrible to us at the first, I was long before I would answer any thing to that word, but only, Get thee from me Satan, the Lord rebuke thee. But as he was repeating againe very often that word Minister, thinking (belike) thereby to grieve me much, I was provoked to tell him. Yes indeed I am a Minister, a servant of the living God, before whose Majesty thou trem­blest. To which he answered, I say nothing to the contrary. And I replied, I have no need of thy testimony. Yet he continued to say the same, as if he would winne us to a fa­vorable opinion of him.

Then he would offer to transforme him­selfe [Page 7] into an Angell of light, saying of his owne accord and very lowd, the Lords Prayer, the Creed, the morning and evening prayers, and the ten Commandements. It is true that he did alwaies clip and leave out some part of it. He sung also with a lowd and audible voyce part of the Psalm. 81. Then said many things which might be true, as some particular passages belong­ing to my family, as among other things that my father had beene poisoned, naming the man that did it, and why, and specifying the place, and the manner of the poison.

That very night he said that he came from Pais de Vaux, that he had past through the village of Allamogne which is in Ba­illiage de Gez, at the dore of my elder bro­thers house, where he had seene him with Mr Du Pan Minister of Thoiry. That they were ready to goe to supper together at my brothers house. That they were neighbours and deare friends. That he had saluted them, and asked whether they had any thing to command him to deliver to me, because he was going to Mascon. That they had shewed themselves very kinde to him and desired him to remember [Page 8] their love to me, 'yea and had invited him to drinke with them. Thou wicked fiend (said I to the spirit) had they knowne thee they would not have beene so kind to thee.

Some truth there was in his story, for M Du Pan hath since told me and many others, that they remembred very well how at that very time a man of such and such a shape, riding on a very leane horse, that hung downe his head, had spoken with them, and that such discourses past be­tweene them.

The Demon told us also of another bro­ther of mine living in the Vale of the Lake de Joux in the Countrey of Vaux saying that one day when some of our neere kin­red were come to visit him, he to give them some recreation made them goe upon the lake without a boate, upon floating wood tyed together: And that they being farre on the Lake a stormy wind did arise, which constrained them to returne in haste to the shore. Not farre from which all that floa­ting wood was overturned and they all welnigh drowned. Which storme he af­firmed to be of his raising. The relation of that passage being very true, it may be [Page 9] true also that he had raised that wind, as we reade in the booke of Job, that Satan raised a great winde that made the house fall upon the children of that holy man.

Another night the Demon speaking to Claude Repay a bleacher of linnen cloath, one of them that used to come to me at night, asked him whether he remembred not that upon such a day, after he had set in order some pieces of cloath and skeanes of yarne, he found them a while after re­moved out of their place and out of order, and then said that it was his doing. He asked another bleacher called Philibert Guillermin, who was also in the company, whether he remembred not that one day as he was stooping to turne some pieces of cloath and skeanes of yarne, lying upon the grasse, something pulled him behind by the skirts of his doublet, and made him goe back two or three steps, and that the next evening as he lay in his bleaching house, his hat which he had hanged on a naile by his bed-side was flung at his face, and made him start out of his sleepe. That (said he) was of my doing. Both Repay and Guillermin acknowledged that these [Page 10] things had happened to them, but who had a hand in these accidents they knew not before.

That Philibert Guillermins brother, a merchant of Lovan comming from Lyons lodged in his brothers house, and had a mind to visit me the first night, but his bro­ther would not let him. The Demon failed not to tell us of it, saying, I know why Mr Philibert came not to sit up here yester-night. His Brother had a good minde to have bestowed a visit upon us, but Philibert dis­swaded him, because he would not that his brother should heare what noise we keepe in this house.

He spake also of a late quarrell betweene one James Berard a cutler of Mascon and one Samuel du Mont who had so beaten the sayd Berard that he had brought him to deaths dore, which was true and told ma­ny particulars of that quarrell which were not knowne. He told us how at the late fayre of St Lawrence, upon which the citi­zens of Mascon march in armes under their severall colours, one Francis Chickard had beene hurt with a musket shot in the legge, which afterwards being gangrened was cut [Page 11] off; And he named the man that had shot him, and said that he had done it to be re­venged of Chickard, to whom he bore a malice, which might very well be true.

He related a notable story of those that lived before in the house where we dwelt, Philibert Masson and Guillauma Blane his wife, commonly called la Challonoise; that one day, they being fallen out, the wife tooke her time when her husband would goe downe into his shop, and pusht him be­hind with such violence that he fell downe the stares starke dead. And that she pre­sently by another paire of staires went downe and called the prentices and jour­neymen from the shop to their drinking, that they finding their master in the bot­tome of the staires dead, might impute his death to some sudden sicknesse. This secret revealed by the Devill many have believed to be a truth.

Another night the Demon speaking to one of our company told him such private and secret things that the man who affir­med never to have told them to any per­son came to believe that the Devill knew his thoughts, till I had disabused him.

[Page 12] Then he began to mock God and all Religion, and saying Gloria Patri, he skipt over the second person, and upon the third person he made a foule horrible and detestable equivocation. Whereupon I being incensed with a just anger told him: But rather thou wicked and abominable Spirit, shouldest have said Gloria Patri, creatori coeli & terrae, & Filio ejus Jesu Chri­sto, qui destruxit opera Diaboli: That is Glory be to the Father, Creatour of hea­ven and earth, and to his Sonne Jesus Christ, who hath destroyed the workes of the Devill. He then desired us with great earnestnesse that we should send for Mr Du Chassin the Popish Parson of St Stevens Parish, to whom he would con­fesse himselfe, and that he should not faile to bring holy water along with him, for that (sayd he) would send me away pack­ing presently.

We wondered that the dog of the house who used to be very watchfull, and would barke at the least noise, yet never barked at the loud speaking and hideous noise of the Demon: He said of his owne accord without asking, You wonder that the dog [Page 13] barketh not, It is because I made the sign of the Crosse upon his head.

Then being upon a merry pinne, he fell a scoffing and jearing, and among others things sayd that he was one of those that scaled the walls of Geneva, and that the ladder being broken he fell from the wall into the ditch, where he had beene neere to have beene eaten by the frogs, whose croaking he did perfectly imitate. He said that a Jesuite called Father Alexander stood at the foot of the ladder, exhor­ting the Savoyards to goe up boldly, assu­ring them that they should take the city, and winne Paradise: And that when the thirteene that were got up and taken, were led to the gallowes, the women of the towne sayd to the hangman, Courage Ta­basan, thou shalt have mony to drink.

Speaking of Pays de Vaux he said that it was a countrey where they made goodly carbonadoe's of witches, and at that he laughed very loud. He delighted much in jesting with the mayd of the house calling her Bressande (that is a woman of the coun­trey of Bressia) and counterfeited her lan­guage. One night as she went up to the [Page 14] garret to fetch coales he told her, Thou art very bold to passe so neere me, and ma­king a noise as if he had clapt his hands together, he told her, I will put thee in my sack.

He seemed also to delight much in jea­sting with one Michael Repay who came almost every night to us with his father, calling him often Michel Mihell. He told him once that he would bring him to warre with the Marquesse of St Martin who was raising a troope of horse in Bressia to go to Savoy. But Michael Repay an­swered him smiling, should I goe to warres with such a coward as thy selfe, since thou professest that thou didst flie from the scalado of Geneva? To which the De­mon answered. And do you think that I would goe and be hanged with my camrades? I was not such a foole. Continuing to jeast with Michael Repay he put him in mind that the Sunday before going to Church with one Noel Monginot to the village of Ʋrigny, he was saying that the way to catch the Devill was to spread a net for him, and then he told him, Wilt thou now spread thy net to catch me? At the same time he [Page 15] did so lively counterfeit the voyce of Michael Repay's mother that he said laugh­ing to his father, Father, truly he speakes justilike my mother.

Another time he told us in a faint and moaning tone that he had a mind to make his will because he must needs goe present­ly to Chambery where he had a law-suite ready for the triall, and that he feared to dye by the way; wherefore he had the mayd to goe for a Notary naming Mr Tor­nus, father to that Tornus of whom we spake before; Of his family he said many particularities, of which, as also of all the passages of this Demon acted in his pre­sence, the sayd Tornus the sonne, a Royall Notary as his father, hath left a relation, written, and signed with his owne hand, which I have in my keeping for confirmati­on of all that is here related. And it was to have such an authenticall testimonie that I adrest my selfe to him when this vexation came upon me.

In that relation he mentioneth the se­verall legacies which the Demon declared that he would leave, to one this, to another that. One of them to whom he [Page 16] sayd that he would give five hundred pounds, answered him, that he would have none of his money, and wisht that it might perish with him. He named another to be his heire generall, who also answe­red, that he would not accept the inheri­tance, I free thee of it (sayd the Demon) for six pence and a piece of bread.

A while after he counterfeited that he was not the same Spirit that had spoken be­fore, but his servant onely, That he came from waiting upon his Master, who had charged him to keepe his place in his ab­sence, while he was in his journey to Chambery. And when I rebuked him in such words as God put in my mouth, he an­swered with much seeming lenity and re­spect, I beseech you Sir to pardon me, you are mistaken in me, you take me for another. I never was in this house before, I pray Sir what is your name? As he was thus speaking one Simeon Meissonier, that used to resort often to my house upon that occasion, rusht suddenly to the place whence the voyce seemed to come, and having searcht it againe and againe, as others had done before him, and found nothing, he retur­ned [Page 17] to the place where we were all, bring­ing with him severall things from the place where the voyce sounded, among other things a small bottle. At which the De­mon fell a laughing and said to him. I was told long since that thou wert a foole, and I see now that thou art one indeed, to believe that I am in that bottle: I should be a foole my selfe to get into it, for so one might take me with stopping the bottle with his fin­ger.

One night when Abraham Lullier a goldsmith was comming into the house, where he seldome fayled to be at that houre, the Demon said, Goe, open the doore to Lullier who is comming, and at the same time Lullier knockt at the doore. As soone as he was come in, the Demon told him, that he desired to learne the goldsmiths trade of him, and that for his prentiship he would give him fifty Crownes. Then giving him faire words, I love thee well (said he) thou art an honester man then such a man, (naming another goldsmith a man of Geneva) who hath cosened such a Lady of Mascon, who was gone to visit some of her kin­red at Geneva, in the sale of some rings, Jew­ells, [Page 18] and plate. Upon which when Lullier told him I have no need of thy love, I am content with the love of my God, Neither will I take such a prentice as thee. The Demon answered Since thou wilt not teach me the Goldsmiths trade, let Master Philibert teach me to be a Bleacher. Then acting againe the part of a servant he complained that he was poore and ill clad, that he starved for cold, and that his wages were but twelve crownes a yeare. He told us that if we would have him to goe away quickly we should give him something, and that any thing would please him. I told him that he knockt at the wrong doore, and that I would not give him the paring of my nailes. He answered You have then very little charity.

Againe he obstinately affirmed that he was not the same that had bin in the house from the beginning, but his servant, yea that he was not the same that had bin in the house the night before, that then one of his fellow servants was waiting, and that they two were expecting their masters re­turne from his Journey to Chambery whence he should returne within few daies.

[Page 19] Howsoever whether it was the Master Devill that then spake, or one or more of his servants, I have beene informed by worthy witnesses that at the same time there was a Spirit in the house of Monsieur Favre the first president of Chambery, who for his learning in law was one of the il­lustrious men of his age: To him the Spirit spake, and told him, among other things, that he came from Mascon and had past through Bresse, and seene such and such kinsmen of his.

To returne to what was in our house at that time, the Spirit bespoke aloud great preparations of provision, as turkies, partri­ges, hares, and the like for the comming of his Master. Then he sung many prophane and bawdy songs, among others that which is called le filou. He counterfeited the voyce of Juglers and mountebankes, and especi­ally that of huntsmen crying aloud holevrier ho levrier, as hunters use to shoute when they start a hare.

He offered to tempt us by covetousnesse (one of the ordinary temptations of the Devill for which reason he is called Mam­mona.) Divers times he would peremp­torily [Page 20] affirme that there was six thousand crownes hidden in that house, and that if any of us would follow him he would, shew us where the money was hid. But I can say with a good conscience before God and his holy Angels, that I never searcht for it, nor employed others about it, nor suffered any to looke for it, or ever had any will to make benefit by it.

He would try us also by curiosity, say­ing that if we had a mind to see him in any shape of man, woman, lyon, beare, dog, cat, &c. he would give us the sport of it, Which motion we did much abhorre and reject, saying that we were so farre from desiring to see him in any of these shapes, or any other, that we were very desirous, if it might be Gods pleasure, never to heare him; but that we hoped that God would shortly deliver us from all his temp­tations.

In the end he became very angry, first against me because I had told him Goe thou cursed into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devill and his Angels. Whereupon he told me. Thou liest, I am not cursed, I hope yet for salvation by the death and passion of [Page 21] Jesus Christ. This he sayd perhaps to make us believe that he was the soule of a woman deceased a little before in that house, the daughter of a woman whom I had ejected by law out of that house, for there had beene a rumour that when she died she prayed to God that she might returne to the house after her death to vexe us.

He told me in great wrath that he would doe this and that to me. Among other things he told me that when I should be a bed he would come and pull off my blan­kets & pull me out of the bed by the feete. I answered him the same thing that the Roy­all Prophet David said to his enemies, I will lay me downe and sleepe for the Lord maketh me dwell in safety. I told him also that which Jesus Christ said to Pilate, Thou hadst no power on me but what is given thee from above, Whereupon he answered me repeating two or three times these words It is well for thee, It is well for thee.

He was also very angry with one of the company who had called him stinking hee-goate, and gave him many ill words, as these Thou wouldest appeare a good man, but thou [Page 22] art but an hypocrite, thou goest often to Pont­deville, pretending to goe heare Sermons: But when thou goest thou takest thy boxe of bills; & bonds along with thee, to exact thine ar­reares & vse money. Goe, thou wouldst make no conscience to hang a man for twenty shil­lings, as Mr Denis doth; That master Denis was the hangman of Mascon. Then making a noise as if he had clapt his hands together, he sayd agaíne to the same man, Thou mak­est heare the shew of a valiant man, having brought thy sword along with thee this night, but if thou beest so bold as to come hither with­out a light, it shall be seene which of vs two is the most valiant.

Having sayd all these things of the time past, & present, he would also speake of the future. Speaking of those that professe the reformed Religion within the Kingdome of France, he made once this exclamation! O poore Hugonots! you shall haue much to suffer within a few yeares! O what mischiefe is inten­ded against you! & more words to the same purpose.

He sayd of my wife that was with childe, & neare her time, that she should have a daughter, & sayd it two or three times. [Page 23] The case she was in made me feare, that she should get some harme in her childbearin, by a fright, caused by our infernal ghest. Wherefore, I desired her to goe out of the house, & goe to her grandmother the Lady Philiberta de la Moussiere with whom she had bin bred from her infancy, & to lye in at her house. But she did excuse herselfe from it very courageously, saying, that go­ing away would be mistrusting the power & mercy of God: That since it pleased God to visit vs so he might find vs as well in ano­ther house, & that to resist the Devill we must not flee from him. Wherein verily I acknowledged her to be in the right, because wee are often exhorted in the Scripture, to [...]esist, & fight, & wrestle with the Deuill, [...]ut never to flee from him, which would be [...]eilding to him the victory. For he is like he wolfe, or the crocodile, whom if you and against stoutly they will runne away, but if you feare them & runne from them they will run after you.

The Demon sayd one night before vs all, [...]hat without fayle I should dye within three [...]eares, thinking thereby to torment me with a continual apprehension of death, & [Page 24] so make me fall if he could into some me­lancholy, & so into sicknes thereby to have made his words good. But I answered him in the words of St Paul Act 20. None of these things moue me neither count I my life deare vnto my selfe, so that I might finish my course with Joy & the ministery which I have received of the Lord Iesus, to testifie the Gospell of the grace of God.

The Demon having used all these wiles against us was forced to say that he could not prevaile against us, because we did call two much upon the name of God. To shew the efficacy of our prayers, this is an observable truth, that every time that the Devill saw that wee began to kneele to goe to our prayers he left talking, and ma­ny times told us these words, While you are at your prayers I'le goe take a turne in the street. Really, whither he went forth or staid we had a wonderfull silence during our prayer; But no sooner was the pray­er done but he began againe as before, and urged and sollicited us to speake with him▪ And so continued speaking and provoking us to speake till the 25 of November when he spake these last words Ha ha je ne par­leray [Page 25] plus, that is, Alas alas I shall speake no more: From that very time he gave over, and spake no more.

I might adde many other discourses of this Demon, but I confesse that I purposely omit them because they offend either Re­ligion or the State or the good name of some great persons and honorable fami­lies, or because they are foule and disho­nest as proceeding from an uncleane Spi­rit: So much as wee have related is suffi­cient to shew how strange and admirable was this speaking of the Devill.

As his words were strange and admira­ble so were his actions, for besides those which I have related, done in my absence, he did many more of the same kind as to­ssing about very often a great roll of cloath of fifty ells which a friend had left at my house to be sent to Lyons by water. Once he snacht a brasse candlestick out of the maids hand leaving the candle lighted in her hand: He would very often take that mayd's coates and hang them over the bed posts, setting over them a rough hat such as the countriwemen of Bresse use to weare for she was of that countrey.

[Page 26] Sometimes he would hang at those poasts a great starching plate with coards so ty­ed and with so many knots that it was impossible to untie them and yet himselfe would suddenly untie them in a moment. Once I found my bootes so intangled with­in a winding blades that they could not be taken off. And many times he hath so twisted radishes together that the like could not be done unlesse it had bin stu­died with a very long patience and lei­sure.

One afternoone a friend of mine one Mr Connain a Physitian of Mascon, bestow­ed a visit upon me; As I was relating unto him these strange passages we went toge­ther to the chamber where the Demon was most resident: There we found the fea­therbed, blankets, sheets, and boulster, layd all upon the floore. I called the mayd to make the bed, which she did in our presence, but presently we being walking in the same roome, saw the bed undone and tum­bled downe on the floore as it was before.

In the roome over that, where I had my study, I found severall times part of my books laid on the floore, and my houre-glasse [Page 27] unbroken, and no other harme. As I was once sitting in my study the Demon made a noise as it had beene a great voly of shot in the roome above. Sometimes he would be the groome of my stable rubbing my horse, and platting the haire of his tayle, and maine, but he was an unruly groome, for once I found that he had saddled my horse with the crupper before, and the pommel behind.

He was a good while in the house be­fore we could perceive that he resorted to my bedchamber. But one night after all were retired that were come to heare him, my selfe and my family being all a bed, the dores and the windowes of the house being well shut, he came in and began to whistle softly and by intervalles, as if he had bin afraid to awake us: he knockt as if it had bin with his finger upon a trunk neere my bed, as he did many times since. He would throw our shooes about the roome, those of the maid especially, who feeling him once taking one of her shoes laid hold presently on the other, and sayd smiling. This thou shalt not have. Under the table in the same roome he did once [Page 28] imitate the noise of hempdressers that beate the hempe foure together such as we had in our neighbourhood, and keeping the same equall measure.

He made us heare for a long time a har­monie not unpleasant of two little bells tyed tohether which he had taken among some rusty irons in my house. When I heard them first, and knew by their sound that they were mine, I went to the place where I had layd them, but did not find them. Neither did the Demon use these bells in my house onely, but he carried them about to many places both of the towne and countrey. Upon a Lords day morning as I was going to officiate at Ʋ ­rigny, with some elders of my Church we heard the sound of those bells very neere our eares. Mr Lullier, one of our compa­ny, affirmed unto me that he had heard those bells many times at his house. Many others have heard them very neere, but could never see them.

Neither did that Demon play his tricks onely at my house, Mr Lullier hath told me of many of his actions in his house and both shop. As the taking and hiding of [Page 29] his jewels or tooles, and then putting them againe where they were before. While Mr Lullier was telling me of this, he layd a golden ring which he had then in hand upon the table with the toole that he held it with, but presently he found them mi­ssing and in vaine sought them halfe an houre; wherefore he betooke himselfe to other worke; but then he and I saw both the ring and the toole fall, we knew not from whence, upon the table againe.

One night that Lullier had not set up with us as he used to doe, two that came from my house very late stayd by Lulliers shop to give him an account of the De­mons actions and words that night. While they were talking the Demon smote three times very hard upon a shed of boards that was over the shop.

The next night after, Lullier and Repay comming from my house met a woman a­lone at the corner of the streete in a coun­trey habit spinning by Moone-shine. But when they came neere to know what she was, she vanished from their sight.

Leaving now such actions as the Demon did out of my house as things of which [Page 30] I cannot speake with the like certainty as those which I have seene & heard my selfe. I will but adde his last actions at my house, and indeed the most troublesome of all, as they say that the Devill is alwaies more violent in the end then in the beginning, and is then most fierce when he must be gone. He threw stones about my house continually the tenne or twelve last daies from morning to evening, and in great quantity, some of them of two or three pounds weight.

One of those last daies Mr Tornus com­ming to my house about noone, would know whether the Devill was there still, and whistled in severall tones, and each time the Devill whistled to him againe in the same tone. Then the Demon threw a stone at him, which being fallen at his feete without any harme to him, he tooke it up and marked it with a coale, and flung it into the backside of the house which is neere the towne wall and the river of Saone, but the Demon threw it up to him againe, and that it was the same stone he knew it by the marke of the coale: Tornus taking up that stone found it very hot and [Page 31] said he believed it had beene in hell since he had handled it first.

Finally after all these words and actions the Demon went away the 22 day of De­cember; And the next day a very great viper was seene going out of my house, and was taken with long pincers by some naylours our neighbours, who carried it all over the towne crying, Here is the Devill that came out of the Ministers house, and finally left it at one William Clarke's house Apothecary, where it was found to be a true and naturall viper, a serpent rare in that countrey.

All the time that the Demon haunted my house God permitted him not to doe us any harme, neither in our persons nor in our goods. Those bells which he did so tosse and carry about, he hanged at a naile over the chimney of the roome where he was most conversant, the day that he left the house. He had not so much power given him as to teare one lease of my bookes, or to breake one glasse, or to put out the candle, which we kept lighted all the night long. Wherefore I bow my knees, and will as long as I live, [Page 32] unto my gracious God to give him thanks for that great mercy.

This is the plaine and true relation of that Demons words and actions. And Marcelin a Capuchin that preacht at the same time at Mascon hath truly related many of these passages in a booke of his, printed at Grenable against Mr Bouterove, saying, that he had the story from diverse persons, especially from Mr Fovillard Liev­tenant Generall in the Balliage of Mascon, who upon the generall rumour of that strange accident, sent his brother in law Mr Francis Gucrin and Mr Guichard an Advocate to my house, to desire me to come to him, as I did, to tell him the whole matter. Yet (by Marcellins leave) it is not true that which he and other preju­dicate and passionate men doe inferre out of it to disgrace my person and my profe­ssion, namely, that I had communication with evill Spirits. For God beares witnesse to my conscience that I never had commu­nication with those horrible creatures, and know no more of them then what it hath pleased his divine wisdome to let me know by his word & by this domestique experi­ence; [Page 33] and that my chiefe curiosity was to improve the little talent which God hath given me to instruct my selfe and others in the true and solid science of eternall sal­vation, which is to know him the onely true God and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent.

And truly Marcellin and others that have spoken and written of this history to my disadvantage herein, contradict both Mr Fovillard Lievtenant Generall of Mas­con, and the Lord Gaspard Divet then Bi­shop of Mascon, who upon the common report of these passages sent for Mr Tornus to know the truth of them; And for more certainty sent his owne Secretary Mr Chamber to learne the particulars of them from mine owne mouth, to whom I rela­ted all without concealing or disguising any thing. These two Gentlemen Tornus and Chamber have told me since that the Bishop had heard that story with great ad­miration, and had made some records of the same.

If any now enquire of me what may the cause be of this admirable accident (as there is nothing more ordinary or more [Page 34] naturall to every man then to enquire of the causes especially of things extraordina­ry) I will answere that considering the cir­cumstances of time, and place, and persons, which I had then to doe with, many causes seeme to have concurred for it.

First, whereas there are times in which Devils are in a manner unchained and have more liberty to doe their feats, and other times when they are tyed short and restrai­ned from acting, as we learne in the twen­tieth chapter of the Revelation. Truly one may with good reason say that when the Demon made himselfe so bold in my house it was a time when the Devill was, as it were, let loose; for then the world was full of stories of the extraordinary pranks of those wicked Spirits.

This may be justified by the booke written by Mr de l' Anere one of the Kings Counsellours joined in Commission with Mr D' Espagnet President at Tolosa to Judge the witches of the country of Labour, other­wise the Countrey of the Basques neere the Pyrenean mountaines, the title of the booke is A representation of the inconstancy of Demons and wicked Spirits, where such [Page 35] strange and horrible things are repre­sented, as will make the readers haire to stand.

To which joine the horrible story of Lewis Gauffredi, a Priest of Marseilles one of the greatest instruments of the Devill that ever Hell brought forth, who had beene burnt a little before by the order of the Court of Parliament of Aix in Pro­vince.

At the same time a Demon appeared at Lyons in the shape of a fine Gentlewoman to the Lieutenant of the Knight of the watch named la Jacquiere, and to two others of his companions, which three had carnall knowledge of that Demon, and thereby came to a most tragicall and feare­full end. Which story is printed among many other tragicall stories of our time.

At the same time, which was in the year 1612, the like story to that of Lyons was publisht, how in Paris, the first of January of that yeare, a person of quality had cohabitation with a Demon, which to him appeared a beautifull Lady, but the next morning that Lady being visited by Justi­ces [Page 36] and Physitians was found to be the bo­dy of a woman that had beene hanged a few dayes before.

About the same time the prisons of Mascon were filled with a great num­ber of men and women, young and old of the village of Chasselas, and other townes neere it, all indicted of witchcraft, who being condemned at Mascon, appealed to the Court of the Parliament of Paris, and were conducted to Paris by a massinger and some guards. In the way a coach met them, and in it a man that looked like a Judge, who staid, and asked the massinger what prisoners he led, whence they came, and whether they went. The massinger having satisfied him, the man (if one may call him so) eying these prisoners sayd to one of them, calling him by his name, Ho now! art thou one of them? Feare nothing, for neither thou nor any of thy company shall suffer. And his words proved true, For soone after they were all relea­sed.

At the same time a girle of Mascon a­bout 13 or 14 yeares of age daughter to one of the chiefe citizens of the towne, [Page 37] lying with the mayd of the house, percei­ved that she absented her selfe many times in the night, and once asked her whence she came, the maid answered that she came from a place where there was good com­pany, gallant dansing, and all kinds of sports and merriment. The girle taken with this report desired the mayd to bring her to that place. Whereupon the maid anointed her, and made her doe the ordi­nary ceremonies prescribed to witches by the Devill, after which the girle was carri­ed up into the ayre by a Demon, as she re­ported, but seeing herselfe above the con­vent of the Capucin fryers, she was afraid, and called upon God, who did helpe her and caused the Demon to lay her downe in their garden about midnight: The Capucins hearing her lamenting voice came to her helpe, and when she had told them who she was, and what had happened to her, she was secretly conducted by two of them to her Fathers house. This relation I have heard from many persons, affirmed as most certainly true. That girle I have often seen, and I was told that she was ma­ried since.

[Page 38] At the same time the common report was, that a Demon haunted the house of a woman baker of Mascon, in the street de na Tupinerie, in a mans shape, with a red cap. and would looke out of the window by moone light. This many persons have affirmed to me to be very true, the fore­said Abraham Lullier being one of them. I doubt much whether the Demon hath yet left the house notwithstanding all the exercising, and the judiciall course also which was used to eject him.

At the same time a Demon kept a great stirre at St Stevens Church of Mascon, turning over many graves, which being brui­ted about the towne, I saw, as living in that neighbourhood, great part of the people flock thither.

The like happened also in the Church of St Alban neere Mascon, and at the same time.

Againe, at the same time a widowes house at Marigny les Nonnains, not farre from Mascon, was for three moneth haunted by a Demon who did there a great deale of harme, letting out the wine in the cel­lar, and beating untragiously severall per­sons [Page 39] among others a locksmith that came into the house drunk, and gave many ill words and threatnings to that Devill, who presently was even with him, for he tooke one of the andirons, and grievously beat him with it, till he ran away out the house, which he did in all haste. By these relati­ons, and many of the like kinde, which I omit, it is evident that at the time that the Demon was at my house; the Devill was in a manner unchained.

I conceive also that this Demon might be sent to me by some that were incensed against me, for procuring a licence from the King to build a Church for our Refor­med congregation neere the walles of Mascon; for that very day that the Devill began that disorder in my housel, was threatened by one before the civill cor­poration of Mascon, that some evill would overtake me presently, and that man was suspected to be a disciple of one Cesar a knowne Magician, who had lived Mascon a little before.

Many have attributed the comming of that Demon to my maid Bressande, of whom I spake before, for she was suspe­cted to be a witch, borne of parents suspe­cted [Page 40] to be guilty of witchcraft as some doe report: I remember that once she asked of me, whether any of those that had given themselves to the Devill, could find mercy before God. And that ano­ther time, when she saw me afraid lest the Devill should hurt two youths that lay in a roome next to that where he was heard, she told me Feare not, he will doe them no harme. And the truth is that she would jest and be familiar with him. For besides that I said of it before, she would once expostulate with the Demon that he brought her no wood, whereupon he pre­sently threw downe a fagot for her at the staire foot; And whereas upon her offering to leave our service another came to serve us in her place and lay in the same bed with her, the Demon, who never hurt her, would beate that new maid in the bed, and powre water upon her head till he for­ced her to goe away. My suspicion of that Bressande was increased by a relation which she made unto me, one day that I was sick, of a tall black man that had ap­peared unto her the night before by mooneshine, holding a viall in his hand like a Physitian. This and other like [Page 41] things gave me an ill opinion of her, as one that might be a concurrent cause of the comming of that hellish ghest.

To these adde the circumstance of the place; for in the same house a murther had beene committed, if the Demons words and the common report may be credited. As it is not unusuall that houses where some murther or some other foule fact hath beene committed will be haunted by the Devill. Cardan relateth that there is a castle at Parma belonging to the noble family of the Torelli, in one of whose chim­ney's a wicked spirit appeares in the shape of a foule old wife every time that one of the family is to die, ever since that an old woman very rich was slaine in that house by her covetous nephewes, who cut her in pieces and threw her into the jakes.

But the most likely cause is that after I had recovered that house by law, and was put in possession by the power of justice, the woman whom I came to dispossesse was found under a chimney calling upon the Devill and using terrible imprecations a­gainst me and my family, saying that she would be content to be hanged, yea to be damned, and to be in the bottome of hell with [Page 42] all the Devills if she might but be avenged of me and mine. Which words being related to me, I presented a Petition aganst her to the Judge of Mascon Lieutenant Generall Fo­illard who bound the woman to her good behaviour, forbidden her to annoy us ei­ther in our person or our Goods upon great penalties; And I and my family were put under the protection of the King and justice. Of which processe I keepe still with me the judiciall Acts. But without staying any more upon the second causes, I attribute all to the disposition of the first, and lift up mine eyes to the hand that gave the blow, shewing together his strength in my weak­nesse, his mercy in my sinfulnesse, and his wise, moderate, and admirable dealing with me in that he suffered me not to be temp­ted above my strength, but gave me with the temptation away to come out, that I might be able to beare it. Great reason I have to say with the Royall Prophet Da­vid. Our soule is escaped as a bird out of the hand of the fowlers, the snare is broken and we are escaped, Our helpe is in the name of the Lord who maat heaven and earth, To him be glory for it, now and for evermore, Amen.

An Appendix of the Translatour.

THe Author to make his word good that he would publish none of the discourses of the Demon that were offensive to God, or the State, or the credit of some honourable per­sons, hath left out diverse notable stories, some of which he hath related to my Reverend Father, upon whose relation I will adde here two considerable passages. Being to speake of two severall persons for the one I must be true to the intent of the Authour, which is to offend no man, whether I will or no; for I know not the mans name. The name of the other I doe purposely suppresse.

One of them was a grave Divine who hea­ring the Demon speake profanely, rebuked him religiously, and vigorously. To whom the De­mon answered, Minister you are very holy [Page 44] and very serious in this company, you were not so when you were singing such a baudy song in such a Taverne, and then the Demon sung the whole song before the company. The Divine answered much to this purpose, It is true, Sa­tan. I have beene licentious in my young years, but God in his mercy hath given me repentance and pardon; But for thy tart thou art confir­med in sinne, and shalt never have repentance nor pardon. Let every one keepe a watch to his words and actions, for the Devill, who is cal­led the accuser of the brethren, and is so by his trade, keepes a register of that which we say and doe, and will be sure to bring it forth when and where it may doe us most harme.

The other man was an eminent Officer of a Court of Iustice and a Papist, who beeing brought by his curiosity to the Ministers house, to heare that Devill that told future things and secrets both of publique and private businesses, would needs offer to make questions to the Demon about severall things; Where­upon the Minister, who had alwaies very earnestly forbidden and hindered that any should propound questions to the Devill, desi­red the Gentleman to forbeare, and represented [Page 45] to him the sinne and the danger of it; But the Lawyer rejected his counsell with scorne, bidding him to teach his owne flock and let him have the government of himselfe. So having silenced the Minister, he entertained himselfe with the Devill without interruption, questioning him sometimes about one absent friend, sometimes about this or that private businesse, sometimes about newes and State affaires. Ʋpon all which when the Demon had answered him, he spake to him further, much to this purpose. Now Sir, I have told you all that you demanded, I must tell you next that which you demand not, That at this very time while you are making questions to the Devill, such a one (whom he named) is doing your businesses with your wife, and then revealed many secret foule dealings of the Lawyer, which made him appeare a dishonest man. Neither was this all, for in the con­clusion the Devill told him. Now Sir let me Schoole you for being so bold as to questi­on the Devill, you should have taken the Ministers safe counsell. Then upon a sudden the whole company could see the man drawne by the arme into the midst of the roome, where the Devill whiyled him about, and gave [Page 46] him many turnes with great swiftnesse, then touching the ground onely with his toe, and then threw him downe upon the floore with great violence. His friends tooke him up and carried him to his house where he lay sick, and distracted many daies: giving by his ex­ample a lesson to all, that the Devill may be for a while a faire companion to them that will keepe company with him, but will pay them in the end with torment and de­spaire.

Approbation of the Author by the Synod of Burgundy.

WEe Pastors and Elders, of the Reformed Churches of the Pro­vince of Burgundy, assembled in a Synod at Bussy in the Bailliage of Chalons upon Saone, certifie to all, that Mr Perreand Minister of the Holy Gos­pell, hath exercised the charge of the holy Ministery in this Province, for the space of fifty yeares, first in this towne of Bussy, where he was borne, being descended of the most ancient and considerable family of the towne, and since in the Church of Mascon, and afterwards in the Churches of the Bailliage of Gez, where he is now, serving the Church of Thoiry; In all that time, and in all those Churches, doing the [Page] office of a good Pastour and a faithfull ser­vant of God, both in doctrine and life; Of which he had an especiall testimoniall given him by the Church of Mascon in the last Synod of this Province held at Psustile in the yeare 1649, the sayd Church expressing much satisfaction of his godlinesse and singular charity as it ap­peareth by the Acts of the Synod. And the like he hath from the Church of Thoiry by an Act bearing date the 8 of March 1651. To which we adde that although it hath pleased God to bring him into many, and some very ex­traordinary trials, especially while he served the Church of Mascon. yet the same God hath strengthened him with a constant health of his body, and a godly tranquillity of mind, and hath en­dued him with virtue to beare and to overcome all his afflictions. We there­fore beseech the Lord daily to fill his ser­vant with more and more strength in his old age, and that after he hath finish his course he may depart in peace, and obtaine the Crowne of glory reserved [Page] for those that will persevere faithfull unto the end.

  • Francis Reynaud Moderatour.
  • G. Bruys Adjunct.
  • H. Morlet Secretary.

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