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Alvares, Manuel, 1526-1583, et al. / Ethiopia Minor and a geographical account of the Province of Sierra Leone : (c. 1615)

Chapter 24: Maleficium and its forms, and a brief note on the power of evil spirits,   pp. 1-6

Page 5


without falling into error and committing heresy. Although it may seem
to us that they can change their bodies into those of animals, such as
cats, etc., this is not so. It is only that the devil confuses our
imagination and deceives us in what we see. So that witches call enter
houses in order to kill children and do other misdeeds, the devil first
opens the doors and windows for them.
Since I have said enough about the power of the devil to illustrate
the work of this evil spirit, I will conclude our catechism with an
interesting problem, which is, whether the enemy can bring about conception
and birth in any species without a previous sexual act. The problem is
not easy to solve and has given rise to lengthy discussions. The problem
turns on whether or not procreation can result from union with the devil.
See St.Thomas (lib.2,d.8, q.l, art4) and his Quodlibet (6, art.8/6);
Cajetanus                                   Abulens (q.6, cap.6,Generes);
Camperius;  Cantipratenus;   Caesarius; The Master of Coinibra (lib. 1,
Generatio et Corruptio   q.10, art.3);    Tinholao Hererio in Tobiam;
Del Riu (lib.1, q.15)
Resolutio de Ma§ia; Malleus mallefacarum (p.2, q.1, cap.4);     Johannes
Laurentius (Analecta, lib.4, de natura daemonis (sic) ); Luis Molina
(part one of his St Thomas, q.50). These all say that procreation is
possible this way. And they instance many who were engendered by evil
spirits called incubi s Molina; Del Riu (loc.cit. and lib.6, cap.42,
sec.9/3) /f.111/;LVincentium (lib.21, cap.30); Serar of Coimbra;
Johannes Laurentius (Ana, loc.cit.). They say that Martin Luther came
into the world this way:   Genebrarius (lib4);
Johannes Cochlaeus (Analecta loc.cit.). Also Mohamed, the God of the
Turks, and Shaka, the famous idol of the Japanese. The farmer throws seed
on the ground, seed which is not his, and it produces green shoots, ears
of corn and the grain. Why should it be that, if the devil scatters
human seed where he wills, generation will not follow? Especially since he
knows the right time to apply it, and can carry it in a moment from one
place to another, at the exact time that he sees the woman is most ready
to conceive: Cajetanus (ay.11/4, seo.6). Pereira says the same (cap.6,
Genesis) arguing the point with much eruditions And Abulens (q.6,D)
holds that, without having intercourse with the evil spirit, a woman, who
is a virgin and intact, can, during sleep and without knowing it, introduce
into her genital organ something which causes generation, and therefore
without copulation can, as I have already said, bring about conception and
pregnancy.   See Del Riu (lib.1, q.15, Magii Diiouis (sic) ).    See
Annotationes ad Tolet. (lib.5, cap.13, under this and under 'Bestiality').
Curious people can look up in these learned writers what we leave out


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