Episode 6

Published on:

11th Feb 2020

Anne Gunter the Oxford Demoniac

In 1604 Anne Gunter, under extreme pressure from her father, did "feign and counterfeit herself to be bewitched”.

Join Ash & Sarah as they explore this fascinating and well documented case of Demonic Possession in which a slip of a girl hoodwinked the leading London doctors, the Oxford Dons, and even the King. Explore what motivated Anne's Demonic possession and the socio-cultural nature of medical diagnostics in the early 17th century that spanned the natural world and the demonic.

(also Ash makes fun of Sarah for falling down the stairs ...again)


  • J. Sharpe, The bewitching of Anne Gunter: a horrible and true story of deception, witchcraft, murder and the king (1999)
  • Walker, D. (1981). Unclean Spirits : Possession and Exorcism in France and England in the Late Sixteenth and Early Seventeenth Centuries.
  • Ewen, C. (1938). Witchcraft in the Star Chamber.
  • Sharpe, J. (1997). Instruments of Darkness : Witchcraft in England 1550-1750.
  • Jorden, E. (1603). A Briefe Discourse of a Disease Called the Suffocation of the Mother: Written Uppon Occasion Which Hath Beene of Late Taken Thereby, to Suspect Possession of an Evill Spirit, or Some Such like Supernaturall Power. Wherein Is Declared That Divers Strange Actions and Passions of the Body of Man, Which ... Are Imputed to the Divell, Have Their True Naturall Causes, and Do Accompanie This Disease .

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About the Podcast

Demons and Dames
Demons & Dames is a tongue-in-cheek feminist history podcast. Ashley Mauritzen and Sarah Worley-Hill dive deep into the stories of notorious women who shaped history - by design or simply by being in the right (or wrong) time or place. We examine how they were viewed by their contemporaries, and how and why their stories have been interpreted, shaped and passed down. We also laugh. A lot.

About your hosts

Ashley Mauritzen

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Writer, thinker and former wild child, Ashley has a BA in English Literature from Oxford (apparently - she doesn't remember any of it) and an MA in Fashion Journalism. She does an uncanny Kate Bush impression, wears wigs on nights in, and asked for 10 metres of black velvet ribbon for Christmas when she was seven. By day, she's a commercial semiotician. It's a thing. Former alter egos include Oxford gossip column denizen 'Masher', queer comedy performance artist 'the Dreary Mademoiselle', cerebral burlesque star 'Curious Peach', and everyone's favourite Halloween mashup - 'Adam Antoinette.'

Sarah Worley-Hill

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Bibliophile, historian, and all round goof ball. Sarah has an MA Oxon from Oxford University in Ancient and Modern History, but has also taught maths at a boys' boarding school so considers herself an all-rounder. She would invite Alexander the Great, Queen Teuta of Illyria, and Wu Zetian to her ideal time-machine sponsored dinner party but would definitely need a translator. She loves her Shih Tzu, Calypso, very much and wants to get a French bulldog named Odysseus. She's terribly dyslexic and really really can't spell (or pronounce things). She has a mild tea obsession.