The subject of witchcraft erupted in Europe around the mid 1400s. With the start of the reformation years(which is around when Wolves Among Us takes place) the outbreak of witchcraft hysteria with mass executions began to appear and the killing rate for witches increased considerably. Authorities in Geneva, Switzerland burned 500 accused witches at the stake in 1515. In Italy nine years later, a vast number of witchcraft charges led to as many as 1,000 executions.
Over the 160 years from 1500 to 1660, Europe saw between 50,000 and 80,000 suspected witches executed. About 80% of those killed were women. execution rates varied greatly by country, from a high of about 26,000 in Germany to about 10,000 in France, 1,000 in England, and only 4 in Ireland. The lower death tolls in England and Ireland owed in part to better procedural safeguards in those countries for defendants.
I knew that the witch-hunts in the 1500s were vast and many people lost their lives innocently, but looking at the statistics is staggering. Wow. And if you pick up Wolves Among Us, you'll get a detailed story of one town in Germany that had to deal with witch-hunts and unjust executions. I encourage you to get a copy soon!