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Was it in bad taste to dress up as Matthew Hopkins (Witchfinder General) for Halloween?

October 31, 2015

I’ve found my “look”.

conradbrunstrom

witchfindermovie

Well, I didn’t offend too many people after all.  The whole point of Halloween is to offend some orthodoxy or other and on a night when the blasphemous is orthodox, then the guy who points at people and screams at them in the name of a religious orthodoxy becomes himself the transgressive.  A point that I am sure was not lost on all the costumed pre-teens running from house to house in the pouring rain trying to accumulate implausible quantities of decorated sugar.

I believe it was William Warburton, eighteenth-century bishop of Gloucester and one of the most influential and reviled literary figures of his age, who famously observed –

“Orthodoxy is my doxy – heterodoxy is another man’s doxy.”

Words to ponder in the cold light of a November day.

I did scare a few witches last night, mind.  I was escorting my son and his best friend around the…

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