Agnes Nutter

Do Notte Buye Betamacks
– Agnes Nutter (178)

Agnes Nutter was a prophet who lived in England during the seventeenth century. She was the author of two volumes of predictions. ‘The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch’ was printed in 1655. In spite of the popularity of the topic at that time, it was the first book printed in England to be remaindered (36). As a consequence, the sequel, ‘Further Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter Concerning the Worlde that is To Com: Ye Saga Continued’, never saw print and existed only as a manuscript.

‘The Nice and Accurate Prophecies’ was unique in that it contained only correct predictions, and accurately described the events leading to the Apocalypse (36). However, since Agnes recorded only those events which would affect her descendants, and because her descriptions were rather oblique, the prophecies were of limited value (186).

Agnes used her knowledge of the future to help prevent illness and to cure the sick (177). This brought her to the attention of the Witchfinder Army. She was already waiting for the crowd that arrived one night at her cottage, and cooperated when they took her to the village green to be burned at the stake. Less than a minute after the pyre was lit, the entire village was destroyed by an explosion. A note found later at her cottage revealed that Agnes had concealed eighty pounds of gunpowder and forty pounds of roofing nails in her petticoats (165).

After her death, Agnes’s copy of ‘The Nice and Accurate Prophecies’ was sent to her son. The copy of the manuscript was delivered to a legal clerk, who passed it along to his successors until the time Agnes appointed it should be given to Anathema Device, one of her descendents (332).

The last known copy of ‘The Nice and Accurate Prophecies’ vanished along with the manuscript of ‘Ye Saga Continued’ in the late twentieth century (334).

Edition referenced in this article: UK Gollancz hardcover (2007)
Written by Lynette