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Descendants of convicted witches have lately pushed for exonerations in a number of states and in Scotland. Last July, Virginia's governor officially cleared the name of the Witch of Pungo, otherwise known as Grace Sherwood, a midwife and mother of three who was accused of being a witch and was forced to undergo a trial by water in 1706. The rules of her trial: that she be thrown into the Lynnhaven River with her thumbs tied to her toes. If she sank, she was innocent. If she floated, she was a witch. She floated, and was then imprisoned for nearly eight years. Her real crimes, her descendants argue, may have been that she was a beautiful property owner who wore pants.

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