Elder Scrolls

On the Interrogation of Witches

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As the Witchhunters of Direfrost have learned through centuries of practice, torture is the only effective method of interrogating a person suspected of practicing witchcraft.

Some have asked whether it is acceptable for the Witchhunter to lead witches to believe their lives will be spared when, even if they confess to their crimes, they will almost certainly be put to death.

It must be answered that opinions vary. Some hold that a witch of very ill repute may be spared, and condemned instead to perpetual imprisonment, in return for sure and convincing testimony against other witches. Others hold that the promise of imprisonment should be kept for a time, and the witch be burned later. A third view is that the Witchhunter may safely promise to spare the witch's life, and later excuse himself from pronouncing the sentence, allowing another to do this in his place.

If these threats and promises do not induce the witch to speak the truth, the Witchhunters must carry out the sentence, and torture the prisoner according to the accepted methods. During this torture, the witch must be questioned on the articles of accusation, beginning with the lighter charges, for the witch will more readily confess the lighter than the heavier.

If a witch confesses under torture, they must afterward be conducted to another place to confirm the confession and certify that it was not due alone to the coercion of the torture. The Witchhunter shall see to it, moreover, that during this interval, guards are constantly with the witches, so the witches will not be visited by Daedric influences that might aid them or tempt them into suicide.


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