Witches and Halloween
Witches were perceived as evil beings by early Christians inspiring the iconic Halloween figure.
Short summary of the Roman Catholic Church Inquisition
written by The Very Rev. George William Kitchin, D.D.; Dean of Durham and Warden of the University from 1894; Censor and Tutor of Christ College, Oxford, 1861; Lecturer in History, 1882; Dean of Winchester, 1883; author of an edition of the Novum Organum of Bacon, a translation of Brachet's Historical Grammar of the French Language, History of France, etc.
1184 Synod of Verona under Pope Lucius III...Roman Catholic Pope 1181-1185 witchcraft amended to include heretics
Burning at the Stake
Catholics and Protestants had martyrs but execution by burning at the stake was a punishment normally inflicted for heresy and witchcraft. The method was first approved for use against heretics by the Synod of Verona in 1184 and subsequently confirmed by the Lateran Council of 1215 and the Synod of Toulouse in 1229. In 1401 King Henry IV authorised the first actual statute in English law against heresy - De Heretico Comburendo, (Henry IV,c.15) which gave the clergy power to arrest and try those suspected of heresy. The Act condemned "divers false and perverse people of a new sect; they make unlawful conventicles, they hold and exercise schools, and make and write books." By this Act, the lives of the subjects were put under the control of the bishops, who got power to fine and imprison all heretics, and all possessors of heretical books, while obstinate and lapsed heretics were handed over to the sheriff, to be burned at once, ‘in a high place before the people, that they might take salutary warning.’