About Alice Kyteler
In 1324, Richard Ledrede, bishop of Ossory, declared that his diocese was a hotbed of devil worshippers. The central figure in this affair was Alice Kyteler, a wealthy Kilkenny woman who stood accused of witchcraft by her stepchildren.
Alice Kyteler was a wealthy Irish moneylender whose husbands had the nasty habit of dying too soon and leaving all their fortune to her. When her fourth husband came down with a strange sickness, his children, Alice’s step children, began to suspect something fishy. Alice was accused of having poisoned her husbands, and of having sacrificed animals to Satan. Her rituals were curious to begin with, using hair from the buttocks and clothes from unbaptized children. Nevertheless, it seems strange items like mysterious powders and spells were found in her home. In 1324, she was tried for witchcraft. She was the first witch to ever be accused on Irish soil. She was sentenced to death, but she miraculously disappeared the night before the execution, never to be seen again.