We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Notable Notes |

Witches and Warts

Eric Laurent Maranda, BS1; Victoria M. Lim, BS2; Richa Taneja, BS1; Brian J. Simmons, BS1; Penelope J. Kallis, BS1; Joaquin J. Jimenez, MD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, Miami, Florida
2Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, Nebraska
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(8):877. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2015.4419.
Text Size: A A A
Published online


The appearance of warts in fairy tales, folklores, and superstitions throughout history provides a rich source of theories of the causes of warts as well as a variety of suggested remedies. Stereotypical witches are portrayed with green skin, wrinkled faces, and large warts on their noses. This depiction of “warty witches” has both been commercialized, as well as exploited during the “witch trials” in early modern England.

Folk beliefs dating back hundreds of years provide numerous explanations for the sudden appearance of warts: a child was said to have recently handled a toad, or perhaps he had washed his hands in water that had been used to boil eggs.1 Subsequently, as the appearance of warts became associated with “evil,” the superstitions regarding warts carried heavier consequences. In the 17th century, warts were seen as the “devil’s mark,” a justification given to accuse women of witchcraft during the Salem witchcraft trials. It was believed that the devil would confirm his pact with a witch by giving her a mark of identification. Devil's marks included not only the typical warts but a variety of dermatological lesions, including moles, scars, birthmarks, skin tags, supernumerary nipples, and natural blemishes.2


Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

First Page Preview

View Large
First page PDF preview





Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.