Although her fictional descendant is featured in my latest novel, Magick: Secrets, Spells and Tales, Agnes was in fact, a very real figure in Scottish history.
Agnes Sampson was a midwife and healer in a village in Scotland at the end of the 16th century. On Halloween night 1590, she attended a witches' Sabbath hosted by Satan, and summoned a great storm over the North Sea, meant to sink the ship of Queen Anne, wife of King James VI of England, who was sailing in toward Scotland. Things didn't exactly go as planned, but the queen was indeed forced to abandon the trip. Later, the king himself was sailing the North Sea when a violent storm broke out, summoned by the same Agnes Sampson. Or at least, that's what they said. The midwife is believed to have started the first witch hunt craze in history. During the same year, she was burnt at the stake as the first victim of the North Berwick Witch Trials, which saw 70 executions.
To find out how the story of Agnes Sampson inspired me in my own writings, go here to discover all books by Liz Rau.