The mother of Johannes Kepler and three other surviving children. Of peasant stock. her marriage to Heinrich Keppler should have been a good match, but he frequently left to go soldiering, and she raised her children mostly alone and with some help from her own family. In 1615, when she was a widow in her seventies, a neighbor, Ursula Reingold accused her of witchcraft. Katharina sued for defamation, but the result was that she was tried for witchcraft. The legal proceedings continued until 1621. She would be imprisoned under harsh conditions for the last fourteen months of this period. Johannes wrote a detailed defense, arguing that the evidence consisted mainly of rumors and evidence from under-age witnesses. Katharina was shown the instruments of torture in an effort to make her confess, but the evidence did not justify actual torture and she was released. She died approximately six months later.