Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Death and TensesPosthumous Presence in Early Modern France$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Neil Kenny

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198754039

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198754039.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 11 December 2018



(p.116) 9 Epitaphs
Death and Tenses

Neil Kenny

Oxford University Press

This section examines the use of tenses to refer to the dead in the abundantly practised genre of the epitaph, mainly in verse. Although most of the epitaphs considered were written to be read on the page rather than on a tombstone, it is argued that they still formed part of the ritualized cycle of event and replay. In other words, the notion of ritual is extended to reading. Tenses in epitaphs communicated a subtly gradated spectrum of degrees of posthumous presence, ranging from boldly asserted presence or absence—at the two extremes—to many in-between states. The ‘feel’ of presence or absence communicated by them provided important nuances, supplements, or correctives to the semantic surfaces of epitaphs. Tense-use in epitaphs often problematized posthumous presence, whether by denying or attenuating it or else by foregrounding the cognitive effort needed to perceive it.

Keywords:   Pierre Davity, deixis, epitaphs, Clément Marot, posthumous presence, Étienne Tabourot des Accords, tense

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .