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Death and the PrinceMemorial Preaching Before 1350$
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D. L. d'Avray

Print publication date: 1994

Print ISBN-13: 9780198203964

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198203964.001.0001

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Death and the Afterlife

Death and the Afterlife

Chapter:
(p.159) 4 Death and the Afterlife
Source:
Death and the Prince
Author(s):

D. L. D’ AVRAY

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198203964.003.0005

This chapter casts some light on attitudes to death and to the body-soul relationship. Death and the afterlife are treated in numerous places in medieval theological writings, but it tends to be treated in separate segments rather than as a unity. Memorial sermons are a good place to find the medieval Church's idea of death. This chapter also discusses Beati morti, an extended reflection on death and the afterlife. To persuade people to pray for the souls of the dead was doubtless at least a subsidiary function of memorial sermons, but should not be expected to add a lot to the theological history of purgatory, or even of heaven. They bring together thoughts about political power and thoughts about last things. The death of a prince, or a ceremony to remember him, was a good moment to represent the relation between this world and the next.

Keywords:   death, body-soul relationship, afterlife, memorial sermons, Beati morti, purgatory, heaven, prince

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