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Death, Religion, and the Family in England,
                        1480–1750$
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Ralph Houlbrooke

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198208761

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198208761.001.0001

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Grief and Mourning

Grief and Mourning

Chapter:
(p.220) 8 Grief and Mourning
Source:
Death, Religion, and the Family in England, 1480–1750
Author(s):

Ralph Houlbrooke

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198208761.003.0009

This chapter discusses grief and mourning between the 15th and 18th centuries. Grief was recognized as a natural but potentially morbid, even fatal, reaction to the deaths of friends and loved ones. Opinions concerning it ranged from stern disapproval to qualified acceptance. Christian teaching called for submission to God's will and in its Catholic form encouraged the sublimation of grief in positive action on behalf of the souls of the dead. Grief was manifested by the wearing of appropriate dress, but this was only one of the functions of such garb. It was also a means of showing solidarity with bereaved kinsfolk and respect for senior relatives and public figures for whom one might feel little inward sorrow.

Keywords:   grieving, mourning, death, bereavement

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