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By Robert Lima

The evil that males do has been chronicled for millions of years at the eu level, and maybe nowhere else is human worry of our personal evil extra certain than in its personifications in theater.

In phases of Evil, Robert Lima explores the sociohistorical implications of Christian and pagan representations of evil and the theatrical creativity that occultism has engendered. via analyzing examples of alchemy, astronomy, demonology, exorcism, fairies, vampires, witchcraft, hauntings, and voodoo in favourite performs, levels of Evil explores American and ecu perceptions of occultism from medieval occasions to the trendy age.

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Extra info for Stages of Evil: Occultism in Western Theater and Drama

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Eccl. 484, fols. 1, 9r, 59r, 78r. The sketcher’s hand gives ill-defined drawings of hell pits in fols. 1v, 9r, 14v, and 66r. The mid-ninthcentury Utrecht Psalter resided in England for many centuries, serving as a model 40 / STAGES OF EVIL for Anglo-Saxon and later tracts, as in the case of the twelfth-century Eadwine Psalter (Cambridge, Trinity College R. 1). 15. British Museum, MS Stowe 944, fols. 6v–7r. Part of the manuscript is attributed to the monk Aelsinus. To the right of the lower register is the image of the Mouth of Hell.

An image that had its origin in the ancient belief systems of Near and Far Eastern peoples was taken up by medieval Christianity in its religious tracts, church decor, and pageant wagons with unparalleled religious fervor. NOTES I am indebted to the late Charles Mann, curator of Special Collections, Pattee Library, Pennsylvania State University, Ms. Sandy Stelts, and the rest of the staff for providing me with numerous originals and facsimiles of medieval texts to consult for chapter 1 of this study, as listed below: (1) Apocalisse, with extensive wood engravings, analysis by Sergio Samek Ludovici, Latin text from the critical Oxford ed.

17 The texts that were to consolidate the motif and promulgate it throughout Europe began to appear once the dreaded millennium had passed without incident and doomsayers began to make verbal and pictorial reassessments of the Last Judgment and other eschatological concepts. The date of the projected catastrophe too was readjusted with frequency, giving vent to ongoing concern over the end of the universe and the punishment awaiting the condemned. The motif seems to have taken root in France in the twelfth century, as attested by the powerful relief carved on the tympanum of the abbey church of Sainte Foy at Conques-en-Rouergue, featuring the open maw of Leviathan surging through the gate of hell (see fig.

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