Images of Purgatory

Studies in Religious Imagination and Innovation
(The Czech Lands, 1600-1800)

Tomáš Malý, Pavel Suchánek
translated by Stuart Roberts
Collana: In Between. Images, Words and Objects, 3
Pubblicazione: Dicembre 2021
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Edizione cartacea
pp. 260, 15,5x23 cm, bross.
ISBN: 9788833137421
€ 36,00 -5% € 34,20
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Edizione digitale
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ISBN: 9788833139647
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On the example of the Czech lands, the book discusses the transformation of the representation of Purgatory in the period between the late Reformation debates at the end of the sixteenth century and partial rejection of Purgatory by the so-called reform Catholicism of the late eighteenth century. The authors, moving permanently in-between history and art history, gradually analyse theology, iconography, practice, and reception of Purgatory. They address the questions of space and time in Purgatory, of emotions and the early modern "affects", treatment of images in religious practice, circulation and diffusion of meditative texts and images, or the problem of revenant souls.

The book offers a comprehensive consideration of the development of a fascinating cultural phenomenon in a crucial period of significant changes in people’s thoughts and behaviour.

  • Foreword
  • Introduction
    • 1. The region studied
    • 2. Image and imagery: Methodological remarks
  • 1. The Doctrine
    • 1. Debates on Purgatory in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
    • 2. The Czech Lands: Regional specifics and components of the doctrine
  • 2. The Images
    • 1. The birth of Baroque Purgatory
    • 2. The iconography
    • 3. Space and time in the images
    • 4. Representing emotions
    • 5. Rhetoric of the undepictable
  • 3. The Practice
    • 1. Reception and translation of the meditative literature
    • 2. Meditations, imagination and sensory perception of images
    • 3. Image in religious practice: The example of Karel Škréta’s “Crucifixion”
    • 4. Motivation for charity
  • 4. Popular Culture
    • 1. Unofficial aspects of Purgatory
    • 2. A revenant exemplum: Exelius the baker
    • 3. The “Baroque” popularity of apparitions
    • 4. Revenants and the issue of communication
    • 5. Diffusion of cultures – bricolage
    • 6. The twilight of the revenants in the eighteenth century
  • Conclusions
  • List of Requiem Chapels, Paintings and Sculptures
  • Bibliography
  • Photographic Credits
  • Index of Names
  • Index of Places

Cover: Ignaz Stern, Nicholas of Tolentino as a patron saint of souls in Purgatory, 1739. Prague, the Augustinian church of St Catherine in New Town of Prague (Institute of Art History, Czech Academy of Sciences – Martin Mádl).

Tomáš Malý

Tomáš Malý is an associate professor of History at Masaryk University, Brno. Both in pedagogical and research work, he addresses the religious and cultural history of early modern Central Europe. He has published books and studies on Baroque piety, religious imagination, and secularization.

Pavel Suchánek

Pavel Suchánek is an associate professor of Art History at Masaryk University, Brno. His area of expertise is the early modern visual culture in Central Europe. He has published books and articles on Baroque art and culture, religious imagination, artistic patronage, the visual culture of the Enlightenment, and other topics.

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