The Birth of Purgatory   -     By: Jacques LeGoff
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The Birth of Purgatory

University of Chicago Press / 1981 / Paperback

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Product Description

In this book, Jacques Le Goff, the brilliant medievalist and renowned Annales historian, is concerned not with theological discussion but with the growth of an idea, with the relation between belief and society, with mental structures, and with the historical role of the imagination. Le Goff argues that the doctrine of Purgatory did not appear in the Latin theology of the West before the late twelfth century, that the word purgatorium did not exist until then. He shows that the growth of a belief in an intermediate place between Heaven and Hell was closely bound up with profound changes in the social and intellectual reality of the Middle Ages. Throughout, Le Goff makes use of a wealth of archival material, much of which he has translated for the first time, inviting readers to examine evidence from the writings of great, obscure, or anonymous theologians.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 430
Vendor: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: 1981
Dimensions: 6 X 9 (inches)
ISBN: 0226470830
ISBN-13: 9780226470832

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Publisher's Description

In "The Birth of Purgatory," Jacques Le Goff, the brilliant medievalist and renowned "Annales" historian, is concerned not with theological discussion but with the growth of an idea, with the relation between belief and society, with mental structures, and with the historical role of the imagination. Le Goff argues that the doctrine of Purgatory did not appear in the Latin theology of the West before the late twelfth century, that the word "purgatorium" did not exist until then. He shows that the growth of a belief in an intermediate place between Heaven and Hell was closely bound up with profound changes in the social and intellectual reality of the Middle Ages. Throughout, Le Goff makes use of a wealth of archival material, much of which he has translated for the first time, inviting readers to examine evidence from the writings of great, obscure, or anonymous theologians.

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