The Mark of the Beast: The Medieval Bestiary in Art, Life and Literature

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Overview

The medieval bestiary was a contribution to didactic religious literature, addressing concerns central to all walks of Christian and secular life. These essays analyze the bestiary from both literary and art historical perspectives, exploring issues including kinship, romance, sex, death, and the afterlife.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Nine essays reveal accumulated layers of meaning developed in the bestiary stories and attached to the animals themselves, and the numerous ambiguities and contradictions that demonstrate the flexibility and power of the genre. Concentrating on art history and literary analysis, they connect specific artistic and literary features of the bestiaries to broader issues in medieval art, life, and literature. They cover social realities, moral lessons, classical inheritances, and reading beasts. The illustrations are monochrome. Only beasts are indexed. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Debra Hassig Ph.D. is a Reader at the Institute of Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Abbreviations
Figures A-K
Pt. 1 Social Realities 1
The Lion, Bloodline, and Kingship 3
Misericord Owls and Medieval Anti-semitism 23
Pt. 2 Moral Lessons 51
Bestiary Lessons on Pride and Lust 53
Sex in the Bestiaries 71
The Phoenix and the Resurrection 99
Pt. 3 Classical Inheritances 117
Did Imaginary Animals Exist? 119
Classical Ideology in the Medieval Bestiary 141
Pt. 4 Reading Beasts 161
Taboos and the Holy in Bodley 764 163
Silence's Beasts 185
App List of Bestiary and Physiologus Manuscripts 211
Contributors 215
Index of Creatures 217
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