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Cambridge University Press
The Early History of Greed: The Sin of Avarice in Early Medieval Thought and Literature

The Early History of Greed: The Sin of Avarice in Early Medieval Thought and Literature


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In this full-length study of the early history of greed Richard Newhauser challenges the traditional view that avarice only became a dominant sin with the rise of a money economy. He shows that avaritia, the sin of greed for possessions, was dominant in a wide range of theological and literary texts from the first century CE, and that by the early Middle Ages avarice headed the list of vices for authors aiming to convert others from pagan materialism to Christian spirituality.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521385220
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 06/26/2004
Series: Cambridge Studies in Medieval Literature Series , #41
Pages: 264
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.75(d)
Lexile: 1690L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

List of abbreviations; Preface; 1. Alms and ascetes, round stones and masons: avarice in the early church; 2. Ascetic transformations I: monks and the laity in eastern Christendom; 3. Ascetic transformations II: soaring eagles or safety in the herd - from anchoritic to cenobitic monasticism; 4. Ascetic transformations III: the Latin west in the fourth and fifth centuries; 5. Secularizing avarice and cupidity; Epilogue: Future perspectives; Appendix; Notes; Bibliography; Indexes.

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