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Christian Demonology and Popular

Edied by Gabor Gabor Klaniczay and Eva Pocs

Publication Year: 2006

The authors—recognized historians, ethnologists, folklorists coming from four continents—present the latest research findings on the relationship, coexistence and conflicts of popular belief systems, Judeo-Christian mythology and demonology in medieval and modern Europe. The present volume focuses on the divergence between Western and Eastern evolution, on the different relationship of learned demonology to popular belief systems in the two parts of Europe. It discusses the conflict of saints, healers, seers, shamans with the representatives of evil; the special function of escorting, protecting, possessing, harming and healing spirits; the role of the dead, the ghosts, of pre-Christian, Jewish and Christian spirit-world, the antagonism of the devil and the saint.

Published by: Central European University Press

Cover

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pp. 1-3

Title page

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p. 4-4

Copyright page

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p. 5-5

Table of Contents

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pp. v-vi

Contents of the first and the third volumes

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pp. vii-viii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-9

The most important ordering principle of our first volume1 was that of the communication with the supernatural: the relations of the human world with the domains of the spirits, a set of relationships which constituted an important part of the mental universe of medieval and early

Part I. Learned Demonology, Images of the Devil

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pp. 11-21

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Demons in Krakow, and Image Magic in a Magical Handbook

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pp. 13-44

The curious genre of medieval magical handbooks has been researched for many decades. Already Lynn Thorndike, in his famous History of Magic and Experimental Science, gave a typology and an exhaustive description of magical practices, including the relatively innocent methods...

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“A Wall of Bronze” or Demons versus Saints: Whose Victory?

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pp. 45-53

Barbara Newman, in her study of devout women, demoniacs, and the apostolic life in thirteenth-century Europe proposed that in her material (thirteenth-century exempla) the demoniacs “played a necessary part on the stage of the evangelical drama—so necessary, indeed, that if...

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An Iconographical Approach to Representations of the Devil in Medieval Hungary

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pp. 54-71

Discussing representations of the devil is at least as complicated as discussing the devil itself. The appearances of specific forms of the devil are closely related to the evolution and changes of the notion of the devil. The more “good” and “evil” begin to polarize, the more their representations...

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Talking With Demons. Early Modern Theories and Practice

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pp. 72-88

Although half a century ago it may have seemed surprising, by today we are quite used to the idea that early modern Humanism was by no means the enlightened and rational period as some interpreters of the Renaissance wanted to see and to have it seen. Decades of research in...

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Protestant Devil Figures in Hungary

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pp. 89-108

Protestant church art is decorative art and, as in Europe in general, it has had a big influence in Hungary on shaping festive and everyday objects. This “revolution in the decoration of objects” occurred in Hungary in the seventeenth century, unimpeded even by the confusion...

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The Devil and Birthgiving

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pp. 109-118

In Swedish folklore in Finland the devil was regarded as a helper when a woman was in pain giving birth to her child. Alternatively, he helped a mother to make her unwanted baby disappear. In this paper I shall consider the folklore texts as complements to the creation myth...

Part II. Exchanges between Elite and Popular Concepts

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pp. 119-129

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Serpent-damsels and Dragon-slayers: Overlapping Divinities in a Medieval Tradition

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pp. 121-138

St. Margaret of Antioch, best known for defeating the dragon who tries to swallow her, is associated with later medieval fertility and childbirth beliefs in a set of cultic practices that emphasized her divine powers of protection. Contemporaneous narratives of maidens who change into...

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Jewish, Noble, German, or Peasant? — The Devil in Early Modern Poland

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pp. 139-151

This study will discuss a selection of the ideas and images of the devil prevalent in the Polish lands during the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, through the prism of Polish witchcraft trials in opposition to early modern Polish literature. The literature includes...

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Sexual Encounters with Spirits and Demons in Early Modern Sweden: Popular and Learned Concepts in Conflict and Interaction

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pp. 152-169

The subject of this essay is the confrontation and interaction between popular traditions and learned doctrines in early modern Sweden regarding the sexual activities of spirits and demons and how it evolved over time. Traditional notions were appropriated and redefined by representatives of elite culture, while learned doctrines were appropriated...

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Church Demonology and Popular Beliefs in Early Modern Sweden

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pp. 170-180

The witch-trials in Sweden reached their climax around the years 1660–1670. At this time the Devil was considered to be very active, which is reflected in legal sources and in measurements taken by the authorities. The aim of this paper is to discuss in what way different groups...

Part III. Evil Magic and Demons in East European and Asian Folklore

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pp. 181-191

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Saintly and Sympathetic Magic in the Lore of the Jews of Carpatho-Russia Between the Two World Wars

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pp. 183-193

Jews have lived in Carpatho-Russia (or Sub-Carpathian Ruthenia, at present the western part of the Ukraine Republic) since the late medieval era (Jelinek 2003; Gutman 1990, 4, pp. 1472–73). They were as a rule Hasidic in a Galician fashion (Stransky 1971, p. 349), rural, and...

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Magic as Reflected in Slovenian Folk Tradition and Popular Healing Today

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pp. 194-201

In Slovenia, folk traditions related to witchcraft are considerably rich and diverse. According to older sources, wizards and witches were mythological and demonic creatures just like the kresnik, the vedomec/ benandanti, the lamija, the fairies, etc.; other sources, on the other...

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Categories of the “Evil Dead” in Macedonian Folk Religion

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pp. 202-212

In the traditional attitude of the community towards its deceased members of great importance, we can find the notion that they are divided depending on their personal characteristics into categories of pure, suspicious and impure (Vaseva 1994, 3. pp. 154–55). The whole...

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Balkan Demons’ Protecting Places

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pp. 213-220

My paper is about folk beliefs reflecting images of the so-called “lower mythology.” Among various types of demons belonging to this “lower mythology,” I will focus on demons protecting places because of their specific character in the ethnocultural traditions of the Balkans. The...

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Demons of Fate in Macedonian Folk Beliefs

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pp. 221-236

The belief in fate is widely present in Macedonian folk beliefs and folk narrative. It is believed that people’s fate is determined on the third night after their birth. Existence in this world begins with birth, while the period until birth is a time of non-existence or an existence of some...

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Gog and Magog in the Slovenian Folk Tradition

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pp. 237-249

In 1882 an article on national folk traditions was published in Kres, a Klagenfurt monthly, which contained a legend entitled “The Great Wall of China,” recorded in the Tolmin area (NW Slovenia) by Fonovski. The story is as follows:...

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Systematization of the Concept of Demonic and Evil in Mongolian Folk Religion

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pp. 250-264

Being a part of an ongoing project dealing with the new interpretation of the Mongolian mythology, this paper is an attempt to offer a kind of systematization of the phenomenon of evil and the demonic in Mongolian folk religion. Ritual and folklore texts of different Mongolian...

List of Contributors

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pp. 265-270

Index

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pp. 271-284

Back cover

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p. 294-294


E-ISBN-13: 9786155211010
Print-ISBN-13: 9789637326769

Page Count: 294
Publication Year: 2006

Edition: 1st
Series Title: Demons, Spirits, Witches
Series Editor Byline: 2