Abstract

This essay offers a new reading of the famous sequence in Devotions upon Emergent Occasions wherein John Donne hears bells tolling for an anonymous neighbor. Donne effectively doubles himself, I argue, so that we can simultaneously observe his charity as the dying and his charity toward the dying. In the process, Donne also engages with the controversy over prayer for the dead, artfully satisfying the competing demands of charitably thinking well of the dead already and of charitably interceding on their behalf.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 93-110
Launched on MUSE
2016-03-04
Open Access
No
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