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ENGL 237: Living with the Dead: Attitudes Towards Death in Medieval Britain (HC) Fall 2016

English 237: Living with the Dead: Attitudes Towards Death in Medieval Britain (Mills) Fall 2016

Finding Primary Sources

Primary sources written during the Middle Ages provide vantage points from which to understand concepts and world views from a different era.

Anthologies

Anthologies collecting translated texts are a good place to begin looking at the range of primary sources available:

Art of Dying

This medieval literary genre addressed the ways in which people could have a good death.  The Virgin Mary provided an ideal for the faithful to emulate: calm, steadfast, contrite, and prayerful.  Texts in the 15th century elaborated on this advice, being particularly concerned about the trials and temptations experienced even in the hour of death.  The authors endeavored to prepare people and provide them with reassurance.

Documents

Series in Translation

There are a number of series which translate medieval texts into modern English. See in particular: