In a Corporeal Flame : The Materiality of Hellfire Before the Resurrection in Six Latin Authors

Journal article


Barbezat, Michael. (2013). In a Corporeal Flame : The Materiality of Hellfire Before the Resurrection in Six Latin Authors. Viator: Medieval and Renaissance studies. 44(3), pp. 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1484/J.VIATOR.1.103476
AuthorsBarbezat, Michael
Abstract

This article examines pre-thirteenth century discussions of the materiality or immateriality of hellfire in the time before the resurrection in the works of Augustine, Gregory the Great, Julian of Toledo, Hugh of St. Victor, Peter Lombard, and Aelred of Rievaulx. I chart two possibilities regarding hellfire’s nature. In the first, the flames of Hell are incorporeal like the souls of the damned and are experienced in a manner parallel to the images encountered by dreamers. In the second, hellfire is a corporeal fire that torments the souls of the damned before the resurrection, as well as their souls and renewed bodies after the resurrection. Discussions of hellfire’s corporeality illuminate the relationship between the spiritual and the material, particularly that between material reality and its immaterial likenesses. In these discussions, incorporeal likeness or image often functions as the equivalent of the material and the experience of the bodily senses; nevertheless, a corporeal fire that is more than spirit or image consistently emerges as a key point of belief and material continuity between the embodied present and the eschaton.

KeywordsAugustine; Gregory the Great; Julian of Toledo; Hugh of St. Victor; Peter Lombard; Aelred of Rievaulx; Hell; fire; Christian materiality
Year01 Jan 2013
JournalViator: Medieval and Renaissance studies
Journal citation44 (3), pp. 1-20
PublisherBrepols Publishers
ISSN0083-5897
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1484/J.VIATOR.1.103476
Web address (URL)https://www.brepolsonline.net/doi/10.1484/J.VIATOR.1.103476
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Page range1-20
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All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
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Print2013
Publication process dates
Deposited24 May 2024
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All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher.

Place of publicationBelgium
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