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Ars Moriendi

dying illustrations scenes text

The Ars moriendi (The Art of Dying) refers to two related works of the fifteenth century that provide directions and illustrations on the preparations and procedures for *death. A short version of the text, frequently illustrated with woodcut prints from the mid-fifteenth century, depicts deathbed scenes such an *angels and *demons awaiting the *soul of the dying person, and *devils tempting the dying person with despair, impatience, and pride. The illustrations are accompanied by a short text adapted from a longer and more detailed version produced c.1415, the Tractatus artis bene moriendi (The Art of Dying Well) , which also includes directions to onlookers and instructions for appropriate prayers. Concern about death and salvation were overwhelming preoccupations throughout the medieval period; the Ars moriendi is, however, the first practical manual on how to prepare for a “good death” and was used by clerics as well as lay people. The deathbed iconography of the illustrations also appears in earlier and contemporary Books of Hours in scenes for the Office of the Dead and elsewhere.

Artôt(real name, Montagney) [next] [back] Arroyo, Martina

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