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Prudentius

virtues vices battle spanish

Prudentius was a Spanish lawyer, hymn writer, and poet, whose works include several influential collections, for example, the Peristephanon (hymns to Spanish and Italian martyrs), the Cathemerinon (hymns for daily use), several poems on theological subjects, and the Psychomachia , an allegorial poem describing the conflict of *virtues and *vices. The interior battle of good and evil in the human *soul, as previously discussed by Tertullian (in the early third century), is described in this work via a series of personifications of the virtues and vices as female figures whose appearances and actions are discussed in detail. Faith rushes into the battle unprotected but triumphs over Idolatry. Uncontrolled Anger rages against calm Patience and commits suicide. Pride prances on horseback and falls into a pit dug by Dis  honesty. Hope cuts off the head of Pride. Temperance upsets the jeweled cart of Self-indulgence, and so on. The virtues always triumph. The detailed descriptions in this work inspired artists and writers throughout the medieval period. Several illustrated texts survive, and the text and format inspired several other authors (among them: *Herrad of Landsberg, *Hugh of Saint-Victor, *Isidore of Seville, and *Vincent of Beauvais). Depictions of the virtues and vices are frequent in Romanesque and Gothic architectural sculpture.
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