Chantry Chapels and Medieval Strategies for the Afterlife

Chantry Chapels and Medieval Strategies for the Afterlife : And Medieval Strategies for the Afterlife

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Beliefs in the afterlife dominated the images, literature and liturgy of medieval church and society. In particular, the concept of purgatory - a penitential state where the soul was purged of sin and therefore able to attain eventual salvation - was a central element. Barring a life of extraordinary saintliness, most medieval people anticipated a long stay in purgatory. However, this time could be lessened through various strategies, including the organization of a range of memorial and commemorative practices and, particularly, the foundation of chantry chapels. Chantry chapels were often outstanding additions to parish and monastic church spaces and, despite the ravages of the Reformation, many still survive. These structures, much altered with time, are still a noticeable feature of many churches and cathedrals. This book offers a thematic approach to such monuments, combining archaeological approaches with relevant documentary sources and discussing aspects of chantry chapel foundation, design and spatial arrangements, as well as their origins and the effects the Reformation had on these constructions. It will also consider the various different types of chantry chapel including those in colleges, churches, cathedrals, bridges and hospitals. This is a fascinating study of monuments that were devised as a strategy to improve the afterlife and were one of the most important and influential institutions of the medieval period.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 192 pages
  • 172 x 246 x 14mm | 521.63g
  • Stroud, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 29 Illustrations, color; 16 Plates, color
  • 0752445715
  • 9780752445717
  • 1,855,961

About Simon Roffey

Dr Simon Roffey has been Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Winchester since 2002 where he lectures on Church Archaeology, the Archaeology of Monasticism, Public Archaeology, Buildings Archaeology, Theory and Research Methods and Archaeological Fieldwork Methodologies.
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