Dying and Death in Later Anglo-Saxon England

September 2004
3 black and white, 5 line illustrations
246 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
Anglo-Saxon Studies
Library eBook
Boydell Press

Dying and Death in Later Anglo-Saxon England

Victoria Thompson


Hardback out of stock

Study of late Anglo-Saxon texts and grave monuments illuminates contemporary attitudes towards dying and the dead.
Pre-Conquest attitudes towards the dying and the dead have major implications for every aspect of culture, society and religion of the Anglo-Saxon period; but death-bed and funerary practices have been comparatively and unjustly neglected by historical scholarship. In her wide-ranging analysis, Dr Thompson examines such practices in the context of confessional and penitential literature, wills, poetry, chronicles and homilies, to show that complex and ambiguous ideas about death were current at all levels of Anglo-Saxon society. Her study also takes in grave monuments, showing in particular how the Anglo-Scandinavian sculpture of the ninth to the eleventh centuries may indicate not only the status, but also the religious and cultural alignment of those who commissioned and made them.

Victoria Thompson is Lecturer in the Centre for Nordic Studies at the University of the Highlands and Islands. .

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An exemplary study, written in an eloquent and engaging style and with relevance beyond the period with which it is concerned. MEDIEVAL ARCHAEOLOGY
A groundbreaking multidisciplinary study. SPECULUM
Does more than fill an obvious gap in the current literature: this is not only a necessary book, it is also a very rich and stimulating examination of the subject. EARLY MEDIEVAL EUROPE
A cultural study which should appeal to the scholar and student alike. MEDIUM AEVUM
Filled with evocative details, unexpected sources, and fresh insights, her book makes substantial contributions to Anglo-Saxon studies, medieval history, and the interdisciplinary investigation of death and dying. AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW
Lively and interesting. the book is well-written, a pleasure to read and easy to use.[...] This excellent book will have a wide appeal to scholars and to students alike. TOEBI NEWSLETTER
Turns out to contain a great deal of interest to the historian of medicine. It is also well written and illustrated, and therefore recommended to anyone interested in Anglo-Saxon medicine. MEDICAL HISTORY

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