In the fourteenth century a huge change took place in thinking about death: the kingdom of the beyond became full of dreadful suffering. This new mentality derives from the belief in Purgatory, that took hold in the twelfth century, but reached its high point only in the fifteenth: the judgement of the dead would take place immediately after death. Prayers and money invested in order to obtain remission of sins encouraged the expansion of a true “economy of death” manageable from earth. The birth of the Observance movement inside the Mendicant Orders may be connected with this new sensibility, in which the faithful are more concerned with their personal salvation. The “death-spectacles” evoked by Girolamo Savonarola became lenses through which to look at life, but even before him many authors of laude – vernacular religious songs mainly composed for civic confraternities – express the same modern thought on death inspired by Holy Scripture, but excluding high poetic models. The common practice of “cantasi come ...” – the reuse of music known with a different text now turned to fear of death – confirms the strong contiguity between life and death, read as a true “extension” of life.

“Death-Spectacles” in Quattrocento Life and Laude

FILOCAMO, GIOIA
2015

Abstract

In the fourteenth century a huge change took place in thinking about death: the kingdom of the beyond became full of dreadful suffering. This new mentality derives from the belief in Purgatory, that took hold in the twelfth century, but reached its high point only in the fifteenth: the judgement of the dead would take place immediately after death. Prayers and money invested in order to obtain remission of sins encouraged the expansion of a true “economy of death” manageable from earth. The birth of the Observance movement inside the Mendicant Orders may be connected with this new sensibility, in which the faithful are more concerned with their personal salvation. The “death-spectacles” evoked by Girolamo Savonarola became lenses through which to look at life, but even before him many authors of laude – vernacular religious songs mainly composed for civic confraternities – express the same modern thought on death inspired by Holy Scripture, but excluding high poetic models. The common practice of “cantasi come ...” – the reuse of music known with a different text now turned to fear of death – confirms the strong contiguity between life and death, read as a true “extension” of life.
2015
Gioia Filocamo
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/478170
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