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date: 01 December 2021

p. 946. Enduring imageslocked

p. 946. Enduring imageslocked

  • Paul Slack


‘Enduring images’ describes the various images which have been attached to plague. These include graphic metaphors, like the arrows of Apollo and the swords of biblical angels, which symbolize its causes; and literary conventions, such as those of Thucydides and Boccaccio about the disruption of families and societies, which summarize its consequences. Over time, new icons have been added to them, such as plague-saints and plague-doctors, and metaphors were borrowed from other contexts, like the Dance of Death and visions of the Apocalypse. Taken together, they determined how plague was imagined in the past. Ultimately, images of plague have a continuous history, invented and then elaborated over the centuries.

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