Chapter

Introduction

Glenn Peers

in Subtle Bodies

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 2001 | ISBN: 9780520224056
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520925137 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520224056.003.0001
Introduction

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This chapter examines theology and miracle stories, and discusses the ways in which both of these genres dealt with the danger of the worship of angels and presented seemly examples of a different approach instead. This study deals with textual evidence of attitudes towards angels and their images; it is also the work of an art historian. It draws on intellectual history, which includes theology, miracle stories, poetry, and sermons, and incorporates them into a history of representation. At the center of the study are the cultural conditions of seeing and understanding. This is an epistemology for which angels are the most trying and dangerous case. Transparent images of formless beings made for especially treacherous rapids, which the Byzantines attempted to stop up, this study looks at the shifting waters and dams that having images of angels necessitated.

Keywords: theology; angels; images; history; epistemology

Chapter.  4870 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology

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