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Journal > Volumes > 41 (2010) > 3 (Autumn)
3 (Autumn)
NOTE: Book reviews will be included in issue download
Love Magic & the Inquisition

Whenever she was in the presence of her husband, the newlywed Laura Coccapani was plagued by extraordinary woes, which witnesses attributed to demons. Conventional wisdom held that certain spells could cause people to be repulsed by their spouses, and many believed Valerio Trionfanti, a Franciscan with whom Coccapani once had a lengthy but unconsummated affair, had cast a spell. Launching an...

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Mary the French Queen & the Politics of Letter-Writing

This article concerns the letters of Mary Tudor Brandon, known as Mary the French queen, who defied her brother Henry VIII by secretly marrying her second husband, the Duke of Suffolk. Mary’s use of the epistolary genre to persuade Henry to accede to the match was born not merely out of necessity, but out of her awareness that letters were a powerful political tool that women could employ to...

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Disciplining Jews: The Papal Inquisition of Modena

In 1598, the year that Duke Cesare d’Este (1562–1628) lost Ferrara to papal forces and moved the capital of his duchy to Modena, the papal Inquisition in Modena was elevated from vicariate to full inquisitorial status. Despite initial clashes with the duke, the tribunal began not only to prosecute heretics and blasphemers, but also professing Jews. Such a policy towards infidels by an...

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Vows, Oaths, & Propagation of a Subversive Discourse

In sixteenth-century England, two discourses of divine promises existed side by side. First, Protestants and Catholics both upheld oaths as binding promises, undergirded by the sanctity of God and his holy name. Second, Protestants attacked monastic vows, claiming that these divine promises could and should be broken. Protestants did not want their challenge of monastic vows to subvert the...

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Imagining Esther in Early Modern France

This study argues that the characterization of the biblical heroine Esther was instrumental in early modern France in challenging and renegotiating the monarchical institution. Literary and visual representations of Esther suggest that the queen’s involvement is critical in ensuring justice and peace in the realm as she successfully turns Ahasuerus into a genuine king able to listen, share,...

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