Topic: 2. Sacrifice and religion: Comparisons, Antiquarians, Anthropology (16th-18th Century)

Religious sacrifices across various cultures and contexts sparked widespread interest in Early Modern Europe. As Christianity expanded into regions inhabited by "infidels" and "pagans", Europeans encountered a diverse array of sacrificial customs, ranging from the Sati rituals in India to the Aztec sacrifices in the Americas. This cross-cultural exposure captivated a wide audience, including theologians, philosophers, political thinkers, antiquarians, orientalists, missionaries, poets, artists, and even the general public. These encounters broadened the European understanding of sacrifice and led to a critical reassessment of classical and biblical sacrificial rites. This section includes:

  • Sources: A selection of early modern printed materials, which include descriptions of the Americas, Asia, and Africa, alongside antiquarian and philological studies on religious sacrifice in classical antiquity and beyond. It also presents early modern works of ethnological observations and the first attempts to compare different sacrificial practices in various traditions and contexts, laying the groundwork for disciplines like the history of religions and anthropology.
  • Iconographic Representations: A rich collection of images from the 16th to 18th centuries, illustrating a range of sacrificial rituals and practices as seen in different cultural and geographical contexts.
  • Related Bibliography: An extensive bibliography spanning scholarly works from the 19th to 21st centuries, providing contemporary analyses and interpretations of these early studies and observations.

Displaying results from 1 to 20 of 1984

Persons bringing sacrifices to Hercules (1629)

from: Philostratus of Lemnos. Les images ou tableaux de platte peinture des deux Philostrates, sophistes grecs, et les Statues de Callistrate, tr. Blaise de Vigenère. Paris. 1629, p. 494.

The Warburg Institute, London

Wright Kunst, J. - Várhelyi, Z. (Eds.)

Ancient Mediterranean Sacrifice

Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.


Le sacrifice 5

in: Systèmes de pensée en Afrique noire

Paris: École Pratique des Hautes Études. Section des sciences religieuses, 1983.

Displaying results from 1 to 20 of 1984