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The Stripping and the Shaming of Heretics

  • Thomas A. Fudgé
Chapter
  • 496 Downloads
Part of the The New Middle Ages book series (TNMA)

Abstract

In medieval Europe, social status was often indicated by clothing. Sartorial considerations might be used to reflect power and rank, or its removal might be a social mechanism for indicating shame and humiliation. In the context of heresy, that principle became a prevailing example of power and control. Medieval canon law mandated the defrocking of priests found worthy of excommunication. Jan Hus was defrocked during the Council of Constance. Stripping heretics or one’s enemies was a form of punishment underscoring contempt for medieval underworlds and an insistence upon social order and social categories. In the struggle against heresy and its repression, war and violence in Bohemia often featured the stripping and shaming of those who were conquered.

Keywords

Religious Practice Twelfth Century Public Penance Public Humiliation Medieval Society 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas A. Fudgé
    • 1
  1. 1.School of HumanitiesUniversity of New EnglandArmidaleAustralia

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