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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter provides a brief overview of the book Visions in Late Medieval England: Lay Spirituality and Sacred Glimpses of the Hidden Worlds of Faith and its chapters. The outworking of the Faith in the spirituality of the late medieval world utilized a number of key dynamics. The vision, both by its contents and function, exemplified these dynamics. This book examines the role that the vision played in demonstrating and reinforcing five of the important dynamics of late medieval lay spirituality in England. It is the first to look at a large number of didactic visions that appear in the most widely-disseminated vernacular works for the religious instruction of the laity in a particular country in order to assess both what the accounts say about the visionary worldview taught to the laypeople and to study their impact on the visions of the laity.

Keywords: didactic visions; Faith; Late Medieval England; lay spirituality; religious instruction; sacred glimpses



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