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The Incorporation of Ruusbroec's Spiritual Espousals into the Sixteenth-Century Arnhem Mystical Sermons. A Comparative Textual Analysis

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The anonymous Arnhem Mystical Sermons (Royal Library, The Hague, ms. 133 H 13), copied around 1560–1575 in the St. Agnes convent in Arnhem, is the largest sermon collection that has no other corresponding compilation. Till now, no concrete sources had been identified. This article elaborates on my discovery that one sermon (111) has incorporated a part of Ruusbroec's Spiritual Espousals with significant adaptations. This article provides a detailed analysis of the similarities and modifications, thereby showing the continuity and discontinuity with the fourteenth-century Ruusbroec and relating these differences to the context of the sixteenth-century by showing parallels with other mystical works from the region of Arnhem, namely the Evangelical Pearl and the Temple of Our Soul.

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Theology, Dept. of Church History, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Sint Michielsstraat 6 bus 3101, B – Leuven, 3000;, Email:


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