The End and Beyond

John Carey (Editor); Emma Nic Cárthaigh (Editor); Caitríona Ó Dochartaigh (Editor)


ISBN: 9781891271205
Publisher: Celtic Studies Publications
Year of Publication: 2014
Binding: Hardback
Language: English
Pages: 964

What awaits us beyond the grave is perhaps the fundamental human mystery. Visionary accounts of the afterlife are attested long before the Common Era, and loomed large in the imaginative universe of early Christianity. The medieval Irish inherited and further transformed this tradition, producing vivid eschatological narratives which had a profound impact throughout Europe as well as being works of remarkable literary and spiritual power in their own right. Under the headings ‘Soul and Body’, ‘The Seven Heavens’, ‘The Next World’, and ‘The Judgement and its Signs’, this book presents critical editions, with translation and commentary, of 26 eschatological texts from the Old, Middle, and Early Modern Irish periods, together with related material in Latin and Old English. Some of these works are here edited for the first time. Extended essays survey Irish eschatological literature a whole, and place it in its wider context; and the volume concludes with a comprehensive handlist of Irish eschatological compositions.

This book consists of two volumes.

The End and Beyond … presents the most comprehensive and accessible collection of primary sources related to medieval Irish eschatology available. … It will be especially useful for scholars wishing to take full account of the development of Irish eschatological thought from the earliest periods through to the early modern era, and will undoubtedly provide, students and academics alike, an indispensible guide to the key texts that will fuel research and energize discovery within this complex and fascinating subject for years to come. (Nathan Millin, Peritia 26 (2015), p. 238)