Satané Dieu (Hors collection littérature française) (French Edition)

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The habitants of the Beauce possessed a popular folklore based on the assumption that the material and the spiritual worlds were interdependent and that there was regular interaction between them. Consequently, on the spiritual side, the borders between the worlds of the Church and the people were porous and overlapping.

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People accepted the clerical supernatural as a given part of daily life, constantly resorting to Catholic or para-catholic rituality to act upon the world. A number of ethnographic studies have given us insights into the popular culture of Beauce County. As one of the most renowned figures of Christian mythology, Satan, it might be thought, really needs no introduction. However, the image of Satan, so familiar to the popular imagination today, actually arrived somewhat late on the scene in Western culture, a construct of the late Middle Ages.

In Christian teaching Satan was originally the leader of the Heavenly angels who revolted against God and were all cast out of Heaven. A narrow circle of theologians held arcane debates over the nature of angels, the extent that Lucifer and his demon followers retained their incorporeal angelic properties, and even to which order of angels they belonged. For an ordinary Christian in those early centuries, the invisible world was full of a vast number of more or less powerful beings whose respective places in the universe were not yet precisely defined in terms of Good and Evil.

Saints could avenge themselves on the living while demons could often be summoned to help people.

The Middle Ages to (Part I) - The Cambridge History of French Thought

In addition, before the twelfth century there was relatively little apparent ecclesiastical concern over popular practices of magic and sorcery, suggesting that the Church did not feel threatened by the superstitious convictions of the people and still less by a satanic counter-religion, denounced with such passion a few centuries later. It was not until the twelfth or thirteenth centuries that the process of demonization so to speak of Satan began in Europe.

Subsequently, the dark force of Satan loomed menacingly in Christian mythology as a counter to the divine light of Heaven, which was the image brought to New France by the early colonists. From the twelfth century on came yet another development in the construction of the Devil. Previously the clergy pictured the Devil and his minions as incorporeal entities who were incapable of acting upon living beings, which thus excluded sexual relations between them.

But with the development of the idea of incubi which were evil spirits that took seductive male form, and succubae which were the female equivalent, came the logical next step which was that these demons could seduce and engage in sexual intercourse with people.

Interview vidéo de Gaston Mahoungou - auteur de Hiérarchie de l'Eglise Biblique

As dark a presence as Satan was usually reputed to be in clerical discourse, popular tales granted that even he had his good side. There are even several locations in Saint-Joseph that he is said to have visited, leaving his imprint on a large rock. Suddenly he disappeared, leaving the impression of his seated form in the stone. He also appeared to people in many forms in order to reinforce proper moral behaviour. A most unexpected place for him to have appeared was to aid church construction. Why Satan was in high demand as a contractor for religious buildings is unclear because these tales provide absolutely no explanation why the Devil would even want to help construct churches.

Popular tales about the Devil reinforced another aspect of clerical condemnation, the increased prevalence of swearing and blasphemy, a trend that clerics identified with mounting alarm from the middle of the nineteenth century.

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Fortunately for the clergy, here again Satan came to the rescue in numerous stories of retribution, where the Devil carried unrepentant blasphemers off to hell. Ernest Couture, who was around twenty years old at the time, was working with a logging crew in Maine composed of twenty-five men. When the clergyman showed him the crucifix, all he got for his efforts were curses. Then a large black dog appeared and the camp filled with smoke.

When it had cleared, both dog and blasphemer had vanished, convincing Couture that he had really seen the Devil. In , the Reverend F. Gosselin noted the rise in blasphemy in his report from Saint-Joseph. In addition to the Devil, there is a well-documented popular belief in his minions, such as sorcerers and loups-garous werewolves. The loup-garou had the head and body of a wolf and kept its predatory properties, but had enhanced bestial appetites of concupiscence, hunger, and rage which erased its rationality and spirituality.

A story from the nineteenth century handed down in the Rodrigue family of Saint-Joseph tells of a man who had not attended mass and had neglected to confess his sins for seven years, and was turned into a loup-garou. When he was delivered from this condition, he sinned no more. But no one is lost forever. According to Church teaching, the body reacts to sensual stimulations, while the soul controls the spiritual powers of intelligence and will.

Endowed with divine reason and purpose, people must arrive at judgements of good and evil to save their immortal soul. They must master and even deny their morally dangerous physical nature, and not surrender to their passions, because the Devil — the incarnation of evil — inspires these passions. If a choice must be made between the welfare of the soul or that of the body, the choice must always be made in favour of the soul.

It was a complete set of guidelines for Catholic parents to help their children navigate the morally dangerous currents of nineteenth-century life.

Emphasizing the moral dangers of dancing, Monseigneur Turgeon declared that those who were obstinate enough not to stop, or who encouraged others to engage in dancing, were unworthy to receive the sacraments. Some forms of dance, of course, were morally more dubious than others. Some were even positively immodest. This latter group included such modern dances as the waltz, the polka, the gallop, and the cancan. On danse pour le plaisir de danser. Popular tales featured him both as an intimidating violin player a subject that will not be discussed here and as a dashing figure at dances, particularly wedding celebrations.

Certain traits, however, could easily have alerted a keen observer to his satanic identity and must have been impossible to ignore even for the most obtuse reveller. In winter, the snow always melted around the hooves of the dark horse he rode. In some versions, Rose ignored these signs and warnings, kept on dancing with the Devil until he carried her off to Hell. In other versions she repented and was saved at the last minute by the timely intervention of the parish priest. A few sprinkles of holy water also helped avert disaster. In another story from Saint-Joseph, a young eighteen-year-old woman had died and was laid out in the family parlour before burial.

Even though dancing was forbidden in the village, relatives and friends of the deceased retired to the kitchen where they danced through the evening. Around midnight, a darkly handsome young man dressed in black, but who never removed his gloves, appeared and asked permission to pay his respects to the deceased young woman. Permission granted, he went in and closed the door.

The rest of the company then decided it was time to say the rosary for the deceased, but when they went into the parlour both the corpse and the young man had disappeared, never to be seen again. Dancing in itself was serious enough in the eyes of the clergy, but behind their hand wringing about dancing, drinking, and extended courtships lurked a more urgent preoccupation for the men of the cloth who had always deemed these activities to be dangerous outward expressions of youthful sexuality.

While all cultures share a concern with the regulation of sexuality, it is extremely difficult to distinguish clearly between religious and social controls in regulating sexual mores in most pre-modern societies. Large numbers of people enjoyed dancing too, including parents who supposedly forbade their young to do so. The ubiquity of dancing suggests that the dichotomy that is supposed to have existed between the community and deviant individuals, or between Civilization and Nature, is overdrawn. In Saint-Joseph, marriages resulting from unintended pregnancies were extremely rare as is indicated in the table below, based on the dates recorded in the parish registers for marriages and births for the first six years of each decade during the period , , etc.

Late Medieval and Early Modern Studies (LMEMS)

In the thirty years examined there were marriages and 4, births. Matching the date of marriage of the parents with that of the birth of their first child in cases revealed that 90 percent of first conceptions after marriage occurred at least ten months after the ceremony, in some cases up to two years afterwards. A much smaller number of births occurred within eight or nine months after marriage, times that could have been due to early births due to the pregnancy occurring just before or just after the marriage.

The number of births occurring less than eight months after marriage were extremely low in the last half of the nineteenth century, a mere thirteen in thirty years. Mai novembre Original Velum binding. A precious personal "logbook" of a Marseilles sailor covering a period of forty years, recounting his successive embarkations to the trade and in the "Royale", from until his capture on November 3, , his detention on the pontoons and at the Dartmoor Prison until May 27, , and his last embarkations from June to November 5, document of considerable value for the knowledge of the maritime environment of the end of the 18th century, the heavy traffic in the Mediterranean and beyond, with first-hand accounts of the battles of Aboukir and Trafalgar and the lives of French sailors trapped on British pontoons.


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The manuscript includes: Part One: From the first embarkation to Trafalgar ; Part two: Captivity on the pontoons and at Dartmoor ; Third part: freedom refound. Latest boarding.


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  6. May November First part: from the first embarkation to Trafalgar : it includes 31 embarkations, with a text indicating, for each ship, the detailed account of the navigation and a watercolor representing it. These navigations "to trade", all in the Mediterranean, except two in the Antilles, become from the 18th embarkation squadron sailing in the service of the King, the Republic, then the Emperor, whose first, after a fight against the English, ends with desertion and imprisonment.

    The reading of this picturesque and poignant document leaves the impression of a whole life devoted to action: Scarcely arrived and despite all the vicissitudes, Jaubert immediately seeks another ship, as if the ground burns his feet; attitude that is not unlike that of the illustrious Duguay Trouin.

    The adventures experienced by Jaubert are innumerable: he finds himself a stowaway on an Italian brigantine; led the Pasha of Constantinople to Crete, the Grand Vizier of Crete to Constantinople, and Greek women from island to island; brings from Algiers to Marseille French slaves captured in Corfu; Loads of Calamata figs, oranges, butter, cheese and wax cattle Skyros?


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