Cover: Christian Mortalism from Tyndale to Milton, from Harvard University PressCover: Christian Mortalism from Tyndale to Milton in E-DITION

Christian Mortalism from Tyndale to Milton

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$65.00 • £54.95 • €60.00

ISBN 9780674731622

Publication Date: 01/01/1972

222 pages


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The idea that the Bible teaches that a person’s soul is not naturally immortal may seem a peculiar view to some, but it had numerous supporters among pious Englishmen of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Norman Burns presents a detailed examination of the tenets of various Christian mortalists, grouping these radical reformers into three categories: those who believed that the soul was alive but unconscious—“asleep”— between death and the resurrection of the body; those who held that the soul perished with the body, but was resurrected with it to eternal life; and those who denied any form of personal afterlife. Burns gives a judicious account of the radical tradition behind the mortalist ideas in Milton’s Christine Doctrine, Overton’s Man’s Mortality, and Hobbes’s Leviathan.

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