Events Diary

The World Heritage Site is a hive of activity, with many concerts, plays, talks and other events. What will you find of interest?

The events shown are taking place on or around Durham World Heritage Site. If you are organising an event, please tell us about it.

Dante's predecessors: the origins of purgatory in the early Middle Ages

  • 24 Wednesday 24th January 2018 at 1.00pm Location: Institute of Advanced Studies Seminar Room, Coisin's Hall, Palace Green, Durham. Tickets Free, but booking is essential from

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Dante's predecessors: the origins of purgatory in the early Middle Ages

24th January 2018, 13:00, IAS Seminar Room, Helen Foxhall-Forbes

Booking is essential. Book your place here

Dante's masterpiece, Divina Commedia, blends his own imaginative brilliance with the rich traditions he inherited from previous generations of writers. This inherited material included a complex body of theological material and visionary literature which explored a range of ideas about the afterlife, and which developed over the centuries as Christians continually reinterpreted their relationship with God and the effects of that relationship on the fate of the soul in the next world. This lecture examines purgatory's origin in the early Middle Ages, and traces how and why the idea of an intermediate existence for the soul, neither heaven nor hell, was appealing and important to early medieval Christians as they sought to ensure their salvation in an uncertain world.

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