Date of Award

5-2020

Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Studio Fine Arts

Second Department

History

First Advisor

Chris Duncan

Second Advisor

Steven Sargent

Keywords

Black Death, Plague, 1347

Abstract

This thesis examines how plague votives played a pivotal role in helping people cope with the epidemiological crisis known as the Black Death. With medical science powerless, people turned to religion for support. To facilitate devotion and prayers to sacred beings who might intercede on their behalf, a new art form was born. Created in various media, this new plague art, which incorporated previously existing religious imagery and motifs concerning death, offered universally understandable messages of hope and protection for worshippers.

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