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Revisiting Salome's Dance in Medieval and Early Modern Iconology

Authors:  Baert B.

Year: 2016
ISBN: 978-90-429-3428-3
Pages: VIII-90
Price: 36 EURO

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Mark 6:14-29 and Matthew 14:1-12 recount the death of John the Baptist. Herod had him imprisoned for denouncing as incestuous his marriage to Herodias, the former wife of his brother. During a banquet, Herodiasí daughter dances before Herod, who is so enchanted that he promises her a favor. At her motherís behest, she asks for the head of John the Baptist. The king honors her request and has the head delivered to her on a plate (in disco), which she gives to her mother. When the disciples of John discover about his death, they bury his headless body. In this essay I revisit the iconographic motif of the dancing girl from an interdisciplinary perspective involving exegesis, gender, anthropology, ritual performance, psycho-energetics, Pathosformeln and paragone.

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