Unit 1 - Definitions

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  • Created by: Hannah
  • Created on: 01-05-13 20:08
Ancestor/Ancestor Cult
Belief that people are made of two parts; body and soul/mind. Soul/mind lives on after death, often taking an interesting in the living. E.g. Maya of Central America
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Animism
Belief that the world is shared with spirits of nature, such as animals and plants. E.g. Native Americans.
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Art and Iconography
Art is the symbolic representation of an object(s) of worship or the representation of a story including the object(s) of worship. Often a particular set of symbols can become associated with a particular object, this is its iconography.
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Example of Art and Iconography
E.g. Tomb of Nefertari reliefs.
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Cremation
The burning of remains, often placed in an urn or pot. E.g. Romans or the Anglo-Saxons.
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Excarnation
Leaving remains out for the softer tissues to be eaten by the wildlife. The bones/hard tissue are then collected and buried. E.g. West Kennet Long Barrow
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Focus of Attention
Way to recognise religious and ritual sites; highlight importance of a play by focusing attention, make the visitor feel as though they are moving into the presence of a god. E.g. Sacred places on mountains/hills.
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Funerary Ritual
Rituals which take place in funerary ceremonies, including the treatment of the dead. E.g. Mummification
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Grave Goods
Objects buried with the deceased for their use in the afterlife. Info on religious and ritual beliefs; social statue; material culture; technology; economy. E.g. Tutankhamun's Tomb.
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Inhumation
The burial of a body. E.g. Romans and Anglo-Saxons.
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Liminal
On the border; religious and ritual sites often put in such places; closer to god. On the edge of normal society. E.g. Ely Cathedral
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Magic
Attempt to influence events, can bring good fortune to oneself or bad fortune to others or ward off evil. E.g. wearing of Amulets in Ancient Egypt
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Monotheism
The belief in one god. E.g. Christianity; Islam; Judaism
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Myth
Body of stories about gods and goddesses to explain and reinforce religious and ritual beliefs and rituals. Often involve the origin of the world. E.g. Creation myths of Egypt.
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Pilgrim
Someone who travels to a religious site to worship the god(dess) found there, often to acquire something (e.g. healing). E.g. Canterbury Cathedral
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Polytheism
Belief in more than one god. E.g. Ancient Egyptians; Greek; Roman; Hinduism.
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Prayer/Participation
Evidence of such participation often found in religious and ritual sites. E.g. making gestures while praying in art; dance, music, drugs and the infliction of pain.
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Priest/Ritual Ritualist
People with special knowledge of the divine; used to get in touch with gods. Priests = full time. Shamans = part time. E.g. Catholic Priests
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Propitiation/Votives
Making offerings in worship, often food and drink or objects of religious significance. Animal and human sacrifices can sometimes take place. E.g. Lindow Man
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Purity and Cleansing
Boundary between this world and the next. Keep the profane from the next world by keeping clean. Make those crossing into the world of the gods clean. E.g. Sacred Lakes
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Rites of Passage
Rituals to mark a significant event in an individual's life e.g. birth, puberty, marriage. E.g. Mummification
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Rites of Intensification
Events to mark times of change or danger e.g. Seasons. E.g. sacrifices of the Greeks before they set sail to destroy Troy in the Illiad.
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Ritual
A way of expressing religious faith. Involves repreated performance usually in a particular place. Brings people into contact with god and forges social bonds. E.g. Opet Festival
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Ritual Feasting
Sharing of food as a part of a ritual to bind people together. E.g. meal at the tomb during funerals in Ancient Egypt. As depicted at Nebamun's tomb.
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Sacrifice
A form of offering in which something is given up. E.g. Shabtis represented the sacrifice of real servants.
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Sensory Experience
Way in which people are brought nearer to god through their senses; involving all senses. E.g. Muu dancers at funeral.
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Shamanism
Part time religious specialists of hunter-gatherer societies. Act by going into trances with the help of drungs and dancing to interact with the spririts in order to help the living. E.g. Upton Lovell Bronze Age Burial
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Shrine/Temple/Ritual Structure
A particular place where a god(dess) resides and can be communicated with. These places are often used to celebrate the deity. E.g. Temples of Karnak and Luxor, Thebes.
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Symbolism
Picture representation of religious ideas to make the meaning clear to even outsiders.
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Totemism
When people believe they have a particular spirit which looks after them. Totem poles have been used in the past to represent totem animals which people believed protected them E.g. Ibister Long Barrow (sea eagle).
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Worldview
Religions come with a view of the world; tell what people to do, map out a sacred landscape, describe the afterlife. Passed on down generations; embodied in monuments.E.g. Ancient Egyptian idea; West is where the dead resides.
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Worship
Devotion to heaping praise on the deity. May leave indirect evidence. E.g. votive statues in Ancient Egyptian temples.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Belief that the world is shared with spirits of nature, such as animals and plants. E.g. Native Americans.

Back

Animism

Card 3

Front

Art is the symbolic representation of an object(s) of worship or the representation of a story including the object(s) of worship. Often a particular set of symbols can become associated with a particular object, this is its iconography.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

E.g. Tomb of Nefertari reliefs.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

The burning of remains, often placed in an urn or pot. E.g. Romans or the Anglo-Saxons.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
View more cards

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