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The Dance of Death   By: (1510-1568)

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The Dance of Death by Gilles Corrozet is an intriguing and thought-provoking piece of literature that explores the various aspects of death and the inevitability of mortality. Set during the 16th century, the book delves into the lives of individuals from different walks of life, highlighting their encounters with death and the profound impact it has on them.

Corrozet skillfully depicts death as an omnipresent force, an ever-looming specter that ultimately unites every living being. Through a collection of vivid and allegorical sketches, he presents death as a great equalizer, transcending social hierarchies and revealing the fragility of human existence. Each chapter features a different character, from the noble and wealthy to the lowly and impoverished, all of whom are confronted with the reality of their mortality.

One of the most compelling aspects of this book is the author's mastery of descriptive language. Corrozet's detailed imagery vividly captures the emotions and experiences of the characters as they navigate through life, death, and everything in between. His evocative descriptions of funeral processions, gravestones, and dance macabre scenes create a haunting atmosphere that lingers throughout the narrative.

Moreover, The Dance of Death delves into deeper philosophical and moral themes, exploring questions pertaining to the value of life, the fleeting nature of human achievement, and the inevitability of death's embrace. It prompts readers to reflect on their own mortality and encourages a contemplative approach towards existence.

However, one potential drawback of the book is its occasionally meandering narrative. While the vignettes provide rich insights into the characters, some chapters feel disjointed and lack a clear connection to the overarching storyline. This may prove challenging for readers seeking a more coherent and cohesive narrative structure.

Nevertheless, The Dance of Death remains an exceptional work of literature that grapples with timeless and universal themes. Its poignant portrayal of death as an impartial force, its masterful imagery, and its philosophical undertones make it a captivating read for those interested in exploring the complexities of human mortality and the profound impact it has on our lives. Corrozet's words dance off the pages, leaving a lasting impression on the reader's mind, and inviting reflection on the beauty and transience of life itself.

First Page:

The Dance of Death

by Hans Holbein, with an

introductory note by

Austin Dobson


Copyright, 1903, by SCOTT THAW COMPANY

The Heintzemann Press, Boston


=The Book=

" Les Simulachres & Historiées Faces de la Mort avtant elegamtment pourtraictes, que artificiellement imaginées. " This may be Englished as follows: The Images and Storied Aspects of Death, as elegantly delineated as [they are] ingeniously imagined. Such is the literal title of the earliest edition of the famous book now familiarly known as " Holbein's Dance of Death. " It is a small quarto , bearing on its title page, below the French words above quoted, a nondescript emblem with the legend Vsus me Genuit , and on an open book, Gnothe seauton . Below this comes again, " A Lyon, Soubz l'escu de Coloigne : M. D. XXXVIII," while at the end of the volume is the imprint " Excvdebant Lvgdvni Melchoir et Gaspar Trechsel fratres: 1538 ," the Trechsels being printers of German origin, who had long been established at Lyons. There is a verbose "Epistre" or Preface in French to the " moult reuerende Abbesse du religieux conuent S. Pierre de Lyon, Madame Iehanne de Touszele ," otherwise the Abbess of Saint Pierre les Nonnains, a religious house containing many noble and wealthy ladies, and the words, " Salut d'un vray Zèle ," which conclude the dedicatory heading, are supposed to reveal indirectly the author of the "Epistre" itself, namely, Jean de Vauzelles, Pastor of St... Continue reading book >>

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