„DEPART FROM ME, YOU CURSED!” AN INVENTORY OF THE SINNER WORLD
The concept of sinner had a wide variety of meanings under the political and confessional circumstances of the 16th – 18th centuries. This can be seen in chronicles, law, theological texts and apocrypha, but also in illuminated manuscripts and frescoes of the Last Judgment.
This paper explores the way written sources and frescoes defined and represented the sinner in the fire of damnation, taking into account the fact that these sources did not have well established criteria for defining the sinner. In a setting with a high religious otherness, the good Christian and the sinner were defined by their baptism and the way they lived their life within the Christian church. Therefore, as indicated in the references, the central place in the representation of Hell was held by two different groups of sinners: those inside and those outside the Christian church.
In the case of the first group, even if capturing a very rich inventory, the primary meaning, the core of the representation of sin, is reduced to avarice and greed as central sin. The conviction of this sin is accomplished through negative association of various social groups to the idea of greed. In this respect, the goal was to alert on how the sin undermines civic responsibility and social structure. Thus, the religious message is also targeted to the new social groups that raised too quickly by their occupations and practices.
In defining the second group, the concept of sinner is associated to the nonappurtenance to the right church. The two elements that enacted the appurtenance to the koine, to the righteous, were the baptism and the attachment to the formal worship, Jesus having, in this case, under his gaze, groups whose fate was decided by the one that the community deserved. Each one of them was guided by his own spiritual leader, the prince being responsible for the salvation of the Orthodox and not of those of other confessions.