SPIRITUAL VEGETATION: Vegetal Nature in Religious Contexts
Across Medieval and Early Modern Europe

Plants have been seen as aesthetic objects and as visual codes shaping communication processes, yet plants can also be understood as dynamic subjects or agents of crossover, transition, transformation, and transgression. We invite papers from perspectives that demonstrate the transformative, transient, and transgressive aspects of plants and trees. We are interested in their roles in medieval and early modern religious literature, painting, sculpture, and music, as well as in exegesis and cult, in botany and philosophy. This volume will focus on plant life in Christian contexts as well as aspects of ancient Greek and Roman traditions that were passed on to the medieval and early modern eras.

Article submissions are invited on (but not limited to) the following thematic areas:

  • Paradisiacal or infernal vegetation
  • Plants in earthly and celestial settings
  • Spatiality and temporality: plants and trees as settings, borders, markers, and narrative contexts
  • Conceptions of gardens or forests
  • Botanical bodies
  • Plants and religious ritual
  • Communication and interactions through plants
  • Plants and the emotions
  • Epistemic value of plants; taxonomic thought (e.g. tree diagrams)
  • Botany and natural histories
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