The Brill Dictionary of Religion

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Kocku von Stuckrad

The impressively comprehensive Brill Dictionary of Religion (BDR) Online addresses religion as an element of daily life and public discourse, is richly illustrated and with more than 500 entries, the Brill Dictionary of Religion Online is a multi-media reference source on the many and various forms of religious commitment. The Brill Dictionary of Religion Online addresses the different theologies and doctrinal declarations of the official institutionalized religions and gives equal weight and consideration to a multiplicity of other religious phenomena. The Brill Dictionary of Religion Online helps map out and define the networks and connections created by various religions in contemporary societies, and provides models for understanding these complex phenomena.

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Joan of Arc

(1,347 words)

Author(s): Hartmann, Stefan
Life Story 1. Joan of Arc, the ‘Maid of Orleans,’ was born the daughter of a well-to-do farmer in Lotharingian Domrémy, on the Meuse. January 6, 1412 is indicated as her birthday. From the age of thirteen, she heard the ‘voices’ of Michael the Archangel, Saint Margaret, and Saint Catherine of Siena, from whom beginning in 1427 she received the political task of intervening in the Hundred Years' War between France and England, and liberating the country from the English troops. Joan forced her way …

Joke (Religious)

(2,892 words)

Author(s): Holzapfel, Kirsten
Word and Concept 1. The word ‘joke,’ like ‘jocund,’ or ‘jocular’ is from the Latin jocus, meaning a game or joke. A synonym for ‘joke,’ namely, ‘witticism,’ as well as words such as ‘witty,’ ‘witness,’ and the word ‘wit’ itself—meaning both attentive intelligence (‘keeping your wits about you’), and cleverness at humor—come from the Old English wit, meaning ‘know,’ as that word survives in the legalese ‘to wit’ (‘i.e.,’), and are akin to ‘wise,’ ‘wizard,’ and other words and expressions in various languages, denoting or connoting knowing. The joke is one of the simple literary for…


(4,175 words)

Author(s): Krochmalnik, Daniel
1. Jews in the world: There are about 13,000,000 Jews in the world. In most countries outside of Israel, they are a small, vanishing minority. Their quantitative representation, however, is scarcely proportionate to their qualitative importance. In their own self-concept, the Jewish people are the ‘whirlwind of world history’; nor are they alone in this estimate. One need only pick up the paper, or glance at a TV guide, to measure the importance of the Jewish theme. Anti-Semites are so obsessed with…

Judaism: Festal Cycle

(328 words)

Author(s): Bültmann, Dirk
The Year • The Jewish year consists either of 12 months ( shana pshuta, “common year,”—lit., “simple year”), occurring 7 times in a cycle of 19 years, or else of 13 months ( shana me‘ubbret, “intercalation year”—lit., “pregnant year”), in which case there is a second month, Adar ( Adar sheni). • The calendar year begins with the month of Tishri, the holiday cycle with the month of Nisan. The Month • Jewish months have either 30 ( male, “full-numbered”) or 25 days ( chaser, “faulty,” “deficient”). Only (Mar-) Cheshvan and Kislev can be both full-numbered (and then the entire year is reckoned as shl…

Judaism: Time Chart

(2,846 words)

The Babylonian Exile (597–538 BCE) 597/586 BCE First and second capture of Jerusalem Beginning of the “Babylonian Exile” Deportation to Babylon of a part of the upper class of Jerusalem and Juda; preservation in Exile of faith in God; Torah, Sabbath, and circumcision; beginning of the polarity between the Land of Israel and the → Diaspora, lasting up to today. The period of the Second Temple (538 BCE–70 CE) 538 Edict of the Achaemenid Cyrus II The original Aramaic composition of Ezra 6:3–5 governs the financing of the construction of the Temple. The Hebrew “proclamation” (ibid.…