Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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(393 words)

Author(s): Binder, Hans-Otto
[German Version] Several legends trace the founding of the Italian secret society of the Carbonari (“Charcoal-burners”) back to antiquity. They made their first historical appearance in southern Italy in the Napoleonic period, c. 1807. Similarities in organization and ritual as well as personal connections suggest that they emerged from the Bons Cousins Charbonniers, an occupational organization established primarily in Burgundy and Franche-Comté. It was an initiatory s…


(285 words)

Author(s): Liverani, Mario
[German Version] The city on the Euphrates (modern Jerablus) was an important kingdom and commercial center during the time of Ebla (24th cent. bce) and Mari (18th cent. bce). From the 16th/14th centuries, Carchemish belonged to the Mitanni; c. 1350, Šuppiluliuma conquered the city. The local Hittite dynasty, then founded by Piyaššili, was entrusted with Syrian affairs, and Carchemish almost became independent (Ini-Tešub, c. 1240–1220) gaining the title “Great Kingdom,” dominating the Euphrates …


(395 words)

Author(s): Krämer, Peter
[German Version] Derived from cardo (hinge, pivot point), the term cardinalate originally referred to an institution of the clergy in the city of Rome. Already in the 11th century, three classifications had formed: cardinal deacons, who were responsible to assist the bishop of Rome in liturgical ministry, care for the poor, and administer property; cardinal priests, who, as the heads of Roman titular churches, were responsible for liturgical ministry in the five patri¶ archal churches; and cardinal bishops, who, as bishops of the dioceses situated around Rome …

Cardinals, Congregation of

(8 words)

[German Version] Congregations

Cardinal Virtues

(7 words)

[German Version] Virtues

Cardoso, Mattheus

(399 words)

Author(s): Hastings, Adrian
[German Version] (1584, Lisbon – 1625, São Salvador, Congo) entered the Jesuit novitiate in 1598. Following his studies, ordination, and a number of years as lecturer in the Jesuit college at Evora, he was sent to Angola in 1617 and taught there at the college of Luanda. In the year 1619, Cordoso spent nine months in the Kongo Kingdom in the company of Friar Duarte Vaz. He drew up plans to open a college in the capital, Mbanza Kongo (São Salvador), and translated a stan…


(24 words)

[German Version] Deaf and Hearing Impaired, Care of the; Dying, Care of the; Poor, Care of the; Sick, Care of the

Carey, William

(390 words)

Author(s): Stanley, Brian
[German Version] (Aug 17, 1761, Paulerspury, England – Jun 9, 1834, Serampore, India) is often regarded as the father of modern Protestant missions. As the principal founder of the Baptist Missionary Society (BMS) he pioneered a movement which led to the formation of similar evangelical missionary societies in Great Britain, Europe, and North America. His own missionary vision was much indebted to the earlier achievements of the Moravians (Bohemian and Moravian Brethren…

Cargo Cults

(356 words)

Author(s): Lindstrom, Lamont
[German Version] The term “cargo cult” first appeared in the November 1945 issue of the colonial news magazine Pacific Islands Monthly. Anthropologists and others seized upon the term to label religious movements that emerged in the post-war years, notably in the southwestern Pacific region of Melanesia during a period of rapid economical and political change. Some observers classified cargo cults as a Pacific variant of the universal millenarian (Millenarianism) movements which t…


(1,395 words)

Author(s): Lampe, Armando
[German Version] For historical reasons, the Caribbean is described as the region that encompasses the archipelago of the greater and lesser Antilles, Belize and the Guyanas. It comprises a surface area of 599, 276 km2. The population numbers 33,791,000. The majority of the population is black or mulatto, stemming from African slaves who mixed with European conquerors. After the arrival of the Spaniards in 1492, “the great death” affected the original inhabitants of the islands, who fell victim to violence o…

Caribbean Conference of Churches

(164 words)

Author(s): Lampe, Armando
[German Version] (CCC) was founded in 1973 by 18 churches in Kingston, Jamaica. The CCC became the first ecumenical institution in the world, with the Roman Catholic Church as one of its founding members. The other Churches are: the Anglican Church, Baptists, Methodists, Orthodox Churches, Reformed Churches, Lutherans, Bohemian and Moravian Brethren, Presbyterians, and the Salvation Army. The CCC was the result of a process of closer cooperat…

Carissimi, Giacomo

(163 words)

Author(s): Cassaro, James P.
[German Version] (baptized Apr 18, 1605, Marini, died Jan 12, 1674, Rome), Italian composer, the first major composer of oratorios. In 1628, Carissimi was appointed director of music at Assisi, and soon moved on to Rome as director of music at the Collegium Germanicum et Hungaricum, a position he held for life. He was ordained priest in 1637. Among his students were Alessandro Scarlatti and Marc-Antoine Charpentier. Carissimi's most important oratorios include Jephte, Jonas, Baltazar, and ¶ Judicium extremum. In addition, Carissimi composed hundreds of motets, mass…


(1,551 words)

Author(s): Kaiser, Jochen-Christoph
[German Version] I. Establishment – II. History – III. Current Situation I. Establishment 1. Founders. The notion of caritas as social assistance to those in need deriving from a sense of Christian responsibility has existed as long as the church itself. However, the organizational unification of such efforts beyond the boundaries of the dioceses and without exclusive ties to the socio-charitable religious orders is a modern phenomenon, which did not emerge within Catholicism until…

Carl, Johann Samuel

(205 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Hans
[German Version] (1676?; baptized Aug 16, 1677, Öhringen/county of Hohenlohe – Jun 13, 1757, Meldorf/Holstein), doctor and radical pietist. The son of a pharmacist and already influenced by Pietism in his formative years, he became the doctor in his home town after studying medicine in Halle (pupil of Georg Ernst Stahl) and Strasbourg. Deported because of his radical pietistic activities, Carl found positions as ¶ a personal physician at the courts of pietistic high nobility in Büdingen (1708–1728), Berleburg (1728–1736) and Copenhagen (1736–175…


(7 words)

[German Version] Sremski Karlovci

Carlyle, Thomas

(526 words)

Author(s): Erlebach, Peter
[German Version] (Dec 4, 1795, Ecclefechan, Scotland – Feb 5, 1881, London), critic of contemporary civilization and literary figure of tremendous reputation, the most important representative of idealistic (Idealism) thinking of the 19th century in England, influenced by Puritanism (Puritans/Puritanism), who protested against utilitarianism, materialism, the predatory competition of the industrial age and the general lack of intellectual culture in humank…


(510 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The Carmelite Order goes back to a community of occidental hermits on Mount Carmel, who were granted a rule by the patriarch of Jerusalem in 1210. It obligated them to a strict contemplative life. The spirituality of the community, led by a prior, was marked by anachoretic traditions, the example of the prophet Elijah, and veneration of the Virgin Mary. In 1240, the Carmelites fled before the growing threat of the Saracens into their European homelands, where …

Carmel Mission

(91 words)

Author(s): Schäfer, Klaus
[German Version] A missionary society founded in 1904 by J. Seitz in Palestine to evangelize German emigrants, Jews, and Muslims. The mission to Muslims soon predominated, and today it characterizes the work of the Carmel Mission. It is based on an evangelically oriented theology of mission: it is active in many countries in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, in which evangelistic and diaconal missionary programs are implemented. The society's headquarters is in Schondorf, Württemberg (Germany). Klaus Schäfer Bibliography Journal: Mission in der Welt des Islam, 1912ff. (bi-month…

Carmel, Mount

(281 words)

Author(s): Lehmann, Gunnar
[German Version] (Heb. כַּרְמֶל, “fruit garden, orchard”), limestone and chalk mountain range in northern Palestine, up to 552m high, to the south of the tribe of Asher (Josh 19:26; Tribes of Israel). The OT praises the mountain's beauty (Isa 35:2). In the 3rd and 2nd millennia bce, it is referred to in Egyptian sources as “nose of a gazelle,” and later as “holy head,” probably alluding to a sanctuary. On the Carmel, the Canaanite-Phoenician ¶ god Baal was worshiped, who is equated with Zeus in Ps.-Skylax, Periplus 104 (4th cent. bce), according to Tacitus Hist. 78.3 and Suet. Vesp. 5.6 call…

Carnap, Rudolf

(169 words)

Author(s): Willaschek, Marcus
[German Version] (May 18, 1891, Ronsdorf – Sep 14, 1970, Santa Monica, CA), a major proponent of the philosophy of logical positivism or empiricism. After studying physics, mathematics, and philosophy (1910–1914), he earned his doctorate from Jena in 1921 with a philosophical dissertation on space. In 1926 he joined the Vienna Circle, a group seeking to use the tools of modern logic to formulate a “scientific world view” based on empiricism. Metaphysics and religion were rejected as empirically untestable and hence meaningless. In 1928 Carnap published his magnum opus, Der logische …
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