Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(2,096 words)

1. Introduction

Dignity (Latin dignitas, French dignité, German Würde) was a cardinal principle of the early modern society of the estates. It expressed political and social claims to power in a particular manner. In the first place, dignity denoted the special status of humanity as the image of God in creation, but it also regulated relationships between people. From the Middle Ages, a pronounced dignity attached to institutions that se…

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Eckert, Georg, “Dignity”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 26 September 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_030623>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170626

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