Religion Past and Present

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[German Version]

I. Concept

Revenge as a form of compensation provides a model for social behavior. Religions interpret it and extend the concept to relationships between human beings and gods as well as between the living and the dead.

Religions vary in their assessment of revenge. They can consider it a legitimate form of justice (talion in tribal societies, the notion of revenge in the OT, as in Gen 4:23f.) or as an unethical mode of conduct to be overcome (Buddhism; Matt 6:12)…

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Beinhauer-Köhler, Bärbel, Zenger, Erich and Volkmann, Stefan, “Revenge”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 22 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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