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Book Chapter

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angels, supernatural, legends, Paradise Lost, demonology


Angels have occupied a prominent role in world religions and Western culture for centuries. The existence of multiple supernatural beings with varying degrees of hierarchical standing was a given for the polytheistic cultures that represented the majority of religious expressions in the ancient world. The inclusion of these supernatural beings in the three great monotheistic faiths of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam was significant because these faiths sought in every way to emphasize the supremacy of the one God in contrast to the crowded spiritual field of polytheistic faiths. Angels could be problematic because they potentially provided a host of supernatural entities competing alongside the one God.


Chapter from edited book:

Culpepper, Scott. "No More Mr. Nice Angel: Angelic Ethics from the Ancient World through Paradise Lost to Supernatural." The Supernatural Revamped: From Timeworn Legends to Twenty-First-Century Chic. Edited by Barbara Brodman and James E. Doan. Madison: Farleigh Dickinson University Press, 2016. 19-33. ISBN: 9781611478662

Chapter reproduced by permission of Rowman & Littlefield

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Source Publication Title

The Supernatural Revamped


Rowman & Littlefield