The concept of magic

Authored by: David L. d’Avray

The Routledge History of Medieval Magic

Print publication date:  February  2019
Online publication date:  February  2019

Print ISBN: 9781472447302
eBook ISBN: 9781315613192
Adobe ISBN:


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This paper focuses on “emic” and “etic” concepts of magic: the “emic” concepts of the medieval people we are studying, and the “etic” concepts we, the students of medieval magic, create to help us get a grip on medieval concepts and practices. The paper attempts to add something to understanding of the medieval, “emic” concepts, but I argue that “etic” concepts too are needed to clear our heads about medieval magic.

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