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Bell, Book and Candle.

Expression referring to symbolic actions formerly used in excommunication: shutting the pontifical book after pronouncing the curse, extinguishing a candle, and tolling the bell as for the dead. “Bell, book and candle - candle, book and bell, forward and backward to curse Faustus to hell” (C. Marlowe, Doctor Faustus). Agreement of the ceremony, the 1st instance of which is ca. 1190, with canon law has been questioned.


Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

Internet Version Produced by
The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod


Original Editions ©Copyright 1954, 1975, 2000
Concordia Publishing House
All rights reserved.

Content Reproduced with Permission

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