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De Profundis | Study Guide

Oscar Wilde

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De Profundis | Glossary


agnosticism: a philosophical or spiritual position exemplified by uncertainty about the existence of a deity

Aramaic: a Semitic language used since ancient times in areas of the Middle East

beadle: a low-ranking church official who assists with church functions

chrism: specially consecrated oil used for baptisms and other rites in Greek and Latin churches

gaol: an alternate spelling of jail used chiefly in British contexts

Pharisee: a person belonging to a strict Jewish sect in ancient times

Philistinism: a philosophical position ignoring or rejecting intellectual and artistic values in favor of material or crude pleasures

pillory: a device used for public punishment or shame, made of a wooden frame with holes for locking the head and hands in place

publican: a Jewish tax collector in the ancient Roman empire

Sabbatarianism: a doctrine stressing strict observance of the Sabbath or holy days

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