Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 30767
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Grössinger , Christa
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Tutivillus
  • Source: Profane Images in Marginal Arts of the Middle Ages.  Edited by Elaine C. Block, Frederic Billiet, Sylvie Bethmont-Gallerand and Paul Hardwick.  Brepols Publishers, 2009.  Pages 47 - 62.
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  • Article Type: Essay
  • Subject (See Also): Waiting to be Indexed
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  • Abstract: First mentioned in the thirteenth-century exempla of Jacques de Vitry, Tutivillus is one of the demons whose domain is the choir; here he listens for and records the idle talk and thoughts not only of priests but particularly of women associa - ted with the deadly sin of Sloth. Then he presents his list of sinners to God on the Day of Judgment, thus catching souls for Hell. Tutivillus’s counterpart is an angel, not as busy as the devil observing the thoughts of the pious. Tutivillus is very popular on English misericords as he tempts women to gossip and then notes their chatter. Women were first included by Robert Mannyng of Brunne in his Handlyng Synne, and often the list is so long that the scroll has to be stretched. On a misericord in Ludlow parish church the infamous ayle-wife is delivered to Hell with the aid of the scribbling Tutivillus. Not only is this theme found on woodwork, stained glass, and wall-paintings, but also in plays such as the Towneley Doom Play or the Book of the Knight by Geoffrey de la Tour-Landry.
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  • Year of Publication: 2009.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 9782503515991
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