John Donne's Devotions

by John Donne


This volume of John Donne's writings begins with a biography of John Donne's life, as told by Donne's writer friend, Izaak Walton. Walton gives readers a close look at Donne's past, which was plagued with the loss of many close family members. This biographical information helps readers to make better sense of the somber devotions contained in this volume. In his Devotions upon Emergent Occasions, Donne concentrates on the miserable condition of man and the inevitability of death. The devotions are all structured the same, each beginning with a meditation followed by an expostulation and a prayer. These devotions serve as a preview for Donne's "Death's Duel Sermon," written near his death in 1631 as his funeral sermon. While "Death's Duel" paints a grave picture of earthly life tormented by pain and death, it hopes for a bright future in God's love through Christ's resurrection and ascension. Praised for his literary talent, Donna provides Christians with an introspective look at the nature of morality. It is from the great works in this collection that we find the origin of well-known phrases "For whom the bell tolls" and "No man is an island."

Emmalon Davis
CCEL Staff Writer

About John Donne

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Picture of John Donne
Picture of John Donne
Source: Wikipedia
Born: January 22, 1572
Died: March 31, 1631
Related topics: English poetry--Early modern, England, Criticism, interpretation, etc., Donne, John,--1572-1631, Church of England, …
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