|Verlag||Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co.KG|
|Reihe||Frühe NeuzeitISSN 23|
In the latter half of the 16th century, a large number of flysheets were published proclaiming the occurrence of so-called miracle births. Interpreted as a sign of divine wrath, these miracle births stand in a long tradition of prophetic doom lore ranging back to Antiquity and used in the 16th century largely by Protestants. The study investigates the theological foundations underlying the range of interpretations applied to the monstra, the changing function of these interpretations in the course of the 16th century socio-political context and the place they occupy within the discourse of the time on natural history. With reference to imagination theory and the discussion on the power of witches there is also consideration of the significance of discourse on the monstra for the women of the period.