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date: 13 November 2019


  • Nigel J. Morgan


In the Roman Catholic Church, the devotion to the 15 Mysteries, the prayers of which are often counted on a string of beads, also referred to as a rosary. The name may derive from the fact that the beads are sometimes carved with roses. The form of the devotional prayers became standardized in the 15th century and is still used in the late 20th century. It consists of meditations on 15 episodes in the life of Christ and the Virgin, comprising three cycles, or chaplets: the Joyful Mysteries (the Annunciation, the Visitation, the Nativity, the Presentation in the Temple and the Finding of the Christ Child in the Temple), the Sorrowful Mysteries (the Agony in the Garden, the Flagellation, the Crowning with Thorns, the Road to Calvary and the Crucifixion), and the Glorious Mysteries (the Resurrection, the Ascension, the Descent of the Holy Ghost, the Assumption of the Virgin and the Coronation of the Virgin). The devotion begins with the recitation of the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, three Hail Marys and the ...

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Lexikon der christlichen Ikonographie (Rome, 1968–)