Religious language is a variation of standard language used in the area of human religious life, consequently, in expressions referring to sacrum (transcendental reality).
Religious language can be analyzed in its particular and broader sense. In the former one, it concerns sacrum directly, while in the latter one, it refers to any talk about the phenomenon of religion and related phenomena (e.g. organizations serving religious life). Religious language in its particular sense includes the one of theology, homily and catechesis, as well as the one of cult (liturgy, sacraments and prayer) and the one of testimony of religious experiences.
Religious expressions in the particular sense characterize with the unique function, absent in other speech acts, (namely, they serve participation in sacrum), and with other features, like e.g. the unique sender-recipient relation, formulaic character of prayers accompanied by simultaneous involvement of the praying person.
The Article raises the issues of formation of Biblisms in 16th-century Polish, understood as single or phrasal lexical units of Biblical origin, though functioning in general language in metaphorical meanings. Assuming that Biblisms were introduced into general language not only by the so-called canonical translations of the Bible, the author considers also spreading the research area on free translations, including postils, as crucial for historical-linguistic analyses. The first part deals with terminological and theoretical issues, associated with functioning of Biblisms in Polish. The latter part of the article analyzes examples of various units, considered by the author as potential Biblisms. The lexical material comes from the first part of phototypic edition of Postil (1566).
This is a description of equivalents of contemporary Biblical phrases. The author studies a few types of units: motives working as literary allusions (kamienie wołać będzie – %he will call stones’), mottoes, exposing quotations characteristic for a particular Gospel (e.g. Jam jest głos wołający na puszczy – %I am a voice calling in the wood’, etc.), units functioning as phrases być ciało z ciała, krew z (czyjejś) krwie – %be flesh from flesh, blood from (somebody else’s) blood’ (undergo contamination, occur in the metaphorical meaning). Besides, the article includes an analysis of units, which, though similar to contemporary Biblisms, function in primary meanings in Postil by Rej.
There are also units of Biblical origin which used to be Biblisms in the 16th century, though nowadays, they have disappeared or have become replaced by other units (licemiernik – faryzeusz – %Pharisee’).
The article raises the issue of romantic dialogue of with Christian heritage exemplified by Towianism. Andrzej Towiański, its founder, communicated his believers the need of religious enthusiasm, able to transform the world. Metamorphism, then, is the key word in the article. It reveals itself in expanding the Christian symbol of cross onto two contrary signs: the black cross and the white cross.
The former one symbolizes God’s dispensation, i.e. fate sent on the man. It is, according to Towiański, something unwanted, because it is opposed to the white cross. The latter one is a symbol of being chosen %marked in the Bible’, i.e. by Christ for a hero.
In the article, the author tries to prove Towiański’s contradiction to religious archetypes, which shows Towiański’s critical approach towards Catholicism as a theory spread by the Church. The aim of the paper is to reveal relation between vocabulary and ideas of the epoch in which it was used.