||In heaven, we will meet our friends: this was one of the most conspicuous expectations Christians had, and continue to have, of life after death. While the theme as such is almost as old as Christianity, it came to flourish only in early-modern times, peaking in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. This book explores how the rediscovery and developemnt of the 'meeting again' theme by authors such as John Bunyan and Emanuel Swedenborg and by the artist William Blake created a specifically modern heaven. Giving priority to an eternity of continuing earthly passions and family ties, the modern notion of heaven contrasts with earlier, God-centred notions of an eternal saintly solitude spent contemplating God in 'beatific vision'."--Cover, p. 4.