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Vanitas with her mirror. Painting by Titian, c. 1515

The seven deadly sins, also known as the capital vices or cardinal sins, are a classification of vices used in early Christian teachings to educate and protect followers from (immoral) fallen man's tendency to sin. The Roman Catholic Church divides sin into two types: venial (forgiven through any sacramental) and capital or mortal (meaning they kill the life of grace and risk eternal damnation unless absolved in the sacrament of confession, or taken away by a perfect contrition). Beginning in the early 14th century, the popularity of the seven deadly sins with artists of the time ingrained them in human culture around the world.

Listed in the same order used by both Pope Gregory the Great in the 6th Century AD and Dante Alighieri, the seven deadly sins are as follows: luxuria (extravagance, later lust), gula (gluttony), avaritia (avarice/greed), acedia (sloth), ira (wrath), invidia (envy), and superbia (pride/hubris). Each deadly sin is opposed by one of the corresponding Seven Holy Virtues.