The legend of Saint Anastasia in medieval Spanish literature

The legend of Saint Anastasia in medieval Spanish literature

By Natalie Watkinson

Masters thesis, Durham University (2007)

Abstract: This MA by Research looks into the legend of Saint Anastasia, a virgin martyr who forms part of the Legenda aurea, a thirteenth century hagiographic compilation composed by Jacobus de Voragine. Chapter 1 offers an initial examination of the evolution of the legend, looking at Anastasia’s historical origin and the development of her passio from its original version through to that of Voragine. Chapter 2 presents Anastasia in the context of the other saints as they feature in the Legenda aurea, looking predominantly at three other saintly widows: Paula, Elizabeth of Hungary; and Cecilia. Chapter 3 offers a comparison of the three extant Spanish manuscript versions of Anastasia’s legend and assesses which are most closely linked. Chapter 4 in turn takes the resultant Spanish critical editions and analyses their similarity to the Latin legend as is presented in the Legenda aurea. It establishes which of the two the closer derivation of the Latin is. Chapter 5 examines in depth all the themes, images, and concepts presented in the Spanish critical editions. Through an observation of style, image, nuance, expression, and theme ш a linear analysis of the two Spanish critical editions, the chapter also looks at the ways in which these themes contribute to Anastasia’s passio. A final comparative analysis. Chapter 6, discusses the differences between Anastasia’s legend as it stands in Voragine and a later version of the legend as presented by Álvaro de Luna. Chapter 7 offers critical editions of the legend prefaced by a section on editorial norms. It also provides tentative conclusions.

Click here to read this thesis from Durham University

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