In this issue, we look at hagiography, the medieval cult of saints, alchemy, visit Prague and visit del Escorial, Spain.
Holy people have been venerated in various forms by all religions and ideologies throughout history. Christianity is no exception with the development of the cults of saints beginning shortly after its formation.
The literature on medieval sainthood is substantial, rich and varied, but on one point it is almost unanimous: sexuality, and in particular virginity, was of far greater significance to female saints than to their male counterparts.
St Theodore ‘the recruit’ was one of the most important military saints of the Byzantine and wider medieval world, and his cult center, at Euchaïta in northern Turkey, was famous from the fifth century on.
A rare impressive, intact bronze ring from the Middle Ages, bearing the image of St. Nicholas, was discovered by chance during recent landscaping work in the garden of a home in the Jezreel Valley community of Moshav Yogev.
This dissertation examines the practice of taking relics on out-and-back journeys to explore the consequences of temporarily removing these objects from the churches in which they were housed and displayed.
A new radio carbon analysis of a relic claimed to be part of St. Nicholas’ pelvis suggests the bone could possibly be authentic.…
This thesis serves to examine the transmission of royal missionary saints between Norway and England during the eleventh and twelfth centuries, focused on the cult of St. Olav and the cult of St. Edmund.
This dissertation focuses on confraternal piety and poor relief in the northern Italian city of Cremona between the mid-fourteenth century and the end of the fifteenth century.
Cinema is not, of course, a medieval cultural form but its evolutionary trajectory can perhaps be seen as rooted in aspects of medieval material culture, particularly the plastic arts, manuscript illumination and printing and the performing arts, particularly religious drama with its propensity for movement.
By Danièle Cybulskie This week, I read the story of Christine the Astonishing for the first time (in Medieval Writings on Female Spirituality,…
By Susan Abernethy Eadburh, daughter of King Edward the Elder and grand-daughter of King Alfred the Great, was dedicated to the Nunnaminster at…
By Susan Abernethy Jeanne de Valois was the daughter, sister, and wife of kings. She was born with disabilities and suffered through a…
According to hagiographers, (C)Katherine was a princess, the daughter of Roman governor named Constus. She was well educated, beautiful and highly intelligent. She converted to Christianity at the age of 13 or 14 and caught the eye of the Roman Emperor, Maxentius (278-318 AD).
Despite the centrality of monastic sources to debates about social and political transformation in post-Carolingian Europe, few studies have approached the political and economic status of monasteries and their saints’ cults in this context, to which this thesis offers a comparative approach.
Saints’ cults played a crucial role in medieval society. Although we know very little about the beliefs and rituals of the indigenous peoples of Livonia, either before or after the thirteenth-century conquest, we may assume that the process of Christianization must have caused major changes in their religious practices.
The extraordinary story ofthe Ghent relics was first told by Oswald Holder- Egger in an article published in 1886. During his work on part two of volume 15 of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica Scriptores series, which Holder- Egger had just finished, he had come across the hagiographie literature produced at the abbeys of St Baafs and St Pieters in Ghent.
The chance of dying in pregnancy or childbirth was very real for medieval women, and still is in many Third World countries. In Medieval Catholic Western Europe, including Scandinavia, these risks, and the absence of medically schooled persons who could give efficient help, led many women to turn to the saints for intercession.
In honour of the day, it seems fitting to throw out some interesting facts about St. Patrick, Ireland’s patron saint.
The earliest extended treatment of the legend of the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus in a
western vernacular language is the anonymous Old English prose version preserved
in British Library MS Cotton Julius E vii…
This article gives an overview of the features, choices, tastes and models of sanctity characteristic of Italian hagiography, against the background of local contexts and political competition.
This essay explores two parallel trajectories of mythic retrospection: medieval “myths” of the Biblical past (like Birgitta’s prophetic visions), and modern “myths” of the medieval past (like Kristeva’s survey).
This paper examines part of that future: late medieval and early modern Gaelic Irish devotion to the early Christian martyrs as evidenced in the vernacular manuscript tradition.
In the middle of the ninth century, at the monastery of Dol in Brittany, the Life of the sixth-century saint Samson was rewritten. The rewriter evidently perceived a defi- ciency in the existing Life of St Samson, and one that many modern historians would come to share: the fact that it had very little to say about Brittany.