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10 Cool Facts about Saint Catherine

Saint Catherine of Alexandria and her wheel have been well recognized symbols since the beginning of the Middle Ages. Here are 10 interesting tidbits about Saint Catherine:

Christians in the amphitheater? The ‘Christianization’ of spectacle buildings and martyrial memory

This article presents an overview of the archaeological evidence for Christian spaces inside spectacle buildings – stadia, hippodromes, theaters and amphitheaters.

The Medieval Saints of Sweden and Denmark

There is a clear link between the celebration of native saints and the ecclesiastical organisation that emerged in Scandinavia in the 12th century. Yet, according to a new doctoral thesis in history from the University of Gothenburg, important differences can be noted between Sweden and Denmark.

Which Irish Saint Are You?

Brendan, Columba, Patrick – find out which Irish Saint you are most like!

The Life of St. Sabas the Younger as a Source for The History of the Catalan Grand Company

A piece of Byzantine hagiography from the fourteenth century which, in spite of its religious character, is a valuable source for the history of the Catalan Grand Company, Roger de Flor’s famous band of Spanish mercenaries hired by the Byzantine emperor Andronikos II Palaiologos (1282-1328) to fight the Turks in Anatolia.

A Viking Pacifist? The Life of St Magnus in Saga, Novel, and Opera

Vikings settled in, and ruled, many parts of the British Isles and Ireland, but of these areas only the Norse earldom of Orkney has a whole Icelandic saga devoted to its early history.

A Hagiographical Reading of Egils saga

When the literary presentation of the character of Egill is examined carefully with an eye toward the hagiographical paradigm, one can see that it matches the presentation of a bishop’s life and character…

The Original Placement of the Hereford Map

This paper relies on new masonry and dendrochronological evidence and the system of medieval ecclesiastical preferments to argue that this monumental world map was originally exhibited in 1287 next to the first shrine of St Thomas Cantilupe in Hereford Cathedral’s north transept.

Shaping a Saint’s Identity: The Imagery of Thomas Becket in Medieval Italy

This article sets out to trace the visual responses to the sainthood of Thomas of Canterbury outside of his original cultural context, namely in Italy, where his cult was readily received, integrated and modified.

Worthy of Veneration or Skepticism?: How Europeans Regarded Relics During Medieval and Renaissance Europe

Relics and reliquaries were prevalent in renaissance and reformation Europe until certain theologians began to question the validity, practicality, and true purposes of relics. These theologians emphasized an individual’s faith in God rather than faith in relics, which in turn resulted in a renaissance movement away from reliance on relics.

The Bones of St. Cuthbert: Defining a Saint’s Cult in Medieval Northumbria

This paper investigates the social, political, and religious changes and tensions which surrounded the cult of St. Cuthbert in medieval Northumbria. Specific comparisons are made between the Anglo-Saxon and Norman periods in English history, and how St. Cuthbert’s cult responded to the Norman Conquest in 1066.

Transvestites in the Middle Ages

An examination of the lives of the transvestite saints whose legends and myths help set Western attitudes toward transvestism.

Ten Medieval Saints You May Not Have Heard of

Sometimes overshadowed, sometimes eccentric, and perhaps a little unbelievable – here are ten medieval saints you should know more about.

Soldier saints and holy warriors: Warfare and sanctity in Anglo-Saxon England

This study examines hagiographers’ changing literary tropes as subtle but important reflections of medieval Christianity’s evolution from rejecting the sword to tolerating and even wielding it. H

The Saint’s Play in Medieval England

Plays about saints—their lives, martyrdoms, and miracles—flourished in England for more than three centuries side-by-side with the Corpus Christi cycles.

The Horror of Saints, Slashers, and Virgins

In our modern world, the repression of sexuality is still prevalent, although it is better masked than it was in the Middle Ages, and we still use the image of women and virginity to terrorize or save.

Painful Pleasure: Saintly Torture on the Verge of Pornography

Within female hagiographical narratives, stimulating, pornographic and often sadistic endeavours can be detected, gendering the tortured body parts such as tongue, teeth or the breast and thus supporting the development of (negative) erotic phantasies.

What a Bunch of Tools: Zombie Saints and Their Use Within Medieval Communities

This thesis focuses on this phenomenon through the scope of the living dead saints of the Middle Ages, concentrating directly on instances of undead saints found in the most widely disseminated, read, and recounted collection of saints lives of the time, The Golden Legend.

Irish Hagiographical Lives in the Twelfth Century: Church Reform before the Anglo-Norman Invasion

In order to further disentangle the reality and fiction of this view of culture versus barbarity and of reform versus wickedness, I shall analyse twelfth-century Irish vitae.

Silk Tunics of Saint Ambrose to be restored and studied

Archaeologists from the University of Bonn, working with restorers, are preserving and studying 4th-century tunics ascribed to St. Ambrose. In the course of examining these valuable silk garments, they have made surprising scholarly discoveries regarding the development of early relic worship.

Amending the Ascetic: Community and Character in the Old English Life of St. Mary of Egypt

Among the most eligible saints for such treatment, Mary of Egypt deserves particular consideration: her popularity is evidenced by over a hundred extant Greek manuscripts of her Life and her uniquely prominent position in the Lenten liturgical cycle in the Eastern Church.

The influence of the Bible on Medieval Women’s Literacy

The image of Saint Anne, who teaches Virgin Mary to read, suggests the feminine culture of the medieval Christian tradition, in which mothers have the mission to educate their girls.

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