(E–pub Free) Furta Sacra Thefts of Relics in the Central Middle Ages
Us St Nicholas of Myra
stolen from his tomb Anatolia and transported to a fledgling merchant town in Italy then read on Fascinating thoughtful and accessible consideration of accounts of relics thefts and the interplay between society and relics Geary did a good job taking a measured ook at the subject matter without giving into the anachronism and judgment Geary ooks at relic thefts in Western Europe between about 800 and 1100 seeking to categorise them but also to understand why they were carried out Comprehending the motives of relic thieves can be puzzling for a modern audience particularly when it comes to understanding why their actions were not automatically condemned In this slim clearly written book Geary does a good job at unpicking the rationalisations which were in vogue during this period of the Middle Ages Relics particularly those which were the bodies of saints
Was Stolen From His Tomb
were alive in some way subjects and not alive in some way subjects and not therefore if they were stolen it could only be because the saint had personally sanctioned it To say otherwise was to deny the relic s mighty power The stolen relics were used to provide a firm financial foundation for new monasteries to create communal prestige or to calm religious turmoil amongst other reasons There are perhaps places
where Geary could have expanded his analysis further or read his sources in depth but this is a Geary could have expanded his analysis further or read his sources in depth but this is a starting point An interesting book on an eccentric topic the theft of relics during the Central Middle Ages in Europe and how these thefts were tolerated by the Church After the Caro An excellent examination of the history of relic veneration and theft Some sections on individual monasteries histories and arguments over document dating were predictably dry but the theft accounts and Geary s religious political historical and symbolic analyses of relics and their importance were really uite fascinating if you re a nerd about this topic anyway which I am Clear brief and insightful accoun. For these acts asking how the relics were perceived and why the thefts met with the approval of medieval Christians. ,
Pure joy Catholics will both
laugh and cry Protestants will say I told you so book that kicked myand cry Protestants will say I told you so The book that my senior thesis into motion I ve spent many hours with it Found this while I was searching the shelves around here for something else and had to read it again The phenomenon itself is fascinating so it s worth a read just for the narratives of what amounted to the ritual kidnapping of saints My favorite story of relic theft reuired decades of contrivance and biding of one particular monk s time Seriously Why The story of the theft effectively created a break with the past and with the community in which the relics had resided especially since it was believed that saints could not be carried off against their own wills Through a theft another community could forge ties to a particular saint This was such effective creative memory not to mention the power of such stories for capturing the imagination of potential pilgrims that theft stories were often invented even when relics had been acuired by icit means Throughout the period between 800 and 1100 there developed a growing hagiographic tradition that claimed the translations of saints from one ocation to another by way of theft These strange accounts are the subject of Geary s project an examination that opens the way to further understanding of the power of relics and their role in medieval societyFor the most part the book has a specific range of time and texts with only the the introduction and chapter one describing the broad strokes of history surrounding them This is both a benefit and a detriment to the book On the one hand this attention allows for close study of the sources worthy of sustained discussion although as noted this extended discussion does not always do justice On the other hand background would allow for context in which to situate the particulars of this study Related to this issue Geary at times cites or even uotes established authorities such as the Bible Augustine. To obtain sacred relics medieval monks plundered tombs avaricious merchants raided churches and relic mongers scour. .
Gregory the Great Isidore and Bede in relation to his subjects but does not discuss the impact of these passages on medieval mindsets Sometimes these citations do not even provide concrete examples of the point being made Instead these passing references necessitate reading between the Going Berserk lines to find the implicationsGiven theimited scope of the project the close readings and analyses are also not as thorough as one might expect or hope For example in his use hagiography Geary emphasizes
the general similarities of the accounts rather than the divergent detailsgeneral similarities of the accounts rather the divergent details he is certainly correct that this is a broad topos of saints ives there is much to be gleaned from examining the ways in which iterary topoi are adapted for Come Hell or High Water: Feminism and the Legacy of Armed Conflict in Central America local variants There is certainly much on which could be expanded in this examinationFor a starting point to the world of saints relics and religious veneration in the early Middle Ages Geary does present a worthy study but for greater analysis and synthesis readers mustook elsewhere Undoubtedly this is a basic study for anyone interested in relics in the early Middle Ages and one of the great values of this book is the way in which it points toward the need and possibility for further work on the subject Patrick Geary was not rewarded with praise after this book first came out However it is a great book and fortunately has received respect since its first publication He shows how monks and the Christian Church knowingly stole relics and the reasons why they publication He shows how monks and the Christian Church knowingly stole relics and the reasons why they it This work is about a narrow subject though the analysis is uite illuminating for Western European medieval culture as a whole Geary attempts to understand the background motives and patterns around the translationtheft of saints relics Even better the book provides something of a prologue about relics themselves The study covers a hagiographic genre which could serve as a Autobiography and Other Writings lesson for today s historiography andor journalism If you want toearn how and why Santa Cla. Ed the Roman catacombs In a revised edition of Furta Sacra Patrick Geary considers the social and cultural context.