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IMC 2006: Sessions

Session 1007: Exploring Apostolicity: Apostolic Traditions in Medieval France

Wednesday 12 July 2006, 09.00-10.30

Organiser:Samantha Kahn Herrick, Department of History, Syracuse University, New York
Moderator/Chair:Samantha Kahn Herrick, Department of History, Syracuse University, New York
Paper 1007-a'As Apostles, Yet Above the Apostles': 12th-Century Ideas of Mary Magdalene's Apostolicity
(Language: English)
Susan Valentine, New York University
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Hagiography, Religious Life
Paper 1007-bSearching for Apostolic Saints: How Bernard Gui Brought SS Martial, Veronica, and Amadour to Southern France (again)
(Language: English)
Bethanie Petersen, Department of History, University of California, Santa Barbara
Index terms: Hagiography, Lay Piety, Local History
Paper 1007-cGuibert of Nogent and the Apostolic Foundation of the Abbey of Nogent
(Language: English)
Heather Blurton, Department of English UC Santa Barbara SANTA BARBARA CA 93106-3170
Index terms: Hagiography, Monasticism

Medieval France abounded in hagiography, presenting its local saints as apostles and, conversely, claiming universal and (arguably) apostolic saints as local figures. This session examines apostolic traditions in medieval France from both sides: papers will consider both local saints whom their promoters transformed into apostles, and also universal saints whom regional traditions claimed as local figures. In both cases, these 'apostles' brought parts of France into the span of New Testament history. Together, the papers will contribute to our understanding of both the problematic concept of apostolicity and its significance in medieval France.

Abstract paper -c: In the middle of his 'autobiography', Guibert of Nogent gives a bizarre history of the apostolic foundation of his abbey of Nogent. As he recounts the story, the British King Quilius, struck by a conviction that his pagan religion was insufficient, makes a pilgrimage to Jerusalem where he lives for a while with the Virgin Mary and the Apostles before returning to Europe and dying at Nogent. The importance of the apostolic foundation of Nogent is most commonly attributed to Guibert's famous aversion to relics of the saints. This paper, however, will seek instead to situate the story of King Quilius in the tradition of the importance of the apostles to high medieval French thought. Specifically, it will focus on the theorisation of apostolic authority in the aftermath of the Investiture Controversy. Guibert, after all, has a mini-investiture controversy of his own, which briefly forces him from office, and which causes him to rethink his own conception of abbatial authority. Highlighting the importance of the apostles in his history of Nogent, therefore, casts new light on the way in which Guibert understands the story of his life.