IMC 2007: Sessions

Session 719: The Sacred City: Earthly and Celestial Sites of Sanctity in Anglo-Saxon Literature

Tuesday 10 July 2007, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York
Organiser:Christine Phillips, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York
Moderator/Chair:Gabriella Corona, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York
Paper 719-aFighting for the Heavenly City: Psychomachia and Psychology in Cynewulf's Juliana
(Language: English)
Alexandra Ramsden, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Philosophy
Paper 719-bBuilding the Heavenly City: Almsgiving and the Forgiveness of Sin in the Anglo-Saxon Homilies
(Language: English)
Aleisha Olson, Department of History, University of York
Paper 719-cEntering the Heavenly City: The Martyrdom of St Agnes in Aldhelm's De uirginitate
(Language: English)
Christine Phillips, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York
Index terms: Hagiography, Language and Literature - Latin, Monasticism
Abstract

The session seeks to explore Anglo-Saxon literary concepts of sacred place in terms of both physical and spiritual urban settings. A variety of approaches will be employed in order to investigate the roles which both the image and the idea of the city played in the Christian Anglo-Saxon imagination. The session will consider the function of saints’ shrines on earth and the manner in which the soul sought the heavenly city; the interplay between heavenly and earthly cities and how sacred urban sites were perceived to act as gateways between the mortal and divine realms; and ways in which physical manifestations of holiness contribute to the construction of local and national identity.