IMC 2008: Sessions

Session 704: Sacred Voices

Tuesday 8 July 2008, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:Department of German Studies, University of Newcastle
Organiser:Henrike Lähnemann, School of Modern Languages, Newcastle University
Moderator/Chair:Sabine Schmolinsky, Seminar für Geschichtswissenschaft, Helmut Schmidt-Universität, Hamburg
Paper 704-aIntertextuality in Hagiography
(Language: English)
Elizabeth A. Andersen, School of Modern Languages, Newcastle University
Index terms: Hagiography, Language and Literature - German, Religious Life, Women's Studies
Paper 704-bA Database for the Sacred Voices
(Language: English)
Andres Laubinger, School of Modern Languages, Newcastle University
Index terms: Computing in Medieval Studies, Language and Literature - German, Language and Literature - Latin, Manuscripts and Palaeography
Paper 704-cSacred Voices and Voices of Nature
(Language: English)
Henrike Lähnemann, School of Modern Languages, Newcastle University
Index terms: Art History - Decorative Arts, Language and Literature - German, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Music
Abstract

‘Sacred Voices’ is a new research focus in medieval German Studies at Newcastle. One major project is the development of a database of the prayer-books from Medingen convent. These manuscripts feature a unique mixture of Latin liturgical elements and meditations, hymns, and songs in both Latin and Low German. In the marginal illuminations angels, animals, nuns and lay-people are shown with ‘song-bubbles’ voicing their joy. The background for this text production can be found in Northern German mysticism and authors like Mechthild of Magdeburg. She also provides the bridge to hagiographical literature, like Dietrich of Apolda’s Life of Saint Elizabeth. The ‘sacred voices’ as a concept behind the Medingen nuns and the earlier writing of the Northern German mystics helps to understand the intertextual nature of later medieval devotional text production.