The literary and linguistic expression of the Hispano-Jewish tombstones reveals a beautiful and poetic universe that sustains an interesting epigraphic memory. Commemorating a wider culture shares some figures of the memory anchored to the traditional legacy of Israel. Reading the verses of the tombstones poems allows us to perceive that every rhetorical and intertextual strategy used by the anonymous poets pursues to sew on some poems of dignity and praise not only the mourning about some important names of the epigraphic characters but the social, historical and cultural references of the Jewish community in the Middle Ages.
The holiday of Purim functions as a unique event in the Jewish calendar. Unlike other holidays, during Purim some of the typical, stricter demands of the Jewish law are replaced with a light and jolly attitude. Its nature turned Purim into a magnet for textual expressions that were considered inappropriate in the ‘traditional’ Jewish religious lifestyle. One of Purim’s typical artistic expressions was the parody of canonical, sacred texts. This lecture will examine the basic characteristics of the sub-genre of the medieval parodies for Purim, focusing on the complex relations between parody, humour, and ritual, and the texts’ functions in the late Middle Ages and the early modern period.
The purpose of the paper is to present the project of the Virtual Museum of Sefarad (www.sefaradvirtual.com), which approaches simultaneously two thriving areas: medieval archaeology of Sefarad and digital humanities. Thus, the paper will consist of two parts. Firstly, it will expose the results of the research in progress into the material remains proceeding from Jewish quarters (juderías) of Tudela and Estella in Navarre (Northern Spain), part of which forms the virtual collection. Secondly, it will discuss the possibilities that a virtual museum offers as a tool of preservation and dissemination of the memory of medieval past.