IMC 2019: Sessions

Session 1338: Vessels of the Spirit: Recluses, Reliquaries, and Architecture

Wednesday 3 July 2019, 16.30-18.00

Organiser:Sophie Alexandra Sawicka-Sykes, School of History, University of East Anglia
Moderator/Chair:Sophie Alexandra Sawicka-Sykes, School of History, University of East Anglia
Paper 1338-aThe Saint's Body as the Ark of the Covenant in Goscelin of St-Bertin's Vita et Translatio St Edithae
(Language: English)
Sophie Alexandra Sawicka-Sykes, School of History, University of East Anglia
Sophie Alexandra Sawicka-Sykes, School of History, University of East Anglia
Index terms: Hagiography, Language and Literature - Latin, Monasticism, Religious Life
Paper 1338-bCaskets, Purses, and Chests: The Shape of Anchoritism in Medieval England
(Language: English)
Michelle M. Sauer, Department of English, University of North Dakota
Michelle M. Sauer, Department of English, University of North Dakota
Index terms: Architecture - Religious, Monasticism, Religious Life
Paper 1338-cArchitecture and the Green World: Eco-Paradox in Scivias
(Language: English)
Natalie Grinnell, Department of English, Wofford College, South Carolina
Natalie Grinnell, Department of English, Wofford College, South Carolina
Index terms: Architecture - Religious, Language and Literature - Latin, Monasticism, Religious Life
Abstract

The symbolic significance of the cell as a womb, a tomb, and a gateway to heaven has been central to much critical discussion of reclusive spirituality in the Middle Ages. Yet the form of holy vessels – from the Ark of the Covenant to reliquaries to buildings of worship – and their place within the reclusive life merits further investigation. By considering these previously under-explored aspects of anchoritic materiality, the speakers in this session contribute to a more nuanced understanding of sacred space within the context of medieval reclusion. The session brings both historical and literary analysis to bear on a variety of texts, artefacts, and architectural pieces from across the Middle Ages.