Today, 8 September, is the feast of ...
* the Birthday of Mary the Virgin
- feast first mentioned in the West c. 600, in the Auxerre
*Hieronymianum*; for legends of her birthplace, see *Analecta
Bollandiana* 62 (1944) 272-273
Two years ago Tom Izbicki added the following:
General celebration of the feast of the Conception of Mary seems to have
been authorized late in the MA. What I read about the feast tags its
general celebration to Sixtus IV, after a failed effort by the Council
of Basel to define the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception following its
break with Eugenius IV.
Tallon says in his book on the French at Trent that the French
delegation gave up its efforts to get a dogmatic pronouncement made by
In relation to the the feast of the Nativity of the Virgin A year ago a
thread was started regarding queries about the cult of St Anne. At that
time interesting bibliographical materials and other items were sent to
the list. They follow below:
LOUIS, C., ed., The Commonplace Book of Robert Reynes of Acle. An
Edition of Tanner MS 407 (New York and London 1980).
PARKER, R.E., ed., The Middle English Stanziac Versions of the Life of
St Anne (EETS London 1928).
BRANDENBARG, T., 'St Anne and her family. The veneration of St Anne
in connection with concepts of marriage and family in the early modern
period', SION C.H.H. and VAN DER WILDEN, R.M.J., trans, Saints and
She-Devils. Images of Women in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries
(London 1987), 101-128.
GIBSON, G.McM., 'Saint Anne and the religion of childbed. Some East
Anglian texts and talismans', in ASHLEY, K. and SHEINGORN, P., eds,
Interpreting Cultural Symbols - St Anne in late Medieval Society
(Athens, Georgia 1990), 95-110.
SHEINGORN, P.M., 'The wise mother: The image of St Anne teaching the
Virgin Mary', Gesta, 32 (1993), 69-80.
DUFFY, E., 'Holy maydens, holy wyfes: The cult of women saints in
fifteenth and sixteenth-century England', in Women and the Church,
ed.D.Wood, Studies in Church History, 27 (Oxford 1990), 175-96.
JAMES, M.R., 'The Salomites', The Journal of Theological Studies, 35
*Interpreting Cultural Symbols: Saint Anne in Late Medieval Society*, ed.
Kathleen Ashley and Pamela Sheingorn (Univ. of Georgia Press, 1990).
And the query:
Any idea on how Anne got her name? -- Perhaps form the aramaic for
And the answer of Bill East:
Hebrew Hannah - cf the mother of Samuel in the books of that name. Mary's
Magnificat would seem to owe something to Hannah's song of joy at the birth
* Adrian and Natalia, martyrs (c. 304)
- Adrian was a pagan officer moved to convert when he witnessed
the torture of 23 Christians; his wife Natalia, to spare her husband
having to see others being killed, actually helped the executioners
carry out their task; she took away his severed hand as a relic, and
travelled to the Christian community in Argyropolis, where she died a
* Eusebius, Nestabus, Zeno and Nestor, martyrs (c. 362)
- the first three were brothers, and Nestor was a fellow Christian
martyred in Gaza; all were made famous by the brothers' relative, also
named Zeno, when he eventually was made bishop in the reign of
* Disibod (c. 674)
- an Irish bishop, he went to Germany where he founded a monastery
on a hill near Bingen; his vita was written by St Hildegard, based on
* Sergius I, pope (701)
- after Sergius was elected as pope, the imperial exarch John
extorted a huge sum of money from him; as pope, he ordained that the
Roman church should observe the four feasts of Mary, including her
birthday (which is today -- coincidence?)
* Corbinian, bishop (725)
- early apostle of Bavaria; one day when he met a woman accused of
being a magician, he 'unsympathetically' stole her provisions and beat
her soundly with his own hands; no wonder his hagiographer Aribo says
that Corbinian was a man quick to anger
Three years ago Rozann Elder also reminded us of the following feast
8 September is also the anniversary of the death, and therefore the
liturgical commemoration, in those rare places where he is commemorated
(theoretically the archdiocese of Reims and the Cistercian Order) of
William of Saint Thierry, Benedictine abbot until 1135 and Cistercian
until his death in 1147/1148. This demonstrates the bad luck of dying on
a feast day.
Dr Carolyn Muessig
Department of Theology and Religious Studies
University of Bristol
Bristol BS8 1TB