Jo-Ann McNamara <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>...But, Yes, I think there might be some hint of some
sort of female clergy in the 8th=12th centuries.
Good Lord, where??
[he said, evincing astonishment, not incredulity --much
less (gasp) "scorn."]
"clergy", as in "priest"?
or is the operative phrase "some sort"?
(perspicacious of you to leave yourself an escape hatch.)
>The canonesses often seem to have some attachment to a
i believe that the only women i've ever come across
(doesn't mean much) "attached" to a "Cathdral" have
(a) a "Vidamess" (_vicedomina_) of Chartres, who is
styled thus in the early 12th c. She *may* have held
this office (Chief Vassal of the Bishop) after the death
of her husband and during the minority of her daughter,
which, _ex officio_ implied a seat in the chapter. Or,
she may have simply been styled that in the charters
(and elsewhere, e.g. Orderic Vital) out of courtesy,
because she was the widow of the deceased Vidame.
(2) a certain late 11th c. "recluse" (i forget the
precise latin word) who apparently lived in (or on?)
the collegial church of St. Martin of Pontoise
(Bx. Hildeburge, of Gallardon [near Chartres], i believe
was her name). Her short _vita_ was published by J. Depoin, in his edition of
the cartulary of that abbey.
there are, btw, several nice little stone vaulted
"rooms" above the side aisles of the cathedral of Chartres
whose purpose has never been really explained, to my
knowledge. for utilitarian use (like for storing
tools, etc. of the guys working on the roof from time to time), surely, but
they were certainly big enough to live in, if one
was into a somewhat frugal lifestyle.)
any other examples of "reclusae" living on churches known
>Unhappily there seem to be lots of tunnels with no
light at the end and I am left only with the sense that
we don't know a lot of what we may have thought we knew.
a pretty reasonable summary of the situation, i'd say.
best to all from here
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