medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture
Today (16. June) is the feast day of:
1) Ferreolus and Ferrutius (d. 211 or 212, supposedly). F. and F. (in French, Ferréol et Ferjeux/Fargeau), priest and deacon, are legendarily the apostles of Besançon. According to their Passio (BHL 2903, etc.) they were Greek-speakers from somewhere in the East who had studied at Athens and who had been converted to Christianity by St. Polycarp of Smyrna. Having transferred to Lyon, they were sent out as missionaries by St. Irenaeus of that city and spent thirty years evangelizing in Besançon and vicinity until they were martyred by a prefect of Gallia Sequana unhappy over their conversion of his wife. During their torture F. and F. continued to pray audibly after their tongues had been cut out.
The cult of F. and F. is widely disseminated in Franche-Comté. It was already well established by 556, when St. Germanus of Paris is said to have erected in his church there an altar in their honor. A version of their Passio was known to St. Gregory of Tours as were also a reported Inventio of their remains at Besançon and their continued, wonder-working presence in a martyrial church in that city (_In gloria confessorum_, 70). Here they are as depicted in an earlier fifteenth-century (ca. 1414) breviary for the Use of Paris (Châteauroux, Bibliothèque municipale, ms. 2, fol. 193v):
2) Quiricus and Julitta (d. ca. 304, supposedly). We know nothing about the historical Q. (also Ciricus, Cyricus, Cirgues, Cirice, Cyr, Cricq, Querico, Chirico, Kerykos, Kirykos, Kirik, etc.) and J. (also Julietta, Julita, Ioulita, etc.), whose cult was already widespread in late antiquity and whose church in Rome, since rebuilt, goes back to the sixth century. They are the subject of legendary Acta in Latin (BHL 1801-1814), in Greek, and in Coptic, declared spurious in the so-called _Decretum Gelasianum_ of the early sixth century. These accounts make them Christians of Iconium martyred at Tarsus, with Q. a child or a youth slain in front of J., his mother, who is then tortured and put to death in her turn. In the versions most widely disseminated, Q. is a toddler who proclaims that he too is Christian, who physically attacks the official, and who, thrown down by the latter from his tribune, fatally smashes his head on the tribune's steps.
In the East Q. and J. are traditionally celebrated, in Catholic churches as well as in Orthodox ones, on 15. July. That is also where they appear on the earlier ninth-century Marble Calendar of Naples with its admixture of "eastern" and "western" feasts.
A few pictorial representations of Q. and J.:
a) Scenes from the Passio of Q. and J. are depicted in the eighth-century frescoes of the Chapel of Theodotus in Rome's Santa Maria Antiqua. Here's a view of one depicting their execution:
b) Q. and J. as depicted in the later twelfth-century mosaics of the cathedral of Santa Maria la Nuova at Monreale:
c) Q. and J. as depicted in the earlier fourteenth-century frescoes (ca. 1313-ca. 1320) of the King's Church (dedicated to Sts. Joachim and Anne) at Gračanica in, depending on your view of the matter, either the Republic of Kosovo or Serbia's province of Kosovo and Metohija, with Q. portrayed as a young man rather than as a boy:
Q. (misidentified in the accompanying text -- but not in the painting itself -- as Cyril):
d) The martyrdom of Q. and J. as depicted in an earlier fourteenth-century copy (betw. 1326 and 1350) of a French-language collection of saint's Lives (Paris, BnF, ms. Français 185, fol. 233v):
e) J. as depicted (at right) in Simone Martini's and Lippo Memmi's Annunciation Altarpiece (1333), now in the Galleria degli Uffizi in Florence:
f) Q. and J. as depicted in the earlier fourteenth-century frescoes (betw. 1335 and 1350) in the nave of the church of the Pantocrator at the Visoki Dečani monastery near Peć in, depending on one's view of the matter, either the Republic of Kosovo or Serbia's province of Kosovo and Metohija:
g) Two scenes from the Passio of Q. and J. as depicted in the earlier fourteenth-century frescoes (betw. 1335 and 1350) in the narthex of the church of the Pantocrator at the Visoki Dečani monastery near Peć in, depending on one's view of the matter, either the Republic of Kosovo or Serbia's province of Kosovo and Metohija:
h) Q. and J. before the magistrate at Tarsus as depicted in an earlier fourteenth-century copy (1348) of the _Legenda aurea_ in its French-language version by Jean de Vignay (Paris, BnF, ms. Français 241, fol. 139r):
i) The martyrdom of Q. and J. as depicted in a later fifteenth-century copy (1463) of Vincent of Beauvais' _Speculum historiale_ in its French-language version by Jean de Vignay (Paris, BnF, ms. Français 51, fol. 10r):
j) Scenes from these saints' Passio as depicted in a set of predella panels by Borghese di Piero (1427-63), now in the Courtauld Gallery in London:
k) J. and C. as depicted (at left) in a painting by Verrocchio (Andrea di Cione, 1435-88) of the Baptism of Christ, now in the Galleria degli Uffizi in Florence:
l) J. as depicted in a late fifteenth- or sixteenth-century fresco in the church of Agios Kirykos and Agia Ioulitta at Veria/Beroia in Greece's Imathia prefecture:
m) Q. and J. as depicted in a fresco from 1502 in the Museum of Dionisy's Frescoes in the former St. Ferapont Belozero (Ferapontov Belozersky) Monastery at Ferapontovo in Russia's Vologda Region:
A few dedications to Q. and J. (sometimes omitting J., at least in common parlance; many replacing recorded earlier churches of the same dedication):
a) The cathedral of Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Julitte at Nevers (Nièvre) in Bourgogne claims to have relics of Q. and J. Herewith a few views:
A set of views:
b) An illustrated, Italian-language page on the mostly eleventh-/twelfth-century chiesa di San Quirico in Petroio at Capannori (LU) in Tuscany:
c) The originally twelfth-century parrocchiale dei Santi Quirico e Giulitta at Capannori (LU) in Tuscany:
d) The originally late twelfth-century église Saint-Cirgues at Andelat (Cantal) in Auvergne :
e) The originally twelfth- and thirteenth-century collegiata dei Santi Quirico e Giulitta at San Quirico d’Orcia (SI) in Tuscany:
f) The originally twelfth-/thirteenth-century église Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Juliette at Saint-Cyr-les-Champagnes (Dordogne) in Aquitaine:
g) The originally thirteenth-century église Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Julitte at Pomerols (Hérault) in Languedoc-Roussillon:
h) The originally fifteenth-century église Saint-Cirgues at Saint-Cirgues (Haute-Loire) in Auvergne:
The Structurae page of views:
i) The originally fifteenth-century église Saint-Cyr at Saint-Cirgues-la-Loutre (Corrèze) in the Limousin:
j) The originally fifteenth-century church of St Cyr and St Julitta in Newton St Cyres (Devon), restored from 1914 to 1921. The text in the first of these has been misapplied from a description of St Cyriac and St Julitta in Swaffham Prior (Cambs):
k) An illustrated, English-language page on the church of St Cyriac and St Julitta in Swaffham Prior (Cambs), with an expandable view of its fifteenth-century tower terminating in a polygonal lantern:
l) Some expandable views of the very largely fifteenth-century church of St Cyriacus and St Julitta at Luxulyan in Bodmin (Cornwall) are here:
An English-language page on this church:
m) The largely late fifteenth-century église Saint-Cyr, Sainte-Julitte at Saint-Cyr-la-Roche (Corrèze) in the Limousin:
A T-shirt honoring Q. and J. (in this case, Julitta and Cerycos) is available. Here's how you can obtain yours:
3) Aureus, Justina, and companions (d. 415, perhaps). A., J., etc. are martyrs of Mainz, said to have been killed by invading Huns. According to St. Rabanus Maurus, A. was the city's bishop and J. was his sister. Their relics, said to have been rediscovered in the eighth century, were venerated at Mainz' monastery church of St. Alban (A. of Mainz, of course), the burial place of the city's bishops prior to the completion of the cathedral of St. Martin (early form) in the earlier eleventh century. A., J., and companions have a Passio (BHL 823-24), a Miracle collection (BHL 825) by the eleventh-century Goswin of Mainz, and a thirteenth(?)-century Passio, Inventio, et Translatio (826).
4) Ceccardus of Luni (?). C. (also Cechardus) is the patron saint of Carrara (MS) in Tuscany, for whose marble works -- much older than the town itself -- Luna (now Luni) was anciently the port. Our earliest source for him is an inscription on the Renaissance altar in Carrara's cathedral containing his remains; this calls him a bishop of Luni and martyr and dates his death to the year 600. As we know that in 600 the bishop of Luna was someone named Venantius and as Ceccardus is a Lombard name, unlikely in a bishop of a town that then was still East Roman, the date on the inscription is erroneous. Though the altar may have replaced some earlier inscription, there is no proof of that.
Possibly earlier was the now lost Office for C. at Carrara, from which the early seventeenth-century hagiographer Filippo Ferrari deduced that this saint has been martyred by locals whom he had reprimanded for their immorality. The early Bollandist Papebroch, unable to find Ferrari's source, thought C. more likely to be the bishop reported to have been slain in the destructive ninth-century raid by Norsemen, now dated to ca. 860, when Luna had dwindled to being only a very small town. C. is said to have been canonized ca. 1630 by a decree of Urban VIII.
5) Palerius of Telese (?). Today's less well known saint of the Regno is a supposed bishop of today's Telese (BV) in one part of Campania venerated medievally only at today's San Martino Valle Caudina (AV) in another part of the same Italian region.
We have no attested names for any of Telese's bishops between 601 and 1068. Our very limited evidence for P.'s actual human existence comes from one of two twelfth-century inscriptions reportedly discovered in 1712 in the ruins of San Martino's earthquake-destroyed (and previously abandoned) church of San Palerio. According to these texts, this was the resting place of the bodies of the holy Palerius bishop of Telese and of his colleague, the deacon Equitius, revealed by P. (in a vision, presumably) in 1164 to a notary named Marandus, who then built on his property a rural church honoring them and who in 1167 got the bishop of Avellino to consecrate the church and to grant a forty days' indulgence to those who visited it on the anniversary of this consecration.
Human remains presumed from their location to be of those the two saints were also discovered on the site and were soon pronounced authentic by a synod of the diocese of Benevento presided over by a cardinal who later became pope Benedict XIII. In 1795 the saints' cult was confirmed for the dioceses of Benevento and of Telese-Cerreto, with P.'s feast fixed for today (the anniversary of the Inventio of 1712) and E.'s for 18. June. P. and E. have never graced the pages of the RM. In 2000 the archbishop of Amalfi - Cava de' Tirreni dedicated a chapel to them in their present church at San Martino Valle Caudina (there's another in the town's principal church of San Giovanni Battista).
6) Benno of Meißen (d. 1106). The Hildesheim-educated Benno was ordained priest at the ago of thirty. A scion of the Saxon nobility, he became a canon at Goslar and, in 1066, bishop of Meißen. His refusal to join Henry IV's war against the Saxons together with his support for the pope in the Investiture Conflict caused his imprisonment for a year starting in 1075. Ten years later Henry ousted Benno from his see altogether, installing a replacement of his own choosing. B., who spent his exile evangelizing among the Wends, returned unopposed in 1088. In 1097 he again supported the pope of the Reform party (Urban II).
Meißen's ex-cathedral of Sts. John and Donatus was begun between 1240 and 1260. In about 1270 B. was translated to an ornate sepulchre there (destroyed in 1539):
Miracles at B.'s tomb were reported starting in 1285. He was canonized in 1523. B.'s relics are said to have survived the events of 1539, to have been transported later in the same century to Munich, and to have reposed there since 1580 in the Frauenkirche. The cathedral of Dresden has what is called his mitre:
7) Lutgardis (d. 1246). The Flemish mystic L. (also Liutgardis, Liutgarda), a native of Tongeren/Tongres, has an immediately posthumous Vita (BHL 4949v) and another, only slightly later, by the learned Dominican Thomas de Cantimpré (BHL 4950). She is said to have entered a Benedictine convent at perhaps the age of twelve and to have left it for the more austere Cistercian house at Aywieres, where despite her difficulties with the French language she became famous as a visionary, healer, and spiritual advisor. For the last eleven years of her life she was blind.
(last year's post revised)
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