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MEDIEVAL-RELIGION  February 2016

MEDIEVAL-RELIGION February 2016

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Subject:

Re: FEAST - A Saint for the Day (Feb. 4): St. Rabanus Maurus

From:

Bill Schipper <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

medieval-religion - Scholarly discussions of medieval religious culture <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 5 Feb 2016 18:37:20 -0330

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medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

John,

But Hrabanus was not canonized as far as I know, so he's not really a
"saint" is he? That said, I'm glad you noted his death date!

Bill

-----Original Message-----
From: medieval-religion - Scholarly discussions of medieval religious
culture [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of John Dillon
Sent: February 4, 2016 8:10 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [M-R] FEAST - A Saint for the Day (Feb. 4): St. Rabanus Maurus

medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

Rabanus -- sometimes written Germanically as _Hrabanus_ -- Maurus (d. 856)
was born in Mainz of noble Frankish parentage.  It is often thought that the
_Magnentius_ that forms part of his name in the manuscript tradition of his
works is an epithet signifying "of Mainz" (anciently _Moguntiacum_).  Early
in life he became a monk at Fulda, whence in 802 he was sent to Tours for
further study under Alcuin.  After a year he returned to Fulda, where
eventually he became head of the monastic school and then, in 822, abbot.
In the early 840s he resigned that office following an imperial regime
change and left Fulda.  In 847, having been reconciled to the rule of Louis
the German, Rabanus was named archbishop of Mainz.  In the following year he
presided over a synod in Mainz that condemned the teachings on
predestination of Gottschalk of Orbais, whose views Rabanus had for some
time been working to suppress.  In 850 he strove memorably to lessen the
effects of a severe famine.  Rabanus died in 856 and was buried in Mainz's
abbey of St. Alban (of Mainz).  We know about him from his own writings and
those of several contemporaries, including both his teacher Alcuin and his
student and successor at the school in Fulda, Rudolf.

The learned Rabanus is best known for his writings, especially the early
collection of figure poems _Liber sanctae crucis_, commentaries on many
books of the Bible, the encyclopedic _De rerum naturis_, and one form of the
hymn _Veni creator spiritus_.  Among his many other works is a martyrology.


Some period-pertinent images of St. Rabanus Maurus:

a) as depicted (at far right; at center, pope Gregory IV) in a presentation
illumination in a ninth-century copy of the _Liber sanctae crucis_ (Amiens,
Bibliothčques d'Amiens métropole, ms. 223, fol. 2v):
http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b8452181v/f8.item.zoom

b) as depicted (at far right; at center, pope Gregory IV) in a presentation
illumination in an earlier ninth-century copy of the _Liber sanctae crucis_
(Wien, ÖNB, Codex Vindobonensis 652, fol. 2r):
http://tinyurl.com/gukj6vr
http://tinyurl.com/huzmpzj

c) as depicted (at far left; supporting him, Alcuin; at right, archbishop
Otgar of Mainz) in a presentation illumination in an earlier ninth-century
copy of the _Liber sanctae crucis_ (Wien, ÖNB, Codex Vindobonensis 652, fol.
2v): 
http://tinyurl.com/z7emd92
http://tinyurl.com/zmzcqh4

d) as depicted (author portrait; kneeling before the Cross) in an early or
mid-ninth-century copy of the  _Liber sanctae crucis_  from either Fulda or
Mainz (Paris, BnF, ms. Latin 2422, fol. 29v):
http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b8490076p/f66.item.r=.zoom

e) as depicted (at far left; supporting him, Alcuin; at right, St. Martin of
Tours) in a presentation illumination in a mid-ninth-century copy of the
_Liber sanctae crucis_ (Cittā del Vaticano, BAV, cod. Reg. lat. 124, fol.
2v):
https://www.flickr.com/photos/28433765@N07/3417666175

f) as depicted (author portrait; kneeling before the Cross) in an early
eleventh-century copy of the  _Liber sanctae crucis_ (Bern,
Burgerbibliothek, Cod. 9, fol. 24v):
http://www.e-codices.unifr.ch/de/bbb/0009/24v

g) as depicted (at right; at left, Louis the German), at the prologue to
Ezekiel, in a later thirteenth-century bible from Paris (ca. 1250-1300; Den
Haag, KB, 76 F 23, fol. 231r):
http://manuscripts.kb.nl/zoom/BYVANCKB%3Amimi_76f23%3A231r_init

h) as portrayed in a later thirteenth-century portrait bust (ca. 1260-1270)
in the Bischöfliches Dom- und Diözesanmuseum, Mainz:
http://images.bistummainz.de/1/15/2/11386991212430992.jpg

i) as depicted in a hand-colored engraving in an early sixteenth-century
edition of the _Liber sanctae crucis_ in the Princeton University Library
(Pforzheim: Thomas Anshem, March 1503):
http://blogs.princeton.edu/graphicarts/rabanus%20maurus4.html

Best,
John Dillon
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