medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

Dear Linda,

The image/notion of the torcular crucis or torcular Christi evolved from
Isaia 63,2s. (quare ergo rubrum est indumentum tuum et vestimenta tua sicut
calcantium in torculari / torcular calcavi solus et de gentibus non est vir
mecum calcavi eos in furore meo et conculcavi eos in ira mea et aspersus
est sanguis eorum super vestimenta mea et omnia indumenta mea inquinavi),
combined with passages like Cantica 1,3 and Apocalypse 14,8 and the "uva"
or "botrus" carried by the messengers of Nm 13,24s., applied also in the
exegesis of the inscription "pro torcularibus" of Psalms 8, 80 and 83. On
the level of the typological sense, referring to the history of Christ and
the Church, the torcular was figure of the passion, whereas the moral sense
was referred to the tribulations to be suffered by the soul following
Christ, or to the punishment to be suffered by the wicked.

As an impressive poetic example see Abelard's Hymns "Quadrigae Christi
vehiculum" and "Torcular crux est dominica" (PL 178,1806, crit. ed. Joseph
Szo"ve/rffy, _Peter Abelard's Hymnarius Paraclitensis_, vol. II, Berlin /
Leyden, 1980, no.93-94).

The spiritual understandings of the "torcular" are more or less ubiquitous
in exegetical treatments of biblical passages with "torcular", but I cannot
refer you to a specific exegetical source (although there probably are
commentaries or sermons that deal more extensively with these notions). As
modern studies, I can quote the following:

    Les symboles chre/tiens primitifs. Paris 1961
    [engl. Primitive Christian Symbols, tr. Donald Attwater,
    London: Burns and Oates, 1964, esp. p.36-36]
    Die Darstellung Christi in der Kelter. Du"sseldorf 1935

Best regards,


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