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medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

Hi Cecelia,

I may be telling you something else that you already know, but I can't
resist sharing one of my favorite Medieval anecdotes about the efficacy of
prayer in warfare. Bede (HE 2:2) reports that monks from Bangor went into
the field to prayer for the British army that was about to fight against
Aethelfrith of Northumbria. Aethelfrith first attacked and slew the monks
before turning on and defeating the British troops. Bede tells this story
in the context of Augustine's disputes with the Celtic Church, so it may be
a bit tricky to unpack exactly what this reveals about Bede's beliefs on
the power of prayer.

Phil Feller

On Fri, Feb 3, 2012 at 8:15 AM, Cecilia Gaposchkin
<[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture
> Hello friends,
>
> I am working right now on issues around ritual and liturgical
> supplications to God ("clamours") and have come across a few explicit
> statements about the efficacy of prayer and supplication to God. This is
> the context of warfare, and (in the case I am thinking of, Honorius III)
> gives a long defense, with lots of references to the Old Testament, of how
> prayer can turn things around for armies.
>
> I want to follow this up. Does anyone know of bibliography around this
> issue, either about medieval discussions on the efficacy of
> prayer/liturgical supplication, or - even better, the efficacy in the
> context of war?
>
> Also, I'll throw this in, if anyone can point me to a contextual
> literature on penitential processions.  I have lots of references to the
> calling of penitential processions, but I'd love to get a sense of what
> prayers, litanies, psalms, and so forth, were actually prescribed/performed
> in these.  If anybody has either specific (medieval) examples, or a
> liturature that has looked into this, I'd love the reference.
>
> Thanks to all!
> cecilia
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