Medieval Death Trip

A Podcast Exploring the Wit and Weirdness of Medieval Texts

Tag: Symeon of Durham

MDT Ep. 38: Concerning Men Afflicted by Snakes and Some Serpent-Lore

This episode we slither into spring with several tales of serpent shenanigans as well as science (or it’s medieval equivalent).

This Episode’s Texts:

  • Isidore of Seville. The Etymologies of Isidore of Seville. Translated by Stephen A. Barney, W.J. Lewis, J.A. Beach, and Oliver Berghof with Muriel Hall, Cambridge UP, 2006.
  • The Life and Miracles of St. William of Norwich, written by Thomas of Monmouth and translated by Augustus Jessopp and M.R. James. Cambridge UP, 1896. [Available on Google Books.]
  • Richard de Fournival. Master Richard’s Bestiary of Love and Response. Translated by Jeanette Beer, U of California P, 1986.
  • Simeon of Durham. Simeon’s History of the Church of Durham, Church Historians of England, edited and translated by Joseph Stevenson, vol. 3, part 2, Seeley’s, 1855, pp. 619-711. Google Books.
  • Symeon of Durham. Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius, hoc est Dunhelmensis, ecclesie: Tract on the Origin and Progress of this the Church of Durham. Edited and translated by David Rollason, Oxford UP, 2000.
  • Steele, Robert, editor. Medieval Lore from Bartholomew Anglicus, translated by John Trevisa, Alexander Moring, 1893/1905. Project Gutenberghttp://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/6493/pg6493.txt.

Image: Snake encounter and world map from the Intellivision game Advanced Dungeons and Dragons.

MDT Ep. 32: Election Special 2016!

Morgan Library MSS M.917, p. 180–M.945, f. 97r (Deep Dream Filtered)It’s Election Day in the U.S.A., and here’s a quick little tale of the election of an 11th-century bishop from Symeon of Durham to take our minds off of the horrible, horrible anxiety of the day!

This Episode’s Text:

Simeon of Durham. Simeon’s History of the Church of Durham. Trans. Joseph Stevenson. Church Historians of England. Vol. 3, pt. 2. London: Seeley’s, 1855. 619-711. [Available at Google Books.]

References:

  • Symeon of Durham. Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius, hoc est Dunhelmensis, ecclesie: Tract on the Origin and Progress of this the Church of Durham. Ed. and Trans. David Rollason. Oxford: OUP, 2000.
  • William of Malmesbury. Gesta Pontificum Anglorum: The History of the English Bishops. Vol. 1, edited and translated by M. Winterbottom with R.M. Thomson, Clarendon Press, 2007.

Image: Detail of a hellmouth from the Hours of Catherine of Cleves (ca. 1440), Morgan MSS M.917, f. 97r, as processed by the Deep Dream Generator.

MDT Episode 22: Concerning Elfred the Bone-Hunter

Tomb of Bede by Robert ScarthOn this episode, we look at a couple of diggers of relics: first, Elfred (or Aelfred or Alfred), who brought the relics of the Venerable Bede to Durham Cathedral; and second, antiquarian James Raine, who dug up those same relics in the early 19th century.

 

Images of the cast of the skull of Bede and its lovely, TARDIS-blue storage box.

 

References

  • Simeon of Durham. Simeon’s History of the Church of Durham. Trans. Joseph Stevenson. Church Historians of England. Vol. 3, pt. 2. London: Seeley’s, 1855. 619-711. Google Books.
  • Symeon of Durham. Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius, hoc est Dunhelmensis, ecclesie: Tract on the Origin and Progress of this the Church of Durham. Ed. and Trans. David Rollason. Oxford: OUP, 2000.
  • Geary, Patrick J. Furta Sacra: Thefts of Relics in the Central Middle Ages. Revised ed. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton UP, 1990.
  • Raine, James. A Brief Account of Durham Cathedral, with Notices of the Castle, University, City Churches, &c. Newcastle: Blackwell & Co., 1833. Google Books.
  • Story, Joanna, and Richard N. Bailey. “The Skull of Bede.” The Antiquaries Journal 95 (2015): 325-50.
  • Warner, Richard. A History of the Abbey of Glaston; and the Town of Glastonbury. Bath: Richard Cruttwell, 1826. Google Books.

Image

Photo of the present-day tomb of Bede, by Robert Scarth. Used under Creative Commons License (CC BY-SA 2.0)

MDT Episode 04: The Violent Death of Bishop Walcher

Episode 4, which continues the story of the murder of Bishop Walcher of Durham foreseen in our previous episode, is now available. Sorry for the bit of a delay in posting — finals week strikes, and I’m up to my eyeballs in grading, alas. So ’tis the season for a tale of murder and massacre.

This episode’s selection is from:

Symeon of Durham. Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius, hoc est Dunhelmensis, ecclesie: Tract on the Origin and Progress of this the Church of Durham. Ed. and Trans. David Rollason. Oxford: OUP, 2000.

Odo on the Bayeux TapestryImage: Odo of Bayeux rallies the troops at the Battle of Hastings, as depicted on the Bayeux Tapestry. Wikimedia Commons.

MDT Episode 03: Concerning a Vision of Heaven and Hell and a Bad Outlook for the Bishop

BL Royal 19 C I f. 33

First episode in a two-parter: we look at story from Symeon of Durham’s History of the Church of Durham involving a person who reawakens from apparent death to share a vision of the afterlife that portends bad things for the bishop of Durham.

 

This episode’s selection is from:

Symeon of Durham. Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius, hoc est Dunhelmensis, ecclesie: Tract on the Origin and Progress of this the Church of Durham. Ed. and Trans. David Rollason. Oxford: OUP, 2000.

Image: British Library, Royal 19 C I f. 33

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