This Halloween marks our third anniversary, and we ring in our fourth year with two versions of King Arthur’s famous battle with the man-eating giant of Mont St. Michel.
- Cohen, Jeffrey Jerome. Of Giants: Sex, Monsters, and the Middle Ages. Medieval Cultures, vol. 17, U of Minnesota P, 1999.
- Finlayson, John. “Arthur and the Giant of St. Michael’s Mount.” Medium Aevum, vol. 33 no. 2, 1964, pp. 112-120.
- Huot, Sylvia. Outsiders The Humanity and Inhumanity of Giants in Medieval French Prose Romance. U of Notre Dame P, 2016.
- Owen, D.D.R. The Wandering Giant in Literature: From Polyphemus to Papageno. Tuckwell Press, 2003.
Image: Source image of the Abbey of Mont St. Michel (via Wikimedia Commons), filtered through Google’s Deep Dream Generator.
This episode we (that is, I) wax autobiographical as we look at our first saga text, an account of the death of King Magnus Barefoot during his attempted conquest of Ireland in 1103. Also, there are some thoughts on the idea of the progress of literary technique.
- Snorre Sturluson. The Heimskringla, or The Sagas of the Norse Kings. Translated by Samuel Laing, revised with notes by Rasmus B. Anderson, vol. 4, John C. Nimmo, 1889. Available at Google Books.
Image: Wooden statue of Magnus Barefoot in Tannaghmore Gardens, Craigavon, Northern Ireland. Photo by P Flannagan, via Wikimedia Commons.
This episode we crack open the Chronicle of Man and the Sudreys
to look at the Isle of Man and the rise of the royal house of King Orry, Godred Crovan, and King Magnus Barefoot of Norway is warned in a dream to leave Norway and never return.
- Kinvig, R.H. The Isle of Man: A Social, Cultural, and Political History. Charles E. Tuttle, 1975.
Image: Coat of Arms of the Isle of Man (via Wikimedia Commons)
Today we plunge into some hard-core scholasticism, as we hear Thomas Aquinas wrestle with the thorny question: “If all dead bodies are resurrected at the Last Judgment, what happens to the bodies of cannibals, whose bodies are made up of the flesh of those they have eaten, who also need to be resurrected?” We also wrap up with a reflection on George Romero and the zombie apocalypse.
- Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologia, Supplement, Q. 80, Art. 4. Available at http://www.newadvent.org/summa/5080.htm#article4, which reproduces the text of the Second and Revised Edition, 1920, literally translated by Fathers of the English Dominican Province.
- Bynum, Caroline Walker. Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the Human Body in Medieval Religion. Zone Books, 1992.
- Murphy, James Jerome. Rhetoric in the Middle Ages: A History of Rhetorical Theory from Saint Augustine to the Renaissance, University of California Press, 1974.
Image: Detail from Manuscrito Valenciennes BM MS 320, f. 45.
We conclude our three-part look at the remains of St. Cuthbert with James Raine’s account of his 1827 exhumation of Cuthbert’s body and the recovery of some extraordinary early medieval artifacts.
Raine, James. A Brief Account of Durham Cathedral, with Notices of the Castle, University, City Churches, &c.
Newcastle: Blackwell & Co., 1833. Google Books
. Web. 6 Apr, 2016. [Available at Google Books
Raine, James. St. Cuthbert, with an Account of the State in Which His Remains Were Found upon the Opening of His Tomb in Durham Cathedral, in the Year MDCCCXXVII
. Geo. Andrews, 1828. [Available at Google Books
- Battiscombe, C.F., editor. The Relics of Saint Cuthbert. Oxford UP, 1956.
- Reginald of Durham. Reginaldi Monachi Dunelmensis Libellus de Admirandis Beati Cuthberti Virtutibus Quae Novellis Patratae Sunt Temporibus, edited by James Raine, publication of the Surtees Society, J.B. Nichols and Son, 1835. [Available at Archive.org.]
Image: Portrait of James Raine by William Walker (National Portrait Gallery, London – via Wikimedia Commons).
In Part II of our “Cuthbert’s Body” series, we hear Reginald of Durham’s description of what was found inside Cuthbert’s coffin in the investigation preceding the Cuthbert’s translation in 1104, and we consider what incorruptibility meant for a medieval audience.
This Episode’s Texts:
- Selections from Reginald of Durham. Translated by James Raine, St. Cuthbert, with an Account of the State in Which His Remains Were Found upon the Opening of His Tomb in Durham Cathedral, in the Year MDCCCXXVII. Geo. Andrews, 1828. [Available at Google Books.]
Battiscombe, C.F., editor. The Relics of Saint Cuthbert. Oxford UP, 1956.
Bynum, Caroline Walker. Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the Human Body in Medieval Religion. Zone Books, 1992.
Image: Detail from Cuthbert’s maniple, recovered in 1827, depicting Peter the Deacon.