Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Saints in Iceland: Their Veneration from the Conversion to 1400

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Saints in Iceland: Their Veneration from the Conversion to 1400

Article excerpt

Margaret Cormack, The Saints in Iceland: Their Veneration from the Conversion to i4oo, Subsidia Hagiographica 78 (Brussels: Societe des Bollandistes, I994). xiv + 2g6 pp. ISBN 2-87365-oo6-o. B. Fr. ; 3100..

With a Preface by Peter Foote of exemplary clarity, beautifully produced and a model of thoroughness, this first volume of a projected two-volume study of the cult of the saints in Iceland from the Conversion to the Reformation will be invaluable to anyone working in the field of early Icelandic religious history. Margaret Cormack gives a clear and detailed account of the emergence of the structures of the Icelandic Church as an institution, going on to outline the relative importance of fasts, vows, votive offerings, the celebration of feasts, and the composition, and translation into the vernacular, of saints' lives. The introductory section is aimed at those who are unfamiliar with the peculiarities of medieval Icelandic society and its Church; the material is shrewdly and cautiously analysed. …

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