Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

The Saint between Manuscript and Print: Italy 1400-1600

Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

The Saint between Manuscript and Print: Italy 1400-1600

Article excerpt

The Saint between Manuscript and Print: Italy 1400-1600. Edited by Alison K. Frazier. [Essays and Studies, 37.] (Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies. 2015. Pp. 495. $49.95 paperback. ISBN 978-0-7727-2182-5.)

This publication has been in the making for some time. It originates from a 2008 seminar at the American Academy in Rome; however, the result is a well thought-out, very coherent, exceedingly useful reference work on saints' cults in Italy from 1400 to 1600-a period of changing, multiple media. A number of these essays should be recommended reading for undergraduate and graduate students, and not just for students and scholars of hagiography. Unlike many books with meaningless, wide-embracing titles, this volume offers more than the parts it sets out to explore.

This collection contains new evidence on the use of different media for the spread of the cults of St. Catherine of Siena, St. Alberto of Trapani, St. Filippo Benizzi, St. Nicholas of Tolentino, St. Bernardino of Siena, St. Vincent Ferrer, St. Lucy, St. Roch, Simon of Trent, Honoratus of Lérins, Girolamo Savonarola, St. Caterina Vigri, St. Veronica da Binasco, Arcangela Panigarola, and Blessed Lucia of Narni, as well as an exceptionally lucid approach to the study of printed martyrologies and a look at the market for inexpensive hagiographical prints. Above all, this is a methodologically important volume: some essays are exemplary for the study of the transmission of texts through different periods. The authors' evidence encompasses manuscripts, prints, artworks, documents, texts, images, and bookseller inventories and prices-official and popular, true and believed to be. …

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