The early modern iconographic representations of St. Clare of Assisi (1193–1253) often show her carrying the monstrance with the Eucharist. This act refers to the episode of September 1240, when the Saracen mercenaries of Emperor Federick II attacked the unprotected small monastery of the Poor Ladies of San Damiano. The weak and sick Clare is often portrayed as lifting up the monstrance while standing at the dormitory door and striking the Saracen troops below with the brilliance of the Eucharist.
In recent years, Anne Askew has attained something of celebrity status among scholars of Tudor women’s writing and, more generally, of Tudor Reformation history. In the course of privileging Askew’s examinations above those of other female defendants (such as Elizabeth Young), scholars sometimes equate Askew’s rhetorical expertise with legal expertise. Thus, it has been argued that Askew knew the latest developments in Tudor legislation and used this knowledge to her advantage during her examinations. Was Askew aware of legal reforms?
This article demonstrates the continuities that persist between early modern English accounts of Jerusalem and pilgrim narratives. Despite Reformed theology's denial of holiness inherent in the physical world, Protestant travelers in the generations after the Reformation relate the traditional pilgrim reaction of prayerful joy in the time-honored places, bring home relics, and record the dimensions of the holiest places, just as pilgrims always had.
When new editions of the writings of Paracelsus (1493– 1541) were published in the early 1560s, this “Paracelsian revival” provoked among the erudite a heated debate about the advantages and disadvantages of his medical system that found its culmination in 1571 with the first volume of Thomas Erastus’s (1524– 83) Disputationum de medicina nova Paracelsi. Erastus conceded openly that his book was mainly intended as part of his religious campaign against heresy and sorcery.
This article argues that Thomas Gataker put the concept of superstition to innovative and analytic use in the aftermath of the Reformation. Gataker enjoyed a long career as a respected cleric within the London Puritan community and after 1642 was a prominent figure within the Presbyterian party. In 1619 he published Of the Nature and Vse of Lots. To explain why games of chance in contrast to judicial astrology were a legitimate use of lots, Gataker addressed a number of related issues— contingency and providence, causation, divination, and superstition.
This article examines the highly unusual iconography in a drawing of the mystic and stigmatic Suor Domenica da Paradiso (1473– 1553) as alter Christus. A Dominican tertiary from a lower- class background and influenced by Savonarola, Suor Domenica founded and built the convent of La Crocetta in Florence in 1511. Probably drawn by her confessor, Francesco da Castiglione (1466–1542), Suor Domenica is depicted displaying her stigmata while in the midst of a vision of the crucified Christ, shown opposite her on the page, affxed with four nails to a Y- shaped cross.