• Capita selecta in Historia Sacra. Head Relics in Counter Reformation Rome (ca. 1570–1630)
  • Language (written in): English
  • Author: Touber, Jetze
  • Editor: Santing, Catrien
  • Editor: Baert, Barbara
  • Editor: Traninger, Anita
  • Source: Disembodied Heads in Medieval and Early Modern Culture, 28, 223–244
  • Published: Brill, Boston, 2013
  • Series: Intersections
  • isbn: 1568–1181
  • DOI: 10.1163/9789004253551_010
  • Abstract: In this article the author surveys some events conntected to severed heads in Counter-Reformation Rome, in the period roughly from 1570 to 1630. In these decades the predecessors of the Bollandistes, members of both the Jesuit and the Oratorian orders, took stock of which relics were venerated under whose name, in Rome as much as in the rest of the Catholic world. As the inventory of relics in this period became more complete and articulated, the occurrence of conflicting data required the clergy to pay closer attention to the physical quality of relics. As heads of martyrs and confessors were observed, details were noted that either supported or problematized the historical claims for which the Counter-Reformation church required satisfactory proof. In particular, the claims on the part of several ecclesiastical institutions to possess the head of one and the same martyr invited close scrutiny – maybe more so than other bodily parts, as the head had distinctive features that served as indications of, for instance, his or her age, that could be checked with the hagiographical documentation.
  • Note: http://booksandjournals.brillonline.com/content/books/b9789004253551_010
  • Subject Keywords:
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