Bearded ghosts and holy visions: miracles, manliness and clerical authority on the First Crusade

Hodgson, N. ORCID: 0000-0002-8490-209X, 2022. Bearded ghosts and holy visions: miracles, manliness and clerical authority on the First Crusade. In: M. Rowley and N. Hodgson, eds., Miracles, political authority and violence in medieval and early modern history. Themes in medieval and early modern history . Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 48-77. ISBN 9780367767280

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Peter Bartholomew is best known for his miraculous ‘discovery’ of the Holy Lance, the spear which pierced Christ’s side during the crucifixion, inside the city of Antioch during the First Crusade, and for his subsequent dramatic death after an ordeal by fire to prove the veracity of this holy relic. The events surrounding the Lance polarised some authors, so that Peter Bartholomew’s story was constructed and reconstructed in ways that reflected different models of clerical masculinity and religious leadership. Differing accounts of the ordeal have not yet been fully examined by historians, especially in respect of the Peter Tudebode manuscript tradition. In this essay, these variations are traced across five main aspects of the narrative—the establishment of Peter Bartholomew’s character, the performative elements discovery of the Lance, Peter’s claims to authority, his confrontations with doubters, and representations of the ordeal by fire. The results are examined in comparison with other religious figures such as Arnulf of Chocques and Adhémar of le Puy to explore how the miraculous combined with ideas about clerical masculinity in order to reflect different ecclesiastical ideals of authority in respect of the visionary experience. It also sheds further light on how authors constructed, evaluated and authorised the veracity of divine intervention on crusade.

Item Type: Chapter in book
Creators: Hodgson, N.
Publisher: Routledge
Place of Publication: Abingdon
Date: 2022
ISBN: 9780367767280
Divisions: Schools > School of Arts and Humanities
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 12 Aug 2022 10:21
Last Modified: 12 Aug 2022 10:21

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