Miracles and marvels in Latin narrative histories of the Crusades, 1095-1204

Spacey, Beth Catherine (2017). Miracles and marvels in Latin narrative histories of the Crusades, 1095-1204. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis examines the form and function of the miraculous as it appears in Latin narrative histories of the crusades of 1095-1204. It addresses an important scholarly lacuna by approaching crusading through the lens of the miraculous, a theme of critical importance to many historical representations of the crusades. Three core lines of analysis are pursued: how the miraculous, as the ultimate epistemological tool for the discernment of divine will, was employed by the authors of crusade narratives as a component in their rhetorical strategies; how representations of the miraculous can reflect changing contemporary attitudes towards the crusading movement; and whether the miraculous of crusade texts can mirror parallel changes to the intellectual landscape of western Europe. The importance of supernatural themes to the narrativisation of the crusades is revealed through the exploration of three thematic dichotomies: miracles and marvels; visions and dreams; and signs and augury. It will be shown that the miraculous represents a previously undervalued source for understanding how the crusades were conceptualised, represented, and memorialised in this period. Further, the findings of the thesis exemplify how crusade narratives represent rich and hitherto largely overlooked sources for the study of medieval western European intellectual culture more broadly.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Department of History
Funders: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D111 Medieval History
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/7267


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