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Setting eyes on the holy: the description of sacred sites in accounts of pilgrimages to Jerusalem and the medieval school of seeing, 12th-15th century

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Setting eyes on the holy.: The description of sacred sites in accounts of pilgrimages to Jerusalem and the medieval school of seeing, 12th-15th century

The great appeal that the holy sites of Palestine held for a steady current of medieval pilgrims is well known. Their travel accounts, often saturated with facts and detailed descriptions of the sacred places, have long been used as sources by historians of art, architecture or geography. Concerning the texts themselves however, questions remain. What motivated pilgrims to set their eyes on the holy? What did this holiness look like? Who had defined the signs of sanctity? Which spiritual theory lay behind the idea that human eyes could capture the divine? In order to begin to answer these questions, the talk will introduce a medieval school of thought that motivated examination of the earthly for the sake of contemplation.

Please bring a bag lunch, and inquiring mind, and all of your medievalist friends to HPS Seminar room 1 on Monday May 14, 1 p.m.

It has been an exciting and extremely well-attended Cabinet series this year, and it would be appropriate to send it off with a packed house!

Best Wishes

David Allan Feller daf33@cam.ac.uk

This talk is part of the Cabinet of Natural History series.

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