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C. Oertel
The Cult of St Erik in Medieval Sweden
Veneration of a Royal Saint, Twelfth–Sixteenth Centuries

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XIII+398 p., 48 b/w ill., 156 x 234 mm, 2016
ISBN: 978-2-503-55507-2
Languages: English, German
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Retail price: EUR 100,00 excl. tax
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Online content: http://www.brepolsonline.net/action/showBook?doi=10.1484/M.AS-EB.5.107423

The first comprehensive book on the royal saint St Erik and the interaction between his cult and medieval Swedish society

In this first comprehensive monograph on St Erik, the author follows the cult of the Swedish royal saint from its obscure beginnings in the twelfth century up to its climax in the time of the Kalmar Union (1397‒1523). The focus of the book lies on the interaction of the cult with different groups within medieval Swedish society and these groups' attempts to utilize the prestige of the saint to further their political aims. From the middle of the thirteenth century, the cult was particularly connected to the archbishopric of Uppsala and the royal dynasty of Bjalbo. During the fifteenth century the Swedish royal saint symbolized (together with St Olaf of Norway and St Knut of Denmark) the three kingdoms of the Kalmar Union. At the same time, his prestige was successfully employed in the propaganda of King Karl Knutsson (Bonde) and the three Sture-riksförestandare to legitimate their anti-Union politics. In order to gain a broader perspective, the author uses a wide variety of sources. These include a number of texts which contain information about the cult of the saint (legend, miracle collection, offices, sermons, chronicles, charters). In addition, different sorts of depictions showing St Erik on wall paintings, altarpieces, seals, and coins are used in order to give a comprehensive account of the multifaceted veneration of this saint.

Table of Contents

Foreword

Chapter 1. Religion, Politics, and the Cult of Saints

Chapter 2. The Sources

Chapter 3. Royal Saints and the Shift of Faith

Chapter 4. The Early Cult (1160‒c. 1250)

Chapter 5. The First Wave of Cult-Intensification (c. 1250‒1319)

Chapter 6. Times of Stagnation versus the Rule of Magnus Eriksson (1319‒89)

Chapter 7. St Erik and the Kalmar Union (1389‒1520)

Chapter 8. St Erik among the Canon of Saints

Conclusion

Zusammenfassung (German summary)

Appendices

Review

“The Cult of St Erik in Medieval Sweden: Veneration of a Royal Saint, Twelfth-Sixteenth Centuries is a pleasure to read and learn from. While the amount of historical detail may seem a little overwhelming, the book is structured in such a way that the reader has no problem navigating his/her way though the wealth of information presented. The book is truly a model for analyses of the cult of an individual saint in that it takes a very interdisciplinary approach and carefully reassesses previous scholarly assumptions. (...)  Anyone interested in Saint Erik will have to consult this book, which will be of interest to students and scholars within the field of medieval (religious) history, medieval literature, hagiography, and several other disciplines.” (Kirsten Wolf, in The Medieval Review, 05.02.2017)

Interest Classification:
Religion (including History of Religion) & Theology
Christian devotion & forms of religious expression
Hagiographical writings & the cult of saints
Medieval & Modern (Indo-European) Languages & Literatures
Germanic langs & lits (other than English)
North Germanic/Scandinavian languages & literatures
Medieval & Renaissance History (c.400-1500)
Medieval European history (400-1500) : local & regional history
Scandinavian & Baltic lands

This publication is also distributed by: ISD, Marston
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