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Historie van Jan van Beverley - article and text-1.pdf (444.73 kB)

‘In which land were you born?’ : Cultural transmission in the historie van Jan van Beverley

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posted on 2014-02-14, 13:08 authored by Ben Parsons, Bas Jongenelen
A translation of the Dutch chapbook 'play' of St John of Beverley, a sensational tale of incestuous rape, murder, a wildman hermit, and eventual absolution. The detailed introduction discusses the possibility that there may have been a similar English saint's play on the subject. "By any measure, St John of Beverley is not an obvious choice of subject for a medieval miracle play. Although he was undoubtedly a crucial figure in the northern English church at the beginning of the eighth century, rising to become bishop of Hexham and York, ordaining Bede as priest and deacon, and founding the community of ‘Inderauuda’, later Beverley, his life lacks any of the ‘sensational…supernatural events’ which are common staples of the genre. Even the handful of miracles attributed to him are relatively low-key affairs: Bede stresses his importance as an educator and healer above all, recording how he took in a dumb man and painstakingly taught him to speak, and healed a monk, a local thane, and the daughter of an abbess by prayer and holy water." [Extract from opening paragraph]



Medieval English Theatre, 2012, 34, pp. 30-76

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/Organisation/COLLEGE OF ARTS, HUMANITIES AND LAW/School of English


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Twycross, M.;Carpenter, S.;Kipling, G.



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