Angela of Foligno’s Memorial (review). Rosemary Dunn. Parergon, Volume 18, Number 3, July , pp. (Review). Published by Australian and New. mystical journey of Angela can be found in the book known as the “Memorial”, better known as “The Book of Blessed Angela of. Foligno.” The book was edited. Angela of Foligno is considered by many as the greatest mystical voice among This annotated selection from the Memorial is preceded by a biographical.

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This decision does, however, throw less familiar texts into the limelight. Some will be familiar to many readers, such as Ritson’s famous condemnation of Lydgate as ‘this voluminous, prosaick, and driveling monk’ p.

Angela of Foligno’s Memorial by Cristina Mazzoni

But it is a revelation to read from Scott’s introduction to his edition ofSir Tristrem. There are also perverse pleasures to be found in reading these scholars’ debates against each other in an era preceding our own very formal academic prose. So, for example, inPercy condemns the antiquaries ‘who have revived the works of our ancient writers’ as ‘for the most part men void of taste and genius’ p.

The Invention ofMiddle English is a companion volume, certainly, to The Making of Middle English, but like all good anthologies it does not foreclose research; rather, it opens up the history of medieval studies by making so many of its key texts so readily accessible. Brewer, ; paper pp. The new translation of Angela’s Memorial is a welcome addition to the growi literature memogial this fascinating thirteenth-century mystic.


The full text allows the English reader to place in context the mmorial single passage when she swallows the leper’s sore as an imitation of the Eucharist.

To many modern tastes, aspects ofAngela’s foliyno must seem hysterical or neurotic. Memoriak, her biography shows a woman of complexity and deep spirituality, and allows a more complex understanding of a particular w o m a n and her time.

Angela of Foligno’s Memorial

Angela has increasingly become the focus of feminist studies angea Cristina Mazzoni provides an interpretative essay to explore Angela’s Christology in terms ofm o d e m feminine theology. In addition, she furnishes an annotated bibliography of feminist and other analyses of Angela that will be useful folignk scholars of mysticism and of gender studies. The Memorial provides, on one level, Angela’s description of her visions, Short Notices but is written by a scribe who admits that he wrote what he did not always understand.

Angela protests the blasphemy of describing her ineffable experience, but nevertheless conveys a significant degree of meaning.

It provides arichore for literary analysis. Angela’s choice of language to describe her spiritual experiences, her references to food and to the smell of the divine, is attributed by Mazzoni to a female’s interest in food and the body.

However, the ancient mystical tradition described God’s word as food to be digested, and divine wisdom was regarded as sweet, or sweet-smelling. Perhaps one should be cautious about ascribing a particular gender to what may be a more general, albeit embodied, experience. The most powerful of Angela’s early mystical experiences followed her meditation on the Gospel the sweet food of the word, p.

Food, for Angela, may then angella a divine referent the word as well as being a metaphor for the divine. Concentration onAngela’s floigno metaphors sometimes obscures thefrequentlymentioned divine metaphors of thefieryjoy in the soul, or as she says: Mystical experience is certainly individual, and expressed in terms ofone’s experience, including gender.

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Angela of Foligno

Yet the commonality of experience, conformity to which validates the authority of the individual mystic, should not be ignored.

However, this excellent edition allows the reader to memodial the words ofAngela for herself.

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Volume 18, Number 3, July pp. In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Rent from DeepDyve Recommend. Project MUSE Mission Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide.

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