This paper examines the various connotations of spatiality as they appear in two Byzantine hagiographical Lives devoted to the holy fools Symeon (BHG 1677) and Andrew (BHG 115z). The two texts, despite differences in authorship (Leontius of Neapolis and “Nicephorus priest of St. Sophia” respectively), and their time and place of composition, can be considered as a hagiographic corpus of its own. Both lives unfold in a late antique urban context, “historical” (but largely undefined) Emesa (Syria) in the case of Symeon, “real” (but largely anachronistic) Constantinople in the case of Andrew. The first text conveys the vivid though conventional image of an urban Eastern Mediterranean center during fading late antiquity, while the second - mostly dominated by churches - reflects medieval attitudes and expectations. Under this respect the Life of Andrew creates a new vision of spatial concepts that are mainly reflected in spiritual, imaginary and oneiric landscapes that seem to prevail over a more material focus. It also introduces “vertical” spatiality through a constant mystical interaction between earth and heaven. The literary image of this space and its authoritative figures is rich in suggestive visual detail often lacking in other parts of the text.

(2022). Spaces Within, Spaces Beyond. Reassessing the Lives of the Holy Fools Symeon and Andrew (BHG 1677, 115z) . Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10446/232395

Spaces Within, Spaces Beyond. Reassessing the Lives of the Holy Fools Symeon and Andrew (BHG 1677, 115z)

Cesaretti, Paolo;Hamarneh, Basema
2022

Abstract

This paper examines the various connotations of spatiality as they appear in two Byzantine hagiographical Lives devoted to the holy fools Symeon (BHG 1677) and Andrew (BHG 115z). The two texts, despite differences in authorship (Leontius of Neapolis and “Nicephorus priest of St. Sophia” respectively), and their time and place of composition, can be considered as a hagiographic corpus of its own. Both lives unfold in a late antique urban context, “historical” (but largely undefined) Emesa (Syria) in the case of Symeon, “real” (but largely anachronistic) Constantinople in the case of Andrew. The first text conveys the vivid though conventional image of an urban Eastern Mediterranean center during fading late antiquity, while the second - mostly dominated by churches - reflects medieval attitudes and expectations. Under this respect the Life of Andrew creates a new vision of spatial concepts that are mainly reflected in spiritual, imaginary and oneiric landscapes that seem to prevail over a more material focus. It also introduces “vertical” spatiality through a constant mystical interaction between earth and heaven. The literary image of this space and its authoritative figures is rich in suggestive visual detail often lacking in other parts of the text.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10446/232395
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