The past, a foreign country
Time, space, and the Scottishness of the Scottish Legendary
in The Scottish Legendary
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This chapter concentrates on the question of how Scottish the Scottish Legendary is and links its geographical and linguistic origin with more general questions of how time and space are imagined and constructed throughout the legends. As to the latter, the chapter argues that, as is to be expected from the genre, neither time nor space plays a significant role on the level of the narratives. The two concepts are meaningful rather on a figurative level in that they point to the end of time and structure Christian life and times and invite the audience to visit shrines and pilgrimage sites. The question of the Scottishness rounds off the chapter: it is shown that the compilation lacks any overt discussion of nationalism or demonstrations of national pride and thus differs from other late fourteenth century Scottish texts. Yet, the two Scottish saints included in the legendary (Machar and Ninian) bear evidence of what may be a specifically Scottish hagiographic poetics.

The Scottish Legendary

Towards a poetics of hagiographic narration

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