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Margret Fetzer

5 (Inter)Personal performances – Devotions therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee. (Devotions 87) This chapter centres on Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, a work originating from an illness during which Donne considered himself on the verge of death, and one of the few writings he published. There are important points of contact between epistolary and devotional modes: as the post-Reformation period witnessed shifts in devotional practices and a new interest in the self, these changes had consequences for early modern

in John Donne’s Performances
Laywomen in monastic spaces
Susannah Crowder

4 Negotiated devotions and performed histories: laywomen in monastic spaces Introduction Male monastic spaces – although theoretically closed to women – formed another vibrant stage for female performance in Metz. In this chapter, I continue to investigate the relationships among performance, gender, history, and devotion through a study of two Messine monasteries and their roles in the religious observances of laywomen. During the fifteenth century, both the Celestine priory and the Benedictine community of St-Arnoul housed performances by and for Catherine

in Performing women
Martin Thompson

This article proposes that Manchester, John Rylands Library, Latin MS 165 was an ‘accessory text’ produced and gifted within the Tudor court and passed down by matrilineal transmission within the influential Fortescue family. It proposes that from the text’s conception, the book of devotions participated in various projects of self-definition, including Henry VII’s campaign for the canonisation of his Lancastrian ancestor, Henry VI. By analysing visual and textual evidence, it posits that later female owners imitated the use of marginal spaces by the book’s original scribe and illuminator. Finally, it traces the book’s ownership back from its acquisition by the John Rylands Library to the viscounts Gage, in whose custody the book underwent a transformation from potentially subversive tool of female devotion to obscure historical artefact.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Sermons, poems, letters and Devotions
Author: Margret Fetzer

Ever since their rediscovery in the 1920s, John Donne's writings have been praised for their energy, vigour and drama – yet so far, no attempt has been made to approach and systematically define these major characteristics of his work. Drawing on J. L. Austin's speech act theory, this comparative reading of Donne's poetry and prose eschews questions of personal or religious sincerity, and instead recreates an image of Donne as a man of many performances. No matter if engaged in the writing of a sermon or a piece of erotic poetry, Donne placed enormous trust in what words could do. Questions as to how saying something may actually bring about that very thing, or how playing the part of someone else affects an actor's identity, are central to his oeuvre – and moreover, highly relevant in the cultural and theological contexts of the early modern period in general. Rather than his particular political or religious allegiances, Donne's preoccupation with linguistic performativity and theatrical efficaciousness is responsible for the dialogical involvedness of his sermons, the provocations of his worldly and divine poems, the aggressive patronage seeking of his letters, and the interpersonal engagement of his Devotions. In treating both canonical and lesser-known Donne texts, this book hopes to make a significant contribution not only to Donne criticism and research into early modern culture, but, by using concepts of performance and performativity as its major theoretical backdrop, it aims to establish an interdisciplinary link with the field of performance studies.

Murderers, martyrs and the ‘sacred space’ of the early modern prison
Lynn Robson

historical controversy that has followed him to the present day. 2 Praying over his rosary, Hunne's devotions make him appear pious, but also exemplify his withdrawal into a secret sacred space, a place of unknowability. Readers (like the jailer) can only infer the meanings of Hunne's devotional acts; his spiritual condition and the meaning of his apparent piety are closed off. The enquirie, published when the lines between Catholic and Protestant were becoming more sharply drawn

in People and piety
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Cara Delay

the earlier pivotal years of the ‘devotional revolution’. From the 1850s to the 1940s, Irish women supervised home-based rituals and devotions, including family prayer and the recitation of the rosary, as well as the important yet understudied station-mass. Lay women across Munster, Connacht, and Leinster demonstrated their dominance over the holy household in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, although distinct differences occurred in rural and urban areas. The station-mass, for example, was a central ritual of rural parishes. Although the idealised

in Irish women and the creation of modern Catholicism, 1850–1950
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Rachel Adcock, Sara Read, and Anna Ziomek

’ – that eternal life was given only to an elect few, predetermined by God. More’s volumes, which are mostly prose but with several poems, demonstrate her piety and instruct all believers to engage in regular spiritual practices. Two works – The Holy Practises of a Devine Lover or the Sainctly Ideots Devotions (1657) and The Spiritual Exercises of the Most Vertuous and Religious D. Gertrude More (1658) – were published in Paris. More declares that she wrote only for her own benefit and the purpose of her 1 Dorothy L. Latz, ‘Glow-Warm Light’: Writings of 17th Century

in Flesh and Spirit
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Carmen M. Mangion

-evangelised Catholics.28 Missions encouraged a variety of pious activities including receiving communion, frequent confession, reciting the rosary, following the stations of the cross and attending pilgrimages and processions. Prayer and devotion were encouraged through novenas, benedictions, expositions of the Blessed Sacrament, the Quaran’ Ore and special devotions to the Holy Family or the Sacred Heart. Devotional aids such as scapulars, medals and rosaries were also advocated.29 Missions lasted for days or weeks, and their achievements were heralded by the Catholic faithful. In

in Contested identities
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Carmen M. Mangion

allowed to ‘solicit in Chapter the Religious Habit’, and if she received the majority of votes, she would commence her novitiate.37 Once accepted as novices, women were able to participate more fully in community life. Their formal acceptance as novices was celebrated in the ceremony of reception, commonly called the clothing ceremony.38 The clothing ceremony Ceremonies, processions and devotions had an important function in the Roman Catholic faith. Devotions provided a ‘common language’ and an aesthetic outlet for Catholics of all classes and ethnic backgrounds. Mary

in Contested identities
R. N. Swanson

Within Christianity, the principal focus of devotion was necessarily the divinity, in particular Christ, the second person of the Trinity. A striking feature of late medieval England is the Christ- and crucifix-centred nature of the spirituality, expressed in small-scale daily devotions, in visionary and devotional

in Catholic England