Vera Icon'? : the variable Veronica of medieval England

Title: Vera Icon'? : the variable Veronica of medieval England
Variant title
"Pravý obraz"? : proměnlivý Veraikon ve středověké Anglii
Author: Windeatt, Barry
Source document: Convivium. 2017, vol. 4, iss. Supplementum, pp. [58]-71
  • ISSN
    2336-3452 (print)
    2336-808X (online)
Type: Article
License: Not specified license
Rights access
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Early reports of English responses to the Vernicle constitute some of the most significant evidence of the icon's development. British travelers to Rome in the early-thirteenth century provided valuable observations on the relic's appearance; Matthew Paris chronicled a crucial miracle affecting the Vernicle and Pope Innocent III's institution of indulgences; and thirteenth-century English manuscripts were illustrated with the earliest extant representations of the Vernicle. Yet, although the Vernicle's unique claim is to preserve the direct impress of Christ's features rather than a mere painted likeness, the Vernicle became familiar in quite diverse and even contradictory versions. After a review of how various narrative accounts develop of the Vernicle's origin, this article surveys the disparities in accounts of the Vernicle in fourteenth- and fifteenth-century English texts and images. Taken together, they represent a kind of mouvance and coexistence of different understandings of the legend, the relic, and its replication.
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