Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index

  • Record Number: 46848
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Nicolaus Maniacoria , , , Dennis Trout, Marco Conti, and Virginia Burrus
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Lives of Saint Constantina: Introduction, Translations, and Commentaries
  • Source: Lives of Saint Constantina: Introduction, Translations, and Commentaries. Marco Conti, Virginia Burrus, and Dennis Trout provided editions, introduction, translations and commentaries.   Edited by Marco Conti, Virginia Burrus, and Dennis Trout. Oxford Early Christian Texts.  Oxford University Press, 2020.
    Primary texts in the book include:
    The Life of Saint Constantina the Virgin - Text and Translation pp. 50-115
    On the Feast of Saint Constantia the Virgin (The Epitome) - Text and Translation pp. 142-151
    Nicolaus Maniacoria’s Life of the Blessed Constantia the Virgin - Text and Translation pp. 166-191
    Constantina's Dedicatory Poem: Basilica of Agnes (Via Nomentana) p. 202
    Appendix B. Passion of Agnes: Epilogue pp. 203-205
    Appendix C. Life of Silvester: Excerpts from the Liber pontificalis pp. 206-207
    Appendix D. Passion of Gallicanus, John, and Paul: Excerpts pp. 208-212
  • Description: Constantina, daughter of the fourth-century emperor Constantine who so famously converted to Christianity, deserves a place of her own in the history of Christianity. As both poet and church-builder, she was an early patron of the Roman cult of the virgin martyr Agnes and was buried ad sanctam in a sumptuously mosaicked mausoleum that still stands. What has been very nearly forgotten is that the twice-married Constantina also came to be viewed as a virgin saint in her own right, said to have been converted and healed of leprosy by Saint Agnes. This volume publishes for the first time critical editions and English translations of three Latin hagiographies dedicated to the empress, offering an introduction and commentaries to contextualize these virtually unknown works. The earliest and longest of them is the anonymous Life of Saint Constantina likely dating to the mid or late sixth century, reflecting a female monastic setting and featuring both a story of pope Silvester's instruction of Constantina and a striking dialogue between Constantina and twelve virgins who offer speeches in praise of virginity as the summum bonum. A second, slightly later work, On the Feast of Saint Constantia (the misnaming of the saint reflecting common confusion), is a more streamlined account apparently tailored for liturgical use in early seventh-century Rome; this text is reworked and expanded by the twelfth-century Roman scholar Nicolaus Maniacoria in his Life of the Blessed Constantia, including a question-and-answer dialogue between Constantina and her two virginal charges Attica and Artemia. These works will be of great interest to students of late ancient and medieval saints' cults, hagiography, monasticism, and women's history. [Reproduced from the publisher's website: https://global.oup.com/academic/product/the-lives-of-saint-constantina-9780198854425?cc=us&lang=en&#]
  • Article Type: Edition of Text; Translation
  • Subject (See Also): Agnes, Martyr, Saint Constantina, Daughter of Constantine the Great Hagiography Monasticism Virginity Women in Religion
  • Award Note: Feminae Translation of the Month, April 2024
  • Geographic Area: Eastern Mediterranean; Italy
  • Century: 4, 6- 7, 12
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  • Author's Affiliation: American University of Rome and Chicago Loyola University [Conti]; Syracuse University [Burrus], University of Missouri [Trout]
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 2020.
  • Language: English; Latin
  • ISSN/ISBN: 9780198854425