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How the 'Cerf sanz tache' found its way into the Vulgate Cycle


Endress, Laura (2014). How the 'Cerf sanz tache' found its way into the Vulgate Cycle. Reinardus, 25:78-95.

Abstract

The white stag that appears in the 13th-century Vulgate Cycle of Arthurian romances is a symbolically many-faceted being, which looks back on a long series of textual antecedents. One of its most noticeable traits is its christological nature and the interpretation of its spotless white color as a sign of spiritual purity. These Christianized characteristics of the animal likely developed under the influence of various hagiographic and historiographic sources (among others), where one encounters cervids with similar or analogous attributes. The present study examines some such examples of white stags, focusing on a corpus of texts relating the founding legend of the Norman abbey of Fécamp, and aims at shedding light on the gradual Christianization of the white stag on its evolutionary path into and through the Vulgate Cycle.

The white stag that appears in the 13th-century Vulgate Cycle of Arthurian romances is a symbolically many-faceted being, which looks back on a long series of textual antecedents. One of its most noticeable traits is its christological nature and the interpretation of its spotless white color as a sign of spiritual purity. These Christianized characteristics of the animal likely developed under the influence of various hagiographic and historiographic sources (among others), where one encounters cervids with similar or analogous attributes. The present study examines some such examples of white stags, focusing on a corpus of texts relating the founding legend of the Norman abbey of Fécamp, and aims at shedding light on the gradual Christianization of the white stag on its evolutionary path into and through the Vulgate Cycle.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Romance Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:800 Literature, rhetoric & criticism
470 Latin & Italic languages
410 Linguistics
440 French & related languages
460 Spanish & Portuguese languages
450 Italian, Romanian & related languages
Language:French
Date:2014
Deposited On:08 Jan 2015 10:24
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 18:42
Publisher:Benjamins
ISSN:1569-9951
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1075/rein.25.06end

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