Sacred landscapes, spiritual travel: embodied holiness and long distance pilgrimage in the counter reformation
Long regarded as a medieval tradition which declined into insignificance after Luther, pilgrimage expanded considerably from the mid-sixteenth century, until well after 1750. This essay examines long-distance journeys to shrines, rather than sacred sites themselves, to explore how landscapes travelled were perceived, experienced and used by pilgrims in the Counter Reformation. Using theory such as phenomenology, the focus is on autobiographical accounts of pilgrimages to two case study sites, the Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, northern France and Santiago de Compostela, in Galicia, north west Spain, roughly between 1580 and 1750. These were shrines with origins in the early medieval period and which attracted a clientele over long distances. These pilgrimages were also in some way affected by religious conflict in the sixteenth century, whether by direct attack by Huguenots as at the Mont, or by war-time disruptions of its routes as with Compostela, as well as the theological and polemical attacks on the practice of pilgrimage itself by Protestant authors. Pilgrimage studies have examined ‘place’ – the shrine - but a focus on ‘landscape’ allows for a consideration of wider religious and cultural contexts, relations and experiences in this period of religious change.
The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version.
Citation : Tingle, E. (2018) Sacred landscapes, spiritual travel: embodied holiness and long distance pilgrimage in the counter reformation.Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 28,
ISSN : 0080-4401
Research Group : History Research Group
Research Institute : Institute of History
Peer Reviewed : Yes
- School of Humanities