This article discusses a single late-fifteenth-century English manuscript as evidence for an understudied form of “virtual” pilgrimage. Bringing together the techniques of codicological, textual, and cartographic-historical research, the article shows how Cambridge, Corpus Christi College, MS 426 presents a vision of the world profoundly inflected by Holy Land pilgrimage, in which scholarly, mathematical geography is placed in the service of knowledge and understanding of the Holy Land. Indeed, within MS 426, the process of gaining understanding of the world’s geography and of the place of the Holy Land within it becomes a kind of virtual pilgrimage: a form of vicarious wandering that prompts religious contemplation and devotion. The article, which includes discussion of the manuscript’s unique and previously unstudied Jerusalem map, thus reminds us to keep in mind the inadequacy of modern taxonomies for dealing with the messy materialities of medieval texts.
Holy Land Pilgrimage and Geography in Fifteenth-Century England: Understanding and Devotion in Cambridge, Corpus Christi College Library, MS 426
Marianne O’Doherty; Holy Land Pilgrimage and Geography in Fifteenth-Century England: Understanding and Devotion in Cambridge, Corpus Christi College Library, MS 426. Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 1 January 2021; 51 (1): 105–139. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10829636-8796270
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