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A Paradise of Priests : Singing the Civic and Episcopal Hagiography of Medieval Liege - Catherine Saucier

A Paradise of Priests

Singing the Civic and Episcopal Hagiography of Medieval Liege

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In the "priestly paradise" of medieval Liege, sacred music became a pervasive and versatile medium by which the clergy promoted the holy status of their city. While this hotbed of female piety and Eucharistic devotion is recognized as a center of liturgical innovation and clerical writing, the symbiosis of saintly and civic ideals voiced in locally composed plainchant and polyphony has remained overlooked. The key to unlocking the civic meaning of this music lies in the saints' legends and bishops' deeds from which it emerged and in the rituals and performance spaces in which it was heard. In A Paradise of Priests, Catherine Saucier forges new interdisciplinary connections between musicology, the liturgical arts, the cult of saints, church history, and urban studies to demonstrate how liegeois clerics constructed a civic sacred identity through sung rituals in conjunction with hagiographic writing and relic display. Focusing on the veneration and influence of five bishops active between the seventh and sixteenth centuries, Saucier explains how the performance of sacred music accrued new meanings at moments of signal importance in the life of the city. A Paradise of Priests is an essential resource for scholars and students interested in the history of the Low Countries, hagiography and its reception, and ecclesiastical institutions. Catherine Saucier is assistant professor of music history at Arizona State University.

The culmination of more than a decade of careful archival and analytical work about the music and culture of Liege (in modern Belgium). Demonstrates how music, hagiography, and civic identity were intimately intertwined in Liege during the late Middle Ages. A particularly useful volume because of the music transcriptions and translations of chant texts, many of which are not available in the Cantus Index. Balances thorough archival work with analysis of music and text. MUSIC LIBRARY ASSOCIATION NOTES Because of its broad scope, clear organization, and accessible style, this rich book will be of service not only to musicologists but also to scholars of liturgy, hagiography, church history, and urban history. CATHOLIC HISTORICAL REVIEW Weaves a compelling narrative centred on the lives of Liege's founder-bishops as celebrated in the hagiography, art, rituals and music made, enacted and re-enacted by the medieval clerical population of Liege. An expert examination of an impressively vast array of sources -- including archival, liturgical, artistic and hagiographic. A must-read for anyone interested in how one might locate the fashioning of a city's image in the extant remains of story, art, music and ritual. EARLY MUSIC An impeccably organized and elegantly crafted discussion of the previously under-appreciated liturgical materials of medieval Liege, and an enlightening study of the interrelations between liturgical chants and the civic culture in which they existed and which they sought to uphold. It serves as a model of how a study of localized liturgy should be treated, and as a valuable resource for those interested in the ecclesiastical history of the city (it includes a helpful handlist of chant books from the diocese of Liege, to encourage further attention). MUSIC & LETTERS Saucier's A Paradise of Priests represents a substantial achievement in a number of fields, including medieval and Renaissance musicology, urban history, and church history. The book's readable style will make it accessible to students as well as to scholars and teachers. A seamless and compelling narrative. --Susan Boynton, Columbia University

ISBN: 9781580464802
ISBN-10: 1580464807
Series: Eastman Studies in Music
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 316
Published: 1st May 2014
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.65