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Appears in Collections:History and Politics Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Holy Blood Devotion in Later in Medieval Scotland
Author(s): Oram, Richard
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Keywords: Holy Blood
Christocentric devotion
lay spirituality
Issue Date: 2017
Date Deposited: 7-Nov-2016
Citation: Oram R (2017) Holy Blood Devotion in Later in Medieval Scotland. Journal of Medieval History, 43 (5), pp. 562-578.
Abstract: Of the Christocentric devotions which achieved widespread in popularity in later medieval Scotland, the cult of the Holy Blood gained the greatest prominence. Connections with the blood-relic centres at Bruges and Wilsnack, primarily established by merchants, provided the conduit for the development of the cult in Scotland’s east coast burghs from the second quarter of the fifteenth century. The cult remained principally an urban phenomenon and was associated closely with the guildry of those burghs where Holy Blood altars were founded. Holy Blood devotion, while not exclusively associated with members of the merchant community, provided a vehicle for expression of guild identity and, as in Bruges, a mechanism for the regulation and control of guild members’ public behaviour. That regulatory function was secondary to the cult’s soteriological significance, its popularity in urban Scotland reflecting the wider late medieval European lay quest for closer and more direct personal connections with God.
DOI Link: 10.1080/03044181.2017.1377104
Rights: © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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