Roman and Mediaeval History, Illlustrated Travel Journals, Mediaeval Literature, Geology


10.3.07
  Patron Saint of Historians?

Liam at Sententiae et Clamores made a shocking discovery: historians don't have a patron saint. Since there are saints for every occupation including Old Clothes Dealers and Nail Makers, he resolved to remedy that neglect and suggested some likely candidates.

A few days later he put up a poll. So go and vote for you favourite Patron Saint of Historians.

I picked Bede Venerabilis. I admit I'm not fond of his Catholic bias, but he isn't the only one to show that shortcoming, and on the other side, without him, everyone writing aboute 'Dark Ages' Britain would be totally lost. Gergory of Tours was my second choice because I read him for research on the Merovingians, but I think Bede left the greater overall impact on historiography. Isidore of Seville was out of competition since he said bad things about the Goths. *grin* Ok, on a serious level, Isidore was violently anti-Arian and I've always thought the Arian Christianism was a very interesting take on the role of Jesus seldom done justice in the sources.
 
Comments:
Yup!
Bede's the Man.
 
Oh, Bede for me without a doubt. Yes, he has a pro-Roman Catholic bias but then he was a devout monk so that pretty much goes with the job description. And he very helpfully makes some effort to say where he got stuff from, at least sometimes. Hail to Bede, Father of the Footnote!
 
So far it looks like Bede's got the majority of the votes.

Go, Bede!
 
Gabriele,

Thanks very much for the link. I will keep the polling open for a couple more days.

As a scholar of medieval Spain, I must stand up for my man Isidore of Seville. I'm actually reading his history of the Goths right now, and he seems not to have a problem with them -- of course, since he worked for them...

As far as his anti-Arianism, well, the sixth century was a pretty intense time for things like that. It was like the Yankees vs the Red Sox -- there was no room for lukewarm feelings.
 
Lol, Liam, in case Excalibor stops by, Isidore may get another vote from a Spaniard. :)

I think it was the Vandals who took the worst from Isidore, and sure, he isn't more biased than most of his compatriotes. I still voted for Bede, though.
 
Just to be different I vote for Eusebius of Caesarea.the "Father of Church History." Technically he is only listed as a Saint in the Eastern Churches but not the Western Church, but it won’t be to many more decades there is an agreement of mutual recognition.

His Church History is a lively read even in the flat Loeb translation. He brings to light much that would not be know otherwise and puts life and context into what would other wise be dull statistics.

Bede is a good second place.
 
I don't know much about Eusebius. Is he the same who's currently on place 2 in the poll?

*makes note to look out for his Church History*
 
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The Lost Fort is a blog based on my travels in Germany, the UK, Scandinavia, and other places (like Flanders and the Baltic States), with essays on Roman and Mediaeval history illustrated with lots of photos of old castles, cathedrals, Roman remains, and beautiful landscapes. You may also find the odd essay about geology or Mediaeval literature.

All texts (except comments by guests) and photos (if no other copyright is noted) on this blog are copyright of Gabriele Campbell.

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I'm a blogger from Germany with a MA in Literature and History which doesn't pay my bills, so I use it to research blogposts instead. I'm interested in everything Roman and Mediaeval, avid reader and sometimes writer, opera enthusiast, traveller with a liking for foreign languages and odd rocks, photographer, and tea aficionado. And an old-fashioned blogger who hasn't yet gotten an Instagram account. :-)


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