Religious Landscapes

in the Eighth Century: Ireland and Northern Francia in Comparison (current project)

This project was awarded an ELEVATE: Irish Research Council International Career Development Fellowship – co-funded by Marie Cure Actions. This is a collaborative project between the Department of History and Art History of the University of Utrecht and the School of History and Archives of the University College Dublin.

Abstract: Northern Francia was an area of strong Irish influence and a centre of learning where normative texts were produced which were influenced by Irish texts. Frankish books meant to be used in confession and penance texts were inspired by earlier Irish ones, but were adjusted to attend the particular needs of the communities which they were produced to. This research intends to shed new light into the interactions between the Irish and Frankish societies in the eight-century and place the literature on penance, produced by these cultural milieus at the heart of the discussions about medieval  culture. It will contribute to the understanding of the process of exchange of ideas between these societies and establish the relevance of Irish normative texts for the societies which adopted and re-issued them. Both the particularisms and the commonalities between the various documents produced in this period will be analysed in this research. It will also aim to identify the audiences of these texts and further investigate the impact of the expansion of Christianity on these communities through the expansion of pastoral care and the institutions of confession and penance.

Keywords: Penitentials, Canon-law, Francia, Ireland, Christian Conversion

Research Team:

Dr Elaine Pereira Farrell , (University of Utrecht & University College Dublin), principal investigator and project manager.
Dr  Roy Flechner (UCD), mentor at Home Institution
Dr  Rob Meens (University of Utrecht), mentor at International Host Institution
Dr Carine van Rhijn, (University of Utrecht), external collaborator and advisor
Prof Ludger Körntgen (Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz), external collaborator and advisor.

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