The Jew, the Cathedral and the Medieval City: Synagoga and Ecclesia in the Thirteenth Century

The Jew, the Cathedral and the Medieval City: Synagoga and Ecclesia in the Thirteenth Century

by Nina Rowe
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0521197449

ISBN-13: 9780521197441

Pub. Date: 04/04/2011

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

In the thirteenth century, sculptures of Synagoga and Ecclesia - paired female personifications of the Synagogue defeated and the Church triumphant - became a favored motif on cathedral façades in France and Germany. Throughout the centuries leading up to this era, the Jews of northern Europe prospered financially and intellectually, a trend that ran counter

Overview

In the thirteenth century, sculptures of Synagoga and Ecclesia - paired female personifications of the Synagogue defeated and the Church triumphant - became a favored motif on cathedral façades in France and Germany. Throughout the centuries leading up to this era, the Jews of northern Europe prospered financially and intellectually, a trend that ran counter to the long-standing Christian conception of Jews as relics of the pre-history of the Church. In The Jew, the Cathedral and the Medieval City, Nina Rowe examines the sculptures as defining elements in the urban Jewish-Christian encounter. She locates the roots of the Synagoga-Ecclesia motif in antiquity and explores the theme's public manifestations at the cathedrals of Reims, Bamberg, and Strasbourg, considering each example in relation to local politics and culture. Ultimately, she demonstrates that royal and ecclesiastical policies to restrain the religious, social, and economic lives of Jews in the early thirteenth century found a material analog in lovely renderings of a downtrodden Synagoga, placed in the public arena of the city square.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521197441
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
04/04/2011
Pages:
346
Product dimensions:
7.20(w) x 10.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: the Jew, the cathedral and the city;
Part I. Imagining Jews and Judaism in Life and Art:
1. The Jew in a Christian world: denunciation and restraint in the age of cathedrals;
2. Ecclesia and Synagoga: the life of a motif;
Part II. Art and Life on the Ecclesiastical Stage - Three Case Studies: Introduction to Part II: nature, antiquity and sculpture in the early thirteenth century;
3. Reims: 'our Jews' and the royal sphere;
4. Bamberg: the empire, the Jews and earthly order;
5. Strasbourg: clerics, burghers and Jews in the medieval city; Epilogue: the afterlife of an image.

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