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Old 02-14-2019, 05:00 AM
Sangahyando is offline
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Scoring low marks in hagiography


I'm not Catholic; and would seem to have a tendency to get mixed-up as regards saints -- even very well-known ones. Was thinking of making a lighthearted post in the IMHO thread "Being Single on Valentine's day?", to the effect of my just being glad not to be a girl threatened with being sold into prostitution, unless a generous saint were to anonymously furnish me with a dowry. Did a bit of Googling to get some detail re this story, found nothing about it under Saint Valentine; then realised that the saint of the "dowries" episode, is St. Nicholas -- he who morphed into Santa Claus.

In the "searching" process, I stumbled on info from a Catholic source, to the effect that "Over the years St. Valentine has come incorrectly to be associated with finding love, the Church says. He is the patron saint for those who have already found their soulmate. St. Raphael is the patron saint for happy encounters, and it is to him that [single people unhappy with their state] should properly direct their prayers."

https://www.facebook.com/notes/angel...e/51484438148/

While reckoning that this distinction in roles savours a bit, of hairsplitting; am just now feeling, rather more strongly, that things always seem to be more complicated than one has imagined they were -- a slight case of the "my brain hurts" sentiment.

Last edited by Sangahyando; 02-14-2019 at 05:01 AM.
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Old 02-14-2019, 06:22 AM
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Oh. I thought this thread would be about, say, feeling left out among your college buddies because you couldn’t distinguish Charlie Parker from John Coltrane.

Anyway, carry on!
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:59 AM
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I thought it was going to be about biographers who end up hating the person they're writing about.
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:48 AM
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After the above posts, I felt the need to look up the h-word in the dictionary, just to be sure I'd got it right -- indeed it meant first-and-foremost, the study of the doings of holy folks; meaning later broadened to include admired and revered secular figures.

I'd wondered whether some people would think my problem was to do with the study of "baddies" in Harry Potter...
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Old 02-14-2019, 11:18 AM
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The word "hagiography" always reminds me of Robertson Davies' "Deptford Trilogy", where the main character has a side hobby of cataloguing some of the lesser known saints. The one that has always stuck with me was Saint Wilgefortis, who was apparently a woman with a full beard.
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Old 02-14-2019, 12:05 PM
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As regards "fun saints' names", I have a liking for Saint Willibrord -- a hardy guy from the north of England, who did evangelising stuff in the Rhineland-type area about a millennium ago. I gather that he's much venerated in Luxembourg.
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Old 02-14-2019, 12:46 PM
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I once knew an African guy named Swithin [sic], after this saint: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swithun
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Old 02-14-2019, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sangahyando View Post
After the above posts, I felt the need to look up the h-word in the dictionary, just to be sure I'd got it right -- indeed it meant first-and-foremost, the study of the doings of holy folks; meaning later broadened to include admired and revered secular figures.
I had to look it up too - turns out I only knew the other meaning, to overpraise.

I had taken the OP title as suggesting an amusing story, perhaps taking place at a wedding reception, where the OP had loused up a speech requiring great praise for - I don't know, the mother of the groom perhaps - and caused grave offence.

Imagine my disappointment.....

j
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Old 02-14-2019, 07:28 PM
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It's kind of cool looking up the various saints, and finding out who is a patron of what. Valentine got "demoted" years ago, but nobody told Hallmark.

Christopher is considered the patron to travelers, but he also got demoted.

St Anthony is supposed to be the go-to for lost stuff, and even non-Catholics know St Jude is the patron saint for lost causes. Poor St Jude is probably getting a work out in Washington DC right about now.

One of the most interesting, IMHO, is St Lawrence. He, like so many others, was tortured to death for being a Christian. His torturers were the inventive sort--they put him on a large griddle over a roaring fire. Lawrence then begged them to flip him over, the one side was quite done!

St Lawrence is the patron of restauranteurs.


~VOW
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elendil's Heir View Post
I once knew an African guy named Swithin [sic], after this saint: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swithun
I associate that name with Simpsons: https://youtu.be/aYS48g5FD4g
Quote:
Originally Posted by VOW View Post
It's kind of cool looking up the various saints, and finding out who is a patron of what. Valentine got "demoted" years ago, but nobody told Hallmark.

Christopher is considered the patron to travelers, but he also got demoted.

St Anthony is supposed to be the go-to for lost stuff, and even non-Catholics know St Jude is the patron saint for lost causes. Poor St Jude is probably getting a work out in Washington DC right about now.

One of the most interesting, IMHO, is St Lawrence. He, like so many others, was tortured to death for being a Christian. His torturers were the inventive sort--they put him on a large griddle over a roaring fire. Lawrence then begged them to flip him over, the one side was quite done!

St Lawrence is the patron of restauranteurs.


~VOW
Yeah they did a sort of purge a few years ago of the more suspect saints. Christopher was one of the weirder ones. In Eastern Orthodox tradition, and sometimes Catholic, he was portrayed with a dog head: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynocephaly
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:05 PM
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Oh and Lawrence is also a patron of comedians. His Protestant cousin of snark is probably Giles Corey, who was pressed at Salem and instead of confessing demanded "more weight!"
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:39 PM
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Who, I wonder, is the patron saint of bizarre and provocative first posts?
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Old 02-14-2019, 11:20 PM
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Once in a bookstore I heard someone cursing St. Quiteria. I jokingly pointed out "hey, some respect, she's got a small church in my home town!" "Wait, she's real? Damn! I always cursed her thinking she wasn't, got it from my Dad!" We remained friends for several years, until the end of college took us apart. Like many other saints whose names sound funnily improbable to Spanish ears, she's filed under "Roman martyr".


One of my favorites is St Barbara, patron saint of things that go BOOM (storms and explosives; yes, really). One of the Spanish names for a munitions depot is santabárbara: they used to be marked with a little image of the saint. And the closest coworker to St Jude is St. Rita (not St. Margaret, even though Rita is usually a diminutive for Margarita); she's patron saint of impossible people and impossible tasks. A SeaBee kind of lady, you might say.
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Old 02-15-2019, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Nava View Post
...One of my favorites is St Barbara, patron saint of things that go BOOM (storms and explosives; yes, really). One of the Spanish names for a munitions depot is santabárbara: they used to be marked with a little image of the saint....
You could get one of these: https://www.geocaching.com/track/details.aspx?id=655448
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Old 02-16-2019, 05:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thelurkinghorror View Post
I associate that name with Simpsons: https://youtu.be/aYS48g5FD4gYeah they did a sort of purge a few years ago of the more suspect saints. Christopher was one of the weirder ones. In Eastern Orthodox tradition, and sometimes Catholic, he was portrayed with a dog head: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynocephaly
The well-known yet "suspect" saints, can be entertaining. One such is my own country's patron, St. George -- to whom I think the Church has given the chop in recent times, though am not certain about this. Seemingly he became England's patron saint at a late date -- latish Middle Ages -- and nobody seems sure as to why: his story has him being born and doing his stuff in the Middle East, and never going anywhere near England.

There's a lovely "Just So story" in this connection, in Julian Rathbone's (mostly rather depressing) novel The Last English King. At the start of the Battle of Hastings, William the Conqueror and his troops are preparing to charge against their adversaries with overwhelming force. William launches into a stirring speech to urge them on -- wants to quote in this speech, the name of England's patron saint, but realises that he doesn't know which saint occupies that slot. He pauses, turns to his brother Bishop Odo who is beside him, ready also to join in the battle; and says in an undertone, "Hey, Odo, who's the patron saint of this pestilential country?"

Odo has no idea of the answer -- but, albeit he's a man of God, is no fonder than anyone else of having to confess total ignorance; so, picking at random the first saint's name that comes into his head, he replies "George". The Conqueror picks up his oration again, finishing with a rousing cry to the effect of "God for William, Normandy, and Saint George !".
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