Saturday, 30 April 2011

30.04.2011

... “Connected with St. Boniface and the early German martyrs and missionaries, in pictures, in architectural ornament, and in the stained glass of the German churches, we find two famous female saints, ST. Walburga and St. Ottilia.
The various names borne by the former saint, according to the various localities in which she has been honoured, in Bavaria, Alsace, Poitou, Flanders, and England, testify to her popularity ; - she is St. Walpurgis, Walbourg, Valpurga, Gualbourg, and Avamgour. Her Anglo-Saxon name, Walburga, is the same as the Greek Eucharis, and signifies gracious. …

… “Her death took place about the year 778.
Like many of the religious women of that time, Walpurgis had studied medicine for the purpose of ministering to the poor. The cures she performed, either through faith or skill, were by the people attributed solely to her prayers. After her death she was laid in a hollow rock, near the monastery of Eichstadt, a spot where a kind of bituminous oil exuded from the stone. This oil was for a long time supposed to proceed from her remains, and, under the name of Walpurgis oil, was regarded by the people as a miraculous cure of all manner of diseases.” …

.. “She died on the 25th February; but, in the German and Belgic calendars, the 1st of May, the day on which she was enshrined as a saint, is recorded as the chief festival, and it was solemnised as such over all Germany. On this night, the famous Walpurgist Nacht, the witches held orgies on the Blocksberg.” …

Source: Legends of the monastic Orders, as represented in the fine arts, by Mrs. Jameson, London 1852, pp 7, pp 78
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