Egeria Criticism - Essay

C. L. Feltoe (essay date 1919)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Feltoe, C. L. Introduction to The Pilgrimage of Etheria, translated by M. L. McClure, pp. vii-xlviii. London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1919.

[In the following excerpt from his introduction to M. L. McClure's 1919 translation of the Itinerarium Egeriae, Feltoe outlines the course of Egeria's pilgrimage to the Holy Land and summarizes matters of ecclesiastical and liturgical interest contained in her account.]


We have, of course, no hint of the route taken by Etheria from her home in the extreme west of Europe as far as Constantinople and back again, unless her mention...

(The entire section is 7380 words.)

George E. Gingras (essay date 1970)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Gingras, George E. “‘Et Fit Missa ad Tertia’: A Textual Problem in the Itinerarium Egeriae XLVI, 4.” In Kyriakon: Festschrift Johannes Quasten, Volume II, edited by Patrick Granfield and Josef A. Jungmann, pp. 596-603. Münster Westfalen, Germany: Verlag Aschendorff, 1970.

[In the following essay, Gingras explicates a complicated passage of the Itinerarium Egeriae concerning daily catechistic instruction during Lent in fourth-century Jerusalem.]

Chapter 46 of the Itinerarium Egeriae, which describes in detail the instruction of the competentes or Baptismal candidates at Jerusalem during the eight weeks of Lent observed there...

(The entire section is 5099 words.)

L. C. Meijer (essay date 1974)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Meijer, L. C. “Some Remarks on Itinerarium Egeriae 28,4.” Vigiliae Christianae 28 (1974): 50-53.

[In the following essay, Meijer emends a corrupted passage of the Itinerarium Egeriae regarding the Lenten fast.]

In her report of the religious observances during Lent in Jerusalem Egeria rounds off her account of the fasting-rules with a final remark on the diet of the aputactitae: it consisted of only water and some flour-soup, bread, oil and fruit being forbidden, or in her own words, according to the only manuscript left containing this passage: esca autem eorum quadragesimarum diebus haec est, ut nec panem quid liberari non potest,...

(The entire section is 1644 words.)

Hagith Sivan (essay date 1988)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Sivan, Hagith. “Holy Land Pilgrimage and Western Audiences: Some Reflections on Egeria and Her Circle.” Classical Quarterly n.s. 38, no. 2 (1988): 528-35.

[In the following essay, Sivan examines internal evidence in the Itinerarium Egeriae in order to suggest that Egeria may not have been a member of any particular monastic order but rather part of a circle of unmarried women principally devoted to religious experience.]

In the vast literature centering on the Itinerarium Egeriae (IE) there is a serious lacuna.1 No attempt has been made to analyse the circle of readers to whom this remarkable document was addressed and for...

(The entire section is 4962 words.)

Andrew Palmer (essay date 1994)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Palmer, Andrew. “Egeria the Voyager, or The Technology of Remote Sensing in Late Antiquity.” In Travel Fact and Travel Fiction: Studies on Fiction, Literary Tradition, Scholarly Discovery, and Observation in Travel Writing, edited by Zweder von Martels, pp. 39-53. Leiden, Netherlands: E. J. Brill, 1994.

[In the following essay, Palmer collects the available information on Egeria, evaluates her manner of writing and perception in the Itinerarium Egeriae, and questions the view of her as an exotic traveler, arguing instead that she journeyed to Jerusalem in search of her “spiritual home.”]


In the twelfth...

(The entire section is 8215 words.)

Marcelle Thiébaux (essay date 1994)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Thiébaux, Marcelle. “A Pilgrim to the Holy Land: Egeria of Spain (381-384).” In The Writings of Medieval Women: An Anthology, edited by Marcelle Thiébaux, pp. 23-48. New York: Garland Publishing, 1994.

[In the following essay, Thiébaux presents the historical background to Egeria's pilgrimage, discusses Egeria's manner of describing her travel experiences, and translates several illustrative passages from the Itinerarium Egeriae.]

The last groans of Christian martyrs had scarcely died away, the last recorded execution in Palestine carried out in 310, when the great age of pilgrimage and relic hunting began. Late in the fourth century, an energetic woman...

(The entire section is 9533 words.)

Julia Bolton Holloway (essay date 1998)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Holloway, Julia Bolton. “Women Pilgrims I: Helena, Paula, Eutochium, Egeria.” In Jerusalem: Essays on Pilgrimage and Literature, pp. 31-39. New York: AMS Press, 1998.

[In the following excerpt, Holloway surveys the content of the extant text of Itinerarium Egeriae.]

Around a.d. 417, a Spanish nun, Egeria, is to be found at Mount Sinai, from there traveling to Jerusalem and Constantinople, in the footsteps of the prophets, of Christ, and of the Empress Helena.1

Let me begin with Egeria where her surviving, mutilated manuscript has us begin, in view of Mount Sinai.2 Egeria's account of her pilgrimages made Bible in hand...

(The entire section is 3875 words.)

John Wilkinson (essay date 1999)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Wilkinson, John. Introduction to Egeria's Travels to the Holy Land, 3rd edition, translated by John Wilkinson, pp. 1-5. Warminster, Eng.: Aris & Phillips Ltd, 1999.

[In the following excerpt, Wilkinson documents what is known of Egeria and remarks on the style and textual history of the Itinerarium Egeriae.]

The text of Egeria's Travels was lost for seven hundred years. And when, in the late nineteenth century in Italy, a manuscript was found, the only part left was the middle of the book. Either at the beginning or at the end the name of the pilgrim might have appeared, but it was lost. The guesses which scholars made about what she was called are...

(The entire section is 2195 words.)

Rachel Moriarty (essay date 2000)

(Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism)

SOURCE: Moriarty, Rachel. “‘Secular Men and Women’: Egeria's Lay Congregation in Jerusalem.” In The Holy Land, Holy Lands, and Christian History, edited by R. N. Swanson, pp. 55-66. Suffolk, England: The Boydell Press, 2000.

[In the following essay, Moriarty concentrates on what the Itinerarium Egeriae records of the Christian liturgy and congregation in fourth-century Jerusalem.]

Egeria's account of her journey to the holy places has been an invaluable source for study of many aspects of fourth-century Christianity, from liturgy and topography to clerical practice. Dr David Hunt … discusses the part played by monks in Egeria's ‘scriptural...

(The entire section is 4710 words.)