At our recent Lá Fhéile Bríde celebration, Dr. Dorothy Africa shared what is known (and what remains unknown) about St. Brigid, through study of the saint’s hagiography. A number of people were interested in reading a “hard copy” of her talk, and she was kind enough to give it to us, to share. Click here to download a PDF of Dr. Africa’s lecture.
FYI: Hagiography was an important literary genre in the early Christian church. It provided some informational history, along with the more inspirational stories and legend. A hagiography of a saint can include a biography, a description of the saint’s deeds and/or miracles, or an account of the saint’s martyrdom — or be a combination of these. Ireland is notable in its rich hagiographical tradition, and for the large amount of material which was produced during the Middle Ages. In Ireland, hagiographies were written in both Latin and, later, in the native tongue.