Chapter

Sainthood Denied

Stephen Haliczer

in Between Exaltation and Infamy

Published in print September 2002 | ISBN: 9780195148633
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199869923 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195148630.003.0006
Sainthood Denied

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In a society that valued social status, lower‐class mystics tended to be regarded as ‘false.’ They were frequently subjected to the Inquisition, and, as many were uneducated and thus illiterate, they were not well acquainted with orthodox catechism and were often accused of heresy. Further, these ‘false’ mystics rarely benefited from the instruction and support of an elite spiritual advisor. Rather, the poorer mystics tended to have an unstable relationship with their confessors, who often were not well educated themselves. While some ‘false’ mystics found supporters within the aristocracy, they rarely secured support from the ecclesiastical hierarchy.

Keywords: false mystics; heresy; illiterate; Inquisition; lower class; social status; spiritual advisor; supporters

Chapter.  10983 words. 

Subjects: Christianity

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