The Life of Saint Birgitta Essay example

The Life of Saint Birgitta Essay example

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It is rare in history, especially in the late medieval ages, to find a woman who is able to find her own way and make a name for herself without the aid of a man. However, Birgitta Bigersdotter did exactly that; she realized her potential and with the visions from God she was blessed with, she used everything she had and rose to become “one of the great saints of Scandinavia” (Lindqvist 71). Birgitta was the only woman in the fourteenth century who was made a saint and the only woman to start her own monastic order that is still relevant today (Morris 1). Saint Brigitta overcame the limitations placed on women of this era by turning toward religion. By proving her piety and “on the basis of an acknowledged sanctity and a theocratic equality, she was able to communicate effectively with emperors and popes, kings and bishops, women and men, children and servants” ("Birger Gregersson and Thomas Gascoigne: The Life of Saint Birgitta") How was it that a woman could rise to such heights in the male dominated medieval society? To answer that question one must look at the Swedish society at this time.
As far as Europe goes, Sweden could be considered a bit of a late bloomer. In many ways Sweden was falling behind its more advanced neighbors. Gone were the incredible years of Viking conquest, these were the years of suffering, trying to piece this country together. It seemed that everything was coming to Sweden much later than most other parts of Europe. Sweden did not have a common law until the mid fourteenth century, the capital, Stockholm was only established far in the thirteenth century, Christianity also arrived late, in the eleventh century (Morris 12). A benefit of this is that they avoided the struggle between church and the ru...


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...of the European Union (Lindqvist 72).


Works Cited

"Saint Bridget Of Sweden." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition (2013): 1.Academic Search Premier. Web. 29 Mar.2014.

Mazzoni, Cristina. "On Women, Holiness, And Middle Age." Magistra 19.2 (2013): 35-40. Academic Search Premier. Web. 29 Mar. 2014.
Morris, Bridget. St. Birgitta of Sweden. Boydell & Brewer, 1999. Print.
“BRIDGET OF SWEDEN, Saint." (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 29 Mar. 2014.
"Saint Birgitta; Light of the North." Swedish Press 05 2003: 18. ProQuest. 30 Mar. 2014 
Bulter, Alban The Lives of the Saints. (1866): 9-12
Zehringer, William C. "St. Birgitta Of Sweden's Image Of Perfection."New Oxford Review 76.11 (2009): 32-35.Academic Search Complete. Web. 30 Mar. 2014.

"Birger Gregersson and Thomas Gascoigne: The Life of Saint Birgitta." Vox Benedictina, 8.2 (1991): 323-322.

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