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Imagining Jerusalem in the Medieval West$
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Lucy Donkin and Hanna Vorholt

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265048

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265048.001.0001

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Adomnán’s Plans in the Context of his Imagining ‘the Most Famous City’

Adomnán’s Plans in the Context of his Imagining ‘the Most Famous City’

(p.14) (p.15) 1 Adomnán’s Plans in the Context of his Imagining ‘the Most Famous City’
Imagining Jerusalem in the Medieval West

Thomas O’loughlin

British Academy

Adomnán of Iona's work on the holy places of Jerusalem and surrounding regions (De locis sanctis) has been used as a guide to seventh-century Palestine. In particular, its plans of monuments such as the Church of the Holy Sepulchre have been used by archaeologists for information about buildings, while their form interests historians of cartography. However, these plans must be read with the book's several purposes in mind. They attempt to harmonize biblical data (and Adomnán's other literary sources) visually. In addition, they project elements of Iona's monastic liturgy into an alien liturgical space. The plans are not simply illustrations to clarify the text but constitute a distinct, parallel text of their own, with elements shown that Adomnán would not have asserted in writing. They indicate that, for Adomnán, there were different orders of verification for written texts and visual materials such as plans.

Keywords:   Adomnán, Iona, plans, Jerusalem, Holy Sepulchre, Bible, cartography, liturgy, seventh century

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