Two famous late medieval depictions depict St Edmund King, martyr and shrine, linking his worship to king's prayer, and in Lydgate's illustrated poem The Lives of Saints, Henry VI Richard II kneels before shrine, while in Wilton's diptych, "Edmund" is one of three saints representing Richard II to Virgin Mary.
From eleventh century on, Edmund was worshiped by rulers, including Edward Confessor. The royal pilgrimages of twelfth and thirteenth centuries combined visits to shrines of Westminster, Canterbury, Bury, and shrines of East Anglia, while Edmund's standards were raised and prayers for victories in battle were raised.
Despite growing interest in Saint George, Edmund's commemoration by king continued well into fourteenth century, and saint was venerated along with others, especially Edward and Becket. I believe that this communal worship is primary way king of England calls on saints, and importance of St Edmund in king's religious activities will be linked to sacred kingship.
From 855 to 869, King Edmund of East Anglia became a center of worship, and he erected a pious idol in tenth and eleventh centuries and then continued to roam throughout Middle Ages. In Lydgate's illustrated poem The Lives of Saints, dedicated to king in 1439, young Henry VI, wearing a crown and a red-trimmed gold robe, kneels in prayer before a golden altar with two monks and four members of royal family present.
A Wilton diptych, dedicated to King Richard II in late 1390s, depicts Edmund as one of three saints (the others being Edward Confessor and John Baptist) representing ruler to Virgin Mary. The author believes that royal family's loyalty to Edmund can be continued by examining king's efforts to maintain religious aura of saint's predecessor, as well as evidence of royal family visiting Bury St Edmunds Abbey and commemorating saint. be under consideration.
On one hand, royal connection with St Edmund and his cult could be connected with buildings and structures of church built in his honor at Bury St Edmunds, and which could be used for benefit of development there, as well as legal rights and privileges of a growing religious community. Examples of Bury's gifts of architectural work can be found from Edmunds' early days, when members of royal family played an important role in providing and maintaining elements vital to a thriving cult.
King Æthelstan established a religious house in 925 to care for remains of saints, and in first half of 11th century cult found support from King Canute, whose Danish origins suggest that from "Reconciliation of Anglo-Saxons and Danish interests may have been a gesture atonement, as Whip's father, Swain Falkbeard, is believed to have died after seeing a vision of a saint armed with a spear.
In 1020, Canute built first stone church in Bury, which eventually became one of largest Benedictine monasteries in England. This grant was backed by statutory rights, including jurisdiction for developing city of Bury.
The rights of abbey were extended to Suffolk by Canute's successor, King Edward Confessor, who was himself later canonized as a holy ruler and widely revered. in which Canute defeated Anglo-Saxon ruler Edmund Ironside.
King John's decision to return common property during general confiscation of church property in 1208, which lasted until Prohibition began in 1214, is further evidence of royal respect for abbey. Abbey chroniclers say king did this out of reverence for saint, abbey respected idea that king was interested in his saint, and Abbot Baldwin received William II in 1095 before proceeding to translate Edmund's relics. Rufus) permission.
The author contends that enduring nature of this relationship, and importance that kings placed on granting privilege of venerating their favorite saints, was reflected in reign of Richard II when king granted Bury Abbey and right of abbey to retain abbey time during an abbey vacancy doing so "out of loyalty to Saint Edmund".
A direct way to establish a link between monarchy and worship of a saint is for king to visit chapel where saint is buried. For many kings, there was evidence of a pilgrimage to Bury St Edmunds, or at least a royal visit, which increased likelihood of prayers and offerings being made at shrine.
Both Edward Confessor and William Conqueror granted or confirmed lands and rights of abbey, Abbe Baldwin, who may have been present at Confessor's deathbed, who later became Conqueror's physician, may have played same role for Confessor's role. When William arrived in Bury, he was seen approaching shrine of St Edmund with his head bowed, and Matilda of Flanders visited Bury St Edmunds more than once with her husband William, making gifts for society.
After Matilda's death in 1083, a conquistador presented abbey with a gift for her soul, and in 1188, Henry II arrived less than a month after taking oath to join crusade in Bury. After his coronation in 1189, Richard I "piously sought prayers of St. Edmund". He may be in Bury on All Saints' Day, November 20th.
Henry III is known to have visited Bury at least fifteen times during his reign, he often did so at November feasts, and in September 1272, when king was staying at abbey, he was shown to be shocked by illness, taking life here. Henry III died at Westminster and was buried there in abbey on feast of St Edmund (November 20). , and several times during his reign he also attempted to celebrate Edmund's feasts when he was away from abbey.
For example, in 1236, when donations were made on behalf of king and queen, and in 1248, when gifts were presented to shrine, "because there was no king that year." In 1253, when Henry and his son Edmund fell ill, they made sacrifices in Bury, and in 1257, Queen Eleanor of Provence and their children made a gift on Henry's behalf.
Sacrifice can be combined with other cult intercessions, as many rulers saw when, on Easter Eve in 1177, Henry II accompanied Philip I, Earl of Flanders, to Becket's Temple at Canterbury. After Easter, Henry went successively to Bury St. Edmunds, and then to site of tomb of St. Ethelter, Queen of Northumbria and daughter of Anna, King of East Angles of Erie.
In 1194, on his return from crusade and captivity, Richard I made a quick visit to Canterbury and Bury St. Edmunds. After his coronation in 1199, King John undertook a joint pilgrimage from coronation church at Westminster to Bury St Edmunds and on to Canterbury.
He may also have been sheltered at St Albans, burial place of first English martyr of this period, and his visit to Bury is said to have been "driven by oath and piety" and accompanied by numerous visits to him. Recognition of gift of predecessor. Likewise, link between ruler and worship could be established by re-enacting events of national or dynastic significance at saint's feast, or by using items associated with saint on such occasions.
When Richard, Earl of Cornwall, second son of King John and younger brother of King Henry III, was elected King of Rome in 1257, he began receiving that title on St Edmund's Interpreter's Day, 29 April. First he went to Bury. Saint Edmunds. In its account of events of 1292, Chronicle of Bury states that Edward I appointed John Balliol King of Scotland on St Edmund's Day, 20 November.
This holiday marks date of inauguration in 1376 of future Richard II, who succeeded his father Edward as Prince of Wales, Duke of Cornwall and Earl of Chester. Associating with saint on important dynastic occasions could backfire if anything went wrong, and a year later, at Richard's coronation, his regalia included shoes described as Saint Edmund's.
They disappeared in confusion after ten-year-old king fell asleep during ceremony and he was brought back to Palace of Westminster by Sir Simon Burghley, chronicler Adam Usk (Adam Usk, without specifically mentioning Edmund, said he would lose one of shoes he wore to coronation, and then explained that this would be a harbinger of a peasant uprising.
Extensive evidence of devotion to saints can be found during reign of Henry III, who made pilgrimages to shrines in East Anglia, including Bury St Edmunds, St Albans, Ely, part or all of Bromholm, site of True Cross relic, part Screen, and Walsingham, center of cult of Virgin Mary.
Earlier examples of this kind of travel can be found in Henry's rare period, 1224, when he traveled from Bury St Edmunds to Ely and back to St O'Neill during a week in April Albans.
Saint Edmund was a prominent saint and caught attention of Henry III during his travels, as evidenced by his decision in 1245 to name his second son Edmund. Before birth, there is again evidence of a combination of worship of saint, supposedly to protect Queen Eleanor of Provence and her child, two nuns brought relics of St Edmund of Abingdon to Westminster Cathedral and paid £10 for it.
At time of queen's birth, Antiphon of Bury St Edmunds was sung to memory, and king happily wrote to Henry of Rushbrook, abbot of Bury St Edmunds, announcing prince's birth. Here again we see evidence that St. Edmund was one of many saints whom king turned to for joint intercession, in this case for a successful birth.
Royal bounty associated with safe birth of babies can also be found at Westminster Abbey, a shrine to Henry III's favorite among saints, Edward Confessor, after whom his eldest son was named, in Shrine of St. Thomas. Becket in Canterbury and St Augustine's Abbey in Canterbury.
Although care must be taken when judging monumentality of chosen name, Henry III was not only one to name one of his sons Edmund. If not custom of his Anglo-Saxon predecessors, then name was at least used in royal family, as is evident from choice of Edmund as name of eldest son and heir of Edward Elder (the Anglo-Saxon king).
The choice was made at a time when issuance of Saint Edmund commemorative coin indicated development of a nascent cult that could become a rallying point for Anglo-Saxon community and provide protection from Scandinavian incursions as well as opportunities for integration. Edmund Ironside also bore saint's name, although we have no way of knowing at this time if there was a commemorative target.
Following example of Henry III, other later medieval rulers, Edward I and Edward III also bestowed saint's name on those chosen for their sons.
In twentieth century, faint echoes can be found in fourth name of fourth son of King George V and Queen Tecmari, Prince George, Duke of Kent, named George Edward Alexander Ed Mon, name Edmund is at least still a name that can be given a member of royal family.
Royal worship of St Edmund may also have included widespread generosity in form of gifts of merchandise, ample evidence is provided by piety of Henry III, records of Henry III's government in 1236 show gift of Bury St Edmund. Munds paid £716 to provide £300 of wax to make 300 candles to be placed around St Edmund's shrine on his feast day.
After two years, 500 pounds of wax for 1000 candles will be given to parishioners, and these donations are registered along with donations to other saints and places of worship. In 1238 these included Becket Altar in Canterbury, and in 1240 a donation was made in honor of St Edmund to Walsingham Church, an important center dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
Henry's bounty also included two gold brooches and twelve oboes donated by king to sanctuary in 1242, and in 1251 an additional forty-four marks for purchase of four silver candlesticks and thirty marks for use of serving bowls. wine on new altar and at masses in various parish churches and hospitals under jurisdiction of Bury St Edmunds Abbey.
Royal piety in honor of St. Edmunds is manifested not only at place of his burial and in temple in Bury St. Edmunds.
Religious donations from William Conqueror included patronage that helped link English saint to French royal patron Saint-Denis, and conqueror bought a tower at Saint-Denis Abbey, although this was during king's lifetime. destroyed, but inside there is an altar dedicated to Edmund, which probably contains relics of saint, and scenes from St. Vita are depicted on stone capitals installed in crypt of monastery.
At same time, these items were ordered not only for tomb of St. Edward in Bury,as evidenced by inventory of Westminster Abbey relating to tomb of St. Edward Confessor, registered in 1267, among items on list is an image of St. Edmund in a crown, adorned with many precious stones, worth 86 pounds sterling.
No matter how much money they spend on a monastery, they consider it right, because monastery for them is a believable existence, and what money is before faith.