Building Rome Saint by Saint: Sanctity From Abroad at Home in the City, Sixth-Ninth Century


Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships




This project investigates the importation and integration of saints' cults from abroad in early medieval Rome. Case studies examine the various communities and circumstances which brought "foreign" (primarily Eastern Mediterranean) saints to Rome and illustrate how these cults, adapted to their new surroundings, helped renegotiate the city's ancient legacy of Empire, its relationship to Constantinople, and Rome's (and the papacy's) place in Christian history. In turn, many of these cults were exported north of the Alps, securing Rome's claims to preeminence. This process reveals a city enmeshed in a wider world, whose distinctive profile of sanctity was not autochthonous or predestined, but which developed gradually, drawing on the far-flung resources of the medieval world.