Abstract

Abstract:

In a well-known scene from the Passion of Perpetua and Felicity, Perpetua has a vision in which she is given cheese by a heavenly shepherd. This paper argues that the cheese which Perpetua receives is eucharistic, and that the vision is best understood as a heavenly rite of initiation. Scholarly views of the reception of cheese as essentially interchangeable with the reception of milk cannot be supported. Perpetua’s cheese should be interpreted as eucharistic even if it does not reflect any actual liturgical practice involving cheese, as both textual and contextual evidence make a eucharistic reading compelling. The biblical images in the vision, including the transformation of milk into cheese, support this liturgical reading. The article concludes by arguing that the Passio as a whole envisions martyrdom as a public liturgy.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1086-3184
Print ISSN
1067-6341
Pages
pp. 175-202
Launched on MUSE
2020-06-10
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.