When Ego Was Imago (Visualising the Middle Ages)

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When Ego Was Imago (Visualising the Middle Ages)

When Ego Was Imago Visualising the Middle Ages Edited by Eva Frojmovic, University of Leeds (UK) Editorial Board Pro

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When Ego Was Imago

Visualising the Middle Ages Edited by

Eva Frojmovic, University of Leeds (UK) Editorial Board

Professor Madeline Caviness, Tufts University (USA) Professor Catherine Harding, University of Victoria (Canada) Professor Diane Wolfthal, Arizona State University (USA)

VOLUME 3

When Ego Was Imago Signs of Identity in the Middle Ages

By

Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak

LEIDEN • BOSTON 2011

On the cover: Seal of Ansel of Garlande, lord of Tournan-en-Brie, appended to a charter of September 1192; Paris, Archives nationales, L 460 no 1. With kind permission of the Archives nationales. This book is printed on acid-free paper. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Bedos Rezak, Brigitte. When ego was imago : signs of identity in the Middle Ages / by Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak. p. cm. — (Visualising the Middle Ages, ISSN 1874-0448 ; v. 3) Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 978-90-04-19217-1 (hbk. : acid-free paper) 1. Middle Ages. 2. Middle Ages—Sources. 3. Charters—Europe—History—To 1500. 4. Seals (Numismatics)— Europe—History—To 1500. 5. Identity (Psychology)—Europe—History—To 1500. 6. Signs and symbols—Social aspects—Europe—History—To 1500. 7. Visual communication—Europe—History—To 1500. 8. Individuality—Europe—History—To 1500. 9. Interpersonal communication—Europe—History—To 1500. 10. Europe— Social conditions—To 1492. I. Title. CB353.B384 2010 909.07—dc22 2010041725

ISSN 1874-0448 ISBN 978 90 04 19217 1 Copyright 2011 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands. Koninklijke Brill NV incorporates the imprints Brill, Hotei Publishing, IDC Publishers, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers and VSP. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, translated, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission from the publisher. Authorization to photocopy items for internal or personal use is granted by Koninklijke Brill NV provided that the appropriate fees are paid directly to The Copyright Clearance Center, 222 Rosewood Drive, Suite 910, Danvers, MA 01923, USA. Fees are subject to change.

In Memory of my Father Jacques Bedos (1925–2007) ‫זכרונו לברכה‬

CONTENTS List of Plates ...................................................................................... List of Abbreviations ........................................................................ Acknowledgments ............................................................................

xi xxv xxvii

Introduction ......................................................................................

1

PART I

SOURCES AND METHODS Chapter One Beyond the Text: Medieval Documentary Practices ........................................................................................ Medieval Charters, Then and Now ............................................ Documentary, Production and Conservation .......................... Diplomatic Discourse and the Performance of Charters ....... Acculturation to Documentary Practices ................................. The Authentication of Charters: Persons, Signs, Seals ............ The Scope of Medieval Charter Referentiality ......................... Chapter Two Toward an Archaeology of the Medieval Charter ... The Archival Profile of Saint-Fursy of Péronne ....................... The Production and Reproduction of Charters at Notre-Dame of Homblières ................................................... The Dispersed Charters of the Counts of Ponthieu ................ Authority, Authenticity, and the Intertextuality of Diplomatic Discourse .................................................................................. Narrative Form and Material Format: A Mutual Engagement .............................................................................. Chapter Three Sign Theory, Medieval and Modern ................. The Role of Theory in Sigillography .......................................... Evaluating Sign Theories ............................................................. A Mutually Challenging Encounter: Semiotic Anthropology and the Middle Ages ...............................................................

9 9 13 17 22 26 31 37 40 44 46 49 50 55 55 60 65

viii

contents PART II

IMAGO Chapter Four The King’s Sign ......................................................... A Merovingian Icon: The Royal Seal ........................................... Carolingian Rulers: The Power of Royal and Imperial Seals .... Post-Carolingian Kingship: Sealing in Transition ..................... Capetian Kings: The End of a Prerogative and the Re-Invention of the Royal Seal ................................................

75 76 78 84 90

Chapter Five Eucharistic Theology and Episcopal Signature ..... 95 Episcopal Modes of Communication .......................................... 96 The Debate over Real Presence and the Appearance of Episcopal Seals ........................................................................... 102 Chapter Six Medieval Identity: Subject, Object, Agency ............ A Network of Schools and Chanceries ........................................ The Augustinian Paradox and its Role in Scholarly Controversy ................................................................................ Personhood and Individuality ...................................................... The Ego of Diplomatic Discourse ................................................. Persona in Sign and Metaphor ..................................................... Ego to Imago .................................................................................... From Identity to Stereotype ..........................................................

109 113

Chapter Seven Images of Identity and the Identity of Images ... Images and the Senses: From Gregory the Great to Guillaume Durand .................................................................... The Currency of Imago: Augustine, Byzantine Anti-Iconoclasm, and Twelfth-Century Scholarship ........... Mirror ............................................................................................. Imprint ............................................................................................. Replica .............................................................................................

161

121 129 132 140 150 152

161 171 180 186 202

contents

ix

PART III

EGO Chapter Eight Difformitas: Invective, Individuality, Identity ..... The Invectiva of Arnulf of Lisieux ................................................ Strategies of Character Assassination .......................................... The Rhetoric of Vilification .......................................................... ‘Difformitas’ as Individuality ........................................................

209 210 216 220 225

Chapter Nine The Semiotics of Personality in the Middle Ages ... Identity and Individuality ............................................................. Individuality and Personhood ...................................................... Urban Identity and the Ideal City ................................................ The Saint and the City ................................................................... Urban Identity and the Historical City ....................................... The Individuality of Human Collectives .....................................

231 233 235 238 243 247 249

Conclusion ........................................................................................... 253 Bibliography ......................................................................................... 257 Index ..................................................................................................... 287 Plates ......................................................................................... (after 296)

LIST OF PLATES Note: The catalog entries by Louis Douët d’Arcq and Germain Demay refer to collections of casts, which are located in the Service des sceaux of the Archives nationales (Paris); these casts are of original seals housed in a wide variety of French archives. Call numbers to Douët d’Arcq’s collection of casts, of seals from the Archives nationales, are preceded by the letter D. Call numbers to Demay’s collection of casts, of seals from the region of Flanders, are preceded by the letter F. Call numbers to the « Collection supplément à la collection des moulages des sceaux des Archives nationales » are preceded by the letter S. I. Paris, Archives nationales, L 809 no 34: 1215, Donation of revenues to the abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés by Robert of Braines, son of Robert, count of Dreux, and his wife, Alienor. Left: Robert’s seal displays an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a checky: + S’(IGILLUM) R’(OBERTI): FILII: ROBERTI:D(OMI)NI. DROCAR(UM) ET BRAN(E) The seal of Robert is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1548. Right: Alienor’s seal displays a standing woman holding a fleur de lis and a bird: [SI]GILLUM AENOR UXORIS ROBERTI DE BREN[NE]. See below, Plate VIII, a focused illustration of this seal. The seal of Alienor is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 2048. Alienor’s seal is further described in Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, « Collection supplément à la collection des moulages des sceaux des Archives nationales, » no 2146. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

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II. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 15: 1206, Chirograph in which Matthew III, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise and grand chamberlain of France, and Ansel, lord of L’Isle-Adam settled their dispute about various tolls. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 816. Right: Matthew’s seal displays an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: + SIGILL(UM). MATHEI.COMITIS: DE BELLEMONTIS: The seal of Matthew is described in Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1052. Left: Ansel’s seal is armorial: fess, in chief a martlet: + SIGILLUM ANSELMI DE INSULA. The seal of Ansel is described in Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 2449. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. III. Paris, Archives nationales, AE/II/101 (K 19 no 5/2): 1058, Henry, king of France (1008–1060), protects the abbey of Saint-Maurdes-Fossés from his own cooks’ pressure tactics when acquiring the abbey’s cattle for the royal table. The seal is missing. Signatory crosses of the king, of Queen Anne of Kiev, and of their two sons Philip and Robert are present on the diploma. This document is edited by Jules Tardif, Monuments historiques (Paris, 1866; reprint, 1977), no 275. Photo Archives nationales, http://www.culture.gouv.fr/public/mistral/caran_fr, with kind permission. IV. Pontoise, Archives départementales du Val-d’Oise, 9H81: 1123, Peter of Dammartin, bishop of Beauvais, having just received the priory of Saint-Aubin of Chambly from Count Matthew I of Beaumont-sur-Oise, endows the abbey of Saint-Martin of Pontoise with the priory. The seal of Peter of Dammartin displays a seated figure in episcopal vestments, holding a book and a crozier: + PETRUS BELVACENSIS EPISCOPUS The seal of Bishop Peter is described in Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, « Collection supplément à la collection des moulages des sceaux des Archives nationales, » nos 2856 and 4624. Photo Bruno Millien, with kind permission of the Archives départementales du Val-d’Oise.

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V. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de matrices originales, no 18: early fourteenth-century seal-matrix of the chapter of the collegial church of Saint-Quiriace of Provins, accompanied with medieval wax impressions originally issued from this matrix but detached from the documents to which they were once affixed. The seal matrix displays an episcopal bust in vestments, holding a cross and a crozier: + SIGILLUM: SANCTI: QUIRIACI: PRUVINI. The seal matrix is described in Clément Blanc, «Répertoire numérique informatique sur fiches de la collection des matrices des Archives nationales, » no 18 and in Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 7284. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. VI. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 3, 1180: the seal of King Philip Augustus (1180–1223) is appended to a confirmation by the king of a donation made by Edive of Moucy to Count Matthew III of Beaumont. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 302. This is Philip Augustus’ first seal of majesty, or great seal: PHILIPPUS FRANCORUM REX. The seal is described by Dalas, Les sceaux des rois et de régence, no 70, and by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 38. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. VII. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 11, 1202: the seal of Matthew II of Montmorency, constable of France, is appended to an agreement reached between him and Matthew III, count of Beaumont and grand chamberlain of France concerning tolls to be paid by the inhabitants of Beaumont when they brought merchandise to the lands of Montmorency. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 660. The seal of Matthew of Montmorency displays an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a cross cantoned with four eagles: + SIGILL(UM). MATEI DE MONTEMORENCIACO The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 2942. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

xiv

list of plates

VIII. Wax seal impression (left), and plaster cast (right), of the seal of Alienor, wife of Robert of Braine. For full reference to this seal and to the document to which it is appended, see plate I above. The mold for the plaster cast was taken in the late nineteenth century, before the original wax had deteriorated. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. IX. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 6781. Plaster cast of the seal of Peter Lombard, bishop of Paris, taken from an original wax seal impression dated 1159. The seal of Peter Lombard displays a standing figure in episcopal vestments: + SIGILL(UM) MAGISTRI PETRI PARISIENSIS EPISCOPI The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 6781. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. X. Paris, Archives nationales, L 809 no 28: 1176, Hugh, abbot of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, founds annual prayers for the soul of Brother Simon. Hugh’s seal displays a standing figure in abbatial costume, holding a crozier and a book: [SIG]ILL(UM). HUGONIS ABBAT [IS . . .] S(AN)C(T)I GERMANI PARISIENS [. . .] The seal of Abbot Hugh is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 3, no 8902. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XI. Paris, Archives nationales, L 809 no 1: 1234, Sale by Aimery ‘Veltrio” of Issy of his rights associated with land held by the abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Left: The seal of Aimery is armorial: a greyhound passant, in chief a label of four points: [. . .]SIGILL[. . . .] LE VIAUDRE. Right: The seal has an epigraphic counter-seal, displaying a fleur de lis. The seal and counter-seal of Aimery le Viaudre of Issy are described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 2470. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

list of plates

xv

XII. Rouen, Archives départementales de la Seine-Maritime, 7 H 2151: 1085, William the Conqueror, duke of Normandy and king of England, confirms the abbey of Fécamp in some of its English possessions. William’s seal is missing but his signatory cross (signo sancte crucis and sigillo meo cum regali auctoritate confirmo) is still there, together with those of several witnesses, including Lanfranc of Bec, Count Alan of Brittany, and Robert count of Meulan. From http://www.archivesdepartementales76.net/viewer.php? pic=img/photos/7h2151.jpg, with kind permission. XIII. Paris, Archives nationales, LL 1352, fol. 121v–122r: Fifteenthcentury cartulary of Saint-Martin des Champs, Paris. Copies of charters in the name of Matthew II (d. 1177), count of Beaumont, in which the testimonial clauses have been abbreviated or elided. See critical editions of these documents in Depoin, Recueil de chartes et documents de Saint-Martin des champs, vol. 2 (Paris, 1913), nos 372 (ca. 1160) and 438 (bef. 1177). Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XIV. From Arts et actes de France (Paris, 1979, p. 62 no 1); Paris, Archives nationales, AE II 26: 710, Judgment by King Childebert III (d. 711) allowing the abbey of Saint-Denis to receive in full the tolls from the fair of Saint-Denis. Only traces of the applied seal remain on this document, which is edited in Tardif, Monuments historiques, no 44. Plaster cast of the seal of Childebert III, taken from an original wax seal impression dated 694–695: Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 7. Childebert III’s seal displays a facing head with long hair parted in the middle, between two crosses: + C[HILDEBERTU]Z REX FRA(N)CORUM. The seal is described by Dalas, Sceaux des rois et de régence, nos 8–9, and Douët d’Arcq, Collection de sceaux, vol. 1, nos 7–8. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XV. Facsimile of a diploma of Emperor Louis the Pious (778–840), who confirms in 839 a barter transaction involving the abbot of Fulda, Rabanus Maurus, and his vassal Helmeric (original document: Marburg, Staatsarchiv).

xvi

list of plates Applied seal of Louis the Pious, impressed from an antique intaglio and displaying a profile on the right: + XPE PROTEGE HLUDOVVICUM IMP(ERATOREM) The seal is described by Dalas, Sceaux des rois et de régence, nos 19–20, and Douët d’Arcq, Collection de sceaux, vol. 1, no 17. From http://geschichte.digitale-sammlungen.de/kaiserurkunden/chronologie/chronologie800, with kind permission.

XVI. Partial facsimile of a diploma of King Philip I: 1095, subscriptions of the witnesses and the royal seal, applied inverted (original document: Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Collection Bourgogne, vol. 79, no 162). King Philip is using his second great seal, which displays a crowned figure seated in majesty, holding a short rod and a scepter topped with a fleur de lis: P/HILIPPUS D(E)I GR(ACI)A / FRANCORUM REX The seal is described by Dalas, Sceaux des rois et de régence, no 64, and Douët d’Arcq, Collection de sceaux, vol. 1, no 34. From Alain de Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique française et pontificale, Album, vol. 1 (Paris, 1929), pl. XXXVII. XVII. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 152. Plaster cast of the seal of Adele of Champagne, dowager queen of Louis VII, taken from an original wax seal impression dated 1190. The seal of Adele displays the standing figure of a woman, crowned, wearing a coat over her dress and holding a fleur de lis: + SIGILLUM ADELE DEI GR(ATI)A REGINE FRANCORUM The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 152. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XVIII. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 19: 1218, sale by Payen Presles, lord of Franconville, of woodland to John, count of Beaumont. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 1329. Payen’s seal is armorial: a cross on a checky:

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+ SIGILLUM. PAGANI. DE. PRAIERS The seal of Payen is described in Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 3309. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XIX. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 20: seal of Henry, abbot of Saint-Denis and conventual seal of the abbey of saint-Denis, both appended to a chirograph, dated 1217, recording an agreement between the abbey of Saint-Denis and John, count of Beaumont (1164–1222), about forest rights and usages. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 1231. Right: The conventual seal displays a seated figure in ecclesiastical vestments, holding a book and a crozier: + SIGILLUM SANCTI DYONISII ARCHIEPISCOPI On the counter-seal to this seal, see below Plate XXIV. The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 3, no 8370. Left: The seal of abbot Henry displays a standing figure in abbatial costume, holding a book and crozier: + SIGILL(UM) HENRICI ABBATIS BEATI DYONISII On the counter-seal to this seal, see below Plate XXIV. The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 3, no 9017. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XX. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, F 138 and 142. Sulfur casts of the seals and counterseals of Philip of Alsace, count of Flanders, and of his second wife, Matilda of Portugal, taken from original wax seal impressions dated 1170 (Philip) and ca. 1197 (Matilda). Upper right: The obverse of Matilda’s double-sided seal displays a shield bearing the standing figure of a woman holding a flower: + SI[GIL]L[U]M RE[GIN]E MATHIL[D]IS Lower right: The reverse of Matilda’s double-sided seal displays a shield bearing five coats of arms (Portugal ) arranged in the shape of a cross:

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list of plates + C[OM]ITISSE [FL]AND[RIE] Matilda’s seal is described by Germain Demay, Inventaire des sceaux de la Flandre, 2 vols (Paris, 1873), vol. 1, no 142. Upper left: The seal of Philip of Alsace displays an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: + SIGILLUM. PHILIPPI.COMITIS. FLANDRIE Lower left: Philip of Alsace’s counter-seal displays the coat of arms of Flanders, a lion: + ET VIROMANDIE Philip’s seal is described by Demay, Inventaire des sceaux de la Flandre, vol. 1, no 138. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

XXI. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, F 197, 1555, 1556, D 436. Plaster casts of the seals of Baldwin, count of Hainaut (from an original wax seal impression dated 1182), of Gerard of Saint-Aubert (from original wax seal impressions dated 1185 and 1194), and of Louis, count of Sancerre (from an original wax seal impression dated 1230). Upper right: First seal of Gerard of Saint-Aubert, displaying an equestrian in arms: + SIGILLUM.GERARDI.SANTI.OBERTI Gerard’s first seal is described by Demay, Inventaire des sceaux de la Flandre, vol. 1, no 1555. Lower right: Seal of Louis, count of Sancerre, displaying an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a bend cotised: + \ S’(IGILLUM). LUDOVICI COMITIS SACRI CESARIS [..] Louis’s seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 436. Upper left: Seal of Baldwin, count of Hainaut, displaying an equestrian in arms: + SIGILLUM. BALDVINI.COMITIS.HAINOENSIS Baldwin’s seal is described by Demay, Inventaire des sceaux de la Flandre, vol. 1, no 197. Lower left: Second seal of Gerard of Saint-Aubert, displaying an equestrian in arms, the shield chevronny with a bordure:

list of plates

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+ SIGILLUM: GERARDI: S(AN)C(T)I: OBERTI Gerard’s second seal is described by Demay, Inventaire des sceaux de la Flandre, vol. 1, no 1556. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXII. Laon, Archives départementales de l’Aisne, H 343: 1103, Enguerrand, bishop of Laon, assigns a church to the hermits who had built it. The seal is missing; the sealing clause reads: ut autem hec constitutio firma et illibata in perpetuum permaneat, hoc privilegio, nostra imagine munito,. . . . firmare precepimus. The document is edited by Dufour-Malbezin, Actes des évêques de Laon, no 55. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives départementales. XXIII. Paris, Archives nationales, J 224 no 12: 1376: seal of the Châtelet of Paris, appended by a colorful flow of silk to an act of Hugh Aubriot, Provost of Paris. The seal of the Châtelet of Paris, seat of the royal jurisdiction of the Prévôté of Paris, displays a large fleur de lis fleuronnée between a small castle (châtelet) and a shield party per pale, a semy of fleurs de lis (France) and a bend cotised potent-counterpotent (Champagne). The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 4462. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXIV. Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 17: seal of Henry, abbot of Saint-Denis and conventual seal of the abbey of Saint-Denis, both appended to a chirograph, dated 1210, recording an agreement between the abbey of Saint-Denis and the count of Beaumont, about forest revenues. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 938. Upper right: The conventual seal displays a seated figure in ecclesiastical vestments, holding a book and a crozier: + SIGILLUM SANCTI DYONISII ARCHIEPISCOPI Lower right: the counter seal to the conventual seal displays two heads in profile, facing each other:

xx

list of plates + RUSTICI ET ELEUTHERII The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 3, no 8370. Upper left: The seal of Abbot Henry displays a standing figure in abbatial costume, holding a book and crozier: + SIGILL(UM) HENRICI ABBATIS BEATI DYONISII Lower left: The counter-seal to Henry’s seal displays a bearded head, turned to the right: + DYONISI(US) ARIOPAGITA The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 3, no 9017. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

XXV. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 1050, 1051, 1052. Plaster casts of the seals of Mathew II, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise (from an original wax seal impression dated 1173), Mathew III, count of Beaumont (from an original wax seal impression dated 1177), and of Eleanor of Vermandois (from an original wax seal impression dated 1177). Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 6: 1189, Agreement between Hugh, abbot of Saint-Denis and Matthew III, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise, sealed with Matthew’s second seal, and a counter-seal. The document is edited by Teulet, Layettes du Trésor des chartes, vol. 1, no 359. Upper right: Second seal of Matthew III, displaying an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: + SIGILL’(UM). MATHEI.COMITIS.DE BELLEMONTIS. Lower right: Counter-seal to the second seal of Matthew III, displaying a shield bearing a lion: + S(IGILLUM) MATHEI COMIT(IS) BELLEMONT(IS) Matthew’s second seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1052. Upper middle: First seal of Matthew III, displaying an equestrian in arms:

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SI.(GILLUM) MATHEI COMITIS BELLIM(ONTIS) Matthew’s first seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1051. Lower Middle: seal of Eleanor of Vermandois, wife of Matthew III, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise. This seal is used as a counter-seal to the first seal of Matthew III. It displays the standing figure of a woman: + SIGILLUM HELIENORE COMITISSE BOMONTE Eleonor’s seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1053. Upper left: Seal of Matthew II, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise, displaying an equestrian in arms: + SIGILLUM MATHEI COMITIS DE MONTE The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1050. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXVI. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 1054, 1055, 1056. Plaster casts of the seals of Philip of Beaumont (from an original wax seal impression dated 1190), and of John, count of Beaumont (from original wax seal impression dated 1200 and 1217), both brothers of Mathew III (d. ca. 1208), count of Beaumont-sur-Oise Paris, Archives nationales, J 168 no 15; on this document and its seals, see above plate II. Upper right: second seal of Matthew III; see above, plate XXV. Lower right: second seal of John, as count of Beaumont-surOise, displaying an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: + S(IGILLUM): IOH(ANN)IS: COMITIS: BELLIMONTIS: The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1056. Upper left: seal of Philip of Beaumont, displaying an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: [. . . .]I. DE. BELLOMONTE The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1054.

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list of plates Lower left: first seal of John of Beaumont, as younger brother of Matthew III displaying an equestrian in arms, with the shield bearing a lion: + SIGILL(UM). IOHAN(N)IS. DE BELLOMONTE The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 1055. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

XXVII. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 5745. Plaster cast of the first city seal of Beauvais (from an original wax seal impression dated 1228). The seal displays urban buildings within a fortified wall, under the word CIVITAS: + SIGILLUM BELVACENSIS COMMUNIE The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 94, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5745. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXVIII. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 5570. Plaster cast of the first city seal of Marmande (from an original wax seal impression dated 1244). The seal displays a bird’s eye-view of a cityscape: +SIGILLUM. CON.CILII. DE MAR.MANDE The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 387, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5570. Photo by Clément Blanc, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXIX. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 603 bis. Plaster cast of the reverse of the twosided seal of Humbert II, dauphin de Viennois (from an original wax seal impression dated 1343); the obverse shows an equestrian in arms. The seal displays a cityscape, above a shield bearing a dalphin between the word VIE / NA:

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AC: PALAT(I)NI: VAPINCESII: EBREDUN(ENSIS): ET: A(N)DRIE: COMITIS: D(OMI)NI: BA[RONNIARUM TURRIS, FUCIGNIACI] MO(N)TALBAN(I): [MEDULLIONIS] MO(N)TIS L[continued in the field]UPELLI The seal is described by Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 1, no 603. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXX. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 5554 bis, 5629 bis, 5852 and bis. Sulfur casts of the city seals of Castres (from an original wax seal impression dated 1303), Pamiers (from an original wax seal impression dated 1267), and Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val (from an original wax seal impression dated 1303). Upper right: Reverse of the two-sided seal of the city of Pamiers, displaying the legend of saint Antonin: + SIGNUM PASSIONIS [S]ANCTI ANTONINI The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 513 bis, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5554. Lower right: Reverse of the two-sided seal of the city of Castres, displaying the bust of man emerging from a shrine: +. YMAGO. CORPORIS. [. . . VI]CENTII The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 187 bis, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5629. Upper left: obverse of the city-seal of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, displaying a church; sun and fleur de lis in the field: + S(IGILLUM) C/OMUNIS. CONSILII.VILLE NOBILIS. VALLIS The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 605, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5852. Lower left: reverse of the city-seal of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, displaying the legend of saint Antonin: + S(IGILLUM). CAPITIS. S(AN)C(T)I. ANTONINI[. . .] The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 605 bis, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5852. Photo by Clément Blanc, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

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XXXI. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 5699. Plaster cast of the third city-seal of Metz (from an original wax seal impression dated 1505, although the use of the seal is attested as early as 1283). The seal displays the stoning of saint Stephen, with the executioners wearing the Judenhut: [+ SIGILLUM.S(ANCTI). STEPHANI, DE COMUNITATE. METENSI] The seal is described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 410, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5699. Photo by author, with kind permission of the Archives nationales. XXXII. Paris, Archives nationales, Service des sceaux, Collection de moulages, D 5802 et bis. Sulfur casts of the seal and counterseal of the city of Soissons (from an original wax seal impression dated 1228). The seal displays a standing figure in military attire, flanked on both sides by seven individuals: / SIG[ILLUM] SUESSIONENSIS COMMUNIE The counter-seal displays a four-storied edifice, possibly a belfry: + BERFRIDUM / S/UESSIONIS Seal and counter-seal are described by Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no 667 and bis, and Douët d’Arcq, Sceaux, vol. 2, no 5802. Photo by Clément Blanc, with kind permission of the Archives nationales.

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS Arch. Nat. Arch. Dep. BNF CCLS CCCM Col MGH Ms. Lat. PL

Archives nationales de France Archives départementales Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris Corpus Christianorum Series Latina Corpus Christianorum Continuatio Medievalis Column Monumenta Germaniae Historica Manuscript Latin Patrologia Latina

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Although millions of medieval seal-dies and seal impressions are still extant in libraries, museums, archives, and private collections, medieval historians are unlikely to have their attention drawn to what constitutes for the medieval west a premier repository of images, fingerprints and DNA material, names, titles, and toponyms. I owe my interest in diplomatics and sigillography to the Ecole nationale des chartes, and in particular to Professor Robert-Henri Bautier who held the chaire in Diplomatics while I was a graduate student at the Ecole and who, to my immense benefit, served as my dissertation advisor. Full realization of the massive, yet virtually ignored presence of seals came when Jean Favier, then Director of the Archives de France asked me to head the Seal Department of the French national Archives. Although I was to occupy this position for only three years before I emigrated to the United States, seals invaded my imagination imposing themselves as eloquent artifacts from the medieval past. Fellow chartistes (graduates of the Ecole des chartes) and curators made a long-distance focus on sealed charters possible by providing generous counsel and help with communication. Clément Blanc, Ghislain Brunel, Jean-Pierre Brunterc’h, Annie Dufour-Malbezin, Oliver Guyotjeannin, and Laurent Morelle know how much my research was enabled and stimulated by their intimate knowledge of French medieval charters and documentary practices. For an appreciation of seal usage at the European indeed international level, I am indebted to the International Committee of Sigillograhy. It gives me great pleasure to acknowledge here my gratitude to Paul D.H. Harvey, whose indefatigable leadership of the Committee and whose own work on seals have gone a long way to transform the study of seals. Membership in the Committee also afforded me the opportunity to visit several European archives and to obtain first hand a deep appreciation of the importance of geopolitical factors in the use and format of seals. My thanks to the many archivists in England, Spain, Italy, the Vatican, Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic who have widely opened the doors to their archival treasures and unstintingly shared their expertise. It took time and the faith of many to move seals away from their underappreciated position in the auxiliary sciences and toward the

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main-stream of historical research. Faith was displayed by academic colleagues who, disregarding the prejudices against the technical aspects of our discipline, invited me to speak to their seminars and in their conferences, who encouraged me to contribute essays and to publish articles, and who spent precious time in thoughtful conversations and critical reading of my essays. For the support and inspiration they provided with their openness, accessibility, and assistance, I thank John Baldwin, Peggy Brown, Caroline Bynum, Giles Constable, Jeffrey Hamburger, Dominique Iogna-Prat, Richard Parmentier, Gabrielle Spiegel, and John Van Engen. Time was made available through grants and fellowships, and I am grateful to the following institutions whose awards made it possible to concentrate on research and writing. It was while I was a member of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton (1996–1997) that I began gathering and studying seal metaphors in parallel with a systematic review of northern European charters produced between 950 and 1200. A Distinguished Faculty Research Award from the University of Maryland, College Park, Office of Research and Graduate Studies, General Research Board (GRB, 2001–2002), provided the opportunity to focus on twelfth-century sign theory. During the recent award of a Guggenheim Fellowship (2008–2009), I organized and redacted the present book. Parts of the argument developed therein have been honed in various book chapters and articles to sharpen the analysis presented here of medieval identity. Earlier versions of chapter 1, 2, 4, 5, 8, and 9 have respectively appeared in: “Diplomatic Sources and Medieval Documentary Practices: An Essay in Interpretive Methodology,” in The Past and Future of Medieval Studies, ed. John Van Engen (Notre Dame, 1994), pp. 313–343; “Toward an Archaeology of the Medieval Charter: Textual Production and Reproduction in Northern French Chartriers,” in Charters, Cartularies, and Archives. The Preservation and Transmission of Documents in the Medieval West, ed. Adam J. Kosto and Anders Winthrop (Toronto, 2002), pp. 43–60; “Ritual in the Royal Chancery: Text, Image and the Representation of Kingship in Medieval French Diplomas (700–1200),” in European Monarchy. Its Evolution and Practice from Roman Antiquity to Modern Times, eds. Heinz Duchhardt, Richard Jackson, David Sturdy (Stuttgart, 1992), pp. 27–40; “ ‘Difformitas.’ Invective, Individuality, and Identity in Twelfth-Century France,” in Norm und Krise von Kommunikation. Inszenierungen literarischer und sozialer Interaktion im Mittelalter, eds.

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Alois Hahn, Gert Melville, and Werner Röcke (Münster, 2006), pp. 251–271; “Ego, Ordo, Communitas. Seals and the Medieval Semiotics of Personality (1200–1350),” Die Bildlichkeit korporativer Siegel im Mittelalter. Kunstgeschichte und Geschichte im Gespräch, ed. Markus Späth (Cologne, 2009), pp. 47–64. Some of the material in chapters 3 and 6 appeared in “Medieval Identity: A Sign and a Concept,” American Historical Review 105 (2000), pp. 1489–1533. The argument developed in chapter 7 comes from two essays: “From Ego to Imago: Mediation and Agency in Medieval France,” The Haskins Society Journal, vol. 14 for 2003 (2005), pp. 151–173 and “Replica: Images of Identity and the Identity of Images,” in The Mind’s Eye. Art and Theological Argument in the Medieval West, eds. Jeffrey Hamburger and Anne-Marie Bouché (Princeton, 2006), pp. 46–64. Thanks are offered to the presses and to the volume editors for permission to integrate some of the published fruits of earlier efforts within the present volume. Julian Deahl, Senior Acquisitions Editor at Brill, Medieval Studies, encouraged my research on seals, signs, and images by indicating an early and sustained interest in welcoming its results into his series “Visualizing the Middle Ages.” Working with Marcella Mulder, Editor at Brill, was a pleasure; she coached me with patience, humor, wisdom, and advice throughout the difficult process of transforming a manuscript into a book. My Father is no longer here to accompany me in the fields of history. History was for us a gateway to a comfortable spot where, by sharing and competing for knowledge, while contesting our often divergent interpretations of human action and jointly marveling at human inventiveness, in comforting each other when the evidence for human violence was overwhelming, we exchanged our most intimate feelings in a climate of trust and love. This book is dedicated to his memory, because memory is the fabric of life, the victor of death. Patiently helping and tolerating me through it all, never relaxing his unflagging support, has been my husband Ira Rezak. I hope that he knows how much having him in my life is what makes it so worthwhile. Old Field, June 2010

INTRODUCTION Each chapter of this book has an air of independence. Indeed, every one originated with a separate book in mind. However, as their various conclusions came into view, each became a new starting point on a receding horizon, suggesting the contour of yet another interpretive environment. Far from clinching an argument, these conclusions seemed to push the quest forward. Treated as conjectures, they each became useful vantage points from which to see and set out to explore connections, dimensions, landscapes that had been invisible when I first began my research. Unlike Penelope, I did not dissolve the texture of my work every night, but all the same, the end of each chapter did not so much effect linear progress but rather produced an urge to re-visit terrain already covered, to pursue novel pathways now illuminated. To impose a definitive Olympian perspective on the maze which my research has traversed would be to impose a false logic of heuristic and epistemological control that I did not experience as such. Of course, my immersion in the complexities of medieval identity as conceptualized in contemporary texts and as enacted by markers of individuation invited a sampling of the theoretical smorgasbord offered by the postmodern practice of history. Indeed, my own interest in theory was developed within the ambiance of twenty-first century academic endeavor, but my growing engagement with medieval sign theory emerged, rather, from trends inherent in the medieval texts and artifacts themselves, from those charters which had been sealed in the eleventh and twelfth centuries with personal signs of identity. In considering the milieus in which this form of writing was conceived and produced, it soon became clear that these signs, seals, were a fulcrum of decisive theoretical debates about the relationship between language and reality, sign and referent, image and model. Faced with ample evidence of medieval theorizing, I was struck by the realization that theorization was hardly the exclusive province of twenty- and twentyfirst century scholars, and also by the idea that, though any theory’s principles can be abstracted as analytical tools, the actual shape of theory in historical time is primarily formed through its engagement with specific contemporary events. One has only to think of the breadth

2

introduction

of controversy associated with, say, Deconstruction, Post-Colonialism, or System Theory to appreciate their contemporary political, indeed ontological implications. In some instances, records of theoretical discourse may be the only surviving traces of otherwise unrecorded historical occurrences. Engaged with the actual circumstances surrounding its formulation, theory is in ongoing dialogue with praxis, with the world of bodies and objects by means of which communication occurs, the warp and weft of social reality. Although there need be no systematic causal linkage between theoretical ideas and sociocultural organization—to my knowledge, neither the Hellenistic world nor Post-Carolingian Europe produced a corpus of postcolonial and subaltern theory—, the historian is often able to observe a particular symbiosis of ideas, objects, and practices. It is the identification and analysis of such particular associations, uniquely composed and operative in specific historic timeframes and spaces, which intrigue me. Each component of such associations is, by virtue of being present in context, situated to perform in a distinctive fashion. Associative patterns present many options to the society within which they form and operate. As the full range of these options is invariably broader than the specific whole into which reiterated practice tends to settle them, their struggle for agency in turn disrupt the associative patterns from which they originated, and thus activate change in social dynamics. The associative pattern that is the subject of this book was prevalent between the mid-eleventh century and the early thirteenth century, entangling scholars, lay and ecclesiastical elites, engraved and imprinted images, the written word, and a set of theological and metaphysical discussions intensely focused on the manner of signification, the matter of representation, and the definition of personhood and individuality. This association first became apparent as I sought to contextualize the appearance of seals on non-royal charters in a way that would do justice to all the medieval actors concerned. I followed these eleventh- and twelfth-century charters and their records of transactions, not so much forward, in their explicit disposition of goods and souls, their organization of people, but backward, by investigating those responsible for their conception, formulation, redaction, and manipulation. The actual composers of the charters I encountered were schoolmen, masters broadly involved in the arts of rhetoric and composition. Although their written output encompassed many different genres, letters, charters, glosses, exegetical treatises, philosophical ruminations, the lexicon they deployed crossed the borders of these

introduction

3

distinctions. I first happened upon a seal metaphor in exegetical writings attributed to early twelfth-century schoolmen in Laon, whose most notable figure, Anselm of Laon, served also as the bishop’s chancellor in charge of the new production of episcopal sealed charters. The intersection of seal usage and seal metaphor prompted me to take up two lines of research. In the first, I sought to determine the extent to which the seal metaphor was used during the twelfth century. Instances of such usage proved so numerous and so wide ranging in their semantic dimensions that I decided to focus the present analysis on those metaphors that engaged the clarification of identity, whether of God or man, and the explication of images’ signifying modes. In a second line of research, I explored the ways in which the operations of both artifactually-based metaphors and of artifacts were mutually enabled by their concomitant use. In so doing, I discovered that the seal’s effectiveness in both rhetoric and praxis resided in its mode of production. It was less as an object than as a process that seals were mobilized. The process in question was imprinting, a technique whereby a material containing an image in its inner matter comes into contact with another material upon which the image is pressed and thereby revealed. For schoolmen tending to realism, this process exemplified the reality and supremacy of forms and ideas over matter. Dualism of this sort informed the widely held Augustinian sign theory which considered that meaning was derived from the sign’s ideal referent and was radically independent of the tangible sign itself. However, my sustained exploration of seal impressions and of seal metaphors has revealed that in the twelfth-century seals were conceived as embodying their referents’ characteristics. The transcendence of realism was thus somewhat displaced over time by notions of immanent forms of signification; seals both clarified and enacted this shift. Thus a paradigmatic alteration in both the conception and the utilization of seals and, more generally of material signs, was brewing. The emphasis was no longer on the transfer of the engraved image independently of its support. Rather, attention came to be re-focused on the consubstantiality of the engraved image and its constitutive material; on the contact between the engraved support and the receptacle of its impression; on the power of autopoiesis—since the transfer of the image that occurred between two materials was independent of and hidden from human agency—and, finally, on the imprinted image as a receptacle preserving the cont(r)actual mark of its origin, indeed of the presence of its causal agent (model, prototype). Thus, in seal metaphors, the vector of

4

introduction

signification was no longer teleologically determined but, embedded in concrete signifying modes, produced meaning as a knowable empirical conduit for the understanding of effect as caused, of authenticity as origin, and of representation as presence. Anthropological and sacramental theology were prime venues for the newly deployed seal metaphors which served an experimental immanent semiotics. These were the arenas in which arguments were mustered concerning the real presence of Christ’s historical body in the eucharist, the nature of personhood in the Trinity, and the ontological and ethical implications of the creation of man in the image of God. The concomitant diffusion of the newly promoted sealed charter brings us back to the delicate issue of the nature of the relationship between such diverse phenomena. The application of seals for documentary purposes is not usually considered from the perspective of twelfth-century theology and sign theory. Part I addresses questions concerning this methodology. The diffusion of sealing practices has most typically been related to literacy, bureaucracy, ruling politics, and to a lesser extent law. As for the seals themselves and the charters to which they are affixed, their study has fallen primarily, though no longer exclusively, within the purview of diplomatics, the traditional auxiliary science devised for the critical study of charters and diplomas, with sigillography a special subset for the treatment of seals. In chapters 1 and 2, I argue that medieval sealed charters have heretofore been considered primarily as a source, raw material to be exploited within the paradigms established by modern disciplines in the humanities. The function, one might even say the personality of the twelfth-century seal, however, does not lend itself to being confined within the boundaries of modern disciplinary organization. Firstly, seals themselves were not produced as historical documents. Secondly, twelfth-century epistemological patterns ran along quite different lines from our modern analytical categories, which latter methodologies consequently disrupt the texture of these earlier medieval patterns. I have attempted to restore the historical agency and contingency of seals by tracing the itinerary of sealed charters from the circumstances of their production, to their contemporary performance, and through the various uses and manipulations which they inspired and to which they were subjected. Situating seals and sealing practices within their original medieval conceptual and utilitarian spheres of use and thought, however, would be a task difficult

introduction

5

to accomplish without recourse to a diverse range of interpretive tools derived from diplomatics, semiotic anthropology, cultural history, material culture, and literary criticism. However, since I believe that our modern disciplinary-based approaches to the past often impose distinctions that ignore or even obfuscate the connections that existed between past phenomena, I am not advocating free willing inter-disciplinarity. Inter-disciplinarity has greatly contributed to the rigidification of our epistemological models, fostering the belief that by transcending specific disciplinary models we somehow abolish them. In fact, inter-disciplinarity re-enforces an illusion that discipline-based research is natural when it is actually only a normative behavior that ignores the arbitrariness of its own configuration. Thus, a modern mixture of disciplines tends to bury the associative patterns of the past under the tangles of our own making. The caveats I have just stated about disciplinarity also extend to theory, as I argue in chapter 3. Nevertheless, modern theoretical and disciplinary categories are certainly of value under two conditions: when they enable recognition of their own, often inadequately acknowledged foundational role in our culture, and also when they foster the identification of differing conceptual sluices for the flow of knowledge, the transit of perception, and the transfer of experience. These are methodological considerations which I hope to have adequately addressed within this book. Part II considers the modalities of seal forms and sealing practices from the early Middle Ages through the first decades of the thirteenth century. The purpose of such a broad chronological span is a demonstration of the extent to which the notion of the ‘medieval seal’ constitutes an umbrella-term for a variety of objects and events that actually differed widely from time to time, from place to place, in use, aspect, and interpretation. Chapter 4 focuses on the changing character of royal French seals which, as iconic signs of documentary authorization, were a ruling prerogative in pre-millennial Europe. In chapters 5 and 6, mostly concerned with France and the western part of the Empire during the eleventh and twelfth centuries, I demonstrate connections between the spread of seal usage beyond kings, to bishops and high ranking elites, and a medieval socio-academic concern for mediatic processes. In dealing with such matters, schoolmen turned to patristic literature (to Augustine in particular) on language, signs (sacraments), and images, bringing to the fore texts that had heretofore received little attention. At stake apparently was an anxiety that symbolic representation had no presence. Several experiments were

6

introduction

pursued in order to extend presence so that is could permeate representational procedure. In one, the eucharistic sign, self-referenciality was posited, with identity assuring the rapport between sign and thing, a status that remained uniquely confined to this particular sign. In another, the image, likeness and resemblance were invoked, with the understanding that resemblance implied some aspect of the presence of that image’s model. This coupling, image and resemblance, was a strong motif of twelfth-century sensibility and self-perception, animating a religious desire for the emulation of divine or saintly models but also inspiring an iconographic vocabulary of social representation based upon the ontologic notion that to be was to be alike. Chapter 7 engages the third experiment in assuring presence in representation. Image remained central to this experiment, but not just any image. I argue here that twelfth-century intellectuals discerned quite different modes of signification at work in painted, sculpted, mirror, and imprinted images. In examining medieval scholarly analyses of such differences, I have found that the imprinted image was accorded a preeminent representational status, as an entity which related to its model not only via visual resemblance but also through physical contact. In the world of sealing practices, however, although seals originally and long after bore marks of personal bodily contact, they came by the thirteenth century to be considered as replicas, one of the other, thus demonstrating that objects may have the power to inflect indeed to alter the cultural framework within which they operate. Part III considers images and individuals on the basis of two related premises previously explored in part II: the appropriateness of the image as a personal sign of identity, and the ontological nature of man as the imprinted image of God. Chapter 8 argues that such premises enforced sameness at all levels of personhood, whether subjective or objective, and thus produced individuality as alterity, as a negative marker. In chapter 9, I consider personhood and identity from the perspective of corporate beings, towns in particular, interpreting the reasons for the individual expression of collective identity.

PART I

SOURCES AND METHODS

CHAPTER ONE

BEYOND THE TEXT: MEDIEVAL DOCUMENTARY PRACTICES Historians have their method, just like anyone else, and they’re jealous of it, but the Iliad shames any history of Greece, and Dante stands supreme above the world’s collected medievalists. Of course, the medievalists don’t know it, but everyone else does. As a way to arrive at the truth, exactitude and methodology are, in the end, far inferior to vision and apotheosis. Mark Helprin1

Medieval Charters, Then and Now According to the Carolingian poet Rabanus Maurus, writing served best the interests of the truth and was the perfect norm of salvation.2 At the beginning of the thirteenth century, Gerald of Wales commented that “writing is an exacting business. First you decide what to leave out, and then you have to polish up what you put in.”3 Writing, from both perspectives, encompassed a wide variety of forms: manuscripts, documents, seals, engraved metals and stones. Such written sources are cited interchangeably by medievalists who use them as primary materials, as a solid basis from which, and in continuity with which, to project their own historical writings. I propose to discuss a specific class of the documentary sources available for Northern France between 1000–1230, so-called documents of practice, pragmatic records, otherwise known as charters.4 1

Mark Helprin, A Soldier of the Great War: A Novel (New York, 1991), p. 30. PL CXII, Carmen ad Bonosum, col. 1608B: Nam Scriptura pia norma est perfecta salutis, /Et magis in rebus valet, et magis utilis omni est, / Promptior est gustu, sensu perfectior atque / Sensibus humanis facilis magis arte tenenda/, quoted by Robert Favreau, “Fonction des inscriptions au Moyen Age,” Cahiers de civilisation médiévale 32 (1989), pp. 204–232, at p. 224. 3 Gerald of Wales, The Journal Through Wales and the Description of Wales (New York, 1978), quoted by Marc Drogin, Biblioclasm: The Mythical Origins, Magic Powers, and Perishability of the Written Word (Savage, Md, 1989), p. vii. 4 The following sources have been used in this chapter: Chartae Latinae Antiquiores, ed. Albert Bruckner and Robert Marichal. Vol. XIII: France, ed. Helmut Atsma 2

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Such documents have long been seen as records of legal and economic activity, showing the world as it was, not as it should have been. In reading charters, medievalists expect to lift the ideological veil and to lay hold of the raw material of a retrospective seriography.5 In the age of postmodern criticism, however, an attempt has been made to erase presumptive distinctions between ideologically distorted literary texts and transparent documents. This in fact has led to a redefinition of the same differentiation but now oriented along a semiological cleavage. In intellectual texts, processes of meaning production are the subject matter which may thus be seen in direct operation. On the other hand, documents are the effects of meaning produced. Charters as products, rather than as processes, readily lend themselves to a content-oriented approach,6 and having been left virtually untouched by the waves of textual criticism, are freshly available for diplomatic analysis.

and Jean Vezin (Zurich, 1981); Clovis Brunel, Recueil des actes des comtes de Pontieu (Paris, 1880); Marie Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie de 911 a 1066 (Caen, 1961); Pierre Gasnault, “Les actes privés de l’abbaye de St Martin de Tours du 8e au 12e siècle,” Bibliothèque de I’Ecole des chartes 112 (1954), pp. 24–66; Olivier Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou et son entourage au XIe siècle, 2 vols. (Paris, 1972), vol. 2: Catalogue d’actes; Jean-François Nieus, Les chartes des comtes de Saint-Pol (XIe–XIIIe siècles) (Turnhout, 2008); Fernand Vercauteren, Actes des comtes de Flandre/Oorkonden der graven van Vlaanderen, 1071–1128 (Brussels, 1938); Thérèse de Hemptinne, Actes des comtes de Flandre/Oorkonden der graven van Vlaanderen, 1128–1168 (Brussels, 1989); Walter Prevenier, Actes des comtes de Flandre/Oorkonden der graven van Vlaanderen, 1191–1206, 3 vols. (Brussels, 1964–1977). I have already addressed the context for and implications of increasing lay documentary practices in “The Confrontation of Orality and Textuality: Jewish and Christian Literacy in Eleventh- and Twelfth-Century Northern France,” in Rashi, 1040–1990. Congrès européen des études juives, ed. Gabrielle Sed-Rajna (Paris, 1993), pp. 541– 558, and “Civic Liturgies and Urban Records in Northern France (Twelfth-Fourteenth Centuries),” in City and Spectacle in Medieval Europe, ed. Kathryn Reyerson and Barbara Hanawalt (Minneapolis and London, 1994), pp. 34–55. For documentary pratices in Northern France prior to the mid eleventh century, see Olivier Guyotjeannin, “ ‘Penuria scriptorium.’ Le mythe de l’anarchie documentaire dans la France du Nord (Xe–première moitié du XIe siècle),” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 155 (1997), pp. 11–44. A special issue of the Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 155 (1997), contains the proceedings of a roundtable held on Pratiques de l’écrit documentaire au XIe siècle. A special issue of Médiévales 56 (2009), Pratiques de l’écrit, ed. Etienne Anheim and Pierre Chastang, pp. 5–113, also bears primarily on early medieval documentary writing. See chapter 6 below, especially at notes 50 and 54 for a review of historiographical debates on the growth of medieval literate practices. 5 Georges Duby, The Three Orders: Feudal Society Imagined (Chicago, 1980), p. 147. 6 This contradictory argument is Hayden White’s, “The Context in the Text: Method and Ideology in Intellectual History,” in The Content of the Form: Narrative Discourse and Historical Representation (Baltimore, 1987), pp. 185–213, at pp. 187, 210–211.

beyond the text

11

The centrality of documentary sources in the epistemology of medieval history is best exemplified by what was, and still to a very great extent is, a discipline proper to the field of medieval studies: Diplomatics. Diplomatics has long centered on a detailed examination of written documents for the purpose of extracting what they say. This assumed epistemological centrality of the document, however, does not correspond to the role, significance, and meaning of documentation in the time and place it was generated. I am not suggesting that medieval historians reject written sources merely because they were not central to the medieval mechanics of social action and communication. I do suggest that recovery of medieval charters’ meaning and evidential capacity requires analysis of their operations within the society that produced them, operations that involved being marginal agents, forgeries, lexically imprecise texts, linguistic (Latin) and semiotic (letters) mysteries, ineffective legal tools, distrusted evidence, challenged receptacles of memory, un-consulted archives, ambivalent symbols, ritual objects, or sacred monuments. Many historians and diplomatists have listed these many “dysfunctional” characteristics. Perhaps the time has now come to consider not only the documents, but documentary practices, and not a failing system but one that worked; we need to explore how and to what effect. Northern French medieval charters are available to us as material presences, as objects that were made because desirable, that have since lived in oblivion, that have been manipulated by silence. They were not produced as sources, and diplomatics may not therefore dissociate the empirical examination of documents from a three-tiered awareness: (1) of the principles of historians’ relation to the documents, (2) of the medieval idea of the document, and (3) of the fact that in medieval times, everything was off the record so to speak save that which was read to an audience within earshot.7 The very concept of written source is fundamental in more than one way to the medieval historian, precisely because the balance between the sources and the gesture required to establish them is so tilted toward the founding nature of that gesture. The past that is being examined is the document, that is a material which is a product, an ongoing construct, and certainly not a given. Through the comprehensive taxonomy of diplomatics, the medieval status and role of charters,

7 In the striking wording of Elizabeth Eisenstein, The Printing Press as an Agent of Change, 2 vols. (Cambridge, 1979), p. 10.

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which has yet to be assessed, has been changed: from being social phenomena and cultural artifacts, charters have been rendered into data, no innocent term. Transformed into a “given,” the very modalities of charters’ creation and being no longer inhere in the medieval sphere of their use, but in their position within a reified sequence of types. The charter thus has come to derive meaning as a referential signpost within the larger class of documents. The multiplicity and redundancy of documentary signals have been condensed by diplomatists and historians who use various schemes of classification. But these classifications, having become the primary signals, are accepted and repeated at the cost of original detections. Medieval charters have partially been detached from their identities and are therefore of tremendously diminished evidential capacity. Because of the epistemic strategy of their very students they have been severed from many of their original functions and messages. Further consequences of such strategy are a narrowing of the already small pool of themes covered by scribal material, an obscuration of the implications of situated uses of literate modes, and a requirement that medievalists rely heavily on contexts as enabling analytical frameworks for charters that were long supposed to document precisely their own contexts and circumstances of production. In here proposing an agenda by which to learn directly from the object itself, to discover what allowed it to be conceived, to read the chain of its generative acts, I of course build on a rich legacy of diplomatic critique. However, I wish also to suggest some newer avenues for future consideration. Since Mabillon (1632–1707) first placed documentary criticism on a firm footing in the late seventeenth century, the discipline of diplomatics has been based upon specific set of assumptions. (1) Documents are to be considered from the viewpoint of their authors, so that categories include royal diplomas, aristocratic, or monastic, or episcopal charters, all of which may also be divided into the subcategories of public and private deeds. (2) Documents which contain the disposition and will of an agent are to be seen primarily as having been drawn up to serve probative juridical functions. (3) Documents were drawn up according to specific forms and to particular sets of rules in order to achieve validity. (4) Documents are all part of archival deposits in an order that is historically significant because it was imposed by the institution that originally generated or received them. (5) Forged documents must be differentiated from genuine. Although current diplomatics embraces, in principle, every form of documentary evidence, it never-

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theless focuses mainly upon juridical matters by confining most of its investigation to documents with legal implications and by emphasizing that these medieval charters have a primarily judicial function.8 In my own practice of diplomatics I began with the formulaic approach just outlined. In studying Northern French documentary practices of the eleventh and twelfth centuries, however, I found that this formalization had imposed the shape of its own method upon the objects of its study; it obscured evidence of the ways in which these objects operated. Far from being confined to the juridical, the documentary practices that I identified suggest combined systems which are best analyzed without the preconception of an imaginary, unitary, reality. Documentary, Production and Conservation Northern French charters are manuscript. By repeating this obvious characteristic, we are reminded that modes of documentary production 8

Mabillon’s magistral exposé is found in his De re diplomatica libri VI (Paris, 1681). Much scholarship has been devoted to Mabillon; see for instance Léon Levillain, “Le ‘De Re Diplomatica’,” in Mélanges et documents publiés à l’occasion du 2e centenaire de la mort de Mabillon (Ligugé-Paris, 1908), pp. 192–252; Rutherford Aris, “Jean Mabillon (1623–1707),” in Medieval Scholarship. Biographical Studies on the Formation of a Discipline. Vol 1: History, ed. Helen Damico and Joseph B. Zavadil (New York, 1955), pp. 15–32; Blandine Barret-Kriegel, Mabillon (Paris, 1988); “Jean Mabillon,” with partial English translation of the De Re Diplomatica by Richard Wertis, in Historians at Work, vol. 2, ed. Peter Gay et Victor G. Wexler (New York, 1972), pp. 161–198. The best discussions of diplomatics are found in Robert-Henri Bautier, Chartes et chancelleries. Etudes de diplomatique et de sigillographie médiévales, 2 vols. (Paris, 1990), especially pp. 3–33,167–182; Leonard Boyle, “Diplomatics,” in Medieval Studies: An Introduction, ed. James Powell (Syracuse, 1976), pp. 69–101; Georges Tessier, “Diplomatique,” in L’histoire et ses méthodes, ed. Charles Samaran (Paris, 1961), pp. 633–676; and most recently in Olivier Guyotjeannin, Jacques Pycke et BenoîtMichel Tock, Diplomatique médiévale (Turnhout, 1993; 3rd rev. éd., 2006; references throughout the book are to the first edition of Diplomatique médiévale). It is not my purpose to deny medieval charters any legal function. For studies that emphasize the use of charters as legal evidence in southern Burgundy, see Karl Heidecker, “30 June 1047: The End of Charters as Legal Evidence in France?” in Strategies of Writing. Studies in Text and Trust in Medieval Europe, ed. Petra Schulte, Marco Mostert, Irene van Renswoude (Brepols, 2008), pp. 85–94, and Heidecker, “Communication by Written Texts in Court Cases: Some Charter Evidence (ca. 800 B ca. 1100),” in New Approaches to Medieval Communication, ed. Marco Mostert, first ed. (Turnhout, 1999), pp. 101–126; second edition. in preparation for 2008–9. See also below at notes 25–26, and chapter 6 at note 55, for additional bibliography on the role of charters in the settlement of disputes.

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were not mechanical; they always involved the mediation of a conscious intelligence, of a process of human creation at the material level. If historians organize their data in relation to conscious expressions and in the continuity of signs left by scribal activities,9 then medievalists must be careful to distinguish within their documents the dual level of consciousness which informs the written characters and their semantics. Medieval self-consciousness about written modes of representation may be experienced through a work that is not only the residue of an event but is also an event in its own way, one that directly prompted other scribes to repeat or to improve its formulation. Northern French charters between 1000–1230 yield up their full significance only when attention is paid to the circumstances of their production and conservation, to their diplomatic discourse, to the modalities and significance of their use, to their operations within society, and to the symbiotic relationship they entertain with yet other systems of signs: the heraldic emblems and images engraved on the seals attached to these charters (Fig. 1). Charters in the name of lay lords became more numerous during this period even as documentary practices extended from clerical and monastic to lay milieus. However, up until the beginning of the twelfth century, the process and control of written records had remained the monopoly of religious establishments which drafted and preserved those records of land endowments made to them and those acts which settled disputes over land ownership in their favor. The donor in whose name a charter records the decision to transfer land remains a problematic author from the viewpoint of the creation of the document: though he may have ordered the document to be made, as is sometimes specified in the charter, he is certainly not the one who composed and wrote it. Therefore, in addressing existing catalogues of the acts of the counts of Anjou, Champagne, Flanders, Ponthieu, Saint-Pol, or of the lords of Montmorency and Nesles, a critical early step should be establishment of the scribal provenance of such deeds.10

9 In the word of Michel de Certeau, The Writing of History (New York, 1988), p. 210, who has inspired much of my own consideration of the craftsmanship of the historical discipline, as has George Kubler, The Shape of Time: Remarks on the History of Things (New Haven, 1962), and to some lesser extent Tendances, perspectives, et méthodes de l’histoire médiévale. Actes du Centième congrès national des Sociétés savantes, vol. 1 (Paris, 1977). 10 This is the method I followed in order to assess the circumstances for, and the significance of, the diffusion of sealing during the eleventh and twelfth centuries, see chapter 6 below.

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This is also true for royal diplomas which, too, between the tenth and the twelfth centuries, were drawn up primarily outside the royal chancery by their ecclesiastical recipients. Actually, it would be useful to conceive of charters and diplomas, and thus to organize their potential editions, from the viewpoint of their originating scriptoria. This would define spheres of scribal activity and serve to map their interactions with the zones and assertions of lay authorities. Such an approach shifts the emphasis from the charter as an act of individual or familial will to the charter as part of an archive. Here the historian and diplomatist must be cautious, for there may be no necessary contiguity between the archive of an abbey and documents drafted in its scriptoria. The archive might well, for example, include documents produced elsewhere, especially from other religious institutions endowed with their own writing bureaus. As a result, cartularies, which from the twelfth century onward registered copies of monastic title-deeds held in a particular archive, cannot be used systematically to document the output of its abbey’s scriptorium.11 Nevertheless, the inclusion of a charter as part of a particular archive imparts to it a specific function, at the very least, preservation; but to what end? As discussed below, in cases of contested transactions, monks rarely referred to charters in trying to prove their rights, and these were often too vague about the property transferred. Even the witnesses listed in the charters were not those called for testimony; testimony and its authenticity still resided with people, not with charters. Asking in the broadest terms what was meaningful in the very act of archiving, attention may be drawn to documentary practices in Northern French towns, which reveal a formal requirement for city archives. Urban governments produced documents for their citizens who wished to put their contracts into writing. The format of these urban records, known as chirographs, consisted of several copies of a text recording that a covenant had been made in the presence of specifically named town officials. The identical texts were then cut apart along a marked incision so that parties to the conveyances could each receive an identical version of the text. Authenticity was to be proven by matching the cut edges of the copies with a reference copy deposited within the city archive, which served as a matrix from which the other versions of the transaction derived their authenticity. Chirographs were used to

11

Specific instances of such situations are analyzed in chapter 2 below.

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some extent by ecclesiastical institutions and by the nobility (Fig. 2),12 but not in the systematic way that came to characterize the documentary practice of Northern French towns. This has led to the veritable equation of chirographs with urban records.13 When a portion of the chirograph bearing the names of all parties to the transactions was placed in the urban archive, these individuals were inscribed within the ongoing narrative of the city’s history. This event made them part of the very substance of the collective identity from which they as individuals derived the means and meanings of their social behavior. Such archives, which were stored in the town hall, compelled a definition of this most urban of spaces, and ultimately of the town itself, as the very source for documentary authenticity, as the locus credibilis.14 Archives thus played a critical symbolic role in marking the city as an authoritative center of credibility, and in imprinting its society with an authentic identity.15

12 Michel Parisse, “Remarques sur les chirographes et les chartes-parties antérieures à 1120 et conservées en France,” Archiv für Diplomatik 32 (1986), pp. 546–567. 13 Fifty thousand urban chirographs from the thirteenth century onward are still extant in the city archives of Douai, as well as several thousands each in the city archives of Valenciennes and Abbeville, R.-H. Bautier, “L’authentification des actes privés dans la France médiévale,” in Notariado publico y documento privado: de los origines al siglo XIV. Actas del VII Congreso Internacional de Diplomatica (Valencia, 1986), pp. 701–772, at p. 744; reprinted in Chartes, sceaux, et chancelleries, vol. 1, pp. 269–340, at p. 312. Article 4 of the 1352 charter of the town of Saint-Josse reads: “et porra on par devant eulx [the échevins] passer et faire toutes obligations, acors, recognoissanches faites entre parties; et de ychelles feront chartres ou chirograffes, dont il tenront une des parties, et en bailleront a cascune partie autant se elles le requierent.” Augustin Thierry, Recueil des documents inédits de l’histoire du Tiers Etat. Tome quatrième: pièces relatives a l’histoire municipale d’Abbeville . . . (Paris, 1870), p. 638. The urban chirograph remained in use through the second half of the fourteenth century. The later-developed system of registering deeds of title from which were issued as many originals as needed also involved the maintenance of these registers in urban archives. See mention of registers in the 1343 statute for the administration of Rue, article 3: “Item, que les escriptures des chartes de le dite ville et des autres coses seront faites a l’anchien usage, et y ara caier propres pour les chartes, et seront passées en plain eskevinage, et les chirographes recordées, et les chartes seelées; et y ara propre caier as causes, as mises et as recheptes, chascun a l’ordenanche, et un pour les plais, prochiés et arrés.” (Thierry, Recueil des documents inédits, vol. 4, p. 672.) 14 Alain de Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique française et pontificale. Tome II. L’acte privé (Paris, 1948), pp. 238–241; Bautier, «L’authentification des actes privés,» p. 739; Georges Espinas, La vie urbaine de Douai au Moyen Age, 4 vols. (Paris, 1913), vol. 1, p. 536; Henri Sellier, L’authentification des actes par l’échevinage (Lille, 1934), p. 144, quoting an article from the customal of Cambrai: «Lettres en ferme [i.e., in city archives] sont mères en elles, faisantes plainte foy de ce qu’ elles contiennent.» 15 This argument has been further developed in Bedos-Rezak, “Civic Liturgies and Urban Records in Northern France.”

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Diplomatic Discourse and the Performance of Charters Clerical scribes thus controlled the form, terminology, and language of the diplomatic discourse. They wrote in Latin, which they alone knew (the earliest preserved vernacular document is a 1205 city record from Douai). Charters originating from a single scriptorium tend to display standardized features but, and here diplomatics may have been guilty of over-categorization, standardization was specific to the locality, and the overall texture of scribal culture remained fluctuating, uneven, and multiform. As a result of this, and not merely because charters are rather few, quantification is of little value and ill suited to the conditions of scribal culture. Shared features within charters of identical scribal origin include lexical specificities, textual forms, traditions and topoi for the preambles. All these articulate the cultural and ideological models ambient in a given scriptorium. They should consequently be analyzed with reference to the volumes produced by or kept in the library of the specific scriptorium in order to investigate the borrow-terms from classical texts and medieval treatises and their application in charters to the description of what was perceived as social reality. It would also be worthwhile to look at a scriptorium’s textual production in toto so as to evaluate the extent to which Latin words were polysemic, and from which terminological traffic the ultimate patterns of semantic unity flowed. Such philological filiation, once established,16 would allow one to consider the ways in which diplomatic discourse engaged the reality that was its object. What was it within living experience that inspired such modes of representation but was yet not identical to it? Is the combination of themes (in preambles), titles (nobilis, consul, miles), acts (donation, exchange, agreement), a lexicon of what took place, or a structure within which might be organized a manifestation congenial to the relationships, imaginary or otherwise, which the scribes bore to their own social and cultural situations? With the general increase of written documents in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, there appeared all sorts of new elements, such as specific social categorizations and political definitions. Were these entirely new elements or elements newly put into writing? Now that, by means of written artifacts, a medium for the preservation of

16 See an instance of this in Bernard S. Bachrach, “Neo-Roman vs. Feudal: The Heuristic Value of a Construct for the Reign of Fulk Nerra, count of the Angevins (987–1040),” Cithara 30 (1990), pp. 3–30, at p. 9.

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complex context is made available, have we evidence for a new context, or for a new medium? We know that property was transferred previously without the benefit of charters; charters allowed new means for solemnizing, validating and executing the transfer, but the transfer itself was not new. Some social categories, among witnesses especially, appear so suddenly in eleventh-century charters that they are likely to have been consolidated over the years. Pushing the argument to an extreme, could we, in talking about a feudal revolution, for instance, be confusing the clarification of social concepts performed through writing with a possibly a-synchronous growth of specific social structure? If this were the case, might not the “feudal revolution” above all be a revolution in diplomatics?17 The relationship between the social terminology used in these documents and constitutional reality, and the related question of the evidential capacity of charters, are perhaps best addressed by considering the charter as an agent for the structuring of society. In eleventhcentury Northern France, diplomatic discourse extended far beyond the bare recording of transactions. It declared the donors’ motivations, inscribing them within the rationale of Christian ethics and salvific eschatology. It garbed donors with titles of dignity, thus articulating a social system by which the donors’ status was given definition, meaning, and precedence. It also shaped kin groups in reporting the modalities of the laudatio parentum, and networks of dependence and solidarity when listing witnesses.18 Documentary discourse and practice sacralized the whole process: thus a formula came systematically to accompany the autograph cross of the donor (Fig. 3), stating that the cross strengthened the act, would prevent it from being attacked, or would bring excommunication or divine retribution upon whom-

17 The argument in favor of a feudal mutation during the eleventh century is made by Jean-Pierre Poly and Eric Bournazel, La mutation féodale, Xe–XIIe siècle, 2nd ed. (Paris, 1993). For the argument against a feudal revolution at the turn of the second millennium, with a presentation of the full debate, see most recently Dominique Barthélémy, The Serf, the Knight, and the Historian, trans. Robert Graham Edwards (Ithaca, 2009); in chapter 2, pp. 12–36, Barthélémy challenges the traditional distinction made in diplomatics between charters and notices, which supports the equally traditional notion that the notice was a degenerated form, representative of the sociopolitical turmoil of the eleventh century. 18 Steven D. White, Custom, Kinship, and Gifts to Saints. The Laudatio Parentum in Western France, 1050–1150 (Chapel Hill and London, 1988).

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ever failed to respect the content of the charter.19 Further sacralization was achieved by the custom of placing it on the altar.20 The supernatural protection explicit in the deed’s association with cross and altar implied that the written act functioned as representative of a superior, irrevocable order, and that the document itself might mediate divine punishment; threats of malediction and of excommunication were now regularly incorporated within final clauses.21 These textual constructs in charter format might be, and were, read aloud in translation thus involving the audience in an oral experience which shaped and communicated awareness of their socio-cultural environment.22 The charters themselves came to play a central part in the performance of rituals and social forms maintained in the oral tradition then prevalent in aristocratic lay culture. Many charters state that they have been touched by everybody’s hand in order to prevent any quarrel, or refer

19 Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou, vol. 2, p. 9, note 21: 1056, donation of Count Geoffrey to the abbey of Marmoutier: cartam istam . . . sacratissime crucis in eadem effigiato vexillo quo adversus omnem possit esse tuta calumniam munivimus; Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, no. 43 p. 148: 1015–1026, donation of Duke Richard II to the abbey of St Ouen: . . . per signum crucis cum excommunicatione hanc cartam firmavit. . . . 20 Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, for instance no. 149 p. 334: 1040–1050, confirmation by Duke William of a donation in favor of the abbey of St Leger, . . . pro sua suorumque salute, donationem supra altare posuit, de his omnibus que Hunfridus dederat. . . . See also a discussion of placing charters on altars in Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique, vol. 2, pp. 112–114; Guyotjeannin, Diplomatique médiévale, p. 86. The placement of charters on the altar was a current phenomenon during the eleventh and twelfth centuries. 21 Yvonne Bongert, Recherches sur les cours laïques du Xe au XIIe siècles (Paris, 1949), p. 43, indicates several instances of such threats in tenth- and eleventh-century charters. There is scholarly consensus on the fact that the use of documentary clauses involving spiritual maledictions against betrayers of a charter’s content grew numerous during the tenth and early eleventh century and declined in the later part of that century; see a review of the evidence in Lester K. Little, “La morphologie des malédictions monastiques,” Annales. E.S.C. 34 (1979), pp. 43–60, at p. 47; Little, Benedictine Maledictions. Liturgical cursing in Romanesque France (Ithaca, 1993); Jeffrey Bowman, “Do Neo-Romans Curse,” Viator 28 (1997), pp. 1–32; Michel Zimmermann, “Protocoles et préambules dans les documents Catalans du Xe au XIIe siècle: évolution diplomatique et signification spirituelle,” Mélanges de la Casa de Velasquez 10 (1974), pp. 41–76, 11(1975), pp. 51–79, at vol. 10, pp. 51–54. 22 On the charters being read aloud and on the vocal participation of its audience, see Little, “Maledictions monastiques,” p. 48; White, Laudatio Parentum, pp. 37, 208; Emily Tabuteau, Transfers of Property in Eleventh-Century Norman Law (Chapel Hill, 1988), pp. 207, 212–215, 220. On lay donors gaining social identity through their patronage of religious houses, see the comments of John Howe, “The Nobility’s Reform of the Medieval Church,” American Historical Review 93 (1988), pp. 317–339, at p. 334.

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to the eloquia and gesta, words and gestures of a donor, or have objects physically attached to them—knives or rods by conveyance of which acts of alienation had traditionally been performed.23 By being spoken and manipulated, charters served to represent a particular order; they asserted control of time and space. They can be conceived as literally producing and organizing social meaning. Perhaps they should even be evaluated as embodiments and instruments of power, on behalf of clerics who had the power and knowledge (a virtual monopoly of literacy) to state the order of the universe, and on behalf of lay magnates who came to see the written word as representative of their power because it was a means for the expression and reinforcement of a social order in which they were accorded images of superior status. The charters issued from and kept by a single monastery allow the identification of an aristocratic group unified by its gifts in its interactions with this monastery; perhaps it is possible here to perceive a medieval version of a clientele. By inscribing lay gifts, the titles of the donors, their family connections, the list of their witnesses, the scribes are also inscribing a social order, mapping zones of authority, organizing its hierarchy. In noting that eleventh- and twelfthcentury donations to Ile-de-France abbeys register a sociological shift by which small landholders become totally excluded in favor of wealthy noble donors, I wonder whether it is possible to conceive that monks screened their donors, or at least the recording of gifts, so as to create through an archive that pattern of landholding and that structure of authority corresponding to their specific vision of social order; and they enacted this order through documentary practice and symbolic manipulation of charters. Could this hypothetical performative function have been so central that adoption of its perspective may now be used to shed light on what appear to be charters’ dysfunctional aspects? Although the land and property rights granted to monasteries and their saints are responsible for the documentary explosion in eleventh-century Northern France, a recent analysis of eleventh-century Norman charters shows how few charters describe the land transaction being recorded accurately; nor is it clear what witnesses were to do, or did, in defense of a challenged

23 Bedos-Rezak, “The Confrontation of Orality and Textuality,” p. 549; Boüard, L’acte privé, pp. 112–120; Michael T. Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record. England, 1066–1307, 2nd ed. (Cambridge, 1993), pp. 307–317.

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alienation.24 In Anjou it appears that, even when a charter was contested in the lifetime of the listed witnesses, the witnesses called upon for testimony might actually be different from those listed.25 There are virtually no records of written charters being cited as proofs against the challengers of their content. A substantial disjunction exists between text and life experience when the discursive claim is made by donors within charters that they wanted their gifts to be permanent for there is much evidence of other people’s or even of the donor’s own, challenges to those very gifts whose permanency was presented as surrounded by various modes of assurance, among them the charter itself.26 The textually expressed purpose of the charter, initially, was to provide such assurance, but neither its recording of actions, nor of the names of those witnesses who would have to testify to these actions in case of a contestation, seem to have resulted in the completion of such actions. Though often denominated “obstacles to oblivion,” charters nevertheless appear to have failed in their function of preserving memory and were not necessarily invoked when land transfers were actually challenged. This may indicate that, during the period under consideration, expert memory was continuously assembled in numerous settings where the working intelligence of daily life was repeatedly reshaped and constituted as the base of the knowledge of the past. Similarly, the permanence associated with a gift of land may not simply have involved possession of the land and its use. It also involved and required regular challenge, because in order to be preserved, 24

Tabuteau, Transfers of Property, pp. 11–12, 148–149, 212. Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou et sort entourage, vol. 2, pp. 18–20; Barthélémy, “The Serf, the Knight,” p. 24, citing cases from the Loire Vallée, disputes Guillot’s statement. Barthélémy’s eagerness to show that notices were produced with clear functional purposes to which they were adequate is well taken; his perception of the charters and notices’ functional purposes, however, remains itself too dependent upon a traditional conception of acta as primarily legal instruments. 26 See such cases in Tabuteau, Transfers of Property, p. 113, and in White, Laudatio Parentum, passim. Cases of charters that seem dysfunctional with respect to their explicitly intended purposes are numerous but there also exist instances in which charters were produced in support of claims. My purpose, in focusing on the dysfunctional, is to show that charters operated well beyond the legal and economic spheres assigned to them by modern scholarship, see above at note 8. Since the publication of an earlier version of this chapter (Bedos-Rezak, “Diplomatic Sources and Medieval Documentary Practices: An Essay in Interpretive Methodology,” The Past and Future of Medieval Studies, ed. John Van Engen (Notre Dame and London, 1994), pp. 313–343), the agency and efficacy of medieval charters have received much attention; for a selective bibliography on the question, see chapter 6 below at note 55. 25

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ownership had to be seen as being preserved. Permanence also inhered in the very social relationships that were created, maintained, and continued to operate throughout the ongoing negotiations surrounding titles to land and revenues. For the negotiations and settlements of disputes involved both donors and beneficiaries, and their groups of witnesses as well, that is, a whole society addressing the complexity of its inner hierarchy and dynamics. The permanence of gifts was thus conceived as part of an ongoing process, not as a static situation, and was the necessary framework for the definition of social groupings. Acculturation to Documentary Practices In the eleventh and early-twelfth centuries, charters were part rather than proof of those processes by which land was transferred. To see this period of the Middle Ages as having a history without texts would indeed be excessive. Yet charters may be best considered as written objects rather than as texts since they were not produced by their lay donors, were written in a foreign language and could not be easily deciphered, since in short, as written texts, they existed outside the living experience of the great majority of medieval people. By considering their nature as objects, the medievalist elicits their role in rituals, in the visual, tactile, and auditory sensitivity of medieval people. This enables an understanding of documentary writing as a scripture, as an inscription of order, as a medium operating through a strong sense of the holy, and itself as mediation between the earthly and the divine. If a function of communication is to be part of an understanding of these charters, medievalists must seek to uncover the various modalities of the non-literate legibility of such documents. Charters had levels of signification, since they were publicized, engraved on the doors of cathedrals or of city walls,27 and since ultimately concrete writing of things ceased to be marginal and symbolic, becoming for the lay aristocracy an integral and defining project of documentation. Charters progressively came to acquire those legal meanings and functions of proof and title deeds they were later analyzed as having, though never

27 Examples from Arras, Blois, and Germany are given in Favreau, “Fonction des inscriptions au Moyen Age,” pp. 210–214. Sustained exchanges between the disciplines of epigraphy and of diplomatics would be fruitful.

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to the point, I think, where they should be considered mere repositories of evidentiary texts. Any proper consideration of Northern French charters between 1000 and 1230 must take into consideration the fact of their rapid multiplication, the processes by which clerical scribes convinced nonliterate laymen to transact affairs by means of writing and by which the secular nobility came to adopt a literate mode, the ultimate success of which was clearly dependent upon their own willingness to participate. Ample evidence of vigorous monastic scribal activities testify, among other things, to the important role of monks in acculturating the laity to documentary practices. This role is increasingly obvious to us today, and it appears that the format of the lay aristocratic charter evolved in the specific historical and ideological context of the churchmen’s need and preference for writing, but the modes of acculturation have yet to be unraveled from the evidence of empirical practices.28 A systematic study of aristocratic command within final clauses of charters that transactions or agreements be put into writing, would be instructive for tracing the increasing participation of the laity into literate modes, and the moments and circumstances of its initiative in the matter. Whether, and if so when, at some point monastic scriptoria acted on behalf of the nobility as writing bureaus even for those gifts not made in these monks’ favor might also shed light on the ways in which the laity came to resort to literate modes and to conceptualize the notion of a chancery for its own use. Ultimately princely charters came to be drafted in princely chanceries. Evidence of a chancellor is attested around 1080 in Anjou,29 ca. 1107 in Blois,30 ca. 1106–1135 in Normandy,31 ca. 1125

28 In his Begging Pardon and Favor. Ritual and Political Order in early Medieval France (Ithaca and London, 1992), pp. 207–213, 241–288, Geoffrey Koziol analyses instances of diplomatic discourse in which monastic scribes display sensitivity to the status of the charters’ authors, thus producing documents that would be acceptable to these authors as enhancements of their eminence. More generally, Koziol argues that diplomatic discourses varied according to regional structures of political authority. 29 Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou, vol. 1, pp. 420, 422. 30 Michel Bur, La formation du comté de Champagne (Nancy, 1977), p. 425. 31 Walter Prevenier, “La chancellerie des comtes de Flandre dans le cadre européen a la fin du XIIe siècle,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 125 (1976), pp. 34–93, at p. 46; see also Thérèse de Hemptinne, W. Prevenier, Maurice Vandermaesen, “La chancellerie des comtes de Flandres (12e-14e Siècle),” in Landesherrliche Kanzleien im Spätmitelalter (VI. internaz. Kongreß für Diplomatik, München, 1983), 2 vol., (Munich, 1984), vol. 2, pp. 433–454.

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in Champagne,32 and ca. 1136 in Flanders.33 Though clerics continued to form the staffs of these secular chanceries, potentates nevertheless now secured for themselves control of those documents written in their own names, which previously had typically been drawn up by the scribes of the recipient ecclesiastical institutions. However, while it is clear that this evolution involved the increase, not of lay literacy but of an irreversible lay use of and accommodation to written documents, this sequence has been noted rather than analyzed. Cited as a de facto premise for studies on literacy, it has been considered as an epiphenomenon of administrative evolution, as a consequence of the revival of Roman law, or simply as a by-product and the instrument of economic growth.34 The lay adoption of literate modes has not been posited as a cultural reorientation with its own sphere of modalities and significance. Yet, in Northern France, lay aristocratic participation in documentary practices actually preceded all these administrative, legal, and economic developments. Having discussed the uses, meanings, and effects of charters within the society that produced them, I wish to outline further a few lines of inquiry. It was over gifts of land that the noble and the scribal worlds met, and noble assimilation to documentary forms cannot be separated from a consideration of the value system inherent in specific uses

32 Theodore Evergates, The Aristocracy in the County of Champagne, 1100–1300 (Philadelphia, 2007), pp. 8, 11, 16 places the appearance of a chancery during the rule of Count Henry I (1152–1181). There seems, however, to be references to chancellors as early as ca. 1125, Bur, La formation du comté de Champagne, p. 426. 33 Prevenier, “La chancellerie des comtes de Flandre,” pp. 34 sq.; Hemptinne, Prevenier, Vandermaesen, “La chancellerie des comtes de Flandre.” Both these studies qualify some of the earlier remarks by Henri Pirenne, “La chancellerie et les notaires des comtes de Flandre avant le 13e siècle,” in Mélanges Julien Havet (Paris, 1895), pp. 733–748. 34 The following studies, based on an implicit acceptance of a revival of documentary modes in tandem with general legal, economic, or administrative developments, provide excellent insights into the operation of literate modes within the medieval mentality from the eleventh century onward: Brian Stock, The Implications of Literacy (Princeton, 1983), pp. 32–34, who is sensitive to the fact that the process by which the medieval literate culture shaped itself is poorly understood; Franz H. Bäuml “Varieties and Consequences of Medieval Literacy and Illiteracy,” Speculum 55 (1980), pp. 237–265; Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record. England; the series Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy, ed. Marco Mostert, gathers an ever growing corpus of publications dealing with the history of non-verbal, oral and written communication in the Middle Ages. For a study on literacy that concludes that “literacy was there to be simply acquired, and it was acquired simply because it was there,” see Simon Franklin, “Literacy and Documentation in Early Medieval Russia,” Speculum 60 (1985), pp. 1–38, quotation p. 38.

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of landed property.35 According to the charters, land, and therefore wealth, circulated through gift. Gift is a peace-time mechanism for the redistribution of landed wealth. It was through land alienation, and no longer through land plundering, that the nobles might enhance their prestige by behaving generously and by controlling the structure of their environment. Inspired by the Peace of God, a notion began to enter noble culture that rights won by arms could no longer provide an absolute and legitimate justification for status and land-holding. It is quite possibly in connection with this reassessment of the place of warfare within the noble ethos that the relevance of documentary modes for rights over the land established its importance within the lay aristocratic mentality. As a result of the zeal of tenth- and eleventh-century reformers, the monastic attitude to religion progressively penetrated the aristocracy which, by the eleventh century, was accustomed to be concerned about the Day of Judgment,36 and to consider its penitential needs as being directly related to its proclivity for warfare. The crux of the issue seems to have been the redemptive significance achieved by pious gifts.37 The relationship created between lay donors and religious institutions involved God and his saints, and ultimately was based on the lay concern for salvation. The eleventh and twelfth centuries were the great period of donationes pro anima, donations for the soul, which involved a lay gift of land to an abbey in exchange for the donor’s and selected beneficiaries’ redemption of sins and salvation after their deaths.38 This linkage of and reciprocity 35 For an analysis of the uses made of property as part of a history of ideas, see Barbara Rosenwein, To Be the Neighbor of Saint Peter: The Social Meaning of Cluny’s Property, 909–1049 (Ithaca and London, 1989). 36 On the centrality of salvation within aristocratic spirituality, see Constance Bouchard, Sword, Miter and Cloister. Nobility and the Church in Burgundy, 980–1198 (Ithaca and London, 1987), pp. 225–229, 241–246; Howe, “The Nobility’s Reform of the Medieval Church,” 333–334; Gerd Tellenbach, Church, State and Christian Society (Oxford, 1959), p. 84. 37 S. White, “ ‘Pactum . . . Legem Vincit et Amor Judicium’: The Settlement of Disputes by Compromise in Eleventh-Century Western France,” American Journal of Legal History 22 (1979), pp. 291–309, at pp. 302–306 (reprinted in his Feuding and Peace-Making in Eleventh-Century France [Aldershot, 2005], V), who enlarged his argument in Laudatio Parentum, chapter 5, with specific developments on the extraeconomic significance of land and land transactions in medieval society. 38 Gasnault, “Les actes privés de St Martin de Tours,” p. 43; Brunel, Recueil des actes des comtes de Pontieu, p. xl; Vercauteren, Actes des comtes de Flandre, pp. viii, xx, xlv; Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, pp. 29, 35; Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou, II, passim; Nieus, Les chartes des comtes de Saint-Pol, nos 1, 4, 5, 9, pp. 83–84, 87–90, 93.

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between religious and lay interests was crucial for the development of the mechanisms of property transfer, principally by means of the written record. It is indeed in the area of property law that orality came largely to be superseded. Yet, in the twelfth century, writing did not secure the stability of gifts. Gifts were social actions which were represented not as abstract categories, but as events embedded in, and expressive of, a given social network. The referents of such social acts were actual circumstances which were to be remembered in the form of particular lived experiences. Charters articulated and gave meaning to a specific social structure. They had not yet evolved into trans-temporal compositions functioning as their own referents; they encapsulated the present, but could not control the future, that is, provide permanence and stability, because they had not achieved self-referential authority. The Authentication of Charters: Persons, Signs, Seals A tendency toward such authoritative format may be inferred from the evolving modes of documentary enforcement. Divine maledictions or the sign of the cross had attempted to bring supernatural sanctions to bear. Power for the maintenance of permanent donations came to be also vested in, or to be the responsibility of, a certain category of individuals termed viri authentici, viri boni, viri legales, or viri legitimi.39 The formulae pro anima and lay eschatological concerns were already present in early medieval charters, also expressing the notion that gifts of earthly property involved heavenly salvation: Marculfi Formulae, ed. Karl Zeumer, Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Legum V. Formulae (Hannover, 1886), pp. 74, 75, 76, 78, 98, 100, Heinrich Fichtenau, Arenga. Spätantike und Mittelalter im Spiegel von Urkundenformeln (Cologne, 1957), pp. 143–144. What is new in eleventh-century charters is the systematic association between gifts of land to saints, their redemptive effects, and concerns for their memory and stability. See an analytical survey of the purposes and functions of gifts to saints in White, Laudatio Parentum, pp. 74–76, 154–156; Bouchard, Sword, Miter and Scepter, pp. 225–246; Rosenwein, To Be the Neighbor, pp. 41, 136–139. 39 Charters containing mention of viri authentici have been identified in the card catalogue of the Novum Glossarium Mediae Latinitatis (Nouveau Du Cange), IRHT and now Institut de France (Paris). The specific function of the homo legitimus in England has been analyzed by Charles Odegaard, “Legalis Homo,” Speculum 15 (1940), pp. 186–193. Discussions about viri authentici have remained inconclusive with regard to their status and function. No in-depth study of the topic is available; see the few comments in Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou, vol. 2, pp. 16–18; Auguste Dumas, “Etude sur le classement des formes des actes,” Le Moyen Age 43 (1933), pp. 81–97, 145–182, 257–264, at pp. 153–157; Boüard, L’acte privé, pp. 142, 230, 266; Tabuteau, Transfers of Property, pp. 151–153, 156; Bernard Guenée, “Authentique et approuvé. Recherches

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Whenever these individuals are identified, they are men, never women, of some authority and distinction, and they are specifically presented as known. They may include the local count, castellan, or bishop, dignitaries who exercised judicial functions. Most often, however, they are invoked in the charters as an anonymous group of men, whose suitable presence and “authentic” quality gave worth to the transaction and to its written record. This anonymous rendering makes it difficult now to evaluate whether such worth derived from these individuals’ moral, political, or military character. Local knowledge must have informed the specific composition of such groups whose members clearly enjoyed a local reputation. Their participation in the act, and in its recording, was as particular individuals, based on their status within the community that had faith in them. Yet, it was precisely as an anonymous group that these witnesses displayed an official character. They constituted a category, and although authenticity may also have emanated from their authority as individuals, it is possible to perceive here the use of an a-temporal category which extended living memory and its credibility across time, and which implied the abstract concept of office. With the appearance of seals on episcopal and aristocratic charters in the late eleventh century, the quality of authenticity became inherent in the seals themselves and in the sealed charters, that is, in objects (Fig. 4).40 The authentic charter was an iconic document in which several systems of signs—the letter, the image, the heraldic emblem— entertained a symbiotic relationship. The traditional scholarly view of the medieval seal has focused almost exclusively on its function in the authentication of written documents. This classical conception, while accurate, is perhaps incomplete for a phenomenon which

sur les principes de la critique historique au Moyen Age,” in La lexicographie du latin médiéval et ses rapports avec les recherches actuelles sur la civilisation du Moyen Age: Colloques internationaux du C.N.R.S., 589 (Paris, 1981), pp. 215–229, at pp. 216–217, reprinted in Guenée, Politique et histoire au Moyen Age (Paris, 1981), pp. 265–278; Bongert, Recherches sur les cours laïques, p. 257; Jan Ziolkowski, “Cultures of Authority in the Long Twelfth Century,” Journal of English and Germanic Philology (JEGP) 108 (2009), pp. 421–448, at pp. 429–430. I wish to thank Professor James Simpson for bringing this essay to my attention. 40 On the diffusion of-seal usage within French society, see below, chapters 6–7; Bedos-Rezak, “The Social Implications of the Art of Chivalry: The Sigillographic Evidence (France, 1050–1250),” in The Medieval Court in Europe, ed. Edward Haymes, Houston German Studies 6 1986), 142–175, reprinted in Form and Order in Medieval France. Studies in Social and Quantitative Sigillograpby (Aldershot, 1993), VI.

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presents much broader implications. For in the Middle Ages, the seal was a fact of civilization, and its perception merely as a means of documentary validation would fail to take adequate account of the additional dimensions which provide insights into the medieval construct of social identity. A new goal for medievalists, therefore, would be to present seals as a medium for several cultural discourses: political, familial, individual, and gender, and to assess seals’ specific participation in the very social processes they expose. Study of the social and cultural implications of seals must involve an understanding of the objects themselves. The seal presents a dualistic aspect. For the matrix, engraved intaglio, impressed a raised image upon a secondary surface, most often of wax or lead (Fig. 5). This technical definition would appear to obscure many cultural nuances pertaining to seals as implements of social importance. Such a definition, however, does underscore the essence of seals as active agents, the value of which lies in their creative capacity, in their power of becoming (the impressions) as well as simply of being (the intaglio matrices).41 This regenerative potential lies close to the essence of living things—not of inanimate objects—and herein may lie the representational capacity of seals. Seals were active extensions of their users. The seal matrix, designed to be impressed into a receptive surface, was carved in the negative. In this form seals were “inner-directed,” functioning as quasi-amuletic objects, and as personal accoutrements of status. When impressed, the seal projected a three-dimensional image and any inscription included within the seal device became legible. In this outward-directed form, the seal functioned as a sign, conveying identity, status, prestige, and power-covenant. Since the seal operated through the medium of its progeny, as a progenitor, and was intended for repetitive use under a wide variety of circumstances, it had to display the most essential elements of a sealer’s identity. This rendered the choice of titles especially significant, and the resultant textual impressions provide a coherent continuum of social vocabulary which may be analyzed by comparison with changing usages within charters and literary sources. The issue of identity also rendered the choice of image

41 On seals as active agents, see Margaret Cool Root, The Art of Seals: Aesthetic and Social Dynamics of the Impressed Image from Antiquity to Present (Ann Arbor, 1984), pp. 8–9, 17, 18.

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important,42 for on seals in particular, text and image participate in a single discourse, the dialectic of which involves the linkage of a personal identity, specified in a seal’s legend, to a more general group orientation, inherent in its iconography. On their seals kings invariably appear enthroned with regalia (Fig. 6), lay magnates are equestrians in arms (Fig. 7), noblewomen are endowed with attributes of virginity and fertility (Fig. 8), and bishops (Fig. 9) and abbots (Fig. 10) are garbed in ecclesiastical vestments. For these social categories, the underlying convention dictated that seal owners be represented as categories and not as individuals. The seal’s iconography thus fostered a symbology of power and articulated organizing principles of society, while the personal identification of its individual owner was totally dependent upon an inscription. This relationship between a seal’s text and image involved neither complete complementarity, nor redundancy, nor a tension of opposites; rather it created a space in which the particular (written legend) and the collective (image) combined to generate an identity that was operative in itself, and that constituted a mode by which medieval society could distinguish its essential elements. An extensive data base exists for the analysis of this particular representational system and its social framework, which analysis provides insight into the mechanisms and implications of social encoding:43 How much of a given social group’s actuality depended upon the modalities of its representation?

42 Pictorial renderings on seals are referred to by the sealer as his image, imago mea; see below, chapter 7, for an analysis of this concept and practice of imago with reference to the contemporary theological category of likeness. 43 I have assembled a corpus of some 500 seals prior to 1200, which are analyzed in the following essays, all reprinted in Form and Order: Bedos-Rezak, “Les sceaux juifs français,” in Art et archéologie des Juifs en France médiévale, ed. Bernhard Blumenkranz (Toulouse, 1980), pp. 207–228; Bedos-Rezak, “Signes et insignes du pouvoir au Moyen Age: le témoignage des sceaux,” Comité des Travaux historiques et scientifiques. Section de philologie et d’histoire jusqu ‘en 1610. Actes du Cent Cinquième Congrès national des Sociétés savantes [Caen, 1980] (Paris: CTHS, 1984), pp. 47–62; BedosRezak, “Women, Seals and Power in Medieval France, 1150–1350,” in Women and Power in Medieval and Early Modern Europe, ed. Mary Erler and Maryanne Kowaleski (Athens and London, 1988), pp. 61–82; Bedos-Rezak, “Medieval Women in French Sigillographic Sources,” in Women and the Sources of Medieval History, ed. Joel T. Rosenthal (Athens and London, 1990), pp. 1–36; Bedos-Rezak, “Towns and Seals: Representation and Signification,” in Town Life and Culture in the Middle Ages and Renaissance: Essays in Memory off. K. Hyde, ed. Brian Pullan and Susan Reynolds, Bulletin of the John Rylands Library of Manchester 72 (1990), 35–48.

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Other critical elements of the sigillographic process include the modalities of sealing practices and the circumstances of their diffusion. I began to examine broad patterns of sealing after systematically gathering and analyzing an exhaustive corpus of French seals prior to 1200.44 This investigation revealed that, until the eleventh century, the use of seals for documentary validation was virtually confined to the royal chancery. By the middle of the eleventh century, documentary seal usage extended to bishops and lay magnates.45 There is much evidence indicating a new consciousness within the elites of their own relationship to signs. The spread of episcopal seals is coterminous with contemporary theological debates on eucharistic and sacramental semiotics.45 A striking characteristic of the nobility during the eleventh and twelfth century is the way it constituted itself as a group in part through the agency of its seals. For seals served as symbols of this nobility’s principles and self-image when displaying the equestrian warrior (Fig. 7), of its kin structure when showing heraldic devices (Fig. 11), of its members’ sense of personal identity when rooting every perception of the self only within the group, whether that of the functional order—those who fight—or of the family. Aristocratic seals seem to indicate that the medieval sense of self was about resemblance, that the self was itself the sign that signs of representation were in conformity with reality. But what reality? Seals, while offering their owners a means of literate participation and operating as literate forms in a scribal context, also evoked and incorporated many elements of current practice and symbolism. In their physicality they were successors to those symbolic objects that had previously actualized transactions. And, as already mentioned, seals also included an image, as though an icon were needed to authenticate writing. According to Gilbert Crespin, Abbot of Westminster (1085–1117), “just as letters are the shapes and signs of spoken words, pictures exist as the representations and signs of writing.”46 The power that came to inhere in seals therefore had several dimensions: as an inscribed object, the seal authenticated an

44

See above, note 43 See below, chapter 6. 46 Quoted in Michael Camille, “The Book of Signs: Writing and Visual Differences in Gothic Manuscript Illumination,” Word and Image 1 (1985), pp. 133–148, at p. 135. 45

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individual; by its iconographic device, social structure and written language; by means of its impression, a particular document. Seals guaranteed participation to and absolute provenance for the written records of any author since, no matter how many impressions might be needed over time, their graphic consistency were more reliable than the simple signs and impersonal subscriptions which had been previously used. The unique verifiability of a sigillographic commitment also involved, at first, a greater allocation of individual responsibility. The network of witnesses to a transaction and to its drafting came to be replaced by the seal, which now was routinely announced in the charters as the witness to the transaction.47 In this way, the written word was to some extent emancipated from the limitations of direct human testimony just as the legal rights and responsibilities of groups increasingly were shifted toward individuals. So in the early steps of its dissemination, documentary writing also bears upon the position of the individual within society, since the spread of written contracts led to a devaluation of traditional wider networks of kin or vassalic solidarities and interactions. The Scope of Medieval Charter Referentiality In the next steps of its dissemination writing achieved, by a twofold reification, self-referential status. Seals, in embodying the characters of their owners, their fame, their authority, their authenticity (all three qualities are interchangeable in the period under consideration), impressed the charter with their strength. By the thirteenth century, seals were, in Northern France, mandatory signs of documentary validation. The authentic charter, that is, a self-referential authoritative deed, which might also be a forgery,48 had come into being. Signs of its reified status are the development of specific characteristics that

47 The list of witnesses had disappeared by the early thirteenth century and from then on the seal is the only witness to the charter: . . . in cujus rei testimonium, presens sriptum sigillo nostro fecimus roborari. . . . On the appearance of these formulas see Brunel, Recueil des actes des comtes de Pontieu, p. cx, and Arthur Giry, Manuel de diplomatique (Paris, 1894), p. 575. 48 On the distinction between diplomatic authenticity which deals with forged documents, and legal authenticity which deals with documents having intrinsic legal force, see Georges Tessier, “La diplomatique,” in L’Histoire et ses méthodes, ed. Charles Samaran, Encyclopédie de la pléiade 11 (Paris, 1961), pp. 633–676, at p. 671, and chapter 7 below at note 105 and p. 203.

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defined its material essence. Thus, the notion of the authentic charter came to mean that it was an original document and not a copy, that it displayed specific textual forms, and that it was in good condition.49 If one level of reification stimulated material definitions of the charter, the other empowered the social representations of diplomatic discourse to act as standards of social being. These material and textual processes of reification operated reciprocally so as to create within the charter the seemingly self-evident cohesion upon which were predicated the workings of self-referentiality. In becoming a necessity for the operation of trust and credibility, the authentic charter replaced a structure of society in which the reliability of the written word and that of its contextual social organization more actively reinforced one another. In being axiomatically credible, the authentic charter became normative. The circumstances for its efficacy no longer required an integrated community remembering the forms of actions of particular groups. Rather, the charter narrated specific circumstances in the formulaic terms of general truth. Increasing sensitivity to the problematic of evidence and of authority led medieval society on an experimental path that took it from recourse to the sacred, to dependency on the human and the local, to a concept of authenticity that had a sanctioned material form and a formulaic content. Thus authenticity became attached to law-bound objects, and charters’ self-referentiality gave way to a rule-referential quality, generated and controlled by authority. The fiction of selfreferentiality was not sustained for long, if at all. The operation of documentary authenticity, in depending upon an authority external to

49 Such are the definitions given in the decretals of Pope Innocent III (1198–1216), which were incorporated in the Decretales, systematically compiled in 1234 during the papacy of Gregory IX: X.2,22,6; X,5,20,4. Useful and detailed discussions of Innocent III’s rules for the criticism of suspect seals and documents appear in Reginald Poole, Lectures on the History of the Papal Chancery (Cambridge, 1915), pp. 152– 156; Mariano Welber, Sigillograhia. Il sigillo nella diplomatica, nel diritto, nella storia, nell’arte. Vol. 3: I sigilli nella storia del diritto medievale italiano (Milan, 1984), pp. 176–180; Peter Herde, “Urkundenkritik und Massnahmen gegen Fälscher,” in Beiträge zum päpstlichen Kanzlei- und Urkundenwesen im 13. Jahrhundert. (Kallmünz, 1961), pp. 102–103, 113–115; B. Bedos-Rezak, “The Efficacy of Signs and the Matter of Authenticity in Canon Law (800–1250),” forthcoming in Zwischen Pragmatik und Performanz. Dimensionen mittelalterlicher Schriftkultur, ed. Christoph Dartmann, Thomas Scharff, and Christoph Weber (Turnhout, 2010).

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itself, created an area for the development of such an authority. By the late fourteenth-century, the authentication of French documents was very much in the hands of royal officials, notaries and tabellions. Our linear conception of history has fostered a study of medieval Europe as an antecedent to, as the crucible of, or as other than, the modern West, with a consequently strong emphasis on those issues that are relevant to contemporary Western life. It is true that whatever past may be their subject, historians write primarily the history of their own times. However, the Middle Ages need not be seen in direct continuity or discontinuity with Western history. The felicitous rapprochement with anthropologists has shown that even where differentiated modalities of human experience are not part of the past, interpretive methods devised for their study may be relevant for past societies. The anthropology of living societies has inspired many medievalists to turn a renewed attention to law, demography, kinship, urbanization, marginalization, rituals, taboos, elites, minorities, emblems and totems (heraldry), and material culture. Medievalists can in turn contribute specific insights into the principles that govern their own relations to sources. Medieval historians have been accused of looking, not at the past, but at documents. Anthropologists have come to recognize that “doing ethnography is like trying to read (in the sense of ‘construct a reading of’) a manuscript—foreign, faded, full of ellipses, incoherences, suspicious emendations, and tendentious commentaries.”50 That which they call their data are their own constructions of other peoples constructions. Understanding what is said by the occurrence and preservation of documents and artifacts and through their agency, the identification of structures of signification therein, the assessment of these structures’ and of the modalities of their documentation’s, social ground, and import are all of primary concern for medievalists. They aim at the identification of the very terms of interpretation to which persons of the medieval past subjected their experience. Because of the nature of the medieval written word, as mostly manipulated within a clerical monopoly, medievalists have more than other historians been accustomed to look for the obliquity of their written sources. As a result medievalists rarely handle their sources without adopting a

50 Clifford Geertz, “Thick Description: Toward an Interpretive Theory of Culture,” in The Interpretation of Cultures (New York, 1973), pp. 3–30, at p. 10.

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critical approach to them. It is in the field of medieval studies that such techniques of documentary analysis as codicology, paleography, sigillography, philology, and linguistics have been finely honed. That such critique, in traditional diplomatics, has produced a typology of charters and of their internal and external characters, mostly with a view toward the establishment and perfection of a grid that precisely ascertains documentary authenticity, is not enough. In traditional medieval studies, documents of practice, once their authenticity is established, have tended to emerge as transparent texts which can assert objective truth independent of the subjective act that intended the document and of the operations of language within it. Such concepts led scholars to believe that they might read directly about tangible aspects of past experience. As a documentary and representative text, the medieval charter has been seen less as the cultural artifact of than as the selfinterpreting model created by a civilization for its economic, legal, and administrative purposes. Attention and explanation have therefore primarily focused on the actions the sources document. This attitude is of course shared by most historians of all places and periods who select their object of study, gather all documents relating to that object, study their documents from the viewpoint of this object with far less attention to the circumstances grounding documentary production, and try to resolve contradictions by applying the principles of authenticity and forgery, and by distinguishing legendary from historical documents. This technique does not invalidate documentary critique itself, nor should it prevent medievalists from reflecting further on their sources, an action which constitutes one of their great contributions to the hermeneutics of history. For attention to sources is not simply a technique and a method. It is at the very center of historical interpretation, since any source is primarily a source about itself, a form that outlines the contour of an absence, a sign that projects in the present since no other plane of duration gathers the historian and her source into the same instant, a text concerned with appearances noted in the present but occurring in the past, and an event carried by a material arranged in a pattern that still makes sense today.51 Acceptance and analysis of the source’s self-reflective nature enables medievalists to grasp the specific process of meaning production implied by the discursive and

51 This formulation is strongly inspired by Kubler, The Shape of Time, pp. 17, 19–20.

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existential mode of that source and permits the retrieval both of the ideological and evidential status of the text, and of the ideological and social standards from the past. Our recognition of past events is conditioned by the ideologies and assumptions of the scribes from the past, but it is still debatable whether what we retrieve is the medieval axis of reference and intelligibility. In fact, the medieval conceptual and textualized categories (God, land, salvation, proof, authenticity) that we use as representations of that society, as explanation that makes it intelligible to us, were in effect the very questions they had to explain through axiomatic truth. For the medievalist, all documents should be seen as at once true and false (a construct). They should inspire a dialectic between those operations of language that represent events and the modalities of documentary fabrication and conservation. Special concern is required for the crucial yet unyielding mimetic engagement between documentary form and that of society. In the relationship between interpretive positions and theoretical approach to sources, the source is too often simply there, somehow to be shaped by the conceptual approach to which it will be subjected, and is treated only from the viewpoint of its thematic content, not from that of its functional, symbolic, and cultural dimensions. It is not surprising that to this day diplomatics, even in its most positivist formulation, has not become part of the locus of concern or armamentarium of modern historians. Yet the problematization of sources may become increasingly central to the epistemological and hermeneutical apparatus of a discipline increasingly aware that archival work is fragmentary, and that history’s synthesizing formations are shaped by a research that remains specific, partial, selective, and an uncomfortable equilibrium between the aura of the documents and the discourse that names them and dictates their reception. The erudition associated with medieval studies need not alone lead to a substantiation of fact, but might also prompt attention to the material sense of writing, to the residual presence in it that informs our relation to, and our construction of, the past. Scholarship has shied away from practice and technicalities to the point where almost anything that places history in rapport with them has been classified as “auxiliary science.”52 As a new faculty member, I was once introduced as a dabbler “in all kind of antiquarian things.”

52

This remark is from Certeau, The Writing of History, p. 69.

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Yet history, medieval and other, is a practice mediated by technique, be that of deciphering and reading foreign languages, editing, encoding and decoding. None of these activities preclude the interpretive activity that is conventionally associated with the noble making of history. To the contrary, I hope that I have demonstrated, and will continue to argue, that Northern French charters reveal their fullest significance when analytical and interpretive attention is given to, and inspired by, their technicalities. A source must have objective materiality in order to be here. It denotes a past insofar as it refers to an absence, so historians of all hues must make as much of this presence as possible when the rest of their object of study is well beyond physical recovery.

CHAPTER TWO

TOWARD AN ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE MEDIEVAL CHARTER Quintilian observed that “it is often easier to achieve more than to achieve the same; producing an exact replica is very difficult.”1 Medieval scribes and, later, scholars of the French Ancien Regime have left us a legacy of texts known as copies which amply illustrate Quintilian’s observation. The work of medieval copyists may perhaps be seen as modulating something already written, as working with, and between, the lines of antecedent texts which, although considered by us as originals, were, through the treatment they received when copied, evidently capable of becoming something more, or something less. It is as if there were no original documents but only texts, tacitly unfinished, never fully complete, ever available for a later hand to re-present their contents yet again. Such a strategy for reproduction may have been based upon a belief that all documentary texts were equally functional, whatever the material format or the specific textual version in which they appeared. Because strict duplication seems to have been eschewed in producing the various versions of a single deed, it maybe that the so-called archetype was never an original document in our modern sense, but truly an “act” by which actions, transactions, or judgments were accomplished. In that sense, every surviving document reporting such events may best be understood as a copy. This formulation is not, of course, the standard doctrine espoused by modern diplomatists who, since Mabillon (d. 1707), have tended, more or less systematically, to assume the existence of an original document perceived as unique, of an Ur-text from which later versions necessarily had to originate, and against whose authenticity the adequateness of any other copy may and need be tested.2 The normative 1 Quoted by Gerald L. Bruns, “The Originality of Texts in a Manuscript Culture,” Comparative Literature 32.2 (1980), pp. 113–29, at p. 114. 2 Dom Jean Mabillon’s methodology is expounded in his De re diplomatica Libri VI (Paris, 1681). For analyses of Mabillon’s epistemological contributions to the discipline of history and of his role in the creation of the so-called “auxiliary sciences,’’ see Blandine Barret-Kriegel’s edition of Jean Mabillon, Brèves réflexions sur quelques règles de l’histoire (Paris, 1990).

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definition of a medieval diplomatic original is a document extant as a single parchment and exhibiting signs of validation (Figs. 1, 2, 12).3 Thus the characteristics of an original reside mainly in its format and in its physical aspect. In seeking to identify those qualities which separate originals from copies, the discipline of diplomatics has promulgated a theoretical principle that situates and substantiates authenticity itself within the physical uniqueness of original documents. Medieval scribes, however, those who undertook the actual work of reproduction, seem not to have been so concerned with unique and authentic originals in the same sense that Mabillon was. Indeed, the very signs identified by Mabillon and retained by subsequent generations of diplomatists as undoubted markers of authenticity—e.g., seals, handwriting, dates, chirographic inscriptions, lists of witnesses—were actually deemphasized by medieval copyists (Fig. 13). It is possible that memory alone was the principal antecedent of deeds recorded in charters of confirmation, pancartes, or cartulary entries. Furthermore, in a certain sense, every diplomatic text, whatever its format, has a claim to originality since it is a unique, handcrafted artifact. Any preexisting text from which a copy was made might thus have served as an exemplar. There seems to have been no equivalent to our modern concept of an “original” in the medieval lexicon, where the word authenticum, when used to refer to a charter or diploma, simply invoked its authority, not its temporal primacy.4 Originality can be a matter of authenticity, authority, or priority. How then are we to arrive at the medieval understanding of documentary originality which, I am suggesting, is possibly something other than the Ur-text posited by Mabillon? I propose here to examine the medieval concepts of “copy” and “original” by looking at the filiation of three groups of documents initially produced in northern France before 1200: first, all the acta given for and by the chapter of Saint-Fursy of Péronne; second, all the acta given for and by the abbey of Notre-Dame of Homblières; and third, all the acta given in the name of the counts of Ponthieu. The data of interest thus originate north of Paris, mainly in Picardy. In the case of the comital

3 M.T. Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record, England 1066–1307, 2d ed. (Oxford, 1993), p. 84. 4 Olivier Guyotjeannin, “Le vocabulaire de la diplomatique en latin médiéval: Noms de l’acte, mise par écrit, tradition, critique, conservation,’’ in Vocabulaire du livre et de l’écriture au Moyen Age: Actes de la table ronde, Paris 24–26 September 1987, ed. Olga Weijers, Etudes sur le vocabulaire intellectuel du Moyen Age 2 (Turnhout, 1989), pp. 119–134, at pp. 128–29.

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charters of Ponthieu, published by Clovis Brunel in 1930, we are dealing with a documentary corpus which, though articulated around the principle of authorship (the charters are all given in the name of the counts of Ponthieu), had no historical organic existence as such, since the charters were preserved in widely dispersed archives.5 Most of the charters of Saint-Fursy, gathered by William Mendel Newman and published by John Benton and Mary Rouse, were, on the other hand, historically constituted as an archive by the chapter ever since their production and entered into a, now lost, thirteenth-century cartulary.6 Similarly, a majority of the charters of Homblières, also gathered by William Mendel Newman and published by Theodore Evergates and Giles Constable, were organized as a medieval archive by the monks who produced a now lost cartulary around 1170.7 Contrasting these two formats of charter grouping, the modern gathering and the historical archival formation, may help bring into focus those dynamics which underlay the production, reproduction, and preservation of medieval charters. Even taking into account the destruction by fire, war, and other catastrophes, which obviously obscure the distinction between loss and simple absence, it is possible to detect significant patterns of charter preservation. There would seem to be three ways in which the diplomatic texts here under consideration might have existed before 1200. First, it is conceivable that they did not exist—here I refer to those texts whose only retrievable mention postdates the time of their alleged issue. Second, they may indeed once have existed, although evidence for their existence should not systematically be assumed merely from the presence of later copies. Medieval cartularies, for example, 5

Clovis Brunel, ed., Recueil des actes des comtes de Pontieu, 1026–1279 (Paris, 1930). William Mendel Newman and Mary A. Rouse, eds., Charters of St-Fursy of Péronne (Cambridge, Mass., 1977). The thirteenth-century cartulary is discussed at pp. 1–3, where the editors make it clear that they included in their edition texts not belonging to the archives of Saint-Fursy. Among the archives that contributed acta to this edition are those of the chapter of Noyon (no. 6), the abbey of Arrouaise (nos. 17, 22, 36, 37), Notre-Dame of Eaucourt (no. 2), the chapter of Arras (nos. 68, 69), Saint-Barthélémy of Noyon (no. 9), the abbey of Mont-Saint-Martin (no. 21), the Hotel-Dieu of Péronne (no. 58), and the abbey of Saint-Thierry of Reims (no. 30). 7 William Mendel Newman, Theodore Evergates, and Giles Constable, eds., The Cartulary and Charters of Notre-Dame of Homblières, Medieval Academy Books 97 (Cambridge, Mass., 1990). The lost cartulary of ca. 1170 is discussed at pp. 20–23; also included in the edition are acts issued by the abbots of Homblières or relevant to the abbey found in the archives of other monasteries: Ourscamps (no. 41), Mont-SaintMartin (nos. 46A, 76), Vicoigne (nos. 70, 82, 85, 105), Prémontré (no. 75), Ribemont (nos. 91, 91A, 92, 92A, 92B, 93, 94, 99, 101), and Saint-Quentin (nos. 100A, 104). 6

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usually register texts without specifying their provenance, and I have not assumed that an “original” was copied unless this is specifically claimed. On the other hand, vidimus charters refer to particular documents purportedly being “renovated.” The eighteenth-century Benedictines Dom P.N. Grenier and Dom Queinsert, who worked through Picardy’s archival holdings, never failed to mention the fact when they transcribed from a so-called “original” those copies they made which later entered the Collection Moreau and the Collection Picardie at the Bibliothèque nationale de France in Paris. The third and last category is of originals, which as earlier described have come down to us in a direct material sense. The Archival Profile of Saint-Fursy of Péronne Saint-Fursy of Péronne, the burial site of the Irish monk and missionary Fursa (d. ca. 650), had housed a community of Irish monks since the seventh century. The monastery survived the Northmen’s invasion of 880 and played an important role as a center from which the insular Irish culture spread to continental Europe. Sometime in the mid-eleventh century, Saint-Fursy was converted into a chapter of secular canons thus becoming a collegiate church. Its monastic past and subsequent secularization have left no documentary traces; there are neither extant nor copied charters for Saint-Fursy dated before the twelfth century. The fire that destroyed the church in 1130 may have claimed some charters, although the eighteenth-century Benedictine scholars still saw a fair number of originals pre-dating 1130. A cartulary, now lost, was composed in the thirteenth century, but the circumstances of its creation are unknown. A version of this cartulary is still extant but only in an abbreviated form produced in the seventeenth century.8 I have analyzed the filiation of the seventy-six SaintFursy documents ranging from 1102 to 1200. Only two originals are still extant, preserved in the archives of the beneficiaries of the dean of Saint-Fursy’s deeds.9 Twenty-three addi8

Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, pp. x, xiii–xviii. One, Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, no. 9, pp. 28–29, the charter given in 1122 by the treasurer of Saint-Fursy to the abbey of Saint-Barthélémy of Noyon, was kept by this abbey and never copied. The other, no. 38, pp. 55–57, was a chirograph given in 1177 by the dean of Saint-Fursy for the abbey of Vaucelles. The part of the chirograph that is still extant in the archives of Vaucelles was never copied, while the 9

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tional originals, though today no longer extant, were seen, transcribed, and described in the eighteenth century by Grenier or Queinsert, who give precious details about their physical appearance, including the state of their seals. Over half of the twenty-five originals still extant in early modern times predate 1150. All but three were entered in SaintFursy’s thirteenth-century cartulary; of these three exceptions, two were chirographs.10 Twenty of the now lost twenty-three originals came from the archives of Saint-Fursy. Fewer than half of these, which had been both preserved at Saint-Fursy and copied into its cartulary, were given in the names of authors other than the chapter of Saint-Fursy, and thus represented incoming documents which had been kept as both exemplars and copies; such authors included the pope, the archbishop of Reims, the bishop of Arras, and two local abbots (of Saint-Pierre of Honnecourt and Vermand), but only two laymen, Ralph, count of Vermandois, and Peter, castellan of Péronne. Therefore, more than half of the documents preserved and copied at Saint-Fursy were acta given in the name of the local chapter and dean, that is, outgoing materials. The fact that Saint-Fursy was able to preserve and copy deeds given in its own name resulted from the relatively large number of chirographs issued by its chapter and dean. A chirograph recorded an agreement between two parties and was written out in duplicate on a single sheet which was then cut in half, with each party receiving an actual half of the original document, usually authorized by the seal of the other party (Fig. 2). As a matter of fact, twelve of these now lost originals, that is more than half, were chirographs. They must have initially existed in duplicate, in the archives and cartularies both of Saint-Fursy and of the other parties concerned. Although chirographs might serve as a record of outgoing documentary production, diplomatists tend to deny chirographs this explicit function, insisting that their duplicate format version retained by Saint-Fursy, and now lost, was entered in Saint-Fursy’s thirteenthcentury cartulary. 10 First, Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, no. 9, pp. 28–29 (above, n. 9); second, no. 12, pp. 31–32, the version of a chirograph given in 1122 by the dean of SaintFursy to Notre-Dame of Eaucourt, in whose archive an eighteenth-century copy was made by Queinsert, thus implying that Saint-Fursy might have either lost its version by the thirteenth century or elected not to copy it within the thirteenth-century cartulary; and third, no. 19, pp. 37–38, a version of another chirograph given in 1126–35 by the dean of Saint-Fursy about Saint-Fursy’s land at Aubregicourt. Although the eighteenth-century copy of this latter document was made in Saint-Fursy’s archive, for reasons that are unclear the thirteenth-century cartulary had no copy of it.

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resulted from their role in settling property exchanges or agreements involving reciprocal obligations.11 Finally, forty-five out of the seventy-six charters (i.e., 59 percent) known to have been issued prior to 1200 have come down to us exclusively via medieval cartularies, with the bulk (forty charters) preserved within the lost thirteenth-century cartulary of Saint-Fursy.12 Only four of these cartulary entries were completely transcribed by the eighteenthcentury scholarly Benedictines, but in the absence of extant originals, Dom Grenier’s transcriptions from the cartulary clearly demonstrate that the cartulary contained carefully copied texts, though without mention of the charters’ physical aspects.13 The bulk of the cartulary entries without extant originals date from the last quarter of the twelfth century. One third of these, all charters but for one chirograph, are acta issued by the dean and chapter of Saint-Fursy. The remaining two-thirds are papal bulls and episcopal charters, though there are also two lay charters (issued by Ralph, count of Vermandois, and Philip, count of Flanders and Vermandois). To recapitulate: Saint-Fursy’s holdings of seventy-six texts dated prior to 1200 include twenty-five (one-third of the total) known from originals which span the eleventh and twelfth centuries, though with a concentration in the early part of the twelfth century. This suggests that the fire of 1130 cannot by itself explain the pattern of lost originals. Surviving originals, often in the form of chirographs, were for the most part issued by the dean and chapter of Saint-Fursy; they have also survived as cartulary entries. The forty-five texts that are known only from medieval cartularies, particularly Saint-Fursy’s thirteenthcentury cartulary, are primarily papal bulls and episcopal charters

11 Laurent Morelle, “Archives épiscopales et formulaire de chancellerie au XIIe siècle: Remarques sur les privilèges épiscopaux connus par le Codex de Lambert de Guines, évêque d’ Arras (1093/94–1115),” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250/ La diplomatique épiscopate avant 1250: Referate zum VIII Internationalen Kongress für Diplomatik, Innsbruck, 1993, ed. Christoph Haidacher and Werner Köfler (Innsbruck, 1995), pp. 255–67, at p. 264 n. 8, where the author cites several corpuses of and studies on episcopal charters, all supporting the conclusion that the chirograph was not used by the bishop as a means of keeping exemplars of deeds expedited in his name. See note 33 below. 12 The five charters not copied with the thirteenth-century cartulary of Saint-Fursy come from the twelfth-century cartulary of the abbey of Arrouaise (two), from the thirteenth-century cartulary of the chapter of Noyon (one), and from the thirteenthcentury Livre blanc of the chapter of Arras (two). 13 See for instance Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, no. 62, pp. 70–71.

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which date from the late twelfth century. This may have been the time when the now lost cartulary of Saint-Fursy was initiated, which may well suggest a tendency of discarding incoming materials after they had been copied. Significantly, those acta issued in the name of the dean and chapter of Saint-Fursy, and known only from the cartulary of Saint-Fursy, also tend to date from the second half of the twelfth century; furthermore, they are charters, and not chirographs as in the earlier period. This suggests, first, that once the cartulary was in operation the dean and chapter used it to enter their own outgoing deeds and, second, that chirographs may have, after all, also involved a concern for registering outgoing production.14 In examining the cartulary entries as a whole, by far the largest proportion was devoted to deeds issued in the name of Saint-Fursy, which record the alienation of land by the chapter of Saint-Fursy but do not refer to the chapter’s rights and possessions. It is therefore not possible to trace the ways in which the chapter’s patrimony was originally constituted since no reference is made to earlier donations or endowments. None of the charters from the Saint-Fursy corpus mentions the ritual manipulation of charters, such as their placement on altars, or their roles as symbolic objects in the conveyance of property. Interestingly, neither the original charters nor the cartulary assert the antiquity or the rights of the house. The pattern of archival holding, and of copying, emphasizes the documentary authorship and initiative of the dean and chapter; no lay protector emerges for the church of Saint-Fursy, and little reference is made, and then only rather late, to episcopal or papal authority. To the extent that an identity is projected, it is that of a collegiate and independent church, with strong ties to other religious institutions, but with virtually no evidence of lay patronage, and with no memory of either its own monastic past or of the constitution of its patrimony. The central message projected by both the cartulary and the archival profile is that Saint-Fursy was engaged in a systematic documentary practice centered on administration rather than on proofs or assertion of property.

14

See above, n. 11, and below, n. 16 and 33.

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chapter two The Production and Reproduction of Charters at Notre-Dame of Homblières

Homblières, a former nunnery which became a Benedictine abbey of monks at the end of the tenth century, produced a cartulary ca. 1170 specifically to resolve a dispute with the nearby abbey of Saint-Nicolasdes-Prés of Ribemont. Though now lost, the cartulary itself, together with some medieval charters, was transcribed in the seventeenth century.15 Of the 107 known documents prior to 1200, 5 are still extant as originals, while 16 additional texts were transcribed directly from originals still extant in the seventeenth century. As with Saint-Fursy, these originals tend to belong to the earlier part of the period under consideration, with nine prior to 1100, another nine prior to 1150, and only three for 1150 to 1200. They all emanated from various donors and were copied into the cartulary of 1170, but for four charters issued by the abbots of Homblières, which were preserved in the archives of their beneficiaries. Homblières also produced a substantial number of chirographs, most of which date from the middle of the twelfth century and which seem to be responsible in part for the registration within the cartulary of those outgoing charters issued in the name of the abbot of Homblières.16 Only nine texts (including the four originals just mentioned) out of the twenty-eight given by the abbot of Homblières are found exclusively in the archives and cartularies of monasteries other than Homblières. These tend to involve concessions to the recipients of the acta, or settlements of disputes in which Homblières was either arbiter (rather man a party) or the losing party. Thus, the abbey seems to have maintained a comprehensive archive of its outgoing documents, with the preparation of a cartulary resulting at once in greater recording activity while rendering less necessary the retention of outgoing exemplars. Homblières’s cartulary, however, is more bal-

15 Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, pp. 14, 20; see at p. 22 a table clearly rendering the filiation of all known copies of Homblières’s thirteenthcentury cartulary. 16 In a chirograph of 1155–60 recording an exchange of land between the abbot of Homblières and the canons of Arrouaise living at Magières, the final clause reads: In hunc modum inter se scriptum confecerunt et sigillorum impressione ita consignaverunt ut ecclesia de Humbleriis habeat ipsum scriptum consignatum sigillo ecclesiae de Arroisia, et canonici apud Margellas commanentes idem scripturn habeant signatum sigillo ecclesiae de Humbleriis. Pactionis huius hi testes sunt . . .” (Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, no. 78, pp. 154–55, at p. 155).

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anced than Saint-Fursy’s, registering the protection and patronage of lay and ecclesiastical powers. Their incoming charters constitute more than half of the cartulary’s content. Those incoming charters which preceded the redaction of the cartulary were preserved both as originals and as cartulary entries. If the subsequent fate of Homblières’s archives ultimately leaves open the question of a purposeful destruction of originals in connection with the drafting of the cartulary,17 the very production of the cartulary seems to have been associated with two events. From an internal viewpoint, the cartulary displays a plethora of notices datable to the time of its production. In attempting to understand the origin of these many late cartulary entries, it is possible to suggest the hypothesis that Homblières might have maintained an inventory of minor oral transfers from the late eleventh century,18 which may have been further elaborated at the time of their entry into the cartulary. It is also conceivable that such notices were formulated directly from the memory of the cartularist who was contemporary with the transactions they record. In the cartulary title of one such notice, the knightly donor is called Rainerus “The Long,” a nickname which does not appear within the text of the notice itself. This interpretive insertion by the cartularist testifies to his familiarity with the event recorded independently of the preserved text.19 Whatever the antecedents of these notices were (memory, drafts, or inventories), it seems clear that the creation of the cartulary fostered an expanded textual format. The abbey seems to have remained economically viable until 1372, but there are very few documents to be found pertaining to Homblières after the completion of this cartulary. These later documents provide an extremely fragmentary picture of the history of the abbey, of which virtually nothing is known

17

Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, pp. 20–21, 30 n. 153: the abbey was abandoned in 1607, and its archives and cartulary were sent elsewhere for safekeeping. Both were seen and used in the first half of the sixteenth century. The cartulary had disappeared by the 1770s. 18 Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, p. 104. 19 Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, p. 163. For further discussions of the role of memory in cartulary redaction, see the studies in Olivier Guyotjeannin, Laurent Morelle, and Michel Parisse, eds., Les cartulaires: Actes de la table ronde organisée par l’Ecole nationale des chartes et le G.D.R. 121 du CN.R.S. (Paris, 5–7 décembre 1991), Mémoires et documents de l’Ecole des chartes 39 (Paris, 1993), particularly Laurent Morelle, “De l’original à la copie: Remarques sur l’évaluation des transcriptions dans les cartulaires médiévaux,” pp. 91–104, at pp. 100, 104.

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after 1250.20 Did the copying of charters into a cartulary somehow discourage donations by increasing their irreversibility? At the very least, the case of Homblières makes clear that the survival of outgoing acta was greatly jeopardized when dependent solely upon the archival policies of the charters’ recipients. The Dispersed Charters of the Counts of Ponthieu The counts of Ponthieu were originally the avoués, the protectors, of the abbey of Saint-Riquier; they adopted the comital title sometime in the middle of the eleventh century, when a scion of the lineage married the widow of a count of Boulogne.21 The 151 acta issued in the name of the counts of Ponthieu prior to 1200 have been collected. Only a very small number of such comital acts were preserved within the cartulary of Ponthieu. This was a lay project undertaken when Edward II, king of England, inherited the county of Ponthieu in 1290 and ordered the recording of all deeds implying rights of and upon the county.22 It bears repetition here that this grouping of comital documents was not constituted as a medieval archive but is a modern corpus, a gathering of charters originally dispersed among the various recipients of comital acta. The extent to which the survival of these charters has chiefly depended upon these recipients’ archival strategies is one of the issues that will be further considered here. Of the 151 acta, 43 (roughly a third) remain extant as originals. All forty-three originals were kept in the archives of beneficiaries, mostly religious institutions, but also in a few lay archives, royal or urban. This is a much higher proportion of extant originals than at SaintFursy and Homblières. Since their survival corresponds not to a specific archive but to a specific author, one may wonder if perhaps the counts had some particular interest in the preservation of the acta

20

Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, p. 15. Brunel, ed., Pontieu, pp. ii–iii. 22 Paris, BnF, lat. 10112; Ernest Prarond, ed., Le cartulaire de Ponthieu (Paris, 1897); Brunel, ed., Pontieu, xiv. Theodore Evergates, “The Chancery Archives of the Counts of Champagne: Codicology and History of the Cartulary Registers,” Viator 16 (1985), pp. 160–79, discusses briefly the chancery cartulary of Ponthieu at p. 161, and precedes his analysis of the cartulary registers of Champagne with a general review of secular cartularies at pp. 159–61. More recently, Lucie Fossier and Olivier Guyotjeannin have established a list of extant secular cartularies: “Cartulaires français laïques: Seigneuries et particuliers,” in Les cartulaires, pp. 379–410. 21

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produced and sealed in their names. Thus, ca. 1173–79, John, count of Ponthieu, in a charter for the abbey of Notre-Dame of Le Gard, which was never copied, specified that “ut hoc inconcussum atque durabile in eternum permaneat, cartam ecclesie Beate Marie de Gardo dedi, testium subscriptione ac sigilli mei appositione premunitam.”23 How strong a comital injunction to retain the charter this really is cannot now be fully ascertained, but the rhetoric is slightly unusual and, accompanied by the actual preservation of the charter, supports the hypothesis that lay authors may have desired and ordered the conservation of their own sealed deeds of charity. At any rate, the majority of the Ponthieu originals were comital foundations or confirmations of donations. All were sealed. Those abbeys which did not draft cartularies, such as Perseigne, tended to have vidimus charters made of earlier comital grants in their favor.24 Though the texts of all extant Ponthieu originals are also found in medieval cartularies of the thirteenth century onward, only the 1409 and sixteenth-century cartularies of the Templar house at Fieffes mention die seals.25 Apart from these exceptions, descriptions of seals otherwise are noticed only in seventeenthand eighteenth-century scholarly copies.26 Vernacular translations of Latin originals maintained in the archives of urban communities have survived from the fifteenth century onward.27 A further twenty-nine acta of Ponthieu, though now lost, were seen and copied from the originals, mostly by eighteenth-century scholars. However, in the medieval period vidimus charters were requested by those abbeys which apparently did not have a medieval cartulary at all

23 “In order that this grant remain intact and be preserved for ever, I gave a charter to the church of Notre-Dame of Le Gard and provided it with witnesses’ subscriptions and my appended seal;” Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 98, p. 141. A still extant original apparently not copied during the Middle Ages, this charter was nevertheless copied by seventeenth- and eighteenth-century scholars. 24 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 81, pp. 119–20. 25 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 49, pp. 74–75 (1154); no. 51, pp. 76–77 (1154); no. 65, p. 98 (1161); see below, n. 42. 26 See a seventeenth-century seal description by Gaignières in Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 18, pp. 32–33 (1112), at 33; François Roger de Gaignières (1642–1715) also drew the seal. Most of Gaignière’s seal drawings have been catalogued by Joseph Roman, “Les dessins de sceaux de la collection Gaignières à la Bibliothèque nationale,” Mémoires de la Société nationale des Antiquaires de France 9 (1909), pp. 42–158. 27 For instance: Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 60, pp. 89–91 (ca. 1159); no. 95, pp. 134–38 (1177); no. 109, pp. 157–66 (1184).

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(such as Saint-Pierre of Abbeville, whose Livre noir dates from 1487),28 which had late cartularies (such as the abbey of Ourscamps, whose cartulary dates from the fourteenth century),29 or by towns which did not register their deed (like Crecy or Waben).30 Surveying the use of vidimus charters in relationship to extant and lost originals, it appears that institutions without cartularies were more apt to have sought them. All twenty-nine of these now lost originals were sealed but for one, a mid-eleventh-century charter for Marmoutier that predates the comital practice of sealing.31 Finally, seventy-six comital acts of Ponthieu prior to 1200 are known only through copies, constituting half of the corpus under consideration. Among these are the earliest known comital charters, given for the abbey of Saint-Riquier, whose archives perished in a fire in 1131. These charters are known both through their transcription by Hariulf in his Chronicle of that abbey written between 1088 and 1104, and through an inventory of Saint-Riquier’s charters of 1098.32 Actually, comital charters of Ponthieu are not understandable according to a principle of filiation as were those of the chapter of Saint-Fursy and the abbey of Homblières. There is no clear-cut category of acta linked either to the originals or to copies as a class. However, even this observation may provide insight into the relationship between diplomatic

28 Texts from the Livre noir of Saint-Pierre of Abbeville, now lost, were copied in the eighteenth century; see Brunel, ed., Pontieu, 41. See a 1482 vidimus of a 1136–37 comital donation to Saint-Pierre at no. 25, pp. 40–43. 29 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 123, pp. 185–86, where the fourteenth-century cartulary is mentioned; Ourscamps had a vidimus made in 1233 by Simon, count of Ponthieu, of its comital privileges (no. 291, pp. 424–45); the vidimus is referred to as a carta transcripta. 30 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 131, pp. 198–200, at 198, where is given the filiation of Crecy’s charter of franchise (received from the count of Ponthieu in June 1194), and with it a survey of Crecy’s archival arrangements. Crecy obtained a vidimus of its charter of franchise in 1484 from King Charles VIII. Waben received its communal charter from the count of Ponthieu in April 1199 (no. 148, p. 225) and a vidimus of this charter from Simon, count of Ponthieu, in May 1235 (no. 298, pp. 433–35). 31 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 14, p. 27. 32 Hariulf, Chronique de l’abbaye de Saint-Riquier (Ve siècle-1104), ed. Ferdinand Lot (Paris, 1894); the 1131 fire, provoked by the count of Saint-Pol, is discussed at p. xxxvii; the inventory is edited in appendix IX, pp. 314–18. In his chronicle, Hariulf copied all charters given by the counts of Ponthieu and listed in the 1098-inventory but one, Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 2, p. 2 (1020–45). On Hariulf ’s relationship to the archival holdings of Saint-Riquier, which he selectively used as a source for his chronicle, and for specific reference to those documents which he did not include, see Laurent Morelle, “Histoire et archives vers l’an mil: Une nouvelle ‘mutation’,” Histoire et archives 3 (1998), pp. 119–141, at pp. 130–31.

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discourse and medieval archival strategies. Both the chapter and the abbey archived and recorded their textual holdings, tapping memory and rough drafts, keeping track of the outgoing documents they had authored, and organizing the incoming charters in their favor, which they had often originally scripted as well. Even when separated from their archival sequence, the comital charters of Ponthieu still share similar trends although manifestly emanating from, and recorded or archived in, different writing bureaus or scriptoria. Authority, Authenticity, and the Intertextuality of Diplomatic Discourse On the basis of the empirical observations made thus far, I would now like to explore the possibility that the format of the charter prior to 1200 itself may have, at least in part, evolved in synchrony with particular ideas about the role of text in projecting permanence and in enabling preservation. Ponthieu confirmations and notifications of land donations may be found in all three of the categories we have been considering: still extant originals, originals extant in the Middle Ages and now lost, and texts known to us exclusively in later versions. Cartulary entries record actions but not necessarily actions initially preserved in writing. These entries textualized without necessarily copying. Copying, however, was manifest in two different forms. First came the chirograph, which, as a duplicate text, enabled each party to keep a record. Perhaps chirographs, as has already been suggested here, should be seen as an antecedent of the copy for archival purposes.33 An abbey’s archival holding might thereby achieve a shift from passivity, that of mere recipient, to a more active posture, as an ongoing force in internal and local affairs. This conception emphasizes the role copying may have played in image-making: in the case of Saint-Fursy, and to a lesser extent of Homblières, the chirograph seems to have enabled such a shift in institutional profile. The other form of copying involved not straightforward duplication but the borrowing of pre-existing passages from diplomatic discourse: preambles, formulas, or geographic

33

See notes 11 and 16 above.

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descriptions.34 Here the concept of conceptualizing an original document gave way to a need to appropriate authoritative textual formats. There is no evidence that a written formulary circulated in Ponthieu, but many comital charters share discursive arrangements which, apparently independent of their loci of production, reproduction, or preservation, testify to the importance of textual repetition in documentary authorization. Yet copying is intertextual, not from original sources to secondary texts, but between various texts invested with the same agency. The function of such copying was to produce an original, that is, in medieval terms, an authoritative text. Narrative Form and Material Format: A Mutual Engagement I mentioned earlier, in discussing Saint-Fursy’s and Homblières’s holdings, that earlier texts seemed to have a better chance of surviving in charter format. Might these charters particularly have been kept because of their symbolic value, the part they played in the traditio of 34

Both charters (of 1100) by Guy, count of Ponthieu, for the Cluniac priory of Saint-Pierre of Abbeville relate the same event in similar but slightly different terms: one may have been the draft for the other (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, nos. 8, 9, pp. 10–20). In no. 8, the invocation and preamble have been borrowed from a diploma given by Philip I in 1075–76 to the same priory: Maurice Prou, ed., Recueil des actes de Philippe I er (Paris, 1908), no. 79, pp. 200–202. The charter (1145–71), extant as an original and confirming, in the name of William, count of Ponthieu, all donations made to the Cistercian abbey of Perseignes (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 81, pp. 119–20), took for its model the founding charter of Perseignes, given by Count William in 1145 and also still extant as an original (no. 32, pp. 52–56). Three of Count John of Ponthieu’s charters for the church of Saint-Josse-aux-Bois (Dommartin) show evidence of intertextual borrowings: no. 106, pp. 150–54 (extant original from 1183) was used in the comital charter no. 111, p. 167 (1183–85), which itself served as model for no. 112, pp. 167–72 (1185). Two comital charters granted for Valloires borrow various excerpts from each other (no. 72, pp. 107–9 [1170]; no. 103, pp. 146–47 [1183]). The preamble of another comital charter for Valloires (no. 144, pp. 216–20 [1198]) is also found in a charter of the bishop of Amiens, given in 1178 for Valloires. A grant of land to the leprosary of Val Buigny by John, count of Ponthieu, in 1186 (no. 114, pp. 174–75), simply repeats the invocation, preamble, pro anima formula, and corroborative clause from an earlier charter by the same count for the Val Buigny in 1177 (no. 95, pp. 134–38); both charters are extant as originals. The examples listed so far (which are discussed together with additional cases in Brunel, ed., Pontieu, pp. xx, lxxxix–xc, xciii–xcviii) support the notion that beneficiaries of comital generosity drafted and preserved those deeds granted in their favor, which enabled them to use earlier charters as models. However, the circulation of models went beyond institutional boundaries. Two comital charters for the Val Buigny (no. 108, pp. 155–57 [1180–84]; no. 126, pp. 188–91 [1191]), both still extant in the original, have the same preamble found in a charter of Thibaut, bishop of Amiens, given in April 1156 to the Cistercian abbey of Valloires.

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the privilege or land transferred? I wish to suggest that another element of resonance and effectiveness may be found in the narrative format of these documents. The narratives focus on human presence and gesturing, referring to witnesses, to the presence of local elites, to the kisses exchanged, to the oaths sworn.35 Even when such documents were sealed, the seal typically remained unannounced within the final clauses.36 The effect of such narratives located the act of initial recording within the medium, the single piece of parchment. After such a text was entered into a cartulary, however, there was no longer evidence of the document’s independent existence. It may well be, therefore, that it was the developing practice of textual reproduction that fostered a particular need to distinguish between various versions of a deed, a distinction which came to be articulated around material considerations. It is striking to note the coterminous appearance within diplomatic discourse of literary preambles which assert the use of writing as necessary to keep peace and memory,37 of narratives pointing 35 Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, no. 66, pp. 137–38 (1152). The knights and their wives confirmed their gift of land to Homblières by oath and transferred the land by placing branch and turf with their own hands before the image of Saint Hunegund: “hujus autem pactionis verba praefati milites cum uxoribus et liberis suis sacramento firmavere ipsamque terram ramo cespiteque sanctissimae virginis Hunegundis feretro propriis manibus in eleemosynam reliquentes posuerunt.” In two extant originals (1173), John, count of Ponthieu confirms possessions respectively to the abbey of Cercamp and to the church of Notre-Dame of Le Gard (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, nos. 87, 88, pp. 124–26), ending each charter with the following clause: “et sciendum quod hanc elemosinam ego, Johannes comes, et Guido, frater meus, presentibus prefatis testibus in manu Hescelini, tunc abbatis Caricampi, reddidimus.” In the charter (1159), still extant as an original, by which John, count of Ponthieu confirmed its possessions to the church of Saint-Josse-aux-Bois in the presence of the bishop of Amiens, the very final clause reads: “ego Teodericus, Dei gratia Ambianentium episcopus, presens scriptum Johannis, comitis de Pontivo, concessione ejusdem meo confirmo, et ne a quoquam ullo tempore unquam ausu temerario violetur, conturbetur, vel infringatur, pontificali auctoritate precipio, et pervasorem hujus rei a Patre, et Filio et Spiritu Sancto maledico, et donec resipuerit, ecclesiastica censura anathematizo. Amen. Amen” (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 62, pp. 93–95, at 95). On the medieval use of kisses to seal contracts, see Yannick Carré, Le baiser sur la bouche: Rites, symboles, mentalités, à travers les textes et les images, XI–XVe siècles (Paris, 1992). 36 See for instance the charters given by Ralph, count of Vermandois, to SaintFursy in 1110 (Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, no. 7, pp. 26–27), and by Baldric, bishop of Noyon, in 1112 (no. 8, pp. 27–28); the charters of William and Guy, counts of Ponthieu, respectively for the priory of Saint-Pierre of Abbeville (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 21, pp. 35–37 [1103–29]) and for the church of Anchin (no. 33, pp. 56–57 [1147]). 37 Preambles promoting the use of writing are numerous during the twelfth century. See for instance the charter of the abbot of Vermand for Saint-Fursy (Newman and Rouse, eds., St-Fursy, no. 42, pp. 59–60 [1182], at 59): “ego, Gillebertus, abbas Veromandi

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to the material aspect of the charter,38 to its drafting,39 and to its various manipulations,40 and of final clauses announcing in some detail the affixation of the seal.41 Diplomatic discourse of the late twelfth century came to focus less on the transaction’s human agency than on the steps taken for its recording and on the physical aspects of this recording. An important result of such narratives was that by describing the charter as an object within the text, the charter was freed from its former dependency upon a specific medium. Thereafter, whatever its material format, a kind of textual self-referentiality was achieved whereby the text-as-charter might continue to exist, whether

ecclesie, . . . propter labilis memorie fugam et nostri occasus instantiam vivacibus litteris notum esse volumus quod . . .” For preambles associating peace and writing, see the charter of John, count of Ponthieu (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 52, pp. 78–79 [1154], at 78: “ut pax ecclesie conservetur, et res sibi deputate integre permaneant, grandi cum cautela providendum est. Inde est quod vir sanctus loquebatur: ‘Propter fratres, inquit, meos et proximos qui in te habitant, loquebatur pacem de te, propter domum domini Dei nostri, que est in te, quesivi bona tibi.’ Quod vero ad eandem rem pertinet litteris imprimendo ad posteros nostros mittimus . . .”), or the chirograph of Garin, abbot of Homblières (Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, no. 71, pp. 144–46 [1155], at 145: “Quam quietissime viverent homines si duo verba e medio tollerentur, meum videlicet et tuum, sancta ecclesia ob concordiam filiorum chartularum reperit ingenium quatenus ipsarum lectione extinguantur litium flammae dato cuique suo jure”). 38 In this as in other charters, the count of Ponthieu draws attention to the materiality of the charter (Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 36, pp. 59–60 [1126–47], at 60): “predecessores nostri, sue paci ac nostre providentes utilitati, libertates et dona ecclesiarum scriptis publicis tradiderunt. Quorum exemplum ego Wido, gratia Dei comes Pontivensis, imitans, presentibus et futuris Ecclesie filiis hujus karte pagina volo notificari quod . . .” 39 The bishop of Amiens ordered the document written and divided as a chirograph between the two parties (Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, no. 47, pp. 106–8 [1142], at 107): “Quo praedicto modo factae commutationes ne aliqua in posterum oblivione aut occasione possint dissolvi, scripto eas mandari atque inter eos per chirographum dividi praecepimus, testiumque subscriptione et sigilli nostri impressione roborari curavimus.” 40 Charters deposited upon the altar: Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 73, pp. 109–10 (1119–70) (“Anno millesimo centesimo decimo octavo, Gaufridus de Ansnevilla firmavit cartam supradicte donationis, cum uxore sua Avitia, et filio suo Willelmo; ipsamque cartam posuerunt super altare Sanctae Trinitatis . . . Ego Willelmus, comes Pontivorum, concedo et confirmo sicut presens carta testatur . . .”); no. 81, pp. 119–20 (1145–71) (“Ego Vullelmus, Pontivorum comes et Alenconii . . . ad majorem confirmationem, ex propria manu mea super altare dicte abbatie posui presentem cartam sigilli mei munimine roboratam . . .”). 41 Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 105, pp. 148–49 (1183), at 149: “Igitur ut elemosina ista rata permaneat, presentem cartam siggilli nostri appositione firmatam posteris nostris legendam atque tenendam transmittimus . . . Recognita est autem hec donatio in camera apud Cresci, coram Beatrice comitissa, ipsa concedente et testante, que etiam in testimonium presenti carte siggillum suum apposuit.”

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in a cartulary or elsewhere. Two further conclusions may be essayed here. This newer “literate” narrative may account for the destruction of charters that sometimes followed the making of a cartulary, and for the preservation of earlier documents which had been couched in the earlier “human” narrative. The “literate” narrative may also account for the striking disinterest medieval cartularists evinced toward seals;42 they saw no need to mention seals specifically, or to reproduce them, since the seals came to be textualized within the diplomatic discourse itself. Textual retention of the sealed-charter format was thus important, though retention of the original charter itself may have become secondary. We must repeat here that the majority of deeds under scrutiny in this study have come down to us only in cartularized format. The phenomenon medieval diplomatists should be considering, in my opinion, is not so much the transformation of a putative original into a copy, but the medieval need for and process of repetition and re-enactment. Medieval documentary truths are in a sense the truths of action done double, of action re-produced. For it was when medieval society came to recognize itself through documents, that repetition—and I mean here registration, certification, cartularization—confirmed written records as testimonials. Whether in charters or in cartularies, a given diplomatic text belonged to an intertextual system, and was probably not understood as a discrete instance of discourse in isolation from the archive which contained it. The very fact that medieval charters were transmitted in several medieval formats may indicate that they had to be thus transmitted in order to achieve institutional validation and to become an object of knowledge. The appearance of 42 For some rare mentions of seals by medieval cartularists, see above, n. 25, and Newman, Evergates, and Constable, eds., Homblières, no. 52, pp. 115–16 (1145). Homblières’s medieval cartulary seems to have contained a drawing of the seal of Gerard, Lord of Ham, which the seventeenth-century cartularist copied (circa scutum sigillum Gerardi Hamensis domini), unless he was also able to see the original charter. General studies on the treatment of seals in cartularies include Emile Brouette, “Une source sigillographique méconnue,” Revue belge de numismatique et de sigillographie 101 (1955), pp. 113–120; Jean-Luc Chassel, “Dessins et mentions de sceaux dans les cartulaires médiévaux,” in Les cartulaires, pp. 153–170; Robert A. Maxwell, “Sealing Signs and the Art of Transcribing in the Vierzon Cartulary,” Art Bulletin 81 (1999), pp. 576–597; Laurent Morelle, “De l’original à la copie: remarques sur l’évaluation des transcriptions dans les cartulaires médiévaux, in Les cartulaires, pp. 90–104; Markus Spaeth, “Das ‘Regestum’ von Sant’Angelo in Formis. Zur Medialität der Bilder in einem Klösterlichen Kopialbuch des 12. Jahrhunderts,” Marburger Jahrbuch für Kunstwissenschaft 31 (2004), pp. 41–59.

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single-leaf charter-texts within cartulary codices may have been a primary sign that such texts were part of a canon of authorities, which in turn was to become the basis for yet other documentary formats such as subsequent confirmations from ruling elites. Thus the movement from charter, to cartulary, and back to charter is circular rather than linear, progressive, and hierarchical; such movement does not record a gradual loss of authority.43 The writing of a single diplomatic text could take several shapes in the Middle Ages, appearing as a charter, incorporated in a confirmation (pancarte), duplicated in a chirograph, entered into a cartulary, verified by a vidimus. Though all these formats contain evidence of duplication and may be seen as referring to a single transaction, they nevertheless do not simply involve replication. Even where a copy is textually identical, it typically is not, strictly speaking, a simple duplicate because it lacks autograph subscriptions and other signs of authorization such as the seal. In asking how medieval copies derived the means and meanings of their functions, and what these functions were, I would like to suggest, perhaps heretically, the possibility that, by eschewing precise replication while making “copies,” medieval scribes and their supervisors demonstrated that their goal was less to reproduce artifacts of the acts themselves than to maintain a process of textualization which would assure these acts’ ongoing canonization as discursive practices. Perhaps for medieval literati, the text remained open, even as they increased their dependency upon writing for the management and evidence of business, even as they framed their charters in formulas and signs which finalized the act of writing and authorized its results.

43 See for instance the acta of the counts of Ponthieu for the church of Saint-Josseaux-Bois. In the case of Brunel, ed., Pontieu, no. 61, pp. 91–92 (1159), two copies were made in 1586, one by a member of the Parisian Parlement from a now lost cartulary and the other by the greffier des francs-fiefs from a copy said to have been collated from the original. No. 104, pp. 147–48 (1159), no. 107, pp. 154–55 (1183–84), no. 111, p. 167 (1183), and no. 112, pp. 167–69 (1185) were also copied in 1586 from the lost cartulary by the Parisian parlementaire.

CHAPTER THREE

SIGN THEORY, MEDIEVAL AND MODERN The Role of Theory in Sigillography Presence, during the twelfth-century, appears to have been registered increasingly by artifacts, and no longer solely in human beings.1 Such an impression stems from an overview of the cultural landscape of this epoch (1050–1225), which offers texts, images, and artifacts in unprecedented numbers.2 Among the artifacts then newly and significantly visible were seals and sealed charters. Seals have a long history. Originating alongside if not actually preceding the invention of writing, sealing remained in most civilizations a significant mechanism for marking and protecting ownership, signing commitment, designating identity, representing authority, and authenticating documents. In parallel to their role in the sphere of practice, seals have also served as a metaphoric focus. Mesopotamian and biblical texts, Platonic and Aristotelian treatises, patristic and early medieval commentaries, all incorporate sealing imagery as a conceptual tool.3 Such historical longevity does not necessarily imply congruence of the cultural and modal significance of the seals themselves. Yet historian-sigillographers of all hues have assumed continuity of seal usage between very different societies as a category of historical explanation, thereby promoting interpretation of the seal as a single historical, and thus a-historical, object.4 1 I transpose here C. Stephen Yaeger’s felicitous expression in The Envy of Angels. Cathedral Schools and Social Ideas in Europe (Philadelphia, 1994), p. 14. 2 Brian Stock, The Implications of Literacy. Written Language and Models of Interpretation in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries (Princeton, 1983); Michael T. Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record: England, 1066–1307, 2nd ed. (Cambridge, 1993); Armando Petrucci, Writers and Readers in Medieval Itay, trans. Charles M. Radding (Yale, 1995); John Van Engen, “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture in the Eleventh and the Twelfth Centuries,” Dialektik und Rhetoric im früheren und hohen Mittelalter, ed. Johannes Fried (Munich, 1997), pp. 97–132; Jean-Claude Schmitt, Le corps des images: Essais sur la culture visuelle au Moyen Age (Paris, 2002). 3 See for instance the stimulating essay by Elena Cassin, “Le sceau, un fait de civilisation dans la Mésopotamie ancienne,” Annales E.S.C. 15 (1960), pp. 742–751. 4 The seal’s world history, from its beginning in 3000 bce Mesopotamia to the modern period, is given in Erich Kittel, Siegel (Braunschweig, 1970); in his wide-ranging

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In addressing the new appearance of seals on charters issued in the name of French non-royal elites between 1000 and 1200, my earlier work grounds this diffusion laterally, within the very circumstances of its occurrence, rather than approaching it vertically, as an event somehow predicated or determined by historical continuity.5 As I analyzed the diffusion of seals along the axes of regionalism, politics, and gender, I have come to rethink four previous assumptions that have long, almost axiomatically, dominated the field of medieval sigillography, or sphragistics, that is, the study of seals,6 and have in my view obscured the actual historical significance of medieval seals, relegating them to the world of antiquarianism and connoisseurship. The first assumption is that the seal’s function, between the eleventh and fifteenth centuries, was to authenticate documents. This notion, which was first articulated at the end of the twelfth century and received its prescriptive formulation in the thirteenth, cannot account for the early pattern of non-royal seal usage. In fact, when late twelfth-century canon lawyers began to reflect on documentary validation, they assigned the power of authentication only to the sigillum authenticum, the authentic seal. The meaning of authentic here does not derive so much from a concern about counterfeits but from the desire to establish the capacity for authentic seals to confer full validity on documents devoid of witnesses. However, if from its very inception the concept of the authentic seal involved a precise understanding of the seal’s effect, this effect was specifically understood to emanate and influential essay, Robert-Henri Bautier argues that seals and sealing practices spread from the Ancient Near East to the medieval West. “Le cheminement de la bulle et du sceau des origines mésopotamiennes au XIIe siècle occidental,” Revue française d’héraldique et de sigillographie 54–59 (1984–1989), pp. 41–84, reprinted in Chartes, sceaux, et chancelleries. Etudes de diplomatique et de sigillographie médiévales, 2 vols (Paris: Ecole des chartes, 1990), vol, 1, pp. 123–166. An overview of the main historiographical trends in sigillographic studies is given in Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique: Sceau et ressemblance en France préscolastique (1000–1200),” Etudes d’histoire de l’art offertes à Jacques Thirion. Des premiers temps chrétien au XXe siècle, ed. Alain Erlande-Brandenburg et Jean-Michel Leniaud (Paris, 2001), pp. 39–50, at pp. 40–42, and also here throughout chapters 5, 6, 7. 5 B. Bedos-Rezak, Form and Order in Medieval France: Studies in Social and Quantitative Sigillography (London, 1993). 6 The best general treatises on medieval seals include Wilhelm Ewald, Siegelkunde (repr. Munich, 1969); Michel Pastoureau, Les sceaux (Turnhout, 1981); Paul D.A. Harvey and Andrew McGuiness, A Guide to British Medieval Seals (London, 1996); Andrea Stieldorf, Siegelkunde (Hannover, 2004); Vocabulaire international de la sigillographie (Rome 1990).

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from the public authority of popes and rulers. Thus the authenticating power of seals was conditional on the status, conceived as public, of their owners. By the late thirteenth century, when jurists attempted to provide the authentic seal with a broader sociopolitical conception, they insisted that for a seal to function as an authenticating device it must be well known. Even when finally producing such imprecise and relative definitions, jurists did not conceal the fact that viewpoints in the matter of seal validation differed widely; they recognized that the meanings and agency of seals depended on local custom.7 In short, medieval legal discussions of seals, not to mention actual sealing practices, far from displaying consensus about the seal as a validating device, testify to the difficulty legal scholars had in articulating the values and beliefs implied both by the authenticating and by the sealing processes. The question for these scholars was the very nature of the authority underlying the seal’s efficacy, since non-royal seals did not base their owners’ authority on royal grant and affiliation, nor did seals invoke the political hierarchy as party to the act they witnessed. A second hypothesis holds that seals spread because of the concurrent revival, in the twelfth century, of trade and urbanization, the growth of bureaucracies, the reintroduction of Roman Law, and the spread of literacy. Enabling conditions should not be mistaken for explanations, nor do the circumstances lend themselves readily to a chronology indicating the precedence of one phenomenon over the others. There had been a moderate continuum of unsealed charters given in the name of lay authors since early medieval times, but only when they came to be sealed did such texts lead to that generalized and

7 “A charter’s full credibility depends upon an authentic seal, that is, a seal which is well known and famous.” The medieval concept of seal authenticity and concern for documentary validation are studied in A. Dumas, “Etude sur le classement des formes des actes,” Le Moyen Age 43 (1934), pp. 146–66; Mariano Welber, Sigillografia: II sigillo nella diplomatica, nel diritto, nella storia, nell’arte, Vol. 3: / sigilli nella storia del diritto medievale italiano (Milan, 1934), pp. 181–228; B. Bedos-Rezak, “In Search of a Semiotic Paradigm. The Matter of Sealing in Medieval Thought and Praxis (1050–1400),” in Good Impressions. Image and Authority in Medieval Seals, ed. John Cherry and James Robinson, (London, 2008; British Museum, Occasional Paper series), pp. 1–7, at pp. 3–4; Bedos-Rezak, “The Efficacy of Signs and the Matter of Authenticity in Canon Law,” forthcoming in Zwischen Pragmatik und Performanz. Dimensionen mittelalterlicher Schriftkultur, ed. Christoph Dartmann, Thomas Scharff, and Christoph Weber (Turnhout, 2010); see also studies quoted in chapter 6 below pp. 114, 131, and at notes 11 and 49. See chapter 7 below, for further analysis of the legal discourse on seals, and at notes 103, 106 for the sigillum authenticum.

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irreversible social dependence on the written word that has continued up to the present day. Thus it seems that seals furthered rather than resulted from literate modes. This suggests that seals played a unique role in fostering, to borrow M.T. Clanchy’s expression, medieval trust in writing. Basing his argument on English records (1066–1307), Clanchy gives the most satisfactory account to date of the seal’s ability both to encompass and to translate the meanings of the symbolic objects and gestures that had previously validated written deeds, or indeed had entirely substituted for them.8 This scenario elegantly situates the seal as a bridge between the literate and the non-literate, deftly bypassing a polarized historiography that had either associated seals with the growth of literacy or labeled them a technique for illiterates. However, these theories did not adequately confront the fact that there is no systematic or even necessary relationship between seals and the growth of literacy. Charlemagne (d. 814), for example, reinforced the dependence of his administration on the written word by turning to a system of notaries to impart authority to non-royal documents even though his own chancery was sealing the royal diplomas.9 Then, too, areas of Southern Europe that had retained a higher rate of documentary practice throughout the early Middle Ages also used the notariate, adopting sealed charters comparatively late.10 Thus there clearly were successful medieval literate practices independent of sealing, and the adoption of seals as preferred signs in Northern Europe from ca. 1050 evolved in specific cultural circumstances. A third presumption maintains that seals were icons of power. Interpretations of seals as evidence both for and of social and political processes assume a causal relation between the function and meaning of seals and the status and authority of their owners. I have reconsidered this putative causal relationship in the light of the fact that there is no extant evidence of literate intercourse between lay individuals for the

8

Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record, pp. 308–317. See chapter 6 at note 54 a discussion of Carolingian literacy. On the Carolingian notariate, see R.-H. Bautier, “L’authentification des actes privés dans la France médiévale: Notariat public et juridiction gracieuse,” in Notariado publico y documento privado, de los origines al siglo XIV: Actas del VII Congreso intemacional de diplomatica, Valencia, 1986, 2 vols. (Valencia, 1989), vol. 2, pp. 707–709, reprinted in Chartes, sceaux et chancelleries, vol. 1, pp. 275–277. 10 Bautier, “L’authentification des actes privés,” pp. 713–736, and pp. 281–304 in Chartes, sceaux et chancelleries. 9

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purpose of transacting land in eleventh and twelfth-century France.11 Such operations of lay society not involving churchmen appear to have been accomplished primarily by means of oral and gestural modes. In this period, as before, churchmen held a scribal monopoly and were responsible for both the production and the conservation of charters. The ecclesiastically scripted but lay-sealed charter thus indicates secular participation in and acculturation to documentary modes, which were fostered as much by the preexisting churchmen’s scribal and scriptural culture as by sealing. The new category of sealed charters must therefore be analyzed within the contextual framework of their originating scriptoria. The sealed charter, heretofore interpreted solely as an act of individual or familial will, must now be reconsidered as a text and artifact articulating cultural and ideological models ambient in specific scriptoria. A fourth prejudice, indeed a paramount force that has focused seal scholarship on artistic considerations and legal functionality, and has, more generally, shaped traditional sigillography as an antiquarian discipline, is its heuristics, based on casts. Archival collections usually consist of casts made from molds directly taken from single originals, the best impression of a given seal type. Seal catalogs typically describe such casts, thus discounting information inherent in original seal impressions and subsuming such variants into a single archetype. The use of casts as standard objects of study tends to transform the seal into a fixed type, undermining its most fundamental signifying and operative principle, reiteration, by which medieval seals produced identity through identical devices. Aftercasting denatures seals by altering their locus (from documents) and their status (as signs), abstractly recasting them as separate objects of knowledge, removed from their original cultural sphere of discourse and practice.12 Restoring seals to their historicity, as agents within the culture that produced and used them, extends our understanding of the instrumentality of seals well beyond their long-recognized documentary function. A semiotic approach to seals enables them to be reexamined as signs and symbols, and redirects the analysis toward their modes

11

For an analysis of documentary practices in this period, see chapter 6 below. B. Bedos-Rezak, “Le sceau médiéval et son enjeu dans la diplomatique urbaine en France,” in La diplomatique urbaine en Europe au Moyen Age. Actes du Congrès de la Commission internationale de diplomatique, ed. Walter Prevenier and Thérèse de Hemptinne (Louvain-Apeldoorn, 2000), pp. 23–44, at p. 35. 12

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and areas of signification (rhetoric, sign theory, authority, personification, identity), toward the assumptions encoded by seals about the nature of their operation, and toward the effect of seals in and on the society that manipulated them. It is noteworthy that medieval authors themselves explicitly defined seals as signs. This might earlier have suggested a semiotically informed study of them to historian-sigillographers, yet it was not the sigillographic literature that first proposed a semiotic analysis of seals.13 Rather, broader works on sign theory and anthropology have helped bring to my attention both the nature and implications of seals as semiotic agents and processes and the extreme sensitivity to semioticity during the period in which seal usage spread. Of particular relevance for the conceptualization of such an approach is semiotic anthropology. Evaluating Sign Theories “Semiotic Anthropology,” an expression coined by Milton Singer at the University of Chicago in the mid-1970s,14 arose from a philosophical

13 A recent impulse has directed the field of diplomatics toward the sphere of semiotics, wherein documents are analyzed from the viewpoint of their discursive, as well as their graphic and material forms. Peter Rück, “Der Urkunde als Kunstwerk,” in Kaiserin Theophanu. Begegnung de Ostens und Westens um die Wende des ersten Jahrtausends, ed. Anton von Euw and Petern Schreiner, vol. II (Cologne, 1991), pp. 311–333: in this essay, Rück considers medieval documents well beyond the tenth century and exposes his methodology, which calls for a full consideration of writing as shapes, of the design of the page, and of such symbolic signs as chrisms and monograms; see also a further presentation of his method in P. Rück, “Beiträge zur diplomatischen Semiotik,” in Graphische Symbole in mittelalterlichen Urkunden, ed. Peter Rück (Sigmaringen, 1996), pp. 13–47, and Hermann Jung, “Zeichen und Symbol. Bestandsaufnahme und interdisziplinäre Perspektiven,” in Graphische Symbole, pp. 49–66. Seals, however, have not been included in these remarkable analytical developments. I began to explore the relevance of semiotics for the analysis of seals in two essays: B. Bedos-Rezak, “Medieval Identity. A Sign and a Concept,” American Historical Review 105 (2000), pp. 1489–1533 and BedosRezak, “Une image ontologique.” A recent discussion of ancient seals parallels my own interpretation of medieval seals: Verity Platt, “Making an Impression: Replication and the Ontology of the Graeco-Roman Seal Stone,” Art History 29 (2006), pp. 233–257. 14 Richard J. Parmentier, trained at Chicago by Michael Silverstein, and himself a leading practitioner and eloquent theoretician of semiotic anthropology, has recently presented a remarkably thorough and comprehensive analysis of this discipline in “The Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” Semiotica 116/1(1997), pp. 1–115 (see p. 14 for the appearance of the term ‘semiotic anthropology’). Organized in four parts, each abundantly provided with a critical review of the relevant bibliography, Parmentier traces, in part one, the itinerary of semiotic anthropology from Kant through Wilhelm von Humboldt and Emile Durkheim to Levi-Strauss and his critic, Clifford Geertz.

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analysis of language and cognition, and became a methodological program actively pursued and taught there by Michael Silverstein. Singer envisioned semiotic anthropology as offering a theory of means by which and ways in which signs were related to their meaning, to the objects designated, and to the culture of the sign users. His approach challenged Ferdinand de Saussure’s (1857–1913) abstract semiology and built upon Charles Sanders Peirce’s (1839–1914) contextual semiotics. Saussure produced a linguistic theory that removed language from its social embededness. Though his goal was the establishment of a historical linguistics he in fact situated linguistic value as if it were independent of semantic meaning and of the context of utterance. He posited that the sign entertained a dyadic relationship between a signifier and a signified. This relationship was pre-established by a fixed code which, based on an equal exchange between unequivocally corresponding sign and referent, is shared by producer and interpreter. In the terms of Saussurean semiology meaning, intentional and definite, may be retrieved merely by the operation of decodification, since it passes unmodified between sender and receiver, bracketing both the external world and the interpretive self. Such a concurrence of sign and meaning carries three implications. One is the unavoidable conclusion that the historical agency underlying meaning is of little interest. The second is the conception of culture as a hermetically sealed entity ordered by a prescriptive set of codes. The third is the perception of the human subject as having a perfect coincidence between itself and its own consciousness.15 Saussurean linguistics shaped the social

In part 2, Parmentier presents applications of and reactions to semiotic methods in cultural analysis. Part 3 reviews “semiotic approaches to meaning in material culture,” and proposes outlines of a semiotic perspective that would contribute to an anthropological theory of material objects. Part 4 assesses critically attempts at a semiotic typology of cultures by considering the work of three prominent semiotic typologists (Ernst Cassirer, Yuri Lotman, and Jean Baudrillard), and by testing such typology with the case of the European twelfth century. As such, Parmentier’s essay holds a special interest for medievalists. Semiotic anthropology is also referred as pragmatic anthropology, see Robert Preucel, Archaeological Semiotics (Blackwell, 2006), where is given an excellent account of work done in that field since the 1970s, pp. 66–90. On Preucel’s use of Peircean semiotics, see R. Parmentier, “Troubles with Trichotomies: Reflections on the Utility of Peirce’s sign Trichotomies for Social Analysis,” Semiotica 177 (2009), pp. 139–155, at pp. 151–153. 15 Saussure’s linguistics have been denounced as “semiotics of identification or of equal exchange” by Augusto Ponzio, Signs, Dialogues and Ideology (Amsterdam, 1993), pp. xii–xiii, 11–18.

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sciences through the monumental influence of Claude Levi-Strauss’ structuralism. Structuralism considers cultural manifestations (such as speech, religion, law, cooking, kinship alliance) to be codes of communication formed by articulated signs, the meanings of which derive not from their ties to external referents but from their positional values within a systemic code. The natural and social worlds at once provide and function as a limitless inventory of possible signifiers, although these are held to signify only as parts within underlying generative pre-coded systems (the structures).16 Peirce, on the other hand, considered that only certain types of signs, which he termed symbols, were defined by their arbitrariness. Thus, whereas symbolism was one possible mode of signification, characterized by convention, additional signifying modes include indexicality (common context), whereby signs must be in a causal relation of spatiotemporal contiguity with their objects, and iconicity (common quality), whereby the sign and its object must somehow resemble each other.17 His appreciation of the multimodality of signifying processes enabled Peirce’s ingenious accomplishment, the reconciliation of natural signs and their epistemological role in the acquisition of knowledge with conventional symbols and their function in the structure of communication. Pierce achieved this unification by progressively diminishing the distinction between sign and object. Whatever the state of an object’s being, whether abstract or actual, that object, Peirce

For a clear and concise criticism of Saussurean linguistics, with additional bibliography see R. Parmentier, Signs In Society. Studies in Semiotic Anthropology (Bloomington, 1994), pp. xiii–xv. In Signs and Society, pp. xiii–xv, and “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” pp. 7–15, Parmentier deftly compares Saussure’s semiology with Peirce’s semiotics. 16 Parmentier, “The Pragmatics of Semiotic Culture,” pp. 8–12, 31. See also recent and synthetic reviews of Saussure’s legacy and Levi-Strauss’ anthropology in Preucel, Archaeological Semiotics, pp. 21–43; Robert Layton, “Structuralism and Semiotics,” in Handbook of Material Culture, ed. Christopher Tiley, W. Keane, Susanne Küchler, Mike Rowlands, Patricia Spyer (London, 2006), pp. 29–42, at pp. 33, 35, 37; Bjørnar Olsen, “Scenes from a Troubled Engagement, Post-Structuralism and Material Culture Studies,” in Handbook of Material Culture, pp. 85–103, at pp. 86, 88. 17 Numerous studies have been devoted to Peirce’s semiotics. I rely here upon Parmentier’s two first chapters in his Signs in Society, which were particularly illuminating: “Peirce Divested for Nonintimates,” (pp. 3–22), and “Peirce’s Concept of Semiotic Mediation” (pp. 23–44). E. Valentine Daniel offers a thoughtful discussion of Perceian sign theory in his Fluid Signs. Being a Person in the Tamil Way (Berkeley, 1984), pp. 12–40. A lucid presentation of Perceian’s semiotics is Preucel in his Archaeological Semiotics, pp. 44–66, and see above at note 14 for a reference to Parmentier’s assessment of Preucel’s use of Perceian semiotics.

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argued, enters reality as a sign, and this analysis includes the human self. Thus, knowledge of the objective world, and of ideas, occurs via representations by signs: human cognition is mediated through signs and self-consciousness and, to the extent that it is constituted through social interaction, is a collective property. For mediation to be effective, the sign must be connected to its object in such a way that the sign’s identifying properties are determined by the object. In Peirceian semiotics, there is a necessary consonance between representation and reality: the sign, termed “representamen,” is a mediate realization of its object, a realization rendered possible by the fact that the object determines the character of its sign. Significantly, such realism can be traced back to John Duns Scot (1265–1308) and Peirce himself recognized his debt to the medieval philosopher by labeling himself “a scotistic realist.”18 However, for signification to occur, more is needed than an expression of the object in the sign. Peirce posited that the determining influence of the object on the sign produced a mental or behavioral effect in some interpreter or interpreting representation. This interpretation constitutes the sign’s meaning. Whereas the sign and the object are in a direct relationship of mutual determination and representation, meaning is a subsequent representation, also determined by the same object but by the mediating role of the sign or “representamen.”19 Meaning is thus a locus of interpretation and, as such, contextualizes the sign (“representamen”). Signification, therefore, occurs along two axes. On the one hand, there is determination, flowing from the object

18 Cited in James I. Wimsatt, “John Duns Scotus, Charles Sanders Peirce, and Chaucer’s Portrayal of the Canterbury Pilgrims,” Speculum (1996), pp. 633–645, at p. 634. On Peirce’s understanding of Duns Scot’s realism, see the comprehensive study by John F. Boler, Charles Peirce and Scholastic Realism (Seattle, 1963). Also suggestive are Vincent J. Potter, Charles S. Peirce. On Norms and Ideals 2nd ed. (New York, 1997), p. 82; Jeffrey R. Dileo, “Peirce’s Haecceitism,” Transactions 27 (1991), pp. 79–109; Claudine Engelin-Tierceli, “Vagueness and the Unity of C.S. Peirce’s Realism,” Transactions 28 (1992), pp. 51–82; Ponzio, Signs, Dialogue, and Ideology, pp. 70–82; Susan Petrilli and Augusto Ponzio, “Peirce and Medieval Semiotics,” in Peirce’s Doctrine of Signs: Theory, Applications, and Connections, ed. Vincent M. Colapietro, Thomas M. Olshewsky (Berlin and New York, 1996), pp. 351–364. The philosophy of Duns Scotus has been the object of a recent study by Antonie Vos, The Philosophy of John Duns Scotus (Edinburgh, 2006). The case for a coincidence between Augustine and Peirce’s sign theories has been made by Robert A. Markus, “St. Augustine on Signs,” Phronesis 2 (1957), pp. 60–83, reprinted in Sacred and Secular. Studies on Augustine and Latin Christianity (Aldershot, 1994), XIV. 19 Parmentier, “Peirce’s Concept of Semiotic Foundation,” Signs and Society, p. 25.

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to both the sign and its meaning. On the other, there is interpretation, which is historically situated and, as a mediate representation of its object, produces in turn a further meaning for which it serves as a sign. Semiosis is thus determined by objects, is contingent upon the context of its occurrence, and is part of an infinite process, as further determinations and representations accumulate and shift the role of each element in the triadic relationsip of sign, referent, and meaning.20 Each of the three elements may pertain equally to such diverse classes of phenomena as material objects, human actions, or natural laws.21 While semiosis is a limitless process of interpretation, representation remains guided by determination, for “the object of a sign must resist in some measure any tendency it may have to be as the thinker thinks it is.”22 This real relation between sign, object, and meaning is itself predicated on Peirce’s meta-physical notion that the signs used to represent mental and external realities also share substantial identity with these realities, and on his ontological view that all knowledge at a given historical moment must to some degree relate to something with which the knower is already acquainted. Peirce thus produced a relationship of dialogic adequacy between signs and objects, between meaning and experience, and between thought and reality.23 This insight is not popular with social scientists, most of whom dismiss it as a vestigial Western attachment to the Renaissance theory of signatures,24 but it is precisely what recommended Peirceian semiotics 20 Parmentier, “Peirce’s Concept of Semiotic Foundation,” Signs and Society, pp. 25–27. 21 Parmentier, “Peirce’s Concept of Semiotic Foundation,” Signs and Society, p. 25. 22 Peirce manuscript 499 in the collection of the Houghton Library, the rare book and manuscript library at Harvard University, quoted in Parmentier, Signs in Society, p. 26. 23 Discussion of the relationship between sign, object, and thinking subject may be found in Umberto Eco, Semiotics and the Philosophy of Language (Bloomington, 1986), p. 45; Ponzio, Signs, Dialogues, and Ideology, pp. 3, 12, 39, 42–44; James Hoopes, “Objectivity and Relativism Affirmed: Historical Knowledge and the Philosophy of Charles S. Peirce,” American Historical Review 98 (1993), pp. 1545–1555, at p. 1548. 24 In Renaissance hermeneutics, to search for meaning is to identify resemblance. In this approach, the world offers itself to human cognition through signs (signatures) indicating invisible analogies that must be deciphered. On the Renaissance theory of signs, see Michel Foucault, The Order of Things: An Archeology of the Human Sciences (New York, 1973), pp. 17–45; Timothy Reiss, The Discourse of Modernism (Ithaca, NY, 1982), p. 32. Parmentier, “Pragmatic Semiotics of Cultures,” pp. 31–32, reports that contemporary semiotic approaches to cultural analysis are attacked as “a Western holdover from the Renaissance belief in correspondences or signatures,” and dismisses

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to semiotic anthropologists, and what should make such semiotics valuable to historians, for it locates meaning within history by suggesting that it is only in social practice that the sign is used and its sense determined: semiosis as enacted social practice. Meaning, therefore, is not disembodied but acts and is enacted within sign systems (linguistic and nonlinguistic alike), which, embedded in context-specific purposive behavior, are at once socially grounded and socially creative. Contextual parameters are concrete realities—time, space, matter—, and sign operations all require physically manifested sign vehicles, experienceable over time. Complementary to this concrete contextualization is the tracking of a given culture’s meta-semiotic understanding through theoretical discourses, ideological assumptions, and social actions. The material aspect of semiosis does not deprive contextually grounded signs of meta-level correlates regulating a further range of acceptable meanings. Thus semiosis, as a multidimensional process sensitive alike to the formal properties of signs, the material circumstances of context, and the influence of meta-semiotic anchors, opens up ways to study social action seen both as emergent in real time and projected from meta-semiotic representation.25 A Mutually Challenging Encounter: Semiotic Anthropology and the Middle Ages The European Middle Ages, the twelfth century in particular, have recently been examined through the lenses of semiotic anthropology by Richard Parmentier, a distinguished practitioner of this methodology.26

such attacks as reductionist logics that seek to locate the “mechanisms of semiosis in the hard-wiring of the brain or in the universal constraints of communicative competence.” 25 Good discussions of the methodological orientation provided by Peirce’s semiotics, together with an analytical review of their applicability to the humanities and to the social sciences, are offered by Parmentier, Signs in Society, esp. pp. xiii–xvii and 125–128; Parmentier, “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” pp. 7–8, 15–17. 26 See above at note 14 on the scope and significance of Parmentier’s work in general and for the study of the Middle Ages. A special issue of Semiotica was devoted to medieval semiotics, Semiotica Mediaevalia, ed. Jonathan Evans, Semiotica 63–1/2 (1987), pp. 1–239: semiotic approaches to the study of medieval semiotics have mostly focused on poetics, linguistics, literature, grammar, rhetoric, and philosophy. For aspects of twelfth-century medieval sign theory that compare, but cannot be reduced, to the tenets of semiotic anthropology, see B. Bedos-Rezak, “ ‘Semiotic

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Parmentier considers the twelfth century to have been primarily governed by Platonic Realism, which affirmed the reality and transcendent referentiality of abstract ideas or universals.27 However, Parmentier also comments on the diversity of twelfth-century symbolic discourses, though without either specifically identifying such discourses, or analyzing the conflicts that erupted over the reality of universals, about the Christic presence in the eucharist, over the nature of the persons in the triune God, and over the expression of authorial presence in script. Based on his perception that twelfth-century semiosis had multiple, often contrasting, operative mechanisms, Parmentier draws the general conclusion that specific semiotic structural elements, such as Realism, do not necessarily correspond to particular types of societies but are widespread phenomena acting cross-culturally. For instance, since universals are conceived as templates of the spatiotemporal realm, social regimentation and political permanence can be ascribed to any society that proclaims the transcendent immutability of universals.28 Realism, in this conclusion, has been essentialized, that is, assumed to have systematic effects independent of context. Parmentier’s conclusion involves a radical epistemological shift, as several aspects of semiosis are decontextualized and universalized, while the explanatory power of semiotic anthropology is directed away from categories of cultural order and toward types of cross-cultural experience. Such an approach raises several problems. First, it denies a particular semiotic theory, in this case Realism, its own power as sign and as engine rather than as mere determinant of semiosis. Second, although synchronic but conflicting semiotic systems are recognized, those medieval sign operations not accounted for by contemporaneous theoretical discourses are subordinated, identified by reference to anachronistic modern interpretive norms, or conceived as having

Anthropology.’ The Twelfth Century Experiment,” European Transformations 950–1200, eds., Thomas F.X. Noble and John Van Engen (Notre Dame, Forthcoming). 27 Parmentier, “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” pp. 78–89. Parmentier’s discussion of the Middle Ages aims in part at testing a novel offshoot of semiotic anthropology—the construction of an evolutionary and comparative typology of cultures diachronically based on fundamental semiotic processes, see note 14 above and his “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” pp. 63–65, 78–79. Also see chapter 6 here at n. 33 for further discussion of the term realism in medieval philosophy. 28 Parmentier, “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” p. 86; Parmentier reaches this conclusion in an effort to dismiss the notion that any culture can be characterized by coherent semiotic criteria.

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been so pervasive and axiomatic as not to have been recorded in texts. Third, medieval semiotic processes themselves are translated directly into analytical tools of modern research, when, in fact, such processes were constitutive of twelfth-century culture and operated in a vastly different interpretive context than the tools of current social studies. Consequently, actual medieval semiotic processes, though initially contextually anchored and/or meta-semiotically correlated, become, once reinscribed (and reified) within modern epistemologies, nonfunctional, since the ways in which they originally enabled specific and new signifying forms, new meanings, new forms of meaning, and new chains of interpretations remain unretrieved. When semiotic practices are seen simply as presupposed habits, objective discourses, or analytical tools, the interpretive creativity of signs within historical societies cannot become a proper subject of historical inquiry. Parmentier’s comprehensive review of semiotically informed studies on the twelfth century reports interactions between different media (images/texts, heraldic emblems/agnatic discourse), different discourses (monastic/ prescholastic), and different esthetics (romanesque/gothic). All of these media, discourses, and esthetics, however, are analyzed only from the viewpoint of their engagement with explicit medieval semiotic systems. Such analyses tend to impute a meta-semiotic, superstructural dimension to those medieval systems, whereby they are conceived to be external to the very reality they constitute. The actual semiotic nature of the heraldic emblem or the gothic cathedral, both new forms in the twelfth century, their signifying modes and locations within processual chains of interpretation, and their force in producing specific cognitive and external realities remain unaddressed in this treatment. Semiotics of this sort, from the viewpoint of the historian, merely serves to reinforce the well-known chronicle of innovations. Thus charting the zones left in shadow as the spotlight of semiotic anthropology sweeps across the field of medieval history reveals the paradox at the very heart of semiotic anthropology. On the one hand, Peirce insists on the necessity of context for semiosis to take shape and to make sense, and semiotic anthropologists advocate careful examination of the particular sociohistorical setting within which signs, as contextually informed material instances, operate. On the other hand, anthropologists have abstracted Peirce’s sign theory into an analytical tool held to be applicable to any sign system, on the explicit assumption that “[his] semiotic writings clarify a series of analytical distinctions in sign operations and structure that can be used as a starting

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point for cultural analysis. But just as the calculus, the indispensable mathematical tool for modern scientific research, makes no claims in itself about the laws which governs the scientific universe, so Peirce’s semiotic trichotomies enable the student of cultural codes to ‘calculate’ many dimensions of “signs in society.”29 In the hands of social scientists, the Peircean sign theory has often become a certitude, held to be applicable to all cultures, to elicit a given culture’s preference for a particular Peircean mode of signification.30 Peirce’s taxonomic systems have undoubtedly generated a vast array of sign types,31 but systematic recourse to his classification limits historical contingency. Even in the presence of an indigenous theory of signs, anthropologists conclude that such a theory may have no bearing on notions of signification and cultural categories within that specific environment.32 It is somewhat inconsistent for semiotic anthropology to claim contextualization for semiosis even while essentializing its working definition of the sign. Implicit in the projection of Peirceian sign theory onto all times and cultures is a universalization, a hard-wiring, of signification. Do signs signify independently? Is semiotics a new form of historical determinism, on a par with, say, materialism? Such theoretical essentialism is especially problematic for medievalists who, at least in some cases, feel prompted by Peirce’s own knowledge of and reliance on medieval sign theory to make medieval systems “fit” Perceian semiotic trichotomies.33 In my view, the systematic application of Peirce’s theory runs contrary

29

Parmentier, Signs in Society, p. xiv. This statement runs in fact against Peirce’s own belief that there is a necessary equation between representation (the rules and symbols of calculus) and reality. 30 Parmentier, “The Pragmatic Semiotic of Culture,” pp. 64–65, where are listed 15 semiotic criteria used by various cultural analysts bent on an evolutionary classification of cultures, or epochs, according to prevalent semiotic process. Parmentier is engaged in a critical examination of such typologization. 31 Peirce’s distinction among signs is lucidly presented in Parmentier, “Peirce Divested for Nonintimates,” in Signs in Society, pp. 16–19; see also, Daniel, Fluid Signs, pp. 12–40, pp. 287–294. 32 Daniel, Fluid Signs, pp. 231–232, and citing other studies reaching similar conclusions. Daniel’s study, however, is an exemplary analysis of Tamil culture, focusing on the daily phenomena in Tamil villagers’ life so as to understanding the prevalent system of ranked cultural units, or substances, of which the caste system is but one of many manifestations. 33 See parallels drawn between Peirce’s semiotics and medieval logic in Boler, Charles Peirce and Scholastic Realism; Petrilli and Ponzio, “Peirce and Medieval Semiotics,” pp. 351–64; Ponzio, Signs, Dialogue, and Ideology, pp. 70–82. As already mentioned (above, note 18), arguing for the coincidence between Augustine and Peirce’s sign theories is Markus, “St. Augustine on Signs,” pp. 60–83.

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to his own notion of the contingency of signification on context, and to his own implication that all knowledge is relative; for, while knowledge is tested by objective reality (and thus is not merely subjective), reality itself remains dependent on thought (that is, on signs and representation, in other words, on culture) in order to acquire knowable meanings and qualities. Peirce’s semiotics ought to inspire historians with a sense of the historicity of both sign theory and sign agency, and of their dialogic ability to encode and articulate specific ontological and metaphysical views. The tendency of semiotic anthropology to universalize Peirceian sign theory only partially undermines the utility of its insights for historians. Semiotic anthropology is particularly valuable in exploring material objects as signs because it eschews the systematic application of a logocentric model of meaning, and thus does not reduce culture to the single model of a linguistic code.34 It calls for the study of material culture beyond technical reductionism or linguistic symbolism and for an understanding of material culture’s functions beyond the instrumental or the practical, providing, among other things, a useful agenda for research by which to explore the nature of the signifying material, the agents and purposes of its interpretation, and the status of the relationship between this material and surrounding cultural traditions, social organizations, and cosmological powers.35 In being part of and exposed to the traffic of signs, cultures are seen less as coherent than as dynamic systems in which both the empirical subject and the empirical object are full participants. Having re-established the engagement of social and material relations, semiotic anthropology has made way for the ‘return’ of the object in social theory at the turn of the third millennium. New analytical approaches are now

34 Nor does semiotic anthropology rely upon the post-structuralist textual analogy. The analogy of the text considers that a sign cannot refer to itself. It always refers to something else, which is constituted through that difference. Meaning is thus construed by the play of difference, and the materiality of signs can only be instrumental. In this sense, the world has always been written, and there is no reality outside the play of difference; see a particularly lucid, and critical, account of post-structuralism in Olsen, “Scenes from a Troubled Engagement,” in Handbook of Material Culture, pp. 85–103. 35 Parmentier, “Pragmatic Semiotics of Culture,” pp. 43–63; the agenda of questions is set up on 51.

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considering the performative capacity of things to weave some of the fabric of social reality.36 Viewed in this way, semiotic anthropology is a modern science, one which provides contemporary analysts who chose to use it with a specific epistemology for the exploration of human experience. This epistemology, however, though sensitive to the historical contingency of signification and meaning, paradoxically essentializes the Peirceian theory of signs. As a critic of the paradox at work in semiotic anthropology, I have resisted the adoption of every axiom of semiotic anthropology but embrace much of its theoretical vocabulary and its programmatic framework, which, as already stated, invites a focus on signs in society and on the relationships between persons and things.37

36 The pioneering studies which directed attention to the concrete historicity of social objects were gathered by Arjun Appudarai in his Social Life of Things (Cambridge, 1986); the volume contains an essay of interest to medievalists by Patrick Geary, “Sacred Commodities: The Circulation of Medieval Relics,” pp. 169–194. Two issues (5 and 6) of volume 19 (2002) of Theory, Culture & Society have been devoted to “The Status of the Object. Performances, Mediations, and Technique,” introduction by Dick Pels, Kevin Hetherington and Frédéric Vanderberghe, pp. 1–21. Webb Keane, “Subjects and Objects,” in Handbook of Material Culture, pp. 197–202. See a compelling analysis of the “theoretical pluralism” which characterizes the study of materials forms and artefacts in their relation to society, C. Tiley, “Theoretical Perspectives,” in Handbook of Material Culture, pp. 7–11. A strong, though controversial, argument that the power of artefacts resides less in their being conveyors of meaning than social agents in and of themselves has been made by Alfred Gell, Art and Agency: An Anthropological Theory (Oxford, 1998). With respect to the seals themselves, archeologists have done significant work on seal matrices, particularly on the patterns of their disposal after they have been discarded, John Cherry, “The Breaking of Seals,” Middelalderlige seglstamper i Norden, ed. Michael Andersen and Göran Tegnér (Roskilde, 2002), pp. 81–96; Michael Andersen, “Bispens sidste hvilested? Middelalderlige bispers seglstamper fundet på kirkegårde,” Hikuin 27 (2000), pp. 137–154, with an English summary at p. 318. Recent studies focusing on the non-diplomatic use of seals include R.-H. Bautier, “Notes sur des usages non diplomatiques du sceau.” Revue française d’héraldique et de sigillographie, 60–61 (1990–1991), pp. 127–139; Jean-François Nieus, “Les remplois de sceaux princiers en Lotharingie au XIIe siècle: Pragmatisme ou propagande dynastique,” Recueil d’articles publiés en hommage à René Laurent, ed. Claude de Moreau de Gerbehaye et André Vanrie, Archives et bibliothèques de Belgique, numéro spécial 79 (Bruxelles, 2006), pp. 47–58; B. Bedos-Rezak, “L’au-delà du soi. Métamorphoses sigillaires en Europe médiévale,” Cahiers de civilisation médiévale 49 (2006), pp. 337–358. 37 On the methodological itinerary that led me to semiotic anthropology, see B. Bedos-Rezak, “Medieval Identity. A Sign and a Concept,” pp. 1511–1521. See a review of my approach in R. Parmentier, “Representing Semiotics in the New Millenium,” Semiotica 142/1–4 (2002), pp. 291–314, at pp. 305–307, and Parmentier, “Trouble Trichotomies,” pp. 150–151.

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A heuristic use of the tenets of semiotic anthropology has been particularly useful in considering the world of post-millennial northern Europe, where new physical signs were empowered to circulate as explicit and authoritative images of their owners.38 With respect to such material media and their relation to representational practices, social subjectivity, and cultural processes, semiotic anthropology also provides a clear conceptualization of the differences between reference, meaning, and agency. Equipped with new analytical possibilities, I have undertaken to probe the mechanisms—material, theoretical, hermeneutical—that facilitated the operations of seals as engines of meaning and of meaningful actions. I have also considered the texture of such meaning, its own agency within medieval society and explored the ways in which sealing practices constructed a living reality, situating persons and constituting actors, stating identity and enabling identification, manipulating subjective identity, mapping power, and transforming a written parchment into an expression of executory will.39

38 There is no denying the heuristic value of Perceian semiotics, as Beatrice Fraenkel’s book on the signature so aptly demonstrates, La signature. Genèse d’un signe (Paris, 1992). 39 The result of this research is available here in the next chapters, and in B. BedosRezak, “Une image ontologique;” Bedos-Rezak, “Du sujet à l’objet. La formulation identitaire et ses enjeux culturels,” Unverwechselbarkeit. Persönliche Identität und dentifikation in der vormodernen Gesellschaft, ed., Peter von Moos, Norm und Struktur, Bd. 23, (Köln, 2004), pp. 63–82; Bedos-Rezak, “L’ Individu, c’est l’autre. Signes d’identité et principes d’altérité au XIIe siècle,” in L’Individu au Moyen Age. Individuation et individualisation avant la modernité, eds., B. Bedos-Rezak and Dominique Iogna-Prat, (Paris, 2005), pp. 43–57, 311–316.

PART II

IMAGO

CHAPTER FOUR

THE KING’S SIGN The power of early medieval kings and the continuity of kingship came to be closely bound up with the very existence, repetitive use, and formulaic manipulation of texts and images, such as they were performed in royal chanceries. Formulae and repetitions may imply cultural gap and loss of meaning. The recurrent production of the king’s image and script, however, rendered tangible and visible the mark of a distinct authority, translating notions of transcendental hierarchy into organizing principles of earthly domination.1 Among early medieval ritual signs of dominance, the sealed diploma stood as an exclusive royal prerogative, offering a threefold expression and representation of sovereign power. It bore the text and image 1

On the general issue of royal ritual, see Bernard Guenée, States and Rulers in Later Medieval Europe (New York, 1985); Herwig Wolfram, “The Shaping of the Early Medieval Kingdom,” Viator 1 (1970), pp. 1–20; Philippe Braunstein, “Livre montage. Percy Ernst Schramm, les signes du pouvoir et la symbolique de l’Etat”, Le Débat 14 (1981), pp. 166–192; Clifford Geertz, “Centers, Kings, and Charisma: Reflections on the Symbolics of Power”, in Local Knowledge: Further Essays in Interpretive Anthropology (New York, 1983), pp. 121–146; Rites of Power: Symbolism, Ritual and Politics since the Middle Ages, ed. Sean Wilentz (Philadelphia, 1985); Louis Marin, Le portrait du roi (Paris, 1981), translated by Martha M. Houle as Portrait of the King (Minneapolis, 1988); Ritual of Royalty. Power and Ceremonial in Traditional Societies, ed. David Cannadine and S. Price (Cambridge, 1987); Culture et idéologie dans la genèse de l’Etat moderne (Rome, 1985); Gerd Althoff, “The Variability of Rituals in the Middle Ages,” in Medieval Concepts of the Past. Ritual, Memory, Historiography, ed. Althoff, Johannes Fried, Patrick J. Geary (Cambridge, 2002), pp. 71–87. The conclusions reached by Philippe Buc in his The Dangers of Rituals (Princeton, 2001) have been considered to be somewhat controversial but this should not obscure the value of the observations he makes about the epistemological problems associated with the social-scientific modeling of medieval culture, at pp. 203–247, 255–261. See Buc’s response to reviews of his book in “The Monster and the Critics: A Ritual Reply,” Early Medieval Europe 15 (2007), pp. 441–452. On the role of seals in the symbology of early medieval royal power, see Hagen Keller, “Zu den Siegeln der Karolinger und den Ottonen: Urkunden als ‘Hoheitszeichen’ in der Kommunikation des Herrschers mit seinen Getreuen,” Frühmittelalteriche Studien 32 (1998), pp. 404–441, and Peter Worm, “From Subscription to Seal: The Growing Importance of Seals as Signs of Authenticity in Early Medieval Royal Charters,” in Strategies of Writing. Studies in Text and Trust in Medieval Europe, ed. Petra Schulte, Marco Mostert, Irene van Renswoude, Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy 13 (Brepols, 2008), pp. 63–83.

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through which the will of the ruler was exerted; it blurred the distinction between the trappings of rulership and its substance; and it set the royal person apart by making his the only personal image operative within the body social and politic. From Merovingian times onward, affixing seals to royal diplomas had become a requisite act of the behavior of the ruler qua ruler. This practice endured throughout the Middle Ages but the significance of the royal sealed diploma, its iconographic and discursive modes, and its production, conservation, and emulation underwent an evolution which, at least through the early thirteenth century is the subject of this chapter. Symbolic in Merovingian times, documentary seal usage became official and instrumental in early Carolingian chanceries, formulaic in the kingdoms of the later Carolingians, the Robertians and the early Capetians, and institutional during the reign of Philip Augustus (1180–1223). I will analyze this evolution from two perspectives: First, the extent to which variations in the production, form, content, and function of royal sealed documents testify to extensions and contractions of the king’s authority, and second the degree to which such variations articulate conceptual and practical engagements with literacy both as a form of communication and as a ritual of government. A Merovingian Icon: The Royal Seal The privileged association between seals and kingship in Western Europe following the disintegration of the Roman Empire is documented by the surviving seal-rings of Childeric, king of the Franks (d. 481), of Alaric II, king of the Visigoths (d. 507); and of Theodoric the Great (d. 526), king of the Ostrogoths.2 The oldest sealed document with a 2 These rings are discussed in Erich Kittel, Siegel (Braunschweig, 1970), pp. 103–09, Martin Henig, “Roman Sealstones,” in 7000 Years of Seals, ed. Dominique Coulon (London, 1997), pp. 88–106, and Genevra Kornbluth, “The seal of Alaric, rex Gothorum,” Early Medieval Europe 16 (2008), pp. 299–332. Private individuals and bishops of the Merovingian period owned seal-rings as well, see Maximin Deloche, Etude historique et archéologique sur les anneaux sigillaires et autres des premiers siècles du Moyen-Age (Paris, 1900); Reine Hadjadj, Bagues mérovingiennes (Gaule du Nord), (Paris, 2007). These rings have come down to us as matrices, and no impression issued from them seems to have survived. This may indicate functions such as letter closure, where the impression was destroyed when the letter was opened. Seal-rings have also been interpreted as having been used by their owners to imprint their signs of approval and participation, that is, their subscription, on documents. However, no such impressions are known, and the few extant early medieval private charters evi-

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surviving wax impression is that of the Merovingian king Thierry III in June 679. The texts of this and of other extant Merovingian diplomas do not note such seals as were applied, in contrast to the treatment of the royal monogram and the chancery’s subscription, both of which are specifically mentioned within the texts of the diplomas.3 This distinction invites inquiry into the origins and utility of Merovingian documentary sealing. The practice cannot be directly traced to Western Roman emperors whose documents were, apparently, not sealed. Provincial Roman officials, however, did affix seals and this administrative practice may have formed the model for sealing as introduced by the Eastern emperors into their chanceries. Byzantium represented stability and continuity in statecraft, and the new Germanic rulers emulated a practice they associated with rulership. To seal was, for the Merovingian kings, to behave as a ruler, literally to inscribe oneself within the imperial tradition. However, though the seal validated the king, it did not yet authenticate his scripts. For the Merovingians, sealing was not a means of documentary validation; rather, the seal was a sign of the king, who uniquely issued documents thus marked.

dence that manuscript subscriptions had replaced the late Roman use of signet-rings by private individuals, Arthur Giry, Manuel de diplomatique (Paris, 1894), p. 631; Walter Goffart, “Charters Earlier than 800 from French Collections,” Speculum 65 (1990), pp. 906–923. Hartmut Atsma and Jean Vezin, “Aspects matériels et graphiques des documents mérovingiens,” in Typologie der Königsurkunden. Acta Colloquii Olomucensis, 1992, ed. Jan Bistrický (Olmütz, 1998), pp. 9–22: The authors mention some exceptional traces of non-royal sealings, which are also discussed in La diplomatique française du Haut Moyen Age, ed. Benoît-Michel Tock, 2 vols., (Turnhout, 2001), vol. 1, p. 29. 3 See a discussion of Merovingian diplomatics in Georges Tessier, Manuel de diplomatique royale (Paris, 1962), pp. 1–38; Maurice Jusselin, “La garde et l’ usage du sceau dans les chancelleries carolingiennes d’après les notes tironiennes,” Mélanges Emile Châtelain (Paris, 1910), pp. 35–41, at p. 35; H. Atsma and J. Vezin, “Aspects matériels et graphiques des documents mérovingiens;” Carl Richard Brühl, Studien zu den merowingischen Königsurkunden (Cologne, Weimar, Vienne, 1998); Theo Kölzer, Tra tarda antichità e Medioevo: l’edizione critica dei diplomi merovingici, inaugurazione del corso biennale, anni academici 1998–2000, Scuola vaticana di paleografa, diplomatica e archivistica (Vatican, 2000). On Merovingian seals in particular: Andrea Stieldorf, “Zu Gestalt und Funktion der Siegel an merowingischen Königsurkunden,” Archiv für Diplomatik 47/48 (2001–2002), pp. 133–166. Thierry III’s seal is described and illustrated in: Martine Dalas, Corpus des sceaux français du Moyen Age. Vol. 2: Les sceaux des rois et de régence (Paris, 1991), no. 5, p. 81.

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The identification of seal usage with royal status continued upon the ascension of the Carolingians.4 Documentary sealing had become a systematic practice of the Merovingian chancery and the new dynasty maintained this tradition, which evoked both continuity and ruling power. Furthermore, the seals of Carolingian kings and emperors were no longer merely icons of wax affixed to the bottom of diplomas. They became the subject of theory, their use governed by specific and significant principles, and their iconography and inscriptions sensitive to politics. These dynamics testify to the administrative and ceremonial roles that seals came to fulfill. The royal seal manifested the power of the king by means of its own power to represent the king. For the first time, during the reign of the very first Carolingian king, Pippin the Short (d. 768), the seal was announced within the text of the diploma by a formula that would become typical: anuli nostri impressione signari jussimus, “we have ordered this to be sealed with the impression of our ring.”5 Indeed most diplomas issued by Carolingian rulers bear both seals and such announcements. Seals were not unique as signs of validation, since the manus propria, the ruler’s monogram, might also be present; but whereas the monogram was at times lacking, seals were systematically applied (Fig. 15). The inscription of the monogram often involved the autograph participation of the monarch announced in the document in the nominative: manu

4 As mayors of the palace, the ancestors of the Carolingians sealed charters issued in their own names, the only magnates to do so; they thus manifested their royal ambitions and self-perception as rulers in their own right: Tessier, Diplomatique royale, pp. 40, 72–73. For a comprehensive study of the Carolingian chancery, see RobertHenry Bautier, “La chancellerie et les actes royaux dans les royaumes carolingiens,” Bibliothèque de L’Ecole des chartes 142 (1984), pp. 6–80. 5 Tessier, Diplomatique royale, p. 90; Bautier, “La chancellerie,” p. 42. On Carolingian diplomatics, see also R.-H. Bautier, “Les actes royaux de l’époque carolingienne,” in Typologie der Königsurkunden, pp. 43–63. In his survey of the scholarship devoted to Carolingian diplomatics, “Towards a Reappraisal of Carolingian Sovereign Charters,” in Charters and the Use of the Written Word in Medieval Society, ed. Karl Heidecker, (Turnhout, 2000), pp. 15–25, Mark Mersiowsky argues convincingly that the influence of beneficiaries and of the royal entourage on rulers’ diplomatic output should be taken into consideration when assessing the royal diploma as a locus of royal will. The author, however, does not discuss the significance of the seal in marking the document’s authority as originating from a royal order.

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propria firmavimus, “we have confirmed with our own hand.”6 The king does not say, however, as he does for the monogram, that he has personally affixed his seal but rather that he ordered it to be affixed: anulo nostro sigillari jussimus. In two surviving royal documents of the second half of the ninth century, seal announcements also include the expressions more regio or more nostro insigniri jussimus;7 diplomatic discourse thus associates documentary sealing with royal custom. In a capitulary (809) of Charlemagne (d. 814), individuals were required to appear at the royal palace jussione dominica cum sigillo, “by a royal order conveyed with a seal.”8 Both spoken and written words were authenticated by seals, liminal agents operating at the very hinge of these two modes of communication. In either case, the seal extended royal authority beyond the person of the ruler. As an apparatus of state administration, seals produced an order of reality grounded in permanence by obscuring the contingency inherent

6 The autograph participation of the ruler seems to have virtually disappeared by the time of Charles the Bald, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 38, 47. Interest in documents’ graphic symbols was fueled by the influential vision of Peter Rück, who introduced a semiotic dimension to diplomatic studies, Graphische Symbole in mittelalterlichen Urkunden. Beiträge zur diplomatischen Semiotik, ed. P. Rück (Sigmaringen, 1996). On the monogram in Carolingian documents, see Ildar H. Garipzanov, “Metamorphoses of the early medieval signum of a ruler in the Carolingian World,” Early Medieval Europe 14 (2006), pp. 419–464 and his The Symbolic Language of Authority in the Carolingian World (Leiden, 2008). 7 G. Tessier, Recueil des actes de Charles II le Chauve, 3 vols. (Paris, 1943–1955), vol. 2, no. 76, pp. 214–17 (845, 10 October): . . . more regio manu propria subter firmavimus et de anulo nostro sigillari jussimus . . . See also Tessier’s comments on final clauses in ibid., vol. 3, p. 172. Die Urkunden Arnolfs, 887–899, ed. Paul F. Kehr, Diplomata regum Germaniae ex stirpe Karolinorum, 3, MGH, (Berlin, 1940), no. 189, pp. 292sq.: (896, 27 February): . . . et ut praeceptum absque omni inquietudine in sua soliditate stabile perseveret, manu nostra illud firmavimus ac more nostro insigniri jussimus . . . 8 Karl-Ferdinand Werner, “Missus—Marchio—Comes,” Histoire comparée de l’administration, ed. W. Paravicini and K.-F. Werner (Munich, 1980), pp. 191–239, at p. 220 and note 105; Rosamond McKitterick, The Carolingians and the Written Word (Cambridge, 1989), p. 68, notes a number of references in the early Germanic codes to the seal of a duke or of a count being used to transmit his orders. She is referring to a seal termed by some scholars sigillum citationis. This seal is mentioned in the Lex Alamannorum Hlotarii, chapters XXIII and XXVIII, in Leges Alamannorum, ed. Karl Lehmann, MGH, Leges nationum germanicarum, vol. 5 (Hanover, 1888), 2nd ed. by Karl A. Eckhardt (Hanover, 1966; reprint 1992); in the Lex Visigothorum II, 1, 19, in Leges Visigothorum, ed. Karl Zeumer, MGH, Leges nationum germanicarum, vol. 1 (Hanover, 1902; reprint 2005); and in the Leges Baiuwariorum, Textus legis primus, chapter XIII, in Leges Baiuwariorum, ed. Johannes Merkel, MGH, Leges, vol. 3 (Hanover, 1863; reprint 1993). Carolingian capitularies seem to indicate that the sigillum citationis derives its power from a royal delegation of its usage.

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in the individual ruler as a person with the continuing symbolic activity of statehood. In 939–940, when French and German kings contested the hegemony of Lorraine, a private individual who had donated land desired her gift to be reinforced anulo regis cujuscumque Deus regno preesse elegerit, that is, “by the seal of whichever king God would have selected to rule.”9 This statement implies that the presence of a royal seal was what mattered. Seals were, from the eighth century onward, experienced as operative objects through their association with the office of kingship. Royal seals thus achieved meaning as constitutive agents of the very conditions and framework that made their production and function possible. This official and effectual quality of the seal was further articulated through the re-use of seal-matrices. For instance, a matrix of Louis the German (d. 876), king of the East Frankish kingdom, was utilized without alteration by his son and successor, Louis the Younger (d. 882), and by Louis IV the Child (d. 911), king of Lorraine, the son of Arnulf, king of East Francia (d. 899).10 Louis II the Stammerer (d. 879), king of France, used the unaltered royal matrix of his father Charles the Bald (d. 877) even though he possessed a seal of his own as well.11 Furthermore new seal matrices were not necessarily prepared when rulers changed kingdoms; for, after all, the king remained a king. Carloman II (d. 884), son of Louis II the Stammerer, was king of Burgundy (879) and of Aquitaine (880) before becoming sole king of France (882), yet through all of these reigns he sealed with the same matrix.12 Seal usage thus related more to the office of kingship than to the territoriality of power. Once again, a contingent dimension of ruling authority, here of a geographic nature, was erased through the language of seals. Indeed, until late in the tenth century, Carolingian seal legends included only the name of the ruler and the titles rex (king) or imperator (emperor). A territorial designation was entirely 9 Quoted in Alain de Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique française et pontificale. II: L’acte privé (Paris, 1948), p. 140 at note 4. 10 Otto Posse, Die Siegel der Deutschen Kaiser und Könige von 751 bis 1806, 5 parts in 3 vols. (Dresden, 1909–1913), vol. 1, p. 10, plate 2 no. 7; p. 10, plate 3 no. 3; p. 11, plate 5 no. 8; vol. 3, pp. 7–8, 10. On the diplomatics of the Carolingians in Francia Orientalis, see Peter Johanek, “Die karolingischen Diplome der Francia orientalis,” in Typologie der Königsurkunden, pp. 115–125. 11 R.-H. Bautier, Recueil des actes de Louis II le Bègue, Louis III et Carloman II, 877–884 (Paris, 1978), p. XC; Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 25, p. 103, and nos. 31–32, pp. 109–110. 12 Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 33, p. 111.

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absent; the emphasis was on the function and on the nature and degree of ruling authority as defined by the title.13 It was therefore along titular lines that matrices were to be engraved afresh, that is, when a king became emperor. To the best of my knowledge, no Carolingian emperor retained the title rex on his seal,14 nor did any Carolingian ruler until the late tenth century indicate on his seal the people or territory of which he was the king.15 The congruity between seal and royal office was perhaps best expressed in diplomatic discourse where, as we have seen, the king ordered his seal to be affixed. The seal was not a personal possession; it belonged to the royal office, of which it constituted a ritual appendage, from which it derived the power of representing royal authority, and for which it constituted a semiotic field of practice and significance. Several additional usages further illustrate the seal’s role in the definition and validation of kingship. The use of seals spread in parallel to the Carolingian multiplication of kingships. In fact every Carolingian offspring who ruled a kingdom also used a seal. Louis II the Stammerer, the eldest son of Charles the Bald and king of West Francia, sealed a diploma the very day following his coronation in December 877; the diplomas he had previously issued as the recognized heir to the kingdom of France had been endorsed only with his monogram.16

13 On their seals, Merovingian kings titled themselves reges francorum: Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, nos. 4–11, pp. 80–87. Uncharacteristically, Charlemagne used a territorial legend on his earlier seal (769–813): + xre protege carolum regem) franc(o) r(um): Ibid., no. 16, p. 95. A golden bull of Charles the Bald may have had a territorial legend (ca. 877), but its description remains controversial: Ibid., no. 30, p. 108. Titles used in documents issued in the name of the Frankish kings were also devoid of territorial precision until the tenth century. Rulers of “ethnic” kingdoms, such as Bavaria or Aquitaine, tended however to include a territorial designation in their diplomas: Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 46, 55. 14 Conversely, when Lothar II, king of Lorraine (855–869), reused the imperial matrix previously employed by his father Lothar I (between 840 and 855), he had the term aug(ustum) in the legend replaced by reg(em): Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 22, p. 101, no. 50, p. 126. G. Kornbluth, “The Seal of Lothar II: Model and Copy,” Francia 17 (1990), pp. 55–68, proposed (at p. 60) that the engraved crystal on the “Lothar Cross” at Aachen was Lothar II’s seal-die, which he had copied from Lothar I’s seal; see also I. Garipzanov, “The Image of Authority in Carolingian Coinage: the image of a ruler and Roman imperial tradition,” Early Medieval Europe 8(1999), pp. 197–218. 15 Lothar, king of Francia occidentalis (954–986), displayed a territorial legend on his second seal (975): Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no 46, p. 123. 16 Bautier, Recueil des actes de Louis II, p. XXV. Louis II had been king of Aquitaine since 867, but no document issued in his name during this period has come down to us.

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The earliest kings of Aquitaine,17 the kings of West Francia,18 the kings of Italy,19 the kings of Provence,20 the kings of Burgundy,21 the kings of Lorraine,22 the kings of Bavaria,23 and the kings of Germany,24 all sealed upon their assumption of the royal office during the ninth century. Even rival contestants for a given kingdom sealed concurrently. Carloman II, for instance, while king of Burgundy (in 879) had a competitor in the person of Boso, count of Vienne (d. 887), who had also been elected king of Burgundy and Provence and who issued sealed diplomas in his own name.25 Similarly, the Robertians Odo of Paris

17 See above note 16. Seals of the kings of Aquitaine: Louis the Pious (781–806); Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, p. 98 at note 1; Pippin I (817–838): Ibid., nos. 47–49, pp. 124–125.; Pippin II (839–848): Ibid., p. 125 at note 3. 18 Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, nos. 14–46, pp. 93–123. On the evolution of the royal chancery in West Francia during the ninth century, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 27–30. 19 Luigi Schiaparelli, Diplomi di Berengario I. Fonti per la storia d’ltalia, 35 (Rome, 1903), no. 12, p. 41 on the seals of Berengar, king of Italy (888–915); L. Schiaparelli, I diplomi di Guido et di Lamberto re. Fonti per la storia d’ltalia, 36 (Rome, 1906), p. XVIII on the seals of Guy, king of Italy (889–891), and of his son Lambert. On the evolution of the royal chancery in Italy during the ninth century, see Bautier. “La chancellerie,” pp. 22–25. 20 Seals of the kings of Provence: Charles (855–863), Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 52, p. 128; Boso (879–882): Ibid., no. 53, p. 129, especially at note 2; Louis III the Blind (890–901): Ibid., nos. 54–55, pp. 130–131. On the evolution of the royal chancery in Provence during the ninth century, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 25–27. 21 Seals of the kings of Burgundy: Rudolph I (888–912): Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 56, p. 132; Rudolph II (912–937, king of Italy between 922–925): L. Schiaparelli, Diplomi di Rodolfo II et di Lodovico III. Fonti per la storia d’ltalia, 37 (Rome, 1910), p. XIII, and Théophile Dufour, Etude sur la diplomatique royale de Bourgogne Jurane (888–1032), BNF, Ms. fr. Nouv. Acq. 11727, fol. 47–49, 103sq; Conrad (937–993): Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, nos. 57–58, pp. 133–134; Rudolph III (993–1032): Ibid., no. 59, p. 135. The acta of the kings of Burgundy have been published: Die Urkunden der burgundischen Rodolfinger, ed. Theodor Schieffer et al., Regum Burgundiae e stirpe Rudolfina, diplomata et acta, MGH, (Munich, 1983). 22 Seals of the kings of Lorraine: Lothar (855–869): Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 50, p. 126; Zwendibold (895–900): Ibid., no. 51, p. 127. On the evolution of the royal chancery in Lorraine during the ninth century, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 20–22. 23 Seals of the kings of Bavaria: Louis the German (829–831): Die Urkunden Ludwigs des Deutschen, 829–876, Karlmanns, 876–879, und Ludwigs des Jüngeren, 876–882, ed. Paul Kehr, Diplomata regum et imperatorum Germaniae, II, MGH, (Berlin, 1932–1934), p. XXXII; Carloman (830–880): Posse, Siegel, vol. I, plate 3 no. 1; vol. III, p. 8. 24 Posse, Siegel, vol. I, plates 2 to 5; vol. III, pp. 7–11. On the evolution of the royal chancery in Germany during the ninth century, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 18–20. 25 Bautier, Recueil des actes de Louis II, pp. XXXIII, XXXIX, XC: crowned in 879, Carloman II received Burgundy and Aquitaine in 880; from October 879, Boso had been elected and crowned king of Provence and included part of Burgundy in his dominion. The first extant sealed diploma of Carloman II was issued by his chancery

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(d. 898), Robert I (d. 923), and Rudolph (duke of Burgundy and Robert I’s son-in-law, d. 936), who reigned over France in competition with the Carolingian Charles III the Simple (d. 922–923), all issued sealed royal diplomas.26 However, as soon as a king was functionally replaced by a non-royal official such as a marchio or a duke, the use of seals disappeared although the political entity was still called regnum and the overall administrative structure remained otherwise intact.27 Such was the sequence for the on-again, off-again kingdoms of Burgundy, Franconia, Saxony, Bavaria and Aquitaine.28 When a high official was elected king, and particularly in the era of non-Carolingian kingships,

in November 879. Carloman used the same seal as crowned king (879), king of Burgundy and Provence (880, 882), and king of Francia Occidentalis (882). On the seal and chancery of Boso as king of Provence and Burgundy (879), see René Poupardin, Recueil des actes des rois de Provence, 855–928 (Paris, 1920), pp. VI–VII, LX–LXI. The only extant seal impression of Boso is a forgery, but Boso sealed his diplomas as evidenced by their formulas of corroboration: Ibid., no 17, p. 32 (8 November 879), and R.-H. Bautier, “Les diplômes royaux carolingiens pour l’église de Langres”, Les Cahiers Haut-Marnais (1986), pp. 145–77, at p. 155. See also above at note 20. 26 On Odo’s chancery and sealed diplomas, see R.-H. Bautier, Recueil des actes d’Eudes roi de France, 888–898 (Paris, 1967), pp. XVIII, LVI, LXXV–LXXVI and Bautier, “Le règne d’Eudes à la lumière des diplômes expédiés par sa chancellerie,” Comptes-rendus de I’Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres (1961), pp. 140–57. On Robert’s and Rudolph’s chancery and sealed diplomas, see Jean Dufour, Recueil des actes de Robert ler et de Raoul rois de France, 922–936 (Paris, 1978), pp. XXV–L, LIV–LV. Seals are described in Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 39, p. 117, no. 43, p. 120. No seals of Robert are extant, although there is documentary evidence for their existence. On Charles the Simple’s chancery and sealed diplomas, see Philippe Lauer, Recueil des actes de Charles III le Simple, 893–923, 2 vols. (Paris, 1940–1949), vol. 2, pp. XLVII–XLVIII; his seal is described in Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 40, p. 118. 27 On Carolingian regna and ducatus, see K.-F. Werner, “La genèse des duchés en France et en Allemagne,” Settimane di studio del centro italiano di studi sull’alto medioevo 27 (1980), pp. 175–207, reprinted in Werner, Vom Frankenreich zur Entfaltung Deutschlands und Frankreichs (Sigmaringen, 1984), pp. 278–310. 28 In early tenth-century Bavaria, in an action unprecedented on the part of the principes, Duke Arnulf sealed documents issued in his own name in 908 and 927, and was followed in this practice by his brother and successor Duke Berthold, R.-H. Bautier, “Le cheminement du sceau et de la bulle des origines mésopotamiennes au XIIIe siècle occidental,” Revue française d’héraldique et de sigillographie, 54–59 (1984–1989), pp. 41–84, at p. 65 draws on the study of H. Fichtenau (at Bautier’s note 55) who showed how the use of a seal by Duke Arnulf paralleled his assertion of political independence and royal ambitions vis à vis the non-Carolingian king of Germany, Conrad, whom he opposed. However, doubt has been cast upon the authenticity of these early Bavarian sealings, of which there remains only textual evidence, A. Stieldorf, Siegelkunde (Hannover, 2004), p. 41. Other similar early instances of princely seals have also been called into question, Harry Bresslau, Handbuch der Urkundelehre für Deutschland und Italien, 2 vols, 2nd ed. (Leipzig, 1912–1931; reprint, Berlin, 1958, with a volume of indices), vol. 1, pp. 708–709. See below, at note 48, on seals attributed to ninth-century dukes of Brittany.

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he would promptly start to seal documents issued in his own name. Such was the case with Boso, count of Vienne, elected king of Provence in 879, with Odo, count of Paris, elected king of France in 888, with Odo’s brother Robert, elected king of France in 922, and with Odo’s nephew-in-law, Rudolph, duke of Burgundy, elected king of France in 923. The Welf Rudolph (d. 912) was raised from count in the transjurane region of Burgundy to king of Burgundy in 888. In Italy, Guy of Spoleto (d. 894) was also elected king in 888. In Germany, Conrad, duke of Franconia, was elected king in 911 and was succeeded in 919 by Henry, the former duke of Saxony.29 None of these kings could boast direct Carolingian descent to enhance their royal legitimacy, but they all sealed: performance of this ritual generated authenticity as a royal ruler. Indeed, it is clear that these non-Carolingian rulers sealed only in their royal capacity. For there are extant acts of Odo as count of Paris, of Robert, as count and abbot of Saint Martin, of Rudolph as duke in Burgundy, of Boso, as count of Vienne, and of the Welf Count Rudolph.30 All of their princely charters overtly imitated the royal diploma, including an invocation, mention of God’s Grace in the title, e.g. Odo misericordia Dei comes, and even a monogram, but they did not display a seal. Post-Carolingian Kingship: Sealing in Transition The pattern of seal usage just outlined shows how ninth-century Carolingian sealing functioned as a ritual manifestation of the royal office. 29 On the fragmentation of Carolingian Europe, see R. McKitterick, The Frankish Kingdoms under the Carolingians, 751–987 (London, New York, 1983), pp. 262–64, 306–09; Pierre Riché, The Carolingians. A Family who forged Europe (Philadelphia, 1993), pp. 207–280. For the seals of these non-Carolingian rulers, see above at notes 19, 20, 21, 25, 26. For the seals of the non-Carolingian German rulers, see Posse, Siegel, vol. I, plate 6 nos. 1–5 (Conrad), 6–7 (Henry), vol. V, pp. 10–11 (Conrad and Henry). For a survey of early Ottonian and Salien diplomatics, see Theo Kölzer, “Die ottonischsalische Herrscherurkunde,” in Typologie der Königsurkunden, pp. 127–142. 30 For Eudes’ charters issued when he was count of Paris and abbot of St-Martin of Tours and of Marmoutier, see Bautier, Recueil des actes d’Eudes, nos. 55–58, pp. 212–26. For Robert’s charters issued when he was count and abbot of St-Martin of Tours, Marmoutier, and Saint-Armand, see Dufour, Recueil des actes de Robert et de Raoul, nos. 37–49, pp. 139–200. For Rudolph’s charters issued when he was duke of Burgundy, see ibid., nos. 50–51, pp. 201–207. For Boso’s charters issued when he was count, see Poupardin, Recueil des actes des rois de Provence, nos. 15–17, pp. 29–32. For Rudolph’s charters issued when he was count in the region of transjurane Burgundy, see Schieffer, Die Urkunden der burgundischen Rudolfinger, nos. 1–2, pp. 91–95.

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With the resulting spread of documentary sealing to non-Carolingian kings however, royal diplomas came to incorporate elements which derived from non-royal diplomatic traditions, particularly with respect to means of validation. For example, Rudolph III (d. 1032), though king of Burgundy, sporadically simply did not seal his diplomas.31 The king of France, Rudolph, ordered that the signa of the potentates of his entourage be inscribed so as to confer additional strength, a practice which, while common in charters, did not appear in contemporary diplomas issued by royal chanceries. Rudolph as king also issued a document which was not validated by his seal, but in which a knife was expressly described as settling the transaction; this again was a common technique among potentates to establish that a contract had been duly agreed.32 These instances, as several others, reflect the new trends that were emerging in the use and meaning of royal seals and documentary practices. By the time of King Rudolph (923–936), the majority of French royal diplomas were being drawn up by their ecclesiastical recipients. This practice was to be found earlier, albeit to a much lesser extent, in Merovingian times.33 Among the Carolingians, Charlemagne appears to have been the first to allow diplomas to be drawn up outside his own chancery, in the abbey of Saint-Denis; Charles the Bald entrusted the abbey of Saint-Martin of Tours with similar scribal activity, and many of the diplomas he delivered in favor of yet other abbeys and churches have also been shown to have been drafted outside the royal chancery.34 This is not to say, however, that Carolingian diplomas thus prepared did not receive the royal seal. On the contrary, the beneficiaries duly submitted the texts drafted in their scriptoria to the ruler’s chancery for his approbation, manus propria (monogram), and seal.

31

Schieffer, Die Urkunden der burgundischen Rudolfinger, pp. 221–223 (in 994). Rudolph’s documents with appeals for potentates’ signa, and with knife, were not written in the royal chancery, see Dufour, Recueil des actes de Robert ler et de Raoul, p. XLIV, no. 12, pp. 47–52 (nostrosque primates subsignare jubemus, 927), p. XLI, no. 8, pp. 34–38 (Rodulfus, gratia Dei rex . . . nostrum accepimus cultellum et, misso super altare Sancti Symphoriani, reddimus eamdem terram, 925). 33 D. Ganz, “Bureaucratic Shorthand and Merovingian Learning,” Ideal and Reality in Frankish and Anglo-Saxon Society. Studies presented to J.M. Wallace-Hadrill, ed. P. Wormald (Oxford, 1983), pp. 58–75. 34 G. Tessier, “Originaux et pseudo-originaux du chartrier de Saint-Denis,” Bibliothèque de I’Ecole des chartes 106 (1945–46), pp. 35–69. The latest surveys of these developments can be found in Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 28, 53–60, and Mersiowsky, “Towards a Reappraisal of Carolingian Sovereign Charters.” 32

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With the advent of Carolingian rule, laymen were no longer to be found among the staff of the royal chancery,35 and the production of royal documents became the exclusive responsibility of clerics from the chapel, that is, the clergy employed in the Palace, supervised by chancellors who were also clerics. Thus from Carolingian times onward, it was normative for the Frankish state to draw upon the resources of the Church for expertise in drafting royal documents. Whether performed in the chancery, or outside by recipients based in ecclesiastical establishments, the scribal operation invariably involved recourse to the services of clerics.36 The effective control by churchmen of the means of literate communication was not limited to the service of the king, this being but a single facet of their broader commitment to the written word as a tool that articulated and supported their own ideological positions. The evolution of documents produced both by late Carolingian and early Capetian kings reveals important areas of congruence between

35 This view of the activities of laymen in the Merovingian chancery has been challenged by Ganz, “Bureaucratic shorthand.” See a careful review of the debate in Goffart, “Charters Earlier than 800,” p. 917sq. In Carolingian times royal judgements (placita) were drafted in the office of the Count of the Palace, possibly by a staff of lay scribes. Carolingian placita are very few, and none is extant for the reign of Louis the Pious, see Tessier, Diplomatique royale, pp. 115–118, and Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 68–72. 36 On the clerical monopoly of writing, see the remarks by Tessier, Diplomatique royale, pp. 41–57; J. Dufour, “L’au-delà a travers les actes des rois de France et les rouleaux mortuaires du Xe au XIIe siècle,” Didaskalia 10 (1980), pp. 211–21, at pp. 212, 216; Dufour, Recueil des actes de Robert ler et de Raoul, pp. XVIII, XL; Jean Dunbabin, France in the Making, 843–1180 (Oxford, 1985), p. 23; Léopold Génicot, Les actes publics (Tumhout, 1972), p. 21; McKitterick, Frankish Kingdoms, pp. 81, 334. I focus here on documents issued in the name of kings, and therefore on the circumstances of their production, which involved a clerical staff. The debate over the extent of lay literate practices in Carolingian Europe has received much attention; see for instance Brian Stock, The Implications of Literacy. Written Language and Models of Interpretation in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries (Princeton, 1983), pp. 12–34; McKitterick, The Carolingians and the Written Word; Janet L. Nelson, “Literacy in Carolingian Government,” in The Uses of Literacy in early Medieval Europe, ed. R. McKitterick (Cambridge, 1990), pp. 259–296; Transforming the Medieval World: Uses of Pragmatic Literacy in the Middle Ages, ed. Franz-Josef Arlinghaus (Turnhout, 2006); Karl Heidecker, “Communication by Written Texts in Court Cases: Some Charter Evidence (ca. 800–ca. 1100),” in Marco Mostert ed., New Approaches to Medieval Communication. Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy 1. (Turnhout 1999), pp. 101–126; Philippe Depreux, “The Development of Charters confirming Exchange by the Royal Administration (Eighth-Tenth Centuries),” in Charters and the Use of the Written Word in Medieval Society, ed. K. Heidecker (Turnhout 2000), pp. 43–62. These studies also address the interactions between oral and written modes of communication.

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liturgical and diplomatic vocabularies, which serves to confirm, if further confirmation were needed, the prominent place occupied by the sacred in the substantiation of medieval political power.37 The texts of diplomas include systematic and finely developed spiritual preambles which typically emphasize such religious considerations as the transitory nature of rewards in this life and the security of eternal reward.38 Though the peremptory tone of royal charters in expressing the sovereign’s will is striking, written expressions of royal authority are invariably also permeated with a sense of accountability to God. In the final clauses of such documents, the permanence and security of the royal writ was increasingly entrusted to divine guarantee, with added threats of spiritual sanctions should its provisions be violated.39 Yet, neither the production of diplomas outside of the royal chancery, nor the appeal to divine authority under Carolingian rulers resulted in the contemporaneous creation of unsealed royal diplomas. This format first appeared only in the post-Carolingian period. The early Capetians, and their Robertian predecessors such as King Rudolph,40 utilized other modes of documentary validation drawn from private procedures, including the exchange of symbolic objects, the inscription of crosses, and the addition of the signa of their entourage (Fig. 16).41 Perfectly authentic early Capetian diplomas survive

37 Early medieval royal diplomas included religious textual elements as early as in Merovingian times. In the late Carolingian period, such elements came to permeate more systematically many parts of the document such as the titles, preambles, and sanctions. On early Capetian diplomatics, see Olivier Guyotjeannin, “Actes royaux français. Les trois premiers Capétiens (987–1060),” in Typologie der Königsurkunden, pp. 43–63. 38 Paul Bonenfant, Cours de diplomatique. Deuxième partie: Diplomatique spéciale (Liège, 1948), p. 5; Génicot, Les actes publics, p. 37; Heinrich Fichtenau, Arenga. Spätantike und Mittelalter im Spiegel von Urkundenformeln (Cologne, 1957), passim; Dufour, “L’au-delà,” p. 217sq.; Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 44–48. 39 Tessier, Recueil des actes de Charles le Chauve, vol. III, p. 175. On the increasing documentary recourse to spiritual sanctions by the end of the reigns of Lothar I and Charles the Bald, see Bautier, “La chancellerie,” pp. 58–59. 40 See above note, 32. 41 With Hugh Capet, witness-lists began to appear regularly in royal charters as well, as if the king’s personal action was no longer sufficient to render the royal deed authoritative. See a witness-list in a diploma (925) from the Robertian king Rudolph in Dufour, Actes de Robert Ier et de Raoul, no. 8, p. 34. On the general appearance of witness-list in early Capetian documents, see Dunbabin, France in the Making, pp. 129sq.; Génicot, Les actes publics, p. 41; Jean-Francois Lemarignier, Le gouvernement royal aux premiers temps capétiens, 987–1108 (Paris, 1965), pp. 73–75, 136–39. O. Guyotjeannin, “Les actes d’Henri Ier et la chancellerie royale dans les années 1020–1060,” Comptes-rendus de L’Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres (1988), pp. 81–97, at

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which appear never to have been sealed.42 These, however, seem invariably to have been drafted outside of the chancery, for those drafted by this bureau appear always to have been sealed.43 The seal remained an established formula of kingship for members of the royal chancery, but royal seals from the earliest Capetians to Philip I (d. 1108) lacked the official significance that had been present in Carolingian times, and they were no longer systematically secured by recipients for documents drafted in the name of the king. In assessing these changes, diplomatists have concluded that the royal diploma had been subject to contamination by the diplomatic discourse of the private charter.44 This alteration was interpreted as a sign of the weakening of royal authority; it indeed corresponds temporally to the feeble rule of the early Capetians. However, princely power as evoked within magnates’ charters, which lack seals and include lists of witnesses and symbolic objects, has been assessed as essentially royal in nature since the content of these charters, such as grants of immunity, indicate that princes were exercising regalian rights. One may ask why, if the presence of a witness-list and the absence of a seal do not expunge the quality of regality from princely charters, it should be presumed to do so from royal diplomas. Furthermore, nonchancery scribes responsible for royal documents have been shown to have been scrupulous in emulating chancery standards while preparing these documents. Lastly, the texts of magnates’ charters also confirm that such documents were drafted in imitation of the royal

p. 91; Guyotjeannin stresses the distinction between documents produced by the royal chancery, which aims at retaining Carolingian diplomatic models (and are successful until Philip I [1052–1108]), and those redacted by beneficiaries, which include signa and lists of witnesses. On the distinction between public and private acta, see note 44 below. 42 Christian Pfister, Etudes sur le règne de Robert le Pieux (Paris, 1885), pp. XXV– XXXII. 43 Guyotjeannin, “Les actes d’Henri Ier,” p. 91. 44 Early medieval documentary culture recognized a distinction between private charters (involving private individuals) and public acta (issued by rulers). By the eleventh century, this distinction became blurred, as diplomatic formats (textual formulae, status of the author of the document) and juridical content (nature of recorded actions and warranties) ceased to coincide. Historians are now careful to consider documents produced from the eleventh century onward from the viewpoint of their authors and, rather than assuming public authority, they prefer to assess that which might proceed from and represent such authority, Olivier Guyotjeannin, Michel Picke, and BenoîtMichel Tock, La diplomatique médiévale (Turnhout, 1993; 3rd rev. ed., 2006; references are to the first edition), pp. 104–105.

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model.45 Consideration of charters and diplomas from the perspective of their locus of production thus brings a different light to the medieval conceptualization of the public-private dichotomy. The issue of the “privatization” of the royal diploma must be readdressed, not from the point of view of the relationship between text and power, but from that of the relationship between text and script. What actually changed was the status and function of the written word within the framework of a mixed orality. Rather than seeing the new appearance of witness-lists within royal charters simply as specific evidence for diminished royal authority, I see this as indicating a new importance attaching to testimony, which is also reflected in a related change in the function of the written charter, now termed testimonium or memoriale.46 The recording of witnesses’ names was expected to encapsulate the collective memory of men regarded as being of a character and status suitable to bear testimony for the business recorded in writing. This means that though a charter may have lost strength as a legal dispositive deed, it gained by becoming a proceeding preserving the performance of consensus. Thus the spreading use of the witness-list reveals a preference for processes involving the bonding of persons, within a framework of reliance upon writing. In its focus on process, this tendency also articulated a changing conception of authority itself. The notion of a public power proclaimed within an official document in the name of the state-ruler came, at the turn of the second millennium, to be replaced by an acknowledgement that the ruler had to share responsibility for grants or confirmations with others held in public esteem and able to attest, and possibly to enforce, the decision. This in turn implied a social and political network in which the remembrance of a shared action and the future memory of its execution had begun to displace the direct delegation of authority as the principal buttress of power and prerogative.

45 Guyotjeannin, “Les actes de Henri Ier,” p. 94; Bonenfant, Cours de diplomatique. Diplomatique spéciale, p. 51. 46 O. Guyotjeannin, “Les actes établis par la chancellerie royale sous Philippe Ier,” Bibliothèque de L’Ecole des chartes 147 (989), pp. 29–48, at p. 31 (testimonium) and 45 (memoriale).

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chapter four Capetian Kings: The End of a Prerogative and the Re-Invention of the Royal Seal

Seals, sporadically affixed by kings if systematically applied by their more traditional chanceries, were undergoing a momentous shift. By the mid-eleventh century, they were losing their standing as an exclusively royal prerogative. French bishops systematically undertook to seal by the second half of the eleventh century (Fig. 9),47 and so did leading members of the lay aristocracy (Figs. 7, 8).48

47 Merovingian and Carolingian bishops had used their signet-rings to close letters; in some rare occurrences, they applied their rings to the lower margin of acta redacted in councils (see chapter 5 below, at notes 3 and 10) or, as seems the case with the charter given in 872 by Riculf, archbishop of Rouen, to confirm transactions (Arch. dep., Seine-Maritime, 14H156); Alain de Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique française et pontificale. Tome 1: Diplomatique générale (Paris, 1929), p. 356 and at note 2. Only traces of an applied seal subsist on Riculf ’s charter, while the validating clause seems to have been added at a later time, as the seal itself might have been. On the beginning of episcopal documentary sealing, see chapter 5 below; R.-H. Bautier, “Apparition, diffusion et évolution typologique du sceau épiscopal au Moyen Age,” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 / La diplomatique épiscopale avant 1250. Referate zum VIII. Internationalen Kongress für Diplomatik, Innsbruck, 1993 (Innsbruck, 1995), pp. 225–241, and Harmut Atsma et Jean Vezin, “Remarques paléographiques et diplomatiques sur les actes originaux des évêques de France du VIIe siècle à l’an Mil,” Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde, pp. 209–221; Ghislain Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France au XIe siècle,” in A propos des actes d’évêques. Hommage à Lucie Fossier, ed. Michel Parisse (Nancy, 1991), pp. 227–244; La Diplomatique française de Haut-Moyen Age, vol. 1, pp. 29–30. On the basis of still extant original charters, early ecclesiastical French seals belong to the bishops and archbishops of Reims (1040); Cambrai (then in the Empire, 1057), Amiens (1058); Bourges (1073); Noyon (1084); Soissons (1085); Laon (ca. 1087); Paris (1088); Chartres (1094); Meaux (1096); evidence from copies seem to indicate the presence of episcopal seals at Amiens (1036–1058), Langres (ca. 1050); Bayeux (ca. 1050), Poitiers (ca. 1050–1060), Nantes (1067), Sens (1067), Châlons-sur-Marne (ca. 1070), Rennes (ca. 1075), Tours (ca. 1075), Angers (1076), Rouen (1079–1110), Beauvais (1089), Le Mans (ca. 1092), and Arras (1097). 48 Several ninth-century references to non-royal secular sealing involve the dukes of Brittany at the borders of Francia Occidentalis. None of these early seals have come down to us, though mention of them is to be found in eleventh-century cartularies and chronicles. See instances of Breton princely charters that appeared to have been sealed in the Cartulaire de l’abbaye de Redon, ed. Aurélien de Courson (Paris, 1863), no. 240, pp. 187–89: Charter of Salomon (29 August, 868), . . . ac sigilli [sic] nostro sigillari jussimus . . . ; appendix no. 31, pp. 365sq.: Charter of Erispoë (ca. 851–857): . . . ac nos postea sigillo nostro sigillari jussimus . . . These cartularized charters can now be consulted in the fac-simile publication of the cartulary, Cartulaire de l’abbaye SaintSauveur de Redon, with an introduction byHubert Guillotel, André Chédeville et Bernard Tanguy (Rennes, 1998) Both of these charters and the references to their seals have been accepted as genuine by André Chedeville and Hubert Guillotel, La Bretagne des saints et des rois, Ve–Xe

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Seal usage also spread to members of the royal family, and the pattern of this diffusion is especially significant with respect to the allocation of kinghip among members of the royal kindred. Of royal children, the future Louis VI (d. 1137) was the first to use a seal. He did so as part of his of anticipated association to the throne, the only associated king ever to use a seal in this capacity. Between 1102–1108, several of his charters were sealed in this way, and in one of them Louis even refers to the seal of “his majesty,” while the legend on the seal itself reads sigillum lodovici designati regis.49 Later royal heirs used

siècles (Rennes, 1984), pp. 288, 319, although the term sigillum replaced anulus in final clauses only from the eleventh century onward, when the Redon cartulary was compiled in two stages, between 1062–1084, and 1085–1144. The vocabulary referring to seals within these transcribed acta is not consistent with known ninth-century formulae and thus may represent anachronistic interpolations. I wish to thank Julia Smith for sharing all of these references with me together with still more information about the sealed charters of Breton princes as contained in the cartularies of Redon and Prüm, and in the chronicle of Nantes. Professor Smith, however, does not share my doubts concerning ninth-century Breton princely sealing, Julia Smith, Province and Empire. Brittany and the Carolingians (Cambridge, 1992), p. 117. In any case, as with the bishops, the continuous tradition of sealing in Brittany is traceable only to the second half of the eleventh century, Emile Lefort des Ylouses, “Sceaux des ducs de Bretagne,” Annales de la Société d’histoire et d’archéologie de I’arrondissement de Saint-Malo (1978), pp. 92–103. Early aristocratic seals belong to Baldwin, count of Flanders (ca. 1038), William, duke of Normandy (ca. 1069), Guy-Geoffrey, count of Poitiers and duke of Aquitaine (ca. 1079), Fulk Réchin, comte d’Anjou (1085); Renaud II, comte de Bourgogne (1087– 1092); Hugues, comte de Blois-Champagne (1089); Hélie, comte du Maine (1092); William, comte de Nevers (1096); Neil, viscount of Saint-Sauveur (before 1092), Helie de La Fleche, count of Maine (1092), Stephen, count of Blois (ca. 1096), William, count of Mortain (1099–1104), Guy, count of Ponthieu (ca. 1100), Henry, count of Eu (1106), Odo I, duc de Bourgogne (1111). On the modalities and implications of the spread of seals from kings to nobles, see chapter 6 below, and B. Bedos-Rezak, “The Social Implications of the Art of Chivalry: The Sigillographic Evidence (France 1050–1250),” The Medieval Court in Europe, ed. E.R. Haymes, Houston German Studies 6 (1986), pp. 142–175, reprinted in Bedos-Rezak, Form and Order in Medieval France. Studies in Social and Quantitative Sigillography (Aldershot, 1993), no. VI; Bedos-Rezak, “Medieval Seals and the Structure of Chivalric Society,” The Study of Chivalry, ed. H. Chickering and Th.H. Seiler (Kalamazoo, 1988), pp. 313–372. 49 “Quod autem ibi in presentia nostra actum ac diffinitum est, nos quoque laudamus, adjudicamus et confirmamus et, ut stabile ac firmum permaneat, nostre majestatis sigillo corroboramus,” charter given by Louis in 1106 in favor of St-Pierre of Corneille, BNF, Mss. Lat. 17708, fol. 51, J. Dufour, Recueil des actes de Louis VI, roi de France (1108–1137), 4 vols (Paris, 1992–1994), vol. 1, no. 12, pp. 17–21. Louis’s seal as rex designatus is no longer extant but is known from a drawing by Mabillon and is attested by textual evidence from five charters issued between 1102 and 1108, Dufour, Recueil des actes de Louis VI, vol. 3, pp. 112–113; Achille Luchaire, Louis VI le Gros. Annales de sa vie et de son règne, 1081–1137 (Paris, 1890), p. 309; Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 65, p. 144. On the anticipatory association of heirs, see Andrew Lewis, “Antici-

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seals simply linked to their current apanage, with the only mention of their anticipated kingship being the occasional use of the word primogenitus, “first born”, in the legend.50 Contemporary with the designated king’s seal of Louis VI was the appearance of the first seal ever used by a French queen, Bertrada of Montfort (d. 1117).51 This sudden appearance of seal usage within the royal family may owe something to the troubled matrimonial life of King Philip I (d. 1108). His elopement and subsequent union with Bertrada of Monfort, wife of Count Fulk of Anjou (d. 1109), produced both children and a rivalry between Bertrada and Philip’s eldest son by his first wife, the future Louis VI. Louis’ elevation to the status of king-designate with the unprecedented matching seal buttressed the reigning king’s strategy to enhance his son’s position as heir to the throne. As queen, Bertrada’s name was frequently associated with that of Philip in the texts of royal diplomas, but she sealed no documents as queen until she became a dowager. Despite the incorporation of the royal title in its legend, Bertrada’s seal that was intended only for charters issued privately in her name. Her possibly deliberate attempt to assert her royal status by emulating the king’s sealing practice evidently stopped short of full participation in royal diplomatics. The same is true of her successor, Adelaide of Maurienne (d. 1154), queen of Louis VI. Adelaide’s prominent role in government is well documented by a total of ninety royal acta which mention her participation patory Association of the Heir in Early Capetian France,” American Historical Review 83 (1978), pp. 906–927. Just a few years earlier, the heir to the county of Flanders was sealing during his father’s lifetime with a seal inscribed: sigillum roberti comitis junioris; see his seal in René Laurent, Les sceaux des princes territoriaux belges, du Xe siècle à 1482, 2 vols. in 3 (Bruxelles, 1993), vol. I/1, p. 151. 50 Seals used by French princes prior to their accession to the throne were termed sigilla ante susceptum; they appear with the future Louis VIII (d. 1226), Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 74, p. 154. 51 On the seals of queens, see B. Bedos-Rezak, “Women, Seals, and Power,” Women and Power in the Middle Ages, ed. M. Erler and M. Kowaleski (Athens, London, 1988), pp. 61–82, at pp. 63–65, 75, reprinted in Form and Order, no. IX; Bedos-Rezak, “Medieval Women in French Sigillographic Sources,” Medieval Women and the Sources of Medieval History, ed. J.T. Rosenthal (Athens, London, 1990), pp. 1–36, at pp. 3, 8, reprinted in Form and Order, no. X; Kathleen D. Nolan, “The Tomb of Adelaide of Maurienne and the Visual Imagery of Capetian Queenship,” in Capetian Women, ed. K. Nolan (New York, 2003), pp. 45–76, at pp. 54–60, and K. Nolan, Queens in Stone and Silver: The Creation of a Visual Imagery of Queenship in Capetian France (New York, 2009), pp. 10–11, 21–34, 64–72, 78–98, 152–157. The seals of the French queens have been catalogued by Marie-Adelaïde Nielen, Corpus des sceaux français du Moyen Age. Tome III: Les sceaux des reines et des enfants de France (Forthcoming Paris, 2010).

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over a twenty-two-year period. Yet, again, there is no mention of the queen’s seal until her widowhood, when the personal administration of her dower required her to issue charters.52 Eleanor of Aquitaine, thus, was the first reigning consort to seal, though she did so exclusively in matters concerning the management of her duchy.53 Subsequent queenly seal usage was consistently confined to private matters; it never pertained to state affairs, even when Adele of Champagne (Fig. 17), together with the archbishop of Reims, was left in charge of the kingdom by Philip Augustus during the period he was away on crusade. Rather than empower the queen’s seal, the king in 1190 left a royal seal of absence, the ancestor of many later deputed administrative seals.54 In fact, all seals of the royal family, with the single exception of Louis as rex designatus, were thereafter limited to private affairs. Within the hierarchy of royal seals, whether lineal or administrative, the seal of the king stood as a unique source of authority; and through its medium so did the king himself, as the generative principle that gave life to seal impressions, to deputy seals, to all such metaphors of the king’s fertility. Functioning as an instrument for the idea of the state, the king’s seal proclaimed the cosmic essence of the ruler, icon and logos, matrix and genetrix, the one from whose generative power sprung the ongoing well-being of the kingdom (Figs. 6, 13). One may in conclusion ask: what did the royal sealed diploma, what did image and script, accomplish for kingship? The diploma’s material form and discursive format projected an image of orthodox kingship, sanctified by God, open to appeal from their subjects, generous where appropriate and, above all, in control of events. Medieval kingship had from its very outset been associated with writing. Writing stood both as a symbol of and as a medium for expressing and ensuring the continuity of the institution itself. Formulae, unstable as textual and iconic modes, received generic permanence as sealed diplomas. As a

52 In Louis VI’s acta, Queen Adelaide intervened to give consent, to provide her subscription, and even in the dating clause when it is computed by her reigning year, Dufour, Recueil des actes de Louis VI, vol. 4, p. 14 (list of royal acta including Adelaide’s participation); Adelaide’s seal and acta as a dowager are discussed in Dufour, Recueil des actes de Louis VI, vol. 3, pp. 219–221. 53 References are given above at note 51. 54 B. Bedos-Rezak, “Les sceaux au temps de Philippe Auguste,” in La France de Philippe Auguste—Le temps des mutations, ed. R.-H. Bautier (Paris, 1982), pp. 721–735, at p. 723, reprinted in Form and Order, no. II; see the seal in Dalas, Les sceaux des rois, no. 72, p. 152.

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paradigmatic object, the royal sealed diploma blurred contingencies, such as changes in dynastic, territorial, or individual status, abstracting them from their particular circumstances. The diploma legitimated new dynasties, Merovingian, Carolingian and Capetian, by identifying their rulers with established images and textual formulae of rulership. The royal charter took on an emblematic existence, which endowed its motifs with independent significance as defining elements of royal power. This symbolic operation permitted the creation of a past, and tended to create, across both space and time, the increasingly abstract notion of a somewhat impersonal entity: kingship. Thus set on stage, thus set in sign, kingship is above all the formula of kingship. When scribes came to draw up magnates’ charters, characterizing their nonroyal masters in terms borrowed from royal diplomatic discourse, this imitation of textual models should not be primarily identified with the diffusion of actual royal authority, or even simply with the growth of aristocratic power. For such emulation testifies too both to the tension generated by an ongoing differentiation of kingship through distinctive modes of representation, and to the appropriation of these latter through acculturation. The circulation of these cultural models endowed the royal charter with a semiotic value that was enhanced and underscored by the presence of the seal. Iconized, combining the visible and the legible, the medieval royal charter held simultaneously the forces of attraction, of representation, and of legitimization; it produced itself as power, thus constituting both the foundation and the import of its subject, kingship.

CHAPTER FIVE

EUCHARISTIC THEOLOGY AND EPISCOPAL SIGNATURE In his preface to the Gesta Episcoporum of Cambrai, a diocese within the northern French ecclesiastical province of Reims, the author assured his readers that he had reported only those facts described by trustworthy oral witnesses, or found in earlier chronicles or in the charters still extant in the local episcopal archives.1 Writing ca. 1025, the author of the Gesta expected such charters to be archaic documents which recorded past events. He referred to these charters as being adhuc in archivio, as surviving remnants of a type no longer produced, by way of explaining why he was obliged to depend upon oral testimonies for more recent events. As of 1025, episcopal activities in northern France had since about 950 only rarely resulted in the writing of episcopal charters. This low rate of charter production was maintained until the late 1070s.2 By 1 Michel Sot, “Rhétorique et technique dans les préfaces des gesta episcoporum (IXe. XIIe s.),” Cahiers de civilisation médiévale 28 (1985), pp. 181–200, at p. 195. 2 Not all the bishoprics under consideration were part of the eleventh-century kingdom of France, as some were then located in the Germanic Empire. Michèle Courtois, “Remarques sur les chartes originales des évêques antérieures à 1121 et conservées dans les Bibliothèques et Archives de France,” in A propos des actes d’évêques. Hommage à Lucie Fossier, ed. Michel Parisse (Nancy, 1991), pp. 45–77, at p. 51. Ghislain Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France au XIe siècle,” in A propos des actes d’évêques, pp. 227–244, who takes into consideration all episcopal acta extant for the eleventh century, that is, both originals and copies, comes up with larger numbers but his tables make it clear that the bulk of documentary activity took place in the later years of the eleventh century. Erik Van Mingroot, Les chartes de Gérard Ier, Liébert et Gérard II, évêques de Cambrai et d’Arras, comtes du Cambrésis (1012–1092/93) (Leuven, 2005), p. 9, notes that Gérard I (1012–1051) produced a charter every ten years ; his successor, Liébert (1051–1076), a charter a year; and Liébert’s successor, Gérard II (1076–1092), two charters and a half per year. French episcopal charters prior to 1200 are currently receiving much attention on the part of a team of French medievalists (the Groupe de recherche [GR] 0121 of the French Centre national de la recherche scientifique [C.N.R.S.]) who are preparing a critical edition of all such texts. See a state of the project, particularly as it relates to episcopal acts from the bishoprics of Amiens, Arras, Beauvais, Cambrai, Laon, Noyon, Reims, and Soissons in Michel Parisse, “Importance et richesse des chartes épiscopales. Les exemples de Metz et de Toul, des origines à 1200,” in A propos des actes d’évêques, pp. 19–43, especially pp. 41–43 where an appendice lists for each bishopric both available publications and work in progress; this report is updated in Parisse, “La recherche française sur les actes des évêques. Les travaux d’un groupe de recherche,” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 / La diplomatique épiscopale avant

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about 1050, however, and thus during the period of limited episcopal documentary output, the format of the episcopal charter changed significantly as it began to incorporate and to display an impressed image, the seal (Fig. 4).3 Such documentary sealing, heretofore a virtually exclusive prerogative of the royal chancery, constituted a radical departure from the previous non-royal diplomatic tradition; it also preceded the dramatic increase in episcopal charter production which occurred during the last quarter of the eleventh century. Sealing thus may have facilitated this increased production rather than having been the result of it. In this chapter, I wish to present the following suggestive parallel. There seems to have been some concomitance between northern French bishops’ involvement in the eucharistic controversy and their introduction of episcopal sealed charters. To be sure, the production of authoritative episcopal charters was also contemporary with the administrative activity of an episcopate invigorated by the program of the Gregorian reform. My purpose here is to bring to light a set of circumstances surrounding the adoption of sealing practices that specifically focuses on the seal’s signifying dimension. Episcopal Modes of Communication How visible was the bishop at the turn of the millennium? How were his presence manifested, his authority expressed, his person represented? Throughout the eleventh century, bishops tended to resort to

1250. Referate zum VIII. Internationalen Kongress für Diplomatik, Innsbruck, 1993 (Innsbruck, 1995), pp. 203–208. 3 For a comprehensive panorama of the appearance of episcopal seals, see RobertHenri Bautier, “Apparition, diffusion et évolution typologique du sceau épiscopal au Moyen Age,” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 / La diplomatique épiscopale avant 1250, pp. 225–241. On the appearance of seals on Northern French episcopal charters, see Ghislain Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France au XIe siècle,” pp. 234–238. On the epistolary use of signet-rings by bishops throughout the early middle ages, see Bautier, “Apparition, diffusion et évolution typologique du sceau épiscopal au Moyen Age,” p. 225. Hartmut Atsma and Jean Vezin, “Remarques paléographiques et diplomatiques sur les actes originaux des évêques de France du VIIe siècle à l’an mil,” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 / La diplomatique épiscopale avant 1250, pp. 209–221, remark (at p. 210) that no episcopal charters prior to the eleventh century were sealed although episcopal signet-ring-impressions were sometimes affixed to constitutiones issued in synods (p. 216); see notes 5 and 10 below for a further discussion of early episcopal sealing.

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letters rather than to charters as means of communication.4 Such letters were sealed, that is, closed by waxen impressions from episcopal rings. The letter’s opening by its recipient therefore involved destruction of the seal impression whose significance inhered in its integrity upon initial receipt.5 By means of the skilled deployment of a carefully learned and

4

See for instance the case of Bishop Lambert of Arras (1093–1115), who had 23 acta issued in his name and gathered a corpus of 128 letters, 41 of which he sent and 73 of which he received (14 letters were neither sent by nor addressed to him). Lambert’s epistolary corpus is unusual by contemporary standards in that it contains a greater number of received rather than sent letters: Laurent Morelle, “La pratique épistolaire de Lambert, evêque d’Arras (1093–1115),” in Regards sur la correspondance (de Cicéron à Armand Barbès), ed. Daniel Odon Hurel, Les Cahiers du GRHIS 5 (1996), pp. 37–57, and “Archives épiscopales et formulaire de chancellerie au XIIe siècle. Remarques sur les privilèges épiscopaux connus par le Codex de Lambert de Guînes, évêque d’Arras (1093/94–1115),” in Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 / La diplomatique épiscopale avant 1250, pp. 255–267, at p. 255. Giles Constable, Letters and Letter-Collections (Turnhout, 1976), stresses the variety of medieval epistolary styles and contents, notes the prodigious flowering of letter-writing in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, and reminds us that a wide variety of business could be cast in the form of a letter. Some diplomatists have argued that, unlike charters and diplomas, medieval letters served no legal or administrative purpose, but others have successfully shown that there is no clear distinction between official documents and private letters (Constable, Letters and Letter-Collections, pp. 21–23). 5 See above, at note 3. On letter sealing, see Constable, Letters and Letter-Collections, pp. 47, 53. Bishop Lambert of Arras began a letter to Manassès, archbishop of Reims, with the following remarks: “We have recently received a letter marked with your seal from a layman we have never met and whose name we ignore. Opening this letter in front of our brothers, we discovered that our esteemed colleague Bishop Hugh of Châlons had been made prisoner . . . As this letter ordered us to stop praising God for this reason, our brothers doubted that the letter came from you, given the facts that the messenger was unknown to us and that the injunction did not match scriptural precepts . . . ;” cited in French by Morelle, “La pratique épistolaire de Lambert, evêque d’Arras (1093–1115),” pp. 42–43. The Latin text of the letter is available in PL CLXII, no. 70, cols. 674–675: . . . Litteras sigillo vestro signatas a quodam laico et facie et nomine nobis ignoto nuper suscepimus, et eas coram fratribus nostris aperientes reperimus venerabilem coepiscopum nostrum domnum Hugonem Catalaunensem in captione detineri . . . Post haec vero, cum dixissent ut hac de causa a divinis laudibus cessaremus, dubitaverunt fratres nostri a sede vestrae discretionis hujusmodi litteras processisse, tum quia legatus omnibus ignotus erat, tum quia praeceptum hoc Veteri et Novo Testamento minime concordat . . . Lambert’s rhetorical assumption of forgery (which enabled him to lecture his archbishop in canon law) sheds an interesting light on the seal’s inability to secure provenance and authenticity. What gave Lambert his rhetorical opportunity was the messenger’s unfamiliarity, even though the archbishop’s seal was perfectly recognizable. We have here, therefore, some evidence for the secondary status of letter seals as signs of authority, and for the key role of the messenger as, at once, the bearer of the letter and often the spokesman for a message only sketched out in the letter itself. See a further discussion of the messenger’s role in delivering letters below at note 6.

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crafted rhetoric, such letter-writing was experienced as instrumental both for self-representation and for ordering affairs. The principal and characteristic assumption in these letters was that two personnae were speaking face to face. Since this effect could be achieved only by those who had mastered the art of composition through training in rhetoric, rhetorical style was crucial for imprinting the identity of the letter-writer within the body of the letter, thereby securing the letter’s genuineness. Thus, informing the efficacy of letters as media was the notion that their texts embodied their authors, producing authenticity as a matter of ‘author-ity’ and identity. The ultimate fluency and utility of this epistolary genre demonstrates the achievement of cathedral schools in the eleventh century, where the work of scholars in cathedral chapters overlapped considerably with that of chancellors and secretaries in the bishops’ courts.6 The milieu just described, however, did not have the same degree of control over another aspect of episcopal writing, the charter. While bishop’s letters emanated from the world of their schools and courts, episcopal charters were often designed and drafted in the writing bureaus of the charters’ beneficiaries, most usually monastic establishments.7 Whereas copies of epistolary texts remained in the archives of 6

Jacques Verger, “Les écoles au XIe siècle,” in Fulbert de Chartres, précurseur de l’Europe médiévale?, ed. Michel Rouche (Paris, 2006), pp. 33–42, at p. 38; John Van Engen, “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries,” in Dialektik und Rhetorik im früheren und hohen Mittelalter, ed. Johannes Fried (Munich: 1997), pp. 97–132. While cogently demonstrating the extent to which the postmillennial world of affairs drew upon the resources of epistolary rhetoric, Van Engen also notes that prescholastic great masters, several of whom were chanceryscholars (Anselm of Laon, Peter Comestor) or bishops (William of Champeaux, Peter Lombard), left virtually no letters. He ponders the possibility of a shift in intellectual emphasis from letter to commentary (p. 130), and I would suggest that this shift also involved the passage from letter to sealed charter. The immense corpus of letters exchanged throughout the eleventh and twelfth centuries shows a particular tendency toward a personalization of style and contents, and a reliance on authorial style as a proof of authenticity (see note 5 above and chapter 6 below, at notes 2–4). Nevertheless, important information could be left out of letters and entrusted to their couriers for oral delivery: Constable, Letters and LetterCollections, pp. 34, 48, 53, and see specific examples of letters referring explicitly to the messenger’s knowledge of questions to be put orally to the recipient in Morelle, “La pratique épistolaire de Lambert, evêque d’Arras (1093–1115),” pp. 45–46. 7 See instances of episcopal acta drafted by beneficiaries in Patrick Demouy, Actes des archevêques de Reims d’Arnoul à Renaud II, 957–1139, Thèse pour le doctorat de IIIe cyle en histoire (Nancy, 1982); Annie Dufour-Malbezin, Actes des évêques de Laon des origines à 1151 (Paris, 2001), and Simone Lecoanet, Les actes des évêques d’Amiens des origines au début du XIIIe siècle, thèse de l’Ecole nationale des chartes, 2 vols. (Paris, 1957). In Reims and Laon, the episcopal staff maintained a relatively

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their senders, episcopal charters were typically kept in the archives of the recipients. Letters derived their authority through the projection of authorial identity. Charters, by contrast, invoked God’s authority, and derived their import from a visible affinity with Holy Scripture. Such an affinity was suggested by graphic logic, which involved the inscription of a Chrismon, Trinitarian invocations, biblical arenga, signing with the cross, divine maledictions, and threats of excommunication against whomever might challenge the action recorded in the charter.8 So, while letters functioned in the place of their authors as their personal rhetorical self-representations, charters, even though formulated in the first-person voice of the bishop, were fundamentally impersonal, and were not instruments for representing oneself to another. It may thus seem paradoxical that by the late eleventh century, the charter was emerging as the preferred means of episcopal representation. Attention to a key distinction between letter- and charteroperation reveals that the letter’s performance centered on its legibility (as rhetorical text exchanged among individuals of similar schooling) whereas the charter’s performance hinged on its visibility (as a form of “Scripture”) and its materiality (as a ritual object). The charter ultimately achieved a wider circulation, particularly among lay elites who, experiencing the manuscript charter as kindred to Scripture, could conceive of it as a ceremonial space of sacred and secure inscription. For learned bishops, however, the transition from letters to charters required that the charter become capable of conveying the effect of personalization achieved by the letter. This was accomplished by exploiting not the charter’s diplomatic discourse but its materiality. Indeed, the significant change in the format of episcopal charters ca. 1050 centered on the incorporation and permanent display of an impressed image, the seal, initially leaving untouched the charter’s textual formulae. That the seals affixed to charters were different from the seals that were already part of the pre-existent episcopal panoply of signs may be adduced from several observations. From the early medieval period, rings had been symbols of episcopal investiture, and bishops regularly

strong control over the production of episcopal charters; in Amiens, the proportion of episcopal acta prepared by the beneficiaries seems higher. 8 See chapter 6 below, pp. 133-134 at notes 51–52. The best analysis, with current bibliography, of the textual, graphic, and linguistic components of diplomatic discourse, is provided by Olivier Guyotjeannin, Jacques Pycke and Benoît-Michel Tock, Diplomatique médiévale (Turnhout, 1993; 3rd rev. ed., 2006; references are to the first edition), pp. 71–102.

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used these signet-rings to impress waxen stampings to close letters, to accredit relics, and to seal vessels containing the chrism and other sacred oils. 9 In fact, bishops had even, on some rare occasions, affixed impressions of their signet-rings as documentary seals on acta produced in synods or councils, and on litterae dimissoriae by which they allowed a priest of their own diocese to leave for another, introducing the migrant cleric to his new bishop.10 The signet-rings used for these purposes were of small diameter, bearing an engraved gem that, whether crafted in ancient or in medieval times, generally bore the depiction of mythical or religious figures. The seal used on eleventhcentury episcopal charters, however, was no longer imprinted from the bishop’s signet-ring but rather from a much enlarged seal matrix which could accommodate a full-fledged physical representation of the bishop in vestments. Significantly, by the time that bishops undertook to seal their charters, royal seals had themselves undergone a similar transformation by which now, much increased in size, they displayed 9 Jean-Luc Chassel, “L’essor du sceau au XIe siècle,” in Pratiques de l’écrit documentaire au XIe siècle, ed. Olivier Guoyotjeannin, Laurent Morelle, and Michel Parisse, Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 155 (1997), pp. 221–234, at pp. 227–230; Pierre C. Barraud, “Des bagues à toutes les époques et en particulier de l’anneau des évêques et des abbés,” Bulletin monumental 30 (1864), pp. 5–74, 353–422, 501–528, 613–670, at pp. 364–386, 643sq.; Maximin Deloche, Etude historique et archéologique sur les anneaux sigillaires et autres des premiers siècles du moyen âge (Paris, 1900), pp. LVIII and passim; M. Deloche, Le port des anneaux dans l’antiquité romaine et dans les premiers siècles du Moyen Age (Paris, 1896) [extr. Mémoires de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres 35/2 (1896)], pp. 64–70. Early episcopal seals may also have had liturgical and funeral functions, Erik Van Mingroot, Les chartes de Gérard Ier, Liébert et Gérard II, évêques de Cambrai et d’Arras, comtes du Cambrésis (1012–1092/93). Introduction, édition, annotation (Leuven, 2005), pp. 182–183. 10 See above at note 3. The littere dimissoriae belong to the category of letters of recommendation (also known as litterae commendaticiae or litterae formatae) granted by bishops to their traveling priests. The most recent work on these letters is by L. Morelle, “Sur les ‘papiers’ du voyageur au haut Moyen Age: lettres de recommandation et lettres dimissoires en faveur des clercs,” in Se Déplacer du Moyen Age à nos jours (forthcoming: Bulletin historique et artistique du Calaisis). I wish to express here my gratitude to Laurent Morelle who generously shared the text of his essay prior to its publication. The only original littera dimissoria (826–834) still extant was issued by Peter, bishop of Lucca and, though lacking a textual clause announcing the apposition of the seal, it bears the traces of an applied wax seal; the letter is studied by Antonio Mastruzzo in “Un’epistola formata di età carolingia nell’Archivio di Stato di Pisa,” Annali della Scuola normale superiore di Pisa, 3e série, 25/4 (1995), pp. 1437–1458, and (with facsimile) in Lettere originali del Medioevo latino (VII–XI sec.). I: Italia, ed. Armando Petrucci, Giulia Ammannati, Antonino Mastruzzo, Ernesto Stagni Mastruzzo (Pisa, 2004), no. 2, pp. 13–19.

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the full bodily figure of a ruler in majesty (from ca. 1031; fig. 16).11 The fulcrum of this newly expanding sealing practice was an object, the seal, whose newly operative format, resemblance, brought to the fore a signifying mode that was expressly predicated upon a congruence between sign and referent. That the seal was conceived as an image when it was systematically affixed, from the late eleventh century onward, to the episcopal charters of Langres, Noyon, Laon, Reims, Cambrai, Beauvais, Soissons, and Therouanne, may be deduced from the fact that final textual clauses within the charters specifically refer to the seal as imago.12 The actualization of personal authority and identity in engraved matter marked a profound change in the conception of the relation between phenomenal appearances and the person represented. By introducing a mimetic economy into the signifying process, wherein the seal shared some of the characteristic features of its referent, the seal as sign marked a radical departure from the semiotic system that previously had governed the rapport between sign and thing.

11 See chapter 4 above. Corpus des sceaux français du Moyen Age. Tome II: Les sceaux des rois et de régence by Martine Dalas (Paris, 1991): the size of French royal seals began to grow with Charles the Bald (d. 877, nos. 24–26, pp. 103–104) but the image remained that of an antique profile. A crowned bust with regalia appeared at the very end of the tenth century on the seal of King Rudolph of Burgundy (d. 1018, no. 59 p. 135), remained on the seals of the two first Capetians, Hugh (d. 997, no. 60, p. 139) and Robert the Pious (d. 1031, no. 61 p. 140), but was replaced by an effigy in majesty when Henry I (d. 1060) had a new seal cut upon his accession to the throne (no. 62, p. 141). 12 See chapter 7 below, at notes 84–87. Patrick Demouy, “Les sceaux des archevêques de Reims des origines à la fin du XIIIe siècle,” in Actes du 109e Congrès national des Sociétés savantes, Dijon, 1984. Section d’histoire médiévale et de philologie. T. I (Paris, 1985), pp. 687–720, at p. 687; Demouy, “Actes des archevêques de Reims d’Arnoul à Renaud II, 997–1139,” pp. 183–184 of the introduction; of the many charters that refer to the archepiscopal seal as imago, see no 103, pp. 294–295, Archbishop Manasses confirms in 1096 the possession of the church of St Georges of Hesdin by the abbey of Anchin, . . . ut autem hoc decretum nostrum posteris inconvulsum permaneat, auctoritate imaginis nostrae testimonioque fidelium corroboravi decrevimus; no. 108, pp. 305–305, Archbishop Manasses confirms in 1097 donations to the abbey of St-Acheul, . . . nos auctoritate metropolitana et sigilli nostri ymagine, personarumque autenticarum signis et testimonio, in eternam quietem corroboramus. A list of early episcopal sealers is given above, chapter 4, p. 90, at note 47.

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chapter five The Debate over Real Presence and the Appearance of Episcopal Seals

The same departure is noticeable in the field of eucharistic theology which simultaneously was preoccupying the very same episcopal milieus responsible for launching the production of sealed charters.13 A consideration of the nature of the eucharistic sign had begun in the ninth century when a monk of Corbie, Paschasius Radbert (d. c. 860), in the earliest theological treatise concerning the eucharist (De corpore et sanguine Domini), asserted that the consecrated bread and wine were the true body and blood of Christ. The eucharist was truth (veritas) because it was, in reality, what it affirmed to be.14 This position was opposed by Ratramnus (d. 868), a fellow monk at Corbie who, in his own De Corpore et Sanguine Domini, allegorized the physical element in the eucharist as the figuration (figura) of a truth which resided elsewhere.15 This debate continued into the next century, taken up by scholars from the bishopric of Liège who tended to support the

13

Caroline W. Bynum has recently expressed concern that “recent work seems to find the eucharist everywhere,” “The Blood of Christ in the Later Middle Ages,” Church History 71 (2002), pp. 685–714, at p. 686. Eucharistic debates, held particularly among North European schoolmen, had a strong semiotic component since the central question revolved around the extent to which the eucharistic sign (sacramentum) remained distinct from its thing (res). As they pondered the relationship between signs and reality, Northern schoolmen tended to favor a solution, later to be adopted at Lateran IV as the doctrine of transubstantiation, that asserted the real and substantial presence of Christ in the eucharist. They also recognized, however, that the eucharist, as the true body of Christ, could in turn signify the spiritual body of Christ or Christian unity; see Gary Macy, The Theologies of the Eucharist in the Early Scholastic Period (Oxford, 1984); Brian Stock , Implications of Literacy. Written Language and Models of Interpretation in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries (Princeton, 1983), pp. 241–315. 14 Paschasius’s eucharistic writings are available in modern editions: Pascasius Radbertus, De corpore et sanguine domini cum appendice epistola ad Fredugardum, ed. Beda Paulus (Turnhout, 1969), and Expositio in Matheo Libri XII, ed. B. Paulus (Turnhout, 1984). See note 15 below for a select bibliography on Carolingian eucharistic debates. 15 Ratramnus’ De Corpore and Sanguine Domini has been edited by Jan N. Bakhuizen Van Den Brink, 2nd ed. (Amsterdam, 1974), and is also available in PL CXXI, cols. 125D–170C. I deal at greater length with the semiotics of the Carolingian eucharistic debates in B. Bedos-Rezak, “Semiotic Anthropology. The Twelfth Century Experiment,” in European Transformations 950–1200, Thomas F.X. Noble and John Van Engen, ed. (Notre Dame, Forthcoming), where I benefited from the studies of Celia Chazelle, The Crucified God in the Carolingian Era (Cambridge, 2001), and C. Chazelle, “Figure, Character, and the Glorified Body in the Carolingian Eucharistic Controversy,” Traditio 47 (1992), pp. 1–35.

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eucharistic physicalism of Paschasius. Heriger of Lobbes (d. 1007), in his De Corpore et Sanguine Domini, was fundamentally a physicalist in his conception of the eucharist. He nevertheless tried to reconcile the two positions by de-emphasizing the relevance for eucharistic doctrine of any distinction between veritas and figura. He argued that, whichever interpretation was attached to the eucharist (which then was treated as figura), its meaning was rooted in the fundamental fact that the bread and wine were the actual body and blood of Christ: interpretation could neither detract from nor alter the veritas of the eucharist.16 Significantly, Heriger of Lobbes was responsible for the production of the earliest sealed episcopal document in Liège, issued on 19 June 980 in the name of Bishop Notger (972–1008).17 This seal, actually the earliest extant non-royal medieval seal, precedes episcopal French seals by three quarters of a century, a gap which corresponds to a pause in the eucharistic debate. The debate resumed in the mid-eleventh century when bishops and their chancery-scholars faced new challenges from Berengar of Tours (d. 1088) and his followers, whose forceful ideas prompted the Northern French schools and chanceries to re-consider the nature of the eucharistic sign. Berengar rejected physicalism. Refusing to admit that which was denied by the evidence of the senses or by simple logic, Berengar insisted that it was bread and wine which remained on the altar even after consecration, that it was interpretation, a process deeper than surface senses, which gave the eucharist its true meaning.18 16 Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 21–25; Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 259–272. 17 The document is published by Jean-Louis Kupper with facsimile, French translation, diplomatic and historical commentaries, and bibliography in Autour de Gerbert d’Aurillac, le pape de l’an mil. Album de documents commentés, réunis sous la direction d’Olivier Guyotjeannin et Emmanuel Poulle (Paris, 1996), no. 44, pp. 300–305. The seal is also discussed and illustrated in René Laurent, Sigillographie (Bruxelles, 1985), no. 210, pp. 39, 69–70, and plate XVII no. 30: of a 50 mm-diameter, Notger’s seal displays the bust of a figure holding a book surrounded by the legend NOTKERUS EP(ISCOPU)S. 18 The eucharistic debate seems to have been part of the confrontation the bishop of Arras had with a group of dissenters at the synod of Arras of 1025; the redaction of the synod’s acta, however, is contemporary with Berengar and the full resumption of the eucharistic controversy, see note 24 below. Good analyses of Berengar’s position are found in Henry Chadwick, “Ego Berengarius,” Journal of Theological Studies 40 (1989), pp. 414–445; H. Chadwick, “Symbol and Reality: Berengar and the Appeal to the Fathers,” Auctoritas und Ratio. Studien zu Berengar von Tours, ed. Peter Ganz, Robert B.C. Huygens and Friedrich Niehwöhner (Wiesbaden, 1990), pp. 25–46; Josef Geiselmann, Die Eucharistielehre der Vorschola-

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Berengar’s rejection of physical symbolism was opposed by Hugh, bishop of Langres, in yet another iteration of De corpore et sanguine Christi, written just before the reforming council held at Reims in 1049, the approximate date at which sealing commenced in Langres.19 At the council of Reims, the convener, Pope Leo IX, complained of many heresies and illicit practices.20 The archbishop of Reims, Guy (d. 1055) stood accused of simony though he was able to clear himself of the charge.21 Guy, who was the first archbishop of Reims to use a seal, had refused to endorse the pro-Berengar letter he received from Eusebius Bruno, bishop of Angers, around 1050;22 it was also during Guy’s tenure that the school of Reims re-emerged from the obscurity into which it had been plunged after the departure of Gerbert of Aurillac (d. 1003). Associated with the resurgence of this school’s fame was master Herimann, who was lauded by his contemporaries specifically as one of the distinguished scholars and men of authority who repudiated the

stik (Paderborn, 1926); Ludwig Hödl, “Die confessio Berengarii von 1059, eine Arbeit zum frühscholastischen Eucharistietraktat,” Scholastik 37 (1962), pp. 370–394; Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 273–287; Allan J. MacDonald, Berengar and the Reform of Sacramental Doctrine (London, 1930; reprint Merrick, NY, 1977); Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 35–43; Jean de Montclos, Lanfranc et Bérenger. La controverse eucharistique du Xie siècle (Louvain, 1971); Toivo J. Holopainen, Dialectic and Theology in the Eleventh Century (Leiden, 1996). 19 Hugh of Langres, Tractatus de corpore et sanguine Christi, PL CXLII, cols. 1325– 1334; Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 282, 287–89; McDonald, Berengar and the Reform, pp. 51–53, 273–277. Jean-Luc Chassel, “L’apparition du sceau dans les actes de la chancellerie de Langres au XIe siècle,” Cahiers Hauts-Marnais 167 (1986), pp. 77–95, dismisses the documents sealed by Hugh of Langres but R.-H. Bautier, “Apparition, diffusion et évolution,” p. 228, maintains the date of ca. 1050 for the appearance of the episcopal seal at Langres. The difficulty when dating the earliest use of seals comes from the fact that seals were initially not textually announced, and since most documents no longer exist as originals but as copies, it is difficult to assess whether they were originally sealed. Additionally, some of the extant originals bear dubious traces of seals that may point to a later sealing. 20 Leo IX knew of Berengar’s teachings but politics precluded his taking a stance against them at Reims where he issued only veiled thrusts, taking action against Berengar only later at the council of Rome (1050), MacDonald, Berengar and the Reform, pp. 55–58. 21 MacDonald, Berengar and the Reform, p. 60. 22 For the unsuccessful attempt by Eusebius Bruno, bishop of Angers, to secure the support of Archbishop Guy in favor of Berengar, and for the letter sent by Eusebius to Guy, see MacDonald, Berengar and the Reform, pp. 65, 84, 90. On the seal of Archbishop Guy, see Demouy, “Les sceaux des archevêques de Reims,” pp. 687, 693; the seal displays a bust in archepiscopal vestments, holding the crozier and an unidentifiable object, surrounded by a fragmentary legend: ARCHI[EPISC] OP[US REME]NS[IS].

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thesis of Berengar of Tours. Contemporary with and then successor to Herimann (d. ca 1075) at Reims was a second famous schoolmaster, Bruno (d. 1101), who also served as archiepiscopal chancellor, and whose scriptural exegesis and theories on the eucharist were to exert great influence on still another episcopal chancellor, Anselm of Laon (d. 1117). Throughout the eleventh century then, the school and the chancery at Reims remained a bastion of orthodoxy supporting the doctrine of real presence, the principle that host and wine were the actual body and blood of the historical Jesus.23 At Cambrai, another anti-Berengar position, that of Bishop Gerard (d. 1051), was recorded in the mid-eleventh century Acta Synodi Atrebatensis, a much revised and expanded version of his confrontation with a group of dissenters at the synod of Arras of 1025. The chapter of the Acta devoted to De corpore et sanguine Domini is a virtual textbook of eucharistic orthodoxy on real presence. Underlying the entire text of the Acta is the idea of sacramental realism, based on the principle that an invisible reality can be meted out in a palpable form. It is noteworthy therefore that the seal of the bishop of Cambrai first appeared in 1057, some fifteen years after the redaction of the Acta, affixed to a charter given by Gerard’s immediate successor, Bishop Liébert.24 Similarly, Guy, bishop of Amiens (d. 1075), presided on 13 July 1058 over the translation of the relics of Paschasius Radbert, 23 John R. Williams, “The Cathedral School of Reims in the Eleventh Century,” Speculum 29 (1954), pp. 661–677, at p. 663 on the emergence of the school of Reims during the pontificate of Archbishop Guy, at p. 664 where “Gozwin, schoolmaster of Mainz, writing around 1065, lauds him [Herimann] as one of the distinguished masters and men of particular authority who refuse to have anything to do with the novelties of Berengar of Tours,” and at p. 669 on the fact that Anselm of Laon “took his theories of the eucharist and of the rights of the devil over mankind from Bruno.” Williams is even willing to speculate (p. 669 note 61) that Anselm of Laon might have been a disciple of Bruno at Reims. J.R. Williams, “The Cathedral School of Reims in the time of Master Alberic, 1118–1136,” Traditio 20 (1964), pp. 93–114. 24 Acta Synodi Atrebatensis in Manicheos, in PL CXLII, cols. 1269B–1312D, at cols. 1278B–1284B for the section devoted to ‘De corpore et snaguinis Domini.’ I follow here Stock’s analysis of Gerard’s positions, The Implications of Literacy, pp. 120–122, 132–133; see note 18 above. On the dating of the Acta, see E. Van Mingroot, “Acta Synodi Atrebatensis (1025): problèmes de critique de provenance,” Studia Gratiana 20 (1976), pp. 201–229. On the episcopal seal of Cambrai, see Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales,” pp. 234–36; Van Mingroot, Chartes, p. 8: the seal belongs to the immediate successor of Gerard, Bishop Liébert, and its appearance on episcopal charters is also contemporary with a new development in the production of episcopal acta, the arrival of a chanceryscholar responsible for output of the bishop’s writing bureau or ‘chancery.’ The first (extant) document given in the name of Bishop Liébert was sealed and included the

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whose earlier views on the eucharist had, as we have seen, contradicted the teaching of Berengar; the first episcopal seal of Amiens, Guy’s, appeared in 1058.25 This chronological outline suggests that the Northern European bishops responsible for initiating the novelty of non-royal documentary sealing, did so while engaged in a strident yet stimulating theological crisis. The resumption of an enquiry into the reality of the eucharist stimulated a heightened semiotic sensitivity. For, in promoting the notion of real presence in the eucharist, bishops and their chancery-scholars had to confront their own current semiotic assumptions, which they, like their predecessors, derived from Augustine.26 Early medieval scholars had operated within his dualistic semiotic doctrine, whereby the sign signaled a thing to which it was external. In this view, signs could not be regarded as sharing characteristics with, or participate in, the reality they signified. With dualism governing the relationship between sign and thing, between image and prototype, how could the eucharistic sign be conceived as actually being Christ’s blood and body. Eucharistic debates, therefore, brought to the fore the notion that the modes whereby signs and images signified their referents might be different and be construed differently, and that these modal differences in turn could affect the sign’s meaning. Thus, the eucharistic controversy fostered a reflection upon presence and representation, and upon the role of covenant and following final clause: “Werinboldus scolasticus scriptsit et recognovit” (Van Mingroot, Charters, no 2.01, pp. 77–81 [March–July 1057]). In the charter whereby he established the abbey of the Holy Sepulcher in specific expansion of a church foundation made by Gerard, Bishop Liébert urged his successors to respect his dispositions and threatens them with divine maledictions that are unusually spiced with eucharistic rhetoric: ‘Quicumque ergo huic coenobio de concessis et concedendis aliquid subripere voluerit et regiae firmitati contraire temptaverit, hic a corpore et sanguine Domini et communione pacis alienus fiat . . . Wrinbaldus cancellarius recensuit. . . . ,’ Van Mingroot, Charters, no. 2.03, pp. 84–91. 25 On the translation of Paschasius’ relics, see Lecoanet, Les actes des évêques d’Amiens, vol. I, p. 13. The appearance of the episcopal seal is discussed in R.-H. Bautier, “Apparition, diffusion et évolution,” p. 228. As with the episcopal seal of Langres, the early evidence for episcopal sealing at Amiens is rendered complicated by the absence of extant original charters (see above at note 19). The chronological correlation I have attempted to establish between the appearance of episcopal sealing and episcopal support for the doctrine of real presence must be seen as fragile given the incomplete nature of the charter evidence. Uncontroversial, however, is the fact that sealing practices emerged from these very episcopal milieus involved in elaborating the semiotics that would underlay the eucharist doctrine of real presence. On the implications of such semiotics for strategies of representation, see below chapter 6. 26 See chapters 6 and 7 below for a full discussion of Augustinian’s sign theories.

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causality, symbolism and incorporation, in the operations of sacramental and other signs.27 The challenge to Berengar’s symbolic interpretation of the eucharist pushed bishops and schoolmen alike to consider that signs could have intrinsic properties, bear a resemblance to or be extensions of their referents.28 These scholars came to accept that images might have a natural connection to things, and that signification was not systematically dependent upon convention. In minimizing the operations of convention in signification, eleventh-century intellectuals endowed representation with a strong modality, that is, an ability to project truth and accuracy. The extent to which seals became effective in representing their owners owed much to the eucharistic controversy, and to related contemporary debates, as I hope to show in the next chapter. Although northern French bishops remained aware that only the eucharistic sign was capable of being fully identical with its referent, they nevertheless retained the thrust of such reasoning when they argued that signs in general represented things by actualizing them through incorporation of, and intrinsic resemblance to, their essential characteristics. As the doctrinal crisis called for substantial affirmations of episcopal authority, bishops launched a new experiment in the signature of personal identity. They abandoned the personal letter for charters, now personified and substantiated by their seals. The projection of episcopal authority henceforth centered on visibility and materiality, and was re-organized around iconic signs (seals) conceived and created to produce a presence which, while not real was nonetheless actual.

27 A fuller analysis of the semiotic culture of schools and chanceries appears here in chapter 6, and in Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak “Medieval Identity: A Sign and a Concept,” The American Historical Review 105/5 (2000), pp. 1489–1533. 28 The immanent semiotics developed from the eleventh century onward also had its source in Augustine, particularly in his sacramental theology, see chapter 6 below, pp. 121–123.

CHAPTER SIX

MEDIEVAL IDENTITY: SUBJECT, OBJECT, AGENCY In the two centuries following the turn of the first millennium, literate individuals in Western Europe rarely if ever resorted to mediated expression, to indirect communication by means of the written word, without expressing some sense of the absence of immediacy, that is, of personal presence. When Bishop Arnulf of Lisieux (d. 1181) could not attend a council in London, he sent a letter “so that the page might take the place of his person and the letter might faithfully bring his voice to life.”1 Slightly earlier, Bernard of Clairvaux (d. 1153) sought to reassure his correspondents about the authenticity and representativeness of two letters to which he was unable to affix his seal. In one letter, he wrote: “I do not have my seal handy, but the reader will recognize the style because I myself have dictated the letter.”2 The other letter states: “May the discursive structure stand for the seal, which I do not have handy.”3 Bernard expects readers to notice his personal presence, however immaterial, within the fabric of the text, through its style and diction. His secretary and biographer, Geoffrey of Clairvaux (or of Auxerre, d. after 1188), emphasized this conflation of person and text by entitling Chapter 8 of his biography: “On St. Bernard’s writings and the image of his soul expressed in them.”4 Bernard’s and Arnulf’s letters reveal two closely related assumptions, that there is a symbiotic relationship between human presence and representation, one in which representation matches real’ presence, and

1

Quoted and translated in John Van Engen, “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries,” Dialektik und Rhetoric im fruheren und hohen Mittelalter, ed. Johannes Fried (Munich, 1997), p. 114. The London council was gathered following the schism of 1160, to judge between the claims of rival popes. 2 Ep. 330; Bernard’s letters are quoted and discussed in Auguste Dumas, “La diplomatique et la forme des actes,” Le Moyen Age 42 (1932), pp. 5–31, at p. 21, note 1. 3 Ep. 339, Dumas, “La diplomatique et la forme des actes,” p. 21, note 1. My admittedly free translation of materies locutionis as “discursive structure” privileges the meaning of locutio as style or manner of speech, and of materies as constituent substance. 4 On Bernard’s relationship to writing and his ability to function through personal charisma, see C. Stephen Jaeger, The Envy of Angels: Cathedral Schools and Social Ideals in Medieval Europe, 950–1200 (Philadelphia, 1994), pp. 272–77.

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second that the written text is an embodiment of its author and articulates a notion of authenticity revolving around authority and identity. Additionally, Bernard indicates that there was equivalence between his discourse and his seal, in that both had the capacity to signify his personality. Written texts, to be sure, were major instruments of the literate elite’s effectiveness as personalities and public figures,5 but so too was the aura of their physical presence. Bernard and Arnulf lived at a time when it was still possible for them to deploy both media—body and text—equally in matters of authority, even though an irreversible movement had already commenced during the eleventh century that was to shift preeminence from personal to textual presence. Bernard, being literate, could both compose and write in Latin; his authorial identity might thus be vested just as well in his discursive style as in his seal. However, what became of such a form of personal identity if it had to be projected through texts that, produced by others in the names of non-literate individuals, necessarily lacked the authoritative imprint of authorial style and presence? The phenomenon I wish to consider in this chapter involves the novel recourse to the written and sealed word by the lay aristocracy of northern France during the eleventh and twelfth centuries. At this time, French nobles were not yet literate; they lacked Latin beyond the modest requirements of liturgy, and as yet neither participated in modes of textual and iconic representation nor controlled the spheres of scribal and iconographic practice. I believe that the process of the French nobility’s acculturation to such modes of representation as the sealed charter commenced in writing bureaus staffed by prescholastic clerics, who were actively involved in discussion on semiotics even as they wrestled with questions in sacramental theology. Eleventh and twelfth-century lay elites came to be the subjects of representation in the explicit sense that, in situations requiring authority and commitment, they evolved from immediately present agents to represented actors. Persons absent in time or place were substituted by seals, which operated as alternates for those who were absent, acting in their place. It is intriguing that personal identity came to be signified just as people began to project their authority and accountability beyond their own actual, empirical presence. It is as if absence 5 Van Engen, “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture,” pp. 107–09, 113–14, discusses as the key characteristic of letters the intention to represent one self to another, to write as if two persons were speaking face to face. See also above chapter 5 at note 6.

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were required for the question of identity even to become conceivable.6 Since seals are evidence, in my opinion, of a more general and unprecedented shift toward mediation, representation, and the formulation of personal identity in the medieval West, questions arise about the conceptual origin, form, signifying modes, and agency of this new medium, the sealed charter. My own method in exploring this matter has been to follow not the principles but the analytical agenda of Peirceian semiotic anthropology, which is critically presented in chapter 3.7 By focusing on seals and on the institutions that produced them, I probe the effect of contemporary medieval theory on this sign’s agency, assuming that seals’ semiotic codes were dependent on a theology and an ontology that fostered their diffusion and interpretation. In this analysis, I do not seek to establish an absolute symmetry between semiotic theory and seal praxis. Rather, I examine how the seal was enabled by and how it encoded a specific set of ideas about signs and semiosis, and show how seal usage and metaphor contributed to contemporary reflection on and development of semiotic thinking.8 I ask what idea of semiosis must have been operative and what the place of ideas within semiosis was that enabled ideas about sign efficacy to create and shape material signs. Lastly, wishing to elucidate the social effects of seals as agents that performed and produced cultural works, I examine the action of seals as an innovative semiotic trope that, both in theory and in social practice, re-figured the categories of person, presence, identity, and authority. I will argue that, in projecting personal distinction, seals acted through a system of identification, designation, and recognition in which representational identity rested on an ontological principle of likeness. The medieval seal was a serial object: seal iconography utilized a limited range of distinctive types, themselves established on the basis of a limited range of stereotyped personae, and the engraved seal-die (matrix) 6 For a complex analysis of the circumstances that permit the conceptualization of identity as a political agent, see Pierre Legendre, Le désir politique de Dieu: Etudes sur le montage de I’Etat et du droit (Paris, 1988), p. 88 sq. 7 Charles Sanders Peirce’s (1839–1914) philosophical analysis of language and cognition constitutes the theoretical foundation of semiotic anthropology, an interpretive methodology developed at the University of Chicago in the mid-1970s. See chapter 3 above. 8 In his essay, “John Duns Scotus, Charles Sanders Peirce, and Chaucer’s Portrayal of the Canterbury Pilgrims,” Speculum 71 (1996), pp. 633–45, James I. Wimsatt argues that Chaucer’s rendering of his pilgrims both as types and as individuals implies that Chaucer’s art conformed to Scholastic realism. My own method is to look not for conformity but for interaction between semiotic systems and semiotic processes.

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itself repeatedly projected its owner’s identity by reproducing identical impressions (Fig. 5). This technology of replication appears to have served as a model for the formation of medieval identity. Seal users thus came to develop an awareness of themselves in relation to an object whose operational principles as a sign were categorization, replication, and verification. As the elites who used seals came to depend on representation by signs, the concepts of both social and personal identity came also to be formulated in relation to such signs. This is not to say that such representation and such concepts were completely congruous with any definition of the self-as-an-individual as might then have existed, or that the notions of individuality and subjectivity were primarily generated by, or a construct subject to, cultural codes.9 I am not addressing here the entire postmillennial experience of selfhood or personhood, but I am exploring a new experiment in signing and signifying both person and personal identity within northern French culture and society. In modern Western societies, while the term “identity” refers generally to those characteristics used to identify, define, and distinguish persons so that they can be individually recognized, it is also acknowledged that these characteristics as well as the very notions of identity and individuality may vary with time, place, and culture. In the medieval lexicon, the concept of identity did not address individual personality. Rather, identity in the eleventh and twelfth centuries centered on a logic of sameness and operated by assuming a model of similarity, referring to human beings as members of an identical species, or to

9 The term “individual” is used throughout this chapter in the neutral sense of a “single entity which is the subject of cognition in various modes”; Catherine McCall, Concepts of Person: An Analysis of Concepts of Person, Self and Human Being (Aldershot, 1990), p. 12. My argument concerning notions of individuality reopens, on a minor key, a topic eloquently discussed by Colin M. Morris in his classic The Discovery of the Individual, 1050–1200 (London, 1972), and ably pursued by John Benton, “Consciousness of Self and Perceptions of Individuality,” in Renaissance and Renewal in the Twelfth Century, ed. Robert L. Benson and Giles Constable (Cambridge, 1982), pp. 263–295. For a challenge to some of Morris’s claims, see Caroline Walker Bynum, “Did the Twelfth Century Discover the Individual,” in Jesus as Mother: Studies in the Spirituality of the High Middle Ages (Berkeley, 1982), pp. 82–109, who also gives a full review of the question and of its bibliography; and Timothy J. Reiss, The Discourse of Modernism (Ithaca, 1982), pp. 86–89. See John J. Martin, “Inventing Sincerity, Refashioning Prudence: The Discovery of the Individual in Renaissance Europe,” American Historical Review 102 (December 1997), pp. 1309–1342, and J. Martin, Myths of Renaissance Individualism (New York, 2004), for a new reading of Renaissance individualism. Handbook of Personality: Theory and Research, ed. Lawrence A. Pervin (New York, 1990), pp. 143–145, gives anthropological and psychological approaches to the formation of social and personal identity that are intriguing even if not directly relevant for medieval society.

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the person as a psychosomatic whole, a social agent identical to itself with respect to number, essence, or properties. Since that particular sign, the seal, which accompanied, indeed articulated, the assertion of personal identity, participated in this same logic, conceptions of the sign and the human subject appear to be closely related. Indeed, they both operated on the basis of a newly elaborated premise of a dialogic connection between semiotics, theology, ontology, and anthropology. A Network of Schools and Chanceries Concern about mediation, signification, and representation pervaded the eleventh century. The whole of Western Europe was then agitated by the Investiture Controversy, a dramatic conflict between church and state in which the pope struggled with the German emperor to establish absolute ecclesiastical control over the appointment of church officials. Less emphasized in traditional historiography but central to this conflict were questions surrounding the effectiveness of certain signs, particularly material objects. The papal party believed that the symbols of ecclesiastical office, the ring and the crozier, possessed no intrinsic capacity to cause any effect but that the valid possession and application of them effectively and irrevocably established an ecclesiastic’s right to both office and its associated power. The underlying sign theory thus held that material symbols were ordinary objects whose significance derived from a value ascribed to them by common agreement, by their recognized use in a particular ceremony. At stake here was the very nature of the operation of signs, the belief that their efficacy might be based on a contract or covenant and need not depend on any value inhering in the sign-object used. After a century of heated discussions about this semiotic issue, Thomas Aquinas (d. 1274) was to propose a reversal of this position, arguing that signs were effective on the basis of inherent or infused virtue.10 In eleventh-century northern France, however, the semiotic debate extended beyond a consideration of the efficacy of the signs of ecclesiastical investiture. The signifying modes at work in language, in writing,

10 See a lucid discussion of this controversy in William J. Courtenay, “Sacrament, Symbol, and Causality in Bernard of Clairvaux,” Bernard of Clairvaux: Studies Presented to Dom Jean Leclercq (Kalamazoo, 1973), pp. 111–122; and Courtenay, “The King and the Leaden Coin: The Economic Background of ‘Sine qua non’ Causality,” Traditio 28 (1972), pp. 185–209; both essays are reprinted in Covenant and Causality in Medieval Thought: Studies in Philosophy, Theology, and Economic Practice (London, 1984), nos. II and VI.

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and in such fundamental signs of divine revelation as the sacraments, the incarnation, and the Trinity came under intense scrutiny.11 The

11

The shift from transcendence toward immanence that characterized the understanding of sign operation between the Investiture Controversy and Thomas Aquinas seems also to have animated a broader semiotic reflection, which, in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, focused particularly on linguistics, sacramental theology, and authority and authenticity in scriptural and documentary writings. The bibliography on each of these areas is abundant and is here cited only selectively; see below at n. 42 for references on image and representation in prescholastic thought. On medieval signs in general, see Marie-Dominique Chenu, “The Symbolist Mentality,” in M.-D. Chenu, Nature, Man, and Society in the Twelfth Century: Essays on New Theological Perspectives in the Latin West (Chicago, 1968), pp. 99–161; Umberto Eco, Semiotics and the Philosophy of Language (Bloomington, 1984); Alfonso Maierù, “ ‘Signum’ dans la culture médiévale,” Miscellanea Mediaevalia 13 (1981), pp. 51–72; Eugene Vance, Mervelous Signals: Poetics and Sign Theory in the Middle Ages (Lincoln, 1986). On theories of verbal signification between Augustine and Dante, see Marcia L. Colish, The Mirror of Language: A Study in the Medieval Theory of Knowledge (Lincoln, 1983). On medieval semiotics, see On the Medieval Theory of Signs, ed. Umberto Eco and Costantino Marmo (Amsterdam, 1989). On the postmillennial questioning of intellectual attitudes forged in Late Antiquity, see Constant J. Mews, “Philosophy and Theology 1100–1150: The Search for Harmony,” in Le XIIe siècle: Mutations et renouveau en France dans la première moitié du XIIe siècle, ed. Françoise Gasparri (Paris, 1994), pp. 159–203, reprinted in Reason and Belief in the Age of Roscelin and Abelard (Ashgate, 2002), no. II. On the growing centrality of written language, the rise of empiricism, and the transformation of symbolic agency, see C.J. Mews, “Orality, Literacy, and Authority in Twelfth-Century Schools,” Exemplaria 2 (1990), pp. 475–500, reprinted in Reason and Belief, no. I; C.S. Jaeger, “Charismatic Body, Charismatic Text,” Exemplaria 9 (1997), pp. 117–137; Brian Stock, The Implications of Literacy: Written Language and Models of Interpretation in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries (Princeton, 1983). For an alternate view, see Rosamund McKitterick, The Carolingians and the Written Word (Cambridge, 1987) and below at note 54. Closer to Stock in approaching the issue of literacy from the viewpoint of textuality is Martin Irvine, The Making of Textual Culture: “Grammatica” and Literary Theory, 350–1100 (Cambridge, 1994). Both Stock and Irvine show the extent to which, in a given society, the performance of literacy is bound up with theories of authority, knowledge, and signification. Brian V. Street, Literacy in Theory and Practice (Cambridge, 1984), pp. 19–125, gives an overview of various theories on the interpretation of literacy, including Jack Goody’s. No study explores systematically the dialectics of scriptural authority and documentary authenticity (see above, p. 57, and below at notes 49 and 79, and chapter 7, at notes 106–106), although I discuss some aspects in Brigitte Bedos-Rezak, “Les juifs et l’écrit dans la mentalité eschatologique du Moyen Age Chrétien occidental (France 1000–1200),” Annales: Histoire, Sciences Sociales 5 (1994), pp. 1049–1063. Michael T. Clanchy’s From Memory to Written Record, England 1066–1307, 2nd ed. (Oxford, 1993), esp. pp. 253–317, though primarily based on English records, provides an insightful analysis of the growth of literate practice that has helped reconceptualize the study of continental practical literacy. Synthetic treatments of authority and authenticity, particularly with respect to legal and documentary practices, include chapter 1 here, and B. Bedos-Rezak, The Efficacy of Signs and the Matter of Authenticity in Canon Law (800–1250),” forthcoming in Zwischen Pragmatik und Performanz. Dimensionen mittelalterlicher Schriftkultur, ed. Christoph Dartmann, Thomas Scharff, and Christoph Weber (Turnhout, 2010); M.-D. Chenu, “Auctor, Actor, Autor,” Bulletin du

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literate elites involved in this inquiry were prescholastic churchmen who were active both in ecclesiastical schools, where they taught and directed doctrinal debates,12 and in chanceries, where they supervised Cange 3 (1927), pp. 81–86, and “Authentica et magistralia,” Divus Thomas 28 (1925), pp. 257–285; Frederic Cheyette, “The Invention of the State,” in Essays in Medieval Civilization: The Walter Prescott Webb Memorial Lectures, ed. Bede Karl Lackner and Kenneth Roy Phillip (Austin, 1979); Auguste Dumas, “La diplomatique et la forme des actes,” Le Moyen Age 42 (1932), pp. 5–31, and “Etude sur le classement des formes des actes,” Le Moyen Age 43 (1933), pp. 81–264, and 44 (1934), pp. 17–41; Bernard Guenée, “Authentique et approuvé: Recherches sur les principes de la critique historique au Moyen Age,” in La lexicographic du latin médiéval et ses rapports avec les recherches actuelles sur la civilisation du Moyen Age: Colloques intemationaux du C.N.R.S., 589 (Paris, 1981), pp. 215–229, reprinted in Guenée, Politique et histoire au Moyen Age (Paris, 1981), pp. 265–278; Jan Ziolkowski, “Cultures of Authority in the Long Twelfth Century,” Journal of English and Germanic Philology (JEGP), 108 (2009), pp. 421–448, at pp. 429–430 ; Jean-Philippe Lévy, “Coup d’œil d’ensemble sur L’histoire de la preuve littérale,” in Hommages à G. Boulvert. Index, Quaderni camerti di studi romanistici, international survey of Roman law 15 (1987), pp. 473–502; La Preuve. Recueil de la Société Jean Bodin, vol. 17 (Brussels, 1965). On postmillennial debates surrounding sacramental theology, I am indebted to Courtenay, “Sacrament, Symbol, and Causality in Bernard of Clairvaux,” and “The King and the Leaden Coin: The Economic Background of ‘Sine qua non’ Causality;” Henri de Lubac, Corpus mysticum: L’eucharistie et l’église au Moyen Age, étude historique (Paris, 1949); Gary Macy, The Theologies of the Eucharist in the Early Scholastic Age (Oxford, 1984); Irène Rosier, “Signe et Sacrement,” Revue des sciences philosophiques et theologiques 74 (1990), pp. 392–436; I. Rosier-Catach, La parole efficace. Signe, ritual, sacré (Paris, 2004); Stock, Social Implications of Literacy, pp. 241–325; Damien van den Eynde, Les definitions des sacrements pendant la première période de la théologie scholastique (1050–1240) (Rome, 1950). 12 Prescholastics were theologians whose intellectual efforts at unfolding problems in patristic thought were still traditionally inspired by faith and embedded within a comprehensive philosophy of man’s physical and spiritual power. They, however, treated a universal range of subjects in a detailed, abstract, and systematic way, which contributed to the newer scholastic understanding of faith, an understanding that had lost its previous broader psychological setting. Studies on the activities of various types of ecclesiastical schools include Emile Lesne, Les écoles de la fin du VIIIe siècle à la fin du XIIe siècle, Vol. 5: Histoire de la propriété ecclésiastique en France (Lille, 1940); Pierre Riché, Les écoles et I’enseignement dans I’occident chrétien de la fin du Ve siècle au milieu du XV siècle (Paris, 1979); Jacques Verger, “Une étape dans le renouveau scolaire du XIIe siècle,” in Le XIIe siècle: Mutations et renouveau en France, pp. 123–145; Jean Leclercq, The Love of Learning and the Desire of God: A Study of Monastic Culture (New York, 1962); Louis Carolus-Barré, “Les écoles capitulaires et les collèges de Soissons au Moyen Age et au XVIe siècle,” in Actes du 95e Congrès des sociétés savantes (Reims, 1970), Vol. 1: Enseignement et vie intellectuelle (IXe–XVIe siècles) (Paris, 1975), pp. 123–126; Marcia Colish, “Another Look at the School of Laon,” Archives d’histoire doctrinale et littéraire du Moyen Age 53 (1986), pp. 7–22; Valerie Flint, “The ‘School of Laon’: A Reconsideration,” Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 43 (1976), pp. 89–110, reprinted in Flint, Ideas in the Medieval West: Texts and Their Contexts (London, 1988), no. I, pp. 89–110; Nikolaus M. Häring, Life and Works of Clarembald of Arras, a Twelfth-Century Master of the School of Chartres (Toronto, 1965); Jaeger, Envy of Angels and “Cathedral Schools and Humanist Learning, 950–1150,” Deutsche Vierteljahrsschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Geistesgeschichte 61 (1987), pp. 569–616;

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the production of written documents.13 As already mentioned in chapter 5, school and chancery shared not only the same location but,

Odon Lottin, Psychologie et morale aux XIIe–XIIIe siècles (Louvain-Gembloux, 1942– 1960), Vol. 5: Problèmes d histoire littéraire, l’école d’Anselme de Laon et de Guillaume de Champeaux (Gembloux, 1959); Léon A. Maître, Les écoles épiscopales et monastiques en Occident avant les universités, 2nd ed. (Ligugé, 1924). Bernard Merlette, “Ecoles et bibliothèques à Laon, du déclin de l’antiquité au développement de l’université,” in Actes du 95e Congrès des sociétés savantes (Reims, 1970), Vol. 1: Enseignement et vie intellectuelle (IXe–XVIe siècles) (Paris, 1975), pp. 21–54; Eugène Michaud, Guillaume de Champeaux et les écoles de Paris au XIIe siècle (Paris, 1867); Richard W. Southern, Scholastic Humanism and the Unification of Europe, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1995–2001); and “The Schools of Paris and Chartres,” in Renaissance and Renewal in the Twelfth Century, pp. 113–37; John Van Engen, Rupert of Deutz (Berkeley, 1983); John R. Williams, “The Cathedral School of Reims in the Eleventh Century,” Speculum 29 (1954), pp. 661–677; and “The Cathedral School of Reims in the Time of Master Alberic, 1118–1136,” Traditio 20 (1964), pp. 93–114. Much work has been devoted to the School of St. Victor, of which the most relevant publications for this study are Fourier Bonnard, Histoire de l’abbaye royale et de l’ordre des chanoines réguliers de St.-Victor de Paris, 2 vols. (Paris, 1904–1907); Jean Châtillon, “Les écoles de Chartres et de Saint-Victor,” in La Scuola nell’occidente latino dell’alto medioevo, 2 vols. (Spoleto, 1972), vol. 2, pp. 795–840, and “De Guillaume de Champeaux a Thomas Gallus: Chronique d’histoire littéraire et doctrinale de l’Ecole de Saint-Victor,” Revue du Moyen Age latin 8 (1952), pp. 139–162, 247–272; Jaeger, Envy of Angels, pp. 244–268; L’abbaye parisienne de Saint-Victor au Moyen Age, ed. Jean Longère (Paris-Turnhout, 1991); Beryl Smalley, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, 2nd ed. (Notre Dame, 1970); Patrice Sicard, Hughes de Saint-Victor et son école (Turnhout, 1991). 13 The world of postmillennial chanceries, particularly as it intersects with prescholasticism, has so far received scant attention, see Robert-Henri Bautier, “Chancellerie et culture au Moyen Age,” in Cancelleria e cultura nel Medio Evo: Communicazioni presentate nelle giornate di studio delta Commissione internazionale di diplomatica, Stoccarda, 1985, ed. Germano Gualdo (Citta del Vaticano, 1990), pp. 1–75, esp. pp. 8–9 for the French situation, reprinted in R.-H. Bautier, Chartes, sceaux et chancelleries: Etudes de diplomatique et de sigillographie médiévales, 2 vols. (Paris, 1990), vol. 1, pp. 47–121, esp. pp. 54–55; Ghislain Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries episcopales du Nord de la France au XIe siècle,” in A propos des actes d’évêques: Hommage à Lucie Fossier, ed. Michel Parisse (Nancy, 1991), pp. 227–244, esp. pp. 238–242; Françoise Gasparri, “Scriptorium et bureau d’écriture de l’abbaye de Saint-Victor de Paris,” in L’abbaye parisienne de Saint-Victor, pp. 119–139; Gasparri, “La chancellerie du roi Louis VII et ses rapports avec le scriptorium de l’abbaye de Saint-Victor de Paris,” in Palaeographica diplomatica et archivistica: Studi in onore di Giulio Batelli (Rome, 1979), pp. 151–158. In his “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture,” Van Engen stresses the relationships between theory acquired in school and practice employed in administrative courts (p. 105), and between instruction in rhetoric and work in chanceries (pp. 109, 123–24, 126–27, 131), concluding that, after 1200, the sites and institutions of schooling became further removed from administrative loci (p. 131). Bernard Guenée focuses on the historiographical role of chanceries in “Chancelleries et monastères,” in Les lieux de la mémoire, Vol. 2: La nation, ed. Pierre Nora (Paris, 1986), pp. 5–30. Monographs bearing on specific chanceries tend to address the method and scope of documentary production. See Benoît-Michel Tock, Une chancellerie épiscopale au XIIe siècle: Le cas d’Arras (Louvain, 1991); and Tock, Les chartes des évêques d’Arras (1093–1203) (Paris, 1991).

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significantly, the same staff, which I have dubbed chancery-scholars.14 In many cases, the theologically engaged scholars were themselves chancellors specifically in charge of the writing bureaus that produced charters, or else they were bishops or abbots responsible for the written output produced in their names.15 A complex skein of filiation, 14 Studies devoted to the chancellors and staffs of postmillennial chanceries indicate that the chancellor was often the head of the school as well: Fasti ecclesiae gallicanae: Répertoire proso-pographique des évêques, dignitaires et chanoines de France de 1200 a 1500, Vol. 1: Diocèse d’Amiens, by Pierre Desportes and Hélène Millet (Turnhout, 1996); Dom Nicolas Huyghebaert, “Recherches sur les chanceliers des évêques de Noyon-Tournai,” Annales de la fédération historique et archéologique de Belgique, 35e congrès, juillet 1953, fasc. 5 (Courtrai, 1955), pp. 665–680; John R. Williams, “Godfrey of Reims: A Humanist of the Eleventh Century,” Speculum 22 (1947), pp. 29–45; Erik Van Mingroot, Les chartes de Gérard Ier, Liébert et Gérard II, évêques de Cambrai et d’Arras, comtes du Cambrésis (1012–1092/93). Introduction, édition, annotation (Leuven, 2005), pp. 12–15. On the careers of eleventh-century northern French chancellors, see the pioneering contribution by Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France,” pp. 238–242; Patrick Demouy, Actes des archevêques de Reims d’ Arnoul à Renaud II, 957–1139, Thèse pour le doctorat de IIIe cycle en histoire (Nancy, 1982), pp. 210–212; Georges Lacombe, La vie et les œuvres de Prévostin (Le Saulchoir, 1927), pp. 36–46; William Mendel Newman, Le personnel de la cathédrale d’Amiens, 1066–1306 (Paris, 1972), pp. 5–13; Jacques Pycke, Le chapitre cathédral Notre-Dame de Tournai de la fin du XIe à la fin du XIIIe siècle (Louvain-la-Neuve, 1986), p. 169. On the career of Berengar of Tours at the cathedral chapter of SaintMartin of Tours, where he served as grammaticus, scholasticus, and chancellor, see Allan J. Macdonald, Berengar and the Reform of Sacramental Doctrine (London, 1930; reprint, Merrick, 1977), p. 38. Berengar also performed scribal functions for Count Fulk Nerra of Anjou: Margaret Gibson, “Letters and Charters Relating to Berengar of Tours,” in Auctoritas und Ratio: Studien zu Berengar von Tours, ed. P. Ganz, et al. (Wiesbaden, 1990), pp. 5–23, especially p. 8, reprinted. in “Artes” and Bible in the Medieval West (London, 1993), XVIII. The comital document in which Berengar had a hand is catalogued and discussed in Olivier Guillot, Le comte d’Anjou et son entourage au XIe siècle, 2 vols. (Paris, 1972), vol. 2, pp. 65–66, no. C 77 (1039). Concerned with a period slightly after that under consideration here, John Baldwin shows that those who were employed as regent masters at Paris often achieved high positions in the church including that of chancellor: “Masters at Paris from 1179 to 1215, A Social Perspective,” in Renaissance and Renewal in the Twelfth Century, pp. 138–172. 15 The network of chancery-scholars sketched here and in chapter 5 (see in particular notes 23 and 24) could be further expanded. This would require the reading of numerous charters so as to establish the itineraries of highly mobile scholars whose intellectual journeys have been abundantly researched but whose services to writing bureaus have remained virtually unexplored. Also, not surprisingly, little is known of the staff of early chanceries: Brunel’ essay on the subject, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France,” and Demouy’s research on the Actes des archevêques de Reims show the symbiosis between eleventh-century schools and chanceries and that scribes were recruited from the schools. Scholarly contacts and schools of thought are sketched in studies quoted above at notes 12 and 14, and also in Robert Javelet, Image et ressemblance au XIIe siècle, de saint Anselme à Alain de Lille, 2 vols. (Paris, 1967), vol. 1, pp. xv–xviii. A current bibliography on the masters discussed below is available in Dictionnaire des lettres françaises: Le Moyen Age (Paris, 1992).

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apprenticeships and training, associations, preferments, and marginalizations bound such scholars together over time and considerable distances. Archbishop Lanfranc of Canterbury (d. 1089), for example, was closely associated with Berengar of Tours (d. 1088) in the Loire Valley before settling in Normandy as master of the cathedral school at Avranches, founding master of the school at the abbey of Bec, and abbot of St. Etienne de Caen.16 At Bec, Lanfranc trained both his successor, Anselm of Canterbury (d. 1109), and Ivo of Chartres (d. 1115), who became abbot of a community of Augustinian canons near Beauvais before receiving the bishopric of Chartres.17 Anselm of Laon (d. 1117), who had been Anselm of Canterbury’s student at Bec, became chancellor to the bishop of Laon, while gathering around him, in turn, such students as his brother Ralph (later to succeed him as chancellor, d. 1133), Peter Abelard (d. 1142), William of Champeaux (d. 1121), Alberic of Reims (later archbishop of Bourges, d. 1141), and Gilbert of Poitiers (head of the Porretain school, chancellor at Chartres, and later bishop of Poitiers, d. 1154). William of Champeaux, at the time of his death in 1121 the bishop of Châlons, had been master in the cathedral school of Paris before founding the abbey of St. Victor in Paris.18 At the beginning of its existence, this abbey functioned as a virtual chancery for the production of royal diplomas while also evolving as a major doctrinal and spiritual center under the aegis of Hugh of St. Victor (d. 1141).19 A great admirer of the Victorines, the theologian Praepositanus of Cremona, who in his later years (1206–1210) became chancellor of the cathedral and university of Paris, is worth mention in this context, since homiletic materials he derived from his

16 Jean de Montclos, Lanfranc et Béranger. La controverse eucharistique du XIe siècle (Louvain, 1971); Lanfranc became a leader of the opposition against Berengar’s views on the eucharist. 17 With Ivo of Chartres’s episcopacy (1090–1115), the golden age of intellectual activity at Chartres commenced, particularly enhanced by three chancellors: Bernard of Chartres, Gilbert (later bishop of Poitiers), and Thierry of Chartres. The existence of the School of Chartres has been questioned by Richard Southern, Scholastic Humanism and the Unification of Europe. Vol. 1: Foundations (Oxford, 1995), pp. 58–101, where the author presents his argument and replies to his critics ; see a summary of the debate in Michel Lemoine and Clotilde Picard-Parra, L’École de Chartres. Théologie et cosmologie au XIIe siècle (Paris, 2004), pp. xi–xiii. 18 William had also been the student of Roscelin; Jean Jolivet, “Données sur Guillaume de Champeaux dialecticien et théologien,” in L’abbaye parisienne de Saint-Victor, pp. 235–252. 19 Gasparri, “La chancellerie du roi Louis VII.” See additional bibliography on the School of St. Victor above at n. 12.

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documentary and sealing functions on behalf of the bishop of Paris are the earliest of this genre to survive.20 Gilbert of Poitiers (d. 1154) became chancellor of Chartres, succeeding Bernard of Chartres, whose student he had also been.21 There was a break in scholarly activity after Gerbert d’Aurillac’s tenure (later Pope Sylvester II, d. 1003) at Reims, but the school reemerged from obscurity with master Herimann (d. ca. 1075) and his disciple Bruno (d. 1101), ultimately producing the controversial logician Roscelin of Compiègne (d. ca. 1125). Bruno also served as chancellor to the archbishop of Reims, before himself founding the Grande Chartreuse, the mother house of the monastic Carthusian Order. Following the chancellorship of the learned humanist Godfrey (d. 1094), Alberic (d. 1141), who had trained under Anselm at Laon, became head of the cathedral school at Reims in 1094.22 Boulogne, Arras, Cambrai, Amiens, Beauvais, Soissons, Senlis, and Rouen all had chancellors and bishops who were scholars, although many schools and their masters remain to be studied in detail.23 The map 20 I wish to thank Professor John Baldwin and Jean-Baptiste Lebigue for bringing to my attention this extraordinary sermon in which Praepositanus weaves together theology and sigillography. I am particularly grateful that Lebigue, who recently (1999) defended his dissertation at the Ecole nationale des Chartes (Paris) on Praepositanus’s sermons, which he has edited for this purpose, kindly sent me the sermon’s two extant versions, respectively in Munich (Clm. 14126, f°2 r°a), and Paris (Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Lat. 14,804, f° 108v°b); J.-B. Lebigue, “La prédication de Prévôtin de Crémone,” Positions des thèses soutenues par les élèves de la promotion de 1999 pour obtenir le diplôme d’archiviste paléographe (1999), pp. 265–268 . There is a brief comment on the sermon by Lacombe in La vie et les oeuvres de Prévostin, pp. 38–39, who also gives the sermon’s incipit (p. 186, no. 21) and textual variations between the two versions (p. 191). In addition to such explicit application of seal usages to theology, Praepositanus made ample use of the seal metaphor when discussing the creation of man in God’s image in Summa super Psalterium and Summa Theologica: Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 164, 178, 218, 221, 224–225, 260; 2:134,142,150,189,192,195,197, 221; Lacombe, La vie et les oeuvres, p. 109. 21 John of Salisbury was Gilbert’s student. Gilbert was challenged for his teaching on the Trinity, though not condemned despite Bernard of Clairvaux’s efforts toward this end. 22 Herimann rejected the position of Berengar of Tours on the eucharist (see chapter 5 above, at note 23): Williams, “Cathedral School of Reims in the Eleventh Century,” 664–65; Williams, “Cathedral School of Reims in the Time of Master Alberic, 1118–36;” Williams, “Godfrey of Rheims, a Humanist of the Eleventh Century;” Lambert M. De Rijk, “Some New Evidence on Twelfth-Century Logic: Alberic and the School of Mont Ste Geneviève (Montani),” Vivarium 6 (1966), pp. 1–57. Alberic, and another student of Anselm of Laon who was master with him at Reims, Lotulf of Novara, fiercely opposed Abelard’s teachings on the Trinity. 23 Lesne, Les écoles; Southern, Scholastic Humanism; Brunel, “Chartes et chancelleries épiscopales du Nord de la France,” insisting on the actual participation of both chancellors and bishops in documentary production (pp. 240–241), discusses the

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thus established of cathedral schools should be extended to include monastic establishments, for there was a fluid exchange of individuals and ideas between these two institutional worlds. Reform-minded bishops or their chancellors often founded or reorganized local abbeys; masters of schools not infrequently returned to cloisters (Bruno, William of Champeaux); indeed, some scholars produced most of their work in a monastic environment (Lanfranc and Anselm of Bec). What was novel about these chancery-scholars and deserves our attention is the heightened semiotic sensitivity of their theological debates, their pronounced tendency to ponder the issue of presence and representation. Two of their constructs were unprecedented in the medieval West. First, they came to recognize presence and representation as essential to the structure governing the generation of identity, conceiving identity as dependent on sameness but necessarily involving interactions between the similar and the dissimilar. The identity they contemplated concerned both divine and human persons and sparked discussions on the very nature of personhood. Second, they objectified identity by using a new material sign: the seal. Thus the definition of identity that emerged in the eleventh century derived from specific concerns initially directed, later redirected, by the articulation of this definition within a theory of signs. In order to understand both the concept and the sign of identity, and their agency, it will be necessary to examine the domains that concerned chanceryscholars and led them to innovations in thought and social praxis. These domains included the relationships between language and reality, between the eucharist and real presence, between the Trinity and the related subjects of person, image, and resemblance, and between writing and authority. Such issues were hardly new in the Christian culture of the West, but in their treatment as a set of related concerns they indicate a crisis in the dominant signifying system.

chancery-scholars of Soissons and Cambrai. In Cambrai, the schoolman Werimboldus explicitly recorded his role in the composition of episcopal charters: “Werimboldus scolasticus scripsit et recognovit” (1057), “S. Werinboldi arciscoli . . . qui hanc kartam composuit” (1089), quoted by Brunel, p. 242. On Arras, see Häring, Life and Works of Clarembald of Arras; Tock, Une chancellerie épiscopale au XIIe siècle, pp. 189–191.

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The Augustinian Paradox and its Role in Scholarly Controversy Discussions of linguistics pursued by prescholastics in wrestling with questions of sacramental theology involved a renewed study of the fundamental corpus of semio-linguistic theory that had been provided earlier by St. Augustine (d. 430).24 A resulting interpretive shift in the understanding of Augustinian theory brought an awareness of what may be termed the Augustinian paradox. Augustine’s semiotics, presented in Book 2 of De Doctrina Christiana, are a confusing tangle of claims and doubts.25 Early church doctrine seems to have privileged the classical dualism between the sign and the thing referred to by the sign, whereby only the thing, though ideal and not of this world, has reality; the dualistic Augustine emphasized the lack of congruence between signifier (indicator) and signified (that which is indicated), privileging eternal ideal objects of reference over signs, and he deplored linguistic multiplicity and semantic obscurity as a condition of the Fall. Augustine recognized two classes of signs, signa naturalia, or natural signs, which he conceived as having a necessary and causal relationship with their referents (for example, “where there’s smoke, there’s fire”), and signa data, or given conventional signs (language, clothing, money), which signify by virtue of their givers’ essentially

24 Of the large bibliography available on Augustinian sign theory, the following were particularly helpful: Clifford Ando, “Augustine on Language,” Revue des études augustiniennes 40 (1994), pp. 45–78; Colish, Mirror of Language, pp. 7–54; De Doctrina Christiana: A Classic of Western Culture, ed. Duane W.H. Arnold and Pamela Bright (Notre Dame, 1995); Stéphane Dorothée, “Signum et le métalexique: la notion de signe linguistique chez saint Augustin,” in Latin et langues techniques (Paris, 2006), pp. 155–168; J. Engels, “La doctrine du signe chez Saint Augustin,” Studia Patristica 6 (1962), pp. 366–373; B. Darrell Jackson, “The Theory of Signs in St. Augustine’s De Doctrina Christiana,” Revue des études augustiniennes 15 (1969), pp. 9–49; Maierù, “‘Signum’ dans la culture médiévale,” pp. 55–57; Giovanni Manetti, Theories of the Sign in Classical Antiquity (Bloomington, 1993), pp. 157–168; Robert A. Markus, “St. Augustine on Signs,” Phronesis 2 (1957), pp. 60–83; and “‘Imago’ and ‘similitudo’ in Augustine,” Revue des études augustiniennes 10 ( 1964), pp. 125–143, both reprinted in Sacred and Secular. Studies on Augustine and Latin Christianity (Aldershot, 1994), nos. XIV, XVII. 25 This apt expression is by Thomas S. Maloney, “Is the Doctrina the Source for Bacon’s Semiotics,” in Reading and Wisdom: The “De Doctrina Christiana” of Augustine in the Middle Ages, ed. Edward D. English (Notre Dame, 1995), pp. 126–142, at p. 133. See a discussion of instances where Augustine’s reasoning undermines his own distinction between signs and things in Eileen C. Sweeney, “Hugh of St. Victor: The Augustinian Tradition of Sacred and Secular Reading Revised,” in Reading and Wisdom, pp. 61–83, at p. 73. An edition and translation of the De Doctrina is available: Augustine, De Doctrina Christiana, ed. and trans. R.P.H. Green, (Oxford, 1995).

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arbitrary intentions.26 He seems never to have considered the possibility that conventional signs may function more like natural signs, because he did not believe that causal dependence or logical implications between signs and referents were possible models for language and culture.27 In Augustine’s dualistic and idealistic theory, human language is an external imitation of a transcendental reality, lacking its necessarily ideal referent or object and thus fundamentally unable to express God’s essence, God’s identity as the perfection of selfreference. Understanding language as a form of alienation, since only God is Logos—the unique extra-semiotic guarantor of the adequacy of signs who resists capture by referential language—Augustine effectively deprived human knowledge of the possibility of stable notions and impeded the reification of human understanding. Yet Augustine also wished to bridge the abyss between sign and thing that he himself had so effectively excavated, and this presented a paradox. The Augustinian solution for connecting word and thing, for circumventing the deferral and mediation inherent in text and language, is communion with pure presence, that is, incarnation. As God incarnate, the word-become-flesh, Christ bridges the gap between signifier and signified, for in Augustine’s doctrine (as in the later dogma) of the incarnation and the eucharist, substance and its representation are one and the same. In this view, “the word of God [the Logos] suffered no change although it became flesh in order to live in us.”28 Sacraments in this construction are different from other signs; they actualize the presence of that to which words merely point. In Augustinian theology, the incarnation of the Logos became a model that, while still limiting linguistic expression, promoted sacramental signification through presence.29 Thus, although Augustine reiterated the Platonic idea of a schism between sign and thing, he also left a semiotic legacy of reification, an escape from the mere referentiality of signs, a locus for unmediated presence. Worth noting here is the transition from signification

26 The two kinds of signs are distinguished in Augustine, De Doctrina Christiana, 2.1.2, 2.2.3, Green, pp. 56–59; Maierù, “ ‘Signum’ dans la culture médiévale,” pp. 55–57. 27 Sweeney, “Hugh of St. Victor,” p. 65; R.A. Markus, “Signs, Communication, and Communities in Augustine’s De Doctrina Christiana,” in De Doctrina Christiana: A Classic of Western Culture, pp. 97–108, at pp. 98–99, reprinted in Signs and Meanings: World and Text in Ancient Christianity ILiverpool, 1996), chapter 4. 28 Augustine, De Doctrina, Green, pp. 24–25. 29 Augustine, De Doctrina, Green, pp. 22–25.

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to reification, from sign to thing to the silence of the word, which, made flesh, transcends the entire system of discourse.30 Augustine’s desire for a communion with pure presence undermined the older representative mediation of signs, but it also provided, in the interpretive hands of prescholastic theologians, the seed for a new theory of representation. Identicality between sign and object came to inform a novel signifying process, during the twelfth century, when the eucharist was firmly conceived as being, in and of itself, what it represents. It has been conventional to invoke a growing acceptance of Aristotelian thought as accounting for the appearance in prescholastic culture of the idea that a symbol partakes of the reality it expresses. However, it may well be that the Augustinian semiotic corpus was itself perfectly capable of inspiring the belief that immanence was central to the operation of signification.31 The governing, encompassing question was, therefore, that of the relationship between signs and the world, and the implications of this question were brought to the fore in the course of the controversy provoked by the ideas of Roscelin of Compiègne. During the second half of the eleventh century, Roscelin, the most famous teacher of dialectics in the schools of northern France, initiated what came to be known as nominalism and thereby launched a debate about universals. Opposing nominalists to realists, this debate bloomed into a pivotal controversy in medieval philosophy. Universals, for instance “man” or “animal,” were general categories of properties shared by many particular entities. The discussion focused on the ontological status of these universal categories: what degree of reality did they possess, from what did they derive? For the nominalist Roscelin, these categories had neither objective nor subjective reality. They existed neither in the mind nor in reality, being simply spoken sounds or verbal expressions for mental constructs derived from experience with particular entities that exist in

30 Susan A. Handelman offers very insightful remarks on Augustine’s semiotics and reification of signs in The Slayers of Moses: The Emergence of Rabbinic Interpretation in Modern Literary Theory (Albany, 1982), pp. 89–90, pp. 113–120. 31 Chenu, “Symbolist Mentality,” pp. 134–35, 139–140; M.-D. Chenu, “The Platonisms of the Twelfth Century,” in Nature, Man, and Society in the Twelfth Century, pp. 49–98. Maierù, “ ‘Signum’ dans la culture médiévale,” pp. 69–70, discusses the many aspects of Augustinian doctrine and their differing treatment according to situated theological cultures, and he refutes a radical opposition between Aristotle and Augustine.

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nature alone.32 On the other hand, following the Platonic and Augustinian tradition, the realists maintained that, although universal categories did not have corporeal existence, they nevertheless did exist outside the human mind: in God’s mind, where, eternal and immutable, they were the source of forms for spatio-temporal things.33 Roscelin’s nominalist denial of ideal realities (universals) and of any linkage between word and physical property contradicted Augustine’s position on the reality of universal categories but not his distinction between words and referents. For Roscelin, however, referents were other words and not real things identical with divine ideas, as they ultimately were for the Augustinians. Supporters of Augustine’s position, such as Anselm of Bec, Alberic of Reims, and William of Champeaux, defended it by shifting from the earlier medieval accent on Augustine’s radical dualism between word and thing to an emphasis on his theory of ontological immanence and participation.34 This theory argued that things guided the properties of signs, that, inhering in the spatio-temporal 32 The entire issue of Vivarium 30, no. 1 (1992) is devoted to a discussion over the origin and meaning of twelfth-century nominalism. See a fuller bibliography on Roscelin and on his positions below at n. 44. 33 It is traditional in medieval historiography to contrast nominalists with realists. The term realism, however, is confusing in the context of medieval studies. Realism, also called idealism, is the medieval philosophical theory derived from Plato’s formulation, which affirmed the reality of universals (that is, abstract ideas or general forms), and argued that they were perceptible only by the mind and that they existed separately from the material objects they caused. Somewhat confusingly, the term realism is also used to describe Boethius’s and Pseudo-Dionysius’s doctrine that material objects and imagery borrowed from sense-perceptible reality had value for sacred knowledge because of their symbolic capacity and their ability to incorporate the intelligible reality they expressed. 34 Anselm expressed his opposition to Roscelin in three letters: “To John the Monk,” “To Fulco, Bishop of Beauvais,” and “The Incarnation of the Word,” all in Anselm of Canterbury, ed. and trans. Jasper Hopkins and Herbert Richardson, vol. 3 (Toronto, 1976), pp. 3–37. Mews has devoted several studies to Roscelin’s doctrine and its reception: “Anselm and Roscelin: Some New Texts and their Implications.” I. “The De incarnatione verbi and the Disputatio inter Christianum et Gentilem,” Archives d’histoire doctrinaire et littéraire du moyen Age 58 (1991), pp. 55–98; II. “A Vocalist Essay on the Trinity and Intellectual Debate c. 1080–1120,” Archives d’histoire doctrinaire et littéraire du moyen Age 65 (1998), pp. 39–90, both reprinted in Reason and Belief, nos. VI and X; Mews, “St Anselm, Roscelin and the See of Beauvais,” in Anselm: Aosta, Bec and Canterbury, ed. David E. Luscombe and Gillian R. Evans (Sheffield, 1996), pp. 106–119, in Reason and Belief, no. VIII; Mews, “The Trinitarian Doctrine of Roscelin of Compiègne and its Influence: Twelfth-Century Nominalism and Theology Re-considered,” in Mélanges offerts à Jean Jolivet, ed. Alain de Libera et al. (Paris, 1997), pp. 347–364, reprinted in Belief and Reason, no. IX. William of Champeaux’s Augustinianism is most recently discussed in Mews, “Philosophy and Theology,” pp. 168–69, with additional bibliography in notes 69–76. See additional bibliography on Roscelin below at note 44.

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realm, universals created similarities among objects. To be sure, participation in the transcendent was not a matter of identicality but only of resemblance; only God, uniquely, possessed true identicality. Disagreeing with both his teacher Roscelin and with Augustine and his followers, Abelard denied the existence of anything that is not a particular. While retaining the notion that the common nature inherent in things of the same species made them similar, he argued that such similarity fell short of constituting them as universals. For Abelard, words were universals, concepts of things, not images of things. Yet words functioned by means of images deriving their meaning, not from the things themselves but from the mode of signification at work in the human mind. Abelard held that the mind creates at will images or copies for configuring absent things. These images are the proper objects of thought and understanding, which thus operate on a likeness that the mind creates. This likeness has neither substantial reality nor the underpinning by transcendent universals that, for the Augustinians, accounted for the similarities between things. For Abelard, words apply the mind to the likeness of things, but words designate images, not their objects; words therefore signify an understanding of what they predicate rather than refer to the object itself. By pointing out that thoughts and understanding are not the same as their objects, Abelard displaced the Augustinian notion that divine realities are actually present in the human mind where they beget images of themselves. He located the act of understanding in the mind as the active inventor of universal concepts with its modus operandi of created images. From this initial controversy over universals, there emerged a reinforced vocabulary of “likeness,” and an attendant notion of images as signs of absent things.35 Conflict over universals also permeated the argument raised by Berengar of Tours in the eleventh century, which prompted northern French bishops and schoolmen to reconsider the nature of the eucharistic sign.36 For Berengar, as for Abelard, the issue was the relationship

35 Abelard’s approaches to the problem of language and reality have received much attention. This chapter benefited from the studies of James Ramsay McCallum, Abelard’s Christian Theology (1948; reprint, Merrick, 1976), pp. 40–44; John Marenbon, The Philosophy of Peter Abelard (Cambridge, 1997), pp. 162–173; Mews, “Philosophy and Theology,” pp. 168–173; Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 362–402. See below at n. 42 for a fuller bibliography on the concept of image and representation in prescholastic thought. 36 See chapter 5 above.

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of logico-linguistic structures to the mind and to reality.37 Though relying, as Abelard would later, on the tool of linguistic philosophy, Berengar argued from and for the older dualistic Augustinian distinction between sensible and spiritual, between symbol and reality.38 The rejection of physical symbolism that Berengar and his followers advocated was opposed both by monks (for instance, John of Fecamp) and by prescholastics like Lanfranc,39 Herimann of Reims, and his student, the chancellor Bruno, whose scriptural exegesis and theories of the eucharist exerted great influence on another chancellor, Anselm of Laon, whose teachings in turn influenced William of Champeaux and Hugh of St. Victor.40 37 Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 385, 402. Berengar, in rekindling the eucharistic controversy, also initiated an intense focus on sacramental theology, which dominated eleventh and twelfth-century prescholastic discussions. Significantly, some of these theologians extended to all sacraments the notion that the eucharist is a sacrament because it is Christ’s body. A sacrament (sacrae rei signum), thus, is properly sacramental when it self-identifies with its signified (signatum); Van den Eynde, Les definitions des sacrements, pp. 25–27, 138–40. For a theoretical as well as doctrinal assessment of the debate between Berengar and his opponents, see Colish, Mirror of Language, pp. 65, 72–74; Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 35–53; Miri Rubin, Corpus Christi: The Eucharist in Late Medieval Culture (Cambridge, 1992), pp. 13–25; Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 252–315; Rosier-Catach, La parole efficace, pp. 36–40. 38 I follow here Stock’s analysis of Berengar’s position in Implications of Literacy, pp. 273–287. On the Augustinian nature of Berengar’s eucharistic doctrine, see Irène Rosier-Catach, La parole efficace, pp. 36–40; Macdonald, Berengar and the Reform of Sacramental Doctrine: although the purpose of this study was to authorize the eucharistic doctrine of the Reformed Church by showing that, like Berengar’s, it was faithful to Augustinian theology, the information presented on Berengar, and the debate he fostered over the meaning of the eucharist, is abundant and useful. Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 35–43. Van den Eynde, Les definitions des sacrements, pp. 4–7, discusses Berengar’s Augustinianism with respect to sacraments in general, and on pp. 24–25 with respect to his theology of the eucharist. 39 Montclos, Lanfranc et Bérenger; Lanfranc of Bec believed he had witnessed the miraculous transformation of bread and wine into those of the flesh and blood, as his student and fellow monk Guitmund (d. ca. 1090–95) recounted in De Corporis et Sanguinis Christi Veritate, in PL CXLIX, cols. 1449D–1450D; see Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, p. 87. 40 On the leaders of the opposition to and tracts directed against Berengar, see Henry Chadwick, “Ego Berengarius,” Journal of Theological Studies, 40/2 (1989), pp. 414–445; Joseph Geiselmann, Die Eucharistielehre der Vorscholastik (Paderborn, 1926); Ludwig Hödl, “Die confessio Berengarii von 1059, eine Arbeit zum frühscholastischen Eucharistietraktat,” Scholastik, 37 (1962), pp. 370–394; Charles Radding, Theology, Rhetoric, and Politics in the Eucharistic Controversy, 1078–1079: Alberic of Monte Cassino against Berengar of Tours (Columbia, 2003); Toivo J. Holopainen, Dialectic and Theology in the Eleventh Century (Leiden, 1996); Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 44–53; Van den Eynde, Les definition des sacrements, pp. 25–27. Anselm of Laon’s theological treatment of the eucharist was diversely followed by the Victorines, William of Champeaux and Hugh of St. Victor: Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 74–75, 78–86,

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Chancery-scholars were strong promoters of the notion of real presence, and it was indeed in defense of this concept that they engaged extensively in larger debates over sign theory, representation, and the authority and authenticity of the written word, both scripture and script. The earlier Augustinian semiotics buttressing Berengar’s position had stressed the radical duality of signs as involving a negative dissimilitude: on the one hand, a mental, eternal signified, on the other, a physical, transitory signifier that refers to its object but is otherwise inessential to it. As they had done in their discussions of universals and of the referentiality of language, prescholastic theologians probed such dualism in developing their eucharistic theology. In so doing, they scrutinized the economy by which an iconic sign might be similar to that which it denotes, and the mode involved and the extent to which it might itself partake of the object represented. As in the discussion about language and universals, attention was redirected away from Augustine’s dualism toward Augustine’s appreciation of a sign’s tangible aspect.41 The incarnation of God was no longer to be elucidated by an image, as had happened when the notion of God as the original and of Christ as living image made it possible to see them as one and the same God, though not the same person. Rather, the image was now held to be the realization of form in matter and came to be understood as an actual incarnation. Images were promoted to quasipersonal beings.42 The language of analogy seeped into the language of

103–105. This Laon-Victorine eucharistic theology described the res of the eucharist as the true body and blood of Christ, and insisted on the substantial (real) presence of Christ in the sacrament. It considered this physical presence of Christ to be itself a sign of another reality, the mystical union between Christ and the believer. Gilbert of Poitiers and Abelard retained this interpretation, only substituting the church for the believer in the mystical union: Macy, Theologies of the Eucharist, pp. 105, 108, 110, 115, 131. As the sensual reality of the sacrament is held to signify a spiritual reality, symbolism is maintained. This conception bypasses the conflation of signifier and signified implied in the physicalist theology of the eucharist, but its recuperation of the dualism in Augustine’s sign theory occurs through acceptance of a sign (the eucharistic host), which is itself the embodiment of its object. 41 Maierù, “‘Signum’ dans la culture médiévale,” pp. 69–70, discusses early theologians’ tendency to rely on Augustine’s depreciation of the signifier vis-à-vis the signified and to avoid his own attention to the sign’s sensuous character. 42 Hans Belting, Likeness and Presence: A History of the Image before the Era of Art (Chicago, 1994), p. 153. Helpful in guiding me through the concept of image and representation in prescholastic thought were David N. Bell, The Image and Likeness: The Augustinian Spirituality of William of Saint-Thierry (Kalamazoo, 1984); Belting, Likeness and Presence; Nicée II, 787–1987: Douze siècles d’images religieuses, ed. Francois Boespflug and Nicolas Lossky (Paris, 1987); Giles Constable, Three Studies in Medieval

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ontology: “to be like” became “to be part of.” The cultural content of the analogy, that is, the relationship between the object and its image, was altered so that an iconic representation might be seen as more real than the empirical experience. This is what occurs according to the doctrine of transubstantiation, where the consecrated bread and wine are the true body and blood of Christ. The eucharistic debate produced the idea that its referential reality could characterize a material sign. In such a cultural crucible, the material sign became representative less because of its relationship to a conceptual ideal than for its capacity to embody its referent’s ontological characteristics. In semiotic terms, the represented object (the signified) became a constitutive part of the sign (the signifier), because for the sign to stand for its object, the sign had to incorporate a likeness of that object; it was the expression of that incorporated likeness that came to be seen as the sign’s meaning. This newly elaborated semiotic doctrine—though it maintained a distinction between objects, the signifying functions of signs, and their representative capacity—in fact sanctioned a conflation of signifier and signified so that immanence rather than transcendence came to govern the rapport between signifier and signified.

Religious and Social Thought (Cambridge, 1995), esp. pp. 179–217; Carlo Ginzburg, “Representation: Le mot, l’idée, la chose,” Annales: E.S.C. 46 (1991), pp. 1219–1234; Iconicity: Essays on the Nature of Culture; Festschrift for Thomas A. Sebeok on his 65th Birthday, ed. Paul Bouissac, Michael Herzfeld, and Roland Posner (Tübingen, 1986); L’image: Fonctions et usages des images dans l’Occident médiéval, ed. Jerôme Baschet and Jean-Claude Schmitt (Paris, 1996), particularly J. Baschet, “Introduction: L’image objet,” pp. 7–26, J.-Cl. Schmitt, “Imago: de l’image a l’imaginaire,” pp. 29–37, Jean Wirth, “Structure et fonctions de l’image chez saint Thomas d’Aquin,” pp. 39–57, and Georges Didi-Huberman, “Imitation, representation, function, remarques sur un mythe épistemologique,” pp. 59–86; Images of Memory: On Remembering and Representation, ed. Susanne Küchler and Walter Melion (Washington, D.C., 1991); Javelet, Image et resemblance; Gerhart B. Ladner, Ad Imaginem Dei: The Image of Man in Medieval Art (Latrobe, 1965); G. Ladner, Images and Ideas in the Middle Ages (Rome, 1983); Legendre, Le désir politique de Dieu; Louis Marin, Portrait of the King (Minneapolis, 1988); William J.T. Mitchell, Iconology: Image, Text, Ideology (Chicago, 1986); Stephen G. Nichols, Romanesque Signs: Early Medieval Narrative and Iconography (New Haven, 1983); Jean-Claude Schmitt, “Les images classificatrices,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 147 (1989), pp. 311–341; John E. Sullivan, The Image of God: The Doctrine of St. Augustine and Its Influence (Dubuque, 1963).

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Personhood and Individuality The discussion of the identity, whether divine, historical, or allegorical, of the Christic person present in the eucharist had broached the question of the nature of personhood. This question received growing consideration as the relationship between universals and individuals, destabilized in the above-described debate over universals, was explored in a quest to understand, first, the persons comprising the Trinity and later the human person. Nominalism, by insisting on individuality, tended to fracture the divine unity of the Trinity into three separate entities. The nominalist Roscelin, wanting to address the problem of how the three Trinitarian persons of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit might be of one substance yet not all incarnate in Christ, analyzed the terms Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in a logical sense, as names humanly imposed. Although nowhere did Roscelin actually state that these names signified separate things, his theology of the Trinity provoked attacks by Anselm of Bec, who accused Roscelin of being a dialectical heretic, one who thought universal substances to be nothing but the puff of an utterance. In The Incarnation of the Word, Anselm asserts that proper names designate different persons, indicating that, while persons bearing such names share a common nature, they are irreducibly distinct one from the other with respect to distinguishing properties: in his person, the Son assumed two natures so that the person of God and the person of man was the same, and that made the person of the Son different from that of the Father and of the Spirit, since different persons cannot be the same man.43 Roscelin was forced to defend his views on the Trinity at a council held in Soissons in 1092, where he evaded the accusation that he preached division in divine essence by affirming that his argument related only to names and nomenclature, not to God himself.44 Abelard pursued this debate in a treatise on the Unity and Trinity of God, and he argued that divine attributes were not fixed things but

43 “The Incarnation of the Word” (Epistola de Incamatione Verbi), in Hopkins and Richardson, Anselm of Canterbury, vol. 3, pp. 9–37, esp. pp. 27–31. 44 On the debate, see the studies cited above at note 34 and J. Jolivet, “Trois variations médiévales sur l’universel et l’individu: Roscelin, Abelard, Gilbert de la Porrée,” Revue de métaphysique et de morale 97 (1992), pp. 111–155; Mews, “Philosophy and Theology,” 164–68; and C.J. Mews, “Nominalism and Theology before Abaelard: New Light on Roscelin of Compiègne,” Vivarium 30 (1992), pp. 4–33; François Picavet, Roscelin philosophe et théologien d’après la légende et l’histoire (Paris, 1911), pp. 50–52.

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names predicated of God to signify certain properties of his being. The relationships between Son and Father, or Holy Spirit and Father, could be understood in terms of the relationships between these properties.45 Thus Abelard introduced the notion that members of a same species, such as men, may yet differ in their properties, or even by definition, when such properties remain intermixed. The example repeatedly used by Abelard to clarify this instance is that of the seal’s waxen image. Both the waxen image made from the material and the material (wax) from which it is made are the same in essence and number, but they differ, not only by definition but by property, because the waxen image must be wax, and it comes from the wax and not from itself (the waxen image was not generated by the waxen image), but the wax may be joined as an image or as anything else, in the same way that if a man is a man, he must be an animal, but the species animal can be a man or any other animal.46 Abelard’s reasoning illustrates how contemporary discussions of the persons of the Trinity were never far removed from inquiry into human personhood. Indeed, such debates fostered the creation and dissemination of the very term “person” (persona).47

45 Mews, “Philosophy and Theology,” pp. 168–73: Abelard’s treatise “On the Unity and Trinity of God” is also known as the Theologia “Summi Boni” (first composed c. 1120), revised as the Theologia Christiana c. 1122–1126, and again as the Theologia (or Introductio ad Theologiam or Theologia “Scholarium”). The Theologia “Summi Boni” and Theologia “Scholarium” are edited by Eloi M. Buytaert and C.J. Mews, Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III: Theologia “Summi Boni” and Theologia “Scholarum” (Brepols-Turnhout, 1987; CCCM 13); the Theologia Christiana is edited by E.M. Buytaert, Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. II (Brepols-Turnhout, 1969; CCCM 12). Roscelin taught Abelard, who came to oppose him vigorously even though Abelard may have learned from Roscelin the method of interpreting ancient logical texts as discussions about words rather than things; see Marenbon, Philosophy of Peter Abelard, p. 9. 46 The full text of Abelard’s seal metaphor is given and further discussed below, at pp. 143–146 and notes 70–71, where the seal metaphor in general receives a systematic examination. See also chapter 7, at note 65. 47 M. Bergeron, “La structure du concept latin de personne,” Etudes d’histoire littéraire et doctrinale du XIIIe siècle 2 (1952), pp. 121–161; M.-D. Chenu, “Tradition and Progress,” in Nature, Man, and Society, pp. 325–326, makes a strict connection between twelfth-century work in the field of trinitarian theology and the creation of new terms such as persona; Mary L. O’Hara, The Logic of Human Personality: An Onto-Logical Account (Atlantic Highlands, 1997), pp. 54–56, discusses Richard of St. Victor’s (d. 1173) analysis of the notion of the human person to establish the doctrine of the Trinity. Richard of St. Victor’s trinitarian theology receives full treatment in Nico den Bok, Communicating the Most High: A Systematic Study of Person and Trinity in the Theology of Richard of St. Victor ([d]. 1173) (Paris, 1996), where an entire chapter (9) is devoted to “Human Person and the Trinity.” Marcel Mauss, “A Category of the Human Mind: The Notion of Person; The Notion of Self,” in

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Richard of St. Victor (d. 1173), a twelfth-century theologian who himself contributed greatly to the definition and acceptance of the term “persona” in the course of his work on the Trinity, commented that the noun “person” is regularly found “in the mouths of all, even of peasants.”48 The prescholastic milieu of schools and chanceries had to consider human personhood in yet another context, the establishment of documentary authority. The authority of written documents, in a fundamental shift, moved away from immediate dependency on God and the supernatural, coming increasingly to derive from and depend on human persons.49 At issue in this shift was a need to project the authority and accountability of human beings beyond their actual, empirical presence, so as to impart to charters a level of permanence previously expected only of God. The solution achieved centered on the seal, a sign-object standing in, substituting, for its owner or user.

The Category of the Person: Anthropology, Philosophy, History, ed Michael Carrithers et al. (Cambridge, 1985), pp. 1–25, analyzes the notion of person beyond its connection with trinitarian doctrine. 48 Richard of St. Victor, De Trinitate, PL CXCVI, col. 933, quoted in Chenu, “Tradition and Progress,” p. 326; and in O’Hara, Logic of Human Personality, p. 54, with further comments on Richard’s theological, ontological, and logical approaches to “person.” On Richard’s revolutionary approaches to concepts of individuality and personality, see Nico den Bok, Communicating the Most High: A Systematic Study of Person and Trinity in the Theology of Richard of St. Victor ([d]. 1173) (Paris, 1996). 49 Guenée, “Authentique et approuvé,” reviews a sample of excerpts from charters and canon law that testify to the semantic overlap between authority and authenticity: in order to be authentic, a seal or a written document had to be accredited by or to emanate from an authority such as the pope, a bishop, or a lay magnate. As, from a practical viewpoint, this worldly accrediting authority was in the process of replacing divine authority, the reasoning of canonists in dealing with documentary authenticity became circular, thus revealing their difficulty in conceptualizing the nature of the authority to be invested in human signs; see further remarks on documentary authority and authenticity above pp. 57, 114, and below at note 79, and chapter 7, at notes 105–106. In his elegant and pithy essay Sincerity and Authenticity (Cambridge, 1972), Lionel Trilling remarked on the connection between sincerity, taken as an element of personal autonomy, and “the intensified sense of personal identity that developed along with the growth of the idea of society.” Placed within the context of Hegel’s historical anthropology, sincerity thus becomes a negative virtue “standing between the self and the disintegration which is essential if it is to develop its true, its entire, freedom” (p. 47). It is an argument of the present chapter that new and related concerns for identity, authority, and authenticity seem linked to an evolution toward social regimentation.

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chapter six The Ego of Diplomatic Discourse

In the decades following the year 1000, the number of charters produced and preserved in northern France increased by several orders of magnitude, setting off a trend toward written documentation that was never reversed.50 These charters were issued in the names of the aris-

50 Pratiques de l’écrit documentaire au XIe siècle, ed. Olivier Guoyotjeannin, Laurent Morelle, and Michel Parisse, Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 155 (1997); Pratiques de l’écrit, ed. Etienne Anheim and Pierre Chastang, Médiévales 56 (2009), pp. 5–113. See below at note 54 an annotated bibliography on the documentary decline that may or may not have followed the Carolingian reliance on the written word. In reviewing lay charters in Flanders, Ponthieu, Picardie, Ile-de-France, Normandy, and Champagne between 900 and 1050,1 found that 10 percent are of the tenth century, while 90 percent are of the first half of the eleventh century. Sources consulted for this project include: cartularies and archival holdings cited in my dissertation, La châtellenie de Montmorency des origines a 1368: Aspects féodaux, sociaux et économiques (Pontoise, 1980), pp. 349–360, which bear principally on the Ile-de-France; the electronic database of the ARTEM in Nancy, which gathers all original French charters prior to 1121 (see a partial publication by Michèle Courtois, Chartes originales antérieures a 1121 conservées dans le département du Nord [Nancy, 1981]; for the full inventory of French original charters prior to 1121, see La diplomatique française du Haut Moyen Age, ed. Benoît-Michel Tock et al., 2 vols [Turnhout, 2001]); the northern French charters catalogued in the “Nouveau Wauters,” the electronic database managed by the CETEDOC of the Catholic University of Louvain-La-Neuve, which includes all published and unpublished charters produced in historical Belgium prior to 1200 and is available on CD-Rom: Thesaurus Diplomaticus, ed. Philippe Demonty (Turnhout, 1997); the cartularies of religious establishments located in the bishoprics of Paris, Senlis, Laon, Beauvais, Amiens, Soissons, Arras, Cambrai, Reims, and Rouen, which are catalogued, critically described, and available for consultation on microfilms at the Institut de Recherche et d’Histoire des Textes (I.R.H.T., Paris): CartulR— Répertoire des cartulaires médiévaux et modernes, ed. Paul Bertrand (Orléans, 2006; on line: http://www.cn-telma.fr/cartulR/); episcopal acta from Amiens, Arras, Beauvais, Cambrai, Laon, Noyon, Reims, and Soissons (see, on the availability of these episcopal materials, Michel Parisse, “Importance et richesse des chartes épiscopales: Les exemples de Metz et de Toul, des origines a 1200,” in A propos des actes d’évêques, pp. 19–43, esp. pp. 41–43; and Parisse, “La recherche française sur les actes des évêques: Les travaux d’un groupe de recherche,” Die Diplomatik der Bischofsurkunde vor 1250 I La diplomatique episcopale avant 1250: Referate zum VIII. Internationalen Kongress fur Diplomatik, Innsbruck, 1993 [Innsbruck, 1995], pp. 203–08); princely acts, which have in only a few cases been published under the heading of their princely authors: Actes des comtes de Flandre/Oorkonden der graven van Vlaanderen: 1071–1128 by Fernand Vercauteren (Brussels, 1938); 1128–1168 by Thérèse de Hemptinne (Brussels, 1989); 1191–1206 by Walter Prevenier (3 vols., Brussels, 1964); Clovis Brunel, Recueil des actes des comtes de Pontieu, 1026–1279 (Paris, 1930); Marie Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, 911–1066 (Caen, 1961); Eugène de Lépinois, Recherches historiques et critiques sur l’ancien comté et les comtes de Clermont en Beauvaisis du XIe au XIIIe siècle (Beauvais, 1877); William Mendel Newman, Les seigneurs de Nesles en Picardie (XIIe–XIIIe siècle): Leurs chartes et leur histoire, 2 vols. (Paris, 1971), vol. 2, pp. 27–161; Jean-François Nieus, Les chartes des comtes de Saint-Pol (XIe–XIIIe siècles)

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tocrats responsible for the transactions being recorded in writing, such transactions typically involving gifts of land made to religious houses and to their saints for the salvation of the donors’ souls. However, the actual production and subsequent control of such written records remained a monopoly of the ecclesiastical beneficiaries who drafted them and maintained them archivally. Both donors and benefactors were interested in ensuring textual and transactional permanence; the most reliable traditional agency for this purpose was God. Documentary writing derived much of its power from a visible affinity with Holy Scripture, an affinity established both by graphic logic and by liturgical manipulation. Graphic logic involved such methods as the inscription of a Chrismon, a trinitarian invocation, the use of Latin, biblical preambles (arenga), and divine maledictions and threats of excommunication against anyone who might challenge the gift being recorded.51 Liturgical manipulations included the charters’

(Turnhout, 2008); John Benton and Michel Bur, Recueil des actes de’Henri le Libéral, comte de Champagne (1152–1181). Tome I (Paris, 2009). In France in the Making 843– 1180 (Oxford, 1985), Jean Dunbabin gives an insightful account of princely charters produced between 987 and 1108 (pp. 130–32) and between 1108 and 1180 (253–55). 51 The best analysis, with current bibliography, of the textual, graphic, and linguistic components of diplomatic discourse is provided by Olivier Guyotjeannin, Jacques Pycke, and Benoit-Michel Tock, Diplomatique médiévale (Turnhout, 1993; 3rd rev. ed., 2006; references are to the first edition), pp. 71–102. On the use of spiritual maledictions in charters, see Jeffrey Bowman, “Do Neo-Romans Curse,” Viator 28 (1997), pp. 1–32; and Lester K. Little, Benedictine Maledictions: Liturgical Cursing in Romanesque France (Ithaca, N.Y., 1993), who, however, tends to focus on English and southern European charters; Emily Zack Tabuteau, Transfers of Property in EleventhCentury Norman Law (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1988), pp. 219–22, with a questionable discussion of the role of signatures in charters. Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, p. 148, no. 43 (1015–1026), donation of Duke Richard II to the abbey of St. Ouen: “per signum crucis cum excommunicatione hanc cartam firmavit.” See further examples of maledictions and threats of excommunication in C. Brunel, Pontieu, p. 23 (charter no. 11), 1100: sealed act of Guy, count of Ponthieu, in favor of the monastery of St. Sauveur of Montreuil-sur-Mer, “infractores autem hujus traditionis, nisi digna satisfactione resipuerint, a Deo et omnibus Sanctis ejus anathematizati, eterne dampnationi subjaceant. Amen.” Similar formulas are in use in charters no. 4 (1067) at p. 6, no. 8 (1100) at p. 14, no. 10 (1100) at p. 21, no. 12 (1100) at p. 25, no. 25 (1136–37) at p. 42, no. 27 (1143) at p. 46, and no. 62 (1159–60) at p. 95. Two dictionary entries provide the best discussion of chrismon and trinitarian invocation: Alfred Gawlik in the Lexikon des Mittelalters, vol. 2, col. 1905; and the Dictionnaire d’archéologie chrétienne et de liturgie, vol. 3–1, cols. 1481–1534. On the use of the cross within charters, see a state of the question by Michel Parisse, “Croix autographes de souscription dans l’Ouest de la France au XIe siècle,” in Graphische Symbole in mittelalterlichen Urkunden, Peter Ruck, ed. (Sigmaringen, 1996), pp. 143–155. The standard work on preambles (arengae) in which is given a catalogue and a survey

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production by priestly scribes and their placement on altars or in Gospels.52 A manuscript charter was kindred to Scripture and, as such, was a space of sacred and secure inscription. The charter’s text, however, was formulated in the first-person voice of the individual who was making the donation, and it conveyed the will, the intention, of an individual donor (Fig. 18). The religiously designed charter located the ego, the “I” of diplomatic discourse, within the rationale of Christian ethics and salvific eschatology. Therefore, with respect to those charters given in his own name, and to which he was entrusting the fate of his soul and of his kin, the donor remained a problematic author. First, he had not himself created the manuscript document, which was rendered in Latin, a language he hardly knew. Second, the written text itself was fundamentally impersonal because its actual scribe, who remained anonymous, wrote in an official or a technical capacity, as a fictive person, persona fictiva, in the name of someone else. Writing in the name of a donor, representing him as author, the scribe introduced motivations, decisions, and gifts, repeatedly using the word ego. Utilizing this first-person form, the scribe, though semiotically entering the subjectivity of the donor, in fact maintained the reference of third person. Hence the locus of subjectivity transcended the individual, and what presented itself as individual subjective discourse was actually suffused with multiple voices.53 Diplomatic discourse thus incorporated a cultural “self” that was quite distinct from an individual body. Yet the postmillennial charter required a first-person-singular pronominal category, an ego to function as index, to indicate the originator of the utterance. It may be helpful to point out here that this method of written documentation developed in mid-eleventh-century northern France at the end of a period of a century and a half (900–1050) during which transactions had normally been accomplished by the oral statements of principals and witnesses,

of thematic evolution is by Heinrich Fichtenau, Arenga: Spätantike und Mittelalter im Spiegel von Urkundenformeln (Cologne, 1957). 52 Fauroux, Recueil des actes des ducs de Normandie, for instance, p. 334, no. 149 (1040–50): confirmation by Duke William of a donation in favor of the abbey of St. Leger, “pro sua suorumque salute, donationem supra altare posuit, de his omnibus que Hunfridus dederat.” See further examples in C. Brunel, Pontieu, pp. 21, 30, 120, 129, 225. See also a discussion of placing charters on altars in A. de Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique française et pontificale, T. II: L’acte privé (Paris, 1948), pp. 112–14. 53 Semiotics, Self, and Society, ed. Benjamin Lee and Greg Urban (Berlin, 1989), esp. intro., p. 4, and Greg Urban, “The I of Discourse,” pp. 27–51.

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usually made under oath and publicized by symbolic gestures and rituals.54 Set within such oral and visual modes, the empirical presence of the subject, of ego, had of course been immediate and undoubted. With the growing importance of writing in the ceremony that sanctioned land transactions, the ego of written diplomatic discourse—a linguistic category differing from the person uttering the words—could not provide referentiality through actual contiguity with the charter’s author. The issue became how to reconcile ego, the linguistic category, and ego, the physical individual, the actual subject of the enunciation. It is because the postmillennial charter long remained part of a

54 On the spoken word as the foundation of social and economic relations between the tenth and the early twelfth century, see Stock, Implications of Literacy, p. 17; Louis Stouff, “Etude sur la formation des contrats par l’écriture dans le droit des formules du Vème au XIIème siècle,” Nouvelle revue historique de droit français et étranger 11 (1887), pp. 249–287, at pp. 274–275. On Norman transactions between lay persons being executed without charters during the eleventh century, see Tabuteau’s remarks in Transfers of Property, pp. 7–8, 213–14, 218–19. Recent scholarship on the Carolingian period (ca. 750–950) emphasizes the centrality of the written word during that time: McKitterick, Carolingians and the Written Word; Janet L. Nelson, “Dispute Settlement in Carolingian West Francia,” in The Settlement of Disputes in Early Medieval Europe, ed. Wendy Davies and Paul Fouracre (Cambridge, 1986), pp. 45–64. Warren Brown, “Charters as weapons. On the role played by early medieval dispute records in the disputes they record,” Journal of Medieval History 28 (2002), pp. 227–248, focusing his analysis on the charters of the Bavarian cathedral church at Freising argues that clerical scribes used dispute charters to construct narratives that enhanced their claims even as they delegitimized their opponents. Brown concludes “That whether or not dispute charters … were ever used to support a claim at court, the creative effort that scribes put into constructing them is our best evidence that the stories they told were important” (p. 247). Nelson, “Literacy in Carolingian Government,” in The Uses of Literacy in Early Mediaeval Europe, ed. Rosamond McKitterick (Cambridge, 1990), pp. 258–296. Karl Ferdinand Werner, “ ‘Missus, marchio, comes: Entre l’administration centrale et l’administration locale de l’empire carolingien,” in ed. Werner Paravicini and Karl Ferdinand Werner, Histoire comparée de l’administration (IVe–XVIIIe siècles) (Munich, 1980), pp. 191–239. On the assumption that the written word would not have been aimed at officials unable to handle it, a case has been made for the practical literacy of Carolingian lay elites and for presenting the development of literacy during the eleventh and twelfth centuries as a continuation of the Carolingian achievement (McKitterick, Carolingians and the Written Word). Yet Nelson, “Dispute Settlement in Carolingian West Francia,” p. 55, concludes that disputes between laymen were settled through feud, mediation, or arbitration, and went unrecorded. Whatever the level of Carolingian literate skills and the prescriptive power of the Carolingian written word, it seems that their legacy, if any, did not affect the realm of landed transactions, for even during the Carolingian period property matters between lay elites were settled without recourse to the written word. In post-Carolingian northern France, legal and administrative dependency on the written word was not maintained, and only ecclesiastical establishments have left traces of documentary practices.

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ceremonial format, in which the charter’s operations hinged less on its legibility (as text) than on its visibility (as scripture), that the charter’s contextual apparatus long continued to derive from and to parallel the ambient oral modes. The oral and the written did not stand in opposition, then, but operated jointly within a single framework of intelligibility. This framework rested on the primacy of empirical presence in the assertion of authority; it construed power to emanate from character, to be the effluence of personality. Thus, when gifts of land were contested and resolved by charter, as often happened, such disputes were not settled by considering the parties as donors and recipients, and by applying legal rules appropriate to these categories, but rather by an agreement through which the status and self-esteem of both parties as particular individuals might be saved and a social relationship between them created or renewed. Behavior was remembered and inscribed in the form of statements about particular persons and their actions.55 The attention was to individual will and responsibility, to a personal examination of the implications of one’s actions, which were understood as involving, beside terrestrial and social consequences, merits capable of saving (or losing) one’s soul in the afterlife. In short, the legal realm conjured up by the charters was equated with the realms

55 Cheyette, “Invention of the State,” pp. 161–162, 167–169. A good treatment of the mechanisms for the settlement of disputes is Stephen D. White, “Feuding and PeaceMaking in the Touraine around the Year 1100,” Traditio 42 (1986), pp. 195–263, reprinted in Feuding and Peace-Making in Eleventh-Century France, no. I. In chapter 1 above (especially at notes 8, 25–26), I argue that, in the case of contested land gifts, postmillennial churchmen rarely referred to the relevant granting charters in trying to prove their rights, and that these were in any case often too vague about the property transferred to be of use. Rather, expert memory was assembled continuously in numerous settings where the working intelligence of daily life— possession and use of land, social relations—was repeatedly reshaped and maintained through such recurrent negotiations concerning titles to land. This argument, that charters were not invoked even when land transfers were challenged, has been taken up by Laurent Morelle, who further examined the role of the written word in the settlement of land disputes: “Les chartes dans la gestion des conflits (France du Nord, XIe–debut XIIe siècle),” in Pratiques de l’écrit documentaire au XIe siècle, pp. 267–298. Steven Vanderputten, “Monastic Literate Practices in Eleventh- and Twelfth-Century northern France,” Journal of Medieval History 32 (2006), pp. 101–126, fully surveys the relevant literature before concluding, on the basis of his analysis of the charters of the Benedictine monasteries of Marchiennes and of Saint-Amand, that the increasing recourse to the written word was met with resistance and that the role of charters in disputes was ambiguous. Vanderputten insists that literate practices on a local level should be carefully considered in order fully to assess changes in literate behavior.

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of ethics and theology. The “subjective” and “personal” in the law, far from diminishing legal authority, in fact constituted it.56 The individual person encountered in prescholastic charters is, pace Jacob Burckhardt,57 an autonomous, voluntary, and empirically present agent, situated within a set of social relationships arising out of consent and cont(r)act. The sources of empirical presence within the charter were, necessarily, the event recorded and its author. Thus the focus on the individual coalesced around two related requirements—the need to anchor the written charter within the concrete ceremony of gift giving, and the need to embody the determinant elements of this context: the transaction itself and the actual speakers (empirical, physical persons who had performed and witnessed the transaction). How to achieve this incarnation? The answer was a system of signs. Thus the evolution of the charter’s format from sacred inscription to sealed deed occurred as an attempt to incorporate within the charter the actual nature of personal authority rooted in being, soon to be obsolescent. At first, transactions and their authors loomed equally large. Evidence of the transaction, such as a symbolic rod or knife, was initially either manipulated together with or even affixed to the charter.58 By the late eleventh century, however, only donors’ and witnesses’ names

56

Jaeger, Envy of Angels, p. 274. Martin, “Inventing Sincerity, Refashioning Prudence,” pp. 1309–11, quotes and discusses Jacob Burckhardt, Die Cultur der Renaissance in Italien: Ein Versuch (Basel, 1860), analyzing the influence of Burckhardt’s elegantly argued notion that humanistic and individualistic ideals originated in Renaissance Italy, while in the Middle Ages, a veil “of faith, illusion and childish prepossession” made man “conscious of himself only as member of a race, people, party, family, or corporation—only through some general category” (p. 1309). 58 For an excellent discussion, with current bibliography, of the symbols and ceremonials deployed to foster and memorialize transactions, see Guyotjeannin, Diplomatique médiévale, pp. 86–88, which does not, however, entirely supersede Boüard, Manuel de diplomatique, t. II, pp. 112–119. In 1069, William of Normandy, king of England, pretended to jab the symbolic knife of the transaction into the beneficiary abbot’s hand as an “obvious sign” (evidenti signo) of the perpetual rooting of his donation within the abbey’s inalienable patrimony: Achille Deville, Cartulaire de l’abbaye de la Sainte-Trinité-du-Mont de Rouen, appendice à Benjamin Guérard, Cartulaire de l’abbaye de Saint-Bertin (Paris, 1840), no. 67, p. 455. In some cases, the charter was evidently only symbolic of the transaction, because the parchment itself remained entirely blank, an unequivocal case of the medium being the message: on the cartae sine litteris (blank charters), see Milko Kos, “Carta sine litteris,” Mitteilungen des Instituts fur Osterreichische Geschichtsforschung 62 (1954), pp. 97–100; Aaron Gurevic, “Representations et attitudes a l’égard de la propriété pendant le Haut-Moyen Age,” Annales: E.S.C. 27 (1972), pp. 523–547, at p. 533 note 43; Paul Zumthor, La lettre et la voix de la littérature médiévale (Paris, 1987), p. 97. 57

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appear in the charters, preceded by an inscribed cross, a sign not necessarily autograph, although it might be (Fig. 3).59 The signatory who marked a cross on a charter, or had it inscribed, would also have made a ceremonial sign of the cross across his or her body, an act usually described in the charter’s text.60 The manual and manuscript crosses were signs both of identity and commitment, typically accompanied only by the name received at baptism. Such crosses indicated individual filiation as son, or daughter, of God, and hence individual commitment as God’s child; they recorded Christian filiation and the subscription of a solemn oath made in the presence and in the name of Christ crucified. Thus the person engaged by the charter was responsible both for the content of the charter, the gift of land, and for his or her soul, since the land had been given, on oath, to enter the economy of salvation. The initially tangible symbols of rod and knife gave way to the scripted cross on charters. From signs of conveyance to signs of the authors and the witnesses to conveyance, the focus moved from the action and its object to the actors. This shift occurred in conjunction with the increased concern for salvation characteristic of postmillennial aristocratic spirituality.61 The nascent hermeneutics of personal identity tended to merge with the theology of the soul, but this fusion

59 Parisse, “Croix autographes de souscription.” It gives me pleasure to acknowledge here how much I was inspired by Beatrice Fraenkel, La signature: Genèse d’un signe (Paris, 1992); see her analysis of the cross on documents at pp. 63–65, 176–77 (Fr. signer and se signer, a parallelism, “to sign” and “to cross oneself,” not rendered in English). 60 Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record , p. 295, and p. 313 where he quotes an Anglo-Norman (and possibly spurious) charter given in 1109 by Hugh of Chester for Chester Abbey in the presence of Anselm of Bec, archbishop of Canterbury: “Earl Hugh and my barons have confirmed all these things by the seal of Almighty God, that is the sign of the holy cross, so that each of us makes a sign of the cross with his own hand as evidence for posterity.” Similar formulas are in use in C. Brunel, Pontieu, charter no. 14 (1053) at p. 27, charter no. 22bis (1119–29) at pp. 661–62, charter no. 21 (1103–29) at p. 36. 61 A particularly eloquent charter, issued for the Cistercian abbey of Clairmarais by Enguerran, count of Saint-Pol in ca. 1149–1164, testifies to the count’s desire to enhance the salvation of his soul while there is still time, while he still inhabits his frail body: ‘Ego Ingelramnus, Dei gratia comes de Sancto Paulo, humanae vitae brevitatem attendens et ad redemptionem animae meae, dum adhuc vacat et in hoc fragili corpore subsisto, aliquid acquirere cupiens, necessarium duxi donations quas ego vel hominess mei comitatus ecclesiae Sanctae Mariae de Claromaresch . . . . contulerunt . . . confirmare et corrobare. . .,” Nieus, Les chartes des comtes de Saint-Pol, no. 32 p. 116–118 ; remarkably, the charter closely follows the prologue of the Rule of St. Benedict: ‘Ad vitam volumus pervenire perpetuam, dum adhuc vacat et in hoc corpore sumus’ (emphasis mine).

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did not last long. For all its potentially powerful symbolism, the cross functioning as a sign-signature on a charter marked identity only in the broadest possible terms: membership in a Christian society. Although the cross might emanate directly from the author of the charter, from the “I” of diplomatic discourse, it more often was actually traced by the scribe. In either case, the cross denoted that the authority for the enforcement of the charter, its ultimate warrantor, was God; indeed, the cross both signed and signified God. When seals began to be affixed to documents during the course of the eleventh century, the manuscript textual cross was still a standard appurtenance of charters. The charter by which Robert, son of the count of Flanders, made a donation for the salvation of his soul to the abbey of Watten in 1093 reads: “In order that these dispositions may remain firm and untouched through eternity, I have had this charter confirmed and signed with the victorious symbol of the holy cross, and with the sign of my authority and the seal of my highness.”62 While both cross and seal signified a sacred undertaking, and both have rhetorical presence within the charter, there are two major distinctions between them as documentary signs. First, the cross remains a written sign, and in this case non-autograph, whereas the seal is both a material object and a figural presence that emanated directly from the author of the charter. Second, as the fairly standard clause within the document makes clear, the cross symbolizes Christ victorious, while the seal signifies the authority, as it is the image, of its owner. The cross signaled Christian kinship and invoked God’s authority; the seal marked and invoked personal identity and authority.

On the centrality of salvation in eleventh and twelfth-century French aristocratic spirituality as evidenced in charters, see the works by Constance Bouchard, Sword, Miter, and Cloister: Nobility and the Church, 980–1198 (Ithaca, 1987); Barbara H. Rosenwein, To Be the Neighbor of Saint-Peter: The Social Meaning of Cluny’s Property, 909–1049 (Ithaca, 1989); Linda Seidel, Songs of Glory: The Romanesque Façades of Aquitaine (Chicago, 1981); Tabuteau, Transfers of Property; Stephen D. White, Custom, Kinship, and Gifts to Saints: The “Laudatio Parentum” in Western France, 1050–1150 (Chapel Hill, 1988). 62 Vercauteren, Actes des comtes de Flandres, no 12, pp. 38–41, Bruges, 6 January 1093, at pp. 40–41: Ego Robertus, comitis Roberti Hierosolimitani filius . . . . Ut autem hec omnia rata firmaque et inconvulsa de hinc in eternum permaneant, et ut ipsi fratres tam presentes quam posteri pro salute mea et antecessorum successorumque meorum obnixius apud Deum interveniant neve quis vel ego aut heres vel proheres meus, seu qualibet alia persona aliquatenus cum jactura infringere audeat, summopere precipio, cartamque istam cum agye crucis tropheo, cum signo auctoritatis et excellentie mee sigillo insigniri confirmarique et corroborari astipulans facio.

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The historical study of seals has assumed that their forms and uses reflected such fundamental structures as social relations, political systems, legal norms, and esthetic trends.63 It is because I have found politics, law, orality, and literacy inadequate as contexts to account for the diffusion of seals and the newer formulation of personal identity in the eleventh and twelfth centuries that,64 inspired by semiotic anthropology and its programmatic directions,65 I took as the starting point the analysis the seals themselves and considered sealed charters from the viewpoint of the writing bureaus that originated them. A review of the corpus of eleventh and twelfth-century aristocratic charters permits three striking conclusions: these charters, produced by ecclesiastical beneficiaries, originated from a variety of chanceries and scriptoria; they were not systematically sealed; and the diversity of practice seems to correlate with the differing cultures of the specific issuing writing bureaus. Thus, for example, 61 charters issued in the name of Ivo of Nesles, count of Soissons (d. 1178) are still extant. In the early phases of this documentary production, Count Ivo sealed sporadically, but he began to seal regularly in charters involving Joscelin, bishop of Soissons.66 Prior to becoming a bishop, Joscelin (d. 1152) had taught theology in Paris.67 Attention to the conception and production of sealed charters situate them within the scholarly world described at the beginning of this chapter as being in the throes of a semiotic crisis. The scriptoria and writing bureaus that initiated the sustained production of sealed charters appear to have been located in abbeys or cathedrals that either 63 An overview of the main historiographical trends in sigillographic studies is given in Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique: Sceau et ressemblance en France préscolastique (1000–1200),” Etudes d’histoire de l’art offertes à Jacques Thirion. Des premiers temps chrétien au XXe siècle, ed. Alain Erlande-Brandenburg et Jean-Michel Leniaud (Paris, 2001), pp. 39–50, at pp. 40–42, and Bedos-Rezak. “Medieval Identity: A Sign and a Concept,” American Historical Review 105/5 (2000), pp. 1489– 1533, at pp. 1511–1516. 64 See chapter 3 above at pp. XX [complete on galley proofs] for a full discussion of these contexts limited explanatory power. 65 See chapter 3 above. 66 The charters have been published by Newman, Les seigneurs de Nesles en Picardie, vol. 2, pp. 27–161. Count Ivo’s unsealed charters, no. 7, p. 34, ca. 1141; no. 15, p. 44, in 1146; sealed charters: no. 12, p. 40, in 1145; no. 13, p. 42, in 1145. 67 Léon A. Maître, Les écoles épiscopales et monastiques de l’occident depuis Charlemagne jusqu’à Philippe Auguste, 768–1180 (Paris, 1866), p. 153.

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currently had in residence or had trained those schoolmen who were active participants in debates about signs and signification in relation to three theological concerns. To reiterate, these were the eucharist and the related subjects of presence and representation; the Trinity and the related issues of person, identity, image, and resemblance; and the authority of script(ure) and the issue of the referentiality of language. Since the maps tracing seal diffusion and prescholastic theological reflections on sign theory are largely coterminous, it may be the case that the seal derived its new means of signification, especially its capacity to present and represent, from the discourses of semiotics and theology. I propose to interpret the extension of sealing as a manifestation of a new semiotics in which, as already discussed, immanence rather than transcendence governed the rapport between signifier and signified, thereby making possible new forms for the representation of reality. This new semiotics emerged from the context of an increasing, though initially contested, acceptance of God’s incarnation as a hermeneutic axial point. The eucharistic motif had now become the foundation of a representational model articulated around the theme of “real presence.” While seals’ agentive valence in representing their owners owed much to this eucharistic debate, the principles and modes of their operation as a sign of identify may also be situated in prescholastic ideas about the nature of personhood, since it was part of the new semiotic conception that a sign be representative through its capacity to embody the ontological characteristics of its referent. Among the conceptual tools chancery scholars used to address the issue of personhood was the seal as metaphor. I find it suggestive that the same prescholastic milieus that promoted changes in semiotic thinking, that entertained concerns about representation, authority, and personal identity, and that produced the novel medium of the sealed charter as a solution to these concerns are the very ones that resorted to the seal metaphor to clarify these concerns. There apparently was no precedence of the metaphorical seal over the documentary seal, and there may be little advantage in trying to explicate one by reference to the other, but it is undeniable that both cover the same semantic territory, organizing and thereby elucidating contemporary views of identity. In the spheres of both discourse and practice, the seal, linking the divine and the human, was centered precisely on persons, their agency and representation, and their personal relationships to others, to God, and to script.

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The seal metaphor was not new in Christian discourse and liturgy of the eleventh and twelfth centuries,68 but its semantic range was now extended. Seal metaphors facilitated discussions on the relational presence of the divine persons—Father, Son, Holy Spirit—within the Trinity, of the Son in Man, and of the Son in God the Father. Such metaphors were used particularly in discussing image and resemblance, first between the Creator and his Son, who was engendered and not created, and second between the Creator and his creature, the human being. As the body of seal metaphors is vast, I will present and discuss here only a few representative examples.69

68 The seal metaphor precedes Christian discourse. On its occurrence in late ancient philosophy, see Stephen Gersh, From Iamblichus to Eriugena: An Investigation of the Prehistory and Evolution of the Pseudo-Dionysian Tradition (Leiden, 1978), p. 236; Verity Platt, “Making an Impression: Replication and the Ontology of the Graeco-Roman Seal Stone,” Art History 29 (2006), pp. 233–257, at pp. 245-249; Manetti, Theories of the Sign, p. 6, gives the example of the seal as a Mesopotamian divinatory sign: “If a man dreams that someone gives him a seal—he will have a son.” See further examples of ancient near Eastern seal metaphors in Elena Cassin, “Le sceau: Un fait de civilization dans la Mésopotamie ancienne,” Annales E.S.C.15 (1960), pp. 742–751. The seal metaphor is also found in Plato, Aristotle, and Cicero, serving as model for the process of making and storing the memorial phantasm; see Mary Carruthers, The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture (Cambridge, 1990), esp. pp. 16–32, 33, 49, 62, 72, and 291 n. 5; and Manetti, Theories of the Sign, p. 54. Another ancient use of the sealing metaphor is in the field of anatomy to explain the physiological mechanism of conception; it articulated the Aristotelian contrast between form and matter; see Danielle Jacquart and Claude Thomasset, Sexuality and Medicine in the Middle Ages (Princeton, 1988), p. 37. The seal metaphor appears in both the Old and the New Testaments (the Apocalypse comes preeminently to mind), and in patristic texts, where it principally concerns the baptismal rite: Jean Danielou, The Bible and the Liturgy (Notre Dame, 1956), chap. 3, is entirely devoted to “Sphragis” (Greek: seal); Geoffrey W.H. Lampe, The Seal of the Spirit: A Study in the Doctrine of Baptism and Confirmation in the New Testament and the Fathers, 2nd ed. (London, 1967). The seal metaphor was also used in Byzantine theology, by Theodore of Studios (759–826) for instance, to explain that an icon derives power from its representational identity with its archetype, but is otherwise an unsubstantial image “existing between, and independent of, the sealing die and malleable medium into which the die is pressed.” Gary Vikan, “Ruminations on Edible Icons: Originals and Copies in the Art of Byzantium,” in Retaining the Original: Multiple Originals, Copies, and Reproductions, ed. Kathleen Preciado (Washington, D.C., 1989), pp. 47–59, at pp. 50–52. I wish to thank Dr. James Trilling for bringing Vikan’s article to my attention. Theodore of Studios’ seal metaphors receive further attention in chapter 7 at notes 25–27. See below n. 73 for a discussion of the relationship between seal and coin metaphors. 69 In order to establish a typology of the seal metaphor in prescholastic texts, I began with the numerous instances gathered and analyzed by Javelet in his monumental Image et ressemblance. I also searched the CD-ROM of the CETEDOC Library of Christian Latin Texts (CLCLT-3) ed. Paul Tombeur (Turnhout, 1996), and the Patrologia Latina Database (PLD, Chadwick-Healy) containing the electronic version of the entire

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When Abelard wished to demonstrate that the Trinity can be discussed in logical terms, he identified as a principal conundrum the question of unity (the Godhead) in diversity (the three persons of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), and in proceeding to address this question articulated the main thrust of his theological argument through a seal metaphor: Quinque autem modis ac pluribus fortassis utrumque per se etiam acceptum dici uidetur. ‘Idem’ namque siue unum aliquid cum aliquo dicitur secundum essentiam siue secundum numerum, idem proprietate, idem definitione, idem similitudine, idem pro incommunicato. Totidem modis e contrario dicimus ‘diversum’ ac fortassis pluribus… Nonnulla autem essentialiter eadem sunt quae tamen proprietatibus suis distinguuntur, cum eorum scilicet proprietates ita penitus impermixtae maneant, ut proprietas alterius ab altero minime participetur, etiamsi sit eadem numero penitus utriusque substantia. . . . Ipsa quippe materia cereae imaginis et ipsum materiatum, utpote ipsa cera et ipsa imago

contents of the 221 volumes of J.-P. Migne’s Patrologia Latina. Several articles in the Bulletin de philosophic médiévale (34 [1992], pp. 39–53; 35 [1993], pp. 220–228; 36 [1994], pp. 206–214) address the advantages and disadvantages of PLD; Ron W. Crown compared the PLD and the CLCLT: “Comparing the Patrologia Latina and the CETEDOC Library of Christian Latin Texts Databases from a User’s Perspective,” Journal of Religious & Theological Information 3 (2000), pp. 85–109. There is as yet no general synthesis of the medieval use of the seal metaphor, although this usage has been noted by several scholars: Bynum, Jesus as Mother, pp. 16, 17, 97–98, 194, 210; Carruthers, Book of Memory, pp. 55–57, 71, 180, 304 n. 49, 307 n. 119; Giles Constable, “Renewal and Reform in Religious Life,” in Renaissance and Renewal in the Twelfth Century, pp. 37–67, at p. 46; Constable, Three Studies, pp. 189, 192, 214–15, 217; Michael Goodich, From Birth to Old Age: The Human Life Cycle in Medieval Thought (Lanham, 1989), pp. 93–94; J. Jolivet, “Sur quelques critiques de la théologie d’Abélard,” Archives d’histoire doctrinale et littéraire du moyen âge 38 (1963), pp. 7–51, at pp. 29–31; André Pézard, “Le sceau d’or: Dante, Abélard, Saint Augustin,” Studi danteschi 45 (1968), pp. 29–93, at pp. 33–40, 54–65; Marenbon, Philosophy of Peter Abelard, pp. 152, 178–79; Rachel Fulton, From Judgment to Passion. Devotion to Christ and the Virgin Mary (New York, 2002), pp. 254–265, where the author reviews the neo-testamentary and patristic use of seal metaphors before engaging the significance of the metaphor as used by Honorius Augustodunensis in his Sigillum sanctae Mariae. Seal imagery was first extended to the obligation of keeping secret that which has been revealed in sacramental confession by Nicolas of Clairvaux, St. Bernard’s secretary, in Sermo in festo sancti Beato Andreae, PL CLXXXIV, cols. 1054A–1054B: ‘Videat autem ne unquam de his quae sub signaculo confessionis accepit, aliquam faciat mentionem, vel alicui loquenti consentiat.’ Nicolas’ sermon was erroneously attributed to Peter Damianus, PL CXLIV, col. 833C. Peter the Chanter introduced the term sigillum: munitissimum est sigillum confessionis (De sacramentis, BNF, Ms. Lat. 14445, fol. 200 ro.). Léon Honoré, Le secret de la confession: Etude historico-canonique (Bruges, 1924), pp. 45–47; Bertrand Kurtscheid, A History of the Seal of Confession (St. Louis, 1927), p. 111.

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chapter six cerea sunt eadem cera, haec scilicet cera; sed tamen ipsum materiatum ibi nequaquam est materia, nec ipsa materia est materiata, licet ea res est quae materiata. Identity and diversity may be described in five, and perhaps more, ways. There is identity if a thing exists entirely with another thing, that is, by essence and number. There is identity secondly, in property; thirdly, by definition; fourthly, by likeness; and fifthly, by incommunicability, when a thing never changes into anything else. We can say things are identical in these five ways, and by contrary we can say that they are diverse in these five ways; that is, if the conditions of identity are not fulfilled then the things are diverse . . . Things may be identical in essence and number, but not identical in property or proper character. This may be the case even when their substance is the same, their proper functions alone making a fundamental distinction between them. . . . A wax image, for instance, may be identical in essence and number with the wax of which it is made. But there is no interrelation between the proper character of wax which is one thing, and the proper character of an image, which is another thing.70

Building on his demonstration that the wax and the waxen image are essentially the same but not the same by property and definition, and reusing the same metaphor, Abelard demonstrates the simultaneity of the identity of the triune God and of the difference between the persons of the Father and his begotten Son. Ponamus ergo ante oculos ceream imaginem et consideremus in ea ipsa naturam cerae, hoc est ipsam ceream substantiam, ex qua est imago cerea iuxta philosophos tanquam materiatum ex materia, cum tamen eadem essentia sit cera ipsa et imago cerea, ut etiam per praedicationem sibi sociari queant cera ipsa et imago ipsa et dici possit quod imago cerea sit ipsa. Nec tamen ideo minus dicamus ceream imaginem esse ex cera, non ceram ex cerea imagine, et ceram ipsam esse materiam cereae imaginis, non ceream imaginem esse materiam ipsius cerae aut cereae imaginis. Et rursus imaginem ceream dicimus esse materiatam ex ipsa cera, neque ipsam ceram aut ipsam imaginem esse materiatam ex cerea imagine. In qua quidem re considerandum est quod si ea nomina ipsius ‘cerae’ et ‘cereae imaginis’ accipiamus, quae absolute non relatiue dicuntur,

70 Theologia Christiana, III. 138, 140; Latin text can be found in Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. II: Theologia Christiana, ed. Buytaert, pp. 247–248 (PL CLXXVIII, cols. 1247D and 1248B); the English translation is from McCallum, Abelard’s Christian Theology, p. 75. On Abelard’s Theologiae, see note 45 above. I return to a more detailed analysis of Abelard’s seal metaphors in Bedos-Rezak, “Semiotic Anthropology. The Twelfth Century Experiment,” European Transformations 950–1200, Thomas F.X. Noble and John Van Engen, ed. (Notre Dame, forthcoming). See also chapter 7 here, at note 65.

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licet ea per praedicationem sibi ueraciter coniungi propter identitatem substantiae ipsius cerae et cereae imaginis, ueluti cum cera ipsa sit crocea et imago sit recta, unum est ipsum croceum et rectum, uel e conuerso. Si uera ea sumamus nomina quae secundum ipsam generationem aut constitutionem cereae imaginis ex cera relatiue ad inuicem dicuntur, utpote materia et materiatum, siue constituens et constitutum, siue causa et effectus, siue generans et genitum, non licet ea secundum suas proprietates sibi per praedicationem sociari, ut uidelicet dicamus ibi ipsam materiam esse materiatum, uel ipsum materiatum esse materiam, etc. Quod si huius similitudinis rationem ad diuinam generationem reducamus, facile est ibi cuncta assignare ac defendere quae audimus. Ponamus itaque Deum Patrem, ut supra meminimus, diuinam potentiam ac Deum Filium diuinam sapientiam, et consideremus quod ipsa sapientia quaedam sit potentia, cum sit ipsa uidelicet potentia discernendi ac prouidendi seu deliberandi ueraciter omnia, ne quid Deum decipere possit aut latere. Est igitur diuina sapientia ex diuina potentia quomodo cerea imago est ex cera, aut quomodo iuxta philosophos species ipsa ex genere esse dicitur, cum tamen idem sit species quod genus, ut homo idem quod animal et imago cerea idem quod cera. Ipsa quippe imago cerea ita est ex cera et ipse homo ex animali, quod ex eo quod est cerea imago exigit ut cera sit, et ex eo quod homo est ut sit animal; sed non e conuerso. Sic et ex eo quod est sapientia, hoc est potentia discernendi, exigit ut sit potentia, sed non e conuerso. Potentia quipped, tam ad discernendum quam ad alia agenda, se habet sicut cerea imago, et animal tam ad hominem quam ad non hominem. Est itaque ‘Filium gigni a Patre’ diuinam Sapientiam ita, ut determinatum est, ex divina Potentia esse. Look at a waxen image. Consider that in it is the mixture of wax: that is, the wax itself as substance. From this wax, the image becomes, in philosophical language, materialized out of material. The same essence is both the wax itself and the wax image. We can predicate of the wax that it is the image, and of the image that it is the wax. Nonetheless, it is also true to say that the waxen image is from the wax. But the wax is not from the waxen image. The wax itself is, however, the material of the image. The waxen image is not the material either of the wax or of itself. Again, we can assert that the image was realized out of the wax of which it is composed. Yet neither the wax itself nor the image itself were composed simply out of the image. Now if we take these names of wax and waxen image absolutely, not relatively to one another, we can assert anything of them that will be true of both because the substance is identical. I mean, for instance, if the wax is yellow and the image an upright figure, then the thing is yellow and upright throughout. If, however, we take the names relatively, in respect, that is, of the generation or composition of the waxen image, thinking of them as the material and the thing materialized from this material, as cause and effect, or the begetter and the begotten, then we cannot link them in respect of their particular functions by a

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chapter six predicating adjective. We cannot say that the material is the same as the thing materialized from it etc. Apply this comparison to the divine generation and my position is clear. God, the Father, is the divine Power; God, the son, is divine Wisdom. Now divine Wisdom is a kind of power, since it is the ability to discern and foresee and deliberate aright against anything that may deceive God. Hence divine Wisdom coming from divine Power is a sort of waxen image out of wax. Philosophically, it is a species of genus. The species is the same as the genus, as a man is the same as an “animal,” or a waxen image the same as wax. The wax image is from wax as man is from animal. I mean that, in so far as it is a wax image it must be wax, just as in so far as a man is a man, he must be an animal. But the contrary is not true. Power, therefore of discernment and doing all kinds of things may be considered like wax which has potentially either to be a wax image or anything else: or, as the animal species, which may be a man or any other animal. This is my illustration to show that, when the son is begotten of the Father, I mean that divine Wisdom is from divine Power as I have explained.71

Both these passages clearly articulate a concept of identity as a principle of sameness and also a product of the polarization between similar and dissimilar, and a concept of property (that is, definition, or proper character) as that which both characterizes and distinguishes the person. The seal metaphor in these passages specifically addresses two points. First, there is priority of the material (or substance or essence) over the image. Second, there may be diversity by virtue of definition (or property) when things are identical in essence and number. The prescholastic semiotic of mimetism afforded not only an economy of signification but also a differential principle of being. It defined a human person as existing by virtue of relationships of origin, as identical in the sense of its similarity to humanity (species) but distinct with respect to properties in relationship to others. Yet it was neither perfect identicality nor absolute distinctiveness but rather comparative likeness—difference in essence, number, and properties—that was

71 Theologia Christiana , IV. 86–88; Latin text is in Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. II: Theologia Christiana, ed. Buytaert, pp. 306–307 (PL CLXXVIII, cols. 1288C–1289A; English translation from McCallum, Abelard’s Christian Theology, pp. 85–86. I am indebted to Marenbon, Philosophy of Peter Abelard, pp. 151–152, for a lucid discussion of Abelard’s use of the seal metaphor. Also valuable were Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, p. 142 and vol. 2, p. 115; McCallum, Abelard’s Christian Theology, pp. 75–77; Mews, “Introduction,” in Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III: Theologia ‘Summi Boni,’ Theologia ‘Scholarium,’ pp. 204, 207–209, 220.

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emphasized. Human personhood and identity were thus formulated both in relation to God (essence) and to other human beings (number and properties). As such, the concept of the person that developed in the twelfth century, modulating likeness to reveal heterogeneity, was of a unique psychosomatic unit expressing a distinct identity as both flesh and spirit, capable of representation for the purpose of activity in the world.72 Prescholastics, in their ontological exploration, privileged an exegetical approach that, borrowing from Neo-Platonic readings of Genesis, presented the human being as created in the image of God so as ultimately to be transformed into his resemblance.73 In this sense, identity consisted of a God-like image within the human fabric. Here, the metaphor of sealing was recurrently used to evoke the imprint of the divine archetype on the human raw material. Commentaries on Genesis 1:26 (God made man in his image and likeness) from the School of Laon, from Abelard, and from the canons of St. Victor contemplated just how human beings might be said to be “in the image and likeness of God” when they have no common property with God. Using the seal metaphor, the commentators determined that the human soul in God’s image is different from the Son who is in God’s

72 While in the early twelfth century, such theologians as Hugh of St. Victor and Robert of Melun held that the person is a soul using a body, Hugh actually treated the human being as an entity composed of body and soul, and by the middle of the century schoolmen understood a person to be a psychosomatic entity; Caroline Walker Bynum, The Resurrection of the Body in Western Christianity, 200–1336 (New York, 1995), pt. 2, esp. pp. 127–28, 135, 166, 225, and 256; this study systematically tracks the medieval ideas of person, self, and individual by analyzing the theological arguments about bodily resurrection. On the changing connotations of the term and concept of “person” from antiquity to the modern period, see the recent survey by O’Hara, Logic of Human Personality. See above notes 1–5 for letters expected by their authors to represent, and to act in place of, their persona. See below note 82 for studies on the relationship between the concept of person and personal intention. 73 The classical study, based on a wide array of theological texts, many of which contain seal metaphors, is Javelet, Image et resemblance. When discussing man’s likeness to God, Augustine used the metaphor of the coin: Wirth, “Structure et fonctions de l’image chez saint Thomas d’ Aquin,” p. 41; Mews, “Introduction,” in Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III: Theologia ‘Summi Boni,’ Theologia ‘Scholarium,’ p. 208. In the writings of eleventh and twelfth-century chancery-scholars, the metaphor of the seal governs discussions of resemblance, generation, and creation. Thirteenth-century theologians, such as Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas, seem to reintroduce the numismatic metaphor in handling these questions: Courtenay, “King and the Leaden Coin.” See a demonstration of the assimilation of medieval economics to a general theory of signs in R. Howard Bloch, Etymologies and Genealogies: A Literary Anthropology of the French Middle Ages (Chicago, 1983), pp. 164–174.

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image, in proportion to the difference between the king’s image on a seal and the king’s generated image in his son.74 Only the engendered image (the Son), which shares properties and is consubstantial with its model, may be equal to it: only the Son is the image of God. The created image (Man), on the other hand, bears only an analogy to its model: the human being is in the image of God. Abelard and the School of Laon were concerned, however, to reconcile transcendence and immanence, and so insisted on the presence of God within the begotten Son and, through the Son, within the created human being as well. Here again, Abelard and the Laon scholars resorted to another seal metaphor, this time involving the die, its image, and its imprint. God is the seal’s inherent material (the substance of its die or matrix); the Son is the figure of God’s substance, the image of God engraved in the matrix, which in turn imprints itself on the human soul (reason, heart, memory),75 enabling that soul to be configured as the Son. In this sense,

74 In the words of the Victorine Robert of Melun: “quae tamen distat ab imagine Dei quae Deus est quantum imago regis quae in sigillo ejus est ab imagine quae in ejus filio est,” who adds: “thus, although the human soul shares no common property with God, it is not inappropriate to say that the human soul has been created in the image and resemblance of God.” This passage comes from Robert’s Sententiae, Bruges, Bibliothèque de la Ville, Cod. lat. 191, fols. 186vo.–187ro.; see Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, p. 41. I wish to thank the anonymous reader who provided the superb English translation used here as part of his or her review of this chapter. 75 The text of the School of Laon is given by Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, pp. 46–47 at note 61. Abelard’s text comes from from Theologia “Scholarium” [Introductio ad Theologiam II, 13, PL CLXXVIII, col. 1068D], Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III: Theologia “Summi Boni” and Theologia “Scholarum,” pp. 462–463: Quomodo autem philosophi hanc personarum distinctionem in una diuinitatis essentia, per similitudinem alicuius mundane creature, et eorum que in ipsa sunt creatura uestigare poterunt atque inuenire, facile, credo, poterit assignari in his que ex materia et forma, uel ad similitudinem materie et forme dixerunt consistere. Valida similutudo ex philosophis sumpta. Verbi causa, es quoddam est inter creaturas, in quo artifex operans et imaginis regie formam exprimens regium facit sigillum, quod scilicet ad sigillandas litteras, cum opus fuerit, cere imprimatur . Est igitur in sigillo illo ipsum es material ex quo factum est, figura uero ipsa imaginis regie forma eius, ipsum uero sigillum ex his duobus materiatum atque formatum dicitur, quibus uidelicet sibi convenientibus ipsum est compositum atque perfectum. This text is discussed in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 82–83, vol. 2, pp. 46–47. Peter Lombard (d. 1160), who attended the School of St. Victor before becoming chancellor and master at Notre-Dame of Paris, and ultimately bishop of Paris, wrote in his commentaries on the Psalms (Commentarius in Psalmos Davidicos, 4.7, PL CXCI, col. 88A): “The radiance of your face, that is, the radiance of your grace through which your image is formed in us, thanks to which we are similar to you, this radiance is signed upon us, it is impressed on our reason, which animates the soul with a superior force by which we resemble God, upon reason this radiance is imprinted,

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the human being is created as an image, imprinted through the medium of divine substance but sharing no substantial affinity with it, unlike the Son, whose image is consubstantially figured of divine substance. The human creature, conceived as sealed and therefore as replicated image, is ontologically constituted to participate in its informing prototype, capable of tending toward the prototype’s realization. In terms of seal metaphors, human identity is about creation, impression, oppression, and reformation. Creation is the process by which Man is made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26). Impression, that is, the soul formed and signed by the seal of God, expresses the human capacity for good. Oppression, that is, an opposition to or the breaking of God’s seal through Man’s sinfulness, involves dissimilarity and alienation.76 Reformation presents the hope that likeness to God is an end capable of human accomplishment. Personal formation and reformation are fundamental processes of human identity that Hugh

like a seal to wax.” Quoted in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, pp. 142–143 note 32, and discussed in vol. 1, p. 173, together with texts from Anselm’s School of Laon, which also emphasize the imprint of God’s image within human fabric. See also the commentaries by Gerhoh of Reichersberg (d. 1169) on the Psalms in Commentarius aureus in Psalmos et Cantica ferialia, II. 30 (PL CXCIII, cols. 1306D–1307A). Glossing the verse “illustra faciem tuam super servum tuum,” Gerhoh wrote: “hanc faciem tuam illustra super me servum tuum, et super alium quemlibet servum tuum. Tu es quasi aurea substantia, et filius tuus cum sit splendor gloriae et figura substantiae tuae, tanquam regalis aut pontificalis imago in auro purissimo exhibet se ipsum pro incorruptibili sigillo cuilibet servo suo sibi conformando se imprimens. Tuque, Pater, hoc ipsum sigillationis opus per ipsum, et cum ipso, et in ipso perficis in servis tuis eidem filio configurandis.” For a further analysis of these texts, see chapter 7 below, at note 65. 76 On the image of the broken seal used by Abelard, Achard of St. Victor, Thomas of Citeaux, and Bernard of Clairvaux to signify alienation and dissimilarity from God, see Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 249, 259, 300–01, 312–13; vol. 2, pp. 214, 218, 220, 256. Abelard framed his discussion of the destruction and reformation of God’s image in man in terms of the seal metaphor: Theologia Scholarium II, 14, PL CLXXVIII, col. 1073CD, and Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III: Theologia “Summi Boni” and Theologia “Scholarum,” p. 478: Non tamen ideo ullo modo materiam uel materiatum in deo concedimus esse, sed in creaturis tantum uel mutabilibus rebus que sunt accidentium susceptibiles. Sicut uero sigillans, eo ipso quo sigillans est, in aliud quoddam mollius cui imprimitur procedit, ut uidelicet eius imaginis, que in ipsa eius substantia iam erat, formam illi tribuat, sic spiritus sanctus donorum suorum distributione nobis infusus imaginem dei deletam in nobis reformat, ut iuxta apostolum, conformes efficiamur imaginis filii dei [Rom. VIII, 29], id est Christo, ut uidelicet sequamur vestigia eius, qui peccatum non fecit [I Petr. II, 21, 22], et de ueteri homine in nouum transeamus. For a further analysis of these texts, see Bedos-Rezak, “Semiotic Anthropology. The Twelfth Century Experiment.”

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of St. Victor, among others, discussed, resorting frequently to the seal metaphor, as in this striking passage from the De institutione: In good men the form of the likeness of God is engraved, and when through the process of imitation we are pressed against that likeness, we too are molded according to the image of that likeness. But you must know that unless the wax is first softened, it cannot receive the form, and this also, a man can not be kneaded to the form of virtue through the hand of another’s actions, unless he is softened and all pride and stiff-necked contrariness removed . . . Why do you think we are enjoined to imitate the life and conduct of good men, unless it be that by imitating them we are reformed to the likeness of a new life? For in them the form of the likeness of God is expressed, and when we impress ourselves on them through imitation, then we too are reshaped according to the image of that same likeness.77

Ego to Imago Paralleling their seal metaphors, the prescholastics who were fostering the new semiotics displayed in their own chanceries a predilection for visibility centered on the concept of an imprinted image at once generated by the principles of likeness and linked to a model. In non-royal charters, the motif of visibility had previously engaged only a single modality of representation, the symbolic, constructed by linguistic signs arranged as a discourse. With seals, a second, iconic modality was introduced, where representation was achieved by lines and figures arranged as images. In fact, the linguistic and iconic modes were both

77 Jaeger’s translation in Envy of Angels, pp. 258–259; Hugh of Saint-Victor, De institutione novitiorum liber, prol. and chap. 7, in L’œuvre de Hugues de SaintVictor, ed. Hugh Bernard Feiss et al., 2 vols. (Turnhout, 1997), vol. 1, pp. (PL CLXXVI, cols. 925B–C, 932D–933A). See Bynum’s pioneering analysis of Hugh’s seal metaphor addressing the education of novices in Jesus as Mother, pp. 97–98; the remarks by Carruthers, Book of Memory, pp. 71 and 307 note 119; and Constable, “Renewal and Reform,” p. 46. According to his biographer Eadmer, Anselm of Bec also used the seal metaphor for moral education; Eadmer, Life of Saint Anselm, ed. and trans. Richard W. Southern (London, 1962), pp. 20–21. In De similitudinibus, PL CLIX, col. 695, Anselm stated that youth is like a piece of wax, which must be the right consistency, between hardness and softness, in order to receive a perfect impression; see Goodich, From Birth to Old Age, p. 93. Anselm also resorted to this trope for the expression of passionate friendship in addressing one of his correspondents: “He who is imprinted in my heart like a seal on wax, how could he be removed from my memory?” Epistola I.4, PL CLVIII, cols. 1068–69, quoted by John Boswell, Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality (Chicago, 1980), p. 218.

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present on the seal itself—the legend (text) and the type (image)— but the essence of their representative power came from their being produced as imprints. That a seal represents by being an object whose marked matter has become graven form is crucial in terms of prescholastic semiotics. The seal metaphors previously discussed suggest that an imprint, by virtue of containing the trace of an origin in its very matter, is a sign forever indicating a radical presence, for instance, that of God in human beings. The very act of seal imprinting both articulated and dramatized these principles of marking origin and materializing presence. Sealers sometimes went so far as to impress parts of their own bodies on the waxen seal: toothmarks, fingerprints, bits of hair or beard.78 In the very act of impressing die on wax, the seal blended with its referent (the sealer), the written text with its enunciating subject (again, the sealer). In terms of prescholastic ontology, both seals and sealers were imprints carrying within their very matter the mark of an original. The seal, thereby participating in an existential relation with the sealer it represented, became an efficacious sign, a power. Thus was the seal enabled to confer on the document

78 There are no extant sources describing the eleventh and twelfth-century ceremonials of seal imprinting. The only evidence of such imprinting comes from the seal impressions themselves and from clauses within the texts of the charters that announce the affixation of seals, as for instance in a charter by Guy of Garlande confirming the sale of a wood to the abbey of St. Victor in 1170: “Quod ut ratum atque firmissimum habeatur, ego Guido presens scriptum sigilli mei impressione corroborari feci”; Cartulaire général de Paris, Vol. 1, pp. 528–1180, ed. Robert de Lasteyrie (Paris, 1887), no. 478, pp. 402–403. The corpus of charters given in the name of the counts of Ponthieu between 1026 and 1279 indicates a preference in early charters for announcing the application of the seal by the formula sigilli impressione, which insists on the imprinting process. This formula came to be replaced in later charters by such expressions as sigilli appensione or sigilli appositione, which focus on the affixation of the seal to the charter; Brunel, Pontieu, p. LI note 13, where Brunel gives a typology of the various documentary clauses announcing the seal. For the centrality of the imprinting mechanism in seal signification, see chapter 7 below, where is also discussed, at notes 100–101, the inscription of bodily imprints upon seals. Few seals still retain traces of fingerprints, teeth, and beard; see examples in Alphonse Chassant and P.-J. Delbarre, Dictionnaire de sigillographie pratique (Paris, 1860), pp. 19–20, 147–149, esp. p. 20, where is given the final clause of a charter of 1121 that reads: “Quod ut ratum . . . perseveret . . . presenti scripto sigilli mei robur apposui cum tribus pilis barbae meae;” “In order for this [agreement] to remain ratified, I have affixed the force of my seal with three hairs from my beard.” For further references to and analysis of the imprinting mechanism and bodily imprints on seals, see B. Bedos-Rezak, “In Search of a Semiotic Paradigm. The Matter of Sealing in Medieval Thought and Praxis (1050–1400),” Good Impressions. Image and Authority in Medieval Seals, ed. John Cherry and James Robinson, (London, 2008; British Museum, Occasional Paper series), pp. 1–7.

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its own authority, transforming the document into a monument, which is the name by which sealed charters came to be known during the twelfth century.79 In a manner analogous to Hosts imprinted with a cross, the letters IHS, and, from the twelfth century onward, a crucifixion scene or the lamb of God, seals not only mediated but embodied the real presence of the individuals who affixed them. Seals allowed simultaneous presence and representation. Their mode of signification was through incarnation. The ritual process of sealing also involved a transformation of substance: it fused two quite different spaces, the locus on the parchment where the affixed seal affirms that ego was there and the physical location where the documentary sealing took place in the presence of witnesses. Above all, sealing changed a written leaf of parchment into a monument. This occurred by authorizing writing, that is, by incorporating the author into the text. Seals were the incarnation of the ego of diplomatic discourse, marking the charter so that it acquired substance and body. However, although seals and the eucharist participated in a common semiotic logic, seals fell short of sacrality. Their relationship to script occurred at the lower margin of the page: the ego of the author-donor-sealer and his mark are not so much within the text but in consubstantial relationship to it. From Identity to Stereotype Seals represented individuals and, by personifying their owners, personalized the written word. From a graphic viewpoint, however, there is a tension in seals between individualization and categorization. The text of a seal’s legend contains the individual’s baptismal name but also both a title (king, count, bishop) and the entity or group ruled, underscoring the fact that identity was articulated primarily around

79 Documents came to be seen as monument and as “ammunition:” Fraenkel, La signature, pp. 17–18, specifically discusses the semantic kinship and ultimate fusion between monimentum/monumentum (monument or memorial) and munimentum/ munitio (ammunition, fortification), which I noted in B. Bedos-Rezak, “Secular Administration,” Medieval Latin Studies: An Introduction and Bibliographical Guide, Frank Mantello and A.G. Rigg, eds. (Washington, D.C., 1997), pp. 199–229, at p. 201; and see Olivier Guyotjeannin, “Le vocabulaire de la diplomatique en latin médiéval: Noms de l’acte, mise par écrit, tradition, critique, conservation,’’ in Vocabulaire du livre et de l’écriture au Moyen Age: Actes de la table ronde, Paris 24–26 September 1987, ed. Olga Weijers (Turnhout, 1989; Etudes sur le vocabulaire intellectuel du Moyen Age 2), pp. 119–134, at p. 123.

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function and its territorial or ethnic circumscription. The legend is obviously the part of the seal that individualized its owner (fig. 19). The image of the sealer placed on seals was anthropomorphic, though not a realistic portrait. I described earlier how the ritual of sealing, of imprinting, was itself significant in achieving presence and representation and was often enhanced by bodily marks as part of the imprinting process. Yet it was also true that a donor might utilize another person’s seal to seal a charter given in his own name; the text in such cases would duly record the act of borrowing the seal, whereupon the document produced was considered properly sealed and authorized.80 This specific manipulation indicates, in my opinion, that the generic gesture of sealing was also effective in committing and representing an individual, as might be expected of a bodily participation within a ceremonial culture. It also points to the importance of the spirit, that is, of the intention to seal, the animus signandi; for intention was the seal’s intellectual and spiritual element, an important part of both seal and sealing. Intention was made explicit in a clause within the document’s text announcing the affixation of the seal, as well as through the personal gesture of sealing.81 The referential category engaged by seals and sealing is, therefore, a physical person who is ethical and accountable, and endowed with personal intentionality.82

80 See, for instance, this Norman charter of 1215: “Notum sit omnibus quod ego Guillermus de Brueriis dedi Deo et beate Marie de Strata quatuor sextaria bladi annuatim habenda in terris meis de Brueriis in perpetuam elemosinam . . . et quia sigillum non habebam presens scriptum sigilli Johannis, tunc temporis vicedecani, roboravi;” “Let it be known to all that I, William of Bruyères, gave as eternal alms four setters of wheat to be received annually on my land of Bruyères to God and to Notre-Dame de L’Etrée . . . And since I did not have a seal I strengthened the present writing with the seal of John, then vice-dean.” Archives départementales, Eure, fonds de l’Etrée, quoted in Chassant and Delbarre, Dictionnaire de sigillographie, pp. 177–178. 81 Guillaume, count of Ponthieu (d. 1129), sealed an agreement with the prior of St. Peter of Abbeville, pointing out that he had committed himself by speech as he had signed with his seal, and with his name and the names of his wife and children. The crosses accompanying the names were probably autograph, although the fact cannot be established with certainty since the charter is extant only as a fifteenth-century copy; Brunel, Pontieu, no. 21, pp. 35–37. 82 For different though complementary approaches to the relationship between person, personal intention, and concrete worldview, see Léopold Génicot, “Valeur de la personne ou sens du concret,” in Miscellanea Mediaevalia in memoriam Jan Frederik Niermeyer (Groningen, 1967), pp. 1–8; and O. Guillot, “La liberté des nobles et des roturiers dans la France du XIe siècle: L’exemple de leur soumission à la justice,” in La notion de liberté au Moyen Age: Islam, Byzance, Occident (Paris, 1985), pp. 155– 167. See above note 72 for the changing connotations of the term and concept of “person.”

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Depictions of the body on seals are, as I have noted, nonrealistic, which is not to say that they did not function as a form of portrait within the medieval rules of figuration. Realism is, after all, simply a convention, and one that the Middle Ages did not equate or associate with physiognomic likeness.83 In the charters themselves, authors refer to their seals as their own image, imago noster, which reveals that seals and their depictions incorporated elements meaningful to selfrepresentation.84 Realistic physiognomy was not privileged; emblems of function and symbols of kinship were. Kings were shown in royal garb and posture (Figs. 6, 12, 16), nobles as warriors (Figs. 1, 7, 18, 19, 20, 21), and bishops (Figs. 4, 9) in episcopal array. Heraldry, from the mid-twelfth century onward, served as an iconographic rhetoric that expressed the identity of a kindred in relation to other groups, to its own land, and to its separate sub-branches (Fig. 20). From an

83 Medieval art is traditionally associated with the devaluation of individual likeness, a product of nature, and with a preference for symbolizing an individual being in terms of the “truth” of a general type of image; Belting, Likeness and Presence, p. 132. The realism or naturalism associated with classical art has, however, been questioned by Erich S. Gruen, “The Roman Oligarchy: Image and Perception,” Imperium sine fine: T. Robert S. Broughton and the Roman Republic, ed. Jerzy Linderski (Stuttgart, 1996), pp. 215–234, who proposes (at pp. 220–222) that while Roman portraits are veristic, their purpose was not to reproduce a particular face but to convey a stylistic image. I wish to thank Arthur Eckstein for acquainting me with this essay. 84 Many examples may be cited from the episcopal charters of Reims, Cambrai, and Laon, and from royal and aristocratic charters produced in episcopal chanceries; see Jean Dufour, Recueil des actes de Louis VI, roi de France (1108–1137), 4 vols. (Paris, 1992), vol. 1, no. 180, pp. 373–375: Laon, 1121, King Louis VI confirms an exchange of properties between Barthélémy of Joux, bishop of Laon, and the Cistercian abbey of Foigny, and ordered that his confirmation be strengthened with the impression of his royal image: “Ut vero firmior nostra concession habeatur, nostre regie imaginis impressione confirmari precepimus.” This diploma was most probably composed and written in the episcopal chancery of Laon. The written output of the episcopal chancery of Laon receives a detailed analysis in chapter 7 below, at notes 80–89. The episcopal acta of Laon have been edited by Annie Dufour-Malbezin, Actes des évêques de Laon antérieurs à 1151 (Paris, 2001); see for instance charter no. 55, pp. 128–129 (1103), produced by the chancery in the name of the bishop of Laon while Anselm was chancellor: “Ut autem hec constitution firma et illibata in perpetuum permaneat, hoc privilegio, nostra imagine munito . . . firmare precepimus;” “We have ordered that this arrangement be confirmed by this charter affixed with our image.” Brunel, Pontieu, pp. 165, 187–188, 194, 200, 204, 229; see, for instance, charter no. 56, p. 85 (1155): John, count of Ponthieu, and his brother Guy confirm the gifts made to the church of St. John at Amiens by various local lords and begged Thierry, bishop of Amiens, that he deign to attach the image of his seal (“imaginem sui sigilli”) to their charter. Jan Frederik Niermeyer, Mediae Latinitatis Lexicon Minus (Leiden, 1976), p. 510, lists “seal” as a primary meaning of imago in the eleventh and twelfth centuries.

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iconographic viewpoint, seals may be said to display abstracted figures and iconic types. Abstracted figures on seals refer to a conception of the individual as exoteric, someone who must be seen and decoded. As iconic types, seals display a severely limited, barely differentiated repertoire. Seal iconography thus affected the formulation of personal identity in that, through modulated differences of posture, costume, and emblems, it established and published a lexicon of images that classified and limited the contingencies of individual identity. By linking each individual to a formulaic icon, seals tended less to designate singularity than generic conformity to a group; indeed, they functioned as an index of shared membership in specific groups (Fig. 21). Formulaic icons thus suspended individual referentiality, conferring on seals the status of a system. The text of the legend particularized a given seal, giving it the status of instance. Thus seal graphism generated personal identity through a grammar that articulated the organizing principles of society. In this way, personal identity was defined and produced as an instance of social order, and thus produced itself as the verifier of the system it substantiated. The medieval sense of identity was about resemblance: the person as sign signaled that signs of representation were in conformity with social reality. This sense of identity parallels what is conveyed by the seal metaphor: the self as seal impression. The seal was the form, and the resultant personalized individual was a likeness. Seal metaphors and seal graphism were not alone in projecting this concept of identity. The element of likeness was intensified by the technique of sealing, which involves duplication. Every seal impression in wax from a specific matrix was identical. The seal’s competence and significance was, indeed, predicated on replication. Seals, bearing conventional images and acting through replication, did not emphasize distinction so much as likeness. The element of likeness was also heightened through the very modes by which seals presented themselves as representative of their owners: the seal bore and was his owner’s image, his imago. And the seal owner, as the object of representation, himself became an image of sameness, a warranted replica. The identities of the individual and his seal depended on their capacity to resemble a model. In its operating and metaphoric principles, the seal was associated with transcendency (God) and at the same time also partook of the properties of its referent, an individual. The seal—operating through the medium of its progeny (the impressions), through its creative capacity, through its power of becoming (the

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impression), as well as simply of being (the matrix)—was experienced in analogy to the life process.85 On the mechanism of seal operation, the individual could project the autonomy of his conscience (we have seen the importance of intention), his ability to control the idea of his person. Mechanization and personalization are not contradictory. Individuals and seals became reciprocal models. Seals, conforming to and informing the logic of prescholastic semiotics, derived their capacity for signifying from their perceived affinity to, and agency within, human biography. Thus seals were successful as objects denoting both identity and authority. They produced identity as a foundation for documentary authorship, authority, and, ultimately, authentication. The notion of identity as likeness and replicable resemblance, as it came to be conceptualized and realized through seals, was to affect more generally the fabric of social life. With the diffusion of sealed charters in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, human beings bounded by flesh and consciousness were now engaging in strategies of deferred representation so that, where they had previously operated as their own empirical self-representing agents, they now came to coexist with, indeed relate to, a “double,” their representative image (imago). This double, which functioned as if the other (the human absentee) were both present and identical, was an object, the seal; reciprocally, the seal signified the individual, who thus came to be newly mobilized as a locus for imparting permanence and authority to the written word. Such mobilization was therefore achieved by means of representation conceived both as replicate presence and as objectification. These two processes had radical effects on the notion of the individual.86 In the course of embodying the linguistic ego of a charter together with the physical presence of its individual referent, seal and imago veered away from personal expression and toward stylization. Seals empowered not the individual as particular being but the person as category, the person as representative. The graphic logic of seals established a crucial distinction between the individual of flesh and character and the individual as an impersonation of social roles specified by 85

In the felicitous words of Margaret Cool Root in her review of Seals and Sealing in the Ancient Near East, ed. M. Gibson and R.D. Biggs (Malibu, 1977), in the Journal of Near Eastern Studies, 41 (1982), pp. 58–60. 86 See above n. 9 the definition of “individual” used in this chapter and the debate surrounding the “discovery of the individual” in the twelfth century.

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codes. The particular living individual of earlier oral ceremonies came to be increasingly abstracted as an incarnation of a particular social group. Formulas of identity on seals predicate the notion of individual as an instance of social organization. The socialization of signs of recognition prompted a consideration, and an allocation, of emblematic qualities that came to substitute for individual character. Sigillographic representation, constituting its subject by exhibiting qualifications and titles, produced personal legitimacy as a functional effect of the social framework. Through seals, therefore, the power of authorization passed from the individual to the representational framework of titles and qualifications that enabled, permitted, and authorized his or her authority. The emergence of the person as a category repositioned authority itself as an impersonal and atemporal structure capable of generating itself as state, and duties as law. In producing impersonal identity as the foundation for authority and authenticity, seals assume an epiphanic concept of authority that lays claim to function in its own name, that is, in the name of . . . nobody.87 Individual empowerment by means of seals implied that, as a represented subject, the medieval human being was reinvented as an object, becoming a symbolic form wherein the immediate particulars of personal presence were synthesized and vested in tangible objects, seals. To be recognized and to be functional as a person, the individual had to become something else, a sign. Through signs, the individual acquired definition and was constituted as an effective site for the production of symbolic activity. Ultimately, individual identity was subordinated to signs because, in terms of the prescholastic dialectics, which were used to consider the very possibility of a personal identity, signs had greater and more stable powers of representation, their modes of representation involving less portrayal than embodiment. What arose in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, therefore, was less “the individual” than a semiotic system, a practice of sign interpretation that fostered representation of the person as a category. The individual was a representational device, a point of reference. The individual consequently appears to have been a casualty of the eleventh and twelfth centuries, reduced to rule-referential roles, and retreating

87 In the Odyssey (9, 1, verse 366), Ulysses introduced himself to Cyclops in those terms: “C’est personne; c’est mon nom”; quoted, translated, and discussed in Legendre, Le désir politique de Dieu, p. 20.

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behind representation and representational signs whose operational principles lay not in individualization but classification, not in differentiation but replication, not in identification but verification. Seals did not construct social relationships, but they did catalog them as a hierarchical set, serving as a formal system for the indication of social status. The aristocracy, for the period under consideration, came to recognize itself in terms of its sign-objects, and it was in terms of these objects that the morality and the standards of the group— eschatological concerns, warfare, penitential needs, spiritual intentions, accountability, kindred—came to be expressed. Seals, by establishing social and moral roles as intrinsic constituents of each person’s identity, fostered an integration of the medieval ethical order. Sealing practices were developed within the polemical world of prescholastic schools and chanceries, where debates on semiotics were also doctrinal and fueled by an awareness that alternative modes of theological interpretation might well lead to the characterization of opponents as alien, if not heretical. Seen in this light, the objective formulation of identity through signs may be situated within a larger strategy concerned with identifying, controlling, and ultimately destroying otherness. Certainly, the diffusion of sealing and the preoccupation with heresy and doctrinal deviance were contemporaneous.88 May not the formulation of a sign of identity have been stimulated by the struggle for dogmatic authority and by the related need to oppose those perceived as “other” and threatening? Such speculative considerations stimulate interest in 88 In the reforming council held at Reims in 1049, its convener, Pope Leo IX, denounced many heresies and illicit practices, probably targeting Berengar’s followers among others (Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 146–147; Macdonald, Berengar and the Reform of Sacramental Doctrine, pp. 56–57). In Cambrai, the anti-Berengar position of Bishop Gerard (d. 1051) was recorded in the Acta Synodi Atrebatensis (see chapter 5 above, and chapter 7 below at notes 16–17), a much revised and expanded version of his confrontation with a group of dissenters at the synod of Arras in 1025 (Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 120–39). Roscelin had to defend his views on the Trinity at a Council held in Soissons in 1092 (Picavet, Roscelin, pp. 50–52). Abelard’s work was condemned by the Council of Soissons in 1121, the proceedings of which had been instigated by two pupils of Anselm of Laon, Alberic of Reims and Lotulf of Novara, and at the Council of Sens in 1140 (Marenbon, Philosophy of Peter Abelard, pp. 17, 31–32). The violent intellectual climate that pervaded the Gregorian Reform and its aftermath has been recently analyzed by Dominique Iogna-Prat, “La formation d’un paradigme ecclésial de la violence intellectuelle dans l’Occident latin aux XIe et XIIe siècles,” in Le mot qui tue: Histoire des violences intellectuelles de l’Antiquité à nos jours, ed. Patrick Boucheron and Vincent Azoulay (Seyssel, 2009), pp. 322–331. See chapter 8 below for a specific instance of the role seals could play in the denunciation of opposition as individuality.

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the actual role of identity and of its signs in the regimentation of social life, though for the moment we must leave this unresolved. Prescholastic sign theory informed and enabled the representational capacity of seals, so that seals could embody the identity and operate as the imago of their owners through their very modes of signification. These modes included semantic components (text and image), semiotic operations (stereotypy, resemblance, replication, and mechanization), and a metaphorical dimension. Seals were signs that encoded the concept of medieval identity as replicable resemblance. The mode of identification that seals promoted in the eleventh and twelfth centuries favored distinction by category. The greater their ability to classify, the less the seals’ capacity to particularize identity. But of course, in prescholastic culture, true identity, that is, a perfect correspondence between an original and its image, as conceived for the Trinity or the eucharist, could only be a divine attribute.

CHAPTER SEVEN

IMAGES OF IDENTITY AND THE IDENTITY OF IMAGES [The following scene takes place in Sri Lanka (Ceylon).] There is a ceremony to prepare the artificer during the night before he paints. You realize, he is brought in only to paint the eyes on the Buddha image. The eyes must be painted in the morning, at five. The hour the Buddha attained enlightenment. The ceremonies therefore begin the night before, with recitations and decorations in the temples. Without the eyes there is not just blindness, there is nothing. There is no existence. The artificer brings to life sight and truth and presence. Later he will be honored with gifts. Lands or oxen. He enters the temple doors. He is dressed like a prince, with jewellery, a sword at his waist, lace over his head. He moves forward accompanied by a second man, who carries brushes, black paint and a metal mirror. He climbs a ladder in front of the statue. The man with him climbs too. This has taken place for centuries, you realize, there are records of this since the ninth century. The painter dips a brush into the paint and turns his back to the statue, so it looks as if he is about to be enfolded in the great arms. The paint is wet on the brush. The other man, facing him, holds up the mirror, and the artificer puts the brush over his shoulder and paints in the eyes without looking directly at the face. He uses just the reflection to guide him—so only the mirror receives the direct image of the glance being created. No human eye can meet the Buddha’s during the process of creation . . . . He never looks at the eyes directly. He can only see the gaze in the mirror. Michael Ondaatje, Anil’s Ghost

Images and the Senses: From Gregory the Great to Guillaume Durand In 600, Gregory the Great (d. 604) wrote to the iconoclastic bishop of Marseille, Serenus, that images (picturae) in churches allow those who do not know letters (litteras) to learn something of sacred history (historia) by seeing (visione) and reading (lectione) on the walls what they are unable to grasp in written texts. In his letter, Gregory gave much evidence of his belief in the supremacy of the written word over the painted image. He repeatedly cast the non-literate as ignorant simpletons (ignorantes, idiotae) and virtual pagans (gentes). Though recognizing the image to be functionally analogous to script when the capacity for reading Scripture was wanting, he nevertheless denied

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concrete images any of the sacrality that imbued the Bible. He held that the contemplation of religious images might lead to the adoration of God, but that the power to do so was not inherent in the image itself. For Gregory, the effect of an image was limited by what corporeal vision could offer, a mere sensual grasp of material forms. It was the historia painted upon religious images, it was the vision of sacred history (visio historiae, visio rei gestae) which engaged spiritual seeing and feelings (ardor compunctionis), and led to proper adoration, that of the Triune God.1 When early eight-century Byzantine iconoclasm radicalized the ongoing debates surrounding the place of icons in Christian worship, the council of II Nicaea, in 787, proceeded to justify the cultic use of images. A Latin mistranslation from the Greek counciliar acta led Frankish scholars to believe that the Byzantines had condoned the adoration of images. On the basis of this misunderstanding, the Franks found themselves in a tricky situation. Following the tradition laid down by Gregory the Great, they had to accept images, even while

1

“. . . Et quidem quia eas [imagines] adorari vetuisses, omnino laudavimus; fregisse vero reprehendimus . . . Aliud est enim picturam adorare, aliud per picturae historiam quid sit adorandum addiscere. Nam quod legentibus scripture, hoc idiotis praestat pictura cernentibus, quia in ipsa etiam ignorantes vident qui sequi debeant, in ipsa legunt qui litteras nesciunt. Unde et praecipue gentibus pro lectione pictura est . . . Ac deinde subjungendum quia picturas imaginum, quae ad aedificationem imperiti populi fuerant factae, ut nescientes litteras, ipsam historiam intendentes, quid actum sit discerent, quia transisse in adorationem videras, idcirco commotus es, ut eas imagines frangi praeciperes. Atque eis dicendum: si ad hanc instructionem ad quam imagines antiquitus factae sunt habere vultis in ecclesia, eas modis omnibus et fieri et haberi. Atque indica quod non tibi ipsa visio historiae, quae pictura teste pendebatur, displicuerit, sed illa adoratio quae picturis fuerat incompetenter exhibita . . .”, Epistolae Gregorii Magni, X.13, Ad Serenum Massiliensem Episcopum, PL LXXVII, col. 1128B–C, 1129A–B; X. 10, S. Gregorius Magnus Registrum Epistularum, ed. Dag Norberg, (Tumhout, 1982; Corpus christianorum series Latina 140–140A), 140A, pp. 874–875; Jean-Claude Schmitt, “Ecriture et image: les avatars médiévaux du modèle grégorien,” in Théories et pratiques de l’écriture au Moyen Age (Nanterre, 1987), pp. 119–154 at pp. 122–124; J.-Cl. Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” in Nicée II, 787–1987 Douze siècles d’images religieuses, ed. François Boespflug and Nicolas Lossky (Paris, 1987), pp. 271–301, reprinted in his Le corps de l’image: Essais sur la culture visuelle au Moyen Age (Paris, 2002), pp. 63–95; Herbert L. Kessler, “Real Absence: Early Medieval Art and the Metamorphosis of Vision,” in Morfologie sociali e culturali in Europa fra tarda antichitá e alto medieovo, Settimana di studio del Centro italiano di studi sull’alto medioevo xlv (Spoleto, 1998), pp. 1157–1211, reprinted in Spiritual Seeing: Picturing God’s Invisibility in Medieval Art (Philadelphia, 2000), pp. 105–148 at p. 120–121; Celia M. Chazelle, “Pictures, Books and the Illiterates: Pope Gregory I’s Letter to Serenus of Marseille,” Word and Image 6 (1990), pp. 138–153.

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rebuking what they considered to be Byzantine iconolatry.2 This, they did by denying material images any spiritual significance, and by emphasizing that whatever knowledge images might impart was independent of their matter and the form of their production. Consequently, only the mental vision of things having neither images nor likeness, such as love, might lead to an understanding of what was being seen. Material and bodily images of physical things, on the other hand, which varied with the carnal vision of beholders, could convey no true knowledge of what was being seen.3

2 On the reception and deliberations of these theories in Carolingian Europe, in the Opus Caroli regis (formerly titled Libri Carolini ), at the Frankfurt synod of 794, in the Paris synod of 824, and in the Libellus, see Ann Freeman, “Theodulf of Orléans and the Libri Carolini,” Speculum 32 (1957), pp. 663–705; Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II,” pp. 274–277; Stephen Gero, “The Libri Carolini and the Image Controversy,” Greek Orthodox Theological Review 18 (1973), pp. 7–34; A. Freeman, “Carolingian Orthodoxy and the Fate of the Libri Carolini,” Viator 16 (1985), pp. 65–108; Hans Belting, Likeness and Presence: A History of the Image before the Era of Art (Chicago, 1994), pp. 297–298; Thomas F.X. Noble, “Tradition and Learning in Search of Ideology,” in “The Gentle Voices of Teachers”: Aspects of Learning in the Carolingian Age, ed. Richard Sullivan (Columbus, 1995), pp. 227–260; Opus Caroli regis adversus synodum (Libri Carolini), ed. A. Freeman et al. (Hannover 1998); Th. Noble, “From the Libri Carolini to the Opus Caroli Regis,” Journal of Medieval Latin 9 (1999), pp. 131–147; C. Chazelle, The Crucified God in the Carolingian Era (Cambridge, 2001), pp. 120–124; Kristina Mitalaïté, Philosophie et théologie de l’image dans les ‘Libri Carolini’ (Paris, 2007; Collection des études augustiennes: Moyen Age et Temps Modernes 43). On the instructions of Louis the Pious, Jonas of Orléans completed, in 840, the De Cultu Imaginum (PL CVI, cols. 305B–388A). 3 Eighth-century western justification of images, held in response to and contemporary with eastern Iconoclasm and with the more moderate anti-image texts of the Opus Caroli regis (Libri Carolini), was developed within the framework of Pope Gregory the Great’s writings on the pedagogical utility, and commemorative and spiritual function of images. Yet, whereas Gregory had assigned to Christ’s incarnation, and not to image, the capacity to lead from visible to invisible things, an eighth-century interpolation to Gregory’s Letter to Secundinus applied this capacity to the picture of Christ itself. Widely quoted thereafter by western supporters of images, the interpolated passage asserted that the image of Christ elicited feelings of love, which carried the mind toward a contemplation of God in the spirit. According to this theory feelings, not images, lead the mind to contemplation of the invisible God; the role of images, thus, was purely affective, Kessler, “Real Absence, pp. 1157–1211, reprinted in Spiritual Seeing, pp. 105–148, with further bibliography. This theory is pure Augustine, as excerpted from his De genesi ad litteram, De Trinitate, De magistro, De fide rerum invisibilium, De consensu evangelistarum, and De doctrina Christiana: Whether conventional or figurative, linguistic or material, Augustinian signs and images were radically distinguished from their things, the eternal realities to which they pointed. Signification was thus removed from its sensory and physical basis, and physical objects disappeared behind those transcendental truths they were assumed to symbolize: Noble shows admirably the extent to which Carolingian scholars were dependent upon Augustine’s dualism: “The Vocabulary of Vision and Worship,” pp. 213–237.

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Centuries later, Guillaume Durand, bishop of Mende, wrote in the Rationale divinorum officiorum (1285–1292) that ‘images seem better to be able to move the spirit than scripture, which is why, in the Church, we show more reverence to images than to books.’ Bishop Guillaume faulted books for being like hearing (auditum), a sense which he declared did not much move the soul in bringing sacred history back to memory, in contrast to images which affect the soul by placing sacred history right before the eyes.4 Yet, even as he inverted Gregory’s judgment in comparing the written word and the image, Guillaume prefaced his chapter on Images, where this statement is situated, with a quotation from the primary auctoritas on the subject, the very letter of Gregory to Bishop Serenus just cited.

Numerous studies have analyzed the status of images and artefacts in the early Middle Ages, of which the following are but a representative sample: C. Chazelle, “Matter, Spirit, and Image in the Libri Carolini,” Recherches augustiniennes 21 (1986), pp. 163–184; C. Chazelle, “ ‘Not in Painting But in Writing’: Augustine and the Supremacy of the Word in the Libri Carolini,” in Reading and Wisdom: The De doctrina Christiana of Augustine in the Middle Ages, ed. Edward D. English (Notre Dame, 1995), pp. 1–22; C. Chazelle, “Images, Scripture, the Church, and the Libri Carolini,” Proceedings of the Patristic, Medieval, and Renaissance Studies Conference 16/17 (1993), pp. 53–76; Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” pp. 63–95; J.-Cl. Schmitt, “Liberté et norme des images occidentales,” in Le corps de l’image, pp. 135–164, especially at pp. 140–44; Kessler, “Real Absence,” (where the author traces the disintegration, around the middle of the twelfth century, between physical and spiritual images), and H. Kessler, “ ‘Facies Bibliothecae Revelata.’ Carolingian Art as Spiritual Seeing,” in Spiritual Seeing, pp. 104–148, 149–189; Mary Carruthers, The Craft of Thought: Meditation, Rhetoric, and the Making of Images, 400–1200 (Cambridge, 1998); Approaches to Early Medieval Art, ed. Lawrence Nees, Speculum 72/4 (1997; reprinted (Cambridge, 1998). 4 ‘Pictura namque plus videtur movere animum quam scripture. Per picturam quidem res gesta ante oculos ponitur; sed per scripturam res gesta quasi per auditum, qui minus movet animam, ad memoriam revocatur. Hinc etiam est, quod, in ecclesia non tantam reverentiam exhibemus libris, quantum imaginibus et picturis’, quoted in Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II, et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” p. 298. In his commentaries on Peter Lombard’s Sententiae, Thomas Aquinas (d. 1274) wrote: ‘Fuit autem triplex ratio institutionis imaginem in Ecclesia . . . Secundo ut incarnationis mysterium et sanctorum exempla magis in memoria nostra essent, dum quotidie oculis repraesentantur. Tercio ad excitandum devotionis affectum qui ex visis efficacius incitantur quam ex auditis,’ Sententiae, III, IX, 1,2,7, quoted in Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II, et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” p. 296, and in Jean Wirth, “Structure et fonctions de l’image chez saint Thomas d’Aquin,” in L’image: Fonctions et usages des images dans l’Occident médiéval, ed. Jerôme Baschet and J-Cl. Schmitt (Paris, 1996), pp. 39–57 at p. 51; see also Ruedi Imbach and Francois-Xavier Putallaz, “Notes sur l’usage du terme imago chez Thomas D’Aquin,” in La visione e lo sguardo nel medio evo. View and Vision in the Middle Ages. I, Micrologus 5 (1997), pp. 69–88.

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By the thirteenth century, however, the agency of images had clearly left the sphere of illiteracy for a more general instrumentality affecting the human mind.5 The theory of images had evolved well beyond, indeed often opposed, Gregory’s postulate, which nevertheless continued respectfully to be quoted. Bishop Guillaume is in fact representative of generations of medieval commentators, and even of modern medievalists, who have interpreted Gregory as contrasting image to writing, and for whom the Gregorian polarity of images and letters, the sensual and the rational, has had an enduring interpretive power. Both medieval and modern historiography may have reconfigured or even challenged the specifics of the relationship between script and image but omitting, for instance, consideration of the role of hearing in this relationship, has largely persisted in regarding these two media, script and image, as dialectic elements of an inevitably binary system. Polarization, however, need not have been the principal, still less the only, meaning of what Gregory wrote. While he argued for the superiority of writing as a communicative system and distinguished between educated and ignorant audiences, he also implied a certain degree of analogy between written text and image with respect to function (didactic), as well as to cognitive (reading) and signifying (linguistic) modes. Furthermore, a theory of polarization cannot easily accommodate a situation wherein literacy developed in parallel to a simultaneous expansion of images, the situation which obtained in Western Europe from the eleventh century to the Reformation. Nor did the extension of literate practices result in an invariable belief that writing was a superior system of communication. In Eadmer’s account of the controversy between Henry I, king of England, and Anselm, archbishop of Canterbury, about the royal investiture of churches, both parties sought support from the Pope. Henry sent three bishops and Anselm two monks. A formal reply came in 1101, by way of papal letters which, sealed with leaden bullae and bearing monograms and the marks of curial officials, were perhaps the most impressive documents 5 Michael Camille, ‘The Gregorian Definition Revisited: Writing and the Medieval Image,’ in L’image: Fonctions et usages, ed. Baschet and Schmitt, pp. 89–107; Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle;” Schmitt, “Ecriture et image;” Lawrence Duggan, “Was Art Really the ‘Book of the Illiterate’?” Word and Image 5 (1989), pp. 227–251; Kessler, “Real Absence;” H.L. Kessler, “The Function of Vitrum Vestitum and the use of Materia Saphirorum in Suger’s St.-Denis,” in L’image: Fonctions et usages, ed. Baschet and Schmitt, pp. 179–203, reprinted in Kessler, Spiritual Seeing, pp. 190–205.

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produced in medieval Europe up to that time. King Henry’s episcopal envoys nevertheless insisted that they had also received an oral message from the Pope. This led to a debate about whether to rely on ‘the uncertainty of mere words,’ or upon ‘the deadness of sheepskin blackened with ink and weighted with a little lump of lead.’ The partisans of the written word, Anselm’s monks, buttressed their argument with this indignant question: ‘Are not the Gospels written down on sheepskins?’6 In the mid-twelfth century, canon-law scholars came to focus their attention upon the nature of proof, early manifesting a tendency to favor oral testimony over the written instrument in their assertion that: ‘dignior est vox viva testium quam vox mortua instrumentorum.’7 The primacy of oral testimony, however, remained controversial and did not achieve canonical status until Innocent III’s decretal ‘Cum Joannes Eremita’ (1206–1209) endorsed it.8 Pope Innocent IV (d. 1254) went so far as to denounce the notarial office on the older grounds that it gave credence to the skin of a dead animal: ‘certum est quod contra jus est officium tabellionis, quia chartae animalis mortui creditur sine adminiculo . . . Sunt [chartae] nam hujusmodi quasi contra naturam et miraculosa[e] . . ., contra leges publicas et contra jus naturale.’9 Even two centuries later, Niccolo dei Tedeschi, known as Panormitanus (d. 1453), voiced a continuing distrust for written proofs: ‘quod probatio per instrumentum est supernaturalis, et contra ius, ut credatur pelli animalis mortui. Sed probatio quae fit per duos testes est naturalis secundum ius divinum et humanum: ergo haec est praeferenda.’10 The position adopted by Innocent III favoring oral testimony did not remain confined to the domain of canon law but entered both Roman (civil) law and the French droit coutumier where it remained until

6

Eadmeri Historia Novorum in Anglia, ed. Martin Rule, RS 81 (London, 1884), pp. 132–140; Michael T. Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record: England 1055–1307, 2nd edn. (Oxford and Cambridge, 1993), pp. 260–262. 7 Jean-Philippe Lévy, La hiérarchie des preuves dans le droit savant du Moyen-Age depuis la Renaissance du Droit Romain jusqu’ à la fin du XIVe siècle (Paris, 1939), p. 88. 8 Lévy, La hiérarchie des preuves, pp. 90–91. 9 Innocent IV on X.2.22.14, no. 1; quoted in J.-Ph. Levy, “Coup d’œil d’ensemble sur la preuve littérale,” Hommages à Gérard Boulve. Index, Quaderni camerti di studi romanistici/Internalional Survey of Roman Law 15 (1987), pp. 473–502, at p. 24. 10 Panormitanus on X.2.22.10 (Innocent III’s decretal ‘Cum Joannes Eremita’), no. 13; quoted in Lévy, La hiérarchie des preuves, p. 102.

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its demise in 1566 when the royal ordinance of Moulins decisively affirmed the overruling domination of the written proof.11 The rational offered by canon law from the early thirteenth century onward in support of the oral testimony of witnesses hinged upon their ability, as living creatures, to stand in person before the judge and to speak (vox viva), revealing feelings and convictions through their hesitations, and their flushed or blanching faces.12 In the late fourteenth century, Baldus (1327–1400), an academic jurist equally well versed in civilian and canon law, summed up this tradition in terms that emphasized the impact of the voice on the hearer’s mind: ‘acuitas vivae vocis fortius et efficacius movet animum auditoris . . . Habet enim, in se ipsum, removentem intellectum ex veritate ei data a nature.’13 This connection, between speech, hearing, and feelings, is precisely what Guillaume Durand, though himself an excellent canonist and liturgist, had explicitly denied when he granted to the visual sense and to images the power to move the mind.14 True, he was then concerned with theology rather than with law, but his justification of images, and his concomitant denigration of books as associated with speech and hearing, were based upon a psychological argument, as indeed was the canonistic support of speech. Thus, in the opinions of both lawyers and theologians, the voice and matter of the written word were considered to be dead entities; only speech or image might move the soul. The earliest dissidents to be burned at the stake for heresy (Orleans, 1022) used the same argument later to be invoked by the doctrinally orthodox monks of Bishop Anselm and in canon law. These dissidents had belittled their clerical examiners by denigrating the Church’s book-learning ‘as human fabrications written on the skins of animals.’ To this dead body of carnal fiction, which they deemed a superfluous

11

Lévy, “Coup d’œil,” pp. 481–4833. Ps.-Irnerius (d. c. 1130): ‘[testes] quorum auctoritas maxima habetur propter presentiam . . .,’ Summa Codicis [Trecensis; in this edition falsely attributed to Irnerius, fl. 1110], ed. Hermann Fitting (Berlin, 1894), C.4.20, no. 1; John of Salisbury (d. 1180): ‘Testes testimoniis praeferantur. Nam cum testes examinari possint, testimonia semper et apud omnes eadem sunt,” Policraticus V. 14, ed. Clement C.I. Webb (Oxford, 1909). Accursius (d. 1263): ‘ut [testes] possint terrore iudicis imminente interrogari,’ Glossa Ordinaria, D.22.5.3.2 (the first critical edition of the Accursian gloss is being published in Italy). 13 Quoted in Lévy, La hiérarchie des preuves, p. 104. 14 See above, at note 4. 12

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detour away from God, they opposed a knowledge received directly from God and written in the inner self by the Holy Spirit.15 Images too, however, were decried, by yet other heretics. Their iconoclastic position is recorded in the mid-eleventh-century Acta Synodi Atrebatensis, a much-revised and expanded version of Bishop Gerard of Cambrai’s (d. 1051) confrontation with a group of dissenters at the synod of Arras in 1025.16 In chapters XIII and XIV of the Acta, De veneratione Dominicae crucis and De imagine Salvatoris in cruce, Gerard argued against their opposition to the veneration of sacred images. He insisted that the bodily image of Christ or of the saints informed the illiterate, aroused the inner man, and engaged his spiritual imagination, a position in direct continuity with the Gregorian notion that images could conduct the viewer beyond the sensible and toward the Holy.17 Gerard’s argument went further, however, innovating in two directions. First, he considered both the cross (crucis vexillum, crux, vivificum lignum), that is, the simple linear sign, and the crucifix, that is, a cross bearing the anthropomorphic image of the crucified son of man, giving each a distinct treatment in separate chapters. He buttressed the veneration of the cross by emphasizing its 15 This account is from Paul, of the abbey of St. Pere de Chartres: ‘Ista illis narrare potes, qui terrena sapiunt atque credunt ficta carnalium hominum, scripta in membranulis animalium; nobis autem qui legem scriptam habemus in interiori homine a Spiritu Sancto, et nichil aliud sapimus, nisi quod a Deo, omnium conditore, didicimus, incassum superflua et a Divinitate devia profers’, Cartulaire de l’abbaye de St.-Père de Chartres, ed. Benjamin Guérard, 2 vols. (Paris, 1840), i, 114, quoted in Brian Stock, The Implications of Literacy: Written Language and Models of Interpretation in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries (Princeton, 1983), p. 115; Clanchy, From Memory to Written Record, p. 262. For a critical review of the texts recording the Orléans episode, see Robert-Henri Bautier, “L’hérésie d’Orléans et le mouvement intellectuel au début du XIe siècle. Documents et hypothèses,” in Enseignement et vie intellectuelle (IXe–XVIe siècle). Actes du 95e Congrès national des sociétés savantes, Reims, 1970 (Paris, 1975), pp. 63–88; Michael Frassetto, “The Heresy at Orlérans in 1022 in the Writings of Contemporary Churchmen,” Nottingham Medieval Studies 49(2005), pp. 1–17; Robert I. Moore, The Birth of Popular Heresy (Toronto, 1995), pp. 10–15. 16 Stock, Implications of Literacy, pp. 120–39; M. Frassetto, “Reaction and Reform: Reception of Heresy in Arras and Aquitaine in the Early Eleventh Century,” The Catholic Historical Review 83(1997), pp. 385–400. 17 Acta Synodi Atrebatensis in Manichaeos, PL CXLII, col. 1306B–D: ‘Est vero alia hujus ratio: simpliciores quippe in ecclesia et illiterati, quod per Scripturas non possunt intueri, hoc per quaedam picturae liniamenta contemplatur, id est, Christum in ea humilitate, qua pro nobis pati et mori voluit. Dum hanc speciem venerantur, . . . Christum solum, non opus manuum hominum adorant . . . Similiter de imaginibus sanctorum ratiocinari licet, quae ideo in sancta ecclesia fiunt, non ut ab hominibus adorari debeant, sed ut per eas interius excitemur ad contemplationem gratiae divinae operationem . . .’

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continuing significance in human destiny, from the Fall (lignum scientiae boni et mali) to redemption (lignum vitae).18 In treating worship and adoration, however, Gerard discursively transformed the cross into a crucifix: ‘glorificantes igitur crucem Dominicam, Christum, quasi pendentem in ea, mente invocamus.’19 Gerard’s approach testifies to the growing presence of the imago crucis in cultic sensibilities and in liturgical practices, a role that prior to the eleventh century had been primarily if not exclusively filled by the signum crucis. This anthropomorphic turn was not specific to the cross. It also affected the form of reliquaries, no longer simply caskets, however decorated, but now typically three-dimensional, assuming the human shape of the saint or of his or her preserved relic.20 In both instances, the formula changed from the abstract to the figurative, from the allegorical to the mimetic, from the symbolic to the incarnational. Second, although Gerard somewhat conflated signum and imago crucis, and although he ranked the imago crucis with the imagines sanctorum, he nevertheless managed to assign to ‘the visible image of Jesus crucified’ a unique power, that of ‘engraving itself on the human heart so that everybody may recognize their debts toward the Redeemer.’21 In the Gregorian 18 ‘Primus namque Adam inobedientiae mucrone interfectus est a ligno scientiae boni et mali, et nos secum traxit in mortem; secundus Adam per palmam obedientiae a cruce transitivit in vitam aeternam, et nos secum duxit,’ PL CXLII, col. 1305A–B. 19 PL CXLII, col. 1306A. 20 In Carolingian times, reservations about images abated when it came to relics. Sculptures of the ninth century which housed the remnants of saints were figural, assimilating statue and reliquary: Jean Hubert and Marie-Clotilde Hubert, “Piété chrétienne ou paganisme? Les statues-reliquaires de l’Europe carolingienne,” Christianizzazione ed organizazione ecclesiastica delle campagne nell’alto medioevo: espansione e resistenze. Settimana di studio del Centro italiano di studi sull’alto medioevo xviii (Spoleto, 1982), pp. 235–275. Ultimately, statues of saints came to be empty of relics and venerated in and for themselves, Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” 282–6; Schmitt, “La culture de l’imago,” Annales, Histoire, Sciences sociales 51/1 (1996), pp. 3–36 at pp. 14–18; Hans Belting, Likeness and Presence: A History of the Image before the Era of Art, trans. E. Jephcott (Chicago and London, 1994), pp. 299–303; Cynthia Hahn, “Seeing and Believing: the Construction of Sanctity in Early Medieval Saints’ Shrines,” in Approaches to Early Medieval Art, ed. Laurence Nees, Speculum 72 (1997), pp. 1079–1106, and Hahn, ‘The Voices of the Saints: Speaking Reliquaries,’ Gesta 36 (1997), pp. 20–31. 21 “Non enim truncus ligneus adoratur, sed per illam visibilem imaginem mens interior hominis excitatur, in qua Christi passio et mors pro nobis suscepta tanquam in membrana cordis inscribitur, ut in se unusquisque recognascat quanta suo Redemptori debeat; dum videlicet juxta Salvatoris sententiam, quae postulat imago Caesaris, reddantur Caesari, et quae Dei, Deo,” PL CXLII, col. 1306C; Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” pp. 287–8.

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scheme and its early medieval aftermath, images were held to be radically distinct from the truth, from the absent figures they portrayed; sensual reactions aroused by images in men had to be transcended in order to reach proper adoration of the Holy. In Gerard’s words, however, the bodily image of Christ could mediate a presence of Christ in man, was itself constitutive of the faithful’s reckoning with Christ’s passion. Here the evolution was from an image that was seen, overtaken, and discarded, to one that was imprinted, remained present, and was capable of actualizing the presence of the figure represented. At stake in these arguments concerning images, letters, physical symbols, and sacraments, was the power of mediation, a power whose nature was increasingly theorized, perhaps even experienced, as capable of effecting visibility and presence with respect to things invisible or absent. A perceptible tension now developed at the level of experienced reality, between the current practice of iconic signs and the traditional template still being invoked to stipulate the systematic linkage of form and meaning. The confusion that had arisen concerning the status of tangible signs in the eleventh century is palpable in Bishop Gerard’s muddled account of his encounters with the aforementioned heretics. Each party accused the other of physicality. The heretics blamed the institutional church for making spirituality contingent upon physical manifestations. Gerard blamed the heretics for misunderstanding the place of tangible objects and rituals in religious life and for rejecting their mediation. For eleventh- and twelfth-century theorists, the traditional semiotics inherent in early medieval thought including that of Gregory the Great seemed inadequate to rebut attack against physicalism and to theorize its proper place in Christian culture. Prescholastic thinkers needed to develop both a theory to support a representational system in which material entities were central to signification, and the system itself. Prescholastics re-conceived signifying modes that would enable signs to be experienced as if the referent, the other, the absent one, were present and, if not identical at least identifiable through resemblance. In prescholastic sign theory, signs signified through their capacity to embody their referents’ characteristics. Of this signifying process, eucharistic transubstantiation was the ultimate if singular model.22 Medieval semiotics thereby shifted

22 See chapters 5 and 6 above, for the full argument concerning the relationship between eleventh- and twelfth-century eucharistic debates and semiotic turn. BedosRezak, “Une image ontologique: sceau et ressemblance en France préscolastique

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emphasis from transcendence to immanence, from deferral to reference, from representation to actualization. I propose in this chapter to analyze the formulation of an immanent theory of signs by focusing upon one specific aspect of prescholastics’ engagement with semiotics, their discourse about and their manipulation of images. I will contend that prescholastic theories of image, in shunning the concept of image as mirror in favor of a consideration of image as imprint, articulated an awareness of the relationship between modes of iconic representation, the constitution of the subject, ego, and the construction of subjectivity. I will also argue that the prescholastic re-interpretation of image as imprint marks a critical moment in the medieval history of representation since it was as an imprint, the seal, that the image first emerged within the field of social praxis. Once there, the imprinted imago evolved further, into a replica (c. 1180–1250). Each of these formulas, mirror, imprint, replica, intersected and interacted with definitions of the person, and of identity, ultimately producing a practice of representation which, in turn, reciprocally affected the body social and the world of images. As the changed semiotics of prescholastic images appears to have been concomitant with new representational practices, the very performance of these images in society seems to have brought about working definitions which came to subvert the rules constructed at the theoretical level. Ultimately, images could and did assert control over their own definition. The Currency of Imago: Augustine, Byzantine Anti-Iconoclasm, and Twelfth-Century Scholarship The prescholastic term imago had currency in several fields. In anthropological theology, imago articulated the essential relationship of man to his maker, God. In incarnational theology, imago was the image of God who took human form in the person of his son, and who was on earth “the image of the father.” In linguistics, the concept of imago extended to textual metaphors. In what we would call psychology,

(1000–1200),” in Etudes d’histoire de l’art offertes à Jacques Thirion: Des premiers temps Chrétiens au XXe Siècle, ed. Alain Erlande-Brandenburg and Jean-Michel Leniaud (Paris, 2001), pp. 39–50.

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imago referred to mental images produced by dreams, to the memory, to the imagination. In prescholastic theories of cognition, imago underlay perceptions of the mind; it was a sign that enabled the contemplation of things. In the world of material symbols, imago designated the representation of forms and thus, in the diplomatic discourse of charters, imago meant seal.23 The primary sense of imago was mimesis, which afforded a conceptual tool allowing comparison and appraisal in two fundamental circumstances: that of humanity created in the image of God, and that of things experienced in multiple forms (actual, linguistic, iconic etc.). Thus, the prescholastic imago was first and foremost an agent for the conceptualization of referentiality, bringing images within the hermeneutical sphere of semiotics. The centrality of imago in the eleventh- and twelfth-century theological discourse of northern European schoolmen was fostered by their interest in creation, the creation of man in the image of God, the generation of Christ as the image of God. Just as imago was used to explain relationships of man and Christ to the Godhead, incarnation and human creation were used to explain the relationship between images and their referents. Twelfth-century theology and anthropology both thus came to be articulated through, and dependent upon, a fully elaborated theory of imagery. For that very reason, the economy of representation through images became inseparable from its anchor in personality, whether human or divine. Byzantine theologians had already probed the nature of the relationship between images and physical persons. From the eight-century onward, anti-iconoclasts insisted that images could represent human beings such as Jesus, because images always represent persons who exist within a human body. Thus, Christ-the-man was visible in his image; but how could the invisible God be said to have been rendered visible in Christ as in an image? Attempts to answer this question led to the notion that the Christ-image contained its own archetype: God, the archetype, was materialized in the son of Man as in an image, a formula that owed much to familiarity with Platonic thought.24 This 23 Schmitt, “La culture de l’imago,” p. 4; Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique,” pp. 39–50, at pp. 42–44; Robert Javelet, Image et ressemblance au 12e siècle, de saint Anselme à Alain de Lille, 2 vols (Paris, 1967), vol. 1, xix–xxiii. 24 Beltig, Likeness and Presence, p. 152. Belting carefully demonstrates how the theory of images produced to oppose the iconoclasts was revolutionary in that it considered the image and the word of God to be equal media of revelation; in earlier theories revelation had rested solely on God’s written word. Nevertheless, the anti-

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image (Christ), however, was engendered, and iconoclasts insisted that it should thus be distinguished from images created by imitation. The iconophile, Theodore of Studios (759–826), drawing further upon Neo-Platonism, rehabilitated the created, artificial, image by stating that all types of image originate in a prototype: “As a seal belonged to an impression, so a likeness belonged to a model.”25 Here, the seal metaphor articulates a central aim of Byzantine theology, which was to trace the image back to the truth of its archetype.26 Of interest here is the notion that the truth of images rests upon a mechanical imitation of the model’s forms and specific features, that an image actually depicts the person who was the model. Since an image’s truth derived from its figural identity with its archetype, and since everything was created from an archetype, nothing could claim to be real that did not lend itself to being represented by an image. However, though sharing an identity of forms, archetype and image differ in substance. Theodore of Studios, who had used the seal metaphor to establish formal identity, resorted once again to this metaphor to illustrate differences in substance: “take the example of a signet-ring engraved with the imperial image, and let it be impressed upon wax, pitch, and clay. The impression is one and the same in the several materials which, however, are different with respect to each other; the impression remained identical [precisely] because it was entirely unconnected with the material . . . The same applies to the likeness of Christ irrespective of the material upon which it is represented.”27 In this metaphor, the

iconoclastic theologians also sought to justify their doctrine of images by drawing upon the patristic tradition. Church Fathers (Basil the Great, ca. 330–79, in particular) were not concerned about images per se but had invoked them as an explanatory device to elucidate the two natures of Christ. Resorting to the platonic concept of archetype (God) and image (Christ, bearer of its archetype), they in effect provided later theologians with a justification to venerate images in the name of the person they represented, in the same way that the Father, contained in the Son as in an image, could be honored in Christ (pp. 149–155). 25 Patrologiae cursus completus, series graeca, ed. Jacques Paul Migne, 221 vols (Paris, 1841–1864), vol. XCV, col. 163, vol. XCIX, cols. 432–33; quoted in Belting, Likeness and Presence, p. 153. On Theodore’s argument that the icon affirms and proves the truth of Christ’s incarnation, see Constantin Scouteris, ‘La personne du verbe incarné et l’icône. L’argumentation iconoclaste et la réponse de saint Théodore Studite,’ in Nicée II, pp. 121–133. 26 Belting, Likeness and Presence, p. 150. 27 Quoted in Gary Vikan, “Ruminations on Edible Icons: Originals and Copies in the Art of Byzantium,” in Retaining the Original: Multiple Originals, Copies, and Reproductions, ed. ed. Kathleen Preciado (Washington, D.C., 1989), pp. 47–59, at p. 51.

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materiality of the imprinted or representing object itself is ignored; the substance of the image has no significance. The eleventh-century theologian Michael Psellus further elaborated this position in his treatise on Genesis 1:26–27 (where God said: Let us make man in our image, after our likeness . . . . and God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him), arguing that there was no intermediate image between God the invisible, and man who was made in God’s image; there was no Christ serving as a visible model which could be distinguished from the invisible model of God himself. This undermined the possibility of an actual resemblance between man and God, and indeed Psellus interpreted the nature of image in Genesis 1:26–27 philosophically, as the capacity of imperfect human beings to progress toward God and to perfect themselves.28 Psellus, who explicitly rejected Plato’s comparison of images with shadows, who insisted that an icon’s true prototype was the “real being” of which the icon was a living representation, could not fit human anthropology into such a theory of image.29 My reason for offering an overview of the Byzantine theology of images is that, from the ninth century onward, this theology had provided a theory about the relation between image and person, manipulating metaphors (such as the seal) and a vocabulary of imprinting, both of which came to characterize the western prescholastic dis-

See a translation of Theodore’s text in Cyril Mango, The Art of the Byzantine Empire, 312–1453: Sources and Documents (Englewood Cliffs, 1972), p. 174. For additional texts by Theodore of Stoudios employing the seal metaphor to legitimate a theory of images, indeed attaching image-making to the incarnation itself, see H.L. Kessler, “Configuring the Invisible by Copying the Holy Face,” The Holy Face and the Paradox of Representation ed. H.L. Kessler and G. Wolf (Bologna, 1998), pp. 129–151, at pp. 133–34, 150, reprinted in Kessler, Spiritual Seeing, pp. 64–103. 28 Belting, Likeness and Presence, p. 263; a résumé of Psellus’ commentary on Genesis 1:26 is given at 529–530 while the full text of the commentary is available in Michael Psellus, Scripta minora, ed. E. Kurtz and F. Drexl, 2 vols. (Milan, 1936–1941), vol. 1, pp. 411–414. 29 Belting, Likeness and Presence, pp. 261–264, and pp. 528–529 where Belting provides a translation of Psellus’ literary description of an icon of the Crucifixion; see above at note 28 for Psellus’ commentary on Genesis 1:26. Psellus, in rejecting the Platonic argument which linked image to prototype in a static relationship, freed icons to act as their own models and to assign lifelike expressions to the person represented. As figures in icons could be seen as models of spiritual perfection, the image itself acquired a programmatic dimension. Psellus’ focus on the ethical meaning of images, together with his insistence that expressive icons resembled more exactly what they represented, led him to conclude that likeness between man and God was not a matter of resemblance but the capacity for human being to perfect themselves.

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course on images.30 However, I do not wish to give the impression that Byzantine theology directly influenced European schoolmen. Both parties, to be sure, were drawing upon a common neo-platonic heritage which, in the case of the West, was mediated mostly through Augustine.31 Yet, both sides transformed the conceptual tools of Platonism, interpreting them differently and mobilizing them for different purposes. Whereas the Byzantines were considering actual images, their power, and the legitimacy of their veneration, western prescholastics did not theorize primarily about material images per se.32 The property of image

30 See above, at notes 1–3, for an account of western justification of images in the early Middle Ages. 31 The sixth-century neo-platonic writings of Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite scarcely affected western thought until the twelfth century, and their impact thereafter is very much debated. On the influence these writings had on Suger (d. 1151), see for instance Grover Zinn, Jr., “Suger, Theology, and the Pseudo-Dionysian Tradition,” Abbot Suger and Saint-Denis, ed. P. Gerson (New York, 1986), pp. 33–40; Kessler, “The Function of Vitrum Vestitum,” pp. 193–194, with relevant bibliography. The influence of the Pseudo-Dionysius is also found in the theology of Hugh of St.-Victor’s (d. 1141), see Schmitt, “L’Occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” p. 292. Conrad Rudolph, Artistic Change at St.-Denis: Abbot Suger’s Program and the Early Twelfth-Century Controversy over Art (Princeton, 1990), argued for the primacy of an Augustinian influence on Hugh and Suger, an argument further supported by Sarah Spence, Texts and Self and in the Twelfth Century (Cambridge, 1996), pp. 28–33. 32 A suggestive comparison of eastern and western attitudes toward images is given by Daniel Barbu, “L’image byzantine: production et usages,” Annales, 51/1 (1996), pp. 71–92. For an analytic survey of postmillenial debates about and attitudes toward sacred images, see Schmitt, “L’occident, Nicée II et les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” pp. 282–301. Further appreciations of the role and meaning of actual images in eleventh- and twelfth-century western culture may be found in J.-Cl. Schmitt, “Les images classificatrices,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 147 (1989), pp. 311–341; Schmitt, “La culture de l’imago;” Giles Constable, Three Studies in Medieval Religious and Social Thought (Cambridge, 1995), pp. 179–217; L’Image. Fonctions et usages des images dans l’Occident médiéval, particularly the following contributions by: J. Baschet, “Introduction: L’image objet,” pp. 7–26, Schmitt, Imago: de l’image B l’imaginaire, pp. 29–37; La visione e lo Sguardo nel medio evo. View and Vision in the Middle Ages. Micrologus V–VI (1997–1998), in particular the essays by Thomas Ricklin, “Vue et vision chez Guillaume de Conches et Guillaume de Saint-Thierry. Le récit d’une controverse,” V, pp. 19–41 and Michele C. Ferrari, “Imago visibilis Christi. Le volto santo de Lucques et les images authentiques au Moyen Age,” VI, pp. 29–42. Prescholastic focus on the ontological property of image may explain schoolmen’s neglect of Carolingian debates (above, notes 2–3). Furthermore, in prescholastic times, any danger of religious materialism was connected primarily with relics since most of the images that populated the religious world then assumed the appearance of relics and gained power from their coexistence with relics. Such images had the bodily appearance of a sculpture; they represented the reality of the presence of the holy within the world, on terms similar to those of the relic, Schmitt, “L’Occident, Nicée II et

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that attracted western theoretical attention was more anthropological.33 They pondered the relationship of likeness said by Genesis 1:27 to exist between God and man-made-in-the-image-of-God. In so doing, they necessarily reflected upon image, and its modes of and capacity for representation. However, because they thought about image in terms of the resemblance between God and man, and among the divine persons of the Trinity, they also had to confront unlikeness. They were struck by the realization of difference (in the case of God and man) and the need for distinction (in the case of the persons of the Trinity). Contemplating the dialectic of distinction and resemblance they veered away from a definition of images as synonymous with visual likeness. They thereby displaced likeness from the visual world of appearances and reformulated it as an active principle, as a relationship between form and matter, which involved gradations of contact and presence. Whereas the Byzantine image was material but insubstantial, and referred to its model through visual likeness, the image conceived in the prescholastic west was conceptual, rooted in substance, referring to its model through participation. Prescholastic interest in matters of identity, identitas, arose as a concern for the extent to which Christ, whom they conceived to be the image of God, was identical to what

les images du VIIIe au XIIIe siècle,” pp. 285–286, Belting, Image and Resemblance, pp. 297–298, 301–302. Nevertheless, there also existed between the seventh and the twelfth centuries pictorial holy images and texts on sacred images, both of which explicitly distinguished art from its invisible archetype while endowing depictions of holy persons with the sole power to evoke spiritual visions, Kessler, “Real Absence,” pp. 112–134. In the mid-twelfth century, Suger liberated such images from their restriction to the corporeal world with the idea, exemplified at St Denis, “that the sensible world can mediate between God and man,” Kessler, “Real Absence,” pp. 112–134, 148; Jean-Claude Bonne, “Entre l’image et la matière: la choséité du sacré en Occident,” in Les images dans les sociétés médiévales: Pour une histoire compare, Bulletin de l’Institut Historique Belge de Rome 69 (1999), pp. 77–111; J.-Cl. Bonne, “Pensée de l’art et pensée théologique dans les écrits de Suger,” in Artistes et philosophes, éducateurs? ed. Christian Descamps (Paris, 1994), pp. 13–50. In her Texts and Self and in the Twelfth Century, p. 50, Sarah Spence’s analysis of Suger’s De administratione concludes that, for Suger, that which is signified is anchored in its signifier, that is, an object belonging to this world. This relative collapse of a distinction between physical and spiritual in the signifying mode of images, and of signs in general, is one object of the present essay. 33 The fundamental work is that of Javelet, Image et ressemblance au 12e siècle. For additional insights see David N. Bell, The Image and Likeness. The Augustinian Spirituality of William of Saint-Thierry (Kalamazoo, 1984); Gerhart B. Ladner, Ad Imaginem Dei: The Image of Man in Medieval Art (Latrobe, 1965); G.B. Ladner, Images and Ideas in the Middle Ages (Rome, 1983); John E. Sullivan, The Image of God. The Doctrine of St. Augustine and its Influence (Dubuque, Iowa, 1963).

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he represented, that is the Godhead, and to what represented him, the eucharist. Identitas at this time therefore involved reflections on identicality, so that the prescholastic theory of image intersected incarnational thinking and the doctrine of real presence. In asserting that the eucharist was not a figure of speech but truly the image of God and the substance of the God-man, prescholastic theologians defined the eucharist as actually being what it signifies. Such doctrine, in producing a conflation of sign and thing, disables the dynamics of reference and undermines the semiotics of representation. Thus, although this mode of signification pertained strictly only to the eucharist, the argument for real presence and its principle of immanence ultimately realigned theories of representation, with consequences for society as a whole. Images came to be invested with powers necessary to represent persons in situations requiring commitment and future accountability.34 Prescholastic notions of image, as of so many other matters, drew extensively upon the Augustinian corpus.35 Augustine had insisted upon a concept of image which included the idea of likeness, proposing that while some likenesses can be images, all images are likenesses, but of a certain kind. For, as he wrote in his Unfinished Commentary on Genesis, an image is dependent on an original model from which it is expressed; if one thing is not born of another, it cannot be called an

34 Despite my great admiration for Hans Belting’s sensitive and formidable work on images, I cannot concur with his conclusion in Likeness and Presence, p. 305, that “while [in the west] images were invested with powers necessary to represent a legal person, this custom was not seen as a philosophical problem.” It is true that no specific treatise was produced on the representational capacity of images, but the schools, scriptoria, and chanceries responsible for the earliest production of non-royal sealed charters were staffed by theologians preoccupied with the definitions of person, image, and identity, see chapter 6 above. On the reciprocal interaction between prescholastic theory of image, incarnational thinking, and the doctrine of real presence, see note 22 above. 35 Augustine deals with the doctrine of image principally in De Genesi ad litteram Liber unus imperfectus (ca. 393–395), 57 (PL XXXIV, col. 242; see text in note 36 below); De diversis quaestionibus octoginta tribus, (ca. 388–396), 51.4, De diversis quaestionibus octoginta tribus. De octo Dulcitii quaestionibus, ed. Almut Mutzenbecher (Turhnout, 1975; CCSL 44A), pp., PL XL, cols. 33–34; and Quaestiones in Heptateuchum Libri VII (419 ce), V.4, Quaestionum in Heptateuchum libri VII. Locutionum in Heptateuchum libri VII. De octo quaestionibus ex veteri testamento, ed. Johannes Fraipont, Donatien De Bruyne (Turnhout, 1958; CCSL 33), pp., PL XXXIV, cols. 749–50; see text in note 36 below). In the compilation that he made of Augustine’s comments on the nature of images, John Heijke gathered 142 texts: St. Augustine’s comments on “Imago Dei” [an anthology from all his works exclusive of the De Trinitate] (Worcester, Mass., 1960).

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image:36 When giving examples of likeness which are also images, in the Unfinished Literal Commentary on Genesis and in the Liber Quintus (Quaestiones in Deuteronomium) of his Quaestionum in Heptateuchum libri septem, Augustine listed without distinction the likeness of a child to its parents, of a painting to its subject, or of a mirror-image to the source of its reflection. Although Augustine insisted once again that an image must be expressed from a model, he now distinguished between two types of expressed images: the first, where originator/progenitor/ prototype and image are of the same substance, as in the case of Father and Son,—and the second, where they are not, as in the case of painter and painting.37 This distinction between the two types of images parallels

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De Genesi ad litteram Liber imperfectus, 57, PL XXXIV, col. 242: ‘Et dixit Deus, Faciamus hominem ad imaginem et similitudinem nostram.’ Omnis imago similis est ei cujus imago est; nec tamen omne quod simile est alicui, etiam imago est ejus: sicut in speculo et pictura, quia imagines sunt, etiam similes sunt; tamen si alter ex altero natus non est, nullus eorum imago alterius dici potest. Imago enim tunc est, cum de aliquo exprimitur. Augustine’s statement that likeness does not necessarily include the idea of image is also found in passages from De diversis quaestionibus, 51, PL XL, cols. 33–34, and from the Quaestiones in Heptateuchum (see note 37 below), where the difference between image and resemblance is further illustrated by the fact that though twins are alike, one is not the image of the other. 37 Quaestiones in Heptateuchum, V [Deuteronomous]. 4, ed. Fraipont and de Bruyne, pp. 276–277 (PL XXXIV, col. 749): Ne feceritis iniquitatem, et faciatis vobis ipsis sculptilem similitudinem, omnem imaginem. Quid intersit inter similitudinem et imaginem quaeri solet. Sed hic non uideo quid interesse voluerit, nisi aut duobus istis uocabulis unam rem significauerit aut similitudinem dixerit, si uerbi gratia fiat statua uel simulacrum habens effigiem humanam, non tamen alicuius hominis exprimantur lineamenta, sicut pictores uel statuarii faciunt intuentes eos quos pingunt seu fingunt; anc enim imaginem dici nemo dubitauerit: secundum quam distinctionem omnis imago etiam similitudo est, non omnis similitudo etiam imago est. Vnde si gemini inter se similes sint, similitudo dici potest alterius cuiuslibet in altero, non imago. Si autem patri filius similis sit, etiam imago recte dicitur, ut sit pater prototypus, unde illa imago expressa uideatur. Quarum aliae sunt eiusdem substantiae, sicut filius; aliae non ejusdem, sicut pictura. Vnde illud, quod in Genesi scriptum est: fecit deus hominem ad imaginem dei, manifestum est ita dictum, ut non eiusdem substantiae sit imago quae facta est. Si enim eiusdem esset, non facta, sed genita diceretur. Sed quod non addidit, ‘et similitudinem,’ cum superius dictum esset: faciamus hominem ad imaginem et similitudinem nostram, quibusdam uisum est similitudinem aliquid amplius esse, quam imaginem, quod homini reformando per Christi gratiam postea seruaretur. See Robert A. Markus, “ ‘Imago’ and ‘Similitudo’ in Augustine,” Revue des études augustiniennes 10 (1964), pp. 125–43, reprinted in Sacred and Secular: Studies on Augustine and Latin Christianity (Aldershot, 1994), no. XVI; R.A. Markus, “Signs, Communication, and Community in Augustine’s De Doctrina Christiana,” in De Doctrina Christiana: A Classic of Western Culture, ed. Duane W.H. Arnold and Pamela Bright (Notre Dame, 1995), pp. 97–108; reprinted in Signs and Meanings: World and Text in Ancient Christianity (Liverpool, 1996), chapter 4; and Bell, The Image and Likeness, p. 36.

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another difference, dear to Augustine and to the prescholastic tradition: that between an image begotten (genita) and an image made (facta). For Augustine, therefore, an image could partake of substance and of form, and likeness similarly might either inhere in substance or be present by virtue of form (qualities). Thus, likeness is localized, but it is not thereby explained. Augustine accounted for the likeness in an image by invoking the principle of participation, an idea he directly adopted from Neoplatonic thought in which a thing is, not by virtue of its own being, but simply because it emanates from and therefore participates in True Being. For Augustine the Christian, however, such participation could not be the result of emanation as it was for Plato but must be the result of God’s will.38 This Augustinian legacy, which considered images in terms of the wider concept of likeness, presented difficulties for eleventh- and twelfth-century thought and practice. First, Augustine’s notion of resemblance in substance between God and his son was problematic, for that which is identical in substance cannot be said merely to resemble or to “be like.”39 Second, although Augustine invoked the participation of man in God to explain man’s resemblance, he was satisfied that God was the principle of all participation and therefore did not find it necessary to prove the principle of participation nor to present a systematic theory of participation. Third, Augustine, who employed reflected, imprinted, and copied images indiscriminately in his treatises, does not seem to have explored the distinctions suggested

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Bell, The Image and Likeness, pp. 24–25. Already in his treatise against Arianism, Adversus Arium, PL VIII, col. 1039D, Marius Victorinus (d. 370) had applied Aristotle’s Categories (11a17) to the Trinitarian problems of his time, proposing a definition of likeness as that which exists between things by virtue of their qualities, not their substances, for things of the same substance are said to be of the same substance, not like: “Arius dicit: Filium factum, scilicet plenum Deum, unigenitum, immutabilem, qui antequam crearetur non fuerit, propterea quod non sit ingenitus. Haec eadem Eusebius, adjiciens, quod filius omnia facienti sit similis: nos contra, non enim similem, sed eumdem dicimus, quippe ex eadem substantia,” Markus, “‘Imago’ and ‘Similitudo’ in Augustine,” p. 128. In prescholastic times, the operative nature of the resemblance between the persons of the Trinity provoked much controversy. Abelard, in particular, was condemned as “Arian” for his proposition that identity between things can be described in at least five ways: by essence and number, in property, by definition, by likeness, and by incommunicability, Jean Jolivet, “Sur quelques critiques de la théologie d’Abélard,” Archives d’histoire doctrinale et littéraire du Moyen Age 38 (1963), pp. 7–51, at pp. 29–32, 34–35, 50; John Marenbon, The Philosophy of Peter Abelard (Cambridge, 1997), pp. 150–155. 39

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by the different iconic modes per se. While all images were expressed from a model, the mode of their “expression” seems to have been a matter of indifference to the bishop of Hippo.40 Not so, however, for the prescholastics who added additional levels of complexity to the Augustinian corpus of thoughts on images. Even while focusing upon the mimetic economy of the image, schoolmen innovated. They explored the nature of reproductive modalities, the role these played in the image’s capacity to represent its model, and the meaning these modalities imparted to the resemblance between archetype and image. In distinguishing between reproductive modes, twelfth-century scholars brought into the heuristic of signification the mechanics of likeness between an image and its prototype, thereby providing a means for engaging and defining resemblance and participation. Thus, prescholastics actively considered the modulation of mimesis between object and model, and it is to their intellectual constructs, and their import, that I now wish to turn—but not before, once again, considering Augustine. Mirror From Augustine onward, the creation of man in the image of God had meant that human intellect, will, and memory were vestiges of the Trinity. Though Augustine likened these divine vestiges in the human soul to a mirror tarnished by the stain of sin, he nevertheless considered that they, as images of God, were adapted to the understanding of God.41 In terms of this analogy, the soul was at once image (reflection)

40 Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 139–45; Bell, The Image and Likeness, pp. 22–23. See below at p. 193. 41 Augustine links speculum and imago in several passages of the De Trinitate XV, cap. 20, 39: “De creatura etiam quam fecit Deus, quantum valuimus, admonuimus eos qui rationem de rebus talibus poscunt, ut invisibilia ejus, per ea quae facta sunt, sicut possent, intellecta conspicerent (Rom. I, 20), et maxime per rationalem vel intellectualem creaturam, quae facta est ad imaginem Dei; per quod velut speculum, quantum possent, si possent, cernerunt Trinitatem Deum, in nostra memoria, intellegentia, voluntate,” Sancti Aurelii Augustini De Trinitate libri XV, ed. William J. Mountain (Turnhoult, 1968 ; CCLS 50–50A), pp. (PL XLII, col. 1088). See further examples in De Trinitate XV, cap. 8,14 (PL XLII, col. 1067–69); XV, cap. 10–15, 17–23 (PL XLII, col. 1055), XV, cap. 14–23, 24–44 (PL XLII, col. 1091). These passages may also be consulted in The Trinity, trans. Stephen McKenna (Washington, 1963), pp. 469–470,

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and sense perception (sight). Augustine, however, when discussing sight, had been careful to distinguish between the image passively received and temporarily reflected in the sense organ (the eye) and the internal image constructed by the soul, wherein it persisted and enabled true perception. Furthermore, even as Augustine in effect assigned to the eye the function of a mirror, he did not use the mirror simile to describe ocular perception but compared it to a trace made in water.42 Centuries later, Hugh (d. 1141) and Richard (d. 1173) of St Victor continued to emphasize that the rational soul was uniquely able to serve as the principal and privileged mirror to see God.43 Yet, even though 475–511; see Edward P. Nolan, Now through a Glass Darkly: Specular Images of Being and Knowing from Vergil to Chaucer (Ann Arbor, 1990), pp. 58–59, 84–85. 42 Augustine, Ennarationes in Psalmos, ed. Eligius Dekkers and Johannes Fraipont, 3 vols. (Turnhout, 1956; CCLS 38–40), vol. 39, Psalmum CIII, Sermo 1.4, p. 1476; Herbert Grabes, The Mutable Glass. Mirror-imagery in titles and texts of the Middle Age and English Renaissance (Cambridge, 1973), pp. 83–85. 43 Pierre Courcelles, Connais-toi toi-même, de Socrate à saint Bernard, 3 vols. (Paris, 1974), vol. 1, pp. 240–244; Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 377–378, 384; R. Javelet, “Psychologie des auteurs spirituels au XIIe siècle,” Revue des sciences religieuses 33 (1959), pp. 18–64, 97–164, 209–266, at pp. 230–255; Richard of St Victor, De praeparatione animi ad contemplationem liber dictus Benjamin minor, PL CXCVI, cols. 51C–D: “Praecipuum et principale speculum ad videndum Deum, animus rationalis, absque dubio invenit seipsum. Si enim invisibilia Dei per ea quae facta sunt, intellecta conspiciuntur, ubi, quaeso, quam in ejus imagine cognitionis vestigia expressius impressa, reperiuntur? Hominem secundum animam ad Dei similitudinem factum et legimus, et credimus, et idcirco quandiu per fidem, et non per speciem ambulamus, quandiu adhuc per speculum et in aenigmate videmus, ad ejus, ut ita dixerim, imaginariam visionem aptius speculum, quam spiritum rationalem invenire non possumus. Tergat ergo speculum suum, mundet spiritum suum, quisquis sitit videre Deum sum;” text translated in The Twelve Patriarchs, the Mystical Art, Book Three of the Trinity, trans. and intro. G. Zinn (New York, 1979), pp. 129–130; Hugh of St Victor, De sacramentis christianae fidei, PL CLXXVI, col. 219A: “et primum quod in ea [ratione] erat, quoniam et hoc illi erat primum et principale speculum veritatis contemplandae inspiciamus. In eo igitur primum et principaliter invisibilis Deus, quantum ad manifestationem expositum est, videri poterat quod illius imagini et similitudini proximum et cognatum magis factum erat. Hoc autem ipsa ratio erat et mens ratione utens quo ad primam similutidinem Dei facta erat ut per se invenire posset eum a quo facta erat; for the text in English, see Hugh of St Victor, On the Sacraments of the Christian Faith, trans. Roy J. Deferrari (Cambridge, MA, 1951), pp. 42–43. John of Salisbury deftly evokes how human reason is an image that sees: “Est igitur ratio speculum quo cuncta videntur/officioque oculi fungitur atque manus/ conscia naturae verum scrutatur et aequi/arbitra virtutum sola ministrat opes,” Entheticus de dogmate philosophorum, verse 655–670, PL CXCIX, col. 979C. On the importance of the relationship between divine reason, human reason, and the notion of image for prescholastic anthropology, see Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 169–81, 378–79. A typical statement is that of Peter Lombard: “Imago creationis est in qua creatus est homo, scilicet ratio,” Commentarius in Psalmos Davidicos,

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the explicit mirror metaphor set up by the schoolmen located the frame of God’s identity in the field of vision, the soul-mirror-eye could only imperfectly comprehend God since, soiled by the blotch of sin, it was incapable of receiving a faithful image and of representing accurately. Hugh of St Victor, for instance, denounced the soul’s bad sight.44 When commenting upon Paul’s statement that one sees when “per speculum, in aenigmate,” through a mirror, in an enigma, or through a glass darkly (1 Corinthians 13.12), prescholastics were

4.7, PL CXCI, col. 88B. Hugh of St.-Victor (in De sacramentis christiane fidei I, 10, De fide, cap. 9: De sacramento fidei et virtute) stresses the visual dimension of faith, which he considers to be an act of vision undertaken by a purified being through the mediation of images in order to reach contemplation of the divine: “Sed quod est aenigma, et quod est speculum in quo videtur imago donec ipsa res videri possit? Aenigma est Scriptura sacra. Quare? quia obscuram habet significationem. Speculum est cor tuum, si tamen mundum fuerit et extersum et clarificatum. Imago in speculo fides in corde tuo. Ipsa enim fides imago est, et sacramentum. Contemplatio autem futura, res et virtus sacramenti. Qui fidem non habent nihil vident; qui fidem habent jam aliquid videre incipiunt, sed imaginem solam. Si enim fidelis nihil videret, ex fide illuminatio non esset, nec dicerentur illuminati fideles. Si autem jam ipsam rem viderent, et non amplius videndum aliquid exspectarent, non per speculum in aenigmate, sed facie ad faciem viderent,” PL CLXXVI, cols. 342C–D); English trans, in On the Sacraments of the Christian Faith, p. 181: “The dark manner is Sacred Scripture. Why? Because it has obscure meaning. The glass is your heart, if, however, it be clean and clear and clarified. The image in the glass is the faith in your heart. For faith itself is image and sacrament. But future contemplation is the thing and the virtue of the sacrament. Those who have no faith see nothing, those who have faith already begin to see something but only the image. For if the faithful see nothing, there would be no enlightenment from faith nor would the faithful be called enlightened. But if they already saw the thing itself and did not await something more to be seen, they would not see through a glass in a dark manner but face to face.” Richard, however, also proposed that, properly observed, Nature might also reveal the Creator: Richard of St.-Victor, Benjamin major, II, 12, De tertio contemplationis genere: “Nunc vero de tertio contemplationis genere videamus. Ad hoc itaque genus pertinet quoties per rerum visibilium similitudinem rerum invisibilium qualitatem deprehendimus, quoties per visibilia mundi invisibilia Dei cognoscimus, ut constet quod scriptum reperitur, quia invisibilia Dei a creatura mundi per ea quae facta sunt intellecta conspiciuntur,” PL CXCVI, col. 89D; text translated in The Twelve Patriarchs, the Mystical Art, Book Three of the Trinity, p. 190; Jeffrey F. Hamburger, “Speculations on Speculation,” in Deutsche Mystik im abendländischen Zusammenhang, ed. Walter Haug and Wolfgang Schneider-Lastin (Tubingen, 2000), pp. 353–408, at p. 369. 44 Soliloquium de arrha animae, PL CLXXVI, col. 953D: “ANIMA: oculus cuncta videt, seipsum non videt, et eo lumine, quo reliqua cernimus, ipsam, in qua positum est lumen, faciem nostram non videmus.” Courcelles, Connais-toi toi-même, vol. 1, p. 240. It may not be straining the prescholastic position too much to refer here to “the glassy metaphorics of the mirror”; the expression is Homi J. Bhabha’s, “Interrogating Identity,” in The Real Me: Postmodernism and the Question of Identity, ed. L. Appignanesi, ICA Documents 6 (London, 1986), pp. 5–12, at p. 6.

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concerned with limpidity and lucidity, which they equated with purity of the soul. For the mirror-mind to capture the divine image and thus to achieve contemplation and knowledge of God, it must be properly oriented and, most importantly, be pure and clean.45 The soul must be polished better to reflect divine light so as to see, not the light, but by the light.46 Indeed, for Hugh of St Victor, to see by means of a mirror meant merely to see an image; only to see something face to face was to view reality.47 For Hervé de Bourg-Dieu (d. 1150) as well, to look in a mirror was to see nothing but an image.48 The Benedictine abbot of of Bonneval, Ernald (d. ca. 1156) recognized that an image of himself in a mirror reflected his own features, but he still emphasized that in contemplating this image he was not seeing himself.49 Thus, while Ernald’s mirror simile testifies that physical similarity exists between an image of man and the man himself, it also holds that man’s relation to himself and to the world can not be the same as direct visual perception through a mirror. In discussing the representative capacity of the mirror-image, Robert of Melun went beyond the issue of tarnished opacity to denounce the imperfect mediation of the mirror, whose image lacks the ability to represent an object’s tri-dimensionality.50 Alan of Lille (d. 1203), in

45 Hugh of St Victor: “Speculum est cor tuum si tamen mundum fuerit et extersum et clarificatum,” De sacramentis, PL CLXXVI, col. 342C; Gerhoh of Reichersberg: “Mali operis, quod ego feci, tu obliviscere, ac de libro memoriae tuae dele, sed intende mihi vel in me, quem tu ad imaginem et similitudinem tuam fecisti. Specie tua et pulchritudine tua intende in me tanquam in speculum, neque desinas polire, donec videas in me relucentem tuae imaginis ac similitudinis pulchram faciem,” Commentarius aureus in psalmos et cantica ferialia, 6.54, PL CXCIII, cols. 1656A–B. 46 In the felicitous words of Ritamary Bradley, “The Speculum Image in Medieval Mystical Writers,” in The Medieval Mystical Tradition in England, ed. Marion Glascoe (Cambridge, 1984), pp. 9–27, at p. 18. 47 “Quid est per speculum videre? Imaginem videre. Quid est facie ad faciem videre? Rem videre,” De Sacramentis, PL CLXXVI, col. 342. 48 “In speculo autem non nisi imago cernitur,” Commentaria in epistolas divi Pauli: In epistolam ii ad Corinthios, PL CLXXXI, col. 1031D. 49 “Ego cum me in speculo vel in purissimo fonte intueor, non meipsum video, sed exprimit mihi imago mea omnem habitum meum vel gestum, et, quantum ex facie indicari potest, ipsum mentis affectum, ut ibi videas utrum decolor sim an coloratus, et manifeste intelligas utrum turbatus videar, an quietus,” Tractatus de operibus sex dierum, PL CLXXXIX, col. 1533B–C. 50 “Nulla tamen creatura ipsam sapientiam Dei rationem habuit nisi creatura rationalis, quae sola sapientiam Dei potest imitari per intelligentiam et cognitionem veri et amorem boni. Habet enim naturam discernendi inter verum et falsum et bonum et malum, appetendi bonum malumque spernendi. Ideo etiam solus homo de creaturis corporeis ad imaginem Dei et similitudinem conditus esse discebatur. Est autem aliud

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urging the purification of the soul-mirror, pointed out that such purification should altogether involve bypassing the images reflected in or seen by the soul since such images in fact stand in the way of contemplating eternal realities.51 The mirror-image was thus ambiguous for schoolmen. Its metaphorical use manifests a certain distrust of image per se; mirrors seem to need lots of cleaning,52 and such cleansing in turn involves escape from matter.53 A principal implication of the mirror image is simply that image is unsubstantial, and man’s resemblance to God is spiritual.

ipsam sapientiam Dei imaginem habere et aliud in ipsa imaginem habere. Sicut aliud est aliquid in speculo imaginem habere et aliud est ad imaginem speculi aliquid factum esse. Non enim verum est quod omne illud quod in speculo apparet, ad imaginem speculi factum sit. Nam quod ad imaginem speculi factum est, ipsum imaginum, rerum ac formarum capax esse necesse est et eas repraesentare posse. “Sententiae magistri Roberti de Meleduno, liber primus, pars undecima, Bruges, Bibliothèque publique de la Ville, Cod. lat. 191, f. 136 recto-a, quoted in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, p. 140, 288. On the works of Robert of Melun, see Franz Bliemetzrieder, “Robert von Melun und die Schule Anselms von Laon,” Zeitschrift für Kircheng 53 (1934), pp. 117–170; Œuvres de Robert de Melun, ed. Raymond M. Martin, 3 vols, in 4 (Louvain, 1932–1952), includes the Quaestiones de divina pagina (vol. 1), the Quaestiones de epistolis Pauli (vol. 2), and the first book (parts 1–6) of the Sententiae (vol. 3, 1–2); parts 7–11 and Book 2 (parts 1–2) of the Sententiae remain unpublished. Beryl Smalley, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, 2nd ed. (Notre Dame, 1964), p. 68, note 1, reports O. Lottin’s suggestion that Robert might have used a commentary by Anselm of Laon on the Pauline epistles. 51 Expositio prosae de angelis, “Sequitur: ‘mentibus defecatis ab ymaginibus’ [quote from the Ps. John Scotus], id est ab imaginationibus purgatis. Cum enim contemplamur Deum, ut testatur summus Boetius in libro de Trinitate, non oported nos ad ymaginationes deduci, ut antropomorphonite (sic) deducti sunt, qui Deum corporalibus lineamentis distentum esse crediderunt . . .” Expositio prosae de angelis, in Alain de Lille, Textes inédits, Marie-Thérèse d’Alverny (Paris, 1965), pp. 205–206; On Alan of Lille and the mirror see Nolan, Now through a Glass Darkly, pp. 98–102. A similar idea is found in Garnier of Rochefort (abbot of Clairvaux 1186, and bishop of Langres ca. 1193), Sermones in festa domini et sanctorum, Sermo 31, In nativitate B. Virginis Mariae: “A specula vero speculatio dicitur, quando mens ita sursum ducitur, ut nullis signis praecedentibus, nullis causis subsistentibus, mens ab omni imagine defaecata, ad superessentialem et infinitivam originem simpliciter et reciproce refertur,” PL CCV, col. 766B. 52 Although twelfth-century Europe was in the process of re-discovering the ancient art of making glass mirrors, it was not until the thirteenth century that these glassy contraptions began to supplant the polished metal mirrors that had been in use until then, Grabes, The Mutable Glass, pp. 4, 72–73. 53 As Bradley points out, “The Speculum Image,” p. 11.

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Located in the mind, that is, in the rational part of the soul, such resemblance stresses spiritual reform and excludes incarnational imagelikeness.54 After polishing, the mirror-mind is held both to reflect its prototype, that is, God, and to afford a means of seeing that reflection. In this version of the mirror-simile, the image of God in man has itself become an eye which sees; human speculation discovers the inner self as the reflection of another.55 This other, God, however clearly reflected nevertheless remains ultimately unseen since a mirror-image can not actually be its own prototype. Such an image can only reveal that the presence of God is hidden. By conceptualizing the mirror, and also the soul, as images capable of seeing, prescholastics expressed doubts about the principle of a mirror’s image, considering, as did Paul, that a mirror does not merely reflect but transforms. For when a mirror produces an image, it converts an origin into a result, a process which posits the origin as un-representable. Furthermore, in a mirror, things appear where they are not. By these logics, there might be no presence of God in man. The conclusion that God and human interiority do not coincide, that truth is not in man, implied irreconcilability between self knowledge and the knowledge of God, a tension which prescholastics, who were very eager to promote self knowledge as a divine 54

Ladner, Ad Imaginem Dei, p. 14. See, for instance, Anselm of Laon: “Plasmavit Deus hominem de materia, videlicet de terra fecit, de non materia, id est de anima ad imaginem et similitudinem suam,” in Munich, Staatsbibliothek, Ms. Clm. 13109, f. 30 verso-a. See note 51 above for Alan of Lille’s denunciation of the “anthropomorphonite” who believed that the resemblance between God and man was corporeal. For that very reason, the mirror-image challenged divine incarnation. 55 Herbert of Bosham, his Liber Melorum, in Herberti de Boseham S. Thomae Cantuariensis clerici a secretis opera quae extant omnia, vol. 2, ed. John Allen Giles (Oxford, 1846), pp. 108–109 (PL CXC, cols. 1358A–B), stated that our interior eye could reveal what is within man as the reflection of the Other: “Verum hic noster rationis oculus quid tam longe tam late per aetherea et aeria, per coelestia et terrestria sic evagatur? In nobismet est quod quaerimus, in nobis ipsis prae caeteris est, unde haec prima nostra unitas nobis manifestari possit, et quod est et etiam ex parte aliqua quid ipsa sit. In nobis, inquam, qui prae caeteris ad ipsius sumus imaginem et similitudinem conditi. Unde et nobis ex nobis ipsis et in nobis familiarior cognitio haec. Nostrum igitur rationis oculum retorqueamus in nos ipsos. Ecce enim quia mens nostra rationalis rationis habet judicium ad discernendum, voluntatis arbitrium ad eligendum, et memoriae thesaurum ad reponendum. Hoc quod nunc dicimus rationis nostrae oculo videmus et experimur in nobis. Nihilominus etiam quod non a nobis haec nostra nobis sunt sed ab alio. Quid enim habes quod non acceperis?” Courcelles, Connais-toi toi-même, vol. 1, pp. 237–253, quotes texts by Anselm of Canterbury (d. 1109) and by the Victorines in which introspection is held to reveal to man that everything he sees in himself is in fact not himself.

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capacity, sought to reduce. Finally, the metaphor of the mirror operated a conflation between eye and soul so that the soul came to share some of the limitations associated with the physical and the sensorial: passive reception, inability fully to understand what is being reflected.56 As they wrestled with the negative implications of the mirror-image, prescholastics came to develop the interpretive potential of another form of image, the imprint. Imprint The topos of the imago impressa and of its corollary, the sigillum, is extensively present in prescholastic rhetoric. Only a representative sampling can be offered here. With a simple statement, “Imago, id est similitudinis impressio,”57 prescholastics indicated their belief that the imprinted image actualizes a resemblance to its prototype. In so doing, they established the possibility of exploiting the distinction between image and resemblance even while affirming a necessary continuity between the two. This posture may further be seen in Gilbert de Hoiland’s (d. 1172) exhortation: “Imprint yourself to him [God] so that his image may be expressed in you, make yourself conform to his seal.”58 Imprinting, which is not a continuous but a repetitious process, warrants gradual human reformation because it permits a progressive resemblance to the divine model. By ‘imprinting himself to God’s seal,” man is conceived as participating in and pursuing God’s creation, while self-reformation through repeated imprinting is made possible by the presence of God’s seal within man. As a text from the school

56 See note 42 above, Augustine’s careful distinction between sight and the soul’s sculpted image. 57 Hervé de Bourg-Dieu: “Vir quidem non debet velare caput suum, id est non debet habere signum servitutis vel potestatis super se, sed libertatis, quia non habet aliquid super se nisi Deum. Quoniam imago et gloria est Dei. Imago, id est similitudinis impressio, et gloria Dei cernitur in viro, quia unus Deus unum fecit hominem,” In epistola I ad Cor., PL CLXXXI, col. 926B. This gloss is part of a distinctly gendered argument in which Hervé justified the veiling of women’s heads. 58 Sermo xi: “Si quaesisti, si invenisti, si tenuisti dilectum tuum, tene quem tenes; tene, inhaere; imprime te illi, ut ejus in te velut expressa reformetur imago, huic fias conformis sigillo. Eris autem si adhaeseris: qui enim adhaeret Deo, unus est spiritus. Forte sicut durae materiae difficulter in te primo fit ejus impressio: etsi laboriosa impressio, sed dulcis adhaesio,” Sermones in canticum Salomonis, PL CLXXXIV, col. 60A, Gilbert of Hoyland, Sermons on the Song of Songs, Vol. 1, trans. Lawrence J. Braceland (Kalamazoo, 1978; Cistercian Publications).

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of Laon put it: “Man, it seems to me, has been created in the image of God, in his reason. For, as we recognize something by its image or somebody by his seal, similarly the Creator is recognized by his creature, by reason as by His seal.”59 Man’s reason is the imprint of God’s seal. Indeed, as Peter Lombard (d. 1160) pointed out in his commentaries on Paul’s epistle to the Romans, “as long as his sins lose him the seal of the image man will remain only a creature,” a mere animal.60 Yet, even though sin may break the seal of God in men, leaving them animals,61 even though the image may no longer express its model, the imprint, albeit deformed, nevertheless remains. For, as Rupert of Deutz commented (d. 1129), human reason was sculpted in man’s soul by an imprint of God’s image and proceeded solely from the Creator’s craftsmanship. Thus, as Rupert stated, the rational creature might lose its likeness to God but not the divine image directly imprinted by God.62 This direct and permanent imprinting acted, in the previously cited quotation from Gilbert of Hoiland evoked above, as a charge animating desire for conformity with the maker of the imprint; but for the prescholastics generally, man’s movement toward his ma(r)ker depended upon his own will to achieve resemblance to God. In such self-imprinting, activated by man utilizing the divine image within himself, resemblance with the prototype was only a latent, contingent, potential. Ever since Adam’s fall, human will to self-improvement had proven deficient, which is why a return to the likeness to God depended upon a refurbishment through a new application of the

59 “Homo enim, ut mihi videtur, ad imaginem Dei factus est per rationem. Sicut enim per imaginem vel sigillum aliqua res vel aliqua persona cognoscitur, sic Creator per rationem quasi per sigillum a creatura cognoscitur; Sententiae Berolinenses. Eine neugefundene Sentenzensammlung aus der Schule des Anselm von Laon, ed. Friedrich Stegmüller, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 11 (1939), pp. 33–61, at p. 44; also quoted in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, p. 141. 60 “Quod nec de ipsis desperandum est, qui nondum crediderunt, qui et ipsi credituri sunt, et liberabuntur, qui nondum sunt filii Dei. Sed tantum creatura modo dicuntur, cum nondum gratiam adoptionis receperunt. Homo enim sigillo imaginis propter peccatum amisso remansit tantummodo creatura,” Sententiae in Omnes Divi Pauli Apostoli Epistolas: In epistolam ad Romanos, PL CXCI, col. 1443D. 61 Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 249, 293–295. 62 See for instance Rupert of Deutz, De divinis officiis,VII, 4, PL CLXXI, cols. 184B–C: “Potuit autem creatura rationalis amittere id quod ad similitudinem Dei facta est, non potuit vero eo carere quod ad imaginem Dei condita est. Quare? Quia, videlicet, divinae bonitatis imitatio, per quam Dei similitudino retinetur, creaturae quoque voluntatem exigit; rationalitas autem, quae impressione imaginis Dei humanae animae insculpta est, a sola Creatoris arte processit.”

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seal-die. This re-application was held to occur at baptism. Commenting on Paul’s notion that man was sealed in the Holy Spirit for the day of redemption,63 Peter Lombard posited that man, like the wax of the seal, was signed by an image left in him through the intercession of the Spirit; the form of the new human condition was an imprint regenerated by baptism.64 The thrust of such commentaries manipulating the seal metaphor therefore reveals several levels of imprinting at work in man’s ontological make-up. In one, the God-head has imprinted reason within man at creation; in an other, the Holy Spirit signs the seal of Christ upon man at baptism; in yet another, willing malleability to God’s seal by individual men and women may achieve re-formation and a progressive degree of resemblance to the divinity. In the twelfth-century, human nature was conceived, not only as having been created and re-created in the image and resemblance of God, but specifically as an imprint. Or, to put it differently, the concept of imprint invested the very notion of image with the power of transforming resemblance (a differential correspondence between two things) into participation, of identifying reference to a model (imitation, an existential relationship) with origin from an archetype (filiation, an essential relationship), and thus of translating representation into presence. This latter shift was fundamental in its explicit theorization of immanence, which posited the presence of God within the begotten Son and, through the Son, within the created human being as well. Here again, the seal metaphor was deployed by Abelard (d. 1142) and the Laon scholars to make the

63 “Et nolite contristare Spiritum sanctum Dei, in quo signati estis in die redemptionis.” Sententiae in Omnes Divi Pauli Apostoli Epistolas: In epistolam ad Ephesios 4: PL CXCII, col. 207A. 64 “Sicut contristatur homo cum de propria domo expellitur quam sibi aedificavit, ita Spiritus sanctus contristari dicitur cum de homine quem sibi mundavit in baptismo, per prava opera ejicitur, in quo. Quasi dicat: Nolite contristare Spiritum sanctum, quod non debetis, quia ipse est in quo, id est cujus gratia vos, estis signati, quasi dicat: Cera in sigillo ejus imagine vobis relicta, id est forma novitatis impressa vobis. [Haimo, Ambrosius] Vel, estis signati, id est discreti a malis. Et hoc in die redemptionis, id est baptismi.” Sententiae in Omnes Divi Pauli Apostoli Epistolas: In epistolam ad Ephesios 4, PL CXCII, cols. 208A–B. A twelfth-century gloss, erroneously attributed to Walafrid Strabo (d. 849), comments Paul’s verse in the same fashion: “Et nolite contristare. Per inobedientiam, Spiritum sanctum, id est praedicatorem veritatis, quod est Spiritum sanctum contristare quantum ad vos. Quod non debetis in quo vos quasi cera signati estis ejus imagine vobis relicta; vel estis signati, id est discreti a malis.” Ps.-Walafrid Strabo, Epistola ad Ephesios, PL CXIV, col. 597B.

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point. They brought into play the relationship between the bronze of the matrix (aes), the image engraved upon it (sigillum), and its waxen imprint (imago)—the conventional medieval lexicon of the twelfth century, by the way, though not systematic, used sigillum to designate both the material of the die and the motif engraved upon it, reserving imago for the imprinted image. In their metaphor, God is the seal’s inherent material (the very substance of its matrix); the Son is the figure of God’s substance, the image of God engraved within that matrix, which imprints itself upon the wax, the pliable human soul, enabling that soul to be configured as the Son.65 The application of the seal metaphor to angels gives further insight into the interpretive depth of the sigillographic motif. Gregory the Great (d. 604) derived from a passage in Ezekiel that the Bible spoke of the fallen archangel, Satan, as a signaculum similitudinis, a seal of resemblance. Gregory inaugurated an enduring exegetical tradition when he concluded that angels were seals of resemblance because, as purely rational beings, they had more likeness to God than man, who, as a corporeal being, was merely an imago Dei.66 Prescholastics massively

65 This text from the school of Laon is in Sententiae, Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Ms. Lat. 651, fol. 49 vo: “ratio est imago Dei, id est retinens in se ipsa de Deo notitiam; sicut enim cera, cui sigillum imprimitur, ipsius sigilli imaginationem retinet et ad memoriam reducit, ita ipsa ratione quasi quaedam materia et cera in qua Deus ad memoriam nostram reducitur,” quoted in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, pp. 46–47 at note 61. Abelard’s text comes from the Theologia Scholarium, II.13, ed. Buytaert and Mews, Petri Abaelardi Opera Theologica. III, pp. 46–47 (PL CLXXVIII, col. 1068D): “aes quidem est inter creaturas, in quo artifex operans, et imaginis regiae formam exprimens, regium facit sigillum, quod scilicet ad sigillands litteras, cum opus fuerit, cerae imprimatur.” See Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 73, 82–83, and vol. 2, pp. 46–47 at note 61, where Javelet gives additional uses of the seal metaphor in which the metaphor serves to stress the absolute resemblance and equality between God and Christ. See chapter 6 above, at notes 70–71, 75. See also the gloss of “illustra faciem tuam super servum tuum,” by Gerhoh of Reichersberg (d. 1169) in his Commentarius aureus in Psalmos et Cantica ferialia, II.30 (PL CXCIII, cols. 1306D–1307A): “hanc faciem tuam illustra super me servum tuum, et super alium quemlibet servum tuum. Tu es quasi aurea substantia, et filius tuus cum sit splendor gloriae et figura substantiae tuae, tanquam regalis aut pontificalis imago in auro purissimo exhibet se ipsum pro incorruptibili sigillo cuilibet servo suo sibi conformando se imprimens. Tuque, Pater, hoc ipsum sigillationis opus per ipsum, et cum ipso, et in ipso perficis in servis tuis eidem filio configurandis.” See chapter 6 above, at note 75, for a different contextualization of these texts. 66 “Ut enim Gregorius exponit: Ille primus angelus ideo ornatus et opertus ordinibus angelorum extitit quia dum cunctis agminibus angelorum praelatus est . . . qui non solum ad imaginem Dei ut homo, sed et signaculum similitudinis appellatus est” [Deus summe] [from the school of Laon], Munich, Staatsbibliothek, Ms. Clm. 22307,

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exploited the Gregorian theme. Peter of Blois (d. ca. 1211), for instance, wrote that the angel was created close to and in such conformity with God that the angel is a seal (signaculum) rather than, as man is, a seal impression.67 This reveals an interesting hierarchy, which Alan of Lille enlarged significantly. Christ is a seal (sigillum), he wrote, because Christ and God are consubstantial even as the incused image is intrinsic to the substance of the die. This confirms that sigillum, in this context as elsewhere, means seal matrix, that is, the die and the image incised in it. Given Peter’s and Alan’s differentiated use of sigillum and of signaculum, it is also relevant to note that sigillum then normally designated the great seal of contemporary elites, whereas signaculum was the contemporary term for a personal signet-ring, a seal to be sure, but lacking the great seal’s import and authority. Alan used the term signaculum as an analogue for the angel, whose rational nature resembles God. In Alan’s construct, man is analogized to imago, the imprinted image in wax. The waxen human imago initially resembles the formative die. Although it may later lose some of this resemblance, which is simply one of form rather than one of substance, the imago remains marked by the original imprinting. Lastly, a nonrational crea-

fol. 86v. Gregory’s commentary on Ezechiel 28. 12–13 (“Tu signaculum similitudinis, plenus sapientia et perfectus decore, in deliciis Paradisi Dei fuisti,” a text that refers to the fall of the king of Tyre) is found in XL Homiliarum in Evangelia libri duo, II. 34, PL LXXVI, col. 1250B: “Unde et ipsi angelo, qui primus est conditus, per prophetam dicitur: Tu signaculum similitudinis, plenus sapientia, et perfectus decore, in deliciis paradisi Dei fuisti (Ezek. XXVIII, 12). Ubi notandum quod non ad similitudinem Dei factus, sed signaculum similitudinis dicitur, ut quo in eo subtilior est natura, eo in illo imago Dei similius insinuetur expressa.” Gregory the Great, Forty gospel homilies, trans. David Hurst (Kalamazoo, 1990; Cistercian Studies Series 123), p. 286. 67 De amicitia Christiana et de dilectione Dei et proximi, PL CCVII, cols. 918A–B, and ed. and trans. Marie-Madeleine Davy, Un traité d’amour au XIIe siècle (Paris, 1932), pp. 358–360: “Tale signaculum ante praevaricationem suam se angelus apostata exprimebat, testimonio Ezechielis dicentis: Tu signaculum similitudinis, plenus sapientia et perfectus decore. Angelus siquidem in sua creatione tanta Deo conformitate est unitus, ut esset potius signaculum similitudinis, quam simile vel signatum. De sigillo quippe talis similitudo imaginaliter exprimitur qualis in eodem sigillo essentialiter habetur, et hoc homini competit. Angelis vero pro sua subtilitate naturae Deo expression similitudine adhaerebat, quia totus et tantummodo spiritus erat.” This text is also found in an anonymous work, the Liber seu tractatus de charitate, cap. XXI, PL CLXXXIV, cols. 617C–D which is a compilation of works by Richard of St.-Victor, Peter of Blois, and Bernard of Clairvaux. See a commentary on Peter’s text in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 162–163, and vol. 2, pp. 130–131. Peter of Blois (d. ca. 1211) was in charge of the royal seal at the court of Marguerite of Sicily during the regency of King William II (1166) and was, by 1174, chancellor of Richard, archbishop of Canterbury (d. 1184).

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ture is termed signum, a sign indicating God indirectly by its beauty, its life, its structure, its function, but which has neither direct resemblance nor consubstantiality with the divine.68 By these analogies, Alan elucidates for us the semiotics of seal operation.Whereas the signum points to, but lacks resemblance with its referent, the sigillum incorporates, configures, and actualizes its referent. The topos of imprint emerged primarily as prescholastics refined their understanding of the creation of man in God’s image, in the confused light of Paul’s contention that man is the image of God (1 Cor. 11:7), and of the general patristic doctrine that Christ is the image of God—and the instrument of man’s reformation. In other words, schoolmen considered the topos of the imprint particularly helpful for clarifying the issues of creation, incarnation, and the potential for godliness within the individual human soul.69 The following comparison of the interpretive powers of the imprint to those of the mirror reveals that, by means of the seal metaphor, it was possible to articulate an integrated ontology and theory of image around the

68

“Aliud est enim signaculum Dei, aliud sigillum, aliud ymago, aliud signum. Sigillum Dei Patris est Filius quasi in omnibus signans ilium . . . . Angelus vero est Dei sig-naculum, quasi in aliquibus signans ilium, quia in pluribus similis est Deo angelus etsi non in omnibus. Unde et de Lucifero dicitur secundum statum quem habuit ante casum: Tu signaculum similitudinis Dei. Sed Filius est sigillum Patris secundum unitatem essentie, angelus vero signaculum imitationis ratione. Homo vero dicitur ymago Dei quasi imitago, qui non ita similis est expresse Deo sicut angelus. Quelibet vero creatura dicitur signum Dei, qui sui essentia, sui ordinatione, sui pulcritudine predicat Deum,” Alan of Lille,” In die s. Michaelis”, in Alain de Lille, Textes inédits, p. 250; see also PL CCX, col. 247A–B, where a similar text appears in the Liber Sententiarum attributed to Alain of Lille: Palémon Glorieux, “Le prétendu Liber Sententiarum et dictorum memorabilium d’Alain de Lille,” Recherches de Théologie Ancienne et Médiévale 20 (1953), pp. 229–264. Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 162–163, and vol. 2, pp. 129–133. 69 The emphasis on reason as God’s imprint sometimes extends to the organ of love: it is thus the human heart that God is said to have formed with his seal so that his image is expressed there trait pour trait, in the words of Baldwin of Ford, (also known as Baldwin of Canterbury), Tractatus diversi, Tractatus X: PL CCIV 204, cols. 511B, 516A–B, and Baudouin de Ford, Traités, ed. Robert Thomas (Chimay, 1973–1975): Pone Me ut signaculum super cor tuum: “Amans nos Deus, et amari desiderans, signaculum formavit, habens imaginem amoris insculptam, quo cor nostrum pressius signavit, ut coimaginatum similitudinem imaginis in se exciperet, et configuraliter exprimeret . . . . Aufer a me, Domine, cor lapideum, aufer cor coagulatum, aufer cor incircumcisum; da mihi cor novum, cor carneum, cor mundum! Tu cordis mundator, et mundi cordis amator, posside cor meum et inhabita, continens et implens, superior summo meo et interior intimo meo! Tu forma pulchritudinis et signaculum sanctitatis, signa cor meum in imagine tua.” English translation available in Baldwin of Ford, Spiritual Tractates, trans. D.N. Bell (Kalamazoo, 1986).

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concepts of presence, permanence, creativity, origin, resemblance, and immanence. The imprinted image posited a mark present within the very fabric of the inner man. Such image is, however deformed, permanent. The mirror image, on the other hand, lasts only so long as it is confronted with or capable of reflecting a primary image. Whereas the mirror is passive and receptive, the imprint is dynamic, striving for resemblance with the model from which it derives. For, unlike the displacement of origin, which characterizes the mirror reflection, the imprint forever and doubly retains the marks of its derivation. As a trace, it presents the phenomenological effects of its cause; as an image, it resembles its cause. From the imprint, an origin can be traced. The imprint, therefore, verified the creation of man in the image of God, which may account for the extensive use of the term impressio to describe the filiation, kinship, and affinity, between God and creatures marked by His imprint. Whereas the mirror had evoked imitation, displacement, and discontinuity, the imprint implied affinity and participation. Impressio thus came to project the notion of image as personal, as a presence which linked cognition of the self and recognition of God within oneself. It was the inner nature of man, that fabric imprinted by God, which enabled him to comprehend his “being-image.” During the twelfth century, discussion of the Delphic precept, “Know Thyself (Gnôthi seauton)” went hand in hand with the doctrine of “Man as Image.”70 The imprint could not only articulate that filiation and achieve that formal resemblance (despite a difference in substance) between image and archetype which was necessary for man to be able to evolve a knowledge of God, but it could also imply that direct contact which rendered man’s soul God-like as it took on the sculptural form of the divine seal. The imprint demonstrates that the resemblance of an image to its model results from a comprehensive process involving both form and matter. The nature of imprinting makes manifest how the very receptacle of the form can be made to participate in the mimetic economy of the image. As the following text from the school of Laon put it: “one must know that the imprinted image and the matter receiving the imprint are both called image.”71 In extending 70

Courcelles, Connais-toi toi-mème, vol. 3, p. 721; Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, pp. 368–371. 71 Deus Summe, Munich, Staatsbibliothek, Ms. Clm. 22307, fols. 90vo–91ro: “unde quoniam ratio hominis justi lumine divino, justitia Dei, aliisque virtutibus informata,

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the sphere of imago from the field of vision to the material and tactile dimension of imprinting, prescholastics rooted likeness in empirical experience. (Recall that Augustine had left the notion of likeness essentially unexplained by subsuming it within the Neoplatonic principle of participation.) In the mirror metaphor, the image, and thus the soul, had the faculty of sight; in the seal metaphor, the image, and thus the soul, had the faculty of touch. The mirror metaphor de-substantialized the image, and suggested its potential transformation into pure sight, an un-mediated contemplation—as such, the mirror remained a fundamental topos of mystic spirituality.72 The metaphor of the seal materialized the image homo propter talem rationem imago Dei est. Sciendum est enim quoniam imago impressa in re aliqua et ipsa res in qua imprimatur imago appellatur” (text cited in Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 2, p. 140). This sentence, “sciendum est enim . . . etc.” (thereafter “the formula”), is also found in two twelfth-century treatises, the Tractatus theologicus (PL CLXXI, col. 1118C–D) and the Summa sententiarum (PL CLXXVI, col. 91C–D), spuriously ascribed respectively to Hildebert of Lavardin and Hugh of St.-Victor. The list of texts unquestionably authored by Hildebert has been established by Peter von Moos, Hildebert von Lavardin, 1056–1133: Humanitas an der Schwelle des höfischen Zeitalters (Stuttgart, 1965), pp. 359–377. Numerous discussions have inclined toward denying the attribution of the Summa to Hugh; see Roger Baron, Science et sagesse chez Hugues de Saint-Victor (Paris, 1957), pp. 238–242. In both treatises, the formula appears in a chapter devoted to the Creation of man (“De creatione hominis”). The paragraphs containing the formula are identical but for a few stylistic variations. They begin with the statement that man was made in the image of the whole Trinity, continue with the formula, and conclude in the following fashion (the text is from the Tractatus): “Unde et ipsa ratio imago dicitur, quia tanquam sigillum impressa est animae, et homo imago Dei dicitur. Augustinus in libro De civitate Dei (lib. XI, c. 26, 28): Aliud est Trinitas res ipsa, aliud imago Trinitatis in re aliqua. Propter quam imaginem, similiter et illud in qua ipsa impressa est, imago dicitur. Sic imago dicitur simul et tabula, et quod in ea pictum est, non propter tabulam ipsam, sed propter picturam quae in ea est. Ad similitudinem Dei factus est homo, quia innocens et sine vitio factus est.” According to the three twelfth-century texts, imago involved a process of image production, the imprint, which fused image and medium. Thus, body and form, type and model were dialectically conjugated. The Augustinian origin of the formula is worth noting. Augustine, however, did not expand upon the implications of the imago impressa, using the simile of the painting and its connotations of surface tracing, whereas his twelfth-century commentators, in deploying the seal metaphor, remained firmly within the semantic field of the imprint and its connotations of in-depth marking. In Augustine’s simile the medium, though termed imago, is distinct from the image. With the seal metaphor, the image has penetrated the medium. 72 Bradley, “The speculum image in Medieval Mystical Writers”; Hamburger, “Speculations on Speculation.” The imprinted image, however, was not absent from late medieval mystical experience, particularly among female mystics; see Katharine Park, “Impressed Images: Reproducing Wonders,” Picturing Science, Producing Art, ed. Caroline A. Jones and Peter Galison (New York, London, 1998), pp. 254–271; Caroline Walker Bynum, Holy Feast and Holy Fast. The Religious Significance of Food

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and posited an ontological continuum between being and Being, thus justifying an experimental knowledge of God by man who, through his very grasp of his “being-image,” grasps the essence of his relationship to the Archetype. In manipulating the image-as-imprint to convey God’s creation of man in His image and likeness, prescholastics ultimately came to conceive that the motifs of divine presence impressed within the human fabric were in fact constitutive of that very fabric. They were no longer just comparing the resemblance between two distinct entities, the immortal human soul and the eternal God. Through the metaphor of imprinting, this resemblance was reified, becoming substantial. In the words of Peter Lombard or Hugh of St Victor, for instance, the soul was no longer simply a semblance; it had become actual, the immortal nature of man.73 Thomas of Cîteaux (or of Perseigne, ca. 1189) went even further when he envisioned a triple image of Christ in man, wherein the flesh of Christ transfers to the flesh of man.74 Thus, in embracing the imprint as metaphor, the to Medieval Women (Berkeley, 1987), p. 261. Jeffrey Hamburger analyzed the role played by seal and mirror metaphors in connoting the nature of the resemblance informing late medieval representations of John the Evangelist as a Christomorph, St. John the Divine. The Deified Evangelist in Medieval Art and Theology (Berkeley, 2002), pp. 136–141, 181–183 (on Gertrude of Hefta and the role of the imprinted image in her visions). 73 Javelet, Image et ressemblance, vol. 1, p. 220; vol. 2, p. 191 at note 437. Peter Lombard, Sententiarum Libri Quatuor, Lib. II, Dist. xvi, cap. 5–6, commenting upon Augustine’s ‘anima facta est similis Deo, quia immortalem et indissolubilem fecit eam Deus,’ specified: “Imago ergo pertinet ad formam, similitudo ad naturam. Factus est igitur homo secundum animam ad imaginem et similitudinem, non Patris vel Filii vel Spiritus sancti, sed totius Trinitatis. Quod imago Dei dicitur et imago ipsa et illud in quo est.—Augustinus in libro XV de Trinitate. Ita et secundum animam dicitur homo esse imago Dei, quia imago Dei in eo est [my emphasis]; “sicut imago dicitur et tabula et pictura quae in ea est. Sed propter picturam quae in ea est, simul et tabula imago appellatur; ita propter imaginem Trinitatis, etiam illud in quo est haec imago nomine imaginis vocatur.”: Sententiae in IV Libris distinctae, ed. Ignatius Brady, 2 vols. (Grottaferrata, 1971–1981), vol. 1, p. (PL CXCII, col. 685); English translation available in Sentences, 4 vols. trans. Giulio Silano (Toronto, 2007–2010), vol. 1, pp. 408–409. Hugh of St Victor: “Factus est homo ad imaginem et similitudinem Dei, quia in anima (quae potior pars est hominis, vel potius ipse homo erat) fuit imago et similitudo Dei . . . Imago pertinet at figuram, similitudo ad naturam. Haec autem in anima sola facta sunt, quia corporea natura similitudinem capere non potuit Divinitatis . . ., De sacramentis christiane fidei, PL CLXXVI, cols. 264C–D. 74 “Imaginem regis sigillamus, id est Christi, cum eum in corde imaginamur ut dicamus: ‘signatum est super nos lumen vultus tui, Domine’ (Ps., iv, 6). Triplex est imago Christi: prima est carnis corruptibilis, secunda glorificatae humanitatis, tertia divinitatis. Primam debemus in corde sigillare ut ei compatiamur; secundam ut ad similitudinem ejus suspiremus; tertiam ut eam in ejus regno videamus,” Cantica Canticorum, PL CCVI, col. 546C; Thomas returned to a similar imagery later in his

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prescholastics settled on an essentialist concept of image according to which the image’s intrinsic structure partook of its model’s nature from which and by means of which it incorporated the resemblance necessary to be that model’s image. This theory, with its emphasis on immanence, found very explicit support and application in the contemporary defenses of real presence within the doctrine of the eucharist,75 and in such other phenomena as bleeding hosts,76 stigmata,77 and achiropoietic and miraculous images.78 The new perspective on images was also contemporary with the rapidly expanding practice of documentary sealing, effected by imprinted images which now entered the society at large, becoming signsin-action. I have argued in chapter 6 that the French practice of sealing documents spread to non-royal elites from prescholastic milieus. Here schoolmen, who were also chancellors in charge of the writing bureaus, launched this experiment in documentary signing as part of the new immanent semiotics they were contemporaneously elaborating in their theological and anthropological discussions. This literate, indeed scholarly, context for the origin of the sealed charter suggests a more complex theory of the relations between image and experience than the axis of literacy-illiteracy. When the seals of magnates and high-ranking ecclesiastics first made their appearance on charters, they became part of the apparatus which permitted charters’ effectiveness to derive from and to parallel ambient oral modes. Seals did not immediately displace the pre-existing armamentarium of protective formulae,

commentaries of the Cantica Canticorum when he expounded the passage ‘Pone me ut signaculum super cor tuum, ut signaculum super brachium tuum’ (Cant. viii, 6), PL CCVI, cols. 809A–812 B.D.N. Bell, “The Commentary on the Song of Songs of Thomas the Cistercian and His Conception of the Image of God,” Cîteaux. Commentarii Cisterciences 28 (1977), pp. 5–25. 75 See notes 22 and 34 above. 76 Jean-Marie Sansterre, “L’image blessée, l’image souffrante : quelques récits de miracles entre Orient et Occident (VIe–XIIe siècle),” in Les images dans la société médiévale, ed. J.-M. Sansterre and J.-Cl. Schmitt (Brussel, Rome, 1999), pp. 113–130; Miri Rubin, Corpus Christi. The Eucharist in Late Medieval Culture (Cambridge, 1991), p. 126–127; M. Rubin, “Desecration of the Host: The Birth of an Accusation,” in Christianity and Judaism, ed. D. Wood (Oxford, 1992), pp. 169–185. 77 Constable, Three Studies, pp. 202, 214–215. 78 I argue for a relationship between the twelfth-century’s theory of the imprint and the concommitant development in the west of the cult of Veronica’s Sudarium in Bedos-Rezak, “Semiotic Anthropology. The Twelfth-Century Experiment,” European Transformations 950–1200, ed. Thomas F.X. Noble and John Van Engen (Notre Dame, Forthcoming).

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dedicating gestures, and validating devices that were either inscribed upon charters—maledictions, threats of anathema and excommunication, witness-lists, the laudatio parentum, crosses, and monograms(Fig. 16), or involved their manipulation—public reading, placement upon altars.79 A review of the documentary output from the episcopal chancery at Laon during the tenure of Anselm (d. 1117, chancellor from 1095) and his brother and successor Ralph (d. ca. 1134–1136), both of whom were also schoolmen and heads of the famous episcopal school of Laon, reveals a suggestive pattern.80 Actual traces of an episcopal seal are first attested in 1082,81 but sealing remained irregular well into the two first decades of the twelfth century, that is, some charters simply did not receive a seal,82 while on others a seal was affixed but with no textual clause announcing its attachment.83 When the seal was announced, the clause would read: “hoc scriptum fieri volumus [this is in the voice of the bishop in whose name the charter is issued] nostroque et nostrorum assensu corroboratum et sigillo assignatum reddidimus.”84 During Master Anselm’s headship of the chancery, and at the very time that the school of Laon was flourishing under his teaching,85 an impor79

See chapters 1, 2, 6 above. A systematic analysis of the episcopal acta of Laon is made possible by the excellent diplomatic edition of Annie Dufour-Malbezin, Actes des évêques de Laon antérieurs à 1151 (Paris, 2001). 81 Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, pp. 36, 47 and no. 35 pp. 110–12. 82 For instance, Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, no. 36 (1084, text known from an eighteenthcentury copy), no. 43 (1095, original charter), no. 44 and 45 (1096, texts known from eighteenth-century copies probably made from the original); no. 82 (1118, text known from an eighteenth-century copy perhaps made from the original); no. 83 (1118, text known from an eighteenth-century copy); no. 87 (1120, text known by a copy made in 1665); no. 94 (1121, original charter); nos. 96–97 (1122, texts known from thirteenthcentury copies). 83 For instance, Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, no. 38 (1087, original charter with traces of a now missing seal), no. 53 (1100, original charter, the seal is missing), no. 54 (1103, original charter with its seal intact); no. 78 (1116, original charter, seal missing); no. 99 (1122, original charter, the seal is missing). 84 For instance, Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, no. 40 (1091): original charter, the seal is missing. 85 On Anselm and the school: Smalley, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, pp. 49–51, 59–69, 73–74, 76–77, 201–202; Valérie Flint, “The ‘School of Laon:’ A Reconsideration,” Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale, 43 (1976), pp. 89–110, reprinted in her Ideas in the Medieval West. Texts and their Contexts (London, 1988), no. I, pp. 89–110; Marcia Colish, “Another Look at the School of Laon,” Archives d’histoire doctrinale et littéraire du Moyen Age, 53 (1986), pp. 7–22. For the complexity surrounding Anselm’s authorship of texts, see Gui Lobrichon, “Anselme de Laon,” Dictionnaire des lettres françaises. Le Moyen Age (Paris, 1992), pp. 73–74. 80

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tant innovation entered diplomatic discourse. From 1103 onward, the formula announcing that a seal was affixed referred to the “imprint of our [the bishop’s] image:” “Ut autem hec constituo firma et illibata in perpetuum permaneat, hoc privilegio, nostra imagine munito et testium qui affuerunt subscriptione corroborato, interposito anathemate, firmare precepimus,”86 (Fig. 22), or “et ne aliquis eam [donationem] deinceps infringere audeat, nos ut scripto, nostre imaginis impressione munito, cum anathematis interpositione confirmaremus, exoravit.”87 As these final clauses make clear,88 the seal’s performance and significance hinged on its being an imprinted image of the charter’s author, in whose name the charter would typically open in the following fashion: “In nomine sancte et individuae Trinitatis. Ego Ingelrannus, gratia Dei Laudunensium episcopus.”89 A consideration of the particulars of diplomatic discourse within several hundred charters given in Northern France between 1050 and 1250 corroborates the Laon pattern.90 After some flux during the early eleventh century, the formulae became virtually standardized in stating that the author of the charter had confirmed it with the impression of his seal: “que concessio, ut rata et inviolabilis in futuro permaneat, 86

Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, no. 55 (1103, original charter, seal missing). Dufour-Malbezin, Actes, no. 74 (1116, original charter, seal missing). See also no. 98 (1122; text known from a thirteenth-century copy); no. 66 (1114, text known from a eighteenth-century copy); no. 67 (1114, text known by a seventheeth-century copy); no. 72 (1115, text known from a late twelfth-century copy). See also no. 75–76 (1116, original charters, seal missing), no. 77 (1116, text known by a thirteenth-century copy), no. 89 (1120, text known from an eighteenth-century copy), no. 90–91 (1121, texts known from twelfth-century copies), no. 92 (1121, sealed original charter), no. 95 (1121, text known from a thirteenth-century copy); no. 100 (1123, sealed original charter); no. 161 (1134, original charter, seal missing). Concluding these documents is the chancellor’s subscription: “Ego Ansellus [or, ego, Radulphus], cancellarius Sancte marie, relegi [or, scripsi, or scripsi et subscripsi].” 88 For reference to other northern French writing bureaus associated with schools which produced a diplomatic discourse referring to sealing as the imprint of the sealer’s image, see Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique,” pp. 42–43 and chapter 6 above at note 78. 89 See above, documents listed at notes 86–87. See also the invocation and salutation charters given in the name of Barthélémy of Joux, bishop of Laon between 1113–1151, who had been recommended to this position by Master Anselm: “In nomine sancte et individuae Trinitatis. Ego Bartholomeus, Dei gratia Laudunensium presul.” 90 Sources used for this survey include: Cartulaire de l’abbaye de Saint-Corneille de Compiègne. Tome premier, ed. Chanoine Morel (Montdidier, 1904); Cartulaire de l’hôpital Saint-Jean de Bruxelles, ed. Paul Bonenfant (Bruxelles, 1953); Cartulaire des Vaux-de-Cernay. Tome premier 1118–1250, ed. Lucien Merlet and Auguste Moutié (Paris, 1838); Recueil des chartes et documents de Saint-Martin des Champs. Tome II, ed. Joseph Depoin (Paris, 1913). 87

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sigilli mei impressione corrobari volui.”91 By the early thirteenth century, however, imprinting (impressione) began to be supplemented by specific reference to the gesture of appending, as stated typically in a validating clause: “quod ut ratum sit firmiterque in posterum teneatur, ipsam compositionem litteris tradi fecimus et sigillorum nostrorum appensione muniri.”92 By the mid-thirteenth century, the clause of validation tended to include a newer generic formula which asserted that the seal was appended as an attestation: “In cujus rei testimonium, . . . sigillum meum feci apponi.”93 The progression of these trends,—the formulas overlap and the examples cited do not exhaust the full lexicon of terms used in validating clauses—, cannot be explained simply as reflecting contemporary sealing techniques. True, the earliest western seals were applied directly to their documents and the wax was stamped after it had already been laid on the parchment. Applied seals, however, gave way to pendant seals from the mid-eleventh century onward. In such regions as Flanders, Brabant, Hainaut, the pendant seal had totally replaced the applied seal by 1110.94 Of course, even after the introduction of pendant seals, imprinting, that is, the impression of a matrix upon the soft wax or metal, persisted. Nor had appending totally displaced imprinting as the specific act which defined and completed the process of sealing, since the final stamping of the wax seal necessarily occurred only after its attachments had been inserted into the document itself.

91

“In order that this concession remain firm and intact in the future, I wished it to be strengthened with the impression of my seal,” Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint Corneille, no. 53, p. 105 (vers 1140). Occurrences of final clauses announcing the impression of the seal are numerous. Some variants include: Cartulaire des Vaux-de-Cernay, no. 42, p. 60 (1173–1190): ‘et sigilli nostri sub impressione digne duximus confirmari.’ In his work on “The chancery of Henry the Liberal, count of Champagne (1152–1181),” http://scrineum.unipv.it/wight/cell10.htm, Steven M. Wight notes that “The usual corroboration formula was ‘Et ut hoc ratum et inconcussum permaneat, sigilli mei impressione confirmari precepi,’ or some variant thereon, such as ‘Et ut hoc memoriter et firmius teneatur, scripto commendavi et sigilli mei impressione roboravi.’ Wight based his study on John Benton’s manuscript edtion of Count Henry’s acta, which has since then appeared as: John Benton and Michel Bur, eds., Recueil des actes de Henri le Libéral, comte de Champagne (1152–1181). Tome I (Paris, 2009). 92 “In order that this reconciliation remain firm and be strongly upheld in the future, we had it put in writing and fortified by the appending of our seals,” Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 257, p. 377 (1203). 93 “In testimony of which, I had my seal apposed,” Cartulaire de l’hôpital Saint-Jean, no. 68, p. 99 (1247). 94 René Laurent, Les sceaux des princes territoriaux belges, du Xe siècle à 1482, 2 vols. in 3 (Brussels, 1993), I/1, p. 70.

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An entire century elapsed between the time pendant seals first appeared until textual clauses declaring their pendency became standard within the document itself. Thus, during the entire initial century of their diffusion, seals were experienced as, and acted as, impressions. Some formulae indicate that the charter itself had been impressed (impregnated) with the seal, mea carta sigillo impressa confirmavi.95 In other clauses, the term impressio is qualified or complemented by a range of other terms. Thus, we often read that authors have confirmed their charters with the authority and impression of their seals, litteras memoriales . . . auctoritate et sigilli nostri impressione corroboravimus,96 or that their charter has been confirmed with an authentic impression of their seal: impressione autentica nostri sigilli corroboravi curavimus.97 Yet other validating clauses combine impressio with the Latin word character as in sigilli nostri impresso caractere fecimus confirmari (we have confirmed with the impressed character of our seal).98 Finally, and significantly, impressio is often associated with the term imago: Et ne aliquis contra hanc donationem

95

Historia et Cartularium monasterii sancti Petri Gloucestriae, ed. William H. Hart (London, 1865), no. DVIII, p. 51 (1149–1183), donation by Robert to the church of St Gundleus; see also no. DVI, p. 50 (1072–1104), donation by Morgan to the churches of St Gundleus and St Peter of Gloucester: ‘donationem patris mei et meam carta mea et sigillo meo impressa confirmavi.’ For later examples of the use of this specific formula, see Mary Bateson, “The Creation of Boroughs,” English Historical Review, 17 (1902), pp. 284–296, at p. 293: creation, in ca. 1246–1271, of the borough of Warton (in presenti carta mea sigillo meo impressa). 96 Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 35, p. 72 (1114). 97 Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 34, p. 71 (1114). 98 Cartulaire des Vaux-de-Cernay, no. 102, pp. 121–22 (1194); no. 123, p. 205 (1200). See other examples in Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 54 p. 106 (ca. 1140); no. 155, p. 250 (1183); no. 267, p. 387 (1205), and in Cartulaire de l’hôpital Saint-Jean, no. 29, p. 51 (1226). I analyse the association of the Latin terms impressio and character in Bedos-Rezak, “In Search of a Semiotic Paradigm. The Matter of Sealing in Medieval Thought and Praxis (1050–1400),” in Good Impressions. Image and Authority in Medieval Seals, ed. John Cherry and James Robinson (London, 2008; British Museum, Occasional Paper series), pp. 1–7, at pp. 2, and in Bedos-Rezak, “‘Semiotic Anthropology.’ The Twelfth Century Experiment.” On the changing significance of the term and concept of ‘character’ from the early Middle Ages onward, see Nikolaus M. Häring, “St. Augustine’s Use of the Word Character,” Medieval Studies 14 (1952), pp. 79–97; Häring, “Character, Signum und Signaculum. Die Entwicklung bis nach der karolingischen Renaissance,” Scholastik 30 (1955), pp. 481-512; Häring, “Character, Signum und Signaculum. Der Weg von Petrus Damiani bis zur eigentlichen Aufnahme in die Sakramentenlehre im 12. Jahrhundert,” Scholastik 31 (1956), pp. 41-69; Häring, “Character, Signum und Signaculum. Die Einführung in die Sakramententheologie des 12. Jahrhunderts,” Scholastik 31 (1956), pp. 182-212.

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venire presumat, imaginis nostre impressione eam corroborari precepi,— so that no one will presume to challenge this donation, I ordered it to be confirmed with the imprint of my image.99 This lexicon, imago, character, and auctoritas began to disappear from the closing formulae after 1200, as did the term impressio itself. Such twelfth-century insistence on the seal as imprint suggests the resonance of sealing with incarnational thinking and its related immanent semiotics. The seal as imprint highlights its indexical nature as the trace of an actual contact, not only between the matrix and the wax, but also between the seal and its user. The wax applied to the seal user’s matrix embodied his person as the true originator of the act in question—his presence often rendered even more tangible by the inclusion of bodily marks in the seal, such as finger prints, bite marks, or actual hairs plucked from his beard.100 The early fifteenth-century chronicle of the monastery of St Augustine of Canterbury relates that, after the Norman invasion of England, kings and magnates added to their charters thin sheets of wax onto which they imprinted the sign of the cross, leaving as signs for posterity bits of hair and beard also inserted into the wax. The chronicler, Thomas of Elmham (d. 1420), asserts that such personalized items could then be found in the many monasteries that had been created after the Conquest, and provides two specific examples. The first reference is to the Cluniac priory of Saint-Pancras of Lewes (Sussex), in which a charter given by William, first count of Warenne (d. 1088), still contained, at the time Thomas 99 Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 180, p. 280 (ca. 1189). Recueil des chartes et documents de Saint-Martin des Champs. Tome II, no. 315, pp. 206–7 (1148–1149): ‘imaginis nostre impressione et probabilium personarum intitulatione eam [seriem] corroborari fecimus.’ See other examples in Benton and Bur, Recueil des actes d’Henri le Libéral , t. I, no. 12, p. 16 (bef. 1152: ‘impressione mee ymaginis signare curavi;’ no. 81, p. 113 (1156–1157: ‘sigilli mei subtus inscripta ymagine confirmo); no. 197, p. 259 (original charter of 1163–1164), with this particular turn of phrase: “Ne vero pretaxata temporalis valeat oblitterare prolixitas aut odibilis infirmare presumat iniquitas, apicibus annotare et sigilli mei impressione subimaginare curavi.” 100 See above, chapter 6, note 78, for a discussion of the insertion of bodily parts in seals. Jules Viard, “Singularité sigillographique,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 68 (1907), p. 428: edition of a charter (ca. 1150) in which a Norman knight states he pressed his teeth into the wax in lieu of a seal: Et ad confirmandum predictam donationem, hanc ceram pro sigillo dentibus ita impressi; René Gandilhon, “La dactyloscopie et les sceaux,” Mémoires de la Société historique, littéraire, et scientifique du Cher 39 (1931–1932), pp. 98–100; Oskar Mitis, “Daktyloskopie und Siegelkunde,” Mikroskopie 4 (1949), pp. 361–367; Michel Pastoureau, “Le doigt dans la cire. Cent mille empreintes digitales médiévales,” in La pelle umana / The Human Skin, Micrologus 13 (20005), pp. 331–344.

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was writing, some of the count’s hair. The second example refers to a charter of the Cluniac house of Castle Acre (Norfolk), in which the count of Lincoln concluded in the following fashion: ‘In hujus rei evidentiam sigillum dentibus meis impressi, teste Muriele uxore mea.’ Once again, Thomas noted that the traces of teeth, imprinted as a seal, could still be seen in the wax.101 Thus, the seal impression, whether of a matrix and, or, made by parts of the body, was initially appreciated as a relic of the sealer’s physical contact and participation. The diplomatic trope of the imprint was, therefore, concerned with origin and presence. That the authorship and authority of the seal depended on the person and the personal participation of its owner is well expressed by the textual combination of impressio and auctoritas, where auctoritas re-enforces the emphasis on personal origin. In fact, early diplomatic discourse, in using the terms authentic (authentica) and authoritative (auctoritate) interchangeably to characterize the seal impression, testifies to the contemporary semantic synergy between an actor and an author, both of which terms referred to the person who originated and caused an act to be.102 Remarkably, the document in which I found mention of an authentic impression date from 1114,

101 Thomas Elmham, Historia monasterii S. Augustini Cantuariensis, ed. Charles Hardwick (London, 1858), pp. 118–19: ‘Post adventum vero Normannorum in Angliam, tam reges, quam alii domini et magnates, laminas cereas membranis apponebant cartarum, crucis signum in laminis cereis imprimentes, de capillis capitum vel barbarum in eadem cera aliquam portionem pro signo posteris relinquentes, ista patent in multis monasteriis post Conquestum regni istius fundatis; ut est in monasterio sancti Pancratii de Lewes de carta Willielmi primi comitis Warenniae, in qua crines capitis usque in prasens ejusdem comitis permanent. Similiter in monasterio de Castelacre, quo est in ejusdem fundationis, in dioecesi Norwicensi, comes Lincolniensis, qui pluribus possessionibus eandem ecclesiam dotavit, haec in fine intulit cartae suae: “In hujus,” inquit, “rei evidentiam sigillum dentibus meis impressi, teste Muriele uxore mea;” ubi usque in praesens in eadem cera apparent dentium vestigia pro sigillo. His etiam similia in pluribus aliis monasteriis sunt reperta.’ The 1444-cartulary of the Cluniac Priory of St. Pancras of Lewes has been partially translated by Louis F. Salzman, The Chartulary of the Priory of St. Pancras of Lewes, 2 vols. (Sussex Record Society 38, 1932). It has not been possible to identify the charter described by Thomas in this work. 102 Marie-Dominique Chenu, “Auctor, Actor, Autor,” Bulletin du Cange 3 (1927), pp. 81–86; M.-D. Chenu, “Authentica et magistralia,” Divus Thomas 28 (1925), pp. 257– 285; Bernard Guenée, “Authentique et approuvé. Recherches sur les principes de la critique historique au Moyen Age,” in La lexicographie du latin médiéval et ses rapports avec les recherches actuelles sur la civilisation du Moyen Age: Colloques internationaux du C.N.R.S., 589 (Paris, 1981), pp. 215–229; reprinted in Politique et histoire au Moyen Age (Paris, 1981), pp. 265–278; Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique,” p. 49. See chapter 1 above.

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well before canon law had introduced the complicated concept of the sigillum authenticum, the authentic seal.103 Replica The imprinted image, in twelfth-century theology as in documentary practice, achieved presence rather than representation through a signifying mode which was conceived to actualize in matter the referent’s characteristics. It is my contention that the very circulation of seal impressions within society introduced a discursive and representational template that came to part ways with the prescholastic anthropology and theory of image that had facilitatedthe diffusion of seals in the first place. The point here is not to claim that seals themselves were the only agents effecting change but rather to focus on those aspects of seals and sealing practices that might have had a role in modifying documentary authentication, strategies of representations, and the perception of self. Seal impressions were products of mechanical reproductive techniques which assured the multiplication of identical images. Such techniques tended to deflect attention from human agency and toward the mechanistic aspect of seal origin. The identicality of imprints came to guarantee both a same origin (the sealer) and a unique original (the seal matrix). It was thus as true replicas one of another that seal impressions now expressed (instantiated), though no longer embodied (substantiated), that presence which assured the authority these impressions conveyed. That contact between the sealing person’s body and the seal, which had originally been so important a factor in establishing the seal’s authority, thus came to be displaced by the relationship between image and image. Some Norman lords, for instance, deposited multiple impressions of their seals in different abbeys by which to guarantee, through publicity and comparison, any charters they might later seal.104

103 Cartulaire de l’abbaye Saint-Corneille, no. 34, p. 71 (1114). On the sigillum authenticum, see chapter 3 above at note 7 and note 106 below. 104 Béatrice Poulle, “Renouvellement et garantie des sceaux privés au XIIIe siècle,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des Chartes 146 (1988), pp. 369–380; B. Bedos-Rezak, “Du sujet à l’objet. La formulation identitaire et ses enjeux culturels,” Gesellschaft und individuelle Kommunikation in der Vormoderne. Persönliche Identität und Identifikation vor

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The sameness of the seal impressions, to be sure, did not fully displace the necessary existence of an original, but the adequacy of such impressions was not in practice tested against an original; to the contrary. Since, as a result of the mechanical reproductive technique, all impressions of a given matrix were assumed to be identical copies, they all ended up functioning as originals generating their own accuracy, truth, and validity. In practice, replicated seal impressions were understood and treated both as copies and originals. This perception, and the very centrality and potency of sealed documents, intensified medieval confusion and concern about the nature of forgery. For forgery is but an extreme form of replication, and replicability, by the thirteenth century, had become the main criterion used to certify the authenticity of seal impressions. Replication, by rendering moot the distinction between original and duplicate, undermined those differences upon which law bearing on originals and fakes might be based. Replication, replicability, in this sense, made it very difficult, if not impossible, to prove the real, which led twelfth- and thirteenth-century canon lawyers into many contradictory pronouncements on seal genuineness.105 Canon and civil lawyers translated the question of authenticity into a concern for authority. Focusing on the sigillum rather than the imago, they struggled (in vain) to achieve either ways to determine the seal’s genuineness or definitions that would establish its capacity to confer full validity upon documents to the signing of which there had been no witnesses. In this latter context, jurists asserted, quite vaguely and redundantly, that the authority of a seal depended upon custom and upon the seal itself being well known.106 By the mid-thirteenth-century, only the seals of high-ranking personae were considered capable of der Moderne/Identité personnelle et identification avant le XIXe siècle, ed. Peter von Moos, Norm und Struktur, Bd. 23 (Cologne, 2004), pp. 63–82. 105 Mariano Welber, Sigillografia. Il sigillo nella diplomatica, nel diritto, nella storia, nell’arte. Vol. 3: I sigilli nella storia del diritto medievale italiano (Milano, 1984); the chapter on canon law and seal forgery (153–180) concerns the whole of Christendom. Auguste Dumas, “Etude sur le classement de la forme des actes,” Le Moyen Age, 43 (1933), pp. 146–166; Guenée, “Authentique et approuvé,” pp. 215–229; B. BedosRezak, “The Efficacy of Signs and the Matter of Authenticity in Canon Law,” Zwischen Pragmatik und Performanz. Dimensionen mittelalter Schriftkultur, ed. Thomas Scharff, Frühmittelalterlichen Studien (Münster U. Press, Forthcoming); see chapter 1 above, at note 48. 106 The expression “sigillo autentico, bene cognito et famoso” is from Konrad of Mure (d. 1275), Summa de arte prosandi, in Briefsteller und Formelbücher des eilften bis viersehnten Jahrhunderts, ed Ludwig Rockinger (Munich, 1863; rprt. New York: Burt Franklin, 1961), p. 459. See a more recent edition of Konrad’s Summa in Konrad

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confering full authentification. Lesser individuals needed to apply to kings, lords, bishops, and civic officials in order to have their contracts and transactions validated. Within the writing bureaux of such elites, an especially “deputed seal of juridiction” was consequently established with which to seal private deeds under the elite’s authority and executory force.107 Although the personal seals of private individuals are attested throughout late-medieval France, they are few and were typically affixed to ephemeral documents (quittances and the like); the bulk of extant sealed records bear the administrative seals of elite jurisdictions. The iconographic format on these later seals is heraldic or topical (for instance, a building), eschewing anthropomorphism (Fig. 23). At stake in such a sealing practice is the fact that, by the mid-thirteenth century, only seals associated with permanence by virtue of official back-up commanded authority. Seals ceased to signal personal participation and individual adhesion; their agency was no longer conceived as deriving from the incorporation of and ontological resemblance to a particular individual. Tools are not simply instruments of a human competence; they transform that competence.108 Prescholastics had construed and used the imprint as a process of contact which manifested and warranted the authenticity of presence and the legitimacy of resemblance vis-à-vis an originating model. Sealing had always required replication but, in the eleventh- and twelfth-century discourse of schoolmen and charters, this technique had been muted by their focus on impressio. Seals as signs-in-action re-aligned resemblance away from the model toward the imprints that might be issued from a particular mold. This shift suggests a recognition of and an attempt to compensate for the distancing from the origin which occurred in practice, since the moment of contact between die and impression, between seal and owner was, however undoubtedly historical, only transient. That which von Mure, Die Summa de arte prosandi, ed. Walter Kronbichler (Zurich: Fretz and Wasmuth, 1968). Welber, Sigillografia, pp. 205, and 181–226 where is given a lucid analysis of “the theory of the authentic seal” in canon law. See note 105 above. 107 R.-H. Bautier, “L’authentification des actes privés dans la France médiévale. Notariat public et juridiction gracieuse,” Notariado público y documento privado, de los origines al siglo XIV. Actas del VII Congreso internacional de diplomatica, Valencia 1986, (Valencia 1989), vol. 2, pp. 701–772, reprint in, Chartes, sceaux et chancelleries. Etudes de diplomatique et de sigillographie médiévales, 2 vols. (Paris, 1990), vol. 1, pp. 269–340. 108 Régis Debray, Vie et mort de l’image (Paris, 1992), p. 177.

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remained, visible and tangible, was the consistency, the identity between successive imprints produced from a single die. When, by the thirteenth century, seals were functioning as replicated images without a readily referenced original to confer authority and authenticity, they had largely ceased to be an active motif within anthropological theology. This particular harmony between concept and praxis had dissolved, and did not reappear with the entrance of seals into legal discourse. The continuing difficulty legal scholars had in articulating the fundamental values and beliefs which underlay the utility and force of seals cannot today be appreciated without considering the extent to which two distinct concepts of seals—as impressions of presence and as replicated images—blurred the very concepts of authenticity and of authority. This ambivalent status of the seal, as imprint relating to its origin ontologically and as replica blurring origin and originality, may shed light on the specific trajectory of the medieval seal’s history. From an image of hermeneutical power it evolved into a sign able to subvert its own referential modes and the representational system associated with them. The recurrent primacy of human testimonial and a growing reliance upon the signature during the later Middle Ages, both a practice of “presence,” may well be related to that sense of absence brought about by signs of identity become replicas.

PART III

EGO

CHAPTER EIGHT

DIFFORMITAS: INVECTIVE, INDIVIDUALITY, IDENTITY The medieval insult of ugliness (difformitas) played upon and thus in part reveals aspects of the medieval concepts of identity and personhood. Hence, in order to purse my study of these questions, I propose in this chapter to analyze a specific episode of aggressiveness in twelfthcentury France. Medieval invectives could constitute an infraction and thus might be legally punished as threats to the social and eschatological orders, yet they could also be manipulated to serve as tools for the preservation of society and religion.1 Many parameters affected the norms and boundaries of medieval insults including circumstances, purposes, and targets, so that a fixed definition of invective cannot by itself form the basis for an analysis of the phenomenon. The epistemological necessity of having to deploy pre-existing analytical categories in order to grasp their specific historical nature will not, however, detain us here.2 Rather, I will consider how narratives of transgressions crossed social, ethical, and esthetic codes, breaching and mobilizing them in the process of constituting themselves as insults. Such invectives transgressed, paradoxically, even as they followed existing contemporary rhetorical rules for the expression of vituperation. As the Aurea Gemma ca. 1120), one of the earliest ars dictaminis, put it: “If you propose to vituperate someone, you will show or proclaim him lacking in all virtues and abundant in all vices; and you will designate his use of externally located corporal goods [riches, nobility, office, and glory], which are good as well as bad, as immoderate and intemperate and thus you will stain his person by all means. If he is learned, show that he was slothful in study and luxurious in leisure, and try to demonstrate that he was not implacable to enemies and inexorable to

1 Jean-Claude Schmitt, “Les images de l’invective,” in L’invective au Moyen Age, eds. Eric Beaumatin and Michel Garcia (Paris, 1995), pp. 11–20, at p. 12. 2 E. Beaumatin, “La violence verbale. Préalables à une mise en perspective linguistique,” in L’invective au Moyen Âge, pp. 21–36, at pp. 21–24; Claude Gauvard, “Conclusion,” in L’invective au Moyen Âge, pp. 249–258, at p. 249; E. Beaumatin and M. Garcia, “Pour rendre-compte,” in L’invective au Moyen Âge, pp. 259–262.

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friends.”3 Both at the social and rhetorical levels, normative assumptions about order and conventions were building blocks of the discourse of insult, shifting the sense of transgression away from the attackers toward the attacked. The Invectiva of Arnulf of Lisieux The text to be considered here is known variously as the Tractatus or Invectiva in Girardum Engolismensem Episcopum (ca. 1133).4 It is not 3 The aurea gemma was an early twelfth-century (ca. 1120) manual for letter and documentary writing (summae dictandi) composed by a French master in Pavia, Henry Francigenus. The manual included, following Cicero’s classical rhetorics, instructions for the composition of praise and of invective. Given his training in rhetoric and the fact that he wrote the Invectiva in Northern Italy, Arnulf had no doubt encountered the burgeoning literature devoted to the art of letter writing. See Ernst H. Kantorowicz, “Anonymi ‘Aurea Gemma’,” Medievalia et Humanistica, 1 (1943), pp. 41–57; reprinted in E. Kantorowicz, Selected Studies (Locust Valley, N.Y., 1965), pp. 247–263; Alain Boureau, “The Letter-Writing Norm, a Medieval Invention,” in Correspondence: Models of Letter-Writing from the Middle Ages to the Nineteenth Century, eds. Roger Chartier, Alain Boureau, and Cécile Dauphin (Cambridge, 1997), pp. 24–58, at p. 42. On artes dictaminis in general, see Martin Camargo, Ars Dictaminis, Ars dictandi (Brepols, 1991; Typologie des sources du Moyen Age occidental 60). “Aurea Gemma”, ed. and trans. Steven M Wight, in Medieval Diplomatic and the ‘ars dictandi’ (Scrineum, Cantieri, http://dobc.unipv.it/scrineum/wight/index.htm), (Pavia, 1999): 1.73: Si quem vero vituperare proponis, omnibus eum virtutibus vacuum et vitiis omnibus habundantem ostendes vel predicabis; et bonis corporis extrinsecus sitis, que communia sunt tam bonis quam malis, inmmoderate et intemperanter usum designabis et ita personam eius omnibus modis contaminabis. Si litteratus est, desidem in studio fuisse et luxoriosum ostendes in otio, et inimicis placabilem et amicis inexorabilem se exhibuisse demonstrare contendes. 1.74: Quemcumque criminari volueris, considera diligenter, quicquid facere debet ex officio, ut cum eius personam carpere volueris, ab officio eum errare ostendas. Qui enim officium suum deserit, privari debet dignitate, que est comes officii. Verbi gratia: Magistratus est officium intelligere se gerere personam civitatis et ad eius salutem non solum dicta set etiam facta et consilia debere dirigere. Si ergo officium deserit, id est si curam civitatis negligit et salutem, cui debet providere, etiam magistratu ipso debet exui, cuius negligit officium exequi. Idem intelligendum est de ceteris officiis. 1.75: Est enim officium congruus actus uniuscuiusque persone secundum mores et instituta patrie vel civitatis et hec est civilis diffinitio. In morali vero philosophia divisio precedit diffinitionem. Officium aliud perfectum, aliud medium. Perfectum officium est honestum factum, medium officium est, de quo rationabilis causa reddi potest. 1.76: Si quem laudare volueris, dices eum hec duo officia observasse. Si quem vituperare collibuerit, ab utroque aberrasse et in contrarium incidisse insinuabis. 4 I have used here Julius Dietrich, ed., Arnulfi Sagiensis Archidiaconi Postea Episcopi Lexoviensis Invectiva in Girardum Engolismensem Episcopum (thereafter, Invectiva), (Hannover, 1987; Monumenta Germaniae Historica. Libelli de lite, 3), pp. 81–108. In his detailed introduction (Ibid., p. 85), Dietrich gives a listing of earlier editions, warning against Migne who, in Arnulfi Lexoviensis episcopi tractatus de schismate orto post Honorii II papae decessum, PL CCI, cols. 173A–187D, “Gilesianam editionem [Giles, I] . . . neglegenter, ut assolet, descripsit.”

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clear whether these titles were part of the original composition. The text neither entitles itself tractatus, nor contains the term, yet its polemic and aggressive purposes are made clear from the dedicatory letter with which it commences. There, the author clearly announces that he will attack, unfavorably discuss, and refute Girard of Angoulême: “. . . In Girardum Engolismensem . . . invectus, originem nativitatis ejus, conversationis qualitatem, prelationis causam . . . perstrinxi.”5 In fact, the Invectiva rhetorically assaults two individuals, Girard, bishop of Angoulême and papal legate (d. 1136), and Pope Anaclet II (d. 1138). The author of the Invectiva was Arnulf (d. 1181), then archdeacon of Sées and later bishop of Lisieux (from 1141 to 1181). Arnulf was studying Roman law in Italy (almost certainly Bologna) when he wrote this pamphlet, the earliest known of his extant writings which comprise 141 letters of personal correspondence. A letter introduced and directed the Invectiva specifically to Geoffrey de Leves, bishop of Chartres (1116–1149) and papal legate (1132–1143) but all churchmen who opposed Pope Anaclet received the tract favorably, particularly Bernard of Clairvaux who was so impressed with it that he helped its dissemination throughout Europe.6 Yet, while Arnulf’s personal correspondence is extant in nineteen manuscripts of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, his Invectiva, by contrast, is preserved in but a single fifteenth-century manuscript, appearing neither in the collections Arnulf made of his epistolary communications nor in any of the manuscripts collating Arnulf’s correspondence. The pamphlet nevertheless matches the letters in literary merit, displaying Arnulf’s education through an abundance of direct classical quotations and Latin figures of speech.7 The precise pedagogical cursus that allowed Arnulf 5

Invectiva, p. 85. Arnulf’s Invectiva shares many points with the letter Bernard wrote in support of Anaclet’s contender to the papal see, Innocent II to the bishops of Aquitaine (Epistola 126); see below at notes 20 and 21. 7 On Arnulf of Lisieux, see most recently Carolyn Poling Schriber, The Dilemma of Arnulf of Lisieux: New Ideas versus Old Ideals (Bloomington, 1990). The manuscript tradition and editions of the Invectiva are discussed at p. x–xi. Schriber considers that Arnulf omitted the Invectiva in his public works because it had been written prior to his rise to the episcopacy; such an omission would thus reflect Arnulf’s understanding of the office of bishop rather than any embarrassment over his youthful and vitriolic prose. The circumstances surrounding the production of the Invectiva, including Arnulf’s education and intellectual network, and the literary merits of the text are analyzed at p. 2–10. Further details on the Invectiva’s textual tradition are given in Dietrich, Invectiva, pp. 84–85. For additional bibliography concerning the papal schism of 1130–1130, see below at note 11. 6

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to become skilled at rhetoric and one of the earliest practitioners of the ars dictaminis is somewhat unclear, but there is evidence that he studied at Sées, Angoulême, Chartres, Rome or Bologna, and Paris.8 He was in any case well aware of the importance of rhetorical education. In his letter introducing the Invectiva, Arnulf asserts that science rather than strong feeling gives rhetoric its texture. Nevertheless, as he confesses, zeal permeates his work and he seeks credit for good will if expertise should fail to secure him praise.9 Although there is little doubt that Arnulf was well versed in rhetorical etiquette and classical learning,10 the Invectiva also displays an intellectual training associating Arnulf with major trends in early twelfth-century thought. My purpose here, however, is less to detail Arnulf’s schooling than to analyze

8 See notes 18 below. In his letter introducing the Invectiva to Geoffrey, Bishop of Chatres, Arnulf describes himself as Geoffrey’s humble and devoted cleric, thus attesting that he had spent time in Chartres; Invectiva, p. 85: “Venerabili Dei gratia Carnotensi episcopo, Gaufrido, Romane ecclesiae legato, Arnulfus, archidiaconus Sagiensis, clericus ejus humilis and devotus salutem.” A few sentences later, Arnulf explains that he is unable to assist Bishop Geoffrey in conducting ecclesiastical affairs because he is away studying law in Italy, “Sed qui me in Italiam desiderata diu Romanorum legum studia deduxerunt, loci quidem distantia corporale subduxit obsequium, sed spiritualem non suppressit affectum.” Passages from Arnulf’s correspondence indicate familiarity with Parisian schools and personal ties with the abbey of St Victor, where he spent the last years of his life after resigning his episcopal see in ca. 1181, Schriber, The Dilemma of Arnulf of Lisieux, pp. xv, 2. 9 In the course of excusing his audacity in presenting Bishop Geoffrey with meager eloquence unworthy of the prelate’s wisdom, Arnulf praises the science of rhetoric; Invectiva, p. 86: “Opus autem ipsum praesumo majestati vestrae, fortassis impudenter, offere, cum nullatenus orationis jejunae macies mereatur in sapientiae vestrae venire conspectum . . . . Si quid tamen in judicium libeat devocare, non de qualitate operis, sed de opificis cognoscatis affectu. Hujus examinationis periculo me securus expono nec cognitionem formidans nec latam ex cognitione sententiam. Qui licet rhetoricum colorem formet scientia, non affectus, si non hanc peritiae laudem, saltem bonae voluntatis gratiam consequemur.” Arnulf displays his prejudice in favor of liberal education when he derides Girard’s nephews as illiteratos (Invectiva, p. 88) and the bishops Girard attempted to place on the sees of Poitiers and Limoges, one as a man of no letters who could not even be eloquent in his vernacular sermons (et nullarum hominem litterarum et in vulgari etiam sermone fere prorsus elinguem, Invectiva, p. 104) and the other as a famous adulterer apt neither at the world nor at the knowledge of letters (nec seculari preditus nec scientia literarum, famosus apud omnes adulter, Invectiva, p. 105). 10 On Arnulf’s letter-writing and collections of letters see The Letters of Arnulf of Lisieux, ed. Frank Barlow (London, 1939; Royal Historical Society, Camden third series 61); The Letter Collections of Arnulf of Lisieux, trans. C. P. Schriber, (Lewiston, 1997; Texts and Studies in Religion 72); John Van Engen, “Letters, Schools, and Written Culture in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries,” in Dialektik und Rhetoric im früheren und hohen Mittelalter, ed. Johannes Fried (Munich, 1997), pp. 97–132.

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the ways in which his patterning of representations operates. His discursive system makes such representations insulting by anchoring them within particular concepts of personality then being debated in the field of theological anthropology. I thereby wish to elucidate the notions of individuality and identity actually at work in this aggressive system, since they were the sites of transgression and the targets of violence and, as such, informed the expression and efficacy of the invective. The invectiva was written ca. 1133 in the wake of a specific event, the dual papal election that followed the death of Pope Honorius II in 1130. With Honorius barely dead, the papal chancellor Haimeric managed the hasty election of Cardinal Deacon Gregory of St. Angelo as Innocent II by the cardinals in immediate attendance, while yet the other cardinals elected Petrus Pierleoni, cardinal priest of St. Calixtus, as Anaclet II. Anaclet and his followers prevailed in the struggle that soon broke out in Rome and forced Innocent into exile. However, although Anaclet was able to remain in Rome until his death in 1138, it was Innocent who ultimately obtained recognition from most of the churches and rulers of western Europe. The propaganda Haimeric and his followers produced on Innocent’s behalf did much for his cause, bringing aboard such potent religious leaders as Norbert of Xanten (d. 1134), the founder of the Praemonstratensian order of canons regular, Bernard, abbot of Clairvaux (d. 1153), and Peter the Venerable, abbot of Cluny (d. 1156). Indeed, that reformed monastic orders flocked to Innocent’s banner has led some historians to consider that the schism of 1130–1138 articulated an ongoing conflict between old-fashioned Gregorians, exemplified by Anaclet, who continued to equate ecclesiastical reform with opposition to imperial influence upon ecclesiastical affairs, and those church leaders, represented by Innocent, who strove for a spiritual renewal of the church as a whole.11 Whatever the merit of this and other interpretations, the prominent use of propaganda remains undeniable. In this war of words, the polemical literature launched by Innocent’s partisans weakened the position of Anaclet and his supporters. This is not to say that Anaclet did not have his own propagandists. Reimbald of Liège, a voice of caution between the polarized factions, in a letter of late 1130 mentioned

11 For a recent survey on the historiography of the schism, see Mary Stroll, The Jewish Pope. Ideology and Politics in the Papal Schism of 1130 (Leiden, 1987), pp. 1–9.

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a text written by Girard of Angoulême in support of Anaclet. Reimbauld wondered why Girard’s piece was excluded from a funeral roll where his own letter had been inserted for greater dissemination. He directly accused the monks at Cluny, who seem to have received Girard’s missive, of prohibiting publication of the text and of truncating it before passing it on to Innocent.12 Girard’s tract is no longer extant; it was probably destroyed by the partisans of Innocent. Yet, Arnulf obviously knew of the original tract and summarized it sufficiently in the Invectiva to enable us to infer that it likely was the report Girard gave of the papal election of 1130. Girard’s account was so detrimental to Innocent, affirming Anaclet’s legitimacy on legal grounds, that it prompted Arnulf’s own need to attack Pope Anaclet himself in the Invectiva.13 For, though Arnulf, as most northern French churchmen, took the side of Innocent II, he nevertheless primarily focused his Invectiva against Girard of Angoulême, producing a pamphlet that has been described as surpassing in violence, vileness of language, and monstrosity of charges the most libelous texts composed in the campaign of vilification against the Anacletians.14 Girard, however, had enjoyed a fine reputation prior to the schism of 1130. Of Norman origin like Arnulf himself, he had been educated in Paris and began his magisterial career in Périgueux following which he ascended to the Angoumois episcopate in 1102. An eloquent schoolman, learned canonist, and highly respected prelate, he was named papal legate by Pope Pascal II in 1107–1108, thus acquiring extensive jurisdiction over the ecclesiastical provinces of Bordeaux, Auch, Tours, Bourges, and Dol. Throughout his tenure as bishop and as legate, Girard focused sustained attention on the way legal proceedings were conducted, insisting in particular upon the presentation of authoritative written proofs.15 His activities also extended to architectural projects, and in

12

Epistola de schismate,in Reimbaldi Leodensis Opera Omnia, ed. Charles de Clercq (Turnhout, 1966; CCCM 4), p. 119; Reimbald’s accusation is also partially cited in Invectiva, p. 85 note 3. See also Stroll, The Jewish Pope, pp. 176–177. 13 Invectiva, p. 85, note 3, and also chapter 6, p. 102, where Arnulf displays his knowledge of Girard’s writings in support of Anaclet. 14 Stroll, The Jewish Pope, p. 160. Bishop Manfred of Mantua also hurled accusations at Anaclet that equal Arnulf’s in their violence and scurrilousness. 15 Rowan Watson, “Scribes and Writing Offices: The Charters of the Counts of Angoulême before the late 13th Century,” in Landesherrliche Kanzlein im Spätmittelalter (Munich, 1984), pp. 659–679, at pp. 664–665; Soline Kumaoka, “Les jugements du légat Gérard d’Angoulême en Poitou au début du XIIe siècle,” Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes, 155 (1997), pp. 315–338.

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1128, he presided over the inauguration of the splendid cathedral he had undertaken to construct in his episcopal city; St Peter of Angoulême stands to this day as a splendid jewel of Romanesque architecture.16 At the root of Arnulf’s vindictiveness there may have been some personal resentment which developed in the course of antagonistic meetings. There is little doubt that Arnulf met Girard face to face but no record of the exact circumstances of these encounters. Arnulf was probably too young to have been present on the occasion of Girard’s ascension to the episcopal see of Angoulême in 1102.17 However, he may well have been in Sées where he is known to have been a canon when Girard, then bishop and legate, attended the consecration of the cathedral along with Arnulf’s uncle and brother, respectively the bishops of Lisieux and of Sées. One of the editors of the Invectiva, J. Dieterich, has speculated reasonably that, since Arnulf attended courses in liberal arts in Angoulême where Girard exercised his brilliant professorial talent, he might have been taught by Girard.18 I would further suggest that master and pupil may well have entered into one those disputes which resonated throughout the twelfth century and which are most notoriously illustrated by Abélard’s challenges to such masters as Roscelin, Anselm of Laon, and William of Champeaux. Abelard’s account of his ‘misfortunes,’ lamenting the attacks hurled at him, is exactly contemporaneous with Arnulf’s Invectiva. Even if Arnulf had no personal grudge against Girard, Girard’s account of the papal election of 1130 and his marshaling of Aquitaine on Anaclet’s side would have provoked his and others’ ire.19 A year or

16 Arnulf describes in these terms Girard’s rebuilding of the cathedral, Invectiva, p. 85: Ecclesiam quidem episcopalem de mortuis edificasti lapidibus, non ut domum Domini decorares, sed ut inde conquirendi pecuniam duceretur occasio . . . Dicebatur ad opus ecclesiae postulari, quicquid ad tuam cupiens avaratiam exigebas . . . 17 This did not prevent him from implying that he had actually seen the event, Invectiva, p. 88: Redit in mentem mihi miserabile illud nefandissimumque spectaculum, dum te precurrentem multitudo reliqua sequeretur, et tu clerum quadam celeritate preires ad cathedram, ne revocata ratione stolida mutaretur impulsio, cum alii quidem trahi soleant et plerumque compellantur inviti. Ea die de Engolismensi ecclesia veritas et misericordia recessit . . . See below at note 37. 18 Invectiva, p. 83; see note 8 above. 19 Aquitaine remained loyal to Anaclet until 1135 when Duke Guillaume IX succumbed to the emotional rhetoric of Bernard, Stroll, The Jewish Pope, p. 93. The visit Bernard made to Aquitaine is described by Ernald, abbot of Bonneval (1100–1156) in chapter 6 of his Sancti Bernardi abbatis Clarae-Vallensis vita et res gestae libris septem comprehensae. Liber Secundus, PL CLXXXV, cols. 286A–291D. See also below at note 28.

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so after the dual election of 1130, Bernard of Clairvaux sent a letter to the bishops of Aquitaine in an attempt to sever their allegiance to Anaclet’s legate, Girard of Angoulême. This epitome of epistolary eloquence constitutes Bernard’s foremost attempt to formulate a legal argument in favor of Innocent’s election;20 his treatment of canon law, as indeed the specifics of his accusations, provided a template for Arnulf’s own assault against Girard and Anaclet.21 Thus far, it is the overall content of Arnulf’s diatribes that has attracted scholarly attention, at times indignation, though most often disregard. No detailed study, however, has been made of the Invectiva from the viewpoints of its organization and of the broad range of insults it contains, nor does the scope of this chapter permit such a full analysis. Rather, after a brief overview of the Invectiva’s structure and of the themes deployed to frame the undesirable, highly negative, indeed illegitimate personae of Girard and Anaclet, I will focus on a particular insult, that of “difformitas,” ugliness. Strategies of Character Assassination Arnulf attacks Girard and Anaclet in the course of eight chapters, which combine ongoing character assassination with a sprinkling of biographical events and a few legal considerations. Beginning with Girard (chapters 1 and 2), Arnulf initiates his insulting tone by apostrophizing the legate directly, addressing him by his first name. That deference with which Arnulf directed his tract to the attention of Bishop Geoffrey of Chartres was totally absent when he referred to

20 Epistola 126, partial edition in Pontificum Romanorum qui fuerunt inde ab exeunte saeculo IX usque ad finem saeculi XIII vitae, ed. Johann Matthias Watterich, 2 vols. (Leipzig, 1862; reprint, Aalen 1966), pp. 196–198; full edition in Epistolae. I, Corpus epistolarum 1–180. Sancti Bernardi Opera Omnia, ed. Jean Leclercq and Henri Rochais, vol. 7 (Rome, 1957), pp. 109–119. For an analysis of the letter, see most recently, Stroll, The Jewish Pope, pp. 97–99. 21 Bernard, for instance, imputed that Girard turned to Anaclet for personal reasons, only after Innocent II had refused him the status of papal legate. This accusation is found only in the letter Bernard wrote to the bishops of Aquitaine (Epistola 126, see above at note 20), in which he heavily blackened Girard’s character, Stroll, The Jewish Pope, p. 97, with additional references to studies on Girard and on Bernard’s characterization of him, and p.174, on Bernard’s tendency to denigrate his opponents. Arnulf borrowed Bernard’s accusation in his Invectiva, p. 101, noting that Innocent refused Girard the position of legate on the basis of Girard’s poor administrative record.

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Girard (and later to Anaclet) both of whom, throughout the Invectiva, were granted neither title nor quality, being addressed as ‘tu’ rather than the ‘vos’ employed for Geoffrey. The transgression here involves a linguistic impropriety in that a simple archdeacon, Arnulf, deliberately ignored church hierarchical formulae. Arnulf’s decidedly negative biography of Girard stressed his ugliness, his old age, his humble origins, his avarice, his debauched sexuality, and his immodest language. Similar themes reappear in chapter 3, this time to denounce Anaclet. Indeed, as with Girard, Arnulf dared to refer to Anaclet by his personal name, Petrus, or Petrus Leonis. The only mention of the papal name ‘Anaclet’ in the Invectiva occurs in chapter 7, where Arnulf castigates Girard for spreading through Aquitaine the notion that Petrus Leonis had assumed the papacy under the name of Anaclet “or, more truthfully, that of antichrist.”22 In Arnulf’s terminology, Petrus’ origins were not merely humble and ignoble, but vile since spoiled by Jewish ancestry; Petrus’ whole being is said to declare Jewish perfidy, including his facial features. Usury, cupidity, and ambition are held to account for his ecclesiastical advancement; gluttony, incest, and depraved sex to characterize his deportment. With chapter 4, we enter a realm of respectful rhetoric as Arnulf now turned his attention to Innocent. Here again, the mode of address is significant; throughout this chapter, Arnulf exalted Innocent in the third person, never once referring to him by name, either private (Gregory)

22

Cepisti per fines Aquitaniae discurrendo pristinae predicationi tuae predicare contraria: Petrum scilicet Leonis Anacleti nomine (sed verius antichristi!) papam esse . . . Invectiva, p. 103. Arnulf accuses Petrus as being the antichrist several times throughout the Invectiva, in chapter 3 (p. 93), and in chapter 4 within a speech attributed to Innocent (p. 98). The chronicle of Maurigny and Bernard of Clairvaux also emphasized Petrus’ antichristic nature. Ex chronico Mauriniacensi, in Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France, vol. XII, ed. Léopold de Lisle (Paris, 1877), p. 79: Honorius II . . . defunctus est. Cardinales . . . Gregorium quemdam scientia ac religione praeclarum sibi praeficiunt, et nimis festinantur, ut a quibusdam dicitur, pontificalibus induunt insignibus. Id illius gratia dispensationis factum dicunt, ut Petrum quemdam, qui saeculariter ad Papatum videbatur aspirare, spe sua frustraretur. Fuit hic Petrus Petri filius, filii Leonis. Leo vero a Judaismo Pascha faciens ad Christum, a Leone baptisari et ejus nomine meruit insigniri. Hic vir . . . genuit filium nomine Petrum, magnae famae magnaeque potentiae post futurum . . . . Inter caeteram sobolem, cujus plurima multitudine sexus utriusque a quibusdam Antichristus gloriabatur, genuit hunc Petrum, de quo sermo nunc est, qui litteris traditus a quibusdam Antichristi praeambulus appelatur.” The chronicler’s description of Petrus and of his lineage is fair throughout, and he seems to wish to distance himself from the accusations he relates, although he ultimately concedes that Gregory/Innocent was the better papal candidate.

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or papal (Innocent).23 Innocent was thus evoked expansively, his contours generically sketched by the qualities which Arnulf ascribed to him: beauty, integrity, sobriety, chastity, learning, eloquence. Additionally, Innocent was granted the opportunity to speak. Arnulf presented him as delivering speeches laden with biblical quotes, which in turn moved his audience to eloquent words of support. By contrast, Petrus and Girard were never allowed rhetorical agency. Undefined by contingencies such as name, Innocent was praised as an exemplar, while Girard and Petrus were denigrated as individualized beings. It is also in chapter 4, and thus in association with the praise of Innocent as a paragon, that Arnulf finally introduced the question of election, giving a detailed and manipulative account of the recognition of Innocent as the legitimate successor of St Peter. Repeatedly denouncing Anaclet as having bought the papal office, Arnulf implies that there had been but a single election, that of Innocent. In chapter 5, however, he admits, albeit in a tortured exegesis, that Anaclet had been elected too. “Even if”, Arnulf wrote, “some form of election were to be invoked in support of Petrus, neither the quality of his life nor his reputation would back up the promotion of this Petrus, who usurped the chair of St Peter through bribery after Pope Innocent’s election, this Petrus whom his very life and name condemn.”24 It is worth noting that whereas Anaclet continued as before to be designated as Petrus, Innocent was here called Pope Innocent. Significantly, the only two such specific references to Innocent by name and office appear in this single passage of the Invectiva where Arnulf, undertaking a legal discussion of what had been a double papal election, explicitly endorses the legitimacy of Innocent’s papacy. The narrative context in which Arnulf raised the electoral issue is also significant for he was at this point describing the council of Etampes gathered by King Louis VI of France in 1130 to determine the legitimate pope. Arnulf reports that Girard was not present at this council but sent letters. These letters probably contained the tract, now lost but then censured by the Cluniacs, in which Girard powerfully argued, on legal grounds, for the

23 Arnulf begins his encomium of Innocent by addressing Girard with these words: “At vero, quis sit iste, quem reprobas, consequenter attende.” Invectiva, p. 96, thereafter referring to Innocent by laudatory circumlocutions. 24 Porro Petrum per opulentam manum cathedram posterius usurpasse, virum adeo vita reprobatum et nomine, ut si ipsum etiam quelibet electionis forma defenderet, promoveri tamen vitae qualitas et infamia minime sustineret, Invectiva, p. 100.

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validity of Anaclet’s election. I will soon return to the ways in which Arnulf denigrated these letters. Suffice it now to say that at this point in the Invectiva (chapter 5), Arnulf in effect picked up the legal gauntlet thrown down by Girard whose tract seems to have made it impossible at least not to consider that Anaclet had been elected.25 Rather than responding to Girard’s legal argument, Anaclet emphasized the personal considerations upon which the council based its decision to support Innocent. This tactic is evidence of the difficulty Arnulf had in resting Innocent’s case solely on juridical grounds.26 Such grounds comprised the following points, stressed by Arnulf: Innocent was elected first, and by the elite of Roman officials, whereas Anaclet had bought the papal see, and even if he might justify his election, he still would not be acceptable given the poor quality of his life and reputation. Ignoring the canonical procedure for papal election available since the Gregorian Reform, Arnulf cited a decree promulgated by Pope Leo I (d. 461), enjoining the preference, in case of a divided vote, of the most learned and most deserving papal candidate.27 Canon law, as thus manipulated by Arnulf, allowed to focus upon, and so justified, his technique of personal characterization. The last three chapters (6–8) accordingly are swollen with a renewed flow of insults as Arnulf now returned to Girard and his evil success in keeping the emperor, England, Aquitaine, and Sicily in Anaclet’s camp.28

25

On the letters sent by Girard to Etampes, see below at notes 31 and 32. At the time Arnulf was writing, in the mid-30s, neither the legal status of Innocent’s election nor his claim to the papacy had achieved full consensus. 26 Modern scholarship is divided about whether or not the legality of the election was critical in deciding between the two popes. Stroll, however, argues for the crucial importance of the legality of the election, The Jewish Pope, p. 94. 27 Sumpta igitur ex magni Leonis papae decreto sententia, ubi se partium vota diviserant; visus est illis jure canonico preferendus is, qui majoribus studiis juvabatur et meritis, Invectiva, p. 101. 28 Even King of France Louis VI (d. 1137) had initially been in favor of Anaclet’s election, although by the time of the council he held in Etampes (April 1130), he had been convinced to side for Innocent. Emperor Lothar III recognized Innocent in October 1130, and King Henry I soon thereafter in January 1131. Aquitaine, inspired by Girard, remained loyal to Anaclet until 1135 when its duke capitulated to Bernard’s arguments. Neither Scotland nor Sicily ever left the party of Anaclet. See recently Stroll,The Jewish Pope, pp. 66–70, 93. Arnulf reports on the council of Etampes in Invectiva, chapter 5, p. 100; about King Henry’s recognition of Innocent, Invectiva, pp. 102–103; about Aquitaine and Sicily’s loyalty to Anaclet, Invectiva, pp. 103–104, with the bulk of these pages devoted to Girard’s actions in favor of Anaclet’s cause.

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Arnulf’s strategy was in line with the rhetoric deployed by Bernard and by Innocent’s other supporters, none of whom made sustained efforts to argue in depth for or against the canonical validity of either papal election.29 Rather, choosing the criterion of personal worthiness as the major determinant of legitimacy, they embarked on a campaign of defamation, blackening the characters of their antagonists.30 The Rhetoric of Vilification The Invectiva is constructed symmetrically. The three first and the three last chapters malign the personalities of Girard, of Anaclet, and of the Anacletians; the two central chapters praise Innocent to justify his election. It was from these latter central chapters, at the heart of the Invectiva so to speak, that Arnulf launched a specific form of insult which crystallized a theme recurrent throughout the Invectiva. Arnulf, taunting Girard’s inability to attend the council of Etampes, sneered: “Ah, Girard! Since you could not be present at this council, you sent a messenger carrying letters sealed with the image of your ugliness—Cui concilio quoniam interesse, Girarde, non poteras, Cum litteris tuae deformitatis imagine consignatis nuntium destinasti.”31 As we have seen, Girard’s letters presumably presented a substantial legal defense for Anaclet’s election; yet Bernard, who was at Etampes, indeed swayed the council to Innocent’s side, never mentioned them.32 Arnulf, care29

Stroll, The Jewish Pope, pp. 82–101. The position currently prevalent among modern scholars seems to be that, of the two, Anaclet’s election was the least illegal. 30 In her monograph, The Jewish Pope, Stroll advanced the argument (p. 177) that, though not passive, Anaclet’s supporters refrained from vilifying Innocent. In section 3 of the Invectiva, Arnulf states his wish to describe the qualities of the two competing popes, p. 92: “Placet hoc loco mihi utriusque personae describere qualitatem, ut de duobus similem similis elegisse proberis et cupidum cupidus adorasse.” 31 Invectiva, p. 100. See a brief discussion of this passage in Brigitte Bedos-Rezak, “L’Individu, c’est l’autre. Signes d’identité et principes d’altérité au XIIe siècle,” in L’Individu au Moyen Age. Individuation et individualisation avant la modernité, eds. B. Bedos-Rezak et Dominique Iogna-Prat (Paris, 2005), pp. 51–52. It is conceivable that Arnulf was referring to letters closed by an imprint from a signet-ring, and not to patent letters (charters) authorized by a documentary seal. The term imago, however, tended to designate a seal rather than a signet-ring, and the expression ‘consignatis’ refers to a validating rather than to a closing device. Neither the ring nor the seal would be likely to carry a physiognomic portrait of Girard but, unlike the ring, the seal could have accommodated the full fledged representation of an episcopal figure. 32 Henri Maratu, Girard évêque d’Angoulême vers 1060–1136 (Angoulême 1866), p. 278.

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ful to avoid giving substance to the content of the letters by revealing them in full, instead cast doubt on their legitimacy by denigrating their seal, that is, the very device that confirmed their authority. The seal, in Arnulf’s words, bears the image of Girard’s “difformitas.” Twelfth-century seals did carry an image. Indeed, a primary meaning of imago in this period was seal, and Arnulf’s formulation echoes the final clauses of many contemporary northern French charters in which individuals in whose names the charters were issued stated that they had strengthened the recorded deed with an imprint of their image (Fig. 22).33 Seals often presented an anthropomorphic figure, but eschewed any display of particular physiognomic traits. The seal was an image of likeness, a portrait of status and function emblematized by attributes and official attire. Episcopal seals would typically have displayed a bishop in full vestments, coiffed with miter and brandishing a crozier (Fig. 4, 9). No actual seals of Girard seem to have survived but there is evidence that he did seal the charters issued in his name. Many such charters have survived and mention in their final clauses, that he had affixed the seal of his authority in order to strengthen their contents.34 In fact, the record of Girard’s own sealing practice testifies to the closeness of the relationship seals entertained with personal status. When Girard decided to succeed Arnaud de Chabenac (d. 1131) in the archiepiscopal see of Bordeaux so as to keep this important territory on Anaclet’s side, he noted in a charter given after assuming his new functions that he would seal with his antecedent Angoulême seal since his seal for the church of Bordeaux was not as yet made.35 While none of these seals have survived,36 extant contemporary seals indicate that additional archiepiscopal attributes, such as a pallium, might have been introduced onto Girard’s new seal, along with an

33 See examples at chapter 7 above, notes 86–92. The remote possibility that Arnulf was referring to a signet-ring is considered here at note 31 above. 34 Maratu, Girard evêque d’Angoulême, pp. 327–373, where is appended an edition of the charters issued in the name of Girard or relating to his administration between 1104–1132. 35 Maratu, Girard évêque d’Angoulême, no. 34, pp. 370–371: . . . Et, ut hoc donum firmius et certius permaneat, in hac charta propria manu subscripsimus et sigillo Engolismis ecclesiae, qui nondum in Burdagalensi ecclesia sigillum feceramus, muniri praecepimus. 36 Girard’s seal is no longer extant but charters issued in his name during his tenure as bishop of Angoulême were sealed, as evidenced in their final clauses where Girard repeatedly announced the apposition of his seal, Maratu, Girard évêque d’Angoulême, pp. 327–363, published as pièces justificatives.

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updated legend. Seal iconography thus delineated only the contours of the seal owner’s particular functions, not his physiognomy; individualized identity would have been confined to the legend. In view of these facts, Arnulf’s denunciation of the seal as bearing the image of Girard’s ugliness might seem gratuitously polemical were it not for the fact that the themes of forma, difformitas, and imago constitute an ongoing trope within the Invectiva. Arnulf repeatedly returned to descriptions of the bishop’s bodily form, apparently based upon actual encounters with Girard.37 He particularly mocks Girard’s abnormally large, globular, and squinting eyes, conflating a strabismus with Girard’s duplicity, his inability to see things straight figuratively as well as literally.38 Physical appearance is equated with moral being, corporeal defect with mental deficiency. Arnulf described Girard as a two-headed monster (monstrum biceps) after the latter had, in addition to his existing bishopric of Angoulême, assumed the archepiscopal see of Bordeaux.39 The very form of the body, treated allegorically or not, is made to signal the soul’s quality and the person’s rectitude. When Arnulf reproached Girard for his decrepit body and berates his obesity, portraying him as a fat bull,40 he took advantage of yet another presumed correspondence, that which associates fleshly appearance with animality. Animality is a distinctive part of Arnulf’s repertoire of insult useful in conveying the blindness of his targets to things divine. Within a few lines of the Invectiva’s opening, Girard was marked out as an animal (homo animalis) who, fleshy in appearance and sensual, was unable to perceive the divine.41 The count of Poitou, a supporter of Girard and Anaclet, was also termed by

37 See above, at notes 17 and 18. On possible and actual encounters between Arnulf and Girard, see Invectiva, pp. 82, 92. 38 Arnulf’s ungenerous if astute use of Girard’s squint to explain Girard’s duplicity appears in Invectiva, chapter 7, p. 104: Non potes negare, quin falsi crimen et inconstantiae simul incurreris, levissime transfuga, modo harum, modo illarum partium malefidus assertor, cujus in singulis operibus duplices vias duplex signat intuitus, et affectus mentis ancipites ambiguus manifestat aspectus. Sicut enim corporales oculos tuos innaturalis quedam distorsit enormitas, ut ad idem contuendum mirabili nequeant discordia convenire, sic et mentis oculi dissident, ration scilicet et affectus. 39 Invectiva, chapter 7, p. 106. 40 Invectiva, chapter 1, p. 87: Numquid miseram senestutem tuam et instantem decrepiti corporis naturali necessitate defectum et hiantis sepulchri claustra non vides? . . . Totus execrandi corporis tui labor et otium . . . Insults about Girard’s obesity appear in chapter 2, p. 92: Videre mihi videor, te quasi taurum pinguem in sublimi synadolem cathedram insedisse . . . 41 Invectiva, chapter 1, p. 87.

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Arnulf an animal (voluptatum vir, homo animalis), one who remained in error because incapable of reaching the higher levels of spirituality.42 Still on the theme of animality, beyond the insults to his squint and his obesity, Girard was called an owl (bubo) and a bull. Thus, with Girard, difformitas seems clearly to have referred to physical deformities miming a defective character. With Anaclet, formerly Petrus Pierleone, the insult of difformitas took on a specific turn. Still accompanied by accusations of animality, debauchery, and sensuality, facial features now become racial traits, which more radically, exponentially, traced the blindness to and distance from God. Anaclet, a Cluniac monk promoted to the rank of cardinal, had been born to a wealthy Roman family that had staunchly supported the reforming papacy throughout the Investiture Controversy. Yet, many found it difficult to forget (or forgive) Annaclet’s Jewish origins, for his grandfather had been a Jew before converting to Christianity. Anaclet’s Jewish ancestry became a target for denigration, and his detractors, Arnulf chief among them, made ample use of this ancestral material.43 As early as 1119, during the council of Reims, Anaclet’s brother, Gratianus, was described in unflattering terms by an audience which thought he looked more like a Jew or a Saracen than a Christian and commented that his beautiful clothes could not dissimulate his being deformed of body (corpore deformen).44 For Arnulf too, Jewishness left a specific stamp: “Desiring to spare my readers horrors, I [Arnulf] judged it appropriate to avoid mentioning Petrus’s

42

Invectiva, chapter 8, p. 107. On the strength of the anti-Jewish propaganda during the schism, at the hands of Archbishop Walter of Ravenna, Manfred of Mantua, Peter the Venerable, Bernard of Clairvaux, and Arnulf, see Stroll, The Jewish Pope, pp. 156–168, and M. Stroll, Symbols as Power. The Papacy Following the Investiture Contest (Leiden, 1991), pp. 124–126. As Stroll herself remarks in The Jewish Pope (pp. 1–9), scholars have been divided about the role of Anaclet’s Jewish ancestry in his rejection as a legitimate pope. Gilbert Dahan, Les intellectuels chrétiens et les Juifs au Moyen Age (Paris 1990), states (p. 528), in his only mention of Anaclet in that study, that no one in the twelfth century would have dared reproach a baptized Jew for his origins, and that only political expediency made Bernard of Clairvaux denounce Anaclet’s origin in an accusation that did not in any case seem to have played an important role in the schism. J.-Cl. Schmitt, La conversion d’Hermann le Juif (Paris, 2003), pp. 229–233, notes that, during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, Jews who had converted to Christianity were seen as having retained the trace of their origins. 44 Orderic Vitalis, writing 16 years after the council was held, reports the scene in Book XII of his Historia Ecclesiastica, 6 vols., ed. Marjorie Chibnall (Oxford, 1969–1980), vol. 6, pp. 266–268; Stroll, The Jewish Pope, p. 167. 43

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vile familial ancestry and his Jewishness, although it is from such Jewish origins that Petrus contracted both his flesh (materiam carnis) and the basis for his congenital error (primitias ingeniti . . . . erroris).”45 Arnulf then reproached Petrus’s ancestors for having used their ill gotten wealth to marry into the best Roman families, thereby corrupting the purity of the Roman stock. Arnulf closes his genealogical comments with an invective which betrays his belief that Jewishness had a distinctive visage: “Such is the genetic mixture, Girard, from which your Petrus comes, he whose face projects an image of Jewishness, he whose wishes and feelings connote Jewish perfidy—Ex hac itaque diversorum generum mistura, Girarde, Petrus iste tuus exortus est, qui et judaicam facie repraesentat imaginem, et perfidiam voto referat et affectu.”46 As counterpoint to Girard’s ugliness and Anaclet’s Jewish face, Arnulf held that “Innocent’s visage and eyes display a robust simplicity, his face is proof of his soul’s chastity. His face indeed shines with such a dignity that it forces respect from the viewer. Amidst the other gifts of its munificence, the divine force greatly endowed him with a special grace so that . . . he may inspire love solely by his appearance . . . I judge, [Arnulf continued], that Innocent attracts his audience powerfully because he seems to have received within his own body the premises for an incipient eternal happiness.”47 Where Anaclet’s

45 Invectiva, chapter 3, p. 92–93: Libet igitur preterire antiquam nativitatis ejus originem et ignobilem similem prosapiam, nec Judaicum nomen arbitror opponendum, de quibus ipse non solum materiam carnis, sed etiam quasdam primitias ingeniti contraxit erroris. 46 Invectiva, chapter 3, p. 93. 47 Invectiva, chapter 4, p. 96: Apparet in oculis ejus et vultu robusta simplicitas, et quae castitatem animi probet, verecundia faciei. Quae profecto facies tanta dignitate resplendet, ut et ipsi quandam reverentiam ingerat intuenti . . . . Ei quoque hanc inter cetera munificentiae suae dona specialem gratiam vis divina largita est, ut omnes se videntes mansueta sibi benignitate conciliet et dilectionem solo nanciscatur aspectu . . . . Quod quidem eo magis allicit intuentes, quoniam id in ipso quoddam illius eternae jocunditatis videtur initium, cujus eum in ipso corpore quasdam existimo primitias accepisse. Twelfth-century descriptions of physical aspects do not necessarily associate beauty with moral rectitude and divine inspiration. To the contrary, a face devoid of attractive features can still be made to appear beautiful when illuminated by an interior light. In the vita of St. Etienne of Obazine (d. 1154), abbot of the Cistercian community of Obazine, the hagiographer wrote: ‘En, cernitis, domini fratres, abbatem hunc corpore modicum, statura brevem, habitu despicabilem, vultu deformem, sed quicquid in eo viditis, totum Spiritu Sancto et fide plenum sciatis,’ quoted in Paul Michel, Formosa Deformitas. Bewältigungsformen des Hässlichen in mittelalterlicher Literatur (Bonn, 1976), p. 89.

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Jewish flesh embodied the substrate of congenital error, Innocent’s body incorporated a promise of eternal bliss. Anaclet’s innate condition was inherited and limited by the historicity of its particular circumstances; Innocent’s inherent qualities had a divine origin and partook of eternity. In Arnulf’s polarized construction, the distinctive body was held to embody and to signify the character of the earthly and mortal individual, whereas the regular-featured and normative body connoted otherworldliness.48 The figurative form of the flesh was thus seen as heuristic, imparting knowledge of its organizing principle. Given their particularizing features, the corporeal forms of Girard and Anaclet appeared to be self-representational as they failed to represent something other that their own contingent and transient selves. Being their own individual models, so to speak, they fully affirmed their alienation from a transcendental archetype. Herein lay, I believe, the thrust of Arnulf’s insulting strategy. ‘Difformitas’ as Individuality When early twelfth-century commentators interpreted Genesis 1: 26, which relates the creation of man in the image and resemblance of God,49 they characteristically conceived of such a creation as an imprinting process whereby the divine model applied itself onto man.50 Seal metaphors were recurrently invoked to exemplify this act of creation. God was the seal-die’s material (the bronze), engraved with the image of his substance (Christ), which in turn applied itself to the malleable framework of man (the seal impression).51 This insistence on the image as imprint had implications both for the understanding of image and

48 Innocent is described as being of moderate stature, Invectiva, chapter 4, p. 96: si personae qualitas, ut prius habitudo corporea describabitur, vir staturae mediocris, quae nec abjectum brevitas nec immanem reddat immensae quantitatis excessus. 49 Robert Javelet, Image et ressemblance au 12e siècle, de saint Anselme à Alain de Lille, 2 vols. (Paris, 1967); David N. Bell, The Image and Likeness. The Augustinian Spirituality of William of Saint-Thierry (Kalamazoo, 1984); Gerhart B. Ladner, Ad Imaginem Dei: The Image of Man in Medieval Art (Latrobe, 1965); Ladner, Images and Ideas in the Middle Ages (Rome, 1983); John E. Sullivan, The Image of God. The Doctrine of St. Augustine and its Influence (Dubuque, Iowa, 1963); Maur Standaert, “La doctrine de l’image chez S. Bernard,” Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses, 23 (1947), pp. 70–129. 50 See chapters 6 and 7 above. 51 See examples and discussion of seal metaphors above in chapter 6, at notes 70–71, 74–77, and chapter 7, at notes 57–68, and 98 where mention is made of the relationship

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for the ontological conception of man. Impression implies a contact between archetype and copy; the type not only produces a like image but also deposits, and remains as, the constitutive mark of its original presence. The notion of image as imprint therefore promoted a semiotic modality whereby the image, in actualizing its constitutive relationship to an originating model, signified by incorporating its model’s character. Likeness was extended from the visual world of appearances, and came to be formulated as an active principle, articulating the gradation of contact and presence in the relationship between sign and thing. An image, thus, not only represented; it also presented, that is, rendered present. In the world of social praxis, imprinted images newly produced by episcopal seal matrices, and affixed to documents, were appreciated as relics of the presence of their owners with whom they shared a key identity of definition: both were imprints. For, in the sphere of anthropology, man was an imprint, and as such carried an inner presence of its divine model to which he might strive to conform, thereby attempting to re-form himself in the image of his creator. Reformation, however, occurred only through human effort to resemble the model’s imprinted image. If such an image, already distorted by original sin, was further deformed by individual wickedness, becoming a de-formed mark, then conformity to the divine prototype would no longer be possible. For Arnulf, thus, Girard and Anaclet had done more than straying from a proper model; they had defaced its template beyond recognition. Arnulf concluded the chapter (3) devoted to Anaclet by attacking his character thus: “You, Petrus, as you roll from vice to vice, obfuscating the brightness of the divine face that was sealed upon you (signatum super te lumen divini vultus [Psalm, 4,7]), de-forming the image of God (deformata jam divinitatis imagine Dei), obscuring by your turpitude the resemblance to this image (et ipsius similitudine flagitiis offuscata), how dare you presume to be the successor of Christ, without first assuming his resemblance? ‘There has never been an agreement between Christ and Satan, never a communication between light and darkness’ [Paul, 2.Cor.6,15].”52 From this scripturally-charged vituperation to the identification of Anaclet as antichrist, the leap was short

between the Latin terms impressio and character, with bibliographical references to studies of the polyvalent term ‘character.’ 52 Invectiva, chapter 3, p. 96.

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and Arnulf did not hesitate, as we have seen.53 Arnulf, in fact, was recapitulating through his assault against Anaclet two fundamental transgressions: the first is the original sin, by which humankind lost its resemblance to God, and second, the Jewish rejection of Christ as the Messiah. In Anaclet, Adam’s sin was conflated with the Jewish sin. Arnulf’s attack on Anaclet emerged directly from contemporary theological anthropology, making it clear that “difformitas” stood in contrast to “conformitas.” By not conforming to the divine model, by eschewing resemblance with it, by rejecting it, Anaclet had erred and further distorted the model’s image within him. Innocent’s life, by comparison, had integrity and nothing in it was deformed by crime (nihil deformatum crimine); divine providence had uniquely pre-formed him for this unique [papal] dignity (divina providentia preformatus). Arnulf promoted Innocent as the most deserving papal candidate by affirming Innocent’s conformity with the divine plan within and for himself.54 Likeness and resemblance were therefore central mechanisms for the fulfillment of selfhood. To be was to be alike, and identity was a matter of sameness. Arnulf made it clear that for him, as for his contemporaries, one is, exists, and becomes by virtue of resemblance. Imitations of bad models, on the other hand, created bad beings. Thus Arnulf described Girard’s nephews as being worthy of their uncle (avunculo dignos esse nepotes): “The nature of consanguinity as well as education and the example of the life you lead have conformed your nephews to you by resemblance (similitudine conformavit) so, at the beginning there was nature, advancement came through education, and power was acquired through the example of your ambition, avarice, and lust.”55 Arnulf concluded this paragraph by pointing out that Girard never imparted to anyone the form of a life of integrity.56 Later in the Invectiva, Arnulf denigrated the alliance between Girard and his supporters, the count of Poitou and the bishop of Limoges, by once again invoking the dynamic of similarity: “You [Girard] could not

53 See above at not 22, and Invectiva, chapter 3, p. 98, where Anaclet is said to have been universally recognized by the nations as being the antichrist and publicly denounced as such, on the basis of his descent (ortu), ambition, and life; and Invectiva, chapter 4, p. 98: “Either Anaclet was the antichrist himself, or he himself prepared the times for his coming.” 54 Invectiva, chapter 4, pp. 96–97. 55 Invectiva, chapter 2, p. 89. 56 Invectiva, chapter 2, p. 89: Neminem ad vitae innocentiam informasti.

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have esteemed these individuals if you had not thought them similar to you, nor could you have formed for your Petrus members different from yourself and your persona. Artifacts always reveal their particular maker; their appearance express, like an image (velut imago), their maker’s purpose and art.”57 This somewhat complicated the valence of likeness and conformitas since a bad model, a bad craftsman, was a source of deformity. In a cultural context where the imperative of likeness was ontologically absolute and where the formation of personality was achieved through replication, the social order in effect, somewhat paradoxically, rested upon its malleability, for such malleability was necessary to be imprinted by the model. This in turn made the definition and maintenance of normative templates of principal importance. Deformed personalities, according to the principle of social replication, were contagious. Arnulf expressed fear of deviant models as dangerously polluting when, at the very beginning of the Invectiva, he declared that he would leave unmentioned the horrors of Girard’s youth so that the ears of his readers might not be polluted (polluantur) by the filth of Girard’s intemperance and avarice.58 Among the numerous disparagements Arnulf cited in attacking Anaclet’s papacy, one alleged that Anaclet was personally infected (pollutus) by infamy so that the very power emanating from his person caused (contrahat) contempt.59 Arnulf’s vocabulary here is epidemiologic. Anaclet was contagious, a danger for the health of the Christian community. Within Arnulf’s biographical sketches of Girard and Anaclet, however biased, there remained some factual information. Anaclet did have Jewish ancestry and Girard was old, and possibly fat and crosseyed. Still, Girard’s seal could not (in its small module), and would not

57 Invectiva, chapter 7, p. 105: Sed neque tu nisi tibi consimiles poteras estimare condignos nec dissimilia tibi capitique tuo Petro membra formare. Semper enim proprium quelibet opera confitentur artificem, et in eis voluntatis eorum vel scientiae velut imago quedam expressa. See also in chapter 4, p. 99, where the notion that the head conditions the form of the limbs is used, this time to convince Innocent to accept the papal office: “Numquid illud precipue nobis onus incumbit, cum velut in humano corpore, is qui presidet, capitis formam, membrorum reliqui similitudinem gerant, ut qui preest, nutum adhibeat, difficultates expediat obsequentium labor? 58 Invectiva, chapter 1, p. 87: Taceo ignobiles pueritiae questus . . . ne aures eorum ad quos haec scripta ventura sunt, tuae sordibus incontinentiae simul et avaritiae polluantur. Further accusations of pollution are made against both Girard and Anaclet in connection with their alleged sexual excess, see Invectiva, chapter 1, p. 90, chapter 3, p. 95, chapter 7, p. 106. 59 Invectiva, chapter 4, p. 98.

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(in its culturally informed template) have registered such physical malformations. The preceding analysis of the tropes of form, image, and deformity in Arnulf’s Invectiva suggests a way to understand Arnulf’s treatment of Girard’s seal image. The “difformitas” said by Arnulf to appear on Girard’s seal alludes to Girard’s deformation of the Godly image within himself to the point that, no longer capable of conformity with the divine model, he had come primarily to be shaped by mortal, natural, animal, genetic, and terrestrial principles. A similar accusation was hurled, as we have seen, against Anaclet who, though also an imprint of God, had similarly defaced the divine image within himself. Accused of disabling the divine template within them, both Girard and Anaclet were seen to have opened themselves to diverse influences and rejected the desirable similitude to a unique and eternal exemplar. Deformity, however, was not simply dissimilitude. Dissimilitude was the reducible difference between a good model and its aspirant copies, but deformity implies the deliberate bending of the model’s template. It was this alleged heinous violation that Arnulf’s attack on Girard’s seal image conveyed. The seal was capable of expressing difformitas since, in terms of the then current representational principles, it actualized its referent’s character so that there was congruence between the properties of the representation and of the represented object. The imago difformitatis of Anaclet and of Girard, therefore, extended well beyond physical ugliness reaching ontological levels and bearing social implications. Arnulf’s particular array of condemnations reveals a keen awareness of the potency of imago once its metaphorical and representational valence had been extended from the linkage between man and God to the social relationship between human beings. The divinely unique and eternal archetype held to modulate all imagery had called for “conformitas,” that is, a striving toward likeness, sameness, and identity. This system of “conformitas” tended to reject anything that had forsaken its original form, which explains why imago, seen as a material form at once susceptible to external influence and the reproducer of other forms, became a locus of sociological and ethical discourse. Arnulf’s concept of form did not rest upon a dualism between beauty and ugliness. The differences he detailed between Girard and Innocent did not contrast Girard’s ugliness with Innocent’s beauty but compared depictions of Girard, and of Anaclet, constructed of individualized details, fatness, decrepitude, strabismus, Jewishness, with a portrait of Innocent as generic, standardized, and stereotyped. It was

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conformity, not beauty, which was the apposite of difformitas. Difformitas, no longer anchored by a model, referred to a specific individual who had the potential of de-forming others. Individuality, conceived as marker of alterity, signified impropriety and exclusion. The Invectiva proclaimed that Girard’s seal, as an image of his divergent ‘ugliness’ rather than of a shared societal ontology, invalidated the writings to which it was affixed and by which Girard expressed his support of Anaclet. Indeed this same seal legitimized Arnulf’s execration of both Girard and Anaclet. Arnulf’s semantics, metaphorical axes, and thematic associations appear to have been governed by contingency and theory. On one hand, the fact that the Invectiva abused contemporary historical personages within a defined actuality made it an immediate product of particular circumstances. Arnulf’s Invectiva was above all a partisan manifesto designed to legitimate the papacy of Innocent II. On the other hand, Arnulf’s formulation of insult conformed to metaphorical concepts then in use within prescholastic schools to express the bearing of ontological definitions of selfhood on the ethical nature of man in society.60 Arnulf’s articulation of his insulting rhetoric around breaches of form and deformations of image reveals a deep anxiety about the perceived malleability of man and society, their susceptibility to various impressions, the fluidity of their boundaries. Defacing the image of God within oneself was equated with deviancy since it opened the possibility of alternative models and principles. Despite its racism, Arnulf’s denunciation of Anaclet is not all that different from his outpouring against Girard in that, for both, Arnulf held individual features to be negative markers. In a culture where the ideal of proper being was unique and absolute, individuality, as alterity, could only mean disorder.

60 There was also an abstract reflection about the purpose, nature, form, and legitimacy of vituperation, which was conducted on a theoretical level. A case in point is provided by the Aurea Gemma (ca. 1120), see above at note 3.

CHAPTER NINE

THE SEMIOTICS OF PERSONALITY IN THE MIDDLE AGES In Book Two of his De Miraculis, Peter the Venerable, abbot of Cluny (d. 1156), discusses the relationship between the abbey of Cluny and one of its priories, the Parisian monastery of Saint-Martin des Champs. Abbot Peter emphasized the resemblance between the Mother House, Cluny, and its daughter, Saint-Martin des Champs, by using a seal metaphor. He wrote: “the abbey of Saint-Martin was so similar (consimile) to Cluny, so alike in everything (in totum conforme) that, more than any other Cluniac priory, Saint-Martin was the image of Cluny, as an image (simulacrum) imprinted in wax duplicates the image (imago) of the originating seal, so that those things which are separated by distance, are in fact not different but are absolutely one.”1 The seal metaphor deployed here by Peter the Venerable is just one example of the many rhetorical uses of seal imagery so characteristic of prescholastic writings. Peter’s specific use of the metaphor, however, is particularly indicative of the two-tiered problematic which forms the core of this chapter. The first tier involves the referential capacity of seals and the representational nature of seal images. Abbot Peter considers that a seal’s main signifying axis hinges on the imprinting process which extends a particular form of likeness between an originating model and its replicated image, the imprint. The second issue raised by Peter the Venerable is the dialectic of singularity and multiplicity. By utilizing the seal metaphor, Peter clearly articulated his notion that Cluny and its affiliated houses, though collective and communal, were above all a single entity. While acknowledging the distance which separates a model, be it the seal matrix or the abbey of Cluny, from its multiple products, that is, seal impressions or Cluniac 1 PL CLXXXIX, col. 916B, and Petrus Cluniacensis Abbas, De miraculis libri duo, ed. Denise Bouthillier (Turnhout, 1988; CCCM 83), p. 107. Peter’s Latin text is particularly concise, a feature lost in the English translation, but his terminology is revealing: . . . Est enim idem Sancti Martini monasterium, suo Cluniacensi monasterio in ordinis, religionis, ac fervoris proposito, pro modo suo ita consimile, et in totum conforme, ut velut simulacrum cerae impressum, multis aliis ad Cluniacum pertinentibus monasteriis originalis sigilli imaginem familiarius repraesentet, et exceptis locorum distantiis que simul esse non possunt, non diversa, sed prorsus unum sint.

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priories, Peter denies that such separation between model and copy entails any difference between the two. By invoking the seal metaphor to illustrate the intimacy of the likeness which results from replication, Peter argues that such likeness establishes a continuum between model and copy which, ultimately, has the power to cancel, not the distance, but any distinction between the two. Thus, through replication, a distinctive mark is transformed into a type. In the more general terms of Peter’s seal metaphor, reality was less represented than rendered visible as reproduction. The fusion of representation with reproduction, and the conflation of distinct communities into a single entity, would seem to challenge any practice of personal identification. Yet, it was by the evocation of the very sign of identity then most current, the seal, that Peter the Venerable and his Northern European scholarly contemporaries struggled to clarify notions of personhood and personality, thereby revealing how fundamental seals were in their contemplation and expression of personal identity. A first focus of this chapter, therefore, will be a consideration of the concepts of person and identity as they were dialectically articulated in twelfth-century discursive and sealing practices. Seals were personal, belonging to a specific individual, but seal impressions were products of mechanical reproductive techniques which assured the multiplication of identical images. Furthermore, seal owners were identified, indeed defined, by their placement within status-sensitive categories. The formulation of personal identity thus hinged upon a resemblance to others sharing a similar status or function, while signs of identity substantiated principles of sameness and categorization by their very mechanism of production and system of representation (Fig. 21). I contend that the performance of a personal seal that de-personalized its owner was not paradoxical, but rather was informed by semiotic concepts which organized the reference between seal and subject by means of an ontological participation. This system of representation, organized through a logic of immanence and stereotypy, was to be challenged as markers of individuation appeared on personal seals. Individuality, nevertheless, remained distinct from personal identity and its assertion continued to be infrequent on personal seals. It was in fact on the seals of urban communities that representational practices came to exhibit features of differentiation. A second purpose of this chapter, therefore, is to analyze the ways in which the formulation of urban identity on city seals challenged preceding traditions for representing both the person and the city. I propose to show

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that city seals re-routed representational and conceptual practices away from typification by introducing three novel formulae: pluralism, distinction, and verisimilitude. Finally, in pondering the implications of such modifications in representational practices for the medieval dialectic of identity and individuality, I will build upon the argument made in the previous chapter to show that the urban sign exploited the principle whereby, in terms of the then current semiotics of representation, individuality was akin to otherness. Identity and Individuality In Merovingian and Carolingian times, the royal seal had normally been exclusively used for documentary authorization. By early Capetian times, however, the royal seal was used only sporadically. The regularization of royal sealing during the late eleventh century was actually part of a broader extension of sealing practices to religious and aristocratic elites at that time. Indeed the royal seal was by then much changed, conforming in form and character to the newly created episcopal and aristocratic seals. Thus, the seals that were disseminated after the turn of the first millennium were, in several senses, quite novel.2 From a social viewpoint, post-millennial seals, no longer a royal and male prerogative, were used within a gendered and broader, albeit still elite, spectrum of society. From the viewpoint of referentiality, post-millennial seals were identified with a specific individual throughout his or her lifespan, whereas earlier seals had operated as an apparatus of the office of kingship. More official than personal, Carolingian royal seals obscured the contingency inherent in any individual ruler by reference to the continuing symbolic activity of statehood.3 Post-millennial seals, however, were closely associated with the person of their owners. They displayed names, titles, and territorial designations.4 They were often interred with their owners at their deaths.5 Furthermore, it was the

2

The full argument is made in chapter 4 above. See chapter 4 above. 4 See for instance the seals used by high-ranking Flemish families, which include some of the earliest non-royal western European seals, René Laurent, Sceaux des princes territoriaux belges (Xe siècle–1482), 2 vols. in 3, (Brussels, 1993). 5 Brigitte M. Bedos-Rezak, “L’au-delà du soi. Métamorphoses sigillaires en Europe médiévale,” Cahiers de civilisation médiévale 49 (2006), pp. 337–358, at pp. 346–349. 3

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personal seal of the abbot, the abbess, and the bishop which alone was used to authorize charters given in the name of entire communities such as abbeys and chapters. Even after communal institutional seals appeared, soon thereafter, these bore the name and the image of an individual patron saint, thus remaining rooted in the person, personalized (Fig. 24).6 Eleventh-century seals were also novel from the viewpoint of size and iconographic display. Early royal seals had been produced from small, typically antique, signet-rings which bore Hellenistic or Roman portraits (Fig. 15). By the early eleventh century, all seals were being produced from large independent metallic matrices, their increased size allowing for the engraving of a full anthropomorphic figure personalized by contemporary clothing (Fig. 16).7 Finally, as the affixation of seals came increasingly to be noted in the final clauses of charters, such diplomatic discourse recorded that the authors had ordered that “their transaction be reinforced with the imprint of their image (Fig. 22);” impressio, imago were indeed recurrent standard terms used to designate the seal affixed to documents.8 This vocabulary epitomizes the most noteworthy aspect of the seals that spread in the 1100s, namely, their intense and explicit linkage to the persons of their owners. This connection, as we have seen, is per-

6 B. Bedos-Rezak, “Du sujet à l’objet. La formulation identitaire et ses enjeux culturels,” in Unverwechselbarkeit. Persönliche Identität und Identifikation in der vormodernen Gesellschaft, ed. Peter von Moos, (Cologne, 2004; Norm und Struktur 23), pp. 63–82, at p. 72, where I part from D. Ursmer Berlière’s conclusions that early monastic seals belonged to the ecclesia, that is, were common to the chapter and the abbey, “Le sceau conventuel,” Revue Bénédictine 38 (1926), pp. 288–309. 7 Jean-Luc Chassel, “L’essor du sceau au XIe siècle,” in Pratiques de l’écrit documentaire au XIe siècle, ed. Olivier Guyotjeannin, Laurent Morelle and Michel Parisse, Bibliothèque de l’Ecole des chartes 155 (1997), pp. 221–234; B. Bedos-Rezak, “Une image ontologique: Sceau et ressemblance en France préscolastique (1000–1200);” in Etudes d’histoire de l’art offertes à Jacques Thirion. Des premiers temps chrétien au XXe siècle, ed. Alain Erlande-Brandenburg and Jean-Michel Leniaud (Paris 2001; Matériaux pour l’histoire), pp. 39–50, at pp. 39–40; B. Bedos-Rezak, “Signes et insignes du pouvoir au Moyen Age: le témoignage des sceaux;” in Comité des Travaux historiques et scientifiques. Section de philologie et d’histoire jusqu’en 1610. Actes du Cent Cinquième Congrès national des Sociétés Savantes [Caen, 1980], (Paris 1984), pp. 47–62, reprinted in B. Bedos-Rezak, Form and Order in Medieval France. Studies in Social and Quantitative Sigillography (Aldershot, 1993), I. For a broad analysis of the function of images on seals, see Michel Pastoureau, “Les sceaux et la fonction sociale des images;” L’image. Fontions et usages des images dans l’Occident médiéval, ed. Jérôme Baschet and Jean-Claude Schmitt (Paris 1996), pp. 275–308. 8 See chapter 7 above, at notes 86–91.

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haps best understood by focusing on the cultural milieu from which emerged the newly sealed charters of lay and ecclesiastical elites. This milieu’s engagement with semiotics, theology, and anthropology drew from and cultivated a specific theorization of the sealing process. As impressio the seal was a mark, which actualized presence through an originating contact with its causal agent. The very act of imprinting articulated and dramatized these principles of marking origin and materializing presence. The conflation of the seal’s mechanical origin (the matrix) with its human causation (the sealer) naturalized the process of representation, since the seal produced itself as a physical extension of its owner. The seal impression, thus participating in a natural relation with the sealer it represented, embodied the real presence of the individuals who affixed them. The seals’ mode of signification was through incarnation. As imago, the seal was a likeness, comprehending an ontological resemblance with its owner: both seals and sealers were imprinted images carrying within their very matter the mark of an original prototype. As such the seal was central to the construction of a reality conceived as the embodiment of types into particulars. Typification was projected by the seal’s anthropomorphic image which referred to the natural species, and by the emblematized body which referred to the social species. Royal seals, aristocratic seals, episcopal seals, though belonging to individuals and though displaying a distinct human body, nevertheless portrayed the status of the person represented, a standing that was shared by other members of the same social category. Personal identity on seals was thus expressed in terms of the rapport of sameness which existed between different individuals belonging to a common ordo: ego was an instance of ordo (Fig. 21). Individuality and Personhood The individual person was represented on seals as a person subsumed within his group. Significantly, definitions of ‘person’ in contemporary artes dictaminis devoted to the composition of legal documents9 make it clear that personhood and individuality were not fully commensurate. In the Aurea Gemma written in Italy ca. 1119–1124 by a master 9 On this particular genre, see Martin Camargo, Ars Dictaminis Ars Dictandi (Turnhout, 1991; Typologie des sources du Moyen Age occidental 60), pp. 18–21.

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of French origin, Henricus Francigena, the author considers three different sorts of persons. First, the person is defined “according to nature: Person is the individual substance of a rational nature.”10 This definition, which had first appeared in Cicero’s De Legibus (1.3), took its exact form in Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiae (5.18), and received wide circulation in Gratian’s Decretum (D.3 c.3) and in twelfthcentury theological treatises focused on Trinitarian and incarnational theology.11 The second definition of ‘person’ in the Aurea Gemma is said to represent the civic and legal sense of the term: “Person is the excellence of an office by which someone leads in a city or in a church;”12 that someone (quis), is an official of a corporate person. Thus, the third definition of person is as a collective. This definition was derived from the principle of Roman law which held that a group formed a corporate entity which was, by legal fiction, a kind of person.13 Such a collective person acted through its agents, the bishop, the abbot, the mayor, who constituted, as we have seen, the second type of ‘person.’ The author of the Aurea Gemma in fact distinguishes between two kinds of person, natural (substance of rational nature) and legal (an official or a community), precisely in order to define the exact nature of a specific type of grant, the individual privilege. According to Aurea Gemma, a privilege can be granted to a natural or to a legal person but a privilege granted individually to a natural person is awarded in such a way “that no one of his family or rank shares the privilege with him.”14 To be a ‘person,’ therefore, involved a shared status and rank (ordo), whereas to be an ‘individual’ involved distinction and singularity. To what extent did twelfth-century personal seals connote singularity? In the first instance one notes that they bore the names of their owners. Yet, names remained part and parcel of the aristocratic pat-

10 Aurea Gemma, 2.21–27, ed. and trans. Steven Wight, http://dobc.unipv.it/scrineum/ wight/index.htm 11 See for instance Nico den Bok, “Richard de Saint-Victor et la quête de l’individualité essentielle,” in L’individu au Moyen Age, ed. B. Bedos-Rezak and Dominique Iogna-Prat (Paris 2005), pp. 123–143; M. Bergeron, “La structure du concept latin de personne,” in Etudes d’ histoire littéraire et doctrinale du XIIIe siècle 2 (1952), pp. 121–161; Marie-Dominique Chenu, “Tradition and Progress” in Nature, Man, and Society, in the Twelfth Century. Essays on New Theological Perspectives in the Latin West (Chicago, 1968), pp. 310–330, at pp. 325–326; Mary L. O’Hara, The Logic of Human Personality. An Onto-Logical Account (Atlantic Highlands, 1997), pp. 54–56. 12 Aurea Gemma, 2.24. 13 Aurea Gemma, 1.74, 2.43. 14 Aurea Gemma, 2.21–27.

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rimony, less individual than familial. On her seal Matilda, the wife of King Henry I of England, was called Matilda secunda: this was the only means of distinguishing her seal from that of her mother-in-law, Matilda, wife of William the Conqueror.15 The seal of Count Robert of Flanders (1109–1111) bears the word junior, so as to distinguish his seal from that of his defunct father, also named Robert.16 Eponymy also characterized the lineage of the counts of Beaumont-sur-Oise. The seals of Mathew II in 1173 and of Mathew III in 1177 cannot be differentiated although they were impressed from different matrices, but the need to distinguish his seal from that of his father may be the reason why Mathew III imprinted as a counter-seal the seal of his own wife, Eleanor of Vermandois. Mathew III was in fact the first count of Beaumont to display, on his later second seal, a heraldic coat of arms (Fig. 25).17 Heraldry, of course, is a grammar of lineage and not an individual sign of identity. So both names and heraldic emblems participate in the seal’s logic of sameness, ultimately categorizing the sealer as member of a kin group or of an ordo (Fig. 26).18 The attempts at particularization we have just reviewed therefore lead to two conclusions. First, such attempts derived less from a strategy of individuation than from ad hoc adaptations to a representational system which, based upon generic images, was calibrated to subsume individual references. Second, they reveal the strength of stereotypy as a cultural template which consistently re-directed expressions of individuality toward a crucible of likeness. This suggests that individuality was equated with marginality and otherness, signifying the state of being outside the boundaries of convention, whether social or representational.19 15 Such is the hypothesis convincingly developed by Timothy A. Heslop, “Seals,” in English Romanesque Art 1066–1200, ed. George Zarnecki, Janet Holt and Tristam Holland (London, 1984), pp. 298–319, at no. 336, p. 305. 16 Robert junior may have used his first seal with the junior legend while his father Count Robert (d. 1093) was still alive, but the earliest surviving attestation of the junior seal only dates from 1109: Laurent, Sceaux des princes territoriaux belges, vol. 1/1, no. 6, p. 151. 17 Seals of the comital family of Beaumont are described in Louis Douët d’Arcq, Collection de sceaux [des archives de l’Empire], 3 vols. (Paris, 1863–1868), vol. 1, no. 1050, p. 433 (seal of Mathieu II); no. 1051 (seal of Mathieu III); no. 1053, seal of Eleanor of Vermandois, wife of Mathieu III, imprinted as a counter-seal to her husband’s seal. 18 This argument is further developed in Bedos-Rezak, “Du sujet à l’objet,” pp. 74–75. 19 See chapter 8 above.

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Distinction and individuation, when they did come to govern representation on seals, first appeared on seals belonging to an ‘other,’ to a social newcomer, the town, which was an individual, yet not an individual person, since it was a collective one. Even before it entered the universe of social experience significantly in the course of the twelfth century, the city had loomed large in the mental landscape of the Middle Ages. The imperial bullae of the Carolingian rulers bore a topographical image accompanied with the word Roma.20 In Carolingian miniatures, such as the Psalter of Utrecht, the Bible of Charles the Bald, or the Codex Egberti, the city was represented by an ideogram, a turreted wall surrounding cupola-topped buildings, a design which was retained in later Romanesque and Gothic illustrations.21 This formula, by sublimating the constructed into the symbolic, projected the city as an ideal space. Such images of the ideal city were replications of imaginary models from biblical and classical antiquity. In this system of representation, the city image was a memorial to the grandeurs of an imperial past, and a topos articulating the essential goals, values, and meanings of a divinely ordered human history. The city, therefore, was a sign and a symbol, devised and manipulated mostly in a clerical milieu where it modulated the dynamics of politics and religion within both immediate and eschatological settings. There was, in essence, only one city, and it was the center of the world, the axis of human destiny: it was the heavenly city, the Jerusalem of the pilgrims; the eternal city, the Rome of Christianity’s headquarters. Thus, when in mid-twelfth century towns first began to use seals as a medium of representation, they could draw upon two independent iconographic traditions: the ideogram of the city, and the generic icon of the personal seal. These two formulas operated by means of quite

20 Martine Dalas, Corpus des sceaux français du Moyen Age. Tome 2: Les sceaux des rois et de régence (Paris, 1991): Charlemagne’s lead bull, no. 19 bis, p. 97; Helen Rosenau, “Notes on some Qualities of Architectural Seals,” Gazette des Beaux-Arts, 90 (1977), pp. 78–84, at p. 82; Percy E. Schramm, “Die Metallbullen der Karolinger,” in Schramm, Die zeitgenössischen Bildnisse Karls des Großen (Leipzig/Berlin, 1928; Beiträge zur Kulturgeschichte des Mittelalters und der Renaissance 29), pp. 60–70. 21 Chiara Frugoni, A Distant City. Images of Urbain Experience in the Medieval World (Princeton, 1991), first three chapters; Pierre Lavedan, Représentation des villes dans l’art du Moyen Âge (Paris, 1954); Ingrid Katz, “Les représentations de villes dans l’art chrétien avant l’an Mil,” L’information d’histoire d’art 3 (1964), pp. 130–132.

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different semiotic processes: the city ideogram posited a radical duality between an abstract transitory image inessential to its eternal, otherworldly, referent; the personal seal, on the other hand, was a physical embodiment of its referent’s actual presence. Both formulas, however, shared a representational system predicated upon repetitive stereotypy. It is not surprising, therefore, to find on the earliest city seals, an image of the ideal city directly inherited from Carolingian iconography (Fig. 27), often housing within its walls the figure of the local patron saint.22 Furthermore, the legends on some of these early seals tend to contain no allusions to a municipal organization, emphasizing rather the status of the city in history or within the twelfth-century ecclesiastical or imperial hierarchy. Thus the legends on the seals of Cologne, Mainz, and Trier, all belonging to the first half of the twelfth century, read: ‘God blesses the people and the city of Trier’ (trevericam plebem dominus benedicat et urbem); ‘Holy Cologne, by the Grace of God, faithful daughter of the Roman church’ (sancta colonia, dei gratia romanae ecclesiae fidelis filia); ‘Golden Mainz, special daughter of the Roman church’ (aurea magontia romane ecclesie specialis filia).23 Even though the legend of the city seal of Beauvais (second half of the twelfth century) signals that the seal is that of the commune of Beauvais (sigillum belvacensis communie), the word civitas appears within an urban panorama marked by a strong religious character (Fig. 27). 22 See for instance the city seals of Beauvais and Cambrai, both from twelfth-century matrices and both displaying an architectural city-scape typical of Carolingian imagery, Brigitte M. Bedos[-Rezak], Corpus des sceaux français de Moyen Age. Vol. 1: Les sceaux de villes (Paris, 1980), no. 94, p. 102 (Beauvais), no. 166, p. 153 (Cambrai). A detailed analysis of the earliest urban seals in medieval Europe may be found in Harald Drös and Hermann Jakobs, “Die Zeichen einer neuen Klasse. Zur typologie der frühen Stadtsiegel,” Bild und Geschichte Studien zur politischer Ikonographie. Festschrift für Hansmartin Schwarzmaier zum 65. Geburtstag, ed. Konrad Krimm and Herwig John (Sigmaringen, 1997), pp. 125–178. 23 The classical study on the city seals of Cologne is that of Toni Diederich, Die alten Siegel der Stadt Köln (Cologne, 1980). The political significance of the text and iconography deployed on the twelfth-century seals of Trier, Cologne, and Mainz is discussed by H. Jakobs, “Eugen III. Und die Anfänge europäischer Stadtsiegel,” in Anmerkungen zum Bande IV der Germania Pontificia (Cologne/Vienna, 1980), pp. 1–34; Manfred Grotten, “Studien zur Frühgeschichte deutscher Stadtsiegel: Trier, Köln, Mainz, Aachen, Soest,” Archiv für Diplomatik 31 (1985), pp. 443–478; H. Jakobs, “Nochmals Eugen III. Und die Anfänge europäischer Stadtsiegel,” Archiv für Diplomatik 39 (1993), pp. 85–148. On the claim that the analysis of urban seal diffusion and iconography should include a consideration of regional cultures, see B. BedosRezak, “Le sceau médiéval et son enjeu dans la diplomatique urbaine en France,” in La diplomatique urbaine en Europe au Moyen Âge, ed. Walter Prevenier and Thérèse de Hemptinne (Louvain-Apeldoorn, 2000), pp. 23–44, at p. 33–34.

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This association displays a distinct Augustinian slant whereby the city was subsumed within a church, in conformity with Augustine’s vision that “The house of the Lord, the city of God, which is the holy Church, is built in every land . . . by men who, on believing in God, have become like ‘living stones’ on which the house is being built.”24 Later commentators echoed this vision. Aimon of Alberstadt (d. 853), for instance, followed Augustine in declaring that the city of the Apocalypse (the new Jerusalem) is “the holy church, which is called civitas, because it has many inhabitants, it extends to the four quarters of the earth, and because it is the dwelling place of God.”25 Since we know nothing about the circumstances surrounding the manufacture of Beauvais’ seal, we can only speculate about the sources for this iconographic model and ponder the meaning of civitas, which, incidentally, designated an episcopal city, as indeed Beauvais was.26 Throughout the thirteenth century, urban seals continued to be engraved with formulaic city images.27 No longer of Carolingian style, such images drew upon contemporary models to express their transcendental symbolism. Thus, on the Belgian seal of Tongres as on the French seal of Marmande, the city walls and gates are flattened, in a way that may well derive from contemporary representations of Jerusalem on world maps (Fig. 28).28 That the generic architectural seal of the town of Frankenberg in Hesse, engraved ca. 1249, sought to evoke Rome may be inferred from the striking similarities that emerge when comparing the city seal’s monumental arrangement to the rep24 Augustine of Hippo, City of God, trans. Henry Bettenson (Harmondsworth, 2004), Book VIII, chap. 24, p. 335. 25 Haymonis Halberstatensis episcopi expositionis in apocalypsin b. joannis libri septem, Lib.VII, cap. 21, PL CXVII, col. 1192B: Et civitatem sanctam Hierusalem novam vidi descendentem de coelo a Deo [Apocalypse, 21:2]. Haec civitas sancta Ecclesia est, quae idcirco civitas appellatur, quoniam a multis inhabitatur, et in quatuor mundi partes distenditur, habens habitatorem Deum. 26 For additional texts and seals inspired by Augustine’s thought, see B. BedosRezak, “Du modèle à l’image: Les signes de l’identité urbaine au Moyen Age,” Le verbe et l’image. Les représentations du monde du travail et des élites dans la ville médiévale, ed. Marc Boone (Louvain-Alperdoorn, 2002), pp. 189–205, at p. 196 and note 24. 27 See for instance Arles, no. 44bis, p. 59; Belaye, no. 98, p. 105; Belvès, no. 103, p. 106; Cajarc, no. 160, p. 147; Marseille, no. 711, p. 158; Pamiers, no. 513, p. 386; Thionville, no. 678, p. 496. All citations are from Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes. 28 Marmande, Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, nos. 387 (thirteenth century)-388 (fourteenth century), p. 304; Silver seal-matrix of Tongres (thirteenth century), British Museum, BM MLA 1850, 9–24, 4; see John Cherry, “Imago Castelli: The Depiction of Castles on Medieval Seals,” in Château Gaillard XV. Etudes de castellologie médiévale (Caen, 1992), pp. 83–90, at p. 85.

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resentation of Rome on the golden bulla (1246) of Henry Raspe, king of the Romans.29 The legend surrounding the city-scape on the royal bull reads: roma.caput.mundi.regit orbis frena rotundi (Rome, head of the world, guides the reins of the earth). The topographical Rome of Carolingian bullae had reappeared on German imperial bulls, in an arrangement that progressively centered on the Colosseum.30 City seals bearing the symbolic and generic image of a city remained devoid of human life, connecting buildings and not human beings, omitting reference to the town’s social dimension and institutional organization. This absence of any reference to the citizenry corresponds to the interchangeability of the images, which figure on various city seals without actually identifying any city in particular.31 Indeed, the operation of symbolism permitted the icon of Rome or of Jerusalem to appear on any urban seal where it signified the city as a category.32 In this respect, the economy of representation is consistent on contemporaneous aristocratic, ecclesiastic, and urban seals: the image is an icon which signals membership within a category. Yet definition of the social category itself was quite another matter. Bishops, for example, formed a group definable by objective functional and doctrinal criteria, whereas no such standard definition came to delineate the constitutive elements of the medieval town even as the urban phenomenon was revolutionizing the human and territorial geography of

29 Rainer Kahsnitz, “Siegel und Goldbullen,” in Die Zeit der Staufer: Geschichte, Kunst, Kultur, ed. Reiner Haussherr (Stuttgart, 1977), vol. 1, pp. 17–107, Catalogue. no. 27–162; vol. 2: ills. 11–92; vol. 3, ills. 1–30, 83–104, at vol. 1, nos. 56 (seal of King Henry Raspe) and 146 (seal of Frankenberg); plates in vol. 3, nos. 26 (seal of King Henry) and 74 (seal of Frankenberg); see also Cherry, “Imago Castelli,” p. 83. 30 A topographical view of Rome, designed with the words Aurea Roma inscribed in the field, reappeared on the bull of Emperor Conrad II (1024–1039), Otto Posse, Die Siegel der Deutschen Kaiser und Könige von 751–1913, 5 parts in 3 vols. (Dresden 1909–1913), vol. I/II, no. 8, plate 13 and vol. V, no. 9, p. 19; the motif remained on the bulls of Conrad’s successors, reaching realistic designs as far as some buildings were concerned (in particular the Colosseum and the pyramid of Cestius) on the bull of Frederic I (1152–1190), Posse, Die Siegel, vol. I/II, no. 4, plate 21, no. 4, plate 22, and vol. V, nos. 2, 4, p. 25. The image, still consistently present on imperial seals, received full development on the bull of Emperor Louis IV the Bavarian (1314–1347), Die Siegel, vol. I/II, no. 8, plate 50 and vol. V, no. 8, pp. 37–38. 31 On architectural formulae on medieval seals, see Bedos-Rezak, “Du modèle à l’image,” pp. 194–197; Cherry, “Imago Castelli,” pp. 83–90; Ghislain Brunel, “Sceaux, art et société au Moyen Âge,” Bulletin de la Société nationale des Antiquaires de France (1995), pp. 266–272, and M.N. Duval’s response to Brunel’s presentation (at pp. 270–271). 32 See above at notes 22, 28, 29.

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postmillennial Europe. Furthermore, the movement toward communal organization was, at first, vigorously opposed.33 The ideal city-seal thematically inscribed the actual medieval town within an unfolding, divinely ordered, historical process which harked back to biblical times and pointed to the eternal future of mankind. This ideogram provided urban communities with a form of legitimacy yet it remained a relatively infrequent motif on city seals. Several reasons may account for this phenomenon. While potent by virtue of its eschatological connotations, the iconic city also projected the attributes of terrestrial power, particularly in its embodiment as Rome. The situation of Rome as the seat of papal auctoritas and imperial potestas tended to situate the city as a constitutive element of dominance. By the thirteenth century, emperors were not the only ones to display urban topography on their seals. This device was also used by ecclesiastical and lay lords who, through their jurisdictions, claimed a territorial power which had its base and means of effectiveness in town (Fig. 29).34 The motif of the ideal city may have been too closely wedded to biblical allusion and to the idiom of lordly dominance to conform specifically to the medieval urban experience and to its aspirations. It may well be that, in its very distinct connotation, the image of the ideal city lacked the power of differentiation, where a vector capable of such discrimination was crucial to the semiotics of urban personality.

33 For the continuing difficulties scholars have in defining the medieval city, see Robert S. Lopez, “The Crossroads within the Wall,” in The Historian and the City, ed. Oscar Handlin and John E. Burchard (Cambridge, 1963), pp. 27–43; Jacques le Goff et al., ed., La ville médiévale (Paris, 1980); Susan Reynolds, Kingdoms and Communities in Western Europe, 900–1300 (Oxford, 1984). On the fact that there was no systematic concurrence between the existence of an urban community and the use of a corporate seal by that community, see Pierre Michaud-Quantin, Universitas. Expressions du mouvement communautaire dans le Moyen-Age latin (Paris, 1970), pp. 299–300; Bedos-Rezak, “Le sceau médiéval et son enjeu dans la diplomatique urbaine en France,” pp. 36–40. On the confrontational nature of the urban movement, see David Nicholas, The Growth of the Medieval City: From Antiquity to the Early Fourteenth Century (London 1997), pp. 139–168. 34 B. Bedos-Rezak, “Towns and Seals: Representation and Signification in Medieval France,” in Bulletin of the John Rylands University of Manchester 72/3 (1990), pp. 35–48, at p. 46, reprinted in Bedos-Rezak, Form and Order, no. XII. Robert Maxwell, The Art of Medieval Urbanism. Parthenay in Romanesque Aquitaine (University Park, 2007), gives an excellent analysis of the significance of urban motifs on the seals of the lords of Parthenay, pp. 179–180, 187–191, 205.

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The Saint and the City Religious themes too, which like the iconic city had early on characterized the iconography of early urban seals, later became relatively infrequent to the point where a recent quantitative study of 740 French city seals between 1175 and 1500 (about 740 seals) shows that about 80% of French urban seals are utterly devoid of any reference to the sacred: 2.3% display a religious building and 19.6% some other religious theme.35 Though infrequent, scenes of martyrdom, symbols of divinity, reliquaries, and Marian, christological and hagiographic images, do appear on town seals. The seals of the Albigensian town of Castres (Tarn) co-opted the cultic symbols of its local saint, Vincent of Saragosse, whose relics had provided the nucleus for the town’s development. Saint Vincent, a Spanish martyr of Diocletian’s persecution whose passion had been recorded by St Augustine and by the poet Prudentius (d. after 405), had died in Valence (Aragon) in ca. 304, where he was buried. Three medieval cities thereafter claimed to house as relic the full body. One translatio describes how, in 863, Vincent’s corpse was brought to the Benedictine abbey settled in Castres since 625, and was entombed in a basilica located immediately outside the abbey’s enclosure so as to allow the presence of female worshipers.36 The presence of the relic attracted many pilgrims, including those who stopped there en route to Compostela, and brought wealth to the burg of Castres. By the twelfth century (in 1160), the expanding communia of Castres received its charter of privileges from the lord of Trencavel, and the basilica’s bell tower came to serve as communal belfry. Two city seals are known for 35 Christian de Mérindol, “Iconographie du sceau de ville en France à l’époque médiévale,” in La religion civique à l’époque médiévale et moderne (Chrétienté et Islam), ed. André Vauchez (Rome 1995 ; Collection de l’Ecole française de Rome 213), pp. 415–428. 36 De S. Vincentio martyre archidiacono caesaraugustano, Valentiae in Hispania. De reliquiis sancti Vincentii. Historia translationis auctore Aimoino monacho, in Acta Sanctorum Januarii, vol. 2, ed. Ioannes Bollandus and Godefridus Henschenius (Antwerp, 1643), pp. 400–406. Modern scholarship has established an institutional continuity between the Benedictine abbey established at Hauterive (dioc. Albi) ca. 625 and the abbey of St-Benoit of Castres, the existence of which is attested in 819. In 1074, both the abbey of StBenoit and the church of St-Vincent became dependencies of the abbey of St-Victor of Marseille, Jean-Louis Biget, “Une abbaye urbaine qui devient cathédrale: Saint-Benoit de Castres,” in Les moines noirs (XIIIe–XIVe siècles). Cahiers de Fanjeaux 19 (1984), pp. 153–192, at pp. 154–160.

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Castres, dating respectively from the early twelfth and early thirteenth centuries. The engraving of Castres’ first seal probably preceded the Albigensian crusade while that of the second seal occurred well after the end of the crusade. The fate of St Vincent’s basilica and his relics was turbulent during the Crusade and its aftermath, for the victorious Northern French knights seized both the relics and control of the basilica. On the seals of Castres, however, the changing allegiances of the saint’s repository were ignored, underscoring the importance of the continuing and potent presence of the saint in its urban setting. Both seals were double-sided, bearing on the obverse an architectural motif and, on the reverse, the image of St Vincent. In both cases, the saint is explicitly identified by the legend: ‘Seal of St Vincent of Castres’ on the first seal; ‘Image of the body of St Vincent’ on the second seal.37 The iconography of the saint on the later seal shows him wearing a hat and a tight fitting tunic, emerging from a reliquary and holding a processional cross. This representation is unique in the known iconographic repertoire of the saint,38 and may well record some actual aspects of the local cult such as the reliquary itself, or processional banners (Fig. 30). In the Languedoc towns of Pamiers (Ariège) and Saint-AntoninNoble Val (Tarn-et-Garonne), city seals played a role in substantiating local hagiographical tenets. These seals are also two-sided, and both depict on their reverses a ship, guided by two eagles, in which can be seen the head and arm of a saint (Fig. 30).39 The saint is Antonin, and the seals display an episode of his life, a fact made eminently clear by their legends which refer to the ‘passion of St Antonin’ (signum passio sancti antonini). According to a tradition, the veracity of which has now been convincingly disproved by modern scholarship but which

37 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, nos. 186 and 186 bis, p. 167: first seal (early thirteenth-century); the legend on the obverse reads: [. . . c]omunie. ville. castre(n)sis; on the reverse: s. beati. vincencii. d(e) cast(ris); no. 187 and 187 bis, p. 168: second seal (1303); the legend on the obverse reads: +. Sigillum. un[iversitati]s. burgi. castren(sis).; on the reverse: +. ymago. corporis. [. . . vi]ncentii. On the effects of the Albigensian crusade on Castres, see Biget, “Une abbaye urbaine,” pp. 162–165. 38 Germain Demay, Le costume au moyen âge d’après les sceaux (Paris, 1880 ; reprint, 1978), pp. 481–482 where the author reviews the depictions of St Vincent on medieval seals; Louis Réau, Iconographie de l’art chrétien, 3 vols. in 6 (Paris, 1955–1959), vol. III/3, pp. 1324–1329. 39 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 513bis (1267), p. 387, and no. 514bis (1303), p. 388.

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had great currency during the Middle Ages, Antonin had converted the Rouergue region to Christianity from his center of operations, Noble Val, returning thereafter to his place of birth, Fredelas (now Pamiers), where he underwent martyrdom. He was beheaded with such brutality that both his arm and his head were cut off; his dismembered body was then thrown into the river. However, a boat guided by two white eagles miraculously gathered the bodily pieces and brought them back to Noble Val where they received proper burial.40 The abbey of St Antonin at Noble Val was founded in the early ninth century in honor of its eponymous martyr. A translatio alleges that in 887 the saint’s relics were transported to Fredelas where another abbey dedicated to St Antonin was built to house them.41 There is substantial evidence that in 960, a count of Carcassonne, Arnaud or his son Roger I, founded the abbey at Fredelas.42 Yet, a Gallic Antonin never actually existed: his extant acta were configured to mimic the life of a Syrian saint, Antonin of Apamea in Syria. In a historical coincidence that deserves further scholarly attention, Roger II, count of Foix, upon his return from the crusade in 1118 named the castle he had built at Fredelas Apamea, after the locus of his Syrian crusading exploits. Thus it was that the relics Roger had brought of the Syrian Antonin came to be taken for those of a legendary local saint, and episodes of the Syrian saint’s martyrdom spiced up the local legend.43 From then on, however, Fredelas changed its name to Pamiers, a fact duly registered by the very first city seal (ca. 1250), the legend of which reads: +sigillum.

40 De S. Antonino Martyre Apameae in Syria, in Acta Santorum Septembris, ed. By Joannes Pinius, Joannes Stiltingus, Joannes Limpenus, and Joannes Veldius (Antwerp, 1746), pp. 340–356. 41 Claude de Vic and Jean Vaissete, Histoire générale du Languedoc, 16 vols. (Toulouse 1868–1905), vol. 2. 2, pp. 337 and 384. 42 Vic and Vaissete, Histoire générale, vol. 3, p. 49. At the death of Roger I (1012), his son Bernard (d. 1034) inherited the territory of Foix, in which was located Fredelas. The comital title first appeared in 1034 with Roger, count of Foix and son of Bernard. 43 For a recent treatment of the complicated hagiography of St Antonin, see Jean-Luc Boudartchouk et al., “L’invention de saint Antonin de Frédelas-Pamiers,” Mémoires de la Société Archéologique du Midi de la France LXIII (2003), pp. 15-58, completed by J.-L. Boudartchouk, “Note complémentaire au sujet de l’origine et de la translation des reliques de saint Antonin de Frédelas-Pamiers,” Bulletin de la Société Archéologique du Midi de la France LXV (2005), http://www.societes-savantes-toulouse.asso.fr/samf/ memoires/t_65/bull20052.htm Réau, Iconographie de l’art chrétien, vol. 3/1, p. 123.

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consulum. apamie (seal of the consuls of Apamié, Fig., 30).44 Pamiers’ urban governemnt was established by a charter of privileges granted in 1233 by both the count of Foix and the abbey of Saint Antonin who, since 1149, had shared the authority over the town.45 This triple layer of governance fueled many disputes between the parties. Yet, the city seals of Pamiers resolutely grounded their consular imagery upon hagiographic lore, so that both the theme of the saint and its artistic treatment are found alike on the consular seal and on the seal of the abbot of Saint-Antonin, Bernard Saussaye.46 Religious subjects on city seals testify to urban strategies in which local sacred patrimony, cult, and liturgical usages were appropriated and asserted, often within the context of a competition with church authorities. Sacred history and local history formed a continuum, a collective memory which connected the multiple communities constitutive of an urban fabric, and town governance relied upon this memory to assert the collective character of the government it sought to extend over the entire city. A hagiographic iconographic program was well suited to advance a strategy which merged the sacred and the civic in a single icon thus calling for the simultaneous veneration of the town and of the holy person. Images on urban seals were dialogic, shuttling between the mundane and the spiritual, even as actual towns saw themselves as spiritual precincts, holding the promise of both material defense and divine protection. Thus, with their appropriation of recognizable religious motifs, city seals went beyond the iconic convention which had earlier characterized seals, namely categorization and stereotypy. Indeed, civic adoption of hagiographic representations transformed the very iconography of hagiography. Whereas early monastic seals had, in their traditional categorizing mode, displayed generic images of their patron saint, routinely endowed with nimbus and palm but otherwise not specifically unidentifiable, city seals display saints with characteristic attributes sufficient to afford immediate recognition. On the seals of Metz, for instance, the scene of Stephen’s stoning presents a level of realism wherein the heads of his assailants are adorned, albeit somewhat anachronistically, with typical medieval

44 45 46

Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 513, p. 386. Vic and Vaissete, Histoire générale du Languedoc, vol. 4, p. 12 and vol. 5, p. 373. Abbot’s seal in Douët d’Arcq, Collection de sceaux, vol. 3, no. 8898, p. 108.

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Judenhüte (Fig. 31).47 Similarly, as we have seen, the Langedoc towns of Castres, Pamiers, and Saint-Antonin used seals bearing particular depictions of famous local saints (Fig. 30).48 Urban Identity and the Historical City In the region of Languedoc, the most important saint was Foy, whose reliquary attracted multitudes of pilgrims to Conques (Aveyron) where it resided. Yet the seal of Conques did not avail itself of the saint’s image; it shows a conca, a basin, with three feet and two handles.49 Conques’ seal presents yet another aspect of the modulation by urban seals of older conventions: the display of canting figures. Towns sought out the opportunity to pun on their seals.50 Thus, to cite one among many examples, the town of Mantes (mint) displays on its seal a branch of mint.51 Punning seals offered more than opportunities for playfulness, for they situate text and image in a reciprocally supportive dialogue. In such a fashion, representation on city seals was fully denotative since not only their texts but also their images could individuate a particular city. Canting figures established an explicit equation between the town and its image. Other urban seals achieved this equation by using legends which were directly descriptive of the monument displayed. On the counter-seal of Soissons (late twelfth century), a belfry is shown and labeled berfridum suessionis (belfry of Soissons, Fig. 32).52 On the

47 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, nos. 408–410, pp. 318–320; Hubert Collin, “Sceaux de l’histoire de Lorraine,” Lotharingia, 1(1988), pp. 3–300, no. 211, p. 214, pp. 210–211; a very realistically engraved head of a Jew appears on the counter-seal of the paraige of Jurue (local sworn municipal association of Metz burghers), no. 207bis, p. 212. On the seal of Toul (Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 679, p. 497), St Stephen is identified as a Jew, wearing the Judenhut within a nimbus. On generic saints depicted on early monastic seals, see Bedos-Rezak, “Du modèle à l’image,” p. 195 note 20 where, additionally, examples of urban seals depicting identifiable saints are given. 48 Supra, notes 37, 39. 49 Bedos-Rezak, Sceaux de villes, no. 223, p. 192. The seal is appended to a document dated 1303. 50 Several examples of canting urban seals are given in Bedos-Rezak, “Du modèle à l’image,” p. 199. 51 Bedos-Rezak, Sceaux de villes, nos. 380–381, p. 300. 52 Bedos-Rezak, Sceaux de villes, no. 667bis, p. 489, and Yves Metman, “Le sceau de la commune de Soissons,” in Bulletin du Club français de la médaille, 18 (1968), pp. 26–29. It is impossible to compare the belfry on the seal with the medieval

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seal of the southern French city of Peyrusse (1243), the legend reads imago castelli de petrucia (image of the castle of Peyrusse), and the field shows a castle perched atop of a rock which bears a considerable resemblance to the actual ruins of the castle.53 Such a case raises the issue of topographical accuracy in sigillographic representation. Some seals were engraved with an image so realistic it even now allows the viewer to identify the town thus represented. Even where an overall panorama is improbable, it nevertheless incorporates specific, genuine, and identifiable elements. Excavations and extant archival sources have confirmed that the central edifice displayed on the city seal of Haguenau (late twelfth-early thirteenth-century) depicts the imperial chapel that was part of the Hohenstaufen palace established in that city.54 On the thirteenth-century seal of the English town of Rochester, the castle represented is easily identified with the Norman fortress built in 1127.55 One may also easily recognize the church tower of StSernin on the seal of Toulouse, the characteristic rounded apse of the church of St Caprais on the seal of Agen, and, on the seal of Moissac, the abbey’s lantern tower with its three blocked arcades which remain visible today.56 In such “urban portraits” with their partial realism, stereotypic and distinctive features coexist, as they also do on city seals featuring descriptive legends, punning images, and religious iconography

monument, which no longer exits. However, the city of Meaux, which adopted Soissons’s charter of privileges and copied its seal as well, had a counter-seal figuring a distinctly different belfry surrounding by the legend secretum communie (‘secret seal of the commune, Bedos[-Rezak] Sceaux de villes, no. 405, p. 315), while Compiègne, which also adopted Soissons’ charter, limited its imitation of the seal to the obverse, using a fleur-de-lis as counter-seal, Bedos[-Rezak] Sceaux de villes, no. 218 and 218bis, pp. 187–188; see note 65 below. 53 Bedos[-Rezak] Sceaux de villes, no. 540bis, p. 407; Martin de Framond, Sceaux rouergats du Moyen Âge. Etude et corpus (Rodez, 1982), gives at p. 56 the pictures of Peyrusse’s seal and of the remnants of the medieval castle, thus illuminating the extent to which the seal engraver sought to captured specific features of Peyrusse’s castle. 54 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 310, p. 253; Cherry, “Imago Castelli,” p. 86. 55 Gale Pedrick, Borough Seals of the Gothic Period (London, 1904), pp. 106–107, and pl. IX, no. 17; Cherry, “Imago Castelli,” pp. 85–86. 56 Toulouse (1214–1303): Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, nos. 685–688, pp. 502–504; Laurent Macé, « Un clocher, un donjon et l’agneau pascal, » in Toulouse, une métropole méridionale : vingt siècles de vie urbaine, 2 vols., ed. Bernadette Suau, Jean-Pierre Amalric, Jean-Marc Olivier (Toulouse, 2009), vol. 1, pp. 241–255 ; Agen (thirteenthcentury seal): Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 9, pp. 34–35. Yves Metman, “Le sceau de la république d’Agen,” in Bulletin du Club français de la médaille 29 (1970), pp. 62–67, at p. 62; Moissac (1243): Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 426, p. 330.

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directly derived from local culture. Simultaneously generic and specific, the representation of a town on its seal is a narrative of a city inscribed in actuality rather than in eternity. The dimension of time has been altered, it no longer being oriented toward the infinite, as it was in city ideograms. The civic seal constructs urban identity by identifying the town with a chronology which is its own. Both history and spatiality now entered the seal’s referential economy. The Individuality of Human Collectives Yet another marker of radical evolution is the manner in which the human figure was depicted on city seals. By human representation, the town laid claim to personality and crossed the line into personhood. One of the most significant aspects of urban seal inscriptions is their emphasis on human groupings. Only very rarely does the wording focus exclusively on the city itself, as in sigillum civitatis hagenowie (seal of the city of Haguenau).57 Although legends regularly indicate the perceived nature of the town, whether it is a burgus, an oppidum, a castrum, a communia, an universitas, or a consilium, such terms are placed secondarily, after mention of officiating individuals or groups: mayor (major), consuls (consules), aldermen (scabini), jurors (jurati), peers (pares).58 Paralleling these legends is the pervasive presence of human figures on city seals. Burgers, mayors, aldermen clearly constitute the principal motif of urban seal imagery (Fig. 32). The embodied person squarely joins the city seal to the ambient semiotic principle of representation as personification. In this instance too, however, city seals were innovative. Firstly, from the very beginning of their appearance, city seals presented groups of individual townspeople,59 57

Supra, note 54. Systematic studies of urban seal legends are found in Drös and Jakobs, “Die Zeichen einer neuen Klasse,” pp. 151–157; Brigitte Bedos-Rezak, “Les types des plus anciens sceaux des communautés urbaines du nord de la France,” in Les chartes et le mouvement communal : colloque régional (oct. 1980), organisé en commémoration du 9e centenaire de la Commune de Saint-Quentin (St-Quentin, 1982), pp. 39–50, at pp. 43–46; Bedos-Rezak, “Towns and Seals,” pp. 43–44. 59 Collin, “Sceaux de l’histoire de Lorraine,”: Beaumont-en-Argonne (thirteenth century), no. 196, p. 202–203. Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes: Amiens (1152), no. 27, p. 48; Avignon (1192), no. 67, p. 80; Bretenoux (1309), no. 145, p. 139; Chauny (1303), no. 205, p. 178; Compiègne (1183), no. 218, p. 187; Dijon (1234), no. 244, p. 206; Douai (1207), no. 248, p. 210; Doullens (1321), nos. 251bis-252bis, pp. 215–216; Embrun (1255), no. 260, p. 222; 58

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whereas, on ecclesiastical seals, a community of monks or of canons was generally represented by, subsumed within, the solitary figure of an abbot or of a patron saint.60 Secondly, urban figures on city seals appear clad in a wide variety of costumes, including working clothes, occupied with mundane activities such as: whale hunting, fishing, sailing, guarding the city, discussing city affairs, blowing trumpets.61 Even faces came to be depicted with distinctive features (Fig. 32). Particularizing legends, such as we encountered on architectural seals, are also to be found identifying human figures. Thus, within the field of the seal of Saint-Flour (Cantal), an inscription stands directly over three seated figures in conversation, and reads: consilium s’(ancti) flori (council of Saint-Flour).62 Descriptions of the personages represented on the seal of Salins-les-Bains (Jura) also appear directly in the field: above the seated figure is the world p(re)posit(us) (provost), while to the groups of people standing and flanking him is attached the term

Figeac (twelfth century), no. 280, p. 234; Fismes (1308), no. 282, p. 237; Fontainesur-Somme (thirteenth century), no. 284 p. 239; Isle-sur-la-Sorgue (1227), no. 324bis, p. 262; Maurs (1308), no. 403, p. 314; Meaux (1308), no. 404, p. 314; Meulan (1195), no. 413, pp. 322–323; Nimes (1303), nos. 503–504, pp. 379–380; Peyrusse (1243), no. 540, p. 407; Rodez (1386), no. 586, p. 439; Saint-Flour (1308), no. 612, p. 455; SaintOmer (1199), nos. 628–629, pp. 463–464; Salins-les-Bains (1259), no. 647, p. 478; Soissons (1228), no. 667, p. 489; Troyes (1232), no. 695, p. 509; Wailly (1260), no. 731, p. 528. 60 In deference to the Statute of Carlisle (1307) and its requirement that religious orders were to have a communal seal rather than a seal kept in the abbot’s custody, some Cistercian monasteries adopted new seals on which the traditional figure of the abbot, or of the Virgin, was now accompanied by surrounding groups of monks. This iconography, in conformity with the Satute, emphasized the newly empowered communal basis for the seal’s authority, T.S. Heslop, “Cistercian Seals in England and Wales,” in Cistercian Art and Architecture in the British Isles, ed. Christopher Norton and David Park (Cambridge, 1986), pp. 266–283, at pp. 273–277, plate 153 sq. French Cistercian monasteries responded to Pope Benedict XII’s Constitution (1335), which instituted a conventual seal for all houses of the Order, enjoining that the new matrices be round and carry an image of the Virgin Mary (Heslop, “Cistercian Seals,” p. 278). In so doing, they ultimately introduced a new iconographic theme on their seals, the Virgin protectrix of the Order, whose numerous members kneel under her outstretched mantle, Pierre Bony, “An Introduction to the Study of Cistercian Seals. The Virgin as Mediatrix, then Protectrix on the Seals of Cistercian Abbeys,” in Studies in Cistercian Art and Architecture, vol. 3, ed. Meredith Parsons Lillich (Kalamazoo, 1987; Cistercian Studies Series 89), pp. 201–240; Bony’s otherwise excellent stylistic and thematic analysis of Cistercian seals is somewhat weakened by the fact that, unlike Heslop, he does not take into account the vagaries of seal legislation. 61 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes: Whale hunting on the seal of Biarritz (1351), no. 126, p. 124; for all aspects of sailing activities on seals, see Herbert Ewe, Schiffe auf Siegeln (Rostock, 1972). 62 Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 61, p. 455.

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ecvini (aldermen).63 On the city seal of Doullens (Somme), the legend reads: hic sunt scabini bisterni terque bini, and the twelve aldermen are there.64 As with the architectural motif, a formulaic rendering has now been particularized by elements of verism. From this examination of the broad iconographic range of city seals, it appears that no dominant model, no single representational system, regulated the composition of urban seal imagery. Representation had moved from being classifying to being increasingly individualizing. The city seal thus constitutes a kind of “portrait” to the extent that it tends not to generalize its referent. This is the first innovation introduced by urban seals. A second innovation followed from the first one. The city seal particularized its referent by means of a dual modality: an integrated correspondence between image and text (of the legend), and an iconographic motif unique to and appropriate for each town. Having emerged as images of distinction and differentiation, city seals did not establish resemblance between separate towns as if they were members of a single conceptual or social category.65 With city seals, referentiality targets a particular town identified as such through a singular representational formula. As the iconographic representation itself moved from symbolism toward verism, it became more descriptive. We have seen how monuments and persons acquired realistic features, which is the third innovation ushered in by city seals. In a fourth innovation, city seals came to personify the community in its plurality. Urban personality came to be construed as a collective of individuals who interrelate but are not subsumed by their membership within the urban web. What conclusions may be drawn from the observation that city seals diverged significantly from the representational and referential modes of contemporary personal seals?

63

Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 647, p. 478. Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, no. 251–252bis, pp. 214–216. 65 The charter of liberties, granted to the commune of Soissons in 1136 by King Louis VII, had provided the model for the charters given to Compiègne and Meaux; all three cities used a same type of seal image, the mayor standing in arms and surrounded by burghers and aldermen (supra, note 52), as if to underscore their historical kinship. This behavior seems, however, to have been rather exceptional: Bedos[-Rezak], Sceaux de villes, pp. 14–16. 64

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With a composition that was particular, and often in close relationship to the specific history and the physical appearance of its owner, a city seal dramatically signaled that each town was a unique, individual, phenomenon. By means of its seal, the town was identified through that which distinguished it from others, in striking contrast to personal seals which functioned as icons of a shared status. In eschewing the articulation of a normative taxonomy, city seals defined the town as an entity that could not be reduced to the norms of social convention. Thus, urban identity was apparently concerned with individuality in several senses. Whereas personal seals embodied and imaged the generic essence of their owners, city seals captured the distinction of their owners, insisting upon a destiny that was particular rather than ontological. Whereas identity on the personal seals of high-ranking churchmen and of nobles was founded upon sameness, identity on city seals became a tool by which to establish the singularity of a subject, by which to render that subject discernable from others. Therein resides the import of the city seal, which introduced individuality by individualizing human collectives, challenging the existing pattern whereby the individual person was identified through categorization. The city seal displays the extent to which, in a world where to be was normatively perceived as being alike, individuality was akin to otherness, to alterity. It was as other that the city introduced a newer form of personal identity. It was in a later search for an individuality that was not alterity that individual persons increasingly came to abandon sealing for that other corporal sign, the signature.

CONCLUSION Although seals have traditionally occupied only a limited corner of medieval scholarship, an argument has been advanced in this book that seals, as imprinted and replicated images, were central to life and thought in the high Middle Ages. The present exploration of the dialectic between the diffusion of seal usage and the deployment of seal metaphors creates an opportunity to consider sealing practice from the perspective of those who actually sealed and promoted sealing. The seal served simultaneously as an object affixed to a charter and as a conceptual tool, connecting points on the medieval map of human experience. Thus the history of sealing practice is also the history of a sustained encounter between medieval western culture and both media and mediate communication. As written words, objects, and images invaded social space and claimed their place in the theater of social exchange, a re-alignment of definition and of self-perception occurred. This established the nexus linking persons and the objects that could stand for what they represented, that indeed mobilized the person represented as a locus of accountability. All elements composing this representational module mutually affected each other, with the result that their definitions varied, testing or promoting the specific theories of signification that were then mustered within theological, philosophical, and linguistic debates. The seal, an image operative both in practice and theory, emerged as a device that could, and did, shuttle up and down the intellectual and material structures of signification, distributing meaning across the spectrum of human experience in a manner at once supportive and constitutive. The twelfth-century seal was the form assumed in the course of critical dialogues between theory and social process, between the material world and its perceived structure of intelligibility. Put another way, seals and the imprinting process trafficked in world disclosure. Use of and engagement with seals led medieval men and women into an expanding web of relationships, with their own selves, with each other, with the material world, and with the divine. The material and procedural quality of seals as imprints was a crucial mediator of human understanding and of pragmatic action, bringing into focus new subjects and new possibilities, among these the concept of individuality.

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It perhaps seems counter-intuitive that the newly devised and circulated signs of identity did not foster individual expression. It is, however, important not to confuse a lack of individual expression with an absence of individuality. The individual was very much at the heart of a socio-ethical system which rested upon individual emulation of proper models, and insisted upon individual accountability with respect to laws both human and divine. The central role of modeling in individuation had the effect of devaluating distinctive traits. For such were interpreted as forms of resistance to, even rejection of appropriate patterns of being. Far from being absent, individuality was recognized, but as a negative marker. It was the importance of presence for personal accountability that opened a gap between individuality and its expression. Actual presence mobilizes and exhibits individual characteristics, permitting immediate recognition and identification. When presence is mediated by signs of identity, however, the individuals themselves are no longer the sine qua non of recognition by others, even as their signs are circulated within contexts with no direct knowledge of their persons. Thus the locus of identification shifts from the individual to his or her sign, a sign that needs to assume features capable of engendering recognition beyond the context of its immediate occurrence. In such a situation, individuality is a poor signifier precisely because it does not survive de-contextualization, nor does it permit abstraction. In displaying stereotypical figures seals addressed the necessity that signs be, at some level, general enough to be employed in multiple contexts. On twelfth-century seals, however, the diluting effect of representation was counteracted by the logic of the imprint; individuals effected representation by inferring the presence of the body. Seals were thus produced as avatars of their users, an operation predicated upon the imprinting process and its attendant elements of haptic modeling from an originator. Contact, an indubitable proof of original presence, coexisted with visuality and its generalizing template of sameness. By the early thirteenth century the imprinting process and its cultural baggage had formed a field of practice and of interpretation, which supported a phenomenological perception of representation as presence, and of likeness as both ontological programming and a category of social organization. There is evidence, though, that by 1200 seals were establishing new sorts of links between social domains and the material. Once again, it was an operative mechanism of the seals themselves that suggested to

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their patrons new modes of usage and conceptualization. The replication of identical images came to be registered as a paradigm. Attitudes toward seals changed and became grounded in expectations which derived from the serial logic of the replica. As replication came into play in the thirteenth century, seals were also entering the context of legal concerns about the authority and the authenticity of the written word. We have here, it seems, evidence that the twelfth-century seal had embodied properties in excess of those primarily mobilized by schoolmen and seal owners. Faced with a change linked to seals’ multiplicity of operative modes, impression and replication, it seemed risky to this author to insist upon a sequential narrative and pattern of causality that would locate the forces for change solely within the cognitive and social conditions surrounding seal usage. It has rather been most rewarding to re-assess the role of this object, of the seal, as a promoter itself of change, as a dynamic vector of disclosure within, and generator of the world it inhabits.

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INDEX Abelard, see Peter Accountability, see Charters, Individual, Seals Adelaide of Maurienne, queen of France, 92 Adele of Champagne, queen of France, xvi, 93, pl. XVII Administration, 43 Aimery le Viaudre of Issy, xiv, pl. XI Alan, duke of Brittany, xv, pl. XII Alan of Lille, 183, 184, 187, 190, 191 Alaric II, king of the Visigoths, 76 Alberic of Reims, 118, 119, 124, 158 Alienor of Braines, xi, xiv, pl. I, VIII, see Robert of Braines Amiens, Bishops of, 50, 51, 52, 90, 95, 99, 106, 119, 132; see Guy, Thierry Chancellors of, 119 City, 249 Anaclet II, Pope and anti-Pope, 211, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229 Anjou, 21, 23 Counts of, see Fulk Rechin, Geoffrey Anne of Kiev, queen of France, xii, pl. III Anselm of Bec, archbishop of Canterbury, 118, 120, 124, 165, 166, 167, 185 Ansel of L’Isle-Adam, xii, pl. II Anselm of Laon, 3, 98, 105, 118, 119, 126, 154, 158, 184, 187, 196, 197, 215 Anti-semitism, 217, 223, 224, 225, see Insults Archetype, 37, 59, 142, 147, 154–155, 172, 173, 176, 180, 188, 192, 194, 225, 226, 229, see Exemplar, Model, Original, Prototype Archives, medieval, 11, 12, 15, 16, 20, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 53, 95, 98–99 Arenga, see Diplomatic discoursePreambles Aristotle, 55, 141, 179 Arnulf, archdeacon of Sées, bishop of Lisieux, 109, 210, 211, 212, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230

Arras, Bishop of, see Lambert Ars dictaminis, 209, 212, 235, see Aurea Gemma, Konrad of Mure Augustine, bishop of Hippo, 143, 163, 175, 194, 240, 243 Doctrine of image, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 186, 193 Sign Theory, 3, 5, 63, 106, 121–123, 124, 125, 126, 127, 147, 163, 177 Authentication, 27, 28, 30, 31, 33, 156, 202, 204 Authenticity, 4, 12, 15–16, 27, 31, 32, 34, 35, 37, 38, 83, 98, 109, 131, 157, 201, 203, 205, 255 Aurea Gemma, 209, 235, 236 Authenticum, 38 Authority, 31, 32–33, 38, 43, 50, 53, 54, 55, 57, 60, 75, 88, 89, 109, 110, 120, 131, 135, 137, 139, 156, 157, 199, 201, 203, 205, 221, 246, 255 Episcopal, 96, 98, 101, 107, 141 Royal, 75, 76, 81, 88, 89, 93, 94 Baldwin of Canterbury, see Baldwin of Ford Baldwin, count of Flanders, 91 Baldwin of Ford, 191 Baldwin, count of Hainaut, xviii, pl. XXI Barthélémy of Joux, bishop of Laon, 154, 197 Beauvais Bishop, see Peter of Dammartin City, xxii, 239, 240, pl. XXVII Beaumont-sur-Oise Counts and Countess, see Eleanor of Vermandois, John, Matthew I, Matthew II, Matthew III Members of the comital family, see Philip Bec, abbey, Abbots, see Anselm, Lanfranc Berengar of Tours, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 117, 118, 119, 125, 126, 158 Bernard of Chartres, 118, 119 Bernard, abbot of Clairvaux, 109, 110, 119, 149, 190, 211, 216, 217, 219, 220, 223 Bertrada of Montfort, countess of Anjou, queen of France, 92

288

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Blois, 23 Bonneval Abbot, see Ernald Bruno of Reims, 105, 119, 120, 126 Brittany Dukes, 83, 90, 91; see Alan Bulls, Imperial, 241 Papal, 42, 165, 166 Burgundy Dukes, see Odo Cambrai, bishops of, 95, 101, 105, 119, 120, 132, 154, see Gerard City, 16, 239 Canterbury Archbishops, see Anselm of Bec, Lanfranc of Bec, Richard Cartularies, xv, 15, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 51, 53, 54, 90, 91, 132, 201, pl. XIII Castres, xxiii, 243, 244, 247, pl. XXX Cathedral schools, see Schools and schoolmen Châlons-sur-Marne Bishop, see William of Champeaux Chambly, see Saint-Aubin, priory Champagne, 2 Chancellors, 3, 23, 24, 98, 103, 120, 190, 195, see Anselm of Laon, Bruno of Reims, Gilbert of Poitiers, Peter Comestor, Peter of Blois, Peter Lombard, Praepositanus of Cremona, Ralph of Laon Chancery, 15, 115, 116, 117, 118, 131, 140, 150, 154, 158, 177 Imperial, 58, 76, 85 Royal, 30, 75, 76, 78, 82, 83, 85, 86, 87, 90, 96 Scholars, 98, 103, 105, 106, 117, 119–120, 127, 147 Seigniorial, 23–24 See Schools and schoolmen, Chancellors, Writing Bureaus Charlemagne, 58, 79, 85 Charles the Bald, 79, 80, 81, 85, 87, 101, 238 Charters, xvi, xix, 9–14, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 54, 55, 76, 85, 88, 95, 97, 132, 135, 136, 137, 152, 196, pl. XVIII, XIX Affinities with Holy Scripture, 99, 133, 134 And material culture, 14, 31–32, 34, 35, 36, 37, 40, 51, 52, 60, 93, 99, 107

And personal accountability, 87, 131 Aristocratic, 23, 42, 46, 59, 83-84, 88, 94, 110, 132–133, 140, 150, 153, 154 As objects, 14, 17, 20, 22, 43, 50–52, 99, 135, 137 As proofs, 21, 22, 35, 43, 166–167, 214 As sources, 4, 11, 34–36 Authentic, 32 Authors of, 14, 23, 31, 39, 41, 43, 46, 49, 57, 66, 88, 134, 135, 137, 138, 139, 154, 197, 201 Copies of, xv, 15, 32, 37–38, 39, 40, 41, 44, 47, 48, 49, 54, 90, 95, 98, 104, 153, 196, 197; pl. XIII Donors in, 18, 20, 21, 134, 136, 137, 153 Episcopal, 42, 95, 96, 98, 99, 107 Forged, 31 In chronicles, 48 Knifes attached to, 85 Monastic, 44 Of franchises, 48, 243 Original, 16, 32, 37–38, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 53, 54, 59, 90, 95, 100, 104, 106, 132, 196, 197, 200 Papal, see Bulls Placed upon altars, 19, 43, 52, 85, 133-134, 196 Private or public, 88, 89, 92 Read aloud, 19 Royal, see Diplomas Symbolic objects attached to, 58, 88, 137 Subscriptions in, 76 Touched, 19 Unsealed, 57, 83, 84 Validation, 26, 53, 85, 131 Witnesses in, xv, xvi, 15, 18, 20–21, 22, 27, 31, 38, 47, 51, 56, 87–89, 126, 134–145, 137–138, 152, 167, 196, 203, pl. XII, XVI See Archives-medieval, Chirographs, Cartularies, Crosses-signatory, Diplomatic discourse, Documentary practices, Laudation parentum, Pancartes, Vidimus Chartres Episcopal chancellors, see Bernard, Gilbert of Poitiers Châtelet, xix, pl. XXIII, see Hugh Aubriot

index Childebert III, king of France, xv, pl. XIV Childeric, king of the Franks, 76 Chirographs, xii, xvii, xix, 15–16, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 49, 52, 54, pl. II, XIX, XXIV Sealed, xii, xvii, xix, 43, 52, pl. II, XIX, XXIV City, see Towns Clairvaux, abbey Abbots, see Bernard, Garnier of Rochefort Clanchy, M.T., 58 Cluny, abbey, 231 Abbot, see Peter the Venerable Coins As Metaphor, 147 Communication, 2, 11, 22, 62, 97, 109, 253 Media, 67, 71, 98, 110, 165, 172, 253 Medium, 17–18, 28, 93, 111, 123, 137, 141, 193, 238 Non-verbal, 24 Oral, 19, 24, 45, 59, 79, 95, 98, 134, 135, 136, 166, 167 Visual, 135, 161, 164, 165, 167, 170, 181, 182, 183 Written, 24, 76, 79, 86, 89, 93, 97, 109, 110, 135, 136, 161, 164, 165, 166, 167 Conques, 247 Copy, 32, 37, 38, 49, 53, 54, 81, 203, 226, 229, 232, see Charters-copies, Image, Replica, Repetition Counter-seals, xviii, xix–xx, xxix, pl. XX, XXIV, XXV, XXXII Crosses, signatory, xii, xv, xvi, 18–19, 99, 133, 138, 139, 153, 196, pl. III, XII, XVI Decretals, 32, 166 Diplomas, royal, xii, xv, 15, 58, 76, 78, 85, 87, 88, 92, 93, 94, 97, pl. III, XV And material culture, 93 Knife attached to, 85 Monogram in, 77, 78–79, 81, 85, 196 ‘Privatization’ of, 89 Sealing and validating clauses, 78–79, 81, 83, 87, 154 Signa in, 87, 88 Signatory crosses in, 87 Symbolic objects attached to, 85, 87 Subscriptions in, 77

289

Unsealed, 85, 87–88 Witness-lists in, 87, 88, 89 Diplomatics, 4, 5, 10–13, 18, 34, 35, 37–38 Diplomatic discourse, 14, 17, 18, 32, 51, 52, 53, 87, 99, 134, 172, 201, 234 Ego in, 134, 135, 139, 152, 156 Formularies, 50 Liturgical vocabulary in, 87, 99, 106, 138, 196 Preambles, 49, 50, 51–52, 87, 99, 133 Final clauses, 19, 23, 51–52, 79, 87, 90–91, 101, 106, 133, 134, 138, 139, 151, 153, 197, 199, 200, 221, 234 Sealing clauses, 78, 81, 101, 139, 151, 153, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 221, 234 Testimonial clauses, xv, pl. XIII Validating clauses, 31, 106, 139, 153, 154, 196, 198, 199 Disputes, 22, 44, 99, 133, 135–136, 158, 213, 246 Over land, 14, 20–22, 136 Over tolls, xii, pl. II Over ideas, 66, 119, 123, 124, 125, 126, 129, 130, 215 Over investiture, 113, see Eucharistic controversy, Insults, Sign theory Documentary practices, 10–11, 13-16, 18, 20 And the feudal revolution, 18 Of the lay nobility, 23, 25, 59 Donations, xi, xiii, 17, 19, 20, 26, 43, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 52, 101, 133, 134, 137, 197, 199–200, pl. I, VI Pro anima, 25–26, 50, 133, 139, see Gifts Economy, 24, 57 Edive of Moucy, xiii Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of France, 93 Eleanor of Vermandois, countess of Beaumont-sur-Oise, xx, 237, pl. XXV Empire Carolingian, see Charlemagne, Charles the Bald, Louis the Pious England Kings, see Henry I, William the Conqueror Queens, see Matilda I, Matilda II Enguerrand, bishop of Laon, xix, 197, pl. XXII Ernald, abbot of Bonneval, 183

290

index

Eucharist, as sign, 4, 6, 66, 102–103, 120, 151, 170, 177, 195 Eucharistic controversy, 30, 96, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 119, 126, 127, 128, 141, see Berengar of Tours Exemplar, 38, 41, 42, 44, 218, 229, see Archetype, Charters-Original, Model, Original Flanders, 24 Counts and Countesses, see Baldwin, Robert II, Philip of Alsace, Matilda of Portugal Forgery, 11, 12, 31, see Charters-Forged, Seals Formularies, see Diplomatic Discourse France Kings, see Childebert III, Childeric, Henry I, Hugh Capet, Louis VI, Louis VII, Odo, Pippin the Short, Philip I, Philip II Augustus, Robert I, Robert II, Rudolph, Thierry III Queens, see Adelaide of Maurienne, Adele of Champagne, Anne of Kiev, Bertrada of Montfort, Eleanor of Aquitaine Fulda, abbey Abbot, see Rabanus Maurus Fulk Rechin, count of Anjou, 91, 92 Garnier of Rocheford, abbot of Clairvaux and bishop of Langres, 184 Gems, Antique, xvi, 100, 101, pl. XV Medieval, 81, 100 Geoffrey II, count of Anjou, 19 Gerald of Wales, 9 Gerard, bishop of Cambrai, 158, 168, 169 Gerard of Saint-Aubert, xviii, pl. XXI Gerhoh of Reichersberg, 149, 183, 189 Gifts, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24–25, 26, 80, 133, 134, 136, 137, 154, see Donations Gilbert de Hoiland, 186 Gilbert of Poitiers, 118, 119, 127, see Chartres Gilbert de la Porrée, see Gilbert of Poitiers Girard, bishop of Angoulême, 211, 214, 215, 216, 217, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230 Gregory the Great, pope, 161, 162, 164, 165, 168, 170, 189

Gregory IX, pope, 32 Guilaume Durand, bishop of Mende, 164, 165, 167 Guy, bishop of Amiens, 105, 106 Guy, count of Ponthieu, 50, 51, 91, 133, 154, 155 Hainaut Counts, see Baldwin Hariulf of Saint-Riquier, 48 Henry, abbot of Saint-Denis, xvii, xix, xx, pl. XIX, XXIV Henry I, king of England, 165, 219, 237 Henry I, king of France, xii, 101 Heraldry, 14, 67, 154, 237 And kinship, 30, 154, 237 Herimann of Reims, 104, 105, 119, 126 Hervé de Bourg-Dieu, 183, 186 Homblières, see Notre-dame of Hugh Aubriot, prévôt of Paris, xix, pl. XXIII Hugh Capet, king of France, 101 Hugh, abbot of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, xiv, pl. X Hugh of Saint-Victor, 118, 126, 147, 149–150, 175, 181, 182, 183, 193, 194 Humbert II, dauphin of Viennois, xxii, pl. XXIX Identity, 6, 28–29, 43, 59, 60, 111, 112, 113, 120, 141, 147, 155, 156, 159, 171, 173, 176, 177, 205, 209, 227, 229, 232, 233, 249, 252 Authorial, 98–99, 109, 110 Collective, 6, 16, 29, 30, 252 Ontological, 6, 144, 148–149, 173, 176 Personal, 6, 29, 30, 98, 101, 107, 110, 111, 112, 138, 139, 140, 141, 152–153, 155, 235, 252 Signs of, 112, 120, 138, 141, 157, 158, 159, 232, 254 See Likeness, Sameness Ile-de-France, 20 Image, 3, 6, 14, 29, 101, 120, 125, 127, 141, 142, 150, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 171, 172, 202, 205, 221, 222, 230, 231, 234, 238 Achiropoietic, 195 And identity, 49, 101, 141, 144–146, 177 And the self, 30 And signifying modes, 101, 106, 128, 165, 173, 176, 180, 195, 238, 239

index And text, 28–29 As agent, 162, 163, 164, 165, 167, 168, 170, 171 As copy, 125, 173, 179 As imprint, see Imprint As mirror, see Mirror As replica, see Replica In anthropological theology, 4, 6, 127, 147, 148, 149, 171, 172, 174, 175, 176, 177, 225–226, 229 In medieval sign theory, 1, 6, 106, 125, 127, 128, 161, 162, 163, 170, 171, 172, 176, 177, 178, 180, 191 Miraculous, 195, see Augustinedoctrine of image, Communication, Replica, Wax Imago, see Image Imprint, 3, 6, 28, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 155–156, 169, 170, 171, 173, 179, 186, 187, 188, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 197–198, 199, 202, 204, 205, 225, 226, 228, 231, 232, 234, 253, 253 Agency of, 186, 188, 192, 195, 254 And graphic consistency, 31, 205 And signifying modes, 173, 174, 187, 193, 200, 204, 226, 231, 235 Individual, Individuality, Individuation, 2, 6, 27, 31, 79–80, 112, 129, 134, 135, 136, 137, 147, 153, 155, 156, 157, 218, 225, 230, 232, 233, 235, 236, 237, 238, 247, 251, 252, 253, 254 And accountability, 55, 87, 110, 131, 138, 158, 177, 253, 254, see Personhood, Self Innocent II, Pope, 211, 213, 217–218, 219, 220, 224, 225, 228, 229, 230 Innocent III, Pope, 32 Insults, 209, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226–227, 228, 229, 230, see Disputes Ivo of Nesles, count of Soissons, 140 John, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise, xvii, xxi, pl. XIX, XXVI John, count of Ponthieu, 47, 50, 51, 52, 154, 155 John of Salisbury, 119, 167, 181, 187 Joscelin, bishop of Soissons, 140 Kisses, 51 Konrad of Mure, 203–204

291

Lambert, bishop of Arras, 97, 98 Land, xiv, 14, 20, 21, 22, 24–25, 26, 35, 41, 43, 44, 49, 50, 51, 59, 80, 133, 135, 136, 138, 153, 154, pl. XI, see Donations, Gifts Lanfranc of Bec, archbishop of Canterbury, xv, 118, 120, 125, pl. XII Langres, Bishop of, 90, 101, 104, 106, see Garnier of Rochefort Laon Bishops, see Barthélémy of Joux, Enguerrand School, 3, 147, 148, 192, 196; see Anselm, Ralph Laudatio Parentum, 18, 196, see Charters—witnesses Law, 4, 11, 12–13, 31, 59, 136–137, 205, 255 Canon Law, 32, 56, 57, 97, 131, 166, 167, 202, 203, 216, 219, 236 Capitularies, 79 Civil law, 166, 167, 203 Droit coutumier, 166, 167 Germanic codes, 79 Roman law, 24, 57, 211, see Charters-Proofs, Decretals Leo IX, pope, 158 Letters, 97, 98, 99, 107, 109 Closure of, 76, 90, 96, 97, see Litterae dimissoriae Levi-Strauss, Claude, 62 Likeness, 6, 101, 111, 112, 113, 120, 125, 128, 141, 142, 144, 146, 147, 150, 155, 159, 170, 173, 174, 176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 184–185, 186, 187, 188, 190, 192, 194, 195, 204, 221, 226, 227, 228, 229, 231, 232, 235, 237, 248, 254, see Sameness Lisieux, Bishop, see Arnulf Literacy, 4, 10–12, 20, 23, 24, 57, 58, 76, see Communication Litterae dimissoriae, 100 Louis the Pious, emperor, xv, pl. XV Louis VI, king of France, 154, 218, 219 As associated king, 91, 92 Louis VII, king of France, xvi Louis, count of Sancerre, xviii, pl. XXI Mabillon, 12, 37, 38, 91 Matilda I, queen of England, 237 Matilda II, queen of England, 237

292

index

Marmande, xxii, 240, pl. XXVIII Marmoutier, abbey, 19, 48, 84 Material culture, 3, 5, 11, 14, 33, 35, 36, 51, 55, 61, 64, 65, 67, 69, 70, 111, 113, 124, 128, 145, 146, 157, 158, 162, 163, 166, 170, 172, 174, 175, 176, 185, 186, 192, 193, 202, 224, 229, 253, 254 And technology, 112, 156, 159, 180, 198, 202, 204, 232 See Charters, Communicationmedium, Image, Imprint, Medium, Seals-materiality Matilda of Portugal, countess of Flanders, xvii–xviii, pl. XX Matthew I, count of Beaumont-sur-Oise, xii Matthew II, count of Beaumont-surOise, xv, xxi, 237, pl. XIII, XXV Matthew III, count of Beaumont-surOise and grand chamberlain of France, xii, xiii, xx–xxi, 237, pl. II, XXV, XXVI Matthew II of Montmorency, constable of France, xiii, pl. VII Media, see Communication Mediation, 14, 22, 63, 111, 113, 122, 123, 135, 170, 182, 183 Medium, 22, 28, 51, 52, 142, 149, 155, 193, 238, see Communication, Material Culture, Seals-materiality Metaphor, see Coins, Seals Memory, 11, 21, 26, 27, 38, 43, 45, 49, 51, 89, 136, 142, 148, 150, 164, 172, 180, 246 Metz, xxiv, 246, 247, pl. XXXI Milton Singer, 60–61 Mirror, 6, 171, 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 192, 193, 194 Model, 1, 3, 5, 6, 17, 34, 50, 59, 69, 77, 88–89, 94, 111, 112, 122, 141, 142, 148, 150, 155, 156, 170, 173, 174, 176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 186, 187, 188, 192, 193, 195, 204, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 238, 240, 251, 254, see Archetype, Exemplar, Original Normandy, 20, 23 Dukes, see Richard II, William the Conqueror Notaries, 33, 58, 166 Notre-Dame of Homblières, abbey, 38, 44–46, 49, 50, 52

Oaths, 51, 135, 138 Objects Agency of, 6 Odo, count of Paris, count and abbot of Saint-Matin, and king of France, 84 Odo, duke of Burgundy, 91 Original, 205 As exemplar, 127, 151, 159, 177, 190, 202, 203, 205, 235 see Archetype, Model Pamiers, xxiii, 244, 245, 246, 247, pl. XXX Pancartes, 38, 54 Paris Abbeys, see Saint-Germain des Prés, Saint-Martin des Champs, Saint-Maur-des-Fossés Bishop, see Peter Lombard Prévôté, see Châtelet, Hugh Aubriot Parmentier, Richard J., 60, 61, 62, 65–66 Payen Presles, of Franconville, xvi, pl. XVIII Peace, 51, 52 of God, 25 Peirce, Charles Sanders, Sign theory, 61, 62, 63, 64, 69 Péronne, see Saint-Furcy Personhood, 2, 4, 6, 96, 110, 111, 112, 120, 129, 130, 141, 146, 147, 156, 171, 172, 209, 232, 235, 236, 249, 251, see Individual, Self, Trinity-persons of Peter Abelard, 118, 125, 126, 127, 129–130, 143, 147, 148, 149, 188–189, 215 Peter of Blois, 190 Peter Comestor, 98 Peter of Dammartin, bishop of Beauvais, xii, pl. IV Peter Lombard, bishop of Paris, xix, 98, 148–149, 164, 181, 188, 194, pl. IX Petrus Pierleone, see Anaclet II Peter the Venerable, abbot of Cluny, 223, 231, 232 Philip of Alsace, count of Flanders, xvii–xviii, pl. XX Philip of Beaumont-sur-Oise, xxi, pl. XXVI Philip I, king of France, xii, xvi, 50, 88, 92, pl. XVI Philip II Augustus, king of France, xiii, 76, 93, pl. VI Picardy, 38, 40

index Pippin the Short, Carolingian ruler, 78 Plato, 55, 66, 142, 172, 173, 174, 175, 179 Ponthieu, 151 Counts of, 38–39, 46, 48, 49, 52, 54; see Guy, John, William Pontoise, see Saint-Martin, abbey; Praepositanus of Cremona, 118–119 Preambles, see Diplomatic discourse Presence, 4, 5–6, 36, 49, 50, 55, 66, 106, 107, 109, 110, 120, 122, 123, 131, 135, 137, 139, 141, 151, 152, 156, 157, 170, 188, 192, 202, 205, 226, 235, 254, see Charters-Authors, Eucharist, Representation Prototype, 106, 173, 185, 186, see Archetype, Exemplar, Model, Original Provins, see Saint-Quiriace Quintilian, 37 Rabanus Maurus, abbot of Fulda, xv, 9, pl. XV Ralph of Laon, 118, 196 Ralph, count of Vermandois, 41, 42, 51 Reims, see Alberic, Bruno, Herimann, Schools and schoolmen Replica, 6, 37, 54, 155, 171, 202, 203, 204, 205, 231, 253, 255 Repetition, 50, 53, 59 As replication, reproduction, 112, see Copy Representation, 2, 4, 5, 6, 14, 17, 29, 63, 65, 68, 69, 75, 94, 98, 99, 106, 107, 109, 110, 112, 120, 123, 141, 152, 156, 157, 158, 171, 172, 176, 177, 180, 188, 202, 229, 232, 235, 238, 239, 241, 243, 247, 249, 251 Signs of, 30, 158, see Presence Resemblance, see Likeness Richard, archbishop of Canterbury, 190 Richard II, duke of Normandy, 19 Richard of Saint-Victor, 130, 131, 181, 190 Robert of Braines, xi, xiv, pl. I, see Alienor of Braines Robert of Melun, 147, 148, 183, 184 Robert I, count and abbot of Saint-Martin, king of France, 84 Robert II, the Pious, king of France, 101 Robert, count of Dreux, xi, see Robert of Braines and Alienor of Braines Robert II, count of Flanders, 92, 139, 237

293

Roscelin of Compiègne, 118, 119, 123, 124, 129, 130, 158, 215 Rudolph, duke of Burgundy and king of France, 84, 85, 87, 101 Rudolph III, king of Burgundy, 85 Rupert of Deutz, 187 Sacraments, 4, see Sign TheorySacramental Theology Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, xxiii, 244, 247, pl. XXX Saint-Aubin of Chambly, priory, xii Saint-Denis, abbey, xvii, xix, pl. XIX, XXIV Abbots, see Henry, Suger As royal writing bureau, 85 Saint-Fursy of Péronne, collegiate church, 38, 39, 40–43, 49, 50 Saint-Germain-des-Prés, abbey, xix, pl. X, see Hugh, abbot Saint-Martin des Champs, priory, 231 Cartulary, xv, pl. XIII Saint-Martin of Pontoise, abbey, xii Saint-Martin of Tours, abbey, 84 As royal writing bureau, 85 Counts and abbots, see Odo, Robert Saint-Maur-des-Fossés, abbey, xii, Saint-Ouen, abbey, 19 Saint-Quiriace of Provins, collegial church, xiii, pl. V Saint-Riquier, abbey, 46, 48, see Hariulf Saint-Victor of Paris, abbey, 117, 118, 147, 149, 212, see Hugh, Richard, Schools and schoolmen-monastic schools, William of Champeaux, Writing bureaus Sameness, 6, 112, 120, 146, 155, 203, 227, 229, 232, 235, 237, 252, 254, see Identity, Likeness Saussure, Ferdinand de, 61, 62 Schools and schoolmen, 115, 116, 117, 119, 123, 131, 142, 158, 175, 177, 180, 195, 214 Monastic schools Bec, 118 Saint-Victor of Paris, 118 Cathedral schools, 98, 103 Laon, 118, 186–187, 188–189 Paris, 118 Reims, 104, 105, 119 Scriptorium, 10, 15, 17, 59, 140, 177 Monastic, 23 see Writing Bureaus

294

index

Seal-legend, 28–29, 80–81, 151, 152, 155, 239, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251 Seal-matrices, xiii, 28, 70, 81, 100, 111–112, 156, 188, 189, 190, 200, 205, 225, 226, 231, pl. V Re-used, 80, 81 Seals, 14, 28–29, 41, 51, 55, 131, 139, 150, 151, 156, 157, 171, 195, 204, 221, 253, 254 Administrative, xix, 93, pl. XXIII And accountability, 55, 110, 131 And bureaucracy, 79, 81 And eucharistic debates, 30 And identity, 28, 29, 55, 71, 110, 113, 120, 141, 232, 235 And materiality, 71, 107, 109, 120, 130, 139, 143-146, 148–149, 151, 157, 173, 174, 189, 193, 225, 229, 235 And sealing, 4, 5, 6, 14, 30, 48, 55, 57, 71, 96, 153, 221 And validation, 27, 28, 30, 31, 54, 55, 56, 57, 77, 79, 81, 230 And world history, 55–56 Aristocratic, p, xi, xii, xiii, xvii, xviii, xx, xxi, xxii, 27, 29, 30, 47, 48; 83, 90, 91, 110, 139 140, 153, 154, 190, 233, 235, 237, 241, 242, 252, pl. I, II, VII, XX, XXI, XXV, XXVI, XXIX Early aristocratic sealers, 83, 90, 91, 92 Armorial, xii, xiv, xvi–xvii, pl. II, XI, XVIII As agents, 28, 59, 71, 111, 151–152, 202, 205, 254 As amulets, 28 As images, 71, 101, 154, 159, 172, 221, 229, 253; see Imprint, Mirror, Replica As metaphors, 3, 4, 55, 111, 119, 130, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 155, 159, 173, 174, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 194, 225, 231, 253 As objects, 27, 28, 29, 58, 71, 111, 139, 151, 157, 253 As replicas, see Replica As signs, 28, 60, 96, 111, 151 Bodily marks in, 151, 153, 200, 201 Borrowed, 153 Casts, xi, xiv, xv, xvi, xvii, xviii, xx, xxii, xxiii, xxiv, 59, pl. VIII, IX,

XIV, XVII, XX, XXI, XXV, XXVI, XXVII, XXVIII, XXIX, XXX, XXXI, XXXII City-, xxii, xxiii–xxiv, 232, 233, 238, 239, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, pl. XXVII, XXVIII, XXX, XXXI, XXXII Iconography, 240, 241, 242, 243, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251 legends, 239, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251 Diffusion, 4, 30, 56, 57, 58, 60, 83, 85, 90–91, 103, 104, 105, 106, 140, 141, 171, 195, 233, 234 Episcopal, xii, xiv, xix, 27, 29, 30, 90, 96, 99, 100, 154, 196, 220, 221, 226, 229, 230, 233, 235, 241, 242, 252, pl. IV, IX, XXII Early episcopal sealers, 90, 103, 104, 105, 106, 196 Forgery, 83, 97, 203 Iconography, 28–29, 100, 101, 111, 153, 154, 155, 221, 222, 240, 241, 242, 243, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251 Imperial, xv–xvi, 58, pl. XV In cartularies, 53 Knightly, xiv, xvi–xvii, pl. XI, XVIII Modes of affixation, 198, 199 Monastic, xiv, xvii, xix, 29, 234, 241, 242, 246, 247, 250; pl. X, XIX, XXIV rings, 76, 78, 90, 96, 97, 100, 113, 173, 190, 220, 221; see Gems Royal, xiii, xv, xvi, 29, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 88, 92, 93, 94, 100, 101, 154, 233, 235, 237 pl. VI, XIV, XVI, XVII Signifying modes, 151–152, 155–156, 159, 191, 229, 231, 239, see Imprint Usage, 3, 92–93, 111, 253, 255 In Carolingian Europe, 78–84, 87 In Merovingian Europe, 76–77 Non documentary, 100 Women, xi, xiv, xvi, xvii, xx, 29, 92, 237; pl. I, VIII, XVII, XX, XXV Early women sealers, 92, 93, see Counter-seals, Gems, Imprint, Seal-legends, Seal-matrices, Sigillum ante susceptum, Sigillum authenticum, Sigillum citationis, Two-sided seals, Wax Self, 112, 131, 134, 147, 187, 192, 202, 227, 230, 253

index And image, 30, 185, 192 As image, 6, 30, 155, 192, 194 As sign, 30, 62–63 Representation of, 98, 99, 154 Semiotics, 4, 59, 60, 110, 170, 171, 172, 199, 239, 242 Sigillum ante susceptum, 92 Sigillum authenticum, 56, 57, 202 Sigillum citationis, 79 Signet-rings, see Seal-rings Signs, see Charters-signa, Eucharist, Eucharistic controversy, Identity, Image, Imprint, Sacraments, Seals, Representation, Self, Sign theory Sign Theory, And semiotic anthropology, 60, 61, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 111, 140 Medieval, 1, 4, 65–67, 101, 106, 107, 111, 113, 114, 126, 127, 128, 170, 171 And anthropological theology, 114, 120, 129, 142, 147 And Investiture controversy, 113 And ‘Nominalism,’ 113, 120, 123, 124, 125, 129 And sacramental theology, 30, 106–107, 114, 115, 120, 122, 126 See Augustine, Levi-Strauss, Parmentier, Saussure, Peirce Soissons, xxiv, 247, pl. XXXII Bishop, see Joscelin Count, see Ivo of Nesles Stigmata, 195 Stereotype, 111, 159, 230, 232, 233, 237, 239, 246, 248, 254 Suger, abbot of Saint-Denis, 175, 176 Tabellions, 33 Thierry, bishop of Amiens, 154 Theodoric the Great, king of the Ostrogoths, 76 Thierry III, king of France, 77

295

Thomas Aquinas, 113, 114, 147, 164 Thomas of Cîteaux, see Thomas of Perseigne Thomas of Perseigne, 194–195 Towns, 6, 15–16, 232, 238, 240, 246, 247, 249, 252 Archives, medieval, 15–16 see Seals-city Trinity, Persons of, 4, 66, 120, 129, 130, 141, 143, 146, 176, 236 Theology of, 114, 66 Two-Sided Seals, xxii, xxiii, 244, pl. XXIX, XXX Validation, see Authentication Vermandois Counts, see Ralph See Eleonor Viennois Dauphins, see Humbert II Vidimus, 40, 47, 48, 54 Viri authentici, 26–27, see Authenticity Wax, 28, 77, 78, 100, 130, 144, 145, 146, 148–149, 150, 151, 155, 173, 188, 189, 190, 198, 200, 201, 231 Bodily imprints in, 151, 200, 201 William of Champeaux, bishop of Châlons-sur-Marne, 98, 118, 120, 124, 126, 215 William the Conqueror, duke of Normandy and king of England, xv, 19, 91, 137, 237, pl. XII William, count of Ponthieu, 50, 153 Witnesses, see Charters, Diplomas Writing Bureaus, 14–15, 23, 98, 110, 117, 140, 195, 204, see Chancellors, Chancery, Saint-Denis-abbey, Saint-Martin of Tours, Saint-Victor of Paris

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