Beatrice of Nazareth
|Died||July 29, 1268|
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church|
Blessed Beatrice of Nazareth or in Dutch Beatrijs van Nazareth (c. 1200 – 1268) was a Flemish Cistercian nun. She was the first prose writer using an early Dutch language, a mystic, and the author of the notable Dutch prose dissertation known as the Seven Ways of Holy Love. She was also the first prioress of the Abbey of Our Lady of Nazareth in Nazareth near Lier in Brabant.
Evidence for her life comes from both her biography, published as Lilia Cistercii, the origins, lives and deeds of the holy virgins of Cîteaux, ed Chrysostomus Henriquez, (Douai 1633), and from her own work TheSeven Ways of Holy Love (Seven Manieren van Heilige Minnen). The latter is a work of early mystic literature that describes seven stages of love, as it is purified and transformed, before it can return to God. It has a simple and balanced prose style,and is associated with the emergence of the 'bridal mysticism' movement.
Beatrice was born in Tienen, Belgium, of a wealthy family. At the age of seven, her mother died, and she was sent to live with the Béguines in nearby Zoutleeuw, where she attended the local school. A little over a year later, her father arranged for her to return home.
Wishing to join a monastery, her father took her to the Cistercian nuns at Bloemendaal/Florival, where at the age of ten, she became an oblate. She continued her education at the monastery in Florival.At the age of fifteen, Beatrice asked to be allowed to enter the novitiate, and was initially refused due to her young age and delicate health. However, the following year she was admitted as a novice.
Later, in 1236, she was sent to commence the new foundation at Nazareth, a hamlet near Lier, Belgium. She practised very severe austerities, wearing a girdle of thorns and compressing her body with cords. In her visions, Jesus is said to have appeared to her and to have pierced her heart with a fiery dart. Her devotion to the Eucharist resulted in bleeding and physical collapse.
She died in 1268 and was buried at the convent of Nazareth. Legend says that after Nazareth was abandoned during a time of disturbance, the body of Beatrice was translated by angels to the city of Lier.
She is known as Blessed within the Roman Catholic church. Her feast day is 29 July.
Nazareth is a historic Biblical city in the Holy Land, childhood home of Jesus Christ.
This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in the 13th century.
Mechthildof Magdeburg, a Beguine, was a Christian medieval mystic, whose book Das fließende Licht der Gottheit described her visions of God. She was the first mystic to write in German, as she did not know how to write in Latin.
Beatrix is a given name, most likely derived from Viatrix, a feminine form of the Late Latin name Viator which meant "voyager, traveller" and later influenced in spelling by association with the Latin word beatus or "blessed". It is pronounced in British English and the same or in North American English. Another North American English pronunciation however approximates that of most other languages: BAY-ə-triks, as shown by US dictionary entries for the former queen of the Netherlands.
Beatrice is a name derived from the French name Béatrice, which came from the Latin Beatrix, which means "she who makes happy".
Dutch-language literature comprises all writings of literary merit written through the ages in the Dutch language, a language which currently has around 23 million native speakers. Dutch-language literature is the produce of Netherlands, Belgium, Suriname, the Netherlands Antilles and of formerly Dutch-speaking regions, such as French Flanders, South Africa, and Indonesia. The Dutch East Indies, as Indonesia was called under Dutch colonization, spawned a separate subsection in Dutch-language literature. Conversely, Dutch-language literature sometimes was and is produced by people originally from abroad who came to live in Dutch-speaking regions, such as Anne Frank and Kader Abdolah. In its earliest stages, Dutch-language literature is defined as those pieces of literary merit written in one of the Dutch dialects of the Low Countries. Before the 17th century, there was no unified standard language; the dialects that are considered Dutch evolved from Old Frankish. A separate Afrikaans literature started to emerge during the 19th century, and it shares the same literary roots as contemporary Dutch, as Afrikaans evolved from 17th-century Dutch. The term Dutch literature may either indicate in a narrow sense literature from the Netherlands, or alteratively Dutch-language literature.
The Blessed John van Ruysbroeck was an Augustinian canon and one of the most important of the Flemish mystics. Some of his main literary works include The Kingdom of the Divine Lovers, The Twelve Beguines, The Spiritual Espousals, A Mirror of Eternal Blessedness, The Little Book of Enlightenment, and The Sparkling Stone. Some of his letters also survive, as well as several short sayings. He wrote in the Dutch vernacular, the language of the common people of the Low Countries, rather than in Latin, the language of the Church liturgy and official texts, in order to reach a wider audience.
The Beguines and the Beghards were Christian lay religious orders that were active in Northern Europe, particularly in the Low Countries, in the 13th–16th centuries. Their members lived in semi-monastic communities but did not take formal religious vows. That is, although they promised not to marry "as long as they lived as Beguines," to quote one of the early Rules, they were free to leave at any time. Beguines were part of a larger spiritual revival movement of the 13th century that stressed imitation of Christ's life through voluntary poverty, care of the poor and sick, and religious devotion.
Flemish literature is literature from Flanders, historically a region comprising parts of present-day Belgium, France and the Netherlands. Until the early 19th century, this literature was regarded as an integral part of Dutch literature. After Belgium became independent from the Netherlands in 1830, the term Flemish literature acquired a narrower meaning and refers to the Dutch-language literature produced in Belgium. It remains a part of Dutch-language literature.
Saint Mechtilde of Hackeborn was a Saxon Christian saint and a Benedictine nun. She was famous for her musical talents, gifted with a beautiful voice. At the age of 50, Mechtilde went through a grave spiritual crisis, as well as physical suffering. In the modern Benedictine calendar, her feast is celebrated on the anniversary of her death, November 19. She died in the monastery of Helfta.
Middle Dutch literature (1150–1500) is the Dutch literature produced in the Low Countries from the 12th century up to the sixteenth century. It is preceded by only a few fragmentary texts existing in Old Dutch, and it was succeeded by Dutch Renaissance and Golden Age literature.
Gertrude of Hackeborn (1232–1292) was the abbess of the Benedictine convent of Helfta, near Eisleben in modern Germany.
Hadewijch was a 13th-century poet and mystic, probably living in the Duchy of Brabant. Most of her extant writings are in a Brabantian form of Middle Dutch. Her writings include visions, prose letters and poetry. Hadewijch was one of the most important direct influences on John of Ruysbroeck.
The Order of the Immaculate Conception, also known as the Conceptionists, are a contemplative religious order of nuns. For some years, they followed the Poor Clares Rule, but in 1511 were recognized as a separate Catholic religious order, taking a new Rule and the name of Order of Immaculate Conception.
Beatrijs is a poem written in last quarter of 14th century (ca.1374), possibly by Diederic van Assenede, and is an original Dutch poem about the legend of a nun, Beatrijs, who deserted her convent for the love of a man, lives with him for seven years and has two children. When their money is low he deserts her and she becomes a prostitute to support her children for another seven years. One day she is near her old convent, so she inquires discreetly what has become of the nun Beatrijs, and learns that people think Beatrijs is still at the convent. One night a voice urges her to return to the convent, and when she returns, Beatrijs learns that Mary has been acting in her role at the convent, and she can return without anyone knowing of her absence.
Alice of Schaerbeek, O.Cist., was a Cistercian laysister who is venerated as the patron saint of the blind and paralyzed. Her feast day is 15 June.
Saint Lutgardis of Aywières is a saint from the medieval Low Countries. She was born in Tongeren, known as Tongres in French, and entered into religious orders at the age of twelve. During her life various miracles were attributed to her, and she is known to have experienced religious ecstasies. Her feast day is June 16.
Brecht Abbey, also known as the Abbey of Our Lady of Nazareth, is an abbey of Trappistine nuns located in Brecht, in the Campine region of the province of Antwerp. Life in the abbey is characterized by prayer, reading and manual work, the three basic elements of Trappist life.
Ida of Nivelles was a beatified Cistercian nun and mystic.