Titles of Mary

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Our Lady of Good Counsel by Pasquale Sarullo, 19th century. Our Lady of Good Counsel by Pasquale Sarullo.jpg
Our Lady of Good Counsel by Pasquale Sarullo, 19th century.

Mary is known by many different titles (Blessed Mother, Madonna, Our Lady), epithets (Star of the Sea, Queen of Heaven, Cause of Our Joy), invocations ( Theotokos , Panagia , Mother of Mercy) and other names (Our Lady of Loreto, Our Lady of Guadalupe).

Mary, mother of Jesus religious figure and mother of Jesus of Nazareth

Mary was a first-century BC Galilean Jewish woman of Nazareth, and the mother of Jesus, according to the New Testament and the Quran.

An epithet is a byname, or a descriptive term, accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied to seemingly real or fictitious people, divinities, objects, and binomial nomenclature. It can also be a descriptive title: for example, Pallas Athena, Alfred the Great, Suleiman the Magnificent or Władysław I the Elbow-high.

Our Lady, Star of the Sea invocation of Mary, Mother of Jesus

Our Lady, Star of the Sea is an ancient title for the Virgin Mary. The words Star of the Sea are a translation of the Latin title Stella Maris.

Contents

All of these titles refer to the same individual named Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ (in the New Testament) and are used variably by Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, and some Anglicans. (Note: Mary Magdalene, Mary of Clopas, and Mary Salome are different individuals from Mary, mother of Jesus.)

New Testament Second division of the Christian biblical canon

The New Testament is the second part of the Christian biblical canon, the first part being the Old Testament, based on the Hebrew Bible. The New Testament discusses the teachings and person of Jesus, as well as events in first-century Christianity. Christians regard both the Old and New Testaments together as sacred scripture. The New Testament has frequently accompanied the spread of Christianity around the world. It reflects and serves as a source for Christian theology and morality. Extended readings and phrases directly from the New Testament are incorporated into the various Christian liturgies. The New Testament has influenced religious, philosophical, and political movements in Christendom and left an indelible mark on literature, art, and music.

Oriental Orthodoxy Branch of Eastern Christianity

Oriental Orthodoxy is the fourth largest communion of Christian churches, with about 76 million members worldwide. As one of the oldest religious institutions in the world, it has played a prominent role in the history and culture of Armenia, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Sudan and parts of the Middle East and India. An Eastern Christian communion of autocephalous churches, its bishops are equal by virtue of episcopal ordination, and its doctrines can be summarised in that the communion recognizes the validity of only the first three ecumenical councils.

Anglicanism The practices, liturgy and identity of the Church of England

Anglicanism is a Western Christian tradition which has developed from the practices, liturgy and identity of the Church of England following the English Reformation.

Many of the titles given to Mary are dogmatic in nature. Other titles are poetic or allegorical and have lesser or no canonical status, but which form part of popular piety, with varying degrees of acceptance by the clergy. Yet more titles refer to depictions of Mary in the history of art.

Dogma is an official system of principles or doctrines of a religion, such as Roman Catholicism, or the positions of a philosopher or of a philosophical school such as Stoicism.

Popular piety is a notion defined in the Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy issued by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Catholic Church.

History of art history of human creation of works for aesthetic, communicative, or expressive purposes

The history of art focuses on objects made by humans in visual form for aesthetic purposes. Visual art can be classified in diverse ways, such as separating fine arts from applied arts; inclusively focusing on human creativity; or focusing on different media such as architecture, sculpture, painting, film, photography, and graphic arts. In recent years, technological advances have led to video art, computer art, Performance art, animation, television, and videogames.

Historical and cultural context

There are several stories on the significance of the relatively large number of titles given to Mary. [1] Some titles grew due to geographic and cultural reasons, e.g. through the veneration of specific icons. Others were related to Marian apparitions.

Mary's help is sought for a large spectrum of human needs in varied situations. This led to the formulation of many of her titles (good counsel, help of the sick, etc.). Moreover, meditations and devotions on the different aspects of the Virgin Mary's role within the life of Jesus led to additional titles such as Our Lady of Sorrows. [2] Still further titles have been derived from dogmas and doctrines, such as the Immaculate Conception.

Our Lady of Good Counsel title of the Virgin Mary

Our Lady of Good Counsel is a title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary, after a painting said to be miraculous, now found in the thirteenth century Augustinian church at Genazzano, near Rome, Italy. Measuring 40 by 45 centimeters the image is a fresco executed on a thin layer of plaster no thicker than an egg shell. Over the centuries, devotions to Our Lady of the Good Counsel grew among saints and Popes, to the extent that a reference to it was added to the Litany of Loreto and the devotion spread throughout the world. Her feast day is April 26.

Our Lady of Sorrows title of Mary, mother of Jesus

Our Lady of Sorrows, Our Lady of Dolours, the Sorrowful Mother or Mother of Sorrows, and Our Lady of Piety, Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows or Our Lady of the Seven Dolours are names by which the Virgin Mary is referred to in relation to sorrows in her life. As Mater Dolorosa, it is also a key subject for Marian art in the Catholic Church.

Immaculate Conception Catholic doctrine that Mary was conceived free from original sin

In Christian theology, the Immaculate Conception is the conception of the Virgin Mary free from original sin by virtue of the merits of her son Jesus. The Catholic Church teaches that God acted upon Mary in the first moment of her conception, keeping her "immaculate".

Mary's cultus or "devotional cult" consolidated in the year 431 when, at the Council of Ephesus, the Theotokos , or Mary as bearer (or mother) of God, was declared dogma. Henceforth Marian devotion—which centered on the subtle and complex relationship between Mary, Jesus, and the Church—would flourish, first in the East and later in the West.

Cult is literally the "care" owed to deities and to temples, shrines, or churches. Cult is embodied in ritual and ceremony. Its present or former presence is made concrete in temples, shrines and churches, and cult images, including cult images and votive offerings at votive sites.

<i>Theotokos</i> title given to Mary in Eastern Christianity

Theotokos is a title of Mary, mother of Jesus, used especially in Eastern Christianity. The usual Latin translations, Dei Genetrix or Deipara, are "Mother of God" or "God-bearer".

The Reformation diminished Mary's role in many parts of Northern Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. The Council of Trent and Counter Reformation would intensify Marian devotion in the West. Around the same period, Mary would become an instrument of evangelization in the Americas and parts of Asia and Africa, e.g. via the apparitions at Our Lady of Guadalupe which resulted in a large number of conversions to Christianity in Mexico.

Following the Reformation, as of the 17th century, the baroque literature on Mary experienced unforeseen growth with over 500 pages of Mariological writings during the 17th century alone. [3] During the Age of Enlightenment, the emphasis on scientific progress and rationalism put Catholic theology and Mariology often on the defensive in the later parts of the 18th century, to the extent that books such as The Glories of Mary (by Alphonsus Liguori) were written in defense of Mariology.

Dogmatic titles

Early titles of Mary

“Our Lady” is a common title to give to Mary as a sign of respect and honor. In French she is called "Notre Dame" and in Spanish she is "Nuestra Señora". [8]

EnglishLatinGreekNotes
MaryMariaMariam (Μαριάμ), Maria (Μαρία)Arabic: Maryām (مريم), Chinese: (瑪利亞), Coptic: Maria (Ⲙⲁⲣⲓⲁ), French: Marie, German: Maria, Italian: Maria, Judeo-Aramaic: Maryām (מרים), Maltese: Marija, Portuguese: Maria, Russian: Marija (Мария), Spanish: María, Syriac: Mariam, Vietnamese: Maria
"Full of Grace", "Blessed", "Most Blessed"Gratia plena, Beata, Beatissimakecharitomene [10] (κεχαριτωμένη)from the angel's greeting to Mary in Luke 1:28;
"Virgin", "the Virgin"VirgoParthenos [11] [12] (Παρθένος)Greek parthenos used in Matthew 1:22; Ignatius of Antioch refers to Mary's virginity and motherhood (ca. 110);
"Cause of our Salvation"causa salutis [13] according to Irenaeus of Lyons (150202);
"Mother of God"Mater DeiMeter Theou (Μήτηρ Θεοῦ)often abbr. ΜΡ ΘΥ in Greek iconography;
"God-bearer"Deipara, Dei genitrix Theotokos (Θεοτόκος)lit. "one who bears the One who is God"; a common title in Eastern Christianity with christological implications; adopted officially during Council of Ephesus (431) in response to Nestorianism, which questioned the Church's teaching that Jesus Christ's nature was unified;
"Ever-virgin"semper virgoaei-parthenos [11] (ἀειπάρθενος)
"Holy Mary", "Saint Mary"Sancta MariaHagia Maria [11] (Ἁγία Μαρία)Greek invocation is infrequent in contemporary Eastern Christianity; [14]
"Most Holy"Sanctissima, tota Sancta [15] Panagia (Παναγία)
"Most Pure"Purissima
"Immaculate"immaculataakeratos [11] (ἀκήρατος)
"Lady", "Mistress"DominaDespoina [11] (Δέσποινα)related, "Madonna" (Italian: Madonna, from ma "my" + donna "lady"; from Latin domina); also, "Notre Dame" (French: Notre Dame, lit. "our lady");
"Queen of Heaven"Regina Coeli, Regina Caeli Mary is identified with the figure in Revelation 12:1;

Papal actions

Image TypeTypical Art StyleDescription
Odigitriya Smolenskaya Dionisiy.jpg

Hodegetria
"She Who Shows the Way"

Byzantine Mary holds Christ in her left hand and with her right hand she "shows the way" by pointing to Him;
Presbyter Martinus Madonna als Sedes Sapientiae.jpg

Sedes Sapientiae
"Throne of Wisdom"

Romanesque Christ is seated in His mother Mary's lap, symbolically the "Throne of Wisdom";
Toledo Virgen Coro.jpg

"Gothic Madonna"

Gothic Based loosely on Byzantine Hodegetria iconography; typically depicts a standing, smiling Mary and playful Christ Child; considered one of the earliest depictions of Mary that is strictly Western; [16]
Giovenone Madonna del latte Trino.jpg

Madonna Lactans
"Our Lady Nursing"

Gothic and Renaissance The Virgin is depicted breastfeeding the Holy Infant. One of the earliest depictions (if not the earliest depiction) of Mary, is Our Lady nursing, as painted in the Catacomb of Priscilla in Rome, c. A.D. 250; [17] Discouraged by the Council of Trent and rare subsequently.
Lippo memmi, madonna della misericordia, Chapel of the Corporal, Duomo, Orvieto.jpg

Mater Misericordiae
"Virgin/Mother of Mercy"

Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque A regal, celestial Mary is depicted covering the faithful in her protective mantle; first arose in the late 13th century in Central Europe and Italy; depiction is commonly associated with plague monuments. [18]
Maesta-madonna.jpg

Maestà
"Majesty"
of the Virgo Deipara
"Virgin God-bearer"

Gothic Mary is seated in majesty, holding the Christ Child; based on Byzantine Nikopoia iconography;
Michelangelo's Pieta 5450 cropncleaned.jpg

Pietà
"Pity"
of the Mater Dolorosa
"Mother of Sorrows"

Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque Mary cradles the dead body of Jesus Christ after his crucifixion; this type emerged first in the 13th century in Germany as an Andachtsbild or devotional icon relating to grief; Italian Pietàs appeared in the 14th century; [19] Michelangelo's Pietà (14981499) is considered a masterpiece;
Antonello da Messina 033.jpg

Mater Amabilis
"Loving Mother"
commonly, " Madonna and Child "

Renaissance, Baroque Iconic Western depiction with many variations; based loosely on Byzantine Glykophilousa ("sweet kisses") iconography; Mary turns her gaze away from the Christ Child as she contemplates His future Passion; Renaissance emphasis on classical ideal types, realistic human anatomy, and linear perspective are evident;

Devotional titles

In the Loreto Litanies Mary's prayers are invoked under more than fifty separate titles, such as "Mother Most Pure", "Virgin Most Prudent", and "Cause of Our Joy". [20]

Other devotional titles include:

Titles associated with devotional images

Our Lady of Penafrancia in Naga City, Philippines Penafrancia Original Image.jpg
Our Lady of Peñafrancia in Naga City, Philippines

Other titles related to images include:

Titles associated with apparitions

Our Lady of the Rosary as Madonna di Pompei Icona Madonna Pompei.jpg
Our Lady of the Rosary as Madonna di Pompei

Latin America

A number of titles of Mary found in Latin America pertain to cultic images of her represented in iconography identified with a particular already existent title adapted to a particular place. Our Lady of Luján in Argentina refers to a small terracotta image made in Brazil and sent to Argentina in May, 1630. Its appearance seems to have been inspired by Murillo's Immaculates. Our Lady of Copacabana (Bolivia): is a figure related to devotion to Mary under the title "Most Blessed Virgin de la Candelaria, Our Lady of Copacabana". About four feet in height, the statue was made by Francisco Tito Yupanqui around 1583 and is garbed in the colors and dress of an Inca princess. [23]

Titles in the Orthodox Church

Theotokos of Pochayiv Bagarodzitsa Pachaeuskaia z tsudami. 2-ia pal. XVIII st., Valyn'.jpg
Theotokos of Pochayiv

Theotokos means "God-bearer" and is translated as "Mother of God". This title was given to Mary at the Third Ecumenical Council in Ephesus in 431 AD.(cf. Luke 1:43). [26]

Titles of Mary in Islam

The Qur'an refers to Mary (Arabic : مريم, romanized: Maryām) by the following titles:

See also

Citations

  1. “Why does Mary have So Many Different Titles?” All About Mary, International Marian Research Institute, University of Dayton.
  2. Tavard, George Henry, The thousand faces of the Virgin Mary 1996 ISBN   0-8146-5914-4 p. 95
  3. Roskovany, A., conceptu immacolata ex monumentis omnium seculrorum demonstrate III, Budapest 1873
  4. by Braaten, Carl E. and Jenson, Robert W., Mary, Mother of God, 2004 ISBN   0802822665 p. 84
  5. Maas, Anthony. "Virgin Birth of Christ." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 15. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1912. 10 April 2016
  6. Wuerl, Donald W. and Stubna, Kris D., The Teaching of Christ: A Catholic Catechism for Adults, Our Sunday Visitor Publishing, 2004, ISBN   9781592760947
  7. "In Honor of Nuestra Señora de Guia", De AnDA (2009-11-22),
  8. Hargett, Malea. "Marian titles chosen for one out of four churches in diocese", Arkansas Catholic, Diocese of Arkansas, May 20, 2006
  9. Mauriello, Matthew R., “Mary the New Eve,” Frei Francisco.
  10. "...Byzantine inscriptions from Palestine...in the sixth [century]....fourteen inscriptions invoke "Holy Mary" (Hagia Maria), eleven more hail her as Theotokos; others add the attribution of "Immaculate" (Akeratos), "Most Blessed" (Kecharitomene), "Mistress" (Despoina), "Virgin" or "Ever-Virgin" (Aei-Parthenos)." ( Frend 1984 , p. 836)
  11. 1 2 3 4 5 Frend 1984, p. 836.
  12. "Blue Letter Bible" lexicon results for parthenos Retrieved December 19, 2007.
  13. Irenaeus of Lyons (Adversus Haereses 3.22.4).
  14. The Titles of Saints, Orthodox Holiness, December 18, 2005
  15. "Universität Mannheim". www.uni-mannheim.de. 3 January 2019.
  16. Madonna. (2008). In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved February 17, 2008, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online:
  17. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-11-01. Retrieved 2009-08-24.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  18. Jeep 2001, p. 393.
  19. Watts, Barbara. "Pietà". Grove Art Online. Oxford University Press, Retrieved February 17, 2008, http://www.groveart.com/
  20. "The Loreto Litanies". The Holy See. Retrieved 2011-11-07.
  21. Duricy, Michael P., “Black Madonnas: Origin, History, Controversy,” All About Mary, International Marian Research Institute, University of Dayton.
  22. 1 2 3 "Titles of Mary", Regis University
  23. 1 2 3 “Latin American Titles of Mary,” All About Mary, International Marian Research Institute, University of Dayton.
  24. Paraguay: South America's Lewis Carroll world
  25. Website of Center for the Promotion of Devotion, Sanctuary of Mary of the Rosary of San Nicolás]
  26. 1 2 3 "Titles of the Holy Theotokos, Saint Mary", Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, Diocese of Los Angeles

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References