an exercise in miscellany

Wilgefortis

In people, Religion on July 10, 2012 at 11:31 am

Wilgefortis is a female saint of popular religious imagination whose cult arose in the 14th century. Her name is thought by some to derive from the Old German “heilige Vartez” (“holy face”), a translation of the Italian “Volto Santo”; others believe it to derive from the Latin “virgo fortis” (“strong virgin”). In England her name was Uncumber, and in Dutch Ontkommer (where her name means escaper). In German lands she was known as Kümmernis (where her name means “grief” or “anxiety”). She was known as Liberata in Italy and Librada in Spain (where her name means “liberated”), and as Débarras in France (where her name means “riddance”).

via Wilgefortis

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