Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Perfect FoolsFolly for Christ's Sake in Catholic and Orthodox Spirituality$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

John Saward

Print publication date: 1980

Print ISBN-13: 9780192132307

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780192132307.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 November 2020

The Golden Age

The Golden Age

(p.80) 6 The Golden Age
Perfect Fools

John Saward

Oxford University Press

The 13th century was the beginning of the golden age of the fools, both sacred and secular. Henceforth the fool is well established; he has arrived. In the alehouse or the palace, fools, buffoons, and jongleurs are a familiar sight. Whether their sage-folly be greeted with anger or delight, it now has a recognized place within medieval society. This is as true of the fools for Christ as it is of the court fools. In the later Middle Ages there is an unselfconscious revelling in the mirth, joy, and good humour of life in Christ. The star of the fools will be in the ascendant for the next three centuries. This chapter traces the journey of the fools from the world in which they had a fixed and honourable place to the harsh age which regarded them as fit only for Bedlam.

Keywords:   holy folly, holy fools, Christ, golden age

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .