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Martyrdom and Demonic Possession: The Virginal followers of Saint Ursula

  • 07/05/2024
  • 18:00-19:30
  • online talk

Martyrdom and Demonic Possession: The Virginal followers of Saint Ursula

A Folklore Society Online Talk, by Eric Huang

Tuesday 7 May 2024, 18:00 BST

Saint Ursula is a princess and martyr from Roman Britannia. Her legend is based around a pilgrimage to Rome that included an entourage of 11,000 virgins. They met their end in modern-day Germany – some say at the hands of Atilla the Hun himself!

The discovery of their remains in the 12th century inspired a movement among women who rejected traditional female roles to remain unmarried and live in communal groups without the influence of men. Many were accused of witchcraft.

The saint’s legend also gave birth to a monastic order of nuns, the Ursulines. Their chapter in Loudon, France, was scandalised in the 17th century by demonic possessions and a sensational witch trial.

Eric Huang is the creator and host of Saint Podcast, a podcast that explores legends of the saints through queer and feminist stories, Medieval lore, Ancient legends, and pop culture.

Tickets £6.00 (£4.00 for Folklore Society members with the Promo Code)

Every ticket sold helps to support the work of The Folklore Society

Image: ‘Saint Ursula and her Maidens,’ by Niccolo di Pietro, via Wikimedia Commons