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Chapter Summary

This is an epilogue for the book Ritual Memory: The Apocryphal Acts and Liturgical Commemoration in the Early Medieval West (c. 5001215). In the first chapter of the book, it has been made clear how apocrypha are generally seen in traditional scholarship as additions to the biblical canon, invented to satisfy the curiosity of the faithful about the life and deeds of Christ, his family, and his disciples. Apocrypha, with their fantastic miracle stories and fabulous features, were often labeled entertainment literature. The perspective of the apocryphal Acts as foundation myths as it surfaces in the ritual of the liturgy, necessitates and enables a return to the apocryphal narratives themselves and to their transmission in the Latin world. The study of medieval statements dealing with apocryphal traditions, of which the book gives only a partial account, is an aspect that deserves more attention in future research.

Keywords: apocryphal Acts; Christ; early medieval West; liturgical commemoration; liturgy; miracle stories; ritual memory



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