Friday, July 29, 2011

St. Martha's Day

Christ in the House of Martha and Mary, by Jan Vermeer Van Delft, 1654-5
St. Martha of Bethany. It is ironic to me that she who tamed a dragon would also be the patroness of housewives. To quote from Fisheaters:
The exact nature of the (obviously now-extinct) creature being called a "dragon" is unknown (many Saints have been credited with having dealt with "dragons" -- Saints Margaret of Antioch and George being the two best-known -- and, of course, St. Michael will have his way with the Dragon of Dragons in the end!). But in any case, St. Martha's conquering of the beast known as "La Tarasque" has been commemorated in Tarascon, France (the town was named for the animal) ever since A.D. 1474 when "Good King Rene" instituted an annual celebration which continues to this day and takes place now in the last weekend of June. The town lies just between Avignon and Arles, on the left bank of the Rhone River, in a part of France famous for caves filled with "prehistoric" art. (Read entire article.)

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