Edit Madas

Senior Researcher

E-mail: madas@oszk.hu


Dr. Edit Madas is the leader of the Res libraria Hungariae Research Group, which is supported jointly by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the National Széchényi Library (one part of the group is devoted to medieval codices - Fragmenta Codicum workshop). She teaches at Pázmány Péter Catholic University and the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest. Her research areas include medieval literacy, codices, fragments of codices, and medieval Latin and Hungarian literature, especially hagiography and sermons.


In the Middle Ages and beyond, sermons were part and parcel of religious practice related to the feasts of saints. In addition, sermons constituted a highly effective means of communication, of spreading and transmitting religious and moral knowledge as well as attitudes and ideals of behavior. Sermons were essential in making the exemplary personalities of saints familiar to a broader population, largely illiterate. In consequence, studying medieval sermons on saints provides a unique vantage point for describing and understanding the intellectual content of cults as it appeared for the greatest part of medieval men and women. My contribution to the research project is the electronic edition of a selection of medieval sermons about St. Ladislas, King of Hungary.

Although the veneration of St. Ladislas was centered on medieval Hungary, and thus few sources of his cult have survived from elsewhere, it received particular attention within the kingdom. There is hardly any other saint whose feast-day was commemorated by as many different sermons composed in Hungary as St. Ladislas. In the past decade, I succeeded to identify and publish a good number of sermons about St. Ladislas. An online edition would make this rich source material available everywhere in the world in a searchable format suitable for a number of scholarly purposes, including motif-analysis, lexicographical studies, or studies of the history and literary production of later medieval Hungary.


Related publications (to be added later)