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A pilgrimage to the shrine of St James in the 7thC???


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2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Act of Mercy is the eight novel in the Sister Fidelma series written by Peter Tremayne.

Sister Fidelma of Cashel, a town in Ireland, lived in the seventh century A.D.This story is set almost entirely on a voyage to a pilgrimage. Sister Fidelma begins a “retreat” to a shrine of Saint James in Iberia. Sister feels she needs the retreat to sort out her feelings toward her vocation and her life.

7th century? St James had a shrine in Iberia in the 7th C?? Ok - this is a work of fiction, but don't historical writers at least TRY to get their time line correct?

Wikipedia tells us that Peter Berresford Ellis (born 10 March 1943) is a historian, literary biographer and novelist with degrees in Celtic Studies, obtaining a first class honours BA and his master's degree, as well as a Doctorate of Literature (honoris causa) in recognition of his work. He has published over 80 books to date under his own name and his pseudonym Peter Tremayne. An expert on Celtic history and culture, he is best known in Cornwall as the author of The Cornish Language and its Literature in 1974, which is still regarded as the definitive history of the language and was a set text in the Cornish Language Board's examinations.
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genesis of a pendant belief in the late seventh century

sillydoll said:
St James had a shrine in Iberia in the 7th C??
Camino Wiki
> ... /Main_Page
> • 1.2 Medieval pilgrimage
> ... pilgrimage
> A brief history of pilgrimage
> ... pilgrimage
> • 5 Recommended reading
> Medieval European Pilgrimage by Diana Webb, ISBN 0-333-76260-6.
> Chapter 1 is available on the publisher's website
> Medieval European Pilgramage c.700-c.1500 by Diana Webb
> ... 0333762606
> Read a sample chapter
> - page 14/54 :

... There are still unanswered and probably unanswerable questions about the genesis of the belief that the body of St James the Great was brought to Galicia by his disciples after his martyrdom in Jerusalem. Improbable in itself, it seems to have originated as a pendant to the equally unlikely belief, attested already in the late seventh century, that St James had preached in Spain, returning thence to Jerusalem and martyrdom. It is not known when pilgrimage to the shrine began, but the long-reigning Alfonso III, king of the Asturias (866–910), with Sisnando, bishop of Iria (c.880–920), actively promoted its fortunes, and a new church was consecrated to the apostle in 899...


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Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
No doubt she was a Priscillianist but it all got edited out!


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an instinct implanted in human nature

A pilgrimage to the shrine of St James in the 7thC???
Found some inspiring quotes on earlier ages to ponder over in: ... h_djvu.txt full text ... 00jonerich flip book

"Celtic Britain and the Pilgrim movement"
BY THE REV. G. HARTWELL JONES, M.A., D.D., Rector of Nutfield, Surrey,
Member of the Royal Commission on Ancient Monuments in Wales and Monmouthshire.

I. — Introductory . . . . . . . . . . 1
II. — Motives. — Relics . . . . . . . 13

[4] Under the category of Catholic usages falls the pilgrim movement, which was simply the outcome of an instinct implanted in human nature. St. Augustine once said, "The soul finds rest nowhere until it rests in God".
The pilgrimage is an expression of this feeling, and is in its essence nothing but a search after God in different places and through different acts. It was, therefore, natural to visit scenes or objects, sacred and venerable for their arresting associations ; to honour and to imitate characters conspicuous for virtue or piety. Pilgrimage combined all these various features, and offered scope for these manifold activities. It represents an endeavour to localise, as it were, to collect and to concentrate the thoughts on the Deity. Undeveloped intellects experience a difficulty in grasping the omniscience [5] and omnipresence of God ; such truths being too abstract and vague for popular comprehension. For this reason the institution may be traced back to a vast antiquity, in visible historical continuity, to a primitive stage of culture among the rudest communities, to their habit of localising incidents in the history, real or fabulous, of eponymous heroes. The vitality of this belief is demonstrated by the fact that it lived on after Christianity came.

[6] The germs of the cultus of the Saints may be found in the ideas prevalent in the Jewish world after the Captivity; for example, in the veneration of Elijah. Still more, it is a natural deduction from the doctrine of the "Communion of Saints". But ethnic usages contributed to its growth. Among these extraneous influences must be reckoned the Graeco-Roman deification of heroes. It is possible, too, that the apotheosis of the Csesars may have imparted an impulse to the cult.

[9] St. Nicholas, a native of Patara in Lycia, undertook a pilgrimage to Jerusalem also, and on his way back was in a marvellous manner elected bishop of Myra, the capital of his native country.*

[10] In the fourth century writers traced the custom of pilgrimage to the Holy Land to a sub-Apostolic custom, but no clear evidence exists that any definite pilgrimage vas undertaken before a.d. 212. The first well-authenticated visit of the kind relates to the Inventio Crucis of Queen Helena. This event, itself the result of a pre-existent enthusiasm, evoked passionate veneration. It was in the year 326 (so ran the account) that the Empress in obedience to a vision set out to discover the True Cross.
She arrived at Mount Calvary to find it polluted by abominations placed there for the avowed purpose of deterring devotees from repairing to the Holy Land, and of concealing from them the spot (to them the most sacred in the world) hallowed for all time by the sacrifice of Christ. But Hadrian's studied desecration of the precincts were of as little avail as the celebrated decree of the Senate at Ephesus which doomed to oblivion the incendiary of the Temple in their city, and had the effect of perpetuating his memory. For the Emperor's hostility only stimulated pilgrims the more to come to the Holy Land.*

[11] The story goes on to mention that the Cross was divided into three principal parts, each one being bestowed on three leading cities of the empire. Whatever may be thought of the legend, whether (with Newman, for instance) we regard the discovery as well accredited, or, as has been suggested, it was intended to restore to Jerusalem its former fame and to enhance the dignity and extend the influence of that See,* there can be no doubt that the event added fresh fuel to the passion for visiting Palestine. From that time forth pilgrimages became the fashion. St. Jerome, who had cooled the ardour of devout souls contemplating the journey, if he did not actually dissuade them from the enterprise, himself took up his abode in a cave at Bethlehem, and his example, was more potent than his counsels.

About the same time, owing to a variety of causes which will arise for discussion later, Rome emerged as a centre of pilgrimage and was destined in time to supplant Jerusalem in public estimation. The temper of the age was not a very critical one. It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the veneration once inspired by the names of the heroes of the Christian Faith, owed some of its fascination to the legendary lore that gathered around the heathen Pantheon. The very Catholicity of the Imperial religion encouraged the adoption of the gods

* The finding of the Cross did very little in furthering this object. It was not until the Council of Chalcedon (451) that Jerusalem was made a Patriarchate and then only the lowest of the five. St. Helen no doubt found something, and if a fraud was committed she was probably deceived herself. But whether what she found was the real Cross is another matter.

[12] ... and demigods of subject races. There were but few of these which had not their counterparts at Rome ; and the scenes associated with their reputed exploits, possessed their own consecrating legend. To this familiarity with the forms of worship among various nationalities which made up the complex dominions of the Emperors, must be added a fresh factor, which stimulated mythopoeic ingenuity not a little ; a few of the sanctuaries connected with these indigenous or extraneous divinities, were themselves already the resort of crowds of votaries, a circumstance which must have tended to heighten the importance of the awe and devotion felt for the martyrs who supplanted them.


More in Hynt St. Ialm - the Welsh connection on pilgrim-books/topic5708.html



  • Celtic Britain oppp112 Jerusalem Holy Sepulchre 0143.jpg
    Celtic Britain oppp112 Jerusalem Holy Sepulchre 0143.jpg
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