Earth as a Relic of the Sacred and the Profane Cover Image

Muld sakraalse ja profaanse reliikviana
Earth as a Relic of the Sacred and the Profane

Author(s): Reet Hiiemäe
Subject(s): Customs / Folklore
Published by: Eesti Kirjandusmuuseum

Summary/Abstract: The article attempts to shed some light on beliefs and customs concerning the concept of earth as a relic, and clarify the origin of the notion 'Holy Ground' and popular concepts associated with it. The author draws parallels with the cult of saints, brings examples of the transitory role of earth in connection with the burial sites and apparition places of saints, and discusses the essence of contact relics. The article concludes with drawing parallels with the profane. The final comparison indicates that the reverence of earth as a relic of the profane and the sacred coincides in several aspects. This allows us to conclude that even today's irreligious people have need for objects of worship, and the traditions associated with earth and soil are regarded as an acceptable way of satisfying this need.

  • Issue Year: 2000
  • Issue No: 14
  • Page Range: 140-151
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: Estonian