Posted by: Marte Spangen | September 13, 2015

Ruralia XI in Clervaux, Luxembourg

Some of the Ruralia XI participants by the well of St. Willibrord in Rindschleiden, Luxembourg, a source allegedly "brought out with his miraculous stick". Outdoor sermons are still held here once a year, and the park around it has recently been redesigned with a designated area for spreading ashes.

Some of the Ruralia XI participants by the well of St. Willibrord in Rindschleiden, Luxembourg. The source was allegedly “brought out with his miraculous stick”. Outdoor sermons are still held here once a year, and the park around it has recently been redesigned with i.a. a designated area for spreading ashes.

The academic autumn season of conferences has started and I spent last week in Luxembourg to attend the 11th conference of the rural archaeology network Ruralia. About 60 researchers from all over Europe met to discuss various aspects of “Religious places, cults and rituals in medieval rural environment”. I presented my project in a paper called “Sami circular offering sites – medieval religious anomalies or a modern myth?” and received many useful questions and comments, as well as some very good tips about similar structures other places in Europe and researchers I should contact about these.

Fantastic frescoes from the first half of the 15th century inside the church of Rindschleiden. The photo does not do them justice!

Fantastic frescoes from the first half of the 15th century inside the church of Rindschleiden. The photo does not do them justice!

The other conference papers covered a wide range of topics from rock-cut graves in Portugal to pilgrim churches for parents with deceased children in Swtitzerland, offering caves in Latvia, hermitages in the UK, and many other interesting localities and approaches to the main subject of religion, cult, and rituals at the outskirts in Europe. In addition we got to see some of Luxembourg and its sites of religious significance during several excursions. Unfortunately I could not stay for the whole program, but I am very happy I got the chance to participate in this highly interesting and enjoyable event. Many thanks to the organizers for a great week in Clervaux!


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