On 26 June 2020, Corine Schleif, Volker Schier and Anne Simon presented key passages from the new edition of the correspondence of the Birgittine nun Katerina Lemmel

Katerina Lemmel, née Tucher, came from a wealthy, influential Nuremberg family and her correspondence provides a Southern German counterpart to the Northern German correspondence preserved in the Lüne letterbooks, showing the agency of cloistered women and how the religious and economic aspects of life interlinked.

Katerina Lemmel touched on many existential, social, and aesthetic issues we face today: She bears witness to concrete gender and economic inequities, both within the monastery and outside, and she seeks solutions. She points out the communicational constraints and psychological dangers of being locked down and isolated, which she works to overcome. She tells of the recurring threat of a pandemic and proposes prophylactics. She voices appreciation for the powerful potential of color and technique to produce emotional sensation in stained glass, the impact of candlelight together with chant, as well as the verbal, aromatic, and culinary rhythms of the church year.

Title page for the correspondence of Katerina Lemmel

Pepper for Prayer: The Correspondence of the Birgittine Nun Katerina Lemmel, 1516-1525. edited and translated by Volker Schier, Corine Schleif, and Anne Simon. Stockholm: Runica et Mediaevalia, 2019. ISBN 978-91-88568-76-2.

Price 35€ incl. postage and package (to Europe). Order it via the website of the Swedish society Runica et Mediævalia by emailing the secretary Staffan Nyström. Phone: +46 76 644 04 04

Contact the editors for a copy of the quotations by emailing Volker Schier: volker.schier@gmail.com

Pepper, Prayer, Power, and the Plague. Book Launch for the Letters of Katerina Lemmel

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