The Ideal of Virginity in the Post-Tridentine Monastic Life Using the Example of the Maiden’s Palm (Palma panieńska, 1607) by Szymon Wysocki
Copyright (c) 2022 Katarzyna Kaczor-Scheitler
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The subject of the article is the issue of virginity and the broader post-Tridentine spirituality using the example of the Maiden’s Palm or the Dissertation on Virginhood (Palma panieńska albo rozprawa o stanie dziewiczym, Kalisz 1607) by Szymon Wysocki, who translated the Italian work Trattato della verginita et dello stato verginale (Rome 1584) by Basili Gradi, introducing only minor editorial modifications. Attention is focused on the ideals and instructions contained in the Polish translation and its place and role in the panorama of 17th-century didactic works devoted to spirituality. The article shows what role Wysocki’s Polish translation could have played in monastic life and in the field of 17th-century literature. It also reveals what kind of translator Szymon Wysocki was, who did not belong to auctores unius libri and translated about 30 works into Polish. The reflection also covers the place of Maiden’s Palm (Palma panieńska) among other Old Polish translations. Perhaps its appearance resulted in the creation of similar didactic treatises intended for consecrated persons. The ideal of religious perfection presented in the Maidenly Palm, which was largely based on the biblical and patristic tradition, was certainly an expression of the participation of both Benedictine and Jesuit orders in the shaping of post-Tridentine spirituality.