As a young woman from a wealthy family, Eufrosine was expected to marry a nobleman. Instead, she wanted to serve God. So she cut her hair, dressed as a man, and traveled to a monastery, becoming a monk named Emerald.
Adapted from a Latin source, this saint's life dates to about 1200 CE. Devout yet erotic, lyrical yet didactic, it blends hagiography with romance and epic in order to engage and inspire a broad audience. The tale invites readers to rethink preconceived notions of the Middle Ages, the relation between spiritual and secular values, and ideas about the history of sexuality, identity, and family.
Only fragments of the poem have been previously translated. This edition includes the first full translation alongside the Old French original as well as a glossary and other supporting material.
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