wundor

wundor, n.n: a wonder; a circumstance that excites astonishment; a miracle; a wondrous thing.

And here’s one of my favourite (kind of lame) miracles: St Cuthbert’s horse who miraculously finds bread and meat in the roof.

cuthbert

Image from British Library Medieval Manuscripts blog: Miniature of the young St Cuthbert kneeling in prayer, while his horse miraculously finds food hidden in the roof. Yates Thompson MS 26, f. 14r; England (Durham); 4th quarter of the 12th century.

From Chapter 5 of Bede’s prose Life of St Cuthbert (translation of the Latin):

“When the evening drew near, and he perceived that he could not finish his intended journey the same day, and that there was no house at hand in which he could pass the night, he presently fell upon some shepherds’ huts, which, having been slightly constructed in the summer, were now deserted and ruinous. Into one of these he entered, and having tied his horse to the wall, placed before him a handful of hay, which the wind had forced from the roof. He then turned his thoughts to prayer, but suddenly, as he was singing a psalm, he saw his horse lift up his head and pull out some straw from the roof, and among the straw there fell down a linen cloth folded up, with something in it. When he had ended his prayers, wishing to see what this was, he came and opened the cloth, and found in it half of a loaf of bread, still hot, and some meat, enough of both to serve him for a single meal. In gratitude for the Divine goodness, he exclaimed, “Thanks be to God, who of his bounty hath deigned to provide a meal for me when I was hungry, as well as a supper for my beast.” He therefore divided the piece of bread into two parts, of which he gave one to his horse and kept the other for himself.

mucg-wyrt

mucg-wyrt, f.n: mugwort.

mugwort

Image: On the left, lentopodion (lady’s mantle) and sclerata (ranunculus scleratus). On the right, butracion staticeum (butterwort) and artemesiae (mugwort). From the Bodleian Library.

Wikipedia: ‘In the European Middle Ages, mugwort was used as a magical protective herb. Mugwort was used to repel insects, especially moths, from gardens. Mugwort has also been used from ancient times as a remedy against fatigue and to protect travelers against evil spirits and wild animals. Roman soldiers put mugwort in their sandals to protect their feet against fatigue. Mugwort is one of the nine herbs invoked in the pagan Anglo-Saxon Nine Herbs Charm, recorded in the 10th century in the Lacnunga.’