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Comment: Ships from Memphis, Tennessee. Cover shows almost no wear. Pages are in great shape. However, I have downgraded to "good" condition since there is writing in pen and pink highlighting across the first 29 pages - rest of pages are clean. All domestic orders come with free tracking. (OO)
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The Cockleshell Pilgrim - A Medieval Journey to Compostela Paperback – September 19, 2003

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dr Katherine Lack is a freelance writer and lecturer in church history . She is the author of The Eagle and the Dove, the story of the Celtic saint, Columbanus Triangle, 2000. She lives in Whitbourne, Worcestershire.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: The Society For Promoting Christian Knowledge (September 19, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0281055904
  • ISBN-13: 978-0281055906
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.4 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,045,950 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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In 1986, the Worcester Pilgrim burial site was accidentally discovered in the Cathedral. A 15th century man was found buried under the tower, dressed for a pilgrim journey. This unusual find inspired Lack, a scholar in church history, to become a historical detective and make some guesses about his identity and about the trip which defined his life so much that he wanted to be buried in its symbolic costume.

Lack tentatively identifies the pilgrim as Robert Sutton, an educated urban tradesman from the early 15th century who had apparently made the long arduous trek from Worcester to Compostela in Spain. She then reconstructs what his probable journey would have been, going so far as to include possible timeframes and the corresponding physical and political conditions that would have been part of the trip.

The book is structured so that it largely focuses on the trip itself. In the first three chapters, she covers the identity of the pilgrim and his potential motivations. From that point in the book forward, the book is structured as steps in the pilgrimage-- going from England, to Brittany, to Armagnac France, to Navarre and finally arriving at the Camino in Castile.

As a historical reconstruction, the book is fascinating. She brings an obvious wealth of research to the reader and weaves a convincing and concrete narrative about what the Compostela could have been like for Sutton. I enjoyed and applauded her use of small details which did not distract from the text and added enough verasimilitude to keep the read smooth and fast. Lack makes an effort to capture the emotional side of pilgrimage as well, in a way that resonated as realistic and helped provide a character arc to the depicted journey.
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The Cockleshell Pilgrim - A Medieval Journey to Compostela
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