, the translation
is the removal of holy objects from one locality to another (usually a higher status location). Translations could be accompanied by many acts, including all-night vigils
and processions, often involving entire communities.
The solemn translation (in Latin
) of relics is not treated as the outward recognition of sanctity. Rather, miracles confirmed a saint's sanctity, as evinced by the fact that when, in the twelfth century, the Papacy attempted to make sanctification an 'official' process, many collections of miracles were written in the hope of providing proof of the saint-in-question's status.
The date of a translation of a saint's relics was celebrated as a feast day
in its own right. For example, on January 27
is celebrated the translation of the relics of St. John Chrysostom
from the Armenian
village of Comana
(where he died in exile in 407) to Constantinople. The most commonly celebrated feast days, however, are the 'dies natales' (the day on which the saint died, not the modern idea of birthday).
Relics sometimes travelled very far. The relics of Saint Thyrsus
at Sozopolis, Pisidia
, in Asia Minor
, were brought to Constantinople
and then to Spain
. His cult became popular in the Iberian Peninsula
, where he is known as San Tirso
or Santo Tirso. Some of his relics were brought to France
: Thyrsus is thus the titular saint of the cathedral of Sisteron
in the Basses...