Women saints and their nature has always been debated by scholars due to the inaccuracy and bias of the hagiographical sources. Typically, the sources have had authors who were male and who depicted allegorical holiness and their views of women over reality. Within the troubled sources, scholars have always have debated on how to write about women saints. One way is that scholars have tried to use the depiction of women from the sources to discuss the way women were viewed in society. By looking at the view of women saints in a society, it is possible to see the cultural trends that were flowing through a society.

This paper looks at the cultural trends connected to women saints within the Mid to Late Medieval Period (the 11th Century to 14th Century) of the regions of Western Central and Southern Europe and the Byzantine Empire. Specifically, it focuses on the women saints of the Catholic and Orthodox faith in the regions. This paper explains why there is an increase in women Catholic saints compared with a decline in women Orthodox Saints during the Late Medieval Ages. Afterward, it connects how this trend depicts cultural issues and solutions in Late Medieval society and the hagiographical works on women saints.

Semester/Year of Award

Fall 12-11-2017


Timothy Smit

Mentor Professional Affiliation


Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level



History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies

Department Name when Degree Awarded