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Legend

LEGEND (through the French from the med. Lat. legenda, things to be read, from legere, to read), in its primary meaning the history or life-story of a saint, and so applied to portions of Scripture and selections from the lives of the saints as read at divine service. The statute of 3 and 4 Edward VI. dealing with the abolition of certain books and images (1549), cap. 10, sect, i, says that " all bookes . . . called processionalles, manuelles, legends . . . shall be ... abolished." The " Golden Legend," or Aurea Legenda, was the name given to a book containing lives of the saints and descriptions of festivals, written by Jacobus de Voragine, archbishop of Genoa, in the 13th century. From the original application of the word to stories of the saints containing wonders and miracles, the word cameto be applied to a story handed down without any foundation in history, but popularly believed to be true. " Legend " is also used of a writing, inscription, or motto on coins or medals, and in connexion with coats of arms, shields, monuments, etc.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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