Andreas Oxner

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Andreas Oxner
Child of Judenstein
Born Anderl Oxner von Rinn
c. 1459
Austria
Died 12 July 1462 (aged 3)
Rinn, Austria
Venerated in Folk Catholicism
Beatified 1755 by Pope Benedict XIV
Catholic cult suppressed
1994 by Reinhold Stecher

Anderl (Andreas) Oxner von Rinn, also known as Andreas Oxner, (c. 1459 – 12 July 1462) is a folk saint of the Roman Catholic Church. A later writer alleged that the three-year-old boy had been ritually murdered by the Jews in the village of Rinn (Northern Tyrol, currently part of Austria).

Initial accusations[edit]

In 1475, in the wake of the blood libel of Simon of Trent, the bones of a child were brought to the parish church of Rinn. The ritual murder accusation did not arise until after 1620, by the pen of Hyppolyte Guarinoni, a doctor who, at that time, was attached to a lay sisterhood (beguinage) of noblewomen in Hall. Having probably heard of the murder through rumors, in 1642 he wrote a book on the crime: Triumph Cron Marter Vnd Grabschrift des Heilig Unschuldigen Kindts (translated roughly as "Martyrdoms Triumph Crown and Epitaph of the Holy Innocent Child"). The alleged scene of the crime, known as the "Judenstein" (or Jews' Stone),[1] became a place of pilgrimage and locus of antisemitism in the Catholic Church.

Veneration[edit]

In 1753, Pope Benedict XIV permitted the veneration of Anderl, beatifying him in 1755.[2] This facilitated the spread of the antisemitic legend through popular theatrical performances, which were based on the writings of Guarinoni and were performed until 1954. The Brothers Grimm revived the tale in 1816 when they published the first volume of their German legends. In 1893, a book appeared, Four Tyrolian Child Victims of Hassidic Fanaticism by Viennese priest Josef Deckert.

In 1994, the Bishop of Innsbruck, Reinhold Stecher, formally prohibited Oxner's veneration by local groups, based on the accrued anti-semitic imagery and beliefs surrounding his cult.[1] This veneration of Oxner was and remains a part of a larger history of accusations of child-murder, host desecration, and cannibalism allegedly committed by Jewish communities, but largely disproven by later scholarship, known as the blood libel.

See also[edit]

See also the articles of other children whose deaths in medieval times gave rise to the persecution of the Jews:

Sources[edit]

  • Rainer Erb: Es hat nie einen jüdischen Ritualmord gegeben. Konflikte um die Abschaffung der Verehrung des Andreas von Rinn. Wien 1989.
  • Bernhard Fresacher: Anderl von Rinn. Ritualmordkult und Neuorientierung in Judenstein 1945–1995. Innsbruck und Wien 1998. ISBN 3-7022-2125-5
  • Andreas Maislinger und Günther Pallaver: « Antisemitismus ohne Juden - Das Beispiel Tirol ». In: Wolfgang Plat (Hg.), Voll Leben und voll Tod ist diese Erde. Bilder aus der Geschichte der Jüdischen Österreicher. Herold Verlag, Wien 1988. ISBN 3-7008-0378-8
  • Ingrid Strobl (de): Anna und das Anderle. Eine Recherche. Frankfurt am Main 1995. ISBN 3-596-22382-2
  • Richard Utz: "Remembering Ritual Murder: The Anti-Semitic Blood Accusation Narrative in Medieval and Contemporary Cultural Memory." In Genre and Ritual: The Cultural Heritage of Medieval Rituals. Ed. Eyolf Østrem. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press/University of Copenhagen, 2005. Pp. 145–62.

References[edit]

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