Talk:Rosary/Archive 1

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The Rosary is a string of beads...

Dude its more just than a string of beads... I think this is backwards: rather, the rosary is the prayer and a rosary helps you keep count. Anyone else know for sure? --Ed Poor

The Rosary is a combination of vocal prayer (the Our Fathers & Hail Marys) and of mental prayer, namely, reflection on important events in the life of Christ and His Mother. [1]

I guess the Dominican Fathers agree with me.... --Ed Poor

It is not made clear in the introduction to this article that the Luminous Mysteries are optional and that the faithful are permitted to continue praying the Rosary in the traditional way. Could the introductory text be adjusted to clarify this?

—Preceding unsigned comment added by Mendelivia (talkcontribs) 19:56, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

How about limiting images on this page to the one of the Lady of Lourdes, since it's the only one that contains actual rosary beads? Also on a technical note, the images don't line up properly when viewed with mozilla.... I don't want to describe the problem in detail, just ask that you test the layout in a variety of mainstream browsers at least. Thanks. Wesley

It worked perfectly on all the browsers, including mozilla, when tested. STÓD/ÉÍRE
Hey, it's not too many images for me. I get tired of pure text all the time in an encyclopedia. The more images, the better. I hope the articles on geometry come with diagrams, and the the articles on music come with examples of sheet music I can sit down and play at the piano! --Uncle Ed
Well, I am not a Christian -- which means I am pretty ignorant here, but on the other hand, that is precisely why I want to read an article in an encyclopedia. As far as I can tell, most of these images tell me nothing about the Rosary. I just don't see what they have to do with the article. Surely Ed wouldn't want these pictures on the geometry pages! I would value some pictures of rosaries. Do they all look alike? How different can they be? These would be useful pictures.
I realize I may not understand the point of the pictures. Do CHristians have to look at images of Jesus while doing the rosary? If so, then yes, it would help to have pictures included -- although the article should explain that these are pictures Christians contemplate while saying the rosary. To be honest, my impression was that people do not look at images while saying the rosary -- in that case, to include pictures would be misleading. But maybe I am wrong? Slrubenstein
I uploaded an image of the Anglican Rosary, hopefully at least a little help in showing some of the variance out there. Sherurcij July 1, 2005 08:59 (UTC)

Wesley and Sirub are both wrong. These images are directly linked to the rosary. They are used on rosary websites and rosary publications. They are specific to individual decades of the rosary and were specifically designed to match the decades. I find Sirub's dislike of imagery quite frankly weird. A professionally designed encyclopædia uses plenty of images. It is a basic requirement, that where images can be used they must be used. Any illustrations that highlight or contextualise an article are recommended for use; I know, I have worked for a number of different encyclopiædias and the requested the incorporation of images in newer editions. These particular images, which are free of copyright, were explicitly requested by one publisher of an encylopædia and will be appearing in their next edition. (I have not yet got the publication date; they have me editing copy for their pages on South Africa and President of the United States right now). A professional sourcebook properly laid out incorporates relevant images. As these are images used by catholic publications and rosary publications to match the decades they are 100% relevant, 100% useful. People don't specifically look at a picture of George Bush every time they talk about him; that does not mean you don't use a picture of the guy. These images were used in the 2001 Holy Rosary Calendar. If there is a problem with a browser that can be worked on, though they were placed on the page using mozilla. But removing them would be absurd in the extreme and an act of POV censorship. STÓD/ÉÍRE 21:24 Mar 28, 2003 (UTC)

JTDIRL misunderstands -- I am not at all opposed to using illustrations in an encyclopedia (Perhaps he misunderstands me because he takes differences of opinion -- at least, this one -- personally). I have no problem with illustrative images. As a matter of fact, I have contributed to discussion about images on pages, and have defended images on pages. You are mischaracterizing me based on my issues with only two articles out of hundreds I have worked on -- why?

If Christians agree that the various images in the article are appropriate, I certainly have no objection at all to images here. But, as a non-Christian reader, I do ask for more explanation of how the pictures illustrate the rosary. I recognize that the article makes a first step by associating the images with individual decades. My point is: this is not enough. I'd like to learn more about the relationship between the image, the idea behind the decade, and the specific words of the rosary, in their larger context. JTDIRL, when you say I am wrong, are you refering to my own assertion that "maybe I am wrong?" Please do not misconstrue a constructive question as an attack. Slrubenstein

I am thoroughly confused. Camembert has been rather cheesily (cheekily?) poking holes in my work. Wesley doesn't like my jokes. SLR thinks I'm a Christian, but others think my church isn't Christian. I'm going home to visit my Jewish parents this weekend, and I don't know if they still think I'm Jewish.

All I'm asking for is a diagram of a parabola -- not a picture of Jesus -- to illustrate the conic sections article. Dude! I'd rather be surfing!! --Ed Poor

Where did I call you a Christian?Slrubenstein

As to a greater explanation of what the decades are, etc. that is a perfectly fair point and I will see what I can there. Though as a lapsed catholic who hasn't said the Rosary in twenty something years, I'll have to do some reading around.

BTW, sorry if I sound sharp or anything. Sorry, you could say you caught me on an off day. It is just that this the fourth page I have chased up images for (at considerable time, effort and expense to myself) only to be met either with charges at the images were irrelevant when they were anything but, that I was attempting to POV a page when I had taken great care not to (on one occasion, deliverately cropping an image to remove the slightest hint of POV) or various arguments that frankly I found beggared belief. (And on occasion, some of the charges were made by people with a very strong POV which they seemed to think was NPOV!) A lot of the people who came onto wiki at the same time as me have quit in frustration. Having a historian, a writer, a graphic designer and someone who has had a fanatical interest in wikipedia, I have devoted far more time than I should have to the project and tried to use my stills to better it. At this stage I am seriously on the point of just giving up and quitting STÓD/ÉÍRE 22:24 Mar 28, 2003 (UTC)

Hi Guys, I've cropped the pictures so they should work now without moving out of place. (I'm checking this on Mozilla and it looks OK. Here's hoping.) STÓD/ÉÍRE 00:46 Mar 29, 2003 (UTC)

About the origins, I read somewhere that in India there was a prayer or a device named "garland of roses" and that somehow the Crusaders brought the idea to Europe. I also read that there are similar devices in Islam. -- Error 03:45 May 10, 2003 (UTC)

Is there a place in Wikipedia that speaks of Buddhist rosaries? Andre Engels 16:03, 17 Feb 2004 (UTC)

As you can see below, yes there is, however, I believe using rosary with buddhism is a misnomer. Rosary is a specifically Catholic term used to describe the prayer used with the beads. I believe that prayer beads is more accurate, as I don't believe the buddhists pray the Rosary. ~samba

Yes: Buddhist rosary ~Dpr


Should the structure of the article be revised? E.g. origin first, then mysteries, etc? Thanks! ~Dpr

I'd favor that -- although, since history is my interest, that may just be my bias talking! Other opinions?

    I'd also prefer to see the real history first, then a discussion of the St. Dominic tradition that was believed for so many years (and still is, by some). I'll wait for feedback before I try doing that, though. My reason for suggesting it is that I think it helps people learn if they hear the as-best-we-know-now historical story first, and only then learn about the older story which almost certainly isn't true. Paternoster-Row 03:14, 28 April 2006 (UTC)


I would like to suggest that consider discussing their issues on this Discussion page, rather than deleting the text dealing with non-RC rosaries entirely on their own initiative, and then undoing my revert the next day again. They also deleted 8 paragraphs of text from Pope, and editing Christianity, Jesus, Pope Benedict XVI and other central articles oddly. Sherurcij July 4, 2005 20:26 (UTC)

I find the links to non-Christian rosaries useful, since folks sometimes tell me (a Catholic) that the Catholic Rosary has the same form as the Hindu one or the Buddhist one, etc. On the other hand, perhaps the best link within this article would be to the article on Prayer beads, which is a common category for rosary and the other prayer beads. I think it would be better to have this one link than a series of links to prayer beads that have no particular relation to the rosary. Freder1ck 03:05, 4 November 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck

Eastern Christianity

I am not trying to assert that Matrona's edits/removals regarding Eastern Orthodoxy are incorrect, but I do suspect there may be more information about Eastern prayer practices and similarities with the rosary that could be added. Can anyone add some input on this? Thanks Dpr 03:53, 26 August 2005 (UTC)

Japa Mala?

Is this historical or conjectural? Is there a source or record where it can be verified that Japa Malas where brought by Romans from India? --Jondel 04:00, 21 October 2005 (UTC)

It seems apocryphal and for this reason it's inclusion seems to be in keeping with the anti-Christian bias on wikipedia. 22:17, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

Prayer beads

Moved unsigned comment to bottom --Elliskev 00:29, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

I believe this article does a very poor job since the origin of the rosary is very ancient and it's almost universally found among pagan nations. For example, the rosary was used as a sacred instrument among the ancient Mexicas, as well as Brahmins of Hindustan and in the Buddist faith. Even in ancient Greece, the rosary was used as may be seen from the image of the Ephesian Diana. I could add a lot more to this, and there are many well documented books about the pagan origins of the rosary which later was adopted by the Roman Empire and inherited to the Catholic Church. Had your article talked about it (even a little), it would have been a more creditable source of information on this very interesting object!!!  :-(

I think an expansion of the history of the use of prayer beads would be very interesting. However, there is an article Prayer beads that might be more appropriate. --Elliskev 00:29, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

Many Only Pray 15 Decades

Many Catholics only pray 15 Decades, a view which is not given in this article. There needs to be something that says something like "a large number of Catholics don't pray the Luminous Mysteries and only pray the 15 Traditional Decades as the rosary is meant to complement the 150 psalms with its 150 Hail Marys."

Hello, and welcome! Please sign your comments with four tildes: ~~~~
Feel free to make such an addition as long as it is put in its proper place on the page. JG of Borg 23:59, 29 December 2005 (UTC)
To say "MOST" would be an assertion that you can't prove. It is unverifiable. The rest of your statement doesn't contribute to what "IS" the Rosary. It is a prayer method that was expanded by the Church, through a lawful act of the Pope. Now that was mentioned, remember this is for a layman, not for already practicing Catholics. Perhaps you may approach edits the more subtile way. Dominick (TALK) 00:02, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
I rarely do more than five, and not every day. I'm not sure it really matters for the sake of this article if it's 15 or 20. Of course, that's just my opinion. --Elliskev 01:42, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
I made the following addition more concise: It should also be noted that Catholics who fall into the Traditionalist Catholic category generally believe that the Luminous Mysteries are an illegitimate attempted imposition onto an ancient devotion which was miraculously delivered by the Blessed Virgin Mary to St. Dominic.
Changed to: Some traditionalist Catholics see the Luminous Mysteries as an illegitimate addition to the Rosary.
I'd also like to see a reference for the traditionalist opinion (not that I disagree, but it should be sourced). Freder1ck 19:06, 23 November 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck

single DECADE

It is early here, and my more native language is american. (Thanks ML.) When I get home I will take a digital picture of a finger/rosary ring and upload it. Pardon the crude B+W paint image. This needs to be a simpel article outlining rosaries for people, not a ditribe on "traditional" Rosaries. What you like isn't the point, it is what the Church teaches. Dominick (TALK) 13:55, 30 December 2005 (UTC)


The Knights of Columbus and the other link are being removed because I added them, not because of the merits of the sites. Your inability to read alexa and your animus on me lead you to remove them. Basically this is retaliation for removing linkspam. Dominick (TALK) 15:33, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

Even I give up - I'm just going to revert any linkspam by this user (Malachais111 whatever) as his tactics are reprehensible. JG of Borg 15:44, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
Even though it may not look like it, I think revert wars are not a good way to work. I like the edits we made in the past 24 hours. Even if I can't spell "Decade". I do not like playing the revert game. Dominick (TALK) 15:47, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
I agree. I liked getting the new information in, it was a nice reprieve. JG of Borg 15:48, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
"The Knights of Columbus and other links are being removed because I added them..."
"I'm just goint to revert any 'linkspam' by this user..."
What is the difference? Compare those two pages and tell me why the Fish Eater link shouldn't be included. And don't give me bogus reasons like "Alexa says" when the site has only been at that domain for 4 weeks (look at the old domain and also tell me why that standard doesn't apply to the KofC) or "it's not a national site" or "that one site is an organization and the other is a monograph" after she has said she has 6 editors. Compare the two pages and give me reasons. Malachias111 15:51, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
I hesistate to do this, because I did not mind the link, but you asked.
The Knights of Columbus is an authentic Catholic organization that is considered an "official" source.
It has membership of over 1.7 million people, according to the site.
Fisheaters is a personal website by "6 editors" with a forum of 300 people, according to the site.
You asked. JG of Borg 15:58, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
6 Moderators, not editors. Dominick (TALK) 15:59, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
I agree with Dominick and JG of Borg. Reverting links that have been there for some time and that have been generally accepted just after your own links have been removed looks a bit like disrupting Wikipedia to make a point. And Knights of Columbus is a (much) more significant organization than Fisheaters. Sorry. AnnH (talk) 16:05, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

Why would a traditional Catholic site have as many members or links or whatever as EWTN or the KofC? Traditional Catholicism is a minority religion! But apparently minority religions don't count. You have to have money, be an "official, incorporated organization," or have some secret handshake in order to have any representation at Wikipedia. The links are clearly labelled "traditional Catholic." This is a load of nonsense. Compare the pages and tell me what the problem is. And BTW, the Rosary links to Fish Eaters had been there "for some time," too, until someone got anti-traditional Catholic trigger happy. Malachias111 16:18, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

I haven't been following the discussion at length, so I'm not sure what you mean in saying that Traditional Catholicism is a minority religion. If Traditional Catholics are in union with the Bishop of Rome, then they are Catholics, pure and simple, with certain (lawful) preferences. Or do you mean Catholics who have gone into schism? In any case, the Rosary is predominantly a Catholic prayer, so there is no reason why links to a small traditionalist website would be considered as significant as links to well-known Catholic organizations. AnnH (talk) 16:26, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

The issue is not what fisheaters is, but when links were changed out for better sources, they were reverted anonymously. ALl of them were added anonymously too, even on disambiguation pages. When I looked closer, along with other editors, we found an amazing number of links there. Thats when they claimed a wiki purge. Fisheaters is a "pan-traditionalist" site, but if you don't make faces at the Pope on cue, you are persona non grata. Basically a lot of Sedevacantist, SSPX people and other groups. IMHO, it is in "semi-union" like many vagus groups. ("outside normal structures") I can predict I will now be called a liar. Dominick (TALK) 16:40, 30 December 2005 (UTC)\

The site in question is a pan-traditionalist site for those who attend the indult Mass and those who attend Masses outside normal diocesan structures. It takes no sides and the forum is populated by all kinds of Catholics who fit into all of those categories. The site defends Catholicism in its first section, teaches how to practice traditional Catholicism in the second (how to worship the 1962 Missal and using the old sacrament rites. It gives both the old and new canon laws where they touch on differences so Catholics can know what they are obliged to but what they can voluntarily do, such as fasting requirements). Who is "in schism" is a big issue and there are canon lawyers and Cardinals on all sides of the question with regard to the SSPX, for example.
The site isn't a "small traditionalist website"; it is one of the biggest trad websites out there, but it just moved to its own domain so Alexa isn't reflecting that, and that is what some people are jumping on. Acc. to the RfC on Dominick, it gets more hits than Envoy and Crisis, for ex., and Catholic Answers lows and Fish Eaters highs traffic-wise touch (at the old domain). The site owner said she would even give her password to a trustworthy admin so they can see what the deal is with traffic and referrals. What is going on here is that Dominick and the site creator got into it and he started taking down links. The site owner and others, without any malice, had added links to the site on a LOT of pages (all of the links were totally relevant and page-specific; they weren't links to the main page of the site but more a link to the page on Twelfth Night] in the links for the entry "Twelfth Night". They were all taken down. I have been trying to get official policy about what links are allowed and what aren't, but all the things that people apply to Fish Eaters doesn't apply to other websites. There is a double standard going on and traditional Catholicism isn't being adequately represented. It is being purged. Malachias111 16:37, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
Dominick, quit your slamming. "Faces at the Pope"? What nonsense. Yes, you will be called a liar because you are one. The site owner attends an indult Mass and has said so. Or are you calling her a liar? Malachias111 16:42, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
You really need to read the RFCs to see what Malachias111 is misrepresenting. JG of Borg 16:49, 30 December 2005 (UTC) Malachias111 16:50, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

Try again. JG of Borg 16:52, 30 December 2005 (UTC)
Yeah but everything I say there is a lie too. But if I am lieing then what I just said was true. I have enough juvenile games to deal with at work. Dominick (TALK) 16:52, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

Also see Wikipedia:Requests for comment/Dominick#Update for the reasons why I am personally sceptical of any re-insertion of links to fisheaters. A forum with 6 moderators and 3000 members is not a big forum, and fails to address the issue of whether the site itself is a monograph (forums typically do not allow users to edit content on the associated site). I think the best way to go is wait for settlement of the open RfCs and then, if there is still a dispute, use the dispute resolution procedures. It's not as if there is any pressing hurry to add these links, is there? Unless, of course, the purpose really is to boost the page rank... - Just zis  Guy, you know? [T]/[C] AfD? 17:30, 30 December 2005 (UTC) Note: It's only 300 members. JG of Borg 17:36, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

I think the RfCs are in perpetual RfC status. Maybe it is a counter example of how to file an RfC. I felt like I needed some comments from outside sources on the whole fisheaters linkspam, consensus building, and "wiki war" coordination fron fisheaters site. We got comment, and it seems my problems with that were handled.
Where things went wrong is when some stopped talking about content and started making personal attacks with me at the focus. I really think "Dominick hates this" and "Dominick want to do that" gets old. This is the thing to which the arguement has been reduced. If I had an army of people at my beck and call, to do my will, they would be doing important things, like working on helping me build an empire to rule the Galaxy, maybe then someone would take me seiously and I can get some super-model body guards.
Pardon me for getting off topic. Dominick (TALK) 18:02, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

I will add the traditional days...

I will add the traditional days for praying the mysteries of the rosary, but someone keeps vadalizing my work, which is wrong, evil, bad, sick, disgusting, and againgst the rules.

Sign your comments please. Perhaps we can get a better comprimise. At least you are using the talk pages like we are supposed to. Please check WP:NPA. Dominick (TALK) 17:43, 31 December 2005 (UTC)

Please leave the fisheaters link!

The Fisheaters link is the only link that has the prayers in the traditional language and has the Latin prayers. It also has some good tips on how to pray the rosary and facts about the rosary.StThomasMore 04:53, 1 January 2006 (UTC)

It is a PoV fork. The other pages cover the same issues. The fisheaters link fails to meet Wikipedia criteria. Please see User:Just zis Guy, you know?/Fisheaters Dominick (TALK) 13:38, 1 January 2006 (UTC)
I've added a new latin link to a different website.--Samuel J. Howard 14:43, 1 January 2006 (UTC)
Hopefully this can help avoid an edit war.--Samuel J. Howard 14:58, 1 January 2006 (UTC)

Wearing the Rosary "Sacrilege"

OK, as it is phrased now it is certainly untrue. Rosaries are worn by members of many religious orders as part of their habits.

Furthermore, St. Louis de Montfort writes

"Alphonsus, King of Leon and Galicia, very much wanted all his servants to honor the Blessed Virgin by saying the Rosary. So he used to hang a large rosary on his belt and always wore it, but unfortunately never said it himself. Nevertheless his wearing it encouraged his courtiers to say the Rosary very devoutly."


Furthermore, wearing un unblessed Rosary for a non-religious or even irreligious purpose is not sacrilege in the strict sense:

"Sacrilege is in general the violation or injurious treatment of a sacred object. In a less proper sense any transgression against the virtue of religion would be a sacrilege."


As a non-blessed Rosary is not a sacred object, one cannot commit sacrelige against it in the strict sense, except against the crucifix as a sacred image, though not all rosary's have crosses as opposed to crucifixes. And in that case it's the crucifix being profaned and not the rosary and is no different then someone profaning a beaded necklace with a crucifix on it.

As for whether "many" people think something, that's not really notable, especially when it confusingly suggests something that isn't true.

Alternate wording might be used something like: Some Catholics have been offended by celebrities who have worn rosaries as purely decorative objects.

--Samuel J. Howard 00:49, 4 January 2006 (UTC)

Delisted from GA

I'm delisting this article from GA status because it fails to cite its references, a requirement for GA status (external links aren't references). AndyZ 15:33, 8 January 2006 (UTC)

Missing Info?

  • I was reading through this page and I noticed a tremendous flaw in the article. The first three Hail Marys of the Rosary should be said as follows:
  • 1.Hail Mary full of grace the Lord is with you,
  • blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus,
  • who increases our faith
  • 2.Hail Mary full of grace the Lord is with you,
  • blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus,
  • who strengthens our hope
  • 3.Hail Mary full of grace the Lord is with you,
  • blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus,
  • who perfects our love

REPLY: Where then is Holy Mary Mother of God, pray for us sinners Now and at the hour of our death. Amen??

I also added the punishment article, the information of which I discovered while touring the Medieval Crime and Punishment Museum in Rothenburg, Germany.


I've never seen the above relative clauses, but Pope John Paul II recommended (citing Pope Paul VI as well) the use of relative clauses in the praying of the Rosary (RVM, #33). Hans Urs von Balthasar's book, The Threefold Garland, lists the following relative clauses for the traditional 15 mysteries of the Rosary. According to the English translation, these clauses are customary for public and private recitations of the Rosary in Germanic countries.

Joyous Mysteries Jesus, whom you, O Virgin, conceived of the Holy Spirit Jesus, whom you, O Virgin, took to Elizabeth Jesus, to whom you, O Virgin, gave birth Jesus, whom you, O Virgin, offered up in the temple Jesus, whom you, O Virgin, found again in the temple

Sorrowful Mysteries Jesus, who sweated blood for us Jesus, who was scourged for us Jesus, who was crowned with thorns for us Jesus, who bore the heavy cross for us Jesus, who was crucified for us

Glorious Mysteries Jesus, who rose from the dead Jesus, who ascended into heaven Jesus, who sent us the Holy Spirit Jesus, who took you, O Virgin, up into heaven Jesus, who crowned you, O Virgin, in heaven

I would add a section entitled Relative Clauses, but this page looks contentious enough Freder1ck 20:03, 12 July 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck

Significant Edits

Some substantial edits, aimed at making this a "good" article.

Section by section:

Top: Added a couple of references for Lutheran and Methodist use of the rosary.


  1. I have cut out the supposed derivation from a mistranslation of "japa mala", not because it is provably false - the rosary is a folk practice and its folklore is therefore relevant - but because I couldn't track down any reference on the Net to this false etymology which wasn't obviously derived from this Wikipedia entry (or the one on Prayer Beads). Here is the whole section if anyone wants to restore it with a reference (online or offline) to the false etymology:
It is said that when Roman explorers came into India and encountered the Japa mala, they heard jap mala instead of japa mala. Jap means "rose", and the mala was carried back to the Roman Empire as rosarium, and into English as rosary. However, this etymology seems unlikely because of the dating. According to the 1911 edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica[2], "Thomas of Chantimpre, who wrote about the middle of the 13th century, first mentions the word 'rosary' (De apibus, ii. 13), using it apparently in a mystical sense as Mary's rose-garden." The term was first used in connection with prayer beads in 1597[3], about 300 years later, and more than 1000 years after the fall of the Roman Empire.
  1. I also cut the parallel false etymology of its derivation from the Arabic ward/wird, which I found on the Net somewhere and inserted in the article, but now can't locate.
  1. Added the long quote from the Catholic Encyclopedia on the lesson for the Feast of the Holy Rosary; since this is something to which Catholics are regularly exposed and which is often cited on various rosary sites (such as the Knights of Columbus) and by key figures such as Louis de Montfort, I considered it worth quoting at length as a lead-in to the debunk (which, be it noted, comes from a respected Catholic source rather than a hostile source).
  1. Also replaced the unreferenced summary of the medieval development of the practice with a closer paraphrase of the material from the Catholic Encyclopedia.
  1. Footnoted most of the entries in the table of dates, apart from the first two which refer to other Wikipedia articles. Added a couple more key dates.

Rosary Beads: Removed most of a paragraph which repeated earlier material, and moved (to history) and expanded, and cited a source for the reference to Eastern Orthodox practice.

References: Added any additional references used in the above.

I have not gone through and added references to the rest of the article. Please feel free, and indeed motivated, to do so.


Medieval stuff

I've added and revised some bits based on my knowledge of medieval and Renaissance rosaries. In particular, rosaries have been made from a wide variety of materials, spanning the social spectrum from humble wood and bone to pearls and gold. I've also added a reference to what I think is the single best modern source on the history and development of the rosary. Paternoster-Row 05:04, 12 January 2006 (UTC)


A decade of the rosary I found out is spelt "decade" but I've always heard it pronounced as Dek-et does should we add a pronounciation guide? Chooserr 02:03, 2 February 2006 (UTC)

I've always heard it pronounced 'decade' as in 'DE-cade', which is the regionally normal pronounciation for where I live. So maybe it's a regional thing? How do you normally pronounce 'decade'? Skittle 15:55, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

How to Pray The Rosary

This article has done a great job in describing all the types of Rosaries, and it would be nice to separate the prayer types of the Rosary from the actual meaning of the Rosary and history behind it. Storm Cat 16:12, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

Disputed: As Penance

I note that the claim that "People were often forced to wear extremely large, and heavy Rosary beads around their necks, and forced to stand at the entrance of a cathedral, where they could be ridiculed by the public" does not have a citation from a reliable source. I would definitely want to see concrete evidence before believing this claim. I would particularly like to see evidence that "Victims of this act were often punished for minor sacreligious acts, such as falling asleep in church, not donating enough money during collections, or just skipping church altogether."

I see that the contributor who added this says they heard it while touring "the Medieval Crime and Punishment Museum in Rothenburg, Germany". This source isn't verifiable and I don't think it's reliable either -- there are a good many stories told about the medieval church that turn out to have their basis in the anti-Catholic propaganda of the 16th and 17th centuries rather than in any verifiable account from the Middle Ages. [Footnote: "How Myths are Made" in Witches, Druids, and King Arthur by Ronald Hutton, ISBN #1-85285-397-2]

I am not sure whether this paragraph also violates NPOV. It seems to me that it perpetuates a stereotype about the medieval Roman Catholic Church that is not supported by anything but hearsay.

On the other hand, the second paragraph in this section seems to be both neutral and accurate: "Praying the rosary is often prescribed by priests as a form of penance after confession, though it is notable that penance in this form is usually meant to aid reflection and spiritual growth from sins, not as "punishment" for them." Paternoster-Row 04:08, 28 April 2006 (UTC)

In the absence of any reliable citations, I concur that this claim is completely unverifiable (and difficult to prove or disprove, since the present-day rosary-related penances muddy the search waters). As such, I've removed it from the article altogether. This kind of thing is only one step up from the old flat-earth myth. — Haeleth Talk 10:35, 5 May 2006 (UTC)
Nice catch! Kudos! Dominick (TALK) 12:41, 5 May 2006 (UTC)

Visit from fisheaters people

Dominick, the link you keep adding is to a commercial site. Stop link-spamming. 16:47, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for playing. Dominick (TALK) 19:14, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Symbols, responses

An anon just changed R/ (meaning 'response') in the text to some symbols. However, these are symbols that I, for one, do not have on my computer, so cannot see them. In terms of accessibility, is it better to leave them as the universally visible R/, particularly as we are not necessarily having to conform with the style of a missal? Skittle 09:59, 15 May 2006 (UTC)

These are the characters I used: [4], [5]. I don't know which kinds of computer are unable to display them. 13:36, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

Revert war

Anglicans, Old Catholics, Lutherans, and other non-Roman Catholic Christians use the rosary. There was a bit of a revert battle over whether the use was "rare" or "important." Rather than such unverifiable judgements, I inserted a sentence that said "some" in these denominations use the rosary, which is unarguably true. Reverting this to unverifiable POV language would require some statistical analysis of how widespread the use actually is, which is patently ridiculous. Fishhead64 22:25, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

Some Anglo-Catholics have a bad habit of "glomming on" to anything Catholic thereby giving an false image of the Anglican Communion of which they are a minority party.

I have known countless Episcopalians in my life and none of them prayes the rosary. I doubt that the recent convention of the ECUSA featured a public recitation of the rosary or Eucharistic Adoration or any other Catholic devotion, though God knows they needed to... or maybe they prayed the rosary after their very "Catholic" U2charist.[6] What a disaster! So, let's get off the high horse and live in the real world as we write this encyclopedia. --Vaquero100 00:07, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Your anecdotal evidence doesn't count. I daresay that the evidence from the relatively small ECUSA doesn't count for much either - not that you actually provide any. If you want anecdote, my time in the Caribbean showed that the use of the rosary there was widespread. Since it was missionized by the CMS, with its more Catholic orientation, this should come as no surprise. I would not be surprised to see such piety in other CMS-missionized areas, such as Nigeria and West Africa. So, if you would prefer Wikipedia articles to be in touch with the real world only as it pertains to your expereince of it, fair enough. But there is an Anglican Communion outside that sphere. I agree, let's get off the high horse. Fishhead64 00:32, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Value of the "Young Woman" image

I don't find the "young woman wearing rosary" image to be particularly informative or helpful despite the young lass's attractive appearance. Since such imagery is offensive to some and serves no purpose here, I suggest it be removed. The Uninvited Co., Inc. 02:56, 22 June 2006 (UTC)

I quote from WP:NOT - "Wikipedia may contain some content that some readers consider objectionable or offensive" [7]. Insofar as people do wear the rosary as apparel (including, I would add, members of some religious orders), I think this is a reasonable illustration of a cultural phenomenon, although admittedly her pose could be a little less...oh I don't know. Fishhead64 03:34, 22 June 2006 (UTC)
Pardon me, but this conversation is hilarious. I did not put that image on here, but I do know "that young woman." She's a friend of mine and an exceptionally devout and joyful Catholic. She would roll on the floor with laughter if she knew you thought she was being "suggestive." Let's be a little less Puritan about this; she's wearing a Rosary! --Vaquero100 04:25, 22 June 2006 (UTC)
Oh, maybe I'm just being very repressed. Or thinking about Madonna's various indignities with religious images! Fishhead64 05:39, 22 June 2006 (UTC)

The point I'm trying to make is that the image does nothing to improve the article. And if Vaquero's friend is indeed a devout Catholic wearing the Rosary for prayful reasons, then the image is in the wrong section anyway, because it is in a section on secular use of the rosary as a fashion accessory in popular culture. The Uninvited Co., Inc. 11:33, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

Origin of the rosary

According to the article on Buddhist-Christian parallels, "The use of rosaries spread from India to Europe during the Crusades through the Islamic versions." A short 2-minute google survey led me to the following articles that suggest Indian origins of the rosary:

.. and so on. This widely accepted theory was removed on the grounds that "it seems apocryphal and for this reason it's inclusion seems to be in keeping with the anti-Christian bias on wikipedia." There's something that make facts/theories like this one hard to face for some people. I'd be interested in knowing what is it. I've seen this attitude before lots of times. No one is denying that a few things did originate in Europe, but why so much insecurity? deeptrivia (talk) 23:31, 9 September 2006 (UTC)


Regardless of any feelings that may be involved, there is actually little except various people's assertions to support hypotheses about the origins of the rosary in Europe or who got the idea from whom (or invented it independently, which seems quite possible as well). Older sources such as Eithne Wilkins' Stories of the Rose unhesitatingly attribute the origin to Buddhist or Hindu practice; others suggest desert hermits from the Middle East in the early centuries of Christianity who counted their prayers on pebbles. I have seen Islamic scholars who claim that Moslems got the idea from Christians and not the other way around, although to my knowledge no research on the early history of the islamic rosary has yet been published in English, so I'm not sure how widespread this view is. More recent sources acknowledge our general ignorance about exactly when and where Christian prayer beads originated (though the origin of the modern rosary is somewhat better established from the 1400s forward). There is certainly enough evidence from Europe before the Crusades to at least suggest that the Crusades cannot have been the first Westerners heard of the idea. It seems clear from the doubts expressed in more recent and more scholarly sources such as Stories of the Rose that there are, at the very least, ample grounds for doubting the older origin stories. Paternoster-Row 02:57, 10 September 2006 (UTC)

It would have been useful to mention some of these recent sources that acknowledge this ignorance, because they seem to be hard to find. In any case, even if such theories were completely discarded, it makes sense to mention them as theories that have been proposed in past but disproved in light of new knowledge, instead of completely eliminating them from the article, on the ground that someone suspects them of being "anti-Christian". deeptrivia (talk) 00:36, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

Rosary meaning

In the article this is written: The Rosary (from Latin rosarium, "crown of roses")

that's not correct. From

[Origin: 1350–1400 for earlier sense; 1400–50 for sense “rose garden”; 1540–50 for def. 1; ME rosarie < ML rosārium, in all current senses, L: rose garden, equiv. to ros(a) rose1 + -ārium -ary]

[Middle English, rose garden, from Medieval Latin rosrium, rose garden, rosary, from Latin, rose garden, from neuter of rosrius, of roses, from rosa, rose.]

No where have I seen it mean "crown of roses". I think there is some confusion. The belief is that each Hail Mary said is a rose for Mary and each Rosary completed is a crown of roses to her. Perhaps that's where this confusion came from.

I'm changing the meaning in the article.

It just goes to show that what we read on the web is not always true!

Catholic Encyclopedia says Rosarius means bouquet of roses.--Maria Bernada (talk) 20:28, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Deletion of Fruits

I've just seen that someone deleted the fruits of the mysteries and made the pictures smaller. Both changes seem to me very bad, specially removing the fruits. Just my two cents.

New comments should go down below so folks can find them. I'm all for reverting it back to the way it was. Freder1ck 02:22, 18 November 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck
Sorry for putting this in the wrong place on the first time. Don't know whether I should put it down there now, though. Anyhow, thanks for putting the "fruits" back on, I do think it was a good thing.
I've moved this discussion to the foot of the page. I'm sorry if I was abrupt before. I saw the change and had difficulty finding the comment at first. I should be more hospitable to "newbies," but I'm just learning the etiquitte around here myself. If you are a registered user, you can sign your comments on talk pages by putting four tildes Freder1ck 22:25, 18 November 2006 (UTC) before your username. The fruits are not back yet, but there shouldn't have been removed without some discussion. Freder1ck 22:25, 18 November 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck
No problem at all. As for yesterday, all fruits were there again; someone must have read our discussion and put them back on. All of them remain there by now, minus those of the Joyful Mysteries, can't say why. As for registering, I'm not interested for now, I just write, correct or suggest some things here and there, no need for indentification. Thanks and all.
Now they're gone again. I ain't coming back to discuss this anymore.

I added the fruits back because I noticed that they were gone again. I'll dig up a reference and list that as well so we can get this back towards GA status. Philic1013 05:46, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

The fruits were removed again so I restored them. Roesser 01:13, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Rosary articles

Two articles on the history of the rosary that may be helpful for editing this article:

Freder1ck 19:15, 23 November 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck

---Why is this no longer a good article?----


Ideally, this article should have a subheading discussing criticism of the Rosary from different points of view. For example, Catholic criticism of praying the Rosary during Mass and the proper relationship of devotions to the Liturgy. Also, criticisms of specific Protestant groups: I added the citation at the top to make the criticism of Jesus's teaching on prayer more specific, because in other places (like the beginning and end of Luke 18), the New Testament seems to encourage repetitive prayer. Since the value of Repetitive prayer is debated between Christian and non-Christian groups, perhaps a broad article on repetitive prayer would also be useful. Freder1ck 21:01, 3 December 2006 (UTC)Freder1ck

Citation Style

As is, this page uses embedded citations. See Wikipedia:Embedded citations for guidelines on using this style. For example, it says:

# A separate entry in the References section is required. It should include as much information as possible about the source! If the link breaks, other editors must be able to find still find the source, either as a paper copy or at another URL.

  1. A full citation might include the link, quoted title, author, title of publication, volume, issue, page, the date of publication, and the date retrieved.

I've added footnotes to make it easier to generate the full citation recommended by the Embedded citation page. See Wikipedia:Footnotes. Freder1ck 16:12, 13 January 2007 (UTC)Freder1ck


Over the course of the middle ages, the Lord's Prayer was replaced with the Angelic Salutation, commonly called the Hail Mary.

I believe that the second part of the Hail Mary, i.e. Holy Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, was a later addition, I believe post-Reformation or thereabouts, and the earlier form used throughout the Middle Ages was simply the first part, i.e. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus, what is more specifically the Angelic Salutation (as the second part was not said by the angel). Of course, the title Mother of God is very ancient, so I mean nothing by this other than to point out a possible factual slip. Lostcaesar 08:19, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Rosaries in other Religions

I think the article needs more info about rosaries within other religion like Islam, Buddhism etc.


June 24, 2007

Namaste. The term used for such prayer beads in Buddhism and Hinduism is Japa mala and there is an article about them. My understanding is that the term "rosary" refers specifically to the type of prayer beads used by Catholic Christians, but the term has been applied to similar such beads in other cultures. Buddhipriya

Supportive external links

External links are appropriate, I believe, if they are supportive of the general intent of the article and do not include undue commercial or special interest. Specifically, I wish to add a link to the Perpetual Web Rosary, because it introduces a new way of collaboratively participating in the rosary - a way based on the web itself. It also helps to illustrate the temporal format of the rosary and presents the prayers in other languages providing additional context. The intent of Perpetual Web Rosary site is to promote the rosary as a means of devotion and is totally devoid of any commercial interest. Roesser 18:48, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Leave the meaning as "Rose Garden" (it's not "crown of roses").

Someone changed the meaning of it back to "crown of roses" that's wrong. It's "ROSE GARDEN."

See: for proof.

I again, changed it to reflect the correct meaning of rosarium.

ETA: I found it it was changed her: By: at 17:11, 21 April 2007. please don't change it. Crown of Roses is wrong.

User:BriarRose 07:49, 15 July 2007

Yeah, I just checked it on the OED, which gives it as coming from the Latin "rosarium" or "rose-garden". Carl.bunderson 02:45, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

Josephine Rosary

I remeber seeing a Josephine rosary on EWTN once, which was used for devotion to Joseph. Has anyone else heard of this? Basejumper 19:15, 17 July 2007 (UTC)

Okay I found this: This is a rosary said by the Oblates of St. Joseph that was recently revised and approved by the California province. May be prayed just as Marian rosary, substituting the following prayer for the “Hail Mary”:

Joseph, son of David, and husband of Mary; we honor you, guardian of the Redeemer, and we adore the child you named Jesus. Saint Joseph, patron of the universal church, pray for us, that like you we may live totally dedicated to the interests of the Savior. Amen.

Should we add a section. Basejumper 19:18, 17 July 2007 (UTC)

Computer Software

How appropriate would it be to mention computer software that serves the function of the traditional rosary? EG: Virtual Rosary. (Windows program included in Ubuntu Christian Edition.)


The article contains the words "Previously the Roman Catholic Church has stated that the wearing of the rosary around the neck by both Christian believers and non-believers is very disrespectful." This is followed by the superscription "citation needed". First, what was the statement previous to, and what is the source of this information? And in what sense has "the Roman Catholic Church" said it? Does this mean the Pope said it, or a Cardinal, or an official document, or some parish priest, or a random layman? And how can this be the case when the first sentence of the very same paragraph reads "Wearing of a Rosary that one actually uses to pray is neither uncommon nor sacrilegious in various Catholic-adherent cultures, and was a common practice in the Medieval and Renaissance periods, particularly among monastics (monks and nuns)". There are several problems with the paragraph, but why does the reader need to be told what monastics are?

History of the Rosary

It is clear that there are different sources with different views.

The way Wikipedia works is that when there are competing (and respectable) printed sources, both must be mentioned.

I think we should list both sources and leave it as such. Thanks History2007 (talk) 05:27, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

St. Louis said:

Here is what the learned Carthagena says about it:

The scholarly writer of Aix-la-Chapelle says in his book, The Rose Crown, dedicated to the Emperor Maximilian: "It cannot be maintained that Salutation of Mary is a recent innovation. It spread almost with the Church itself. For at the very beginnings of the Church the more educated members of the faithful celebrated the praises of God in the 150 psalms of David. The ordinary people, who encountered more difficulty in divine service, thus conceived a holy emulation of them.... They considered, which is indeed true, that the heavenly praises of the Rosary contained all the divine secrets of the psalms, for, if the psalms sing of the one who is to come, the Rosary proclaims him as having come.

"That is how they began to call their prayer of 150 Salutations 'The Psalter of Mary,' and to precede each decade with an Our Father, as was done by those who recited the psalms."


Kenelm Digby said:

The rosary, called sometimes the Golden Psalter or the Psalter of the blessed Virgin, is a popular devotion which directs us to the first ages of Christianity ; for, as in the early Church it was the custom for the more perfect Christians to chant the Psalter of David in three divisions of fifty each, so the more simple, who could not read, adopted the Angelic salutation, and repeated it the same number of times, thinking that all the mysteries of the Psalms were contained in it; as this sacred formula pronounced Him whom they foretold to be already come. This was, therefore, called the Psalter of the blessed Virgin ; and that it was used by the ancient fathers of the desert is the general opinion of the learned authors who have treated on it, as Clemens a Lossau and Alanus. From the anchorites it was perpetuated and transmitted to the Benedictine monks. Bede, who died in 733, attests that in his time this sacred mode of praying prevailed through all England and France. The beads used to be suspended with veneration in churches and public places, for the accommodation of all who wished to use them. We read of St. Eloy [lived c.588-660], that, "for a certain devout lady he made a chair adorned with one hundred and fifty gold and silver nails, that by the signs of the nails she might repeat the Psalter of blessed Mary." St. Dominick, therefore, in the thirteenth century, did but revive and propagate a mode of devotion which dates from the earliest times of the Church.


Here is my thoughts between the paragraphs of the current history section:

There are differing views on the exact history of the rosary. Some histories of the rosary attribute its origin to Saint Dominic through the Blessed Virgin Mary.[2] Our Lady of the Rosary is the title received by the Marian apparition to Saint Dominic in 1208 in the church of Prouille in which the Virgin Mary gave the rosary to him. However, other sources dispute this attribution and suggest that its roots were in the preaching of Alan de Rupe between 1470-1475, and suggest that Saint Dominic had nothing to do with the rosary.[3] And there are sources which try to seek a middle ground to these two views.[4]

  • "Roots were in preaching of Alan de Rupe" is misleading; the Catholic Encyclopedia said that The Rosary (150 Aves) were developed before St. Dominic. It also was practiced by St. Albert the Great who came before Bl Alan.

Prayers with beads like the rosary may have begun as a practice by the laity to imitate the monastic Liturgy of the Hours, during the course of which the monks prayed the 150 Psalms daily. As many of the laity and even lay monastics could not read, they substituted 150 Our Fathers for the Psalms, sometimes using a cord with knots on it to keep an accurate count.[5] Over the course of the Middle Ages, the Our Father was replaced by the Hail Mary.[5] The 150 Hail Marys were divided into fifteen decades of ten Hail Marys. Each decade was preceded by an Our Father and followed by a Gloria Patri, further mirroring the structure of the monastic Liturgy of the Hours.

  • It was not followed by a Gloria Patri at first; it does not appear in the Rosary book by Luis de Granada, and St. Louis-Marie de Montfort suggested doing it in his Secret of the Rosary and Mary Barbour the translator in a footnote said that Gloria Patri in Rosary probably came from St. Louis-Marie de Montfort.

From the 16th to the early 20th century, there were no changes in the Rosary.[5]

  • There was change in the Rosary (St. Louis-Marie suggesting Gloria Patri)

There were fifteen mysteries, one for each of the fifteen decades. In the 20th century the addition of the Fatima Prayer to the end of each decade became popular. There were no other changes until 2002 when John Paul II instituted five optional new Luminous Mysteries.—Preceding unsigned comment added by Maria Bernada (talkcontribs) 17:09, April 18, 2008

Thank you for posting this here. I'll repond briefly.
  • While Albert the Great was using some type of prayer that used the repetition of 150 Hail Marys, that does not suggest that he was using the same form of the rosary that was established by the 15th century. I will go throug the article and try to flesh out the early development more fully.
  • When the Gloria Patri was introduced into the Rosary should be added to the article. Do you have a citation for a date? (It needs to be a secondary source citation, i.e., not a primary source like of one of the writings of St. Louis de Montfort.) Dgf32 (talk) 17:56, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

Copying and Pasting what the Catholic Encyclopedia say about the Rosary

Thus we read in the "Ancient Customs of Cluny", collected by Udalrio in 1096, that when the death of any brother at a distance was announced, every priest was to offer Mass, and every non-priest was either to say fifty psalms or to repeat fifty times the Paternoster ("quicunque sacerdos est cantet missam pro eo, et qui non est sacerdos quinquaginta psalmos aut toties orationem dominicam", P. L., CXLIX, 776). Similarly among the Knights Templar, whose rule dates from about 1128, the knights who could not attend choir were required to say the Lord's Prayer 57 times in all and on the death of any of the brethren they had to say the Pater Noster a hundred times a day for a week.

To count these accurately there is every reason to believe that already in the eleventh and twelfth centuries a practice had come in of using pebbles, berries, or discs of bone threaded on a string. It is in any case certain that the Countess Godiva of Coventry (c. 1075) left by will to the statue of Our Lady in a certain monastery "the circlet of precious stones which she had threaded on a cord in order that by fingering them one after another she might count her prayers exactly" (Malmesbury, "Gesta Pont.", Rolls Series 311). Another example seems to occur in the case of St. Rosalia (A. D. 1160), in whose tomb similar strings of beads were discovered. Even more important is the fact that such strings of beads were known throughout the Middle Ages -- and in some Continental tongues are known to this day -- as "Paternosters". The evidence for this is overwhelming and comes from every part of Europe. Already in the thirteenth century the manufacturers of these articles, who were known as "paternosterers", almost everywhere formed a recognized craft guild of considerable importance. The "Livre des métiers" of Stephen Boyleau, for example, supplies full information regarding the four guilds of patenôtriers in Paris in the year 1268, while Paternoster Row in London still preserves the memory of the street in which their English craft-fellows congregated. Now the obvious inference is that an appliance which was persistently called a "Paternoster", or in Latin fila de paternoster, numeralia de paternoster, and so on, had, at least originally, been designed for counting Our Fathers. This inference, drawn out and illustrated with much learning by Father T. Esser, O.P., in 1897, becomes a practical certainty when we remember that it was only in the middle of the twelfth century that the Hail Mary came at all generally into use as a formula of devotion.

  • This is untrue; in the 7th century already St. Eligius wrote that he made a counting apparatus for someone to pray the Psalter of the Blessed Mary.
It is morally impossible that Lady Godiva's circlet of jewels could have been intended to count Ave Marias.
  • It is not morally impossible, as explained above.

Hence there can be no doubt that the strings of prayerbeads were called "paternosters" because for a long time they were principally employed to number repetitions of the Lord's Prayer.

When, however, the Hail Mary came into use, it appears that from the first the consciousness that it was in its own nature a salutation rather than a prayer induced a fashion of repeating it many times in succession, accompanied by genuflexions or some other external act of reverence. Just as happens nowadays in the firing of salutes, or in the applause given to a public performer, or in the rounds of cheers evoked among school-boys by an arrival or departure, so also then the honour paid by such salutations was measured by numbers and continuance. Further, since the recitation of the Psalms divided into fifties was, as innumerable documents attest, the favourite form of devotion for religious and learned persons, so those who were simple or much occupied loved, by the repetition of fifty, a hundred, or a hundred and fifty were salutations of Our Lady, to feel that they were imitating the practice of God's more exalted servants.

  • The author amazingly doesn't say that the reason the Ave Maria was substituted for the Psalms is because the Ave Maria sings of Him Who has already come, instead of Who is yet to come as the Psalms of David does.

In any case it is certain that in the course of the twelfth century and before the birth of St. Dominic, the practice of reciting 50 or 150 Ave Marias had become generally familiar. The most conclusive evidence of this is furnished by the "Mary-legends", or stories of Our Lady, which obtained wide circulation at this epoch. The story of Eulalia, in particular, according to which a client of the Blessed Virgin who had been wont to say a hundred and fifty Aves was bidden by her to say only fifty, but more slowly, has been shown by Mussafia (Marien-legenden, Pts I, ii) to be unquestionably of early date.

  • I searched St. Eulalia and she must be either from 4th or 3rd century. St. Eulalia of Barcelona died in c. 303, and Eulalia of Merida died in c. 251. "The rosary should also be said with devotion; and here we may call to mind what the Blessed Virgin said to Saint Eulalia, 'that she was better pleased with five decades, said slowly and devoutly, than with fifteen, said in a hurry, and with little devotion. " From the Glories of Mary
  • "A devout young nun recited every day the complete Rosary of fifteen decades, but with little devotion, on account of its length. One day the Blessed Virgin appeared to her and told her to recite only the third part of it. “For,” said she, “a few prayers said fervently are more acceptable to my Son and to me, than many said negligently and without devotion.”"

from: [8] Perhaps this devout young nun was the same as Eulalia, who was then obviously not the St. Eulalia of 3rd or 4th century who were not nuns.

Not less conclusive is the account given of St. Albert (d. 1140)

by his contemporary biographer, who tells us: "A hundred times a day he bent his knees, and fifty times he prostrated himself raising his body again by his fingers and toes, while he repeated at every genuflexion: 'Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb'." This was the whole of the Hail Mary as then said, and the fact of all the words being set down rather implies that the formula had not yet become universally familiar. Not less remarkable is the account of a similar devotional exercise occurring in the Corpus Christi manuscripts of the Ancren Riwle. This text, declared by Kölbing to have been written in the middle of the twelfth century (Englische Studien, 1885, P. 116), can in any case be hardly later than 1200. The passage in question gives directions how fifty Aves are to be said divided into sets of ten, with prostrations and other marks of reverence. (See The Month, July, 1903.) When we find such an exercise recommended to a little group of anchorites in a corner of England, twenty years before any Dominican foundation was made in this country, it seems difficult to resist the conclusion that the custom of reciting fifty or a hundred and fifty Aves had grown familiar, independently of, and earlier than, the preaching of St. Dominic.

On the other hand, the practice of meditating on certain definite mysteries, which has been rightly described as the very essence of the Rosary devotion, seems to have only arisen long after the date of St. Dominic's death. It is difficult to prove a negative, but Father T. Esser, O.P., has shown (in the periodical "Der Katholik", of Mainz, Oct., Nov., Dec., 1897) that the introduction of this meditation during the recitation of the Aves was rightly attributed to a certain Carthusian, Dominic the Prussian. It is in any case certain that at the close of the fifteenth century the utmost possible variety of methods of meditating prevailed, and that the fifteen mysteries now generally accepted were not uniformly adhered to even by the Dominicans themselves. (See Schmitz, "Rosenkranzgebet", p. 74; Esser in "Der Katholik for 1904-6.) To sum up, we have positive evidence that both the invention of the beads as a counting apparatus and also the practice of repeating a hundred and fifty Aves cannot be due to St. Dominic, because they are both notably older than his time. Further, we are assured that the meditating upon the mysteries was not introduced until two hundred years after his death. What then, we are compelled to ask, is there left of which St. Dominic may be called the author?

These positive reasons for distrusting the current tradition might in a measure be ignored as archaeological refinements, if there were any satisfactory evidence to show that St. Dominic had identified himself with the pre-existing Rosary and become its apostle. But here we are met with absolute silence. Of the eight or nine early Lives of the saint, not one makes the faintest allusion to the Rosary. The witnesses who gave evidence in the cause of his canonization are equally reticent. In the great collection of documents accumulated by Fathers Balme and Lelaidier, O.P., in their "Cartulaire de St. Dominique" the question is studiously ignored. The early constitutions of the different provinces of the order have been examined, and many of them printed, but no one has found any reference to this devotion. We possess hundreds, even thousands, of manuscripts containing devotional treatises, sermons, chronicles, Saints' lives, etc., written by the Friars Preachers between 1220 and 1450; but no single verifiable passage has yet been produced which speaks of the Rosary as instituted by St. Dominic or which even makes much of the devotion as one specially dear to his children. The charters and other deeds of the Dominican convents for men and women, as M. Jean Guiraud points out with emphasis in his edition of the Cartulaire of La Prouille (I, cccxxviii), are equally silent. Neither do we find any suggestion of a connection between St. Dominic and the Rosary in the paintings and sculptures of these two and a half centuries. Even the tomb of St. Dominic at Bologna and the numberless frescoes by Fra Angelico representing the brethren of his order ignore the Rosary completely.

Impressed by this conspiracy of silence, the Bollandists, on trying to trace to its source the origin of the current tradition, found that all the clues converged upon one point, the preaching of the Dominican Alan de Rupe about the years 1470-75. He it undoubtedly was who first suggested the idea that the devotion of "Our Lady's Psalter" (a hundred and fifty Hail Marys) was instituted or revived by St. Dominic. Alan was a very earnest and devout man, but, as the highest authorities admit, he was full of delusions, and based his revelations on the imaginary testimony of writers that never existed (seeQuétif and Echard, "Scriptores O.P.", 1, 849).

  • This raises some questions:
  • 1. Why would God want to do an immense good by means of delusions and especially by delusions of false apparitions? It is written that St. Dominic appeared to Bl. Alan to encourage him to preach the Rosary, etc, but according to this article St. Dominic had nothing to do with the Rosary.
  • 2. If it was the devil deluding Alan (For God is the truth and it seems that he wouldn't make use of falsehood to promote good), why would the devil be promoting the Rosary?
  • 3. If it actually were genuine apparitions, then why is there a silence about the Rosary among the early Dominicans? Even St. Thomas Aquinas, who was an early Dominican, doesn't write about the Rosary (at least I don't think so; although it seems that St. Albert the Great his teacher prayed the 150 Aves, but there is a question of whether the St. Albert mentioned above is St. Albert the Great), although he talks about the individual prayers involved.

But Bl. Alan might not have even written those things which are seen as unhistorical, because the article about Bl. Alan says:

Alanus published nothing during his lifetime, but immediately after his death the brethren of his province were commanded to collect his writings for publication. These were edited at different times and have occasioned much controversy among scholars.


His preaching, however, was attended with much success. The Rosary Confraternities, organized by him and his colleagues at Douai, Cologne, and elsewhere had great vogue, and led to the printing of many books, all more or less impregnated with the ideas of Alan. Indulgences were granted for the good work that was thus being done and the documents conceding these indulgences accepted and repeated, as was natural in that uncritical age, the historical data which had been inspired by Alan's writings and which were submitted according to the usual practice by the promoters of the confraternities themselves. It was in this way that the tradition of Dominican authorship grew up. The first Bulls speak of this authorship with some reserve: "Prout in historiis legitur" says Leo X in the earliest of all. "Pastoris aeterni" 1520; but many of the later popes were less guarded.Maria Bernada (talk) 14:20, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

You do make a good point, namely that St. Eligius used an apparatus for counting Hail Marys in the 7th century. I included that in my rewrite of the section. Dgf32 (talk) 17:25, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
I saw that. Thanks.Maria Bernada (talk) 22:38, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
With regard to your comments on Bl. Alanus de Rupe, it is important to note what exactly Wikipedia is. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia that seeks to include articles about notable subjects based on verifiable citations of reliable sources. Original Research may not be included in Wikipedia. If you wish to make an analysis of the primary sources yourself, there are many places to publish such work; however, Wikipedia is not one of them. (Please see WP:No Original Research). Theological analysis of the primary sources also can not be relied upon to determine Wikipedia's content. Your questions about why God or the devil might or might not have caused Bl. Alan to have delusions are far beyond the scope of the type of content included on Wikipedia. Again, I encourage you to read the core Wikipedia policies of WP:No Original Research, WP:Verifiability, and WP:Neutral Point of View. If you would like to propose a modified section of the text, please do so. Dgf32 (talk) 17:25, 21 April 2008 (UTC
Ok, Thanks.Maria Bernada (talk) 22:38, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Interesting info:

The phrase "fraternitatis Rosarij virginis mariae" (confraternity of the Rosary of the Virgin Mary) appears in De dignitate et utilitate psalterii praecelsae ac intemeratae semper virginis Mariae by Blessed Alanus de Rupe (Alain de la Roche), on second paragraph of Table of Contents in page 12 (which page is the beginning of the book), printed in 1498 [10]


The book is highly illegible because of abbreviations. Maria Bernada (talk) 22:39, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Rosary Beads

The statement that it is "common" for beads to be made of precious material is just untrue. E.g. of the Over 20 million free rosaries distributed worldwide, perhaps 19 million are cheap plastic beads. Demand for free rosaries is really high worldwide and the number of precious beads is just negligable. I think the fact that there is really high demand for cheap rosaries would be nice to add somewhere. History2007 (talk) 16:10, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

The current articles says:

The beads can be made from a wide variety of materials including wood, bone, glass, crushed flowers, semi-precious stones such as agate, jet, amber, or jasper, or precious materials including coral, crystal, silver, and gold. Rosaries are sometimes made from the seeds of the "rosary pea" or "bead tree". Modern beads are most often glass, resin (plastic), or wood. Early rosaries were strung on strong thread, often silk, but modern ones are more often made as a series of chain-linked beads.

It says modern beads are most often "glass, plastic, or wood." But i'll make an addition in the article to that effect. Dgf32 (talk) 16:32, 18 April 2008 (UTC)
Do you have any sources for the number of free rosaries made and distributed annually? It would be good to add a sentence or two on the free rosary organizations. Where are they distributed, how many, etc. Dgf32 (talk) 16:51, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

Please see the web page for Our Lady's Rosary Makers. I have seen their brochure and it says that they send out about 7 million or so rosaries per year. The way they get distributed is totally non-deterministic in that they have thousands of members and thousands of churches, missions etc. post requests. The members make and send them as they see fit. The organization just prints the newsletter to let the members contact the missions. So it is based on request and demand. And there are more requests than can be met, based on their brochures. I think you can ask them for a brochure or look online at their page for more info. Cheers History2007 (talk) 17:59, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

Bring back to GA status

I would love to see this brought back to GA status. Anyone else like to help on this project?

Also, I noticed this talk page is really long. Anyone disagree if I archive it?--DizFreak talk Contributions 18:24, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

I'd be glad to help. And please do archive this page. Dgf32 (talk) 18:57, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Rosary and Chaplet meaning

Chaplet also means 5 decades of the Rosary. 3. Roman Catholic Church. a. a string of beads, one-third of the length of a rosary, for counting prayers. b. the prayers recited over this. [12]

Also, Catholic Encyclopedia says Rosarius means bouquet of roses, so I think Rosarius should be in the article as well as Rosarium. --Maria Bernada (talk) 18:18, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

"As regards the origin of the name, the word rosarius means a garland or bouquet of roses [3], and it was not unfrequently used in a figurative sense—e.g. as the title of a book, to denote an anthology or collection of extracts. An early legend which after traveling all over Europe penetrated even to Abyssinia connected this name with a story of Our Lady, who was seen to take rosebuds from the lips of a young monk when he was reciting Hail Marys and to weave them into a garland which she placed upon her head. A German metrical version of this story is still extant dating from the thirteenth century. The name "Our Lady's Psalter" can also be traced back to the same period. Corona or chaplet suggests the same idea as rosarium. The old English name found in Chaucer and elsewhere was a "pair of beads", in which the word beads (q.v.) originally meant prayers." --Maria Bernada (talk) 01:52, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

How the Rosary ought to be said

  • I propose adding this section to the article.

St. Louis-Marie says emphasizes the importance of praying the Rosary slowly "Dear friends of the Confraternity, I beg you to restrain your natural precipitation when saying your Rosary, and make some pauses in the middle of the Our Father and Hail Mary [Between the beads], and a smaller one after the words of the Our Father and Hail Mary which I have marked with a cross, as follows [Between the phrases within the prayers]: Our Father who art in heaven, + hallowed by thy name, + thy kingdom come, + thy will be done + on earth as it is in heaven. + Give us this day + our daily bread, + and forgive us our trespasses + as we forgive those who trespass against us, + and lead us not into temptation, + but deliver us from evil. Amen. +

Hail, Mary, full of grace, + the Lord is with thee, + blessed art thou among women, + and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. +

Holy Mary, Mother of God, + pray for us sinners, now + and at the hour of our death. Amen. +

At first, you may find it difficult to make these pauses because of your bad habit of saying prayers in a hurry; but a decade said recollectedly in this way will be worth more than thousands of Rosaries said in a hurry, without pausing or reflecting. [Pausing to reflect is very important] [13]

Maria Bernada (talk) 18:18, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Remember that this is an encyclopedic article about the Rosary, not an instruction manual or a how-to guide on how to say the Rosary. (See WP:NOT). Telling the reader how something is used is encyclopedic, telling how to use something is not. If you are interested in writing a how-to style manual, you may want to look at Dgf32 (talk) 20:20, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
Ok, thanks for the info.

I propose something like this based on the below information: *It is recorded in Mary-legends (Marien-legenden) in 12th century that a certain Eulalia was told to pray five decades slowly and devoutly instead of fifteen decades in a hurry.

"In any case it is certain that in the course of the twelfth century and before the birth of St. Dominic, the practice of reciting 50 or 150 Ave Marias had become generally familiar. The most conclusive evidence of this is furnished by the "Mary-legends", or stories of Our Lady, which obtained wide circulation at this epoch. The story of Eulalia, in particular, according to which a client of the Blessed Virgin who had been wont to say a hundred and fifty Aves was bidden by her to say only fifty, but more slowly, has been shown by Mussafia (Marien-legenden, Pts I, ii) to be unquestionably of early date." [14]

"The great collections of Mary-legends which began to be formed in the early years of the twelfth century (see Mussafia, "Marien-legenden") show us that this salutation of our Lady was fast becoming widely prevalent as a form of private devotion, though it is not quite certain how far it was customary to include the clause "and blessedis the fruit of thy womb". [15]

  • I searched St. Eulalia and found St. Eulalia of Barcelona died in c. 303, and St. Eulalia of Merida died in c. 251. "The rosary should also be said with devotion; and here we may call to mind what the Blessed Virgin said to Saint Eulalia, 'that she was better pleased with five decades, said slowly and devoutly, than with fifteen, said in a hurry, and with little devotion. " From the Glories of Mary
  • "A devout young nun recited every day the complete Rosary of fifteen decades, but with little devotion, on account of its length. One day the Blessed Virgin appeared to her and told her to recite only the third part of it. “For,” said she, “a few prayers said fervently are more acceptable to my Son and to me, than many said negligently and without devotion.”"

from: [16] Perhaps this devout young nun was the same as Eulalia, who was then obviously not the St. Eulalia of 3rd or 4th century who were not nuns.--Maria Bernada (talk) 21:01, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Interesting information found in "Hail Mary" article of the Catholic Encyclopedia

Of St. Aybert, in the twelfth century, it is recorded that he recited 150 Hail Marys daily, 100 with genfluctions and 50 with prostrations. So Thierry tells us of St. Louis of France that "without counting his other prayers the holy King knelt down every evening fifty times and each time he stood upright then knelt again and repeated slowly an Ave Maria."


Thierry is probably this one:

St. Aybert is St. Aibert, a benedictine: --Maria Bernada (talk) 01:50, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

I propose the following to replace the current sentence about St. Aibert.

It is recorded that St. Aibert, who died in 1140, recited 150 Hail

Marys daily, 100 with genuflexions and 50 with prostrations. [18] --Maria Bernada (talk) 03:42, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

No need to debate it. It is a good source and can just go in the article. History2007 (talk) 04:19, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Chaplet also means 5 decades of Rosary

Chaplet also means 5 decades of the Rosary. "3. Roman Catholic Church. a. a string of beads, one-third of the length of a rosary, for counting prayers. b. the prayers recited over this." [19]

How should I put this? --Maria Bernada (talk) 23:33, 30 April 2008 (UTC)