First, I apologize for linking to a pay-per-view. Second, I apologize for a pay-per-view I haven't read. Thirdly, I pray for the souls who write articles that aren't accessible to those who care.
|"Killing or Clemancy" Late 15th Matthew Strickland|
The exact origin or meaning may be unattainable, but one line of thinking suggests that it is an act of submission, as one might expect his hands to be bound when lodging or being led into a strange village. It is an act of vulnerability, but also bravery.
|"Woman Praying" Hans Memling c1485 WikiArt|
|Reinald II of Guelders and Elanor Woodstock (British Library)|
|Is Amesbury Archer praying to the East? Wessex Archaeology|
* This was really more of a manly punch, and a sucker punch at that. I was surprised nonetheless.
Between Representation and Eternity: The Archaeology of Praying in Late Medieval and Post-Medieval times. European Journal of Archaeology. Rainer Atzbach 2015 [Link]
This paper seeks to explore how prayer and praying practice are reflected in archaeological sources. Apart from objects directly involved in the personal act of praying, such as rosaries and praying books, churches and religious foundations played a major role in the medieval system of intercession. At death, an individual's corpse and burial primarily reflect the social act of representation during the funeral. The position of the arms, which have incorrectly been used as a chronological tool in Scandinavia, may indicate an evolution from a more collective act of prayer up to the eleventh century AD to a more individual way of praying in the late and post-medieval periods.