Corpus Christi [Lat., = body of Christ], feast of the Western Church, observed on the Thursday after Trinity Sunday (or on the following Sunday). The feast, which celebrates the founding of the sacrament of the Eucharist, was established generally in 1264 with an office by St. Thomas Aquinas, which includes the splendid hymn Pange Lingua. In medieval times it was celebrated with pageants and the performance of miracle plays. The anniversary of the institution of the Eucharist by Jesus is on Maundy Thursday.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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