Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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(491 words)

Author(s): Link, Christoph
[German Version] Following episcopalism (I) and territorialism, collegialism was the latest of the three 17th- and 18th century theories on the origin and legitimation of vesting ecclesiastical authority of prince in the Protestant territories of the German Empire. The early collegialists (C.M. Pfaff, L. v. Mosheim) were concerned to limit the comprehensive claim to the prince's authority over religious matters as an aspect of public order asserted …


(365 words)

Author(s): Neuner, Peter
[German Version] It was Cyprian of Carthage who first used the term collegium for the collective episcopate ( Ep. 68, c. 254/255). The expression recalls the college of the Twelve in the New Testament and establishes communion among the bishops as leaders of their particular churches, thus guaranteeing the unity of the universal church (Church unity). Bishops were to be consecrated (Bishop, Consecration of) by at least three bishops as representatives of the collegium. With the development of papal primacy, the notion of collegiality receded into the backgroun…

Collegiate Chapter

(556 words)

Author(s): Schneidmüller, Bernd
[German Version] In 755/756, early medieval communities of clerics were given their first structural guidelines in the rule of Bishop Chrodegang of Metz, who used the apostolic lifestyles as prototypes of choir office and community life. The Institutio canonicorum promulgated in 816 at Aachen by Louis I, the Pious established the distinction between monastic communities and canonical communities. Collegiate chapters consisted of secular clerics who had often only taken the minor vows (Consecration/Ordination/Dedication: I) and who initially lived a communal life ( vita …

Collegium Urbanum de Propaganda Fide

(201 words)

Author(s): Henkel, Willi
[German Version] The Collegium Urbanum was founded by Urban VIII with the papal bull “Immortalis Dei” on Aug 1, 1627, with the purpose of training priests to disseminate the Catholic faith around the world. The initial means were provided by the Spanish prelate Juan Bautista Vives (1545–1632), who gave the Ferratini palace on the Piazza di Spagna to the Congregation (Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith) as a gift to the seminary in 1626. He bequeathed h…

Collenbusch, Samuel

(313 words)

Author(s): Meyer, Dietrich
[German Version] (Sep 1, 1724 Barmen-Wichlinghausen – Sep 1, 1803 Barmen) studied medicine in Duisburg and Strasbourg from 1745, and practiced medicine in Duisburg after 1754, where he also ran a refinery, and, from 1783, in Barmen and Schwelm. He received the Dr. med. in 1789. Coming to faith in the home of his Lutheran parents and under the influence of pastor Peter Wülfing (died1757), in 1760 he became acquainted with F.C. Oetinger's theosophy and J.A.Bengel's…

Collins, Anthony

(154 words)

Author(s): Pailin, David Arthur
[German Version] (Jun 21, 1676, Heston, Middlesex – Dec 13, 1729, London) was highly regarded by J. Locke as a prominent English Free thinker. His works evoked considerable hostility and in some cases numerous replies since they challenged the ratio¶ nal status of orthodox belief. An Essay concerning the Use of Reason (1707) rejects the distinction between matters above reason and those that are contrary to reason. A Discourse of Freethinking (1713) asserts that free enquiry is the right path to discern the truth and attacks clerical claims to authority. A Philosophical Inqui…

Colloredo, Hieronymus Graf von

(307 words)

Author(s): Decot, Rolf
[German Version] (May 31, 1732, Vienna – May 20, 1812, ibid.) was the last prince-archbishop of Salzburg. His family (his father, and later his brother, were imperial vice-chancellors) secured his accession to ecclesiastical positions from early on: cathedral canon in Salzburg in 1747, auditor of the Rota in Rome in 1759, bishop of Gurk by appointment of Maria Theresia in 1761. In the latter function, his administration was marked by reform-Catholic tendencies. Elected a…


(1,945 words)

Author(s): Koch, Guntram | Klueting, Ham
[German Version] I. Archaeology – II. City and Diocese – III. University I. Archaeology Evidence that Cologne was a particularly flourishing city in the 2nd and early 3rd centuries includes remains of the city wall, aqueduct, sewers, and praetorium, mosaic floors and mural paintings from private houses, several tombs, and a great variety of small artworks. Famous is the 3rd-century Dionysus Mosaic in the Römisch- Germanisches Museum, still to be seen in situ in the ceremonial room of a large house within the city walls. There is evidence of Christianity in…

Cologne Cathedral

(766 words)

Author(s): Nicolai, Bernd
[German Version] Holding the right to crown German kings, the archdiocesan cathedral church of St. Peter and St. Mary was, together with Mainz, the most important metropolitan see of the Holy Roman Empire. The monumental buildings erected from the 6th century onward (structures I–II) met high standards. These standards were raised even further with the new building begun in 1248. Though the latter was not completed during the Middle Ages, it remains the most impo…

Cologne Church Dispute/Cologne Troubles

(11 words)

[German Version] Prussian Church Dispute

Cologne Declaration

(249 words)

Author(s): Werbick, Jürgen
[German Version] The Cologne Declaration was drawn up by an initiator group in Cologne on Jan 5, 1989 and subsequently signed by more than 200 professors of theology in the German-speaking realm; it sparked off fierce and still ongoing controversies within the Catholic Church. Taking up on the dispute caused by the appointment of the new archbishop of Cologne, the declaration expresses disapproval of an ecclesiastical centralism that ignores local situations and …


(1,478 words)

Author(s): Bidegáin, Ana Maria
[German Version] The Republic of Colombia, in northwestern South America, gained its independence in 1810/1819, and was named after Christopher Columbus by S. Bolivar. The previous Spanish colony of New Grenada had received the status of a viceroyalty in the 18th century. Its population in 2003 was 44 million. The capital, Santafé de Bogotá, has a population of 6,500,000; other urban centers include Medellín (3,900,000), Cali (3,600,000), and Barranquilla (2,000,000). The ethnic composition of its population is 64% mestizo, 20% Afro-Colombian, 15% Caucasian, and 1% Indian. At the…

Colonialism and Mission

(4,130 words)

Author(s): Koschorke, Klaus | Kamphausen, Erhard
[German Version] I. History – II. Missiology I. History 1. Preliminary remarks As never before in its history, Christianity has become a “world religion.” Since the middle of the 1980s, the majority of the Christian population of the world no longer lives in the northern, but in the southern hemisphere. This development is the consequence of significant demographic shifts and of the differing growth dynamics of the churches of the North and the South. At the same time, most…


(934 words)

Author(s): Rothermund, Dietmar
[German Version] I. Forms of Domination and Their Justification – II. The Career of European Colonialism I. Forms of Domination and Their Justification Colonialism is a form of domination in which peoples are subjected to foreign rule and denied the right of self-determination. Colonies already existed in the ancient world – for example those of the Phoenicians and Greeks around the Mediterranean. It would be wrong to speak of colonialism in this context; the same is true of the modern colonial …

Colonna, Vittoria

(185 words)

Author(s): Weinhardt, Joachim
[German Version] (1490, Marino – Feb 25, 1547, Rome), poet, born into the powerful noble Colonna family. In 1509 she married the Marchese di Pescara; her early poems glorify her husband as a heroic Christian warrior. The poems composed after his death in 1525 are dominated by the themes of contempt for the world, longing for heaven, and suffering (her own and that of Christ) as the way to salvation. A few ascetic works exemplify passion mysticism. Wherever she wa…

Colored Methodist Episcopal Church

(12 words)

[German Version] Christian Methodist Episcopal Church


(569 words)

Author(s): Stolz, Fritz | Saliers, Don E.
[German Version] I. Comparative Religion – II. Liturgy I. Comparative Religion Individual cultures perceive colors and assign religious values to them in very different ways. A distinction is often made between colors and “non-colors”: white and black represent non-life (death, transitions in general), and are therefore regarded as the colors of mourning, but also of weddings and feasts, and this not only in Europe. Red is often associated with blood, and accordingly also with…


(1,113 words)

Author(s): Aletti, Jean-Noël
[German Version] I. Introductory Questions – II. Religio-historical Background – III. Theological Significance I. Introductory Questions Colossians bears the characteristcs of a letter, as the framework shows (prescript 1:1–2, postscript 4:7–18). After a longer exordium (1:3–23), which concludes with a partitio announcing the themes to be discussed (1:21–23), the body of the letter takes up these themes in reverse order: A (1:24–2:5), Paul's struggles on behalf of the gospel; B (2:6–23), faithfulness to the gospel he has received; C (3:1–4:6), the holiness of the faithful. Th…


(209 words)

Author(s): Grundmann, Christoffer H.
[German Version] from French colportage (“peddling”), refers to a particular method of spreading the Bible and other religious texts through the sale of inexpensive Bibles from door to door by (mostly Protestant) colporteurs, often at great personal sacrifice. The first colportage societies were founded in Scotland (Edinburgh Tract Society, 1796) and England (Religious Tract ¶ Society, 1799; British and Foreign Bible Society, 1804), followed by Germany (i.a. Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 1804; Württembergische Bibelanstalt, 1812; Wuppert…

Coltrane, John

(196 words)

Author(s): Mohr, Burkhard
[German Version] (Sep 23, 1926 Hamlet, NC – Jul 17, 1967 Huntington, NY). As a young man, Coltrane was already playing clarinet and saxophone in a band, and he went on to study music with enthusiasm, developing into a top saxophone player in the early free jazz style. After a period working with Miles Davies and Thelonius Monk, among others, in 1960 he formed his internationally famous quartett (LPs: A Love Supreme, Blue Train; Successful hit: “My Favorite Things”). Coltrane kept faith with his Protestant origins all his life, although many of his music…
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