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Wilhelmites

(290 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The Wilhelmite order goes back to a hermitage (Monasticism: III) founded in Tuscany in the mid-12th century. Its founder is said to have been a French noble named Wilhelm, a former soldier who settled near Pisa in 1145 after several pilgrimages; later he moved to the mountain valley of Malavalle, near Siena, where he lived a strictly ascetic life as a hermit with a single companion (later joined by a second). After his death on Feb 10, 1157, a hermitage grew up at his burial site;…

Geography

(827 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] I. History of the Discipline – II. Church History I. History of the Discipline Geography has come a long way from its beginnings in the mythical worldview (ANE creation accounts, early Greek philosophical speculation) and in the pragmatic exploration of the world (travel reports of merchants) to its development as an exact science. In antiquity, it was understood as a comprehensive lore of the earth and its inhabitants. The earliest accounts took the form of descriptions of coasts (Periplus et al.), which were soon joined by geographic and ethnographic excu…

Lay Abbot

(106 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] A lay abbot in the narrow sense, is a layman who is entrusted with the conduct and use of a monastery without being a member of its convent or even a monk. In the Frankish Empire of the 9th and 10th centuries and its successor states, members of the nobility were particularly frequently vested with this function. In a secondary meaning, lay abbot also designates the clerical holder of a commendam, who does not have the status of a monk (frequent from the High Middle Ages to the early modern period). Ulrich Köpf Bibliography F.J. Felten, Äbte und Laienäbte im Frankenreich, 1980.

Ficino, Marsilio

(391 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] (Oct 19, 1433, Figline Valdarno, Italy – Oct 1, 1499, Careggi, Italy). Ficino was the son of the personal physician of Cosimo de' Medici; the latter supported Ficino and prompted him to change his course of studies from medicine to philosophy. He acquired an extremely thorough knowledge of Greek and produced annotated translations of esp. Plato (1463–1469), Plotinus (1484–1486), and a series of other neo-Platonic authors. In Florence he founded a Platonic Academy (I, 5) in which h…

Liechtenstein

(293 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The principality of Liechtenstein is a microstate (160 km2) between the Swiss cantons of Sankt Gallen and Grisons (Graubünden) to the west and the Austrian state of Vorarlberg to the east. It is a hereditary constitutional monarchy with a population of 35,300 (2007), 80% Catholic, 7.4% Protestant (1996). Rulers of Liechtenstein are first mentioned in the 12th century, with two lines possessing lands in Styria and Moravia. When the Styrian line died out in 1619, the Moravian lord of Nikols…

Controversial Theology

(1,053 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] is a branch of theology that judges differences between various Christian Churches from a polemical and argumentative point of view rather than analyzing them from a historically critical perspective. The “controversy” involved relates both to the object and the method of this discipline. Theological positions are discussed when they become significant in disturbing or dividing the church community, and not so much as contributions to an open scholarly debate. I. Although the term controversial theology did not become common until the 20th century, …

Ireland

(2,091 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Richter, Michael
[German Version] I. General Facts – II. Christianity I. General Facts Lying west of Great Britain in the North Atlantic, Ireland belongs to the British Isles and covers an area of 84,421 km2. Its (esp. in the west) strongly cleft coastline has a total length of 3,173 km. Numerous small offshore islands and reefs played an important role in the history of Ireland as places of refuge, bridgeheads, and the like. The island's interior is relatively flat with a general altitude of approx. 60–120 m above sea level. Mountains, whic…

Physis/Natura

(1,828 words)

Author(s): Hornauer, Holger | Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] I. Religious Studies 1. The Greek Φύσις/ Phýsis is an abstract personification and an effective divine power. It is not restricted to any particular area of responsibility, and has no cult of its own or special iconography, with two exceptions: the votive relief of Archelaus of Priene (so-called “Apotheosis of Homer,” c. 120–130 bce), and the mosaic of Merida (2nd cent. ce; natura is between heaven, the sea, the Euphrates, the Nile, Tellus etc.). 2. In pre-Socratic natural philosophy (see also Nature), Physis may be personified and thought of as divine power (…

Seal/Stamp

(1,059 words)

Author(s): Uehlinger, Christoph | Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] I. Archaeology Seals are attested in the ancient Near East since the pre-pottery Neolithic (c. 7000 bce), initially in the form of simple round or oval disks or theriomorphic stamps. Beginning in the late 4th millennium (Susa, Uruk), we also find cylinder seals (Good Shepherd: I, fig.). The latter were in use until the end of the first millennium bce, but they are also found in Egypt and the eastern Mediterranean region. In cultures where papyrus or leather was the commonest writing material, smaller stamp seals were preferred. In Egypt c. 2300 bce, carved stamp seals ca…

Ebeling, Gerhard

(1,181 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Lange, Dietz
[German Version] I. Life – II. Church Historian – III. Systematic Theologian Jul 6, 1912, Berlin-Steglitz – Sep 30, 2001, Zollikerberg/Zürich), Protestant German theologian. I. Life Ebeling began his theological studies in 1930; after studying at Marburg, Berlin, and Zürich, he passed his first theological examination for the examination office of the Confessing Church in Berlin. He prepared for pastoral ministry under …

Town and City

(4,189 words)

Author(s): Dangschat, Jens S. | Köpf, Ulrich | Grünberg, Wolfgang
[German Version] I. Sociology The popular idea of a town or city is primarily a densely populated and heterogeneous collection of buildings having various uses, provided with specific rights, and always having a market place. The “European city” is however principally understood as being also the arena of city society. Sociology has studied the development of urban societies for about 150 years, because towns are places of close-knit economic growth, social diversity, and innovations and conflicts. To modern sociology the town was simply the laboratory of society. Today in Europe …

Blood of Christ

(1,937 words)

Author(s): Breytenbach, Cilliers | Köpf, Ulrich | Hunsinger, George
[German Version] I. New Testament – II. Church History – III. Dogmatics I. New Testament 1. General: The Greek word αἷμα ( haîma, “blood”) first of all denotes the blood of humans (Mark 5:25; John 19:34) as well as of animals (Heb 9:7, 18–25). Apart from flesh (σάρξ / sárx) blood constitutes a major component of the human body. Thus the expression “flesh and blood” designates the human (Matt 16:17; 1 Cor 15:50; Gal 1:16; Eph 6:12). The blood is the origin (John 1:13), the locus of life (Matt 27:4; Lev 17:11; Wis 7:2; Jub. 6:7; Philo Spec. IV 122f.), the psyche (“…

Hagiography

(2,226 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Plank, Peter | Dan, Joseph
[German Version] I. Western Hagiography – II. Eastern Hagiography – III. Medieval and Modern Judaism I. Western Hagiography Western hagiography, as a literature that has no scholarly purpose but serves to venerate saints, first followed Greek examples. Its most important genre, the lives of the saints, is shaped less by the panegyric biography of the martyr bishop Cyprian of Carthage, written by the deacon Pontius (2nd half of 3rd cent. ce), than by the vitaes of the desert father Anthony of Padua, written by Athanasius (with two Latin translations), and of Martin …

Discipleship, Christian

(4,235 words)

Author(s): Sim, David | Köpf, Ulrich | Ulrich, Hans G.
[German Version] I. New Testament – II. Church History – III. Ethics I. New Testament 1. Discipleship of Jesus in the Gospels An important aspect of the description of Jesus' activity in the Gospels is his call to discipleship. This call is issued unconditionally and requires an immediate decision. When the disciples hear Jesus' invitation to follow him, they obey at once and follow him (ἀκολουϑεῖν/ akoloutheín; Mark 1:16–20 parr.; 2:13–14 parr.; cf. Luke 5:1–11; John 1:35–51). Others, however,…

Universities

(5,637 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | vom Bruch, Rüdiger | Roxborogh, John
[German Version] I. History 1. Middle Ages and Reformation. The university, the most important academic institution devoted to teach-¶ ing (Education/Formation) and research today, is a creation of the medieval West. Its appearance marked a deep caesura in the history of Western science, especially in the history of theology (Theology, History/Historiography of). The multiplicity of institutions involved in acquiring and transmitting knowledge (monasteries, cathedral schools, monastery schools, schools run by inde…

Disputation

(1,448 words)

Author(s): Dan, Joseph | Köpf, Ulrich | van Ess, Josef
[German Version] I. Judaism – II. Christianity – III. Islam I. Judaism Talmudic tradition includes several examples of disputations between Jewish scholars and pagan philosophers or Roman emperors, dealing mainly with the questions of divine unity, the creation and the role of Israel ( b. Sanh. 91a–b; ' Abod. Zar. 10a–11a, etc.). Disputations with representatives of Islam and, especially, of the Christian religion became a central subject in the historical and apologetical literature (…

Teachers

(2,641 words)

Author(s): Rau, Eckhard | Köpf, Ulrich | Lämmermann, Godwin
[German Version] I. Earliest Christianity According to CIJ 2, 1266 and passim, religious teachers known as διδάσκαλος/ didáskalos or רב/ rab (addressed as: διδάσκαλε/ didáskale; רבי/ rabbi; rabbi) existed in Palestine prior to 70 ce (Zimmermann). All four Gospels portray Jesus as a teacher with a circle of disciples who were also responsible for the preservation of his teaching. Q (Logia/Sayings Source/Q), furthermore, emphasizes the teacher’s superiority over the disciple (Luke 6:40 par.). Mark has Jesus being addressed as a διδάσκαλε or ῥαββί/ rhabbí who, in a singular show …

Edifying Literature

(3,117 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Weismayer, Josef | Beutel, Albrecht
[German Version] I. To the Reformation – II. Modern Era – III. Present I. To the Reformation The term “edifying literature” (or “devotional literature”) embraces all Christian literature that is not liturgical, juristic, merely informative, or scholarly (history, theology) but is meant to edify and encourage piety and Christian conduct. But the boundaries distinguishing e…

Experience

(3,622 words)

Author(s): Willaschek, Marcus | Stock, Konrad | Köpf, Ulrich | Loder, James E.
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Philosophy of Religion – III. Church History – IV. Fundamental Theology – V. Dogmatics – VI. Ethics – VII. Practical Theology I. Philosophy In a broad sense shaped by daily life in the world, “experience” has been understood since Aristotle ( Metaph. 980b28–982a3) as a kind of knowledge of reality that rests on practical contact and is related to paradigmatic individual cases (Gk ἐμπειρία/ empeiría; Lat. experientia). It does not, therefore, lead to systematic knowledge but remains “knowledge of…

Monasticism

(13,595 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Freiberger, Oliver | Mürmel, Heinz | Horstmann, Monika
[German Version] I. Terminology – II. Religious Studies – III. Church History – IV. Buddhism – V. India I. Terminology Monasticism is a collective term for an alternative way of life, always religiously motivated, that includes asceticism but is also characterized by a more or less radical withdrawal from society (the “world”) as well as from the monastics' own community of faith. The term monk commonly used in Christianity (from secular Gk μοναχός/ monachós, “solitary,” Lat. monachus, borrowed by way of a hypothetical 8th-century monichus* into Old High German [ munih] and othe…
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