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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, …

Peter Cantor

(242 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] (Petrus; first half of the 12th cent., Hosdenc, near Beauvais – 1197, Cistercian abbey of Longpont, near Soissons). Sometime before 1173, after studying at the cathedral school in Reims, he began teaching at the cathedral school in Paris as a canon; in 1183 he was appointed to the post of cantor. He refused his election as bishop of Paris in 1196. In 1197 he was elected dean of the cathedral chapter of Reims, but died on his journey from Paris. Numerous works, some still unpublished, bear witness to his teaching activity: glosses on the Old and New Testaments; Distinctiones or S…

Cathedral Schools

(471 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] were educational originally institutions for training clergy, administered by the episcopal curia. In the Early Church, learned bishops (preeminently Augustine) already gave instruction to their clergy. From the second Council of Toledo (527/531) onward, the Church repeatedly urged the establishment of episcopal schools; in 789, they were ¶ enjoined by Charlemagne, and in 1076 by Gregory VII. Nevertheless, down to the Reformation numerous councils deplored the educational level of the clergy – a sign of the great dispari…

Reform, Idea of

(2,727 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] In classical Latin, the verb reformare and the associated noun reformatio already denoted a transformation for the better: restoration of an earlier human condition, since lost (morality e.g. Pliny the Younger Panegyricus 53.1: “corruptos depravatosque mores . . . reformare et corrigere”; bodily health e.g. Theodorus Priscianus Euproiston 1.38: “oculorum aciem reformare”), or physical objects (e.g. Solinus, Collectanea rerum memorabilium 40.5: “templum reformare”) or improvement without regard to the past (e.g. Sen. Ep. 58.26: “reformatio morum”; Ep. 94.5…

Jesus Christ

(19,624 words)

Author(s): Roloff, Jürgen | Pokorný, Petr | Köpf, Ulrich | Lathrop, Gordon W. | Krötke, Wolf | Et al.
[German Version] I. Name and Titles – II. Jesus Christ in the History of Christianity – III. Jesus Christ in Other Religions – IV. Jesus Christ in Jewish Perspective – V. Jesus Christ in Islamic Perspective – VI. Jesus Christ in Art I. Name and Titles 1. Jesus of Nazareth a. Terminology The appellation Jesus Christ signals a significant tension regarding the figure in question. Although generally understood as a double name, it originated as a fusion of two heterogeneous elements: the theophoric personal name Joshua/Jeshua (Heb. “the Lord help…

Recluses/Hermits

(442 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] Recluses or hermits are men and women who do penance by shutting themselves (or having themselves shut) into a cell, either for a specific period (usually at the beginning of their lives as ascetics) or for the rest of their lives. This extreme form of asceticism surfaced in the Early Church in all regions of the East where there were monastic settlements (e.g. in Egypt, John of Lycopolis; esp. common in Syria) and came to the West in the 6th century, but it reached its climax in …

Vikings

(188 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The Vikings were marauding seafarers from Scandinavia, who plagued large sections of Europe from ¶ the 8th century to the 11th century. Swedes descended on Novgorod and Kiev via the Gulf of Finland, advancing as far as the Black Sea (Varangians). Norwegians conquered Scotland and the northern and eastern parts of Ireland, settled Iceland, and sailed as far as Greenland, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia. Danes settled between the mouths of the Oder and Vistula and landed on the southern and eastern …

Remigius of Auxerre (Saint)

(119 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] (after 841 – May 2, probably 908, Paris), a monk from the monastery of St. Germain in Auxerre, where he succeeded his teacher Heiric ( Heiricus). Remigius was involved in the renewal of the school of Reims around 893 and taught in Paris from 900 onward. He authored more than 20 works that were widely read in the Middle Ages, although most of them have never been printed: commentaries on ancient and early medieval grammarians and poets, on Genesis and the Psalms, and on Boethius’s De consolatione philosophiae and Opuscula sacra; he also wrote an exposition of the mass. Ulrich Kö…

Libri sententiarum

(992 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] Authoritative dicta with significant content (Gk γνώμη/ gnṓmē [earliest: Sophoc. Ajax 1091] alongside more specialized terms; Lat. sententia [since Cicero]) were already in use in pre-Christian times in literary and rhetorical contexts; later they were collected for more convenient use ( gnomology, similar to anthology [Florilegium]). Examples are Μενάνδρου γνώμαι μονόστιχοι/ Menándrou gnṓmai monóstichoi ¶ (probably begun in the 2nd cent. bce; continued into the Byzantine period) and Σέξτου γνώμαι/ Séxtou gnṓmai (c. 200 ce). During the Trinitarian contr…

Literature, History of

(11,666 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich | Utzschneider, Helmut | Reiser, Marius | Hezser, Catherine | Heinzmann, Michael
[German Version] I. The Concept and its Problems – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament – IV. Judaism – V. Church History I. The Concept and its Problems Since the emergence of historical consciousness in the late 18th and early 19th century, literary historiography has attempted to present literary phenomena not simply as a sequential chronological or lexical (alphabetical) list but in their internal, substantial coherence and its historical development. The notion of literary history goes back to antiquity, but to …

Quaestio

(422 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] A true (as opposed to “rhetorical”) question (Gk ζήτημα/ zḗtēma, πρόβλημα/ próblēma, ἀπορία/ aporía, Lat. quaestio), seeking an answer that will solve a problem, is a fundamental tool for rational argumentation. It was used already by the ancient Greeks (beginning with the questions of Socrates in the dialogues of Plato) and rabbinic Judaism (in give and take between teacher and student). Formulation of questions became common early on in the theology of the Early Church (reaching a high point in Augustine, e.g. De diversis quaestionibus ad Simplicianum; Quaestione…

Oxford University

(900 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The city is first mentioned in 912. It was founded in the Anglo-Saxon period and walled by the Normans, and lies at the intersection of important routes. As early as the 12th century there were schools for the artes liberales , law and theology, from which the university developed by the beginning of the 13th century. Following a conflict with the townspeople, most masters and students left Oxford in 1209; some of them founded Cambridge University. When others returned to Oxford in 1214 the university…

Carmelites

(510 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] The Carmelite Order goes back to a community of occidental hermits on Mount Carmel, who were granted a rule by the patriarch of Jerusalem in 1210. It obligated them to a strict contemplative life. The spirituality of the community, led by a prior, was marked by anachoretic traditions, the example of the prophet Elijah, and veneration of the Virgin Mary. In 1240, the Carmelites fled before the growing threat of the Saracens into their European homelands, where …

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…

Pico della Mirandola

(799 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] 1. Giovanni (Feb 24, 1463, Mirandola near Modena – Nov 17, 1494, Florence), son of the count of Mirandola. From 1477, he studied canon law, artes liberales, philosophy, and literature, especially in Bologna, Ferrara, Padua, Paris, and Perugia. In addition to Greek, he learned Hebrew and Arabic. He paid several visits to Florence, where he made friends with Lorenzo de’ Medici and his circle, especially with M. Ficino, Angelo Poliziano (1454–1494), and Girolamo Benivieni (1453–1542). …

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 (…

Summa theologiae

(401 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] In the 12th century, a scholarly work briefly summarizing the totality of important knowledge in a particular field (Robert of Melun: singulorum brevis comprehensio) came to be called a Summa (later also Summula). Various disciplines were represented: Summa grammaticae/grammaticalis; Summa super Priscianum; Summa dictaminis/artis notariae; Summa logicae ( Summulae dialectices/logicales/logicae); Summa de modis significandi; Summa philosophiae; Summula philosophiae naturalis; Summa de anima, etc. Compendia of civil and canon law were also called Summae…

Angela of Foligno

(166 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] (1248/1249, Foligno – Jan 4, 1309, Foligno). Influenced by the Franciscans at an early age, as a wife and mother Angela experienced a conversion to a life of asceticism and charity during a pilgrimage to Assisi in 1285. In 1291, after her immediate family had died, she joined the Franciscan Third Order. She lived with a female companion; a Franciscan who was related to her served as her confessor. At times a loose circle of disciples (including Ubertino of Casale) gathered about the magistra theologorum. Her confessor translated her ve…

Peter Comestor

(237 words)

Author(s): Köpf, Ulrich
[German Version] (Petrus; Manducator; early 12th cent., Troyes – 1178/1179, Paris). After studies in Troyes (where he became dean of the cathedral in 1147 and a canon of the abbey of St. Loup), Tours, and Paris, in 1159 he succeeded his teacher Peter Lombard at the cathedral school in Paris. In 1168 he became chancellor of Notre-Dame. During his last years, he lived in the Augustinian abbey of St. Victor. From his time as a teacher, many works have survived, mostly never published in print: glosses (Glossa ordinaria) on the Gospels, a commentary on the Psalms and (the first) on the Sentences of…
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