History of the christian church



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(3) On the degrees of relationship within which marriage is permissible. 1255

(4) Magic arts.6 Raban was singularly free from the superstitions of his time, for in the second part of this tract, written in 842, he takes strong ground against necromancy in all its forms, of which he gives an interesting catalogue, and while explaining the appearance of ghosts, evil spirits and similar supposed existences on the ground of demoniac influence, he yet admits the possibility that the senses may be deceived. Curiously enough, he cites in point the appearance of Samuel to Saul. He denies the reality of Samuel’s appearance and holds that Saul was deceived by the devil; for two reasons, (1) the real Samuel, the man of God, would not have permitted the worship which Saul paid to the supposed Samuel; (2) the real Samuel was in Abraham’s bosom; he would, therefore, not say to the impious king, "To-morrow thou shalt be with me." 1257

(4) A Response to certain Canonical Questions of the Suffragan Bishop Reginald.8

(5) Whether it is permissible for a suffragan bishop to ordain priests and deacons with the consent of his bishop.9 He replies in the affirmative.

IV. Writings upon Penance. (1) Two Penitentials. 1260 They give the decisions of councils respecting penance. (2) Canonical questions relating to penance. 1261 (3) The virtues and vices and the satisfaction for sin. 1262

V. Miscellaneous. (1) Homilies.3 There are two collections, the first seventy in number upon the principal feasts and on the virtues; the second, one hundred and sixty-three upon the Gospels and Epistles. The first collection must have been made earlier than 826, for it is dedicated to bishop Haistulf, who died in that year. The most of these homilies were doubtless actually delivered by Raban. The sermons of Leo the Great, Augustin, Alcuin and others have been liberally drawn on, and so the homilies are compilations in great measure, like the rest of his works. Yet a few are apparently original and have the greatest interest, inasmuch as they treat of the vices then current and so furnish a picture of the times. 1264

(2) Treatise on the Soul.5 It is an extract with slight additions from Cassiodorus’ De Anima, as he acknowledges in his preface to king Lothair. To it are appended extracts from the De disciplina Romanae militiae of Flavius Vegetius Renatus. The reason given for this strange appendix is "the frequent incursions of the Barbarians." The treatise was perhaps the last product of Rabanus. 1266

(3) A martyrology.7 The saints for the different days are noted, in most cases merely the name is given, in others there are short sketches. Its principal source is Jerome. It was prepared at the request of Ratleik, who stole the relics of SS. Marcellinus and Petrus for Einhard; and is prefaced by a short poem addressed to the abbot Grimold.

(4) The vision of God, purity of heart and mode of penance. 1268 Three books dedicated to the abbot Bonosus (Hatto). The first is mostly extracted from Augustin’s De vivendo Deo; the second and the third from other old sources.

(5) The Passion of our Lord, 1269a brief and pious meditation upon our Lord’s sufferings.

VI. Letters. (1) A letter to Bishop Humbert upon lawful degrees of relationship between married persons. 1270 (2) Seven miscellaneous letters. 1271 Epist. i. to suffragan bishop Regimbald on discipline. Epist. iii. to Eigil against Radbertus’s view of the Lord’s Supper. Epist. iv. v. vi. to Hincmar, Notingus and Count Eberhard upon predestination. Epist. vii. to Louis the German; the acts of the Mainz council of 848. Epist. viii. on Gottschalk, a synodical letter to Hincmar.

VII. Poems. Raban was no poetic genius; yet he had carefully studied prosody and he was able to write verses to his friends and for different occasions. 1272 He also wrote some epitaphs, including his own. His most extraordinary production is a long poem, "The praise of the Cross." This was begun at the suggestion of Alcuin in Tours, but not completed until 815. It is a monument of misdirected skill and patience. He presents twenty-eight drawings by his friend Hatto. Some are geometrical, others are of persons or objects. The page on which is the drawing is filled in by a stanza of the poem, the letters of which are regularly spaced and some are purposely arranged in prominent and peculiar positions so that they catch the eye and form other words. Each stanza is followed by an explanatory section in prose, and the second book is a prose treatise upon the subject. The whole is prefaced by three poems; the first pleads for the intercession of Alcuin, the second is the dedication to the Pope, and the third, "The figure Of Caesar" is the dedication to Louis the Pious. Alcuin had written a poem, "On the Holy Cross," upon a somewhat similar plan. So that the suggestion may have come from him, but the idea may be traced to Fortunatus. This poem of Raban Maur was very popular in the Middle Age and was considered a marvel of ingenuity.

The hymns of Raban are few in number, for although many have been attributed to him his right to most of them is very doubtful.
§ 168. Haymo.
I. Haymo, Halberstatensis episcopus: Opera, in Migne, Tom. CXVI.-CXVIII.

II. Paul Anton: De vita et doctrina Haymonis, Halle, 1700, 2d ed. 1705; C. G. Derling: Comm. Hist. de Haymone, Helmstädt, 1747. Ceillier XII. 434–439. Hist. Lit. de la France, V. 111–126. Bähr, 408–413.


Haymo (Haimo, Aymo, Aimo) was a Saxon, and was probably born about 778. He took monastic vows at Fulda, was sent by, his abbot (Ratgar) with his intimate friend Rabanus Maurus in 803 to Tours to study under Alcuin; on his return he taught at Fulda until in 839 he was chosen abbot of Hirschfeld. In 841 he was consecrated bishop of Halberstadt. In 848 he sat in the Council of Mayence which condemned Gottschalk. He founded at considerable expense the cathedral library of Halberstadt, which unfortunately was burnt in 1179. He died March 27, 853. He was an excellent scholar. As an exegete he was simple and clear, but rather too verbal.

His writings are voluminous, and were first published by the Roman Catholics in the Reformation period (1519–36). They teach a freer and less prejudiced Catholic theology than the Tridentine. Thus he denies that Peter founded the Roman church, that the pope has universal supremacy, and rejects the Paschasian doctrine of transubstantiation. His works consist principally of (1) Commentaries. 1273 He wrote or compiled upon the Psalms, certain songs in the Old Testament, Isaiah, the Minor Prophets, Canticles, Pauline Epistles and the Apocalypse.

Besides these commentaries, (2) Homilies, 1274upon the festivals of the church year and (3) Miscellanies, "The Body and Blood of the Lord," 1275which is an extract from his commentary on 1st Cor., "Epitome of sacred history," 1276substantially though not entirely an extract from Rufinus’ Latin translation of Eusebius’ "Ecclesiastical history," and an ascetic piece in three books, "The love for the heavenly country." 1277
§ 169. Walahfrid Strabo.
I. Walafridus Strabus, Fuldensis monachus: Opera, in Migne, Tom. CXIII.-CXIV. His Carmina have been edited in a very thorough manner by Ernst Dümmler: Poetae Latini aevi Carolini. Tom. II. (Berlin, 1884), pp. 259–473.

II. For his life see the Preface of Dümmler and Ebert, II. 145–166. Cf. also for his works besides Ebert, Ceillier, XII. 410–417; Hist. Lit. de la France, V. 59–76; Bähr, pp. 100–105, 398–401.


Walahfrid, poet and commentator, theologian and teacher, was born of obscure parentage in Alemannia about 809, and educated in the Benedictine abbey school of Reichenau on the island in Lake Constance. His cognomen Strabus or, generally, Strabo was given to him because he squinted, but was by himself assumed as his name.8 From 826 to 829 he studied at Fulda under Rabanus Maurus. There he formed a friendship with Gottschalk, and there he appears to have lived all alone in a cell, the better perhaps to study. 1279 On leaving Fulda he went to Aix la Chapelle, and was befriended by Hilduin, the lord chancellor, who introduced him to the emperor Louis the Pious. The latter was much pleased with him and appreciating his scholarship made him tutor to his son Charles. The empress Judith was also particularly friendly to him. In 838 Louis the Pious appointed him abbot of Reichenau, but two years later Louis the German drove him from his post and he went to Spires, where he lived until 842, when the same Louis restored him to his abbotship, probably at the solicitation of Grimald, his chancellor. 1280 In 849 he went over to France on a diplomatic mission from Louis the German to Charles the Bald, but died on August 18th of that year while crossing the Loire, and was buried at Reichenau. 1281

Walahfrid was a very amiable, genial and witty man, possessed remarkable attainments in both ecclesiastical and classical literature, and was moreover a poet with a dash of genius, and in this latter respect is a contrast to the merely mechanical versifiers of the period. He began writing poetry while a mere boy, and in the course of his comparatively brief life produced many poems, several of them of considerable length.

His Writings embrace

1. Expository Works. 1. Glosses,2i.e., brief notes upon the entire Latin Bible, including the Apocrypha; a very meritorious compilation, made especially from Augustin, Gregory the Great, Isidore of Seville, and Bede, with very many original remarks. This work was for five hundred years honored by the widest use in the West. Peter Lombard quotes it as "the authority" without further designation; and by many its notes have been given equal weight with the Bible text they accompany. It was one of the earliest printed works, notwithstanding its extent. 1283 2. Exposition of the first twenty Psalms, 1284rather allegorical than really explanatory. 3. Epitome of Rabanus Maurus’ Commentary on Leviticus. 1285 This work is an indication of Walahfrid’s reverence for his great teacher. 4. Exposition of the Four Evangelists. 1286 It was formerly printed among the works of Jerome. The notes are brief and designed to bring out the "inner sense." 5. The beginnings and growth of the divine offices. 1287 This valuable and original work upon the archeology of the liturgy was written about 840 at the request of Reginbert, the learned librarian of the abbey of Reichenau, who desired more accurate information upon the origin of the different parts of the liturgy. The supplementary character of the work explains its lack of system. Walahfrid treats in disconnected chapters of temples and altars; bells; the derivation of several words for holy places; the use of "pictures," as ornaments and aids to devotion, but not as objects of worship; the things fitting divine worship; "the sacrifices of the New Testament" (in this chap., No. XVI., he dissents from the transubstantiation theory of Radbertus, saying, Christ "after the Paschal supper gave to his disciples the sacrament of his body and blood in the substance of the bread and wine and taught them to celebrate [the sacrament] in memory of his passion" 1288); then follow a number of chapters upon the Eucharist; sacred vestments; canonical hours and hymns; baptisms; titles, &c. The work closes with a comparison of ecclesiastical and secular dignities.

II. A Homily on the Fall of Jerusalem.9 Walahfrid gives Josephus’ account of the fall of the city and then proceeds to the spiritual application of our Lord’s prophetic discourse (Matt. xxiv.).

III. Biographies. 1. Life of the Abbot St. Gall, 1290the apostle of Switzerland (d. 645 or 646). It is not original, but a rewriting of the life by Wettin, Walahfrid’s honored teacher at Reichenau. Walahfrid reproduced the same in verse. 1291 2. Life of St. Othmar, abbot of St. Gall, 1292similarly reproduced. 3. The prologue to his edition of Einhard’s Life of Charlemagne, which gives valuable information about Einhard. 1293

IV. Poetry. 1. The Vision of Wettin.4 This is the oldest of his poems, dating according to his own assertion from his eighteenth year 1295(i.e., c. 826). It is not original, but a versification, with additions, of the prose work of Heito. The ultimate source is Wettin himself, who relates what he saw (October 824) on his journey, under angelic guidance, to Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise. The fact that Wettin was very sick at the time explains the occasion of the vision and his reading its contents, but the poem is interesting not only in itself, but as a precursor of Dante’s Divine Comedy. 1296 2. The Life and Death of St. Mammes, 1297an ascetic from childhood, who preached to the wild sheep gathered by a strange impulse in a little chapel. This extraordinary performance attracted adverse notice from the authorities. Mammes was accused of witchcraft and, on refusing to sacrifice to the gods, also of atheism. His enemies vainly attempted to kill him by fire, by wild beasts, and by stoning. Finally he was peacefully called from life by the voice of God. 3. The Life and Death of St. Blaithmaic, abbot of Hy and martyr. 1298 It relates how an Irish crown prince embraced an ascetic life in childhood and attained a martyr’s crown on the island of Hy. 4. Garden-culture, 1299a curious poem upon the plants in the convent garden. 5. On the Image of Tetricus 1300(Dietrich), an ingenious poem in laudation of Louis the Pious and his family. 1301 6. Miscellaneous Poems, 1302including epistles, epigrams, inscriptions and hymns.
§ 170. Florus Magister, of Lyons.
I. Florus, diaconus Lugdunensis: Opera omnia, in Migne, Tom. CXIX. ol. 9–424. His poems are given by Dümmler: Poet. Lat. aev. Carolini, II. (Berlin, 1884), pp. 507–566.

II. Bach: Dogmengeschichte des Mittelalters, Wien, 1873–1875, 2 Abth. I. 240. Hist. Lit. de la France, V. 213–240. Ceillier, XII. 478–493. Bähr, 108, 109; 447–453. Ebert, II. 268–272.


Florus was probably born in the closing year of the eighth century and lived in Lyons during the reigns of Louis the Pious, Charles the Bald and Louis II. He was head of the cathedral school, on which account he is commonly called Florus Magister. He was also a deacon or sub-deacon. He enjoyed a wide reputation for learning, virtue and ability. He stood in confidential relations with his bishop, Agobard, and with some of the most distinguished men of his time. His library was a subject of remark and wonder for its large size. 1303

Like every other scholar under Charles the Bald, he made his contribution to the Eucharistic and Predestination controversies. In the former he took the side of Rabanus Maurus and Ratramnus against the transubstantiation theory of Paschasius Radbertus; in the latter he opposed Johannes Scotus Erigena, without, however, going entirely over to the side of Gottschalk. He sat in the council of Quiercy (849), the first one called by Hincmar in the case of Gottschalk. He died about 860.

His complete works are:

1. A patristic cento on the election of Bishops,4written in 834, to show that in primitive Christian times the bishops were always chosen by the free vote of the congregation and the clergy. Therefore the interference of the king in such elections, which was one of the growing evils of the time, was unwarranted by tradition and only defensible on the plea of necessity to preserve the union between Church and State.

2. An Exposition of the Mass, 1305compiled, according to his own express statement, for the most part, from Cyprian, Ambrose, Augustin, and other Fathers.

3. A Treatise against Amalarius, 1306in which he supports Agobard against Amalarius, who had explained the liturgy in a mystical and allegorical manner. 1307

4. A Martyrology,8a continuation of Bede’s.

5. Sermon on Predestination. 1309

6. A treatise against Scotus Erigena’s errors,0written in 852 in the name of the church of Lyons. He calls attention to Erigena’s rationalistic treatment of the Scriptures and the Fathers; rejects the definition of evil as negation; insists that faith in Christ and an inner revelation are necessary to a right understanding of the Scriptures. It is noticeable that while he censures Erigena for his abuse of secular science, he claims that it has its proper use. 1311

7. St. Augustin’s Exposition of the Pauline Epistles,2long attributed to Bede.

8. Capitulary collected from the Law and the Canons. 1313

9. Miscellaneous Poems,4which prove him to have had a spark of true poetic genius. 1315

10. There is also extant a letter which he wrote to the empress Judith.6
§ 171. Servatus Lupus.
I. Beatus Servatus Lupus: Opera, in Migne, Tom. CXIX. col. 423–694 (a reprint of the edition of Baluze. Paris, 1664, 2d ed. 1710). The Homilies and hymns given by Migne (col. 693–700) are spurious.

II. Notitia historica et bibliographica in Servatum Lupum by Baluze, in Migne, l.c. col. 423–6. Nicolas: Étude sur les lettres de Servai Loup, Clermont Ferrant, 1861; Franz Sprotte: Biographie des Abtes Servatus Lupus von Ferrières, Regensburg, 1880. Du Pin, VII. 169–73. Ceillier, XII. 500–514. Hist. Lit. de la France, V. 255–272. Bähr, 456–461. Ebert, II. 203–209. J. Bass Mullinger: The Schools of Charles the Great. London, 1877, pp. 158–170. For Lupus’ part in the different councils he attended, see Hefele: Conciliengeschichte, IV. passim.


Lupus, surnamed Servatus,7was descended from a prominent family. He was born in Sens (70 miles S. E. of Paris) in the year 805 and educated in the neighboring Benedictine monastery of SS. Mary and Peter anciently called Bethlehem, at Ferrières, then under abbot Aldrich, who in 829 became archbishop of Sens, and died early in 836. He took monastic vows, was ordained a deacon and then taught in the convent-school until in 830 on advice of Aldrich he went to Fulda. Einhard, whose life of Charlemagne had already deeply impressed him, 1318was then abbot of Seligenstadt, only a few miles away, but his son Wussin was being educated at Fulda, and it was on a visit that he made to see his son that Lupus first met him. With him and with the abbot of Fulda, the famous Rabanus Maurus, he entered into friendship. It was he who incited Rabanus to make his great compilation upon the Epistles of Paul; 1319and to him Einhard dedicated his now lost treatise De adoranda cruce. 1320 He pursued his studies at Fulda and also gave instruction until the spring of 836, when he returned to Ferrières. 1321 He then took priest’s orders and taught grammar and rhetoric in the abbey school. In 837 he was presented at the court of Louis the Pious, and by special request of the empress Judith appeared the next year (Sept. 22, 838). 1322 The favor showed him led him naturally to expect speedy preferment, but he was doomed to disappointment. In the winter of 838 and 839 he accompanied Odo, who had succeeded Aldrich, to Frankfort, 1323where the emperor Louis spent January and February, 839. Louis died in 840 and was succeeded by Charles the Bald. In 842 Charles deposed Odo because of his connection with Lothair, and by request of the emperor the monks elected Lupus their abbot, Nov. 22, 842, 1324and the emperor confirmed the election. It was with difficulty that Odo was removed. The year 844 was an eventful one with Lupus. The monks of Ferrières were bound yearly to supply money and military service to Charles, and Lupus had to take the field in person. 1325 In this year he went against the rebellious Aquitanians. On June 14th he was taken prisoner by them in the battle of Angoulême, but released after a few days by intervention of Turpio, count of Angoulême, and on July 3d he was back again in Ferrières. Later on he was sent by Charles, with Prudentius, bishop of Troyes, to visit the monasteries of Burgundy, and at the close of the year he sat in the council of Verneuil, and drew up the canons. 1326 Can. XII. is directed against the king’s seizure on ecclesiastical property. His own special grievance was that Charles had rewarded the fidelity of a certain Count Odulf by allowing him the revenues of the cell or monastery of St. Judocus on the coast of Picardy (St. Josse sur mer), which had belonged to Alcuin, but was given to Ferrières by Louis the Pious, and the loss of which greatly crippled his already expensive monastery. 1327 It was not, however, until 849 that the cell was restored. This is the more strange because Charles had a high regard for his learning and diplomatic skill, as is shown by his employment of Lupus in delicate public business. Thus in 847 Lupus sat in the peace congress at Utrecht between Lothair, Louis and Charles the Bald. In midsummer 849 Charles sent him to Leo IV. at Rome concerning the ecclesiastical encroachments of the Breton Duke Nominoi. In the spring of 853 he sat in the council of Soissons and took Hincmar’s side regarding the deposition of those priests whom Ebo had ordained, after his own deposition in 835. In the same year he attended the convocation of the diocese of Sens and there sided with Prudentius against Hincmar’s deliverances in the Gottschalk controversy. It is supposed that he was also at the council of Quiercy, 857, because his Admonitio 1328is written in the spirit of the deliberations of that council respecting the troubles of the times. In 858 he was sent on diplomatic business to Louis the German. But in the same year he was forced by the exigencies of the times to deposit the abbey’s valuables with the monks of St. Germain Auxerrois for safe keeping. In 861 Foleric of Troyes offered protection to his monastery. In 862 he was at Pistes, and drew up the sentence of the Council against Robert, archbishop of Mans. As after this date all trace of Lupus is lost, his death during that year is probable,

Servatus Lupus was one of the great scholars of the ninth century. But he gained knowledge under great difficulties, for the stress of circumstances drove him out of the seclusion he loved, and forced him to appear as a soldier, although he knew not how to fight, to write begging letters instead of pursuing his studies, and even to suffer imprisonment. Yet the love of learning which manifested itself in his childhood and increased with his years, notwithstanding the poor educational arrangements at Ferrières, 1329became at length a master passion and dominated his thoughts. 1330 It mattered not how pressing was the business in hand, he would not let business drive study out of his mind. He set before him the costly and laborious project of collecting a library of the Latin classics, and applied to all who could assist him, even to the pope (Benedict III.). He was thankful for the loan of codices, so that by comparison he might make a good text. He was constantly at work upon the classics and gives abundant evidence of the culture which such study produces, in his "uncommon skill in the lucid exposition of a subject." 1331

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