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Religion and power in the Frankish Kingdoms: studies in honour of Mayke de Jong

This book, written in honour of Mayke De Jong, offers twenty-five essays focused upon the importance of religion to Frankish politics. It deals with religious discourse and political polemic in studies that take up the themes of identity, and the creative deployment of the language of the Old Testament within Frankish society. The book explores how the use of ethnic rhetoric in a Christian context shaped medieval perceptions of community. It shows that the Carolingian way of dealing with the Adoptionist challenge was to allow a conversation between the Spanish bishops and their Frankish opponents to take place. Charlemagne's role in the Vita Alcuini as a guardian of orthodoxy who sought to settle a controversy by organising and supervising a theological debate was striking. The book also discusses the admonition of an abbot of Frankish origin who came from southern France and made his monastic career in southern Italy. It showcases three letter manuscripts that share certain features but are different in other aspects. The first manuscript is a collection of the Moral Letters from Seneca to his pupil Lucilius , Paris , BnF, lat. 8658A. The book demonstrates that the lists of amici, viventes et defuncti reflected how the royal monastery was interacting with ruling elites, at different levels, and how such interactions were an essential part of its identity. It also examines the context of Monte Cassino's fading into the background, in the conviction that both political and religious concerns were at play.

The case of Trising in context

In a letter written to Pope Hadrian II in the autumn of 871, Hincmar defended the canonical procedure he had followed in the case of a delinquent priest called Trising. The latter had been accused of violence and sexual transgression, and failed to appear as summoned by Hincmar at various synods. Instead, he went to Rome and came back after two years with a papal letter that ordered Hincmar to explain himself. Meanwhile, the archbishop of Rheims had already ordained a new priest in Trising’s place. Although all we have is Hincmar’s side of the matter, social historians have been fascinated by this case, for the light it sheds on the relation between rural parishes and their archbishop in the diocese of Rheims. This chapter approaches the text from a different perspective. Trising’s immediate and successful appeal to Rome may well indicate that the ideas contained in Pseudo-Isidore’ forgeries not only bolstered the position of bishops, but also the self-confidence of enterprising local priests. This included an increasing orientation towards papal Rome as a source of truly canonical and therefore superior justice.

in Hincmar of Rheims
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religion in early medieval society in general and M. de Jong, ‘Rethinking early medieval Christianity: a view from the Netherlands’, in The Bible and Politics in the Early Middle Ages, ed. M. de Jong, EME 7, special issue (1998), 261–76, p. 261. 2 R. McKitterick, Charlemagne. The Formation of a European Identity (Cambridge, 2008), p. 306. 3 J. Bennet and W.  Hollister, Medieval History. A  Short History (Boston, MA etc., 2006), p. 111. 1 2 Rosamond McKitterick particularly for the world of the Franks is of course Mayke de Jong. The title of her study of the reign

in Religious Franks
The making and unmaking of an early medieval relic

, legitimised his coup in 751? I shall demonstrate that the sandals of Christ turn out to be associated with one of the Carolingian dynasty’s first steps towards building the divinely established ecclesia whose nature Mayke de Jong has done so much to elucidate, and I shall follow her example in bringing scriptural exegesis to bear on questions of Carolingian political culture.2 Doing so will reveal the unstable interrelation See www.basilika-pruem.de/rundgang/basilika_rundgang.php (click on Punkt 7, in the north-east corner of the choir) (accessed 7 June 2014). 2 M

in Religious Franks

20 The Penance of Attigny (822) and the leadership of the bishops in amending Carolingian society Philippe Depreux Penance is a main topic in Louis the Pious’s reign, as Mayke de Jong’s book on the crisis of the late 820s and early 830s brilliantly shows.1 The most dramatic moment is the emperor’s deposition in 833, which led to vivid discussion among the political elite.2 This was not the first time Louis publicly acknowledged his errors, since he had already done so in 822 at Attigny, one of the most important palaces, which was associated with political

in Religious Franks

. 244–8. 280 Sven Meeder abbey of Monte Cassino in the same undergraduate handbooks, and its role in the Benedictine mission appears to have been played out at least for the Carolingian period. The current essay examines the context of Monte Cassino’s fading into the background, in the conviction that both political and religious concerns were at play. What Mayke de Jong has emphasised in her publications and teaching is that a too sharply defined distinction of political and religious concerns and ambitions misses the mark for our period. Spiritual concerns had

in Religious Franks

Church council under control of the Carolingians declared that monks and handmaids of God should strive to order their specific way of life iuxta regulam sancti Benedicti.2 The Regula Benedicti had been produced for ascetic enthusiasts finding their place in a world of fading Romanitas. It had little to do with Francia at the verge of the Carolingian takeover or with the ambitious plans of Charlemagne and Louis the Pious to shape an ideal God-pleasing society. Mayke de Jong has provided by far the best attempt to capture the spirit of monastic reform in the

in Religious Franks

11 An admonition too far? The sermon De cupiditate by Ambrose Autpertus Maximilian Diesenberger In her groundbreaking book The Penitential State, Mayke de Jong points out the significance of admonition in Carolingian society: ‘From Charlemagne’s reign onwards … moral warning, or admonitio, as it was usually called, pervaded public discourse.’1 Prior to Charlemagne, moral admonition was practised almost exclusively by bishops and abbots. This chapter focuses on the admonition of an abbot of Frankish origin who came from southern France and made his monastic

in Religious Franks
1 Peter 2.9 and the Franks

attitude of ‘religious Franks’ towards Frankish ethnic identity? And how exactly were ecclesia, regnum/imperium and gens related? We owe fundamental insights on this problem to Mayke de Jong: ‘From the late eighth century onwards, the notion of ecclesia, including all its connotations of the eventual salvation of God’s people, was harnessed to the identity of the Carolingian polity, with the ruler’s responsibility for the salvation of its people as its defining factor.’ Therefore, ‘the Holy Church or the Christian people [sancta ecclesia vel populus Christianus] could be

in Religious Franks
Inalienability of church property and the sovereignty of a ruler in the ninth century

21 From Justinian to Louis the Pious: inalienability of church property and the sovereignty of a ruler in the ninth century Stefan Esders and Steffen Patzold Mayke de Jong has vastly transformed our picture of the Carolingian period in the course of surveying the relationship between politics and religion anew. She has shown how misleading the dichotomy between ‘Church’ and ‘State’ is, which has structured numerous historical works on ninth-century Francia since at least the nineteenth century. The ecclesia was, in the discourse of the time, far more than just

in Religious Franks