Recent Acquisition: Defending Pope Joan

by Alan Krieger, Theology and Philosophy Librarian

The story about a female pope—Pope Joan—circulated widely from the early thirteenth century and was generally accepted. Allegedly, a woman disguised herself as a male in order to attend university with her lover. She quickly ascended through the ecclesiastical hierarchy and was elected pope under the name John. She reigned for two and a half years before her true identity was revealed when she fell to the ground and gave birth.

Hesburgh Libraries has just acquired an interesting and very rare example of a French Protestant writer refuting another Protestant author’s denial of the Pope Joan legend.

Pierre Congnard’s Traite contre l’eclaircissement donne par M. Blondel en la question, si une femme a este assise au siege papal de Rome, entre Leon IV et Benoist III (Saumur: Ian Ribotteau & Antoine Rousselet, 1655) is a Protestant response to a work by the Calvinist pastor, David Blondel (1591-1655). Blondel, similar to many Catholic writers, attempted to dispel the Pope Joan story on the basis of his own scholarly research. Congnard, however, supports the claim that there was indeed a female Pope.

There is apparently only one other copy of this title held by a North American institution.

 


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“‘Preserving the Steadfastness of Your Faith’: Catholics in the Early American Republic” digital exhibit

This digital exhibit expands on the current exhibit on display in Special Collections. It displays examples of American Catholicism expressed through (mostly) printed texts from 1783 through the early 1840s. They include the earliest Catholic bibles published by Mathew Carey, and editions of Thomas à Kempis’ The Imitation of Christ used and produced in the United States; polemical pamphlets with sexual and political subtexts that flew back and forth across the Atlantic; no-holds-barred dueling sectarian newspapers; books and pamphlets created in reaction to mob violence against the Ursuline convent school near Boston; and official reports that mapped the Church’s growth and growing pains.

Questions and comments may be directed to Rachel Bohlmann and Jean McManus. The physical exhibition continues to be open to the public through August 11, 2017.


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Recent Acquisition: Celebrating the Achievements of Pope Gregory XIII

by Alan Krieger, Theology and Philosophy Librarian

We’ve just acquired an emblem book that may be of interest to Catholic Reformation researchers, Principio Fabricii’s Delle allusioni, imprese, et emblemi del. sig. Principio Fabricii da Teramo sopra la vita,opere, et attioni di Gregorio XIII pontefice massimo libri VI (Rome, 1588). This first edition contains 231 numbered emblems, drawn from the Bible, classical mythology, and other emblem collections, as well as events and buildings from Pope Gregory XIII’s papacy.

Gregory XIII (birth name: Ugo Boncompagni) reigned from 1572-1585 and, in addition to his famous calendar revision, energetically continued the implementation of reforms articulated at the Council of Trent (1545-1563). These reforms included the insistence that bishops reside within their sees and the foundation of many new schools for the training of the clergy.

 


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Recent Acquisition: Mini Book about John Carroll

Francis J. Weber provides a glimpse into the life of John Carroll, the first Jesuit bishop and archbishop of the United States and father of Georgetown University, In John Carroll and the Vernacular Liturgy, also summarizes Carroll’s views about vernacular liturgy.

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Weber’s book is a limited edition miniature book. Special Collections copy is number 20 in an edition of 135. The book is 5.6 x 5.5 cm and is bound in paper boards covered with gold foil and a black leather spine. Affixed to the frontispiece is a postage stamp issued in 1989 by the Vatican to commemorate the bicentennial of the establishment of the Catholic hierarchy of the United States. The text is printed on Neenah Classic paper using a Chandler and Price Pilot Press.

Recent Acquisition: Pre-Reformation pamphlet attacking concubinage

by Alan Krieger, Theology and Philosophy Librarian

boo_004465051-01rHesburgh Libraries has just purchased a rare pre-Reformation pamphlet, Avisamentum de concubinariis non absolvendis (Strasbourg, 1507), that features a scathing attack on the practice of concubinage (consorting with prostitutes) among the clergy. Usually attributed to Jakob Wimpfeling, a humanist in the circle of Erasmus, this is an interesting example of the role print played in the disseminating works that detailed clerical abuses in the years leading up to the Reformation.

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Hesburgh’s copy is rubricated throughout and contains marginal annotations in two different contemporary hands. There are only four other known North American holdings of this edition.

 


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Recent Acquisition: De laude monasticae religionis opusculum

by Alan Krieger, Theology and Philosophy Librarian

Hesburgh Libraries has just acquired the first (and only) edition of  De laude monasticae religionis opusculum (Paris, 1513) by the Flemish theologian Josse Clichtove (1472?-1543). This prolific Catholic apologist of the Reformation era wrote a spirited defense of monasticism. In this work, he attacked the anti-monastic views of the famed Christian humanist, Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536), although Erasmus is not mentioned by name in the text. This would be the first of numerous polemical exchanges between the two.

In addition to Notre Dame’s copy, there are only six other North American holdings of this title.

 


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Color Our Collections: Vatican and Piranesi exhibits

Today’s coloring sheets comes from items on display in two of our ongoing exhibits: Vestigia Vaticana and the July spotlight exhibit on a recent acquisition, three works of Piranesi. The Vatican exhibit is open through mid-August, while the Piranesi exhibit closes at the end of this week.

Enjoy, and if you have the time please come in and see the full exhibits!

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ColorOurCollections-Piranesi

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“Vestigia Vaticana” Exhibit Opens

Frag_I_39-1r-cropped-v2Manuscripts, incunabula, seals, maps, engravings, and printed books from the thirteenth century to the present highlight how the Holy Father has left his mark on society. These materials from RBSC, together with a great bull on loan from Saint Mary’s College, are featured in the new exhibit “Vestigia Vaticana.” The exhibit’s opening coincides with the conference The Promise of the Vatican Library, being held May 8–10, 2016, at the University of Notre Dame.

These materials are like the Vatican’s footprints. They provide a trail for us to follow to get a glimpse of the official acts of the Holy Father, of books that belonged to popes, of events the general public wasn’t privy to. Take a stroll through the exhibit to see these papal bulls, apostolic briefs, a papal conclave print, a ground plan of Rome, and various other pieces.

Recent Acquisition: St. Fulgentius’ Works and the Homilies of St. Charles Borromeo

by Alan Krieger, Theology and Philosophy Librarian

Hesburgh Libraries recently acquired the important Latin works of Saint Fulgentius (468-533) and Saint Charles Borromeo (1538-1584).

BOO_004278527_pt1-001rThe first is a printed edition of the Latin works of St. Fulgentius, a North African bishop who, in the tradition of St. Augustine, vigorously defended orthodox doctrines on the Trinity and original sin against Arianism and Pelagianism. The volume (Opera B. Fvlgentii Aphri, episcopi Rvspensis . . . item opera Maxentii Iohannis) also includes the works of his lesser known contemporary, Joannes Maxentius, and was printed by the famed German publisher Anton Koberger in 1520. Koberger is best known for publishing the Liber cronicarum (Nuremberg Chronicle), a landmark incunable.

BOO_004300389-t1-00f_gIn addition, Hesburgh Libraries acquired volumes 1-5 of the first complete critical edition of Saint Charles Borromeo’s homilies, entitled Homiliae (Mediolani, 1747-48) and published as a 6-volume set. Saint Charles Borromeo’s was one of the giants of the Catholic Reformation. As Archbishop of Milan (1564-1584), Saint Charles was a leader in implementing the reforms enacted at the Council of Trent (1545-1563), contributing to the creation of the new Catechism commissioned by the Council (published in 1566) and establishing numerous seminaries, colleges, and communities for the education of those preparing for the priesthood.

 


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Recent Acquisition: Loome Catholic Modernism Collection

by Jean McManus, Catholic Studies Librarian

The Hesburgh Libraries recently acquired the Thomas M. Loome Collection in Catholic Modernism, which comprehensively covers books on Modernism in Catholic thought, with over 1500 volumes. The modernist movement, from the late 19th into the 20th century, concerned theological, philosophical, and methodological insights applied to the Church’s engagement with the modern world. The controversies generated by this debate by many European and American Catholics led to censure, papal encyclicals, and excommunications. The themes resonated and were in many ways resolved in the course of Vatican II, and can certainly be said to be relevant to the global church today.

The printed works cover output from Great Britain, France, Italy, and Germany, but also include primary works for Modernism in the Netherlands, U.S., Switzerland, and Austria. Most of these printed works were published during the years 1895-1912, but also include subsequent studies and monographs on Modernism and individual Modernists.

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1893 manuscript (MSE-MD 3824-063) and 1928 letter to Gwen Green (MSE-MD 3824-104), both written by Friedrich von Hügel.

In addition to books, the collection includes manuscript material from several principal thinkers, including George Tyrrell (letters) and Friedrich von Hügel (correspondence with other thinkers and relatives). Thomas Loome, the compiler of the collection (and former owner/bookseller of Loome Theological Books, Stillwater, MN), has written widely on modernism, and the collection includes his extensive research notes, reprints, copies of archival sources, and correspondence concerning his research and the debates.

The Loome Catholic Modernism Collection monographs are housed in Rare Books and Special Collections, and can be found in the ND Catalog with the keywords “Loome Catholic Modernism Collection.” The manuscript and archival materials are being processed, and are accessible for use in the Special Collections reading room. Contact the department for more information about using the collection.

 


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