Gartenstraße 19 (Raum 201), 72074 Tübingen
09/2015 - 03/2016
an der Universität Tübingen
Research master Mittelalterlichen Geschichte an der Universität Utrecht
mit der Abschlussarbeit 'Beyond the manuscript. Inquiries into a ninth century local priest and his social environment by means of his handbook (BSB Clm 14508)’
09/2013 - 04/2014
Master Mittelalterlichen Geschichte
an der Universität Utrecht (Abgekündigt nach Überweisung an den Research master)
09/2009 - 08/2013
an der Universität Utrecht
Betreuung: Prof. Dr. Steffen Patzold, Prof. Dr. Andreas Holzem, Dr. Carine van Rhijn (Universität Utrecht)
In the recent years there has been a lot of scholarly attention for Charlemagne and his practice of empire at the level of the aristocratic and ecclesiastical elite. The level of the Carolingian governmental grassroots, on the other hand, have not been explored as much. However, thanks to recent studies, priests and their role in local communities have come to be the subject of current research. New evidence in the form manuscripts for local priests provides an overview of the material that they used to manage their daily tasks in attending to their flocks. The great variety of content shows that the interpretations of the Christian faith varied greatly and that there was a lot of doctrinal flexibility. Priests’ handbooks functioned exactly on this border of high and low society, and are therefore an interesting display of the interpretation and implementation of the high-brow ideas of ‘correctio’ at a rural and local level, which, therefore, makes it a fitting starting point for research on priests and their social environment.
In order to examine the social environment of ninth-century priests two clusters of manuscripts have been selected. The first group consists out of thirteen composite manuscripts that have been used by clergy, and all contain at least one ‘expositio’ on the Lord’s Prayer. The group is interesting because it enables an analogous comparison of one typical text and provides us hence with an insight into the different ways of teaching the Lord’s Prayer as part of the correctio-movement within various environments in a rather large area. Furthermore, it should reveal something of how the supposed audience of an exposition indirectly influenced its form and content.
The second group of manuscripts contains two codices: one large compendium used in a school or library as a reference work, and a codex that was probably compiled by using the former as its source, which was then used by a local priest. The relationship between these two represents the transfer of knowledge from a codex made in an intellectual environment with an educational purpose, to a manuscript created with a practical aim for a rural setting. Additionally, both manuscripts include a compilation of sacramentarial prayers that have a similar relation as the codices at large, and therefore allow a detailed examination of the choices that the compilers made while transferring and transforming religious knowledge to create a text that suited their needs.
To bridge the gap between the priest and his social environment the concept of ‘social logic’ will be used. By looking for the social logics of a text additional material, such as charters, royal or episcopal capitularies or polyptyques, will be used to contextualize the content of the priestly handbooks and to connect and interpret this content in the historical environment in which it was created. However, since the original concept was only used for narrative sources, a new way of interpretation is needed for medieval composite manuscripts. That is why both groups of codices function as test cases in which the limitations of the newly suggested procedure can be explored.