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Biblical Exegesis

Exegesis is the branch of theology which investigates and expresses the true sense of Sacred Scripture .

The exegete does not inquire which books constitute Sacred Scripture , nor does he investigate their genuine text, nor, again, does he study their double authorship. He accepts the books which, according to the concurrent testimony of history and ecclesiastical authority, belong to the Canon of Sacred Scripture . Obedient to the decree of the Council of Trent, he regards the Vulgate as the authentic Latin version, without neglecting the results of sober textual criticism , based on the readings found in the other versions approved by Christian antiquity, in the Scriptural citations of the Fathers, and in the more ancient manuscripts. With regard to the authorship of the Sacred Books, too, the exegete follows the authoritative teaching of the Church and the prevalent opinions of her theologians on the question of Biblical inspiration. Not that these three questions concerning the Canon, the genuine text, and the inspiration of Sacred Scriptures exert no influence on Biblical exegesis: unless a book forms part of the Canon, it will not be the subject of exegesis at all; only the best supported readings of its text will be made the basis of its theological explanation; and the doctrine of inspiration with its logical corollaries will be found to have a constant bearing on the results of exegesis. Still, exegesis, as such, does not deal with these three subjects; the reader will find them treated in the articles CANON OF THE OLD TESTAMENT ; CANON OF THE NEW TESTAMENT ; TEXTUAL CRITICISM ; and INSPIRATION.

The early Reformers were wont to claim that the genuine text of the inspired and canonical books is self-sufficient and clear. This contention does not owe its origin to the sixteenth century. The words of Origen (De princip., IV), St. Augustine (De doctr. christ., I-III), and St. Jerome (ad Paulin., ep. liii, 6, 7) show that similar views existed among the sciolists in the early age of the Church. The exegetical results flowing from the supposed clearness of the Bible may be inferred from the fact that one century after the rise of the Reformation Bossuet could give to the world two volumes entitled, "A History of the Variations of the Protestant Churches". A Protestant theologian, S. Werenfels, sets forth the same truth in a telling epigram:

Hic liber est in quo sua quærit dogmata quisque,
Invenit et pariter dogmata quisque sua,

which may be rendered in an English paraphrase:

Men ope this book, their favourite creed in mind;
Each seeks his own, and each his own doth find.

Agreeing with the warning of the Fathers, Pope Leo XIII, in his Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus", insisted on the difficulty of rightly interpreting the Bible . "It must be observed", he wrote,

that in addition to the usual reasons which make ancient writings more or less difficult to understand, there are some which are peculiar to the Bible . For the language of the Bible is employed to express, under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, many things which are beyond the power and scope of the reason of man -- that is to say, Divine mysteries and all that is related to them. There is sometimes in such passages a fullness and a hidden depth of meaning which the letter hardly expresses and which the laws of grammatical interpretation hardly warrant. Moreover, the literal sense itself frequently admits other senses, adapted to illustratedogma or to confirm morality. Wherefore, it must be recognized that the Sacred Writings are wrapt in a certain religious obscurity, and that no one can enter into their interior without a guide; God so disposing, as the Holy Fathers commonly teach, in order that men may investigate them with greater ardour and earnestness, and that what is attained with difficulty may sink more deeply into themind and heart; and, most of all, that they may understand that God has delivered the Holy Scripture to the Church, and that in reading and making use of His word, they must follow theChurch as their guide and their teacher.

But it is not our purpose so much to prove the need of Biblical exegesis as to explain its aim, describe its methods, indicate the various forms of its results, and outline its history. Exegesis aims at investigating the sense of Sacred Scripture ; its method is contained in the rules of interpretation; its results are expressed in the various ways in which the sense of the Bible is wont to be communicated; its history comprises the work done by Christian and Jewish interpreters, by Catholics and Protestants. We shall endeavour to consider these various elements under the four heads:

I. Sense of Sacred Scripture;
II. Hermeneutics;
III. Sacred Rhetoric;
IV. History of Exegesis.

I. SENSE OF SACRED SCRIPTURE

In general, the sense of Sacred Scripture is the truth actually conveyed by it. We must well distinguish between the sense and the signification of a word. A good dictionary will give us, in the case of most words, a list of their various possible meanings or significations; but no reader will be tempted to believe that a word has all these meanings wherever it occurs. The context or some other restrictive element will determine the meaning in which each word is used in any given passage, and this meaning is the sense of the word. The signification of the word is its possible meaning; the sense of a word is its actual meaning in any given context. A sentence, like a word, may have several possible significations, but it has only one sense or meaning intended by the author. Here, again, the signification denotes the possible meaning of the sentence, while the sense is the meaning which the sentence here and now conveys. In the case of the Bible , it must be kept in mind that God is its author, and that God, the Sovereign Lord of all things, can manifest truth not merely by the use of words, but also by disposing outward things in such a way that one is the figure of the other. In the former case we have the literal sense; in the latter, the typical (cf. St. Thomas, Quodl., vii, Q. vi, a. 14).

(1) LITERAL SENSE (i) What is the Literal Sense?

The literal sense of Sacred Scripture is the truth really, actually, and immediately intended by its author. The fact that the literal sense must be really intended by the author distinguishes it from the truth conveyed by any mere accommodation. This latter applies a writer's language, on the ground of analogy, to something not originally meant by him. Again, since the literal sense is actually intended by the writer, it differs from the meaning conveyed only virtually by the text. Thus the reader may come to know the literary capacity of the author from the style of his writing; or he may draw a number of logical inferences from the writer's direct statements; the resultant information is in neither case actually intended by the writer, but it constitutes the so-called derivative or consequent sense. Finally, the literal sense is limited to the meaning immediately intended by the writer, so that the truth mediately expressed by him does not fall within the range of the literal sense. It is precisely in this point that the literal sense differs from the typical. To repeat briefly, the literal sense is not an accommodation based on similitude or analogy ; it is not a mere inference drawn by the reader; it is not an antitype corresponding to the immediate contents of the text as its type; but it is the meaning which the author intends to convey really , not by a stretch of the imagination ; actually , not as a syllogistic potency; and immediately , i.e., by means of the language, not by means of the truth conveyed by the language.

(ii) Division of the Literal Sense

What has been said about the immediate character of the literal sense must not be misconstrued in such a way as to exclude figurative language from its range. Figurative language is really a single, not a double, sign of the truth it conveys. When we speak of "the arm of God ", we do not imply that God really is endowed with such a bodily member, but we directly denote his power of action (St. Thomas, Summa, I, Q. i, a. 10, ad 3um). This principle applies not merely in the metaphor, the synecdoche, the metonymy, or the irony, but also in those cases in which the figure extends through a whole sentence or even an entire chapter or book. The very name allegory implies that the real sense of the expression differs from its usual verbal meaning. In Matt., v, 13 sqq., e.g., the sentence, "You are the salt of the earth" etc., is not first to be understood in its nonfigurative sense, and then in the figurative; it does not first class the Apostles among the mineral kingdom, and then among the social and religious reformers of the world, but the literal meaning of the passage coincides with the truth conveyed in the allegory. It follows, therefore, that the literal sense comprises both the proper and the figurative. The fable, the parable, and the example must also be classed among the allegorical expressions which signify the intended truth immediately. It is true that in the passage according to which the trees elect a king ( Judges 9:6-21 ), in the parable of the prodigal son ( Luke 15:11 sqq. ), and in the history of the Good Samaritan ( Luke 10:25-37 ) a number of words and sentences are required in order to construct the fable, the parable, and the example respectively; but this does not interfere with the literal or immediate sense of the literary devices. As such they have no meaning independent of, or prior to, the moral lesson which the author intends to convey by their means. It is easily granted that the mechanical contrivance we call a watch immediately indicates the time in spite of the subordinate action of its spring and wheels; why, then, should we question the truth that the literary device called fable, or parable, or example, immediately points out its moral lesson, though the very existence of such a device presupposes the use of a number of words and even sentences?

(iii) Ubiquity of the Literal Sense

The Fathers of the Church were not blind to the fact that the literal sense in some Scripture passages appears to imply great incongruities, not to say insuperable difficulties. On the other hand, they regarded the language of the Bible as truly human language, and therefore always endowed with a literal sense, whether proper or figurative. Moreover, St. Jerome (in Is., xiii, 19), St. Augustine (De tent. Abrah. serm. ii, 7), St. Gregory (Moral., i, 37) agree with St. Thomas (Quodl., vii, Q. vi, a. 14) in his conviction that the typical sense is always based on the literal and springs from it. Hence if these Fathers had denied the existence of a literal sense in any passage of Scripture, they would have left the passage meaningless. Where the patristic writers appear to reject the literal sense, they really exclude only the proper sense, leaving the figurative. Origen (De princ., IV, xi) may be regarded as the only exception to this rule; since he considers some of the Mosaic laws as either absurd or impossible to keep, he denies that they must be taken in their literal sense. But even in his case, attempts have been made to give to his words a more acceptable meaning (cf. Vincenzi, "In S. Gregorii Nysseni et Origenis scripta et doctrinam nova recensio", Rome, 1864, vol. II, cc. xxv-xxix). The great Alexandrian Doctor distinguishes between the body, the soul, and the spirit of Scripture. His defendants believe that he understands by these three elements its proper, its figurative, and its typical sense respectively. He may, therefore, with impunity deny the existence of any bodily sense in a passage of Scripture without injury to its literal sense. But it is more generally admitted that Origen went astray on this point, because he followed Philo's opinion too faithfully.

(iv) Is the Literal Sense One or Multiple?

There is more solid ground for a diversity of opinion concerning the unicity of the literal sense contained in each passage of Sacred Scripture . This brings us face to face with a double question: (a) Is it possible that a Scripture passage has more than one literal sense? (b) Is there any Biblical text which actually has more than one literal meaning? It must be kept in mind that the literal sense is taken here in the strict meaning of the word. It is agreed on all sides that a multiple consequent sense or a multiple accommodation may be regarded as the rule rather than the exception. Nor is there any difficulty about the multiple literal sense found in various readings or in different versions of the same text; we ask here whether one and the same genuine Scripture text may have more than one literal sense.

(a) Possibility of a Multiple Literal Sense

Since a word, and a sentence too, may have more meanings than one, there is no a priori impossibility in the idea that a Scriptural text should have more than one literal sense. If the author of Scripture really intends to convey the truth contained in the various possible meanings of a text, the multiple literal sense will be the natural resultant. Some of the expressions found in the writings of the Fathers seem to emphasize the possibility of having a multiple literal sense in Sacred Scripture .

(b) Actual Occurrence of a Multiple Literal Sense

The subject becomes more complicated if we ask whether a multiple literal sense is not merely possible, but is actually found anywhere in Scripture. There is no good authority for its frequent occurrence; but does it really exist even in the few Scriptural passages which seem to contain it, such as Psalm 2:7 ; Isaiah 53:4-8 ; Daniel 9:27 ; John 11:51 ; 2:19 ? Did God wish in these texts to convey a multiple literal sense? Revelation, as coming down to us in Scripture and tradition, furnishes the only clue to the solution of the question.

Arguments for the Multiple Literal Sense

The advocates of a multiple literal sense advance the following arguments for their view: First, Sacred Scripture supposes its existence in several passages. Thus Heb., i, 5, understands Ps. ii, 7 (this day have I begotten thee), of the Divine generation of the Son; Acts, xiii, 33, understands the text of the Resurrection ; Heb., v, 5, of the eternal priesthood of Christ. Again, the Latin Vulgate and the Septuagint, together with I Pet., ii, 24, understand Is. liii, 4 (he hath borne our infirmities), of our sins ; Matt., viii, 17, understands the words of our bodily ailments. And again, I Mach., 1, 57, applies some words of Dan., ix, 27, to his own subject, while Matt., xxiv, 15, represents them as a prophecy to be fulfilled in the destruction of the Holy City. Finally, John, ii, 19, was understood by the Jews in a sense different from that intended by Jesus Christ ; and John, xi, 51, expresses two disparate meanings, one intended by Caiphas and the other by the Holy Ghost. The second argument is, that tradition too upholds the existence of a multiple sense in several passages of the Bible . Its witnesses are St. Augustine (Conf., XII, xxvi, xxx, xxxi; De doctr. christ., III, xxvii; etc.), St. Gregory the Great (in Ezech., iii, 13, Lib. I, hom. x, n. 30 sq.), St. Basil, St. Chrysostom, St. Jerome, St. Bernard, and, among the Scholastics, St. Thomas (I, Q. i, a. 10; "De potent.", IV, 1; "in II sent.", dist. xii, Q. i, a. 2, ad 7um), Card. Cajetan (ad I, Q. i, a. 10), Melchior Cano (Loc. theol., Lib. II, c. xi, ad 7 arg., ad 3 rat.), Bañez (ad I, Q. i, a. 10), Sylvius (ad id.), John of St. Thomas (I, Q. i, disp. ii, a. 12), Billuart (De reg. fidei, dissert. i, a. 8), Vasquez, Valentia, Molina, Serrarius, Cornelius a Lapide , and others.

Reasons against the Multiple Literal Sense

Patrizi, Beelen, Lamy, Cornely, Knabenbauer, Reitmayr, and the greater number of recent writers deny the actual existence of a multiple literal sense in the Bible ; they urge the following reasons for their opinion: First, the Bible is written in human language; now, the language of other books usually presents only one literal sense. Second, the genuine sense of Sacred Scripture must be discovered by means of the rules of hermeneutics. A commentator would render these rules meaningless, if he were to look for a second literal sense of a passage after discovering one true meaning by their means. Third, commentators implicitly assume that any given text of Scripture has only one literal sense; for after finding out the various meanings which are philologically probable, they endeavour to ascertain which of them was intended by the Holy Ghost . Fourth, a multiple literal sense would create equivocation and confusion in the Bible . Finally, the multiple sense in Scripture would be a supernatural fact wholly depending on the free will of God. We cannot know it independently of revelation ; its actual occurrence must be solidly proved from Scripture or tradition. The patrons of the multiple literal sense have not thus far advanced any such proof.

(1) Where Scripture appeals to disparate meanings of the same passage, it does not necessarily consider each of them as the literal sense. Thus Heb., i, 5, may represent Ps. ii, 7, as referring literally to the eternal generation, but Acts, xiii, 33, may consider the Resurrection, and Hebr., v, 5, the eternal priesthood of Christ as necessary consequences. Matt., viii, 17, applies the consequent sense of Is., liii, 4, to the cure of bodily ailments; I Mach., i, 57, merely accommodates some words of Dan., ix, 27, to the writer's own time ; in John, ii, 19, and xi, 51, only the meaning intended by the Holy Ghost is the literal sense, though this may not have been understood when the words in question were spoken.

(2) The testimony of the Fathers and the Scholastic theologians is not sufficient in our case to prove the existence of a dogmatic tradition as to the actual occurrence of the multiple literal sense in Scripture. There is no trace of it before the time of St. Augustine; this great Doctor proposes his view not as the teaching of tradition, but as a pious and probable opinion. The expressions of the other Fathers, excepting perhaps St. Gregory the Great, urge the depth and wealth of thought contained in Scripture, or they refer to meanings which we technically call its typical, derivative, or consequent sense, and perhaps even to mere accommodations of certain passages. Among the Scholastics, St. Thomas follows the opinion of St. Augustine, at least in one of the alleged passages (De potent., IV, 1), and a number of the later Scholastics follow the opinion of St. Thomas. The other early Scholastics maintain rather the opposite view, as may be seen in St. Bonaventure (IV Sent. dist. xxi, p. I, dub. 1) and Alexander of Hales (Summa, I, Q. i, m. 4, a. 2).

(v) The Derivative or Consequent Sense

The consequent or derivative sense of Scripture is the truth legitimately inferred from its genuine meaning. It would be wrong to identify the consequent sense with the more latent literal sense. This depth of the literal sense may spring from the fact that the predicate changes somewhat in its meaning if it be applied to totally different subjects. The word wise has one meaning if predicated of God, and quite another if predicated of created beings. Such a variety of meaning belongs to the literal meaning in the strict sense of the word. The conseguent sense may be said to be the conclusion of a syllogism one of whose premises is a truth contained in the Bible . Such inferences can hardly be called the sense of a book written by a human author; but God has foreseen all the legitimate conclusions derived from Biblical truths, so that they may be said, in a certain way, to be His intended meaning. The Bible itself makes use of such inferences as if they were based on Divine authority. St. Paul ( 1 Corinthians 1:31 ) quotes such an inference based on Jer., ix, 23, 24, with the express addition, "as it is written"; in I Cor., ix, 10, 11, he derived the consequent sense of Deut., xxv, 4, indicating the second premise, while in I Tim., v, 18, he states the consequent sense of the same passage without adding the second premise. Theologians and ascetical writers have, therefore, a right to utilize dogmatic and moral inferences from the genuine sense of Sacred Scripture . The writings of the Fathers illustrate this principle most copiously.

(vi) Accommodation

By accommodation the writer's words are applied, on the ground of analogy, to something not originally meant by him. If there be no analogy between the original and the imposed meaning, there is no accommodation of the passage, but rather a violent perversion of its true meaning; such a contorted meaning is not merely outside, but against, the genuine sense. Accommodation is usually divided into two classes: extensive and allusive. Extensive accommodation takes the words of the Bible in their genuine sense, but applies them to a new subject. Thus the words, he "was found perfect, just, and in the time of wrath he was made a reconciliation", which Ecclus., xliv, 17, predicates of Noah, are often applied to other saints. Allusive accommodation does not employ the words of Scripture in their genuine sense, but gives them an entirely different meaning; here the analogy does not exist between the objects, but between the verbal expressions. Ps. xvii, 26, 27, "With the holy, thou wilt be holy ; and with the innocent man thou wilt be innocent; and with the elect thou wilt be elect: and with the perverse thou wilt be perverted", expresses originally the attitude of God to the good and the wicked; but by accommodation these words are often used to show the influence of companionship. That the use of accommodation is legitimate, may be inferred from its occurrence in Scripture, in the writings of the Fathers, and from its very nature. Examples of accommodation in Scripture may be found in Matt., vii, 23 (cf. Ps. vi, 9), Rom., x, 18 (cf. Ps. xviii, 5), II Cor., viii, 15 (cf. Exodus 16:18 ), Heb., xiii, 5 (cf. Joshua 1:5 ), Apoc., xi, 4 (cf. Zechariah 4:14 ). The liturgical books and the writings of the Fathers are so replete with the use of accommodation that it is needless to refer to any special instances. Finally, there is no good reason for interdicting the proper use of accommodation, seeing that it is not wrong in itself and that its use does not involve any inconvenience as far as faith and morals are concerned. But two excesses are to be avoided: first, it cannot be maintained, that all the citations from the Old Testament which are found in the New are mere accommodations. Similar contentions are found in the writings of those who endeavour to destroy the value of the Messianic prophecies ; they are not confined to our days, but date back to Theodore of Mopsuestia and the Socinians. The Fifth Ecumenical Synod rejected the error of Theodore; besides, Christ Himself ( Matthew 22:41 sq. ; cf. Psalm 109:1 ), St. Peter ( Acts 3:25 sq. ; cf. Genesis 12:3 ; 18:18 ; 22:18 ), and St. Paul ( Hebrews 1:5 ; 5:5 ; Acts 13:33 ; cf. Psalm 2:7 ) base theological arguments on Old-Testament citations, so that these latter cannot be regarded as mere accommodations. Secondly, we must not exceed the proper limits in the use of accommodation. This we should do, if we were to present the meaning derived from accommodation as the genuine sense of Scripture, or if we were to use it as the premise in an argument, or again if we were to accommodate the words of Scripture to ridiculous, absurd, or wholly disparate subjects. The fourth session of the Council of Trent warns most earnestly against such an abuse of Sacred Scripture .

(2) TYPICAL SENSE

The typical sense has its name from the fact that it is based on the figurative or typical relation of Biblical persons, or objects, or events, to a new truth. This latter is called the antitype, while its Biblical correspondent is named the type. The typical sense is also called the spiritual, or mystical, sense: mystical, because of its more recondite nature ; spiritual, because it is related to the literal, as the spirit is related to the body. What we call type is called shadow, allegory, parable, by St. Paul (cf. Romans 5:14 ; 1 Corinthians 10:6 ; Hebrews 8:5 ; Galatians 4:24 ; Hebrews 9:9 ); once he refers to it as antitype ( Hebrews 9:24 ), though St. Peter applies this term to the truth signified ( 1 Peter 3:21 ). Various other designations for the typical sense have been used by the Fathers of the Church ; but the following questions are of more vital importance.

(i) Nature of the Typical Sense

The typical sense is the Scriptural truth which the Holy Ghost intends to convey really, actually, but not immediately. Inasmuch as its meaning is really conveyed, the typical sense differs from accommodation; inasmuch as its meaning is actually expressed, it differs from the consequent sense; inasmuch as its meaning is not immediately signified, it differs from the literal sense. While we arrive at the latter immediately by way of the literary expression, we come to know the typical sense only by way of the literal. The text is the sign conveying the literal sense, but the literal sense is the sign expressing the typical. The literal sense is the type which by a special design of God is directed to signify its antitype. Three conditions are necessary to constitute a type:

  • It must have its own true and historical existence independently of the antitype; e.g., the intended immolation of Isaac would be an historical fact, even if Jesus Christ had not died.
  • It must not be referred to the antitype by its very nature. This prohibits the similitude from serving as a type, on account of its antecedent likeness to its object.
  • God himself must have established the reference of the type to its antitype; this excludes objects which are naturally related to others.

The necessity of these three conditions explains why a type cannot be confounded with a parable, or an example, or a symbol, or a similitude, or a comparison, or a metaphor, or a symbolic prophecy -- e.g., the statue seen in the dream of Nabuchodonosor. It should be added, however, that at times the type may be expressed by the Scriptural representation of a subject rather than by the strict literal sense of Scripture. Gen., xiv, 18, e.g., introduces Melchisedech without reference to his genealogy ; hence Heb., vii, 3, represents him "without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life", and makes him as such a type of Jesus Christ. Thus far we have spoken about the typical sense in its strict sense. In a wider sense, all persons, events, or objects of the Old Testament are sometimes considered as types, provided they resemble persons, events, or objects in the New Testament, whether the Holy Ghost has intended such a relationship or not. The Egyptian Joseph is in this way frequently represented as a type of St. Joseph, the foster-father of Christ.

(ii) Division of the Typical Sense

The division of the typical sense is based on the character of the type and the antitype. The antitype is either a truth to be believed, or a boon to be hoped for, or again a virtue to be practised. This gives us a triple sense -- the allegorical, the anagogical, and the tropological, or moral. The objects of faith in the Old Testament centred mainly around the future Messias and his Church. The allegorical sense may, therefore, be said to refer to the future or to be prophetic. The allegory here is not to be sought in the literary expression, but in the persons or things expressed. This division of the typical sense was expressed by the Scholastics in two lines:

Littera gesta docet; quid credas, allegoria;
Moralis quid agas; quo tendas, anagogia.

Jerusalem, e.g., according to its literal sense, is the Holy City; taken allegorically, it denotes the Church Militant; understood tropologically, it stands for the just soul ; finally, in its anagogical sense, it stands for the Church Triumphant. If the division of the typical sense be based on the type rather than the antitype, we may distinguish personal, real, and legal types. They are personal if a person is chosen by the Holy Ghost as the sign of the truth to be conveyed. Adam, Noah, Melchisedech, Moses, Josue, David, Solomon, and Jonas are types of Jesus Christ ; Agar with Ismael, and Sara with Isaac are respectively the types of the Old and the New Testament. The real types are certain historical events or objects mentioned in the Old Testament, such as the paschal lamb, the manna, the water flowing from the rock, the brazen serpent, Sion, and Jerusalem. Legal types are chosen from among the institutions of the Mosaic liturgy, e.g., the tabernacle, the sacred implements, the sacraments and sacrifices of the Old Law, its priests and Levites.

(iii) The Existence of the Typical Sense

Scripture and tradition agree in their testimony for the occurrence of the typical sense in certain passages of the Old Testament. Among the Scriptural texts which establish the typical sense, we may appeal to Col., ii, 16-17; Heb., viii, 5; ix, 8-9; Rom., v, 14; Gal., iv, 24; Matt., ii, 15 (cf. Hosea 11:1 ); Heb., i, 5 (cf. 2 Samuel 7:14 ). The testimony of tradition concerning this subject may be gathered from Barnabas (Ep., 7, 8, 9, 12, etc.), St. Clement of Rome ( 1 Corinthians 12 ), St. Justin, Dial. c. Tryph., civ, 42), St. Irenæus (Adv. hær., IV, xxv, 3; II, xxiv, 2 sqq.; IV, xxvi, 2), Tertullian (Adv. Marc., V, vii); St. Jerome (Ep. liii, ad Paulin., 8), St. Thomas (I, Q. i, a. 10), and a number of other patristic writers and Scholastic theologians. That the Jews agree with the Christian writers on this point, may be inferred from Josephus (Antiq., XVII, iii, 4; Pro m. Antiq., n. 4; III, vi, 4, 77; De bello Jud., V, vi, 4), the Talmud (Berachot, c. v, ad fin.; Quiddus, fol. 41, col. 1), and the writings of Philo (de Abraham ; de migrat. Abrahæ de vita contempl.), though this latter writer goes to excess in the allegorical interpretation. The foregoing tradition may be confirmed by the language of the liturgy and by the remains of Christian archæology (Kraus, "Roma sotterranea," pp. 242 sqq.). Striking instances of the liturgical proof may be seen in the Preface of the Mass for Easter, in the Blessing of the Paschal Candle, and in the Divine Office recited on the feast of Corpus Christi. All Catholic interpreters readily grant that in some passages of the Old Testament we have a typical sense besides the literal; but this does not appear to be granted with regard to the New Testament, at least not subsequently to the death of Jesus Christ. Distinguishing between the New Testament as it signifies a collection of books, and the New Testament as it denotes the Christian economy, they grant that there are types in the New-Testament books, but only as far as they refer to the pre-Christian economy. For the New Testament has brought us the reality in place of the figure, light in place of darkness, truth in place of shadow (cf. Patrizi, "De interpretatione Scripturarum Sacrarum", p. 199, Rome, 1844). On the other hand, it is urged that the New Testament is the figure of glory, as the Old Testament was the figure of the New (St. Thom., Summa, I, Q. i, a. 10). Again, in Scripture the literal sense applies to what precedes, the typical to what follows. Now, even in the New Testament Christ and His Body precedes the Church and its members; hence, what is said literally of Christ or His Body, may be interpreted allegorically of the Church, the mystical body of Christ, tropologically of the virtuous acts of the Church's members, anagogically of their future glory (St. Thom., Quodl., VII, a. 15, ad 5um). Similar views are expressed by St. Ambrose (in Ps. xxx, n. 25), St. Chrysostom (in Matt., hom. lxvi), St. Augustine (in Joh., ix), St. Gregory the Great (Hom. ii, in evang. Luc., xviii), St. John Damascene (De fide orth., iv, 13); besides, the bark of Peter is usually regarded as a type of the Church, the destruction of Jerusalem as a type of the final catastrophe.

(iv) Has Everything in the Old Testament a Typical Sense?

If such passages as Luke 24:44 , 1 Corinthians 10:11 , be taken out of their context, they suggest the ubiquity of the typical sense in the Old Testament ; the context limits these texts to their proper range. If some of the Fathers, e.g. St. Augustine (De doct. christ., III, xxii) and St. Jerome (Ad Dard., Ep. cxxix, 6; Ep. ad Eptes. iii, 6), appear to assert the ubiquity of the typical sense, their language refers rather to the figurative than the spiritual sense. On the other hand, Tertullian (De resurrect. carn., c. xx), St. Augustine (De civ. Dei., XVII, iii; C. Faust., XXII, xciv), St. Jerome (in Joann., c. i; cf. in Jer., xxvii, 3, 9; xxix, 14), and St. Thomas (Quodl., vii, a. 15, ad 5um), explicitly reject the opinion which maintains that the whole of the Old Testament has a typical sense. The opposite opinion does not appeal to reason ; what could be the typical sense, e.g., of the command to love the Lord our God ( Deuteronomy 6:5 )?

(v) How Can the Typical Sense Be Known?

In the typical sense God does not merely select an existing person or object as the sign of a future person or object, but he directs the course of nature in such a way that the very existence of the type, however independent it may be in itself, refers to the antitype. Man, too, can, in one or another particular case, perform an action in order to typify what he will do in the future. But as the future is not under his complete control, such a way of acting would be ludicrous rather than instructive. The typical sense is, therefore, properly speaking, confined to God's own book. Hence the criteria which serve for the interpretation of profane literature will not be sufficient to detect the typical sense. The latter is a supernatural fact depending entirely on the free will of God ; nothing but revelation can make it known to us, so that Scripture or tradition must be regarded as the source of any solid argument in favour of the existence of the typical sense in any particular passage. Where the typical sense really exists, it expresses the mind of God as truly as the literal sense; but we must be careful against excess in this regard. St. Augustine is guilty of this fault in his spiritual interpretation of the thirty-eight years in John, v, 5, and of the one hundred and fifty-three fishes in John, xxi, 11. Besides, it must be kept in mind that not all the minutiæ connected with the type have a definite and distinct meaning in the antitype. It would be useless labour to search for the spiritual meaning of every detail connected with the paschal lamb, e.g., or with the first Adam. The exegete ought to be especially careful in the admission of typical prophecies, and of anything that would resemble the method of the Jewish Cabbalists.

(vi) The Theological Value of the Typical Sense

Father Perrone (Præl. theol. dogm., IX, 159) believes it is the common opinion of theologians and commentators that no theological argument can be based on the typical sense. But if we speak of the typical sense which has been revealed as such, or which has been proved as such from either Scripture or tradition, it conveys the meaning intended by God not less veraciously than the literal sense. Hence it furnishes solid and reliable premises for theological conclusions. The inspired writers themselves do not hesitate to argue from the typical sense, as may be seen in Matthew 2:15 (cf. Hosea 11:1 ), and Hebrews 1:5 (cf. 2 Samuel 7:14 ). Texts whose typical sense is only probable yield only probable theological conclusions; such is the argument for the Immaculate Conception based on Esther 15:13. If St. Thomas (Summa, I, Q. i, a. 10, ad 1um; Quod-lib., VII, a. 14, ad 4um) and other theologians differ from our position on this question, their view is based on the fact that the existence of the types themselves must first be theologically proved, before they can serve as premises in a theological argument.

II. HERMENEUTICS

The interpretation of a writing has for its object to find the ideas which the author intended to express. We do not consider here the so-called authentic interpretation or the writer's own statement as to the thought he intended to convey. In interpreting the Bible scientifically, its twofold character must always be kept in view: it is a Divine book, in as far as it has God for its author; it is a human book, in as far as it is written by men for men. In its human character, the Bible is subject to the same rules of interpretation as profane books; but in its Divine character, it is given into the custody of the Church to be kept and explained, so that it needs special rules of hermeneutics. Under the former aspect, it is subject to the laws of the grammatico-historical interpretation; under the latter, it is bound by the precepts of what we may call the Catholic explanation.

(1) HISTORICO-GRAMMATICAL INTERPRETATION

The grammatico-historical interpretation implies three elements: first, a knowledge of the various significations of the literary expression to be interpreted; secondly, the determination of the precise sense in which the literary expression is employed in any given passage; thirdly, the historical description of the idea thus determined. What has been said in the preceding paragraphs sufficiently shows the difference between the signification and the sense of a word or a sentence. The importance of describing an idea historically may be exemplified by the successive shades of meaning attaching to the concept of Messias, or of Kingdom of God.

(i) Significations of the Literary Expression

The signification of the literary expression of the Bible is best learned by a thorough knowledge of the so-called sacred languages in which the original text of Scripture was written, and by a familiar acquaintance with the Scriptural way of speaking.

(a) Sacred Languages

St. Augustine (De doctr. christ., II, xi; cf. xvi) warns us that "the knowledge of languages is the great remedy against unknown signs. Men of the Latin tongue need two others for a thorough knowledge of the Divine Scriptures, viz, the Hebrew and the Greek, so that recourse may be had to the older copies, if the infinite variety of the Latin translators occasions any doubt." Pope Leo XIII, in the Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus", agrees with the great African Doctor in urging the study of the sacred languages. "It is most proper", he writes, "that professors of Sacred Scripture and theologians should master those tongues in which the Sacred Books were originally written; and it would be well that church students also should cultivate them, more especially those who aspire to academic degrees. And endeavours should be made to establish in all academic institutions -- as has already been laudably done in many -- chairs of the other ancient languages, especially the Semitic, and of other subjects connected therewith, for the benefit principally of those who are intended to profess sacred literature." Nor can it be urged that for the Catholic interpreter the Vulgate is the authentic text, which can be understood by any Latin scholar. The pontiff considers this exception in the Encyclical quoted: "Although the meaning of the Hebrew and Greek is substantially rendered by the Vulgate, nevertheless wherever there may be ambiguity or want of clearness, the ' examination of older tongues,' to quote St. Augustine, will be useful and advantageous." Recourse to the original text is considered the only scholarly approach to any great work of literature. A translation is never a perfect reproduction of the original; no language can fully express the thoughts conveyed in another tongue, no translator is capable of seizing the exact shades of all the truths contained in any work, and in case of Biblical versions, we have often good reason for doubt as to the genuineness of their readings.

(b) Scriptural

Language The Scriptural language presents several difficulties peculiar to itself. First, the Bible is not written by one author, but presents in almost every book the style of a different writer. Secondly, the Bible was not written at a single period; the Old Testament covers the time between Moses and the last Old-Testament writer, i.e. more than one thousand years, so that many words must have changed their meaning during this interval. Thirdly, the Biblical Greek is not the classical language of the Greek authors with whom we are acquainted; up to about fifteen years ago, Biblical scholars used to speak about New-Testament Greek, they compiled New-Testament lexicons, and wrote New-Testament grammars. The discovery of the Egyptian papyri and other literary remains has broken down this wall of separation between the language of the New Testament and that of the time in which it was written; with regard to this point, our present time may be considered as a period of transition, leading up to the composition of lexicons and grammars that will rightly express the relation of the Biblical Greek to the Greek employed in profane writings. Fourthly, the Bible deals with the greatest variety of topics, requiring a corresponding variety of vocabulary; moreover, its expressions are often figurative, and therefore subject to more frequent changes of meaning than the language of profane writers. How are we to become acquainted with the Scriptural language in spite of the foregoing difficulties? St.Augustine (De doctr. christ., II, ix sqq.) suggests the continual reading of the Bible as the first remedy, so that we may acquire "a familiarity with the language of the Scriptures ", He adds to this a careful comparing of the Bible text with the language of the ancient versions, a process calculated to remove some of the native ambiguities of the original text. A third help is found, according to the same great Doctor, in the diligent reading of the works of the Fathers, since many of them formed their style by a constant reading of Holy Scripture (loc. cit., II, xiii, xiv). Nor must we omit to study the writings of Philo and Josephus, the contemporaries of the Apostles and the historians of their nation. They are helpful illustrations of the cultured language of the Apostolic time. The study of the etymology of the sacred languages is another means of becoming acquainted with the languages themselves. For a proper understanding of the etymology of Hebrew words, the knowledge of the cognate languages is requisite; but here it must be kept in mind that many derivatives have a meaning quite different from the signification of their respective radicals, so that an argument based on etymology alone is open to suspicion.

Sense of the literary expression

After the foregoing rules have aided the interpreter to know the various significations of the words of the sacred text, he must next endeavour to investigate in what precise sense the inspired writer employed his expressions. He will be assisted in this study by attending to the subject-matter of the book or chapter, to its occasion and purpose, to the grammatical and logical context, and to the parallel passages. Whatever meaning of the literary expressions is not in keeping with the subject-matter of the book, cannot be the sense in which the writer employed it. The same criterion directs us in the choice of any particular shade of meaning and in the limitation of its extent. The subject-matter of the Epistles to the Romans and the Galatians, e.g., shows in what sense St. Paul used the expressions law and works of the law; the sense of the expressions spirit of God, wisdom and understanding, which occur in Exodus 31:3, must be determined in the same way. The occasion and purpose of a book or of a passage will often determine whether certain expressions must be taken in their proper or figurative sense, whether in a limited or an unlimited extent. Attention to this point will aid us in explaining aright such passages as John 6:53 sqq.; Matthew 10:5; Hebrews 1:5-7; etc. Thus we shall understand the first of these passages of the real flesh and blood of Christ, not of their figure; we shall see the true import of Christ's command contained in the second passage, "Go ye not into the way of the Gentiles, and into the city of the Samaritans enter ye not"; again we shall appreciate the full weight of the theological argument in favour of the eternal generation of the Son as stated in the third passage, contained in the Epistle to the Hebrews.

The context is the third aid in determining the precise sense in which each single word is used by the writer. We need not insist on the necessity of explaining an expression in accordance with its grammatical environment. The commentator must make sure of the grammatical connection of an expression, so as not to do violence to the rules of inflection or of syntax. The so-called poetical parallelism may be considered as constituting part of grammar taken in a wider sense. But the logical context, too, requires attention; a commentator must not explain any expression in such a sense as to make the author contradict himself, being careful to assign to each word a meaning that will best agree with the thought of the sentence of the chapter, and even of the book. Still, it must not be overlooked that the context is sometimes psychological rather than logical; in lyric poetry, in the words of the Prophets, or in animated dialogues, thoughts and sentiments are at times brought into juxtaposition, the logical connection of which is not apparent. Finally, there is a so-called optical context which is found in the visions of the Prophets. The inspired seer may perceive grouped together in the same vision events which are widely separated from each other in time and space.

The so-called real or verbal parallelisms will aid the commentator in determining the precise sense in which the inspired writer employed his words. In case of verbal parallelism, or in the recurrence of the same literary expressions in different parts of the inspired books, it is better to explain the language of Paul by that of Paul, the expressions of John by those of John, than to explain Paul by Matthew, and John by Luke. Again, it is more natural to explain an expression occurring in the Fourth Gospel by another found in the same book than by a parallel passage taken from the Apocalypse. Finally, it should be kept in mind that parallelism of thought, or real parallelism, is a more reliable aid in finding the exact sense of a passage than a mere material recurrence of a sentence or a phrase.

Historical setting

The inspired writers connected with their words the ideas which they themselves possessed, and which they knew to be intelligible to their contemporaries. When they spoke of a house, they expressed a habitation to which their contemporaries were accustomed, not a contrivance in use among the barbarians. In order to arrive at the precise sense of a passage, we must therefore bear in mind its historical setting, we must consult the testimony of history. The true sense of the Bible cannot be found in an idea or a thought historically untrue. The commentator must therefore be well acquainted with sacred history and sacred archæology, in order to know, to a certain extent at least, the various customs, laws habits, national prejudices, etc. under the influence of which the inspired writers composed their respective books. Otherwise it will be impossible for him to understand the allusions, the metaphors, the language, and the style of the sacred writers. What has been said about the historico-grammatical interpretation of Scripture is synopsized, as it were, in the Encyclical already quoted: "The more our adversaries contend to the contrary, so much the more solicitously should we adhere to the received and approved canons of interpretation. Hence, while weighing the meanings of words, the connection of ideas, the parallelism of passages, and the like, we should by all means make use of such illustrations as can be drawn from opposite erudition of an external sort."

Catholic interpretation

Since the Church is the official custodian and interpreter of the Bible, her teaching concerning the Sacred Scriptures and their genuine sense must be the supreme guide of the commentator. The inferences which flow from this principle are partly negative, partly positive.

Negative directions

The following directions are called negative not because they do not imply a positive attitude of mind or because they do not lead to positive results, but because they appear to emphasize at first sight the avoidance of certain methods of proceeding which would be legitimate in the exegesis of profane books. They are based on what the Church teaches concerning the sacred character of the Bible.

Avoid irreverence

Since the Bible is God's own book, its study must be begun and prosecuted with a spirit of reverence and prayer. The Fathers insist on this need in many passages. St. Athanasius calls the Scriptures the fountain that quenches our thirst for justice and supplies us with the doctrine of piety (Ep. fest. xxxix); St. Augustine (Reply to Faustus XIII.18) wishes them to be read for a memorial of our faith, for the consolation of our hope, and for an exhortation to charity; Origen (Ep. ad Gregor. Neocæs., c. iii) considers pious prayer as the most essential means for the understanding of the Divine Scriptures; but he wishes to see humility joined with prayer; St. Jerome (In Mich., I, x) agrees with St. Augustine (De doctr. christ., III, xxxvii) in regarding prayer as the principal and most necessary aid for the understanding of the Scriptures. We might add the words of other patristic writers, if the alleged references were not clear and explicit enough to remove all doubt on the subject.

No error in Scripture

Since God is the principal Author of Sacred Scripture, it can contain no error, no self-contradiction, nothing contrary to scientific or historical truth. The Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus" is most explicit in its statement of this prerogative of the Bible: "All the books which the Church receives as sacred and canonical, are written wholly and entirely, with all their parts, at the dictation of the Holy Ghost; and so far is it from being possible that any error can coexist with inspiration, that inspiration not only is essentially incompatible with error, but excludes and rejects it as absolutely and necessarily, as it is impossible that God Himself, the Supreme Truth, can utter that which is not true." The Fathers agree with this teaching almost unanimously; we may refer the reader to St. Jerome (In Nah., I, iv), St. Irenæus (C. hær., II, xxviii), Clement of Alexandria (Stromata VII.16), St. Augustine (Reply to Faustus II.2; cf. "In Ps. cxviii", serm. xxxi, 5; "Ad Hier.", ep. lxxxii, 2, 22; "Ad Oros. c. Prisc.", xi), St. Gregory the Great (Præf. in Job, n. 2). The great African Doctor suggests a simple and radical remedy against apparent errors in the Bible: "Either my codex is wrong, or the translator has blundered, or I do not understand."

But inerrancy is not the prerogative of everything that happens to be found in the Bible; it is restricted to what the inspired writers state as their own, unless they quote the words of a speaker who is infallible in his utterances, the words of an Apostle, e.g., or of a Divinely authorized speaker, whether angel or man (cf. Luke 1:42, 67; 2:25; 2 Maccabees 7:21), or again words regarded as having Divine authority either by Scripture (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:19; Galatians 4:30) or by the Church (e.g., the Magnificat). Biblical words that do not fall under any of these classes carry merely the authority of the speaker, the weight of which must be studied from other sources. Here is the place to take notice of a decision issued by the Biblical Commission, 13 Feb., 1905, according to which certain Scriptural statements may be treated as quotations, though they appear on the surface to be the utterances of the inspired writer. But this can be done only when there is certain and independent proof that the inspired writer really quotes the words of another without intending to make them his own. Recent writers call such passages "tacit" or "implicit" citations.

The inerrancy of Scripture does not allow us to admit contradictions in its statements. This is understood of the genuine or primitive text of the Bible. Owing to textual corruptions, we must be prepared to meet contradictions in details of minor importance; in weightier matters such discrepancies have been avoided even in our present text. Discrepancies which may appear to obtain in matters of faith or morals should put the commentator on his guard that the same Biblical expressions are not everywhere taken in the same sense, that various passages may differ from each other as the complete statement of a doctrine differs from its incomplete expression, as a clear presentation differs from its obscure delineation. Thus "works" has one meaning in James, ii, 24, another in Rom., iii, 28; "brothers" denotes one kind of relationship in Matthew 12:46, quite a different kind in most other passages; John 14:28 and 10:30, Acts 8:12, and Matthew 28:19, are respectively opposed to each other as a clear statement is opposed to an obscure one, as an explicit one to a mere implication. In apparent Biblical discrepancies found in historical passages, the commentator must distinguish between statements made by the inspired writer and those merely quoted by him (cf. 1 Samuel 31:9, and 2 Samuel 1:6 sqq.), between a double account of the same fact and the narrative of two similar incidents, between chronologies which begin with different starting-points, finally between a compendious and a detailed report of an event. Lastly, apparent discrepancies which occur in prophetical passages necessitate an investigation, whether the respective texts emanate from the Prophets as Prophets (cf. 2 Samuel 7:3-17), whether they refer to the same or to similar subjects (the destruction of Jerusalem, e.g., and the end of the world), whether they consider their subject from the same point of view (e.g. the suffering and the glorious Messias), whether they use proper or figurative language. Thus the Prophet Nathan in his private capacity encourages David to build the Temple (2 Samuel 7:3), but as Prophet he foretells that Solomon will build the house of God (ibid., 13).

The inerrancy of Scripture excludes also any contradiction between the Bible and the certain tenets of science. It cannot be supposed that the inspired writers should agree with all the various hypotheses which scientists assume today and reject tomorrow; but the commentator will be required to harmonize the teaching of the Bible with the scientific results which rest on solid proof. This rule is clearly laid down by the Encyclical in the words of St. Augustine: "Whatever they can really demonstrate to be true of physical nature, we must show to be capable of reconciliation with our Scriptures, and whatever they assert in their treatises which is contrary to these Scriptures of ours, that is to Catholic faith, we must either prove as well as we can to be entirely false, or at all events we must, without the smallest hesitation, believe it to be so" (De Gen. ad litt., I, xxi, xli). But the commentator must also be careful "not to make rash assertions, or to assert what is not known as known" (St. Aug., in Gen. op. imperf., ix, 30). The Encyclical appeals here again to the words of the great African Doctor (St. Aug., de Gen. ad litt., II, ix, xx): "[The Holy Ghost] who spoke by them [the inspired writers], did not intend to teach men these things [i.e., the essential nature of the things of the visible universe], things in no way profitable unto salvation." The pontiff continues: "Hence they . . . described and dealt with things in more or less figurative language, or in terms which were commonly used at the time, and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even by the most eminent men of science. Ordinary speech primarily and properly describes what comes under the senses; and somewhat in the same way, the sacred writers — as the Angelic Doctor reminds us (Summa Theologiæ I.70.1 ad 3um) — 'went by what visibly appeared', or put down what God, speaking to men, signified in a way men could understand and were accustomed to." In Genesis 1:16, e.g., the sun and the moon are called two great lights; in Joshua 10:12, the sun is commanded to stand still; in Eccl., i, 5, the sun returns to its place; in Job 26:11, the firmament appears solid and brazen; in other passages the heavens are upheld by columns, and God rides on the clouds of heaven.

Finally, the commentator must be prepared to deal with the seeming discrepancies between Biblical and profane history. The considerations to be kept in mind here are similar to those laid down in the preceding paragraph. First, not all statements found in profane sources can be regarded a priori as Gospel truth; some of them refer to subjects with which the writers were imperfectly acquainted, others proceed from party-feeling and national vanity, others again are based on imperfectly or only partially translated ancient documents. Secondly, the Bible does not ex professo teach profane history or chronology. These topics are treated only incidentally, in as far as they are connected with sacred subjects. Hence it would be wrong to regard Scripture as containing a complete course of history and chronology, or to consider the text of its historical portions above suspicion of corruption. Thirdly, we must keep in mind the words of St. Jerome (in Jer., xxviii, 10): "Many things in Sacred Scripture are related according to the opinion of the time in which they are said to have happened, and not according to objective truth"; and again (in Matthew 14:8): "According to the custom of Scripture, the historian relates the opinion concerning many things in accordance with the general belief at that time." Father Delattre maintains (Le Criterium à l'usage de la Nouvelle Exégèse Biblique, Liège, 1907) that according to St. Jerome the inspired writers report the public opinion prevalent at the time of the events related, not the public opinion prevalent when the narrative was written. This distinction is of greater practical importance than it, at first, seems to be. For Father Delattre only grants that the inspired historian may write according to sensible appearances, while his opponents contend that he may follow also the so-called historic appearances. Finally, the first two decisions of the Biblical Commission must be mentioned in this connection. Some Catholic writers had attempted to remove certain historical difficulties from the sacred text either by considering the respective passages as tacit or implied quotations from other authors, for which the inspired writers did not in any way vouch; or by denying that the sacred writers vouch, in any way, for the historical accuracy of the facts they narrate, since they use these apparent facts merely as pegs on which to hang some moral teaching. The Biblical Commission rejected these two methods by decrees issued respectively 13 Feb. and 23 June, 1905, adding, however, that either of them may be admitted in the case when, due regard being paid to the sense and judgment of the Church, it can be proved by solid argument that the sacred writer either really quoted the sayings or documents of another without speaking in his own name, or did not really intend to write history, but only to propose a parable, an allegory, or another non-historical literary concept.

Positive directions

St. Irenæus represents the teaching of the early Church, when he writes that the truth is to be learned where the charismata of God are, and that Holy Scripture is safely interpreted by those who have the Apostolic succession (Against Heresies IV.26.5). Vincent of Lérins appears to sum up the teaching of the Fathers on this subject when he writes that on account of the great intricacies of various errors it is necessary that the line of Prophetic and Apostolic interpretation be directed according to the rule of ecclesiastical and Catholic teaching. The Vatican Council emphasizes the decree of the Council of Trent (Sess. IV, De edit. et usu sacr. libr.) when it teaches (Constit. de fide cathol., c. ii) that "in things of faith and morals belonging to the building up of Christian doctrine, that is to be considered the true sense of Holy Scripture which has been held and is held by our Holy Mother the Church, whose place it is to judge of the true sense and interpretation of the Scriptures; and therefore that it is permitted to no one to interpret Holy Scripture against such sense or also against the unanimous agreement of the Fathers". Hence flow the following principles.

Defined texts

The Catholic commentator is bound to adhere to the interpretation of texts which the Church has defined either expressly or implicitly. The number of these texts is small, so that the commentator can easily avoid any transgression of this principle. The Council of Trent teaches that Rom., v, 12, refers to original sin (Sess. V, cc. ii, iv), that John 3:5 teaches the absolute necessity of the baptism of water (Sess. V, c. iv; Sess. VII, De bapt., c. ii), that Matthew 26:26 sq. is to be understood in the proper sense (Sess. XIII, cap. i); the Vatican Council gives a direct definition of the texts, Matthew 16:16 sqq. and John 21:15 sqq. Many more Scripture texts are indirectly defined by the definition of certain doctrines and the condemnation of certain errors. The Council of Nicæa, e.g., showed how those passages ought to be interpreted on which the Arians relied in their contention that the Word was a creature; the Fifth Ecumenical Council (II Constantinople) teaches the right meaning of many prophecies by condemning the interpretation of Theodore of Mopsuestia.

Patristic interpretation

Pope Leo XIII, in his Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus", repeats the principles concerning the authority of the Fathers laid down by the Vatican and Tridentine Councils: "The Holy Fathers, 'to whom, after the Apostles, the Church owes its growth — who have planted, watered, built, governed, and cherished it' (Aug., C. Julian., II, x, 37) — the Holy Fathers, we say, are of supreme authority whenever they all interpret in one and the same manner any text of the Bible, as pertaining to the doctrine of faith or morals; for their unanimity clearly evinces that such interpretation has come down from the Apostles as a matter of Catholic faith." Three conditions are, therefore, required in order that the patristic authority may be absolutely decisive: first, they must interpret texts referring to matters of faith or morals; secondly, they must speak as witnesses of Catholic tradition, not merely as private theologians; thirdly, there must be a moral unanimity in their interpretation. This unanimity is not destroyed by the silence of some of the foremost Fathers, and is sufficiently guaranteed by the consentient voice of the principal patristic writers living at any critical period, or by the agreement of commentators living at various times; but the unanimity is destroyed if some of the Fathers openly deny the correctness of the interpretation given by the others, or if they explain the passage in such a way as to render impossible the explanation given by others. But the Encyclical warns us to treat the opinion of the Fathers with reverence, even if there is no unanimity: "The opinion of the Fathers", says the holy pontiff, "is also of very great weight when they treat of these matters in their capacity of doctors, unofficially; not only because they excel in their knowledge of revealed doctrine and in their acquaintance with many things which are useful in understanding the Apostolic books, but because they are men of eminent sanctity and of ardent zeal for the truth, on whom God has bestowed a more ample measure of his light."

The analogy of faith

Here again the Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus" is our guide: "In the other passages" it reads, "the analogy of faith should be followed and Catholic doctrine, as authoritatively proposed by the Church, should be held as the supreme law; for, seeing that the same God is the author both of the Sacred Books and of the doctrine committed to the Church, it is clearly impossible that any teaching can by legitimate means be extracted from the former, which shall in any respect be at variance with the latter." This principle has a double influence on the interpretation of Scripture, a negative and a positive influence. First, the commentator cannot admit in Scripture a statement contrary to the teaching of the Church; on the other hand, the agreement of an explanation with the doctrine of the Church does not prove its correctness, since more than one explanation may agree with the ecclesiastical teaching. Secondly, the Catholic interpreter must explain the obscure and partial teaching of the Scriptures by the clear and complete teaching of the Church; the passages, e.g., which refer to the Divine and human nature of Christ, and to the power of binding and loosing, find their explanation and their complement in Catholic tradition and the conciliar definitions. And here we must keep in mind what the Encyclical adds concerning doctrine which comes down to us in a less authoritative channel: "The authority of other Catholic interpreters is not so great; but the study of Scripture has always continued to advance in the Church, and, therefore, these commentaries also have their own honourable place, and are serviceable in many ways for the refutation of assailants and the explanation of difficulties."

Sacred rhetoric

The genuine teaching of Sacred Scripture is useful to all, but few have the time necessary to investigate it. It is for this reason that Scripture students express their results in writing so as to share their light with as many as possible. Sixtus Senensis [Bibliotheca sancta (Venice, 1575), I, pp. 278 sqq.] enumerates twenty-four various forms in which such Scriptural explanations may be expressed. But some of these methods are no longer in use; others may be reduced to fewer and more general heads. According to the end which the writer has in view, they may be divided into theoretical and practical or historico-dogmatic and moral treatises; considering the persons for whom they were written, they are either popular or learned expositions; but if their literary form be made the basis of division, which is the common and more rational principle of division, there are five kinds of Biblical exegesis: the version, the paraphrase, the gloss and scholion, the dissertation, and the commentary.

The version

The version is the translation of the Bible from one language into another, especially from its original into the vernacular language. A version made directly from the original text is called immediate, while it is mediate if it be based directly on another version. It is verbal if it renders the very words; in ease it renders the meaning rather than the words, it is a free version. A good version must be faithful and clear, i.e. it must express the thought without any alteration; it must reproduce the literary form, whether it be prosaic or poetic, figurative or proper; and it must be easily intelligible, as far as the character of the two languages in question permits this. This shows the difficulty of making a good translation; for it implies not merely a thorough knowledge of the two languages, but also an accurate insight into the genuine meaning of Sacred Scripture.

The paraphrase

The paraphrase expresses the genuine sense of Scripture in continuous and more expansive form. The version removes the difficulties which arise from the fact that the Bible is written in a foreign language; the paraphrase elucidates also the difficulties of thought. For it supplies the transitions and middle terms omitted by the author; it changes the foreign and involved phraseology of the original into idiomatic sentences; it amplifies the brief statements of the original by adding definitions, indicating causes and reasons, and illustrating the text by reference to parallel passages. A good paraphrase must render the thought of the original most accurately, and must at the same time be brief and clear; there is danger, in this form of exposition, of rendering obscure what has been clearly said in the original text.

The gloss and scholion

The version removes from the Scripture text the difficulties connected with the foreign language, the paraphrase elucidates the difficulties of thought; but there are still other difficulties connected with the Bible, which must be removed by means of notes. One kind of brief notes, called glosses, explains the difficulties connected with the words; another kind, called scholia, deals with variant readings, verbal difficulties, unknown persons, countries, and things, and with the connection of thought. Two celebrated series of glosses deserve special mention: the glossa ordinaria by Walafrid Strabo, and the glossa interlinearis by Anselm of Laon.

The dissertation

Origen, Eusebius, and St. Jerome were asked by their contemporaries concerning certain difficult texts of Scripture; a similar need of special elucidations of particular passages has been felt by the faithful of all ages. The answers to such questions we may call dissertations or treatises. It is understood that only really important texts ought to be made the subject of such scholarly explanations. In order to satisfy the inquisitive reader, the essayist should examine the text critically; he should state its various explanations given by other writers and weigh them in the light of the principles of hermeneutics; finally, he should give the true solution of the difficulty, prove it by solid arguments, and defend it against the principal exceptions.

The commentary

The commentary is a continuous, full, learned, well-reasoned, and complete explanation, touching upon not merely the more difficult passages, but everything that stands in need of elucidation. Hence the commentator must discuss all the variants, state and prove the genuine sense of the book he explains, add all the necessary personal, geographical, historical, ethnical information, and indicate the sources whence it is drawn, harmonize the single sentences with each other and with the scope of the entire book, consider its apparent contradictions, and explain the sense in which its quotations from the Old Testament must be understood. With a view of securing an orderly exposition, the author should premise the various historico-critical studies belonging to the whole book; he should divide and subdivide the book into its principal and subordinate parts, clearly stating the special subject of each; he should, finally, arrange the various opinions concerning disputed questions in a neatly distributed list, so as to lighten the work of the reader. What has been said sufficiently shows the qualities which a well-written commentary ought to possess; it must be faithful in presenting the genuine sense of Scripture; it must be clear, complete, and brief; and it ought to show the private work of the commentator by the light it throws on the more complicated questions. The commentaries which consist of mere lists of the patristic views on the successive texts of Scripture are called catenæ (q.v.).

Perhaps the homily may be added to the foregoing methods of Biblical exposition. It is written in a popular way, and is of a practical tendency. It is not concerned with the subtile and more difficult questions of Scripture, but explains the words of a Biblical section in the order in which they occur. A more elevated kind of homily seizes the fundamental idea of a Scriptural section, and considers the rest in relation to it. The Church has always encouraged such homiletic discourses, and the Fathers have left a great number of them in their writings.

History of exegesis

The history of exegesis shows its first beginnings, its growth, its decay, and its restoration. It points out the methods which may be safely recommended, and warns against those which rather corrupt than explain the Sacred Scriptures. In general, we may distinguish between Jewish and Christian exegesis.

Jewish exegesis

The Jewish interpretation of the Scriptures began almost at the time of Moses, as may be inferred from traces found both in the more recent canonical and the apocryphal books. But in their method of interpretation the Palestinian Jews differed from the Hellenistic.

Palestinian

All Jewish interpreters agree in admitting a double sense of Scripture, a literal and a mystical, though we must not understand these terms in their strictly technical sense.

(a) The literal exposition is mainly represented by the so-called Chaldee paraphrases or Targumim, which came into use after the Captivity, because few of the returning exiles understood the reading of the Sacred Books in their original Hebrew. The first place among these paraphrases must be given to the Targum Onkelos, which appears to have been in use as early as the first century after Christ, though it attained its present form only about A.D. 300-400. It explains the Pentateuch, adhering in its historical and legal parts to a Hebrew text which is, at times, nearer to the original of the Septuagint than the Massoretic, but straying in the prophetic and poetical portions so far from the original as to leave it hardly recognizable. — Another paraphrase of the Pentateuch is the Targum Pseudo-Jonathan, or the Jerusalem Targum. Written after the seventh century of our era, it is valueless both from a critical and an exegetical point of view, since its explanations are wholly arbitrary. — The Targum Jonathan, or the paraphrase of the Prophets, began to be written in the first century, at Jerusalem; but it owes its present form to the Jerusalem rabbis of the fourth century. The historical books are a fairly faithful translation from the original text; in the poetical portions and the later Prophets, the paraphrase often presents fiction rather than truth. — The paraphrase of the Hagiographa deals with the Book of Job, the Psalms, the Canticle of Canticles, Proverbs, Ruth, the Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, and Paralipomena. It was not written before the seventh century, and is so replete with rabbinic fiction that it hardly deserves the notice of the serious interpreter. The notes on Cant., Ruth, Lam., Eccles., and Esth. rest on public tradition; those on the other Hagiographa express the opinions of one or more private teachers; the paraphrase of Par. is the most recent and the least reliable.

(b) The method of arguing employed in the First Gospel and the Epistle to the Hebrews shows that the Jews before the coming of Christ admitted a mystical sense of Scripture; the same may be inferred from the letter of Pseudo-Aristeas and the fragment of Aristobulus. The Gospel narrative, e.g., Matthew 23:16 sqq., testifies that the Pharisees endeavoured to derive their arbitrary traditions from the Law by way of the most extraordinary contortions of its real meaning. The mystic interpretation of Scripture practised by the Jewish scholars who lived after the time of Christ, may be reduced to the following systems.

(aa) The Talmudists ascribed to every text several thousand legitimate meanings belonging either to the Halakhah or the Haggadah. The Halakhah contained the legal inferences derived from the Mosaic Law, all of which the Talmudists referred back to Moses himself; the Haggadah was the collection of all the material gathered by the Talmudists from history, archæology, geography, grammar, and other extra-Scriptural sources, not excluding the most fictitious ones. In their commentaries, these writers distinguished a twofold sense, the proper, or primitive, and the derivative. The former was subdivided into the plain and the recondite sense; the latter, into logical deductions, and inferences based on the way in which the Hebrew words were written or on association of ideas. As to the hermeneutical rules followed by the Talmudists, they were reduced to seven by Hillel, to thirteen by Ismael, and to thirty-two by R. José of Galilee. In substance, many of these principles do not differ from those prevalent in our day. The interpreter is to be guided by the relation of the genus to the species, of what is clear to what is obscure, of verbal and real parallelisms to their respective counterparts, of the example to the exemplified, of what is logically coherent to what appears to be contradictory, of the scope of the writer to his literary production. The commentaries written according to these principles are called Midrashim (plural of Midrash); the following must be mentioned: Mekhilta (measure, rule, law) explains Exodus 12:1-23, 30; 31:12-17; 35:1-4, and is variously assigned to the second or third century, or even to more recent times; it gives the Halakhah of the ceremonial rites and laws but contains also material belonging to the Haggadah. — Siphra explains the Book of Leviticus; Siphri, the Books of Numbers and Deuteronomy; Pesiqta, the Sabbatical sections. — Rabboth (plural of Rabba) is a series of Midrashim explaining the single books of the Pentateuch and the five Megilloth or the five Hagiographa which were read in the synagogues; the allegorical, anagogical, and moral sense is preferred to the literal, and the fables and sayings of the rabbis are highly valued. — Tanchuma is the first continuous commentary on the Pentateuch; it contains some valuable traditions, especially of Palestinian origin. — Yalqut Simoni contains annotations on all the books of the Old Testament.

(bb) The Caraites are related to the Talmudists, as the Sadducees were related to the Pharisees. They rejected the Talmudic traditions, just as the Sadducees refused to acknowledge the authority of the Pharisaic teaching (cf. Joseph., Ant., XVIII, x, 6). The Caraites derive their origin from Anan, born about A.D. 700, who founded this sect out of spite, because he had not obtained the headship of the Jews outside Palestine. From Bagdad, the place of its birth, the sect soon spread into Palestine and especially into the Crimea, so that about A.D. 750 it occasioned what is practically a schism among the Jews. The Caraites reject all tradition, and admit only the Mosaic Law. By means of Ismael's thirteen hermeneutical rules, they establish the literal sense of Scripture, and this they supplement by means of the syllogism and the consensus of the Synagogue. Owing to their rejection of authentic interpretation and their claim of private judgment, they have been called by some writers "Jewish Protestants".

Hellenistic

Generally speaking, the Alexandrian Jews were favourable to the allegorical explanation of Scripture, thus endeavouring to harmonize the inspired records with the principles of Greek philosophy. Eusebius has preserved specimens of this Hellenistic exegesis in the fragments of Aristobulus (Hist. Eccles., VII, xxxii; Præpar. evang., VIII, x) and in the letter of Pseudo-Aristeas (Præpar. evang., VIII, ix), both of whom wrote in the second century B.C. Philo attests that the Essenes adhered to the same exegetical principles (De vit. contempl., x); but Philo (died A.D. 39) himself is the principal representative of this manner of interpretation. According to Philo, Abraham symbolizes virtue acquired by doctrine; Isaac, inborn virtue; Jacob, virtue acquired by practice and meditation; Egypt denotes the body; Chanaan, piety; the dove, Divine wisdom, etc. (De Abraham, ii).

The Cabbalists exceeded the preceding interpreters in their allegorical explanation of Scripture. Traces of their system are found in the last pre-Christian centuries, but its full development did not take place till the end of the first millennium B.C. In accordance with their name, which is derived from a word meaning "to receive", the Cabbalists claimed to possess a secret doctrine received by way of tradition from Moses, to whom it had been revealed on Mount Sinai. They maintained that all earthly things had their heavenly prototypes or ideals; they believed that the literal sense of Scripture included the allegorical sense, as the body includes the soul, though only the initiated could reach this veiled meaning. Three methods helped to attain it: Gematria takes the numerical value of all the letters which make up a word or an expression and derives the hidden meaning from the resultant number; Notaricon forms new entire words out of the single letters of a word, or it forms a word out of the initial letters of the several words of a phrase; Temura consists in the transposition of the letters which make up a word, or in the systematic substitution of other letters. Thus they transpose the consonants of mal'akhi (my angel; Exodus 23:23) into Mikha'el (Michael). There is a twofold system of substitution: the first, Athbash, substitutes the last letter of the alphabet for the first, the second last for the second, etc.; the second system substitutes the letters of the second half of the alphabet for the corresponding letters of the first half. The Cabbalistic doctrine has been gathered in two principal books, one of which is called "Yeçirah", the other "Zohar".

We may add the names of the more prominent Jewish commentators: Saadya Gaon (b. 892; d. 942), in the Fayûm, Egypt, translated the whole of the Old Testament into Arabic and wrote commentaries on the same. — Moses ben Samuel ibn Chiqitilla, of Cordova, explained the whole of the Old Testament in Arabic, between A.D. 1050 and 1080; only fragments of his work remain. — Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac, known also under the names Rashi and Yarchi (b. about 1040, at Troyes; d. 1105), explained the whole of the Old Testament, except Par. and Esd., according to its literal sense, though he did not neglect the allegorical; he shows an anti-Christian tendency. — Rabbi Abraham ibn Ezra, often called Aben Ezra (b. about 1093 at Toledo, Spain; d. 1167 on the Island of Rhodes). Among his many other works he left an incomplete commentary on the Pentateuch and other parts of the Old Testament; he renders the literal sense faithfully without excluding the allegorical, e.g. in Cant. — Rabbi David Kimchi, called also Radak (b. 1170 at Narbonne; d. 1230), explained nearly all the books of the Old Testament in the literal sense, without excluding the spiritual; his anti-Christian feeling shows itself in his treatment of the Messianic prophecies. — Rabbi Moyses ben Maimon, commonly called Maimonides or Rambam (b. 1135 at Cordova, Spain; d. 1204 in Egypt), became a convert to Mohammedanism in order to escape persecution, then fled to Egypt, where he lived as a Jew, and where, for the guidance of those who could not harmonize their philosophical principles with the teaching of Sacred Scripture, he wrote his celebrated "Guide of the Perplexed", a work in which he presents some of the Biblical stories as mere literary expressions of certain ideas. — Rabbi Isaac Abarbanel (d. 1508), explained the Pentateuch, the prophetical books, and Daniel, adding often irrelevant matter and arguments against Christian revelation. — Rabbi Elias Levita (d. after 1542), is known as one of the best Jewish grammarians, and as the author of the work "Tradition of Tradition" in which he gives the history of Massoretic criticism. — Among the Caraite interpreters we must mention: Rabbi Jacob ben Ruben (twelfth century), who wrote brief scholia on all the books of Scripture; Rabbi Aaron ben Joseph (d. 1294), author of a literal commentary on the Pentateuch, the earlier Prophets, Isaias, the Psalms, and the Book of Job; Rabbi Aaron ben Elia (fourteenth century), who explained the Pentateuch. — Among the Cabbalists, Rabbi Moyses Nachmanides, also known as Ramban (d. about 1280), deserves mention on account of his explanation of the Pentateuch, which is several times quoted by Paul of Burgos. — The principal Jewish commentaries have been reprinted in the so-called Rabbinic Bibles which appeared at Venice, 1517; Venice, 1525, 1548, 1568, 1617; Basle, 1618; Amsterdam, 1724.

Christian exegesis

For the sake of clearness we may distinguish three great periods in Christian exegesis: the first ends about A.D. 604; the second brings us up to the Council of Trent; the third embraces the time after the Council of Trent.

First period (before 604)

The patristic period embraces three distinct classes of exegetes, the Apostolic and apologetical writers, the Greek Fathers, the Latin Fathers. The amount of exegetical literature produced by these three classes varies greatly; but its character is so distinctively proper to each of the three classes that we can hardly consider them under the same heading.

The apostolic Fathers and apologists

The early Christians made use of the Scriptures in their religious meetings as the Jews employed them in the synagogues, adding however the writings of the New Testament more or less completely to those of the Old. The Apostolic Fathers did not write any professional commentaries; their use of Scripture was incidental and casual rather than technical; but their citations and allusions show unmistakably their acceptance of some of the New-Testament writings. Neither do we find among the apologists' writings of the second century any professional treatises on Sacred Scripture. St. Justin and St. Irenæus are noted for their able defence of Christianity, and their arguments are often based on texts of Scripture. St. Hippolytus appears to have been the first Christian theologian who attempted an explanation of the whole of Scripture; his method we learn from the remaining fragments of his writings, especially of his commentary on Daniel. It may be said in general that these earliest Christian writers admitted both the literal and the allegorical sense of Scripture. The latter sense appears to have been favoured by St. Clement of Rome, Barnabas, St. Justin, St. Irenæus, while the literal seems to prevail in the writings of St. Hippolytus, Tertullian, the Clementine Recognitions, and among the Gnostics.

The Greek Fathers

The Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus" refers mainly to the Greek Fathers when it says: "When there arose, in various sees, catechetical and theological schools, of which the most celebrated were those of Alexandria and of Antioch, there was little taught in those schools but what was contained in the reading, the interpretation, and the defence of the Divine written word. From them came forth numbers of Fathers and writers whose laborious studies and admirable writings have justly merited for the three following centuries the appellation of the golden age of Biblical exegesis.

The Greek Fathers of the school of Alexandria

Tradition loves to trace the origin of the Alexandrian School back to the Evangelist St. Mark. Be that as it may, towards the end of the second century we find St. Pantænus president of the school; none of his writings are extant, but Eusebius (Church History V.10) and St. Jerome (Illustrious Men 36) testify that he explained Sacred Scripture. Clement of Alexandria ranks him among those who did not write any book (Stromata I.1); he died before 200. His successor was Clement of Alexandria, who had first been his disciple, and after 190 his colleague. Of his writings are extant "Cohortatio ad Gentiles", "Pædagogus", and "Stromata"; also the Latin translation of part of his eight exegetical books (Migne, P.G., IX, 729-740). Clement was followed by Origen (b. 185; d. 254), the principal glory of the whole school. Among his works, the greater part of which is lost, his "Hexapla" and his threefold explanation of Scripture, by way of scholia, homilies, and commentaries, deserve special notice. It was Origen, too, who fully developed the hermeneutical principles which distinguish the Alexandrian School, though they are not applied in their entirety by any other Father. He applied Plato's distinction of body, soul, and spirit to the Scriptures, admitting in them a literal, a moral, and a mystical or spiritual sense. Not that the whole of Scripture has this triple sense. In some parts the literal sense may be neglected, in others the allegorical may be lacking, while in others again the three senses may be found. Origen believes that the apparent discrepancies of the Evangelists can be explained only by means of the spiritual sense, that the whole ceremonial and ritual law must be explained mystically, and that all the prophetic utterances about Judea, Jerusalem, Israel, etc., are to be referred to the Kingdom of Heaven and its citizens, to the good and bad angels, etc. Among the eminent writers of the Alexandrian School must be classed Julius Africanus (c. 215), St. Dionysius the Great (d. 265), St. Gregory Thaumaturgus (d. 270), Eusebius of Cæsarea (d. 340), St. Athanasius (d. 373), Didymus of Alexandria (d. 397), St. Epiphanius (d. 403), St. Cyril of Alexandria (d. 444), and finally also the celebrated Cappadocian Fathers, St. Basil the Great (d. 379), St. Gregory Nazianzen (d. 389), and St. Gregory of Nyssa (d. 394). The last three, however, have many points in common with the School of Antioch.

The Greek Fathers of the school of Antioch

The Fathers of Antioch adhered to hermeneutical principles which insist more on the so-called grammatico-historical sense of the Sacred Books than on their moral and allegorical meaning. It is true that Theodore of Mopsuestia urged the literal sense to the detriment of the typical, believing that the New Testament applies some of the prophecies to the Messias only by way of accommodation, and that on account of their allegories the Canticle of Canticles, together with a few other books, should not be admitted into the Canon. But generally speaking, the Fathers of Antioch and Eastern Syria, the latter of whom formed the School of Nisibis or Edessa, steered a course midway between Origen and Theodore, avoiding the excesses of both, and thus laying the foundation of the hermeneutical principles which the Catholic exegete ought to follow. The principal representatives of the School of Antioch are St. John Chrysostom (d. 407); Theodore of Mopsuestia (d. 429), condemned by the Fifth Ecumenical Synod on account of his explanation of Job and the Canticle of Canticles, and in certain respects the forerunner of Nestorius; St. Isidore of Pelusium, in Egypt (d. 434), numbered among the Antiochene commentators on account of his Biblical explanations inserted in about two thousand of his letters; Theodoret, Bishop of Cyrus in Syria (d. 458), known for his Questions on the Octateuch, the Books of Kings and Paralipomenon, and for his Commentaries on the Psalms, the Cant., the Prophets, and the Epistles of St. Paul. The School of Edessa glories in the names of Aphraates who flourished in the first half of the fourth century, St. Ephraem (d. 373), Cyrillonas, Balæus, Rabulas,Isaac the Great, etc.

The Latin Fathers

The Latin Fathers, too, admitted a twofold sense of Scripture, insisting variously now on the one, now on the other. We can only enumerate their names: Tertullian (b. 160), St. Cyprian (d. 258), St. Victorinus (d. 297), St. Hilary (d. 367), Marius Victorinus (d. 370), St. Ambrose (d. 397), Rufinus (d. 410), St. Jerome (d. 420), St. Augustine (d. 430), Primasius (d. 550), Cassiodorus (d. 562), St. Gregory the Great (d. 604). St. Hilary, Marius Victorinus, and St. Ambrose depend, to a certain extent, on Origen and the Alexandrian School; St. Jerome and St. Augustine are the two great lights of the Latin Church on whom depend most of the Latin writers of the Middle Ages; at the end of the works of St. Ambrose is inserted a commentary on the Pauline Epistles which is now ascribed to Ps.-Ambrose or Ambrosiaster.

Second period (604-1546)

We consider the following nine centuries as one period of exegesis, not on account of their uniform productiveness or barrenness in the field of Biblical study, nor on account of their uniform tendency of developing any particular branch of exegesis, but rather on account of their characteristic dependence on the work of the Fathers. Whether they synopsized or amplified, whether they analysed or derived new conclusions from old premises, they always started from the patristic results as their basis of operation. Though during this period the labours of the Greek writers can in no way compare with those of the Latin, still it will be found convenient to consider them apart.

The Greek writers

The Greek writers who lived between the sixth and the thirteenth centuries composed partly commentaries, partly compilations. The Bishops of Cæsarea, Andreas and Arethas, who are variously assigned to the fifth and sixth, or to the eighth and ninth centuries, explained the Apocalypse; Procopius of Gaza (524) wrote on the Octateuch, Is., and Prov.; Hesychius of Jerusalem wrote probably about the end of the sixth century on Lev., Pss., Is., the Minor Prophets, and the concordance of the Gospels; Anastasius Sinaita (d. 599) left twelve books of allegorical comments on the hexaemeron; Olympiodorus (d. 620) and St. Maximus (d. 662) left more sober explanations than Anastasius, though they are not free from allegorism; St. John Damascene (d. 760) has many Scriptural explanations in his dogmatic and polemical works, besides writing a commentary on the Pauline Epistles, in which he follows Theodoret and St. Cyril of Alexandria, but especially St. Chrysostom. Photius (d. 891), Œcumenius (tenth century), Theophylactus (d. 1107), and Euthymius (d. 1118) were adherents of the Greek Schism, but their exegetical works deserve attention. — The above-named compilations are technically called catenæ. They furnish continuous explanations of various books of Scripture in such a way that they give after each text the various patristic explanations either in full or by way of a synopsis, usually adding the name of the particular Father whose opinion they had copied. Several of these catenæ have been printed, such as Nicephorus, on the Octateuch (Leipzig, 1772); B. Corderius, on the Pss. (Antwerp, 1643-1646); A. Schottius, on Prov. (Lyons, 1633); Angelo Mai, on Dan. (Rome, 1831); Cramer, on the New Testament (Oxford, 1638-1640).

The Latin writers

The Latin writers of this epoch may be divided into two classes: the pre-Scholastic and the Scholastic. The two are not of equal importance, but they are too different to be treated under the same heading.

The Latin writers (pre-Scholastic)

Among the many writers of this age who were instrumental in spreading the Biblical expositions of the Fathers, the following are deserving of notice: St. Isidore of Seville (d. 636), the Venerable Bede (d. 735), Alcuin (d. 804), Haymo of Halberstadt (d. 855), Rhabanus Maurus (d. 856), Walafrid Strabo (d. 849), who compiled the glossa ordinaria, Anselm of Laon (d. 1117), author of the glossa interlinearis, Rupert of Deutz (d. 1135), Hugh of St. Victor (d. 1141), Peter Abelard (d. 1142), and St. Bernard (d. 1153). The particular writings of each of these great men will be found under their respective names.

The Latin writers (Scholastics)

Without drawing a mathematical line of distinction between the writers of this period, we may say that the works which appeared in its beginning are remarkable for their logical and theological explanations; the subsequent works showed more philological erudition; and the final ones began to offer material for textual criticism. The first of these groups of writings coincides with the so-called golden age of scholastic theology which prevailed about the thirteenth century. Its principal representatives are so well known that we need only mention their names. Peter Lombard rightly heads the list (d. 1164), for he appears to be the first who fully introduced into his exegetical work the scholastic divisions, distinctions, definitions, and method of argumentation. Next follow Card. Stephen Langton (d. 1228), author of the chapter-divisions as they exist today in our Bibles; Card. Hugh of Saint-Cher (d. 1260), author of the so-called "Dominican Correctory", and of the first Biblical concordance; Blessed Albertus Magnus (d. 1280); St. Thomas Aquinas (d. 1274); St. Bonaventure (d. 1274); Raimondo Martini (d. 1290), who wrote the polemical work known as "Pugio Fidei" against the Moors and Jews; a number of other names might be added, but they are of less importance.

In 1311 Pope Clement V ordained, in the Council of Vienne, that chairs of the Oriental languages were to be erected in the principal universities, so that the Jews and Mohammedans might be refuted from their own sources. The philological results of this enactment may be seen in the celebrated "Postilla" of Nicholas of Lyra (d. 1340), a work which received notable additions by Paul of Burgos (d. 1435). Alphonsus Tostatus, called also Abulensis (d. 1455), and Denys the Carthusian (d. 1471), returned to the more scholastic method of interpretation; Laurentius Valla (d. 1457) applied the results of his Greek studies to the explanation of the New Testament, though he is unduly opposed to the Latin Vulgate.

Not to insist on the less illustrious exegetes of this period, we may pass on to those who applied to Scripture not merely their philological erudition, but also their acumen for textual criticism in its incipient state. Aug. Justiniani edited an Octapla of the Psalter (Genoa, 1516); Card. Ximenez finished his Complutensian Polyglot (1517); Erasmus published the first edition of his Greek New Testament (1517); Card. Cajetan (d. 1535) attempted an explanation of the Scriptures according to the original texts; Santes Pagninus (d. 1541) translated the Old and the New Testament anew from their original texts; a number of other scholars worked in the same field, publishing either new translations, or scholia, or again commentaries in which new light was shed on one or more books of the Sacred Scriptures.

Third period (after 1546)

A few decades before the Council of Trent, Protestantism began to make its inroads into various parts of the Church, and its results were felt not merely in the field of dogmatic theology, but also in Biblical literature. We shall, therefore, have to distinguish after this between Catholic and Protestant exegetes.

Catholic exegetes

Catholic exegesis subsequent to the Council of Trent may be divided into three stages: the first may be regarded as the terminus of the Scholastic period; the second forms the transition from the old to the new exegesis; and the third comprises the exegetical work of recent times. The first stage begins about the time of the Council of Trent, and ends about 1660; the second reaches to the beginning of the nineteenth century; and the third deals with our own times.

Catholic exegetes of the Golden Age (1546-1660)

We have spoken above of the golden age of Christian exegesis, as distinct from the exegesis of the Jews; the following period is by some writers called the golden age of Catholic exegesis, as distinct from the Biblical work done by Protestants. During this period more than 350 Catholic writers were engaged in Biblical study; we can only classify the work done, and indicate some of the principal writers engaged in it. The revised Clementine edition of the Vulgate appeared in 1592; the Antwerp Polyglot, in the years 1569-1572; the Paris Polyglot, in the years 1629-1645. — The introductory questions were treated by Sixtus Senensis (d. 1569), Christ. Adrichomius (d. 1585), Flaminius Nobilius (d. 1590), Ben. Arias Montanus (d. 1598), Petrus Morinus (d. 1608), Lucas Brugensis (d. 1619), de Tena (d. 1622), Joannes Morinus d. 1659), and Franc. Quaresmius (d. 1660). — All or most of the books of Scripture were interpreted by Sa (d. 1596), Mariana (d. 1624), Tirinus (d. 1636), a Lapide (d. 1637), Gordon (d. 1641), Menochius (d. 1655), de la Haye (1661). — Select books of both the Old and the New Testament were commented upon by Jansenius Gandavensis (d. 1575), Maldonatus (d. 1583), Ribera (d. 1591), Serarius (d. 1609), and Lorinus (d. 1634). — Certain books of the Old Testament were explained by Andreas Masius (d. 1573), Forerius (d. 1581), Pradus (d. 1595), Villalpandus (d. 1608), Genebrardus (d. 1597), Agellius (d. 1608), Pererius (d. 1610), Card. Bellarmine (d. 1621), Sanctius (d. 1628), Malvenda (d. 1628), de Pineda (d. 1637), Bonfrerius (d. 1642), de Muis (d. 1644), Ghislerius (d. 1646), de Salazar (d. 1646), and Corderius (d. 1655). — Finally, all or part of the books of the New Testament found interpreters in Salmeron (d. 1585), Card. Toletus* (d. 1596), Estius (d. 1613), de Alcasar (d. 1613), and Ben. Justiniani (d. 1622). It must be noted here that several of the foregoing writers admit a multiple literal sense; hence they represent various explanations of the same words as equally true.

Catholic exegetes of the transition period (1660-1800)

During this period, historical studies were more cultivated than scholastic. It is here that we meet with the father of the historical and critical introduction, Richard Simon (d. 1712). Frassen (d. 1711) adopts more of the scholastic method, but there is a return to the historical in the case of Bern. Lamy (d. 1715), Daniel Huet (d. 1721), and Nat. Alexander (d. 1722). The bibliography of exegesis was treated by Bartolocci (d. 1687), Imbonatus (d. 1694), Dupin (d. 1719), Lelong (d. 1721), and Desmolets (d. 1760). Old documents belonging to Scriptural studies were edited by B. de Montfaucon (d. 1741), P. Sabatier (d. 1742), and Jos. Blanchinus (d. 1764), while Calmet (d. 1757) and Bossuet (d. 1704) are noted for their exegetical work. Bukentop (d. 1710) has recourse to the original texts in order to explain doubtful or obscure readings in the Vulgate. If one compares this period with the preceding, one is struck with its poverty in great Biblical scholars; but textual criticism is fairly well represented by Houbigant (d. 1784) and de Rossi (d. 1831).

Catholic exegetes in recent times (after 1800)

The perturbed state of the Church at the beginning of the nineteenth century interfered with the peaceful pursuance of any kind of ecclesiastical study. After peace had returned, the study of Sacred Scripture flourished more lustily than ever. In three respects, the modern commentary surpasses that of any past age: First, the interpreter attends in our times not merely to the immediate context of a phrase or a verse, but to the whole literary form of the book, and to the purpose for which it was written; secondly, he is assisted by a most abundant wealth of historical information practically unknown in former days; thirdly, the philology of the sacred tongues has been highly cultivated during the last century, and its rich results are laid under contribution by the modern commentator. It would lead us too far here were we to rehearse the history of all the recent excavations and discoveries, the contents of the various tablets, papyri, and ostraka, the results of literary criticism, archæology, and history of religion; it must suffice to say that the modern commentator can leave none of these various sources of information unnoticed in so far as they bear on his special subject of investigation. It would be invidious to mention only some names of modern scholars, excluding others; still, they cannot all be enumerated. We may draw attention, however, to the French series of commentaries entitled "La Sainte Bible avec Commentaires"; the Latin "Cursus" published by Fathers Cornely, Knabenbauer, and von Hummelauer; the "Revue biblique" published by the Dominican Fathers; the "Biblische Zeitschrift"; the "Biblische Studien"; and the "Dictionnaire de la Bible". While the two series of commentaries offer the main points of information on each particular book of the Bible, as far as it could be ascertained at the time of their respective publication, the periodicals keep the reader informed concerning any new investigation or result worth knowing.

Protestant exegetes

It will be found convenient to divide Protestant exegesis into three periods. The first embraces the age of the so-called Reformers, 1517-1600; the second reaches down to the beginning of rationalism, 1600-1750; the third embraces the subsequent time.

Protestant exegetes (early Reformers)

The early Reformers did not introduce any new principles of interpretation. They may speak, at times, as if they admitted only the literal sense, but Melanchthon and Flacius Illyricus insist also on the importance of the allegorical. Their teaching concerning the multiplicity of the literal sense finds practical expression in their interpretation. The principle of free inquiry is claimed by the Reformers themselves, but neither theoretically nor practically granted to their followers. Both Luther's (d. 1546) and Calvin's (d. 1564) principles rest in the end on subjective considerations.

Protestant exegetes (from the Reformers to the Rationalists)

In order to secure some unity of interpretation, the first followers of the Reformers introduced the "analogy of faith" as the supreme hermeneutic rule. But since they claimed that Scripture was their rule of faith, they experienced difficulty in properly applying their canon of hermeneutics. Finally, they were forced to regard the contents of their symbols as first principles which needed no proof. But the writers of this period produced some noteworthy treatises on Biblical antiquities. Thus Lightfoot (d. 1675) and Schöttgen (d. 1751) illustrated New Testament questions from rabbinic sources; Reland (d. 1718) wrote on sacred geography; Bochart (d. 1667), on natural history; the two Buxtorfs, father (d. 1629) and son (d. 1664), Goodwin (d. 1665), and Spencer (d. 1695) investigated certain civil and religious questions of the Jews. Among those who explained the sacred text, the following are worthy of mention: Drusius (d. 1616), de Dieu (d. 1642), Grotius (d. 1645), Vitringa (d. 1722), Cocceius (Koch, d. 1669), and Clericus (d. 1736). Brian Walton (d. 1658) is celebrated for the edition of the London Polyglot, which easily surpasses all previous works of the same kind. The "Critici sacri" (London, 1660; Frankfort, 1696; Amsterdam, 1698), collected by John and Richard Pearsons, and the "Synopsis criticorum" (London, 1669; Frankfort, 1709), edited by Matt. Polus, may be regarded as fairly good summaries of the exegetical work of the seventeenth century.

Protestant exegetes (after the rise of Rationalism)

The Arminians, Socinians, the English Deists, and the French Encyclopedists refused to be bound by the "analogy of faith" as their supreme hermeneutic rule. They followed the principle of private judgment to its last consequences. The first to adhere to the principle of Biblical rationalism was Semler (d. 1791), who denied the Divine character of the Old Testament, and explained away the New by his "system of accommodation", according to which Christ and the Apostles only conformed to the views of the Jews. To discover the true teaching of Christ, we must first eliminate the Jewish doctrines, which may be learned from the books of Josephus, Philo, and other Jewish writers. — Kant (d. 1804) destroyed the small remnant of supernatural revelation by his system of "authentic interpretation"; we must not seek to find what the Biblical writers said, but what they should have said in order to remain within the range of the natural Kantian religion. — But this did violence to the historical character of the Biblical records; H.E.G. Paulus (d. 1851) apparently does justice to the historicity of the Bible, but removes from it all miracles by means of his "notiologico-philological" or "psychological" system of interpretation. He distinguishes between the fact or the occurrence to which the witnesses testify, and the judgment of the fact or the particular view which the witnesses took of the occurrence. In the New Testament, e.g., we have a record of the views of the Disciples concerning the events in Christ's life. — This explanation left too much of Christ's history and doctrine intact. Hence David F. Strauss (d. 1875) applied to the New Testament the system of Biblical mythicism, which Semler, Eichhorn, Vater, and de Wette had employed in their explanation of part of the Old Testament; about thirty years after its first appearance, Strauss's system was popularized by E. Renan. A great many Protestant commentators now began to grant the existence of myths in the Sacred Scriptures, though they might adhere to the general outlines of the Jewish and the Gospel history. The principles which are at least implicitly maintained by the mythicists, are the following: First, miracles and prophecies are impossible; secondly, our religious sources are not really historical; thirdly, the history and religion of all nations begin with myths, the Christian religion not excluded; fourthly, the Messianic idea of the New Testament was adopted from the Old, and all the traditional traits of the Messias were attributed to Jesus of Nazareth by a really myth-forming process. — But as it was hard to explain the growth of this whole Christian mythology within the narrow space of forty or fifty years, Ferd. Christ. Baur (d. 1860) reconstructed the origin of the Christian Church, making it a compromise between judaizing and universalistic Christians, or between the Petrine and the Pauline parties. Only Rom., I and II Cor., Gal. are authentic; the other books of the New Testament were written during or after the amalgamation of the two parties, which occurred in the second century. The adherents of this opinion form the New Tübingen or the Critical School. — It is true that Baur's theory of the late origin of the New Testament has been abandoned by the great majority of Protestant commentators who have ranked themselves among the followers of Harnack; but the opinion that the Sacred Books of the New Testament lack historicity in its true sense, is more common than ever.

In the light of this fact, we have to distinguish between the various classes of exegetical works in order to give a true estimate of the value possessed by the numberless recent Protestant contributions to Biblical literature: their philological and historical studies are, as a general rule, of great assistance to the commentator; the same must be said of their work done in textual criticism; but their commentaries are not sound enough to elicit commendation. Some of them adhere professedly to the principles of the most advanced criticism; others belong to the ranks of the conservatives; others again are more concerned with grammatical and philological than theological questions; others, finally, try to do the impossible by combining the conservative with the advanced critical principles.

When we are asked what attitude the Catholic reader ought to maintain with regard to these numerous Protestant commentaries, we answer in the words of Leo XIII, found in the Encyclical "Providentissimus Deus": "Though the studies of non-Catholics, used with prudence, may sometimes be of use to the Catholic student, he should, nevertheless, bear well in mind — as the Fathers also teach in numerous passages — that the sense of Holy Scripture can nowhere be found incorrupt outside of the Church, and cannot be expected to be found in writers who, being without the true faith, only gnaw the bark of the Sacred Scripture, and never attain its pith."

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Bæticus, Gregory

Bishop of Elvira, in the province of Baetica, Spain, from which he derived his surname; d. ...

Bæumer, Suitbert

Historian of the Breviary and one of the most scholarly patrologists of the nineteenth ...

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Bébian, Roch-Amboise-Auguste

Born 4 August, 1789 at Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe ; died there 24 February, 1839. His ...

Bédard, Pierre

French-Canadian lawyer and member of the Assembly of Lower Canada, b. at Charlesbourg near ...

Bénard, Laurent

Chief founder of the Maurist Congregation of the Benedictine Order , b. at Nevers, 1573; d. ...

Bérault-Bercastel, Antoine Henri de

A writer of church history, b. 22 November, 1720, at Briey, Lorraine ; d. about 1794 at Noyon, ...

Bérenger, Pierre

(Peter of Poitiers, Petrus Scholasticus). A French writer who flourished about the middle of the ...

Bérulle, Pierre de

Cardinal, and founder of the French congregation of the Oratory, born in the province of ...

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Böcken, Placidus

(B ÖCKHN ). A German Benedictine, canonist, and Vice-Chancellor of the University of ...

Börglum, Ancient See of

(BURGLANUM, BURGLANENSIS.) The ancient See of Börglum, in Denmark, embraced the ancient ...

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Ba 253

Bañez, Domingo

(Originally and more properly VAÑEZ and sometimes, but erroneously, IBAÑEZ). A ...

Baader, Franz Xaver von

German philosopher, born at Munich, 1765; died at the same place, 23 May, 1841. I. The ...

Baal, Baalim

( Hebrew Bá'ál; plural, Be`alîm.) A word which belongs to the oldest ...

Baalbek

The Heliopolis of the Greek and Latin writers, a Syrian town located now in present-day Lebanon ...

Babel

Babel occurs in the Vulgate only in Genesis 11:9 ; the form Babylonia is found in Baruch ...

Babel, Tower of

The "Tower of Babel" is the name of the building mentioned in Genesis 11:19 . History of the ...

Babenstuber, Ludwig

A German philosopher and theologian ; vice-chancellor of the University of Salzburg ; born ...

Babinet, Jacques

French physicist, born at Lusignan, Vienne, 5 March, 1794; died at Paris, 21 October, 1872. He ...

Babylas, Saint

Bishop and Martyr. He was the successor of Zebinus as Bishop of Antioch in the reign of the ...

Babylon (Title)

The curial title of a Latin archbishopric, also of a Chaldean patriarchate and of a Syrian ...

Babylonia

In treating of the history, character, and influence of this ancient empire, it is difficult not ...

Baccanceld

(BAPCHILD, near Sittingbourne, Kent), Synod Of (694). This meeting was rather a witenagemot , ...

Bacchus and Sergius

Martyrs, d. in the Diocletian persecution in Coele-Syria about 303. Their martyrdom is well ...

Bacchylus

Bishop of Corinth, whom Eusebius mentions among the prominent second-century churchmen (H. ...

Bachelor of Arts

A degree marking the completion of the traditional curriculum of the college. In the medieval ...

Bachelot, Alexis John Augustine

Prefect Apostolic of the Sandwich Islands, b. at Grand Beauchet, commune of St. Cyr (Orne), ...

Bachiarius

An early fifth-century writer, known only through two treatises which warrant the conjecture that ...

Bachmann, Paul

(Amincola). Catholic theological controversialist, born at Chemnitz, Saxony, about 1466. His ...

Backer, Augustin de

Bibliographer, born at Antwerp, Belgium , 18 July, 1809; died at Liège, 1 December, 1873. ...

Backx, Peter Hubert Evermode

Born 10 December, 1805, at Tilburg, Holland ; died 28 October, 1868. Ordained priest 17 March, ...

Bacon, David William

First bishop of Portland, Maine, U.S.A. born in New York, 5 November, 1813. He made his ...

Bacon, John

(Johannes Anglicus, Johannes De Baconthorpe). An English Carmelite and theologian, born ...

Bacon, Nathaniel

Better know under the assumed name of Southwell, a Jesuit priest and bibliographer, b. in the ...

Bacon, Roger

Philosopher, surnamed D OCTOR M IRABILIS , b. at Ilchester, Somersetshire, about 1214; d. at ...

Baconian System of Philosophy, The

This system takes its name from its founder, Francis Bacon, Lord Verulam, Viscount St. Albans, ...

Badajoz

(Pacensis.) The Latin name Pax , or Civitas Pacensis , was given to this district ...

Baden

The Grand Duchy of Baden is situated in the southwestern part of the German Empire, bounded by ...

Badia, Tommaso

Cardinal, author, papal legate, born at Modena, 1483; died at Rome, 6 September, 1547. He ...

Badin, Stephen Theodore

The first Catholic priest ordained within the limits of the original thirteen States of the ...

Badius, Raphael

A Florentine Dominican of the seventeenth century. He was deeply versed in Tuscan and ...

Baegert, John Jacob

Missionary and ethnographer, born at Schlettstadt in Alsace, 23 December, 1717; died at ...

Baert, François

Bollandist, born at Ypres, 25 August, 1651; died at Antwerp, 27 October, 1719. He entered the ...

Bagamoyo

Vicariate apostolic in German East Africa, separated by a pontifical Decree of 11 May, 1906, ...

Bagdad

This city was founded on the Tigris by the second Abbaside Caliph Abou Giafar al Mansur (762 or ...

Bageis

A titular see of Lydia in Asia Minor. This name is found on coins, but becomes Bagis in the ...

Baglioni, Giovanni, Cavaliere

Known as the "Deaf Man of the Barozzo", a painter of distinction, b. in Rome, 1571; d. there ...

Bagnorea

(Anciently NOVEMPAGI, BALNEUM REGIUM). A diocese situated in the district of Viterbo, ...

Bagot, Jean

Theologian, born at Rennes, in France, 9 July, 1591, died at Paris, 23 August, 1664. He entered ...

Bagshaw, Christopher

Convert, priest, prisoner for the Faith, and a prominent figure in the controversies between ...

Bahama Islands, The

(Or L UCAYOS ) The most northerly group of the West Indies, are a chain of coral islands ...

Bailey, Thomas

Controversialist, died c. 1657. He was son of Bishop Bailey of Bangor and was educated as an ...

Baillargeon, Charles François

A French-Canadian bishop, b. 26 April, 1798, at Ile-aux-Grues, P. Q.; d. 13 October, 1870. He ...

Baillet, Adrien

French author, b. 1649 at Neuville en Hez, near Beauvais, France ; d. at Paris, 1706. His ...

Bailloquet, Pierre

Missionary among the Indians of Canada, b. 1612, at Saintes, France ; d. in the Ottawa missions, ...

Baily, Thomas

A Catholic clergyman, b. in Yorkshire, England ; d. at Douai, France, 7 October, 1591. He was a ...

Bainbridge, Christopher

Archbishop of York, and Cardinal, b. at Hilton, near Appleby, in Westmoreland, probably 1464; ...

Baines, Peter Augustine

Titular Bishop of Siga, one of the most striking figures among English Catholics at the period ...

Baines, Ralph

Bishop of Lichfield and Coventry, England, b. at Knowsthorp, Yorks, date of birth uncertain; ...

Baini, Abbate Giuseppe

Born in Rome, 21 October, 1775; died there 21 May, 1844. Baini made his first musical studies ...

Baithen of Iona, Saint

An Irish monk, specially selected by St. Columba as one of the band of missionaries who set sail ...

Baius, Michel

(Or M ICHEL DE B AY ) Theologian and author of a system known as Baianism, was b. at ...

Bakócz, Thomas

Cardinal and statesman, b. about 1442, in the village of Erdoed, county Szatmár, ...

Baker, David Augustine

A well-known Benedictine mystic and an ascetic writer, born at Abergavenny, England, 9 ...

Baker, Diocese of

Comprises Wasco, Klamath, Lake, Sherman, Gilliam, Wheeler, Morrow, Grant, Union, Crook, Umatilla, ...

Baker, Francis Asbury

Priest of the Congregation of St. Paul the Apostle, born Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A. 30 March, ...

Baker, Venerable Charles

( Recté , according to his own entry in the English College David Henry Lewis). An ...

Balaam

The derivation of the name is uncertain. Dr. Neubauer would connect it with the god Ammo or Ammi, ...

Balanaea

A titular see of Syria. The city of this name, a colony of Aradus (Strabo, XVI, 753), is placed ...

Balbina, Saint

Memorials of a St. Balbina are to be found at Rome in three different spots which are connected ...

Balbinus, Boleslaus

A Jesuit historian of Bohemia, born 4 December 1621, at Königgrätz, of an ancient ...

Balboa, Vasco Nuñez de

Discoverer of the Pacific Ocean from the west coast of Central America, born in Spain, 1475, ...

Balbuena, Bernardo de

A Spanish poet, born in Val de Peñas, 1568; died in Porto Rico , 1627. At an early age ...

Balbus, Hieronymus

(Accellini). Humanist, poet, diplomatist, and Bishop of Gurk in Carinthia, b. about 1450 at ...

Baldachium of the Altar

A dome-like canopy in wood, stone, or metal, erected over the high altar of larger churches, ...

Balde, Jacob

A German poet, b. 4 January, 1604, in the Imperial free town of Ensisheim in Upper Alsace; d. at ...

Balderic

(Or Baudry). Bishop of Dol, in France, chronicler, b. about 1050; d. 7 January, 1130. After a ...

Balderic (Baudry)

A monk of Liège, a writer and teacher of the twelfth century, b. date unknown, at ...

Baldi, Bernardino

An Italian poet and savant, b. at Urbino, 5 June, 1553; d. at the same place, 10 October, ...

Baldinucci, Blessed Anthony

Born 19 June, 1665, at Florence, died 6 November, 1717. He entered the Society of Jesus 21 ...

Baldovinetti, Alesso

A notable Florentine painter, b. in Florence, 14 October, 1427; d. there, 29 August, 1499. His ...

Baldred, Saint

(1) a Celtic Bishop of Strathclyde, b. about 643; d. at Aldhame, Haddingtonshire, about 607. He ...

Baldung, Hans

Known as Grien or Grun, from his fondness for brilliant green, both in his own costume and in his ...

Baldwin

Archbishop of Trier and Elector of the Holy Roman Empire, born 1285; died 1354; he belonged to ...

Baldwin of Canterbury

Thirty-ninth Archbishop, a native of Exeter, date of birth unknown; d. 19 Nov., 1190. He was ...

Baldwin, Francis

(Also Baudoin). A celebrated jurist, b. 1 January, 1520 at Arras, then part of the German ...

Balearic Isles

A group in the western part of the Mediterranean belonging to Spain and consisting of four larger ...

Bales, Christopher, Venerable

(Or Bayles, alias Evers) Priest and martyr, b. at Coniscliffe near Darlington, County ...

Ball, Mother Frances Mary Teresa

Born in Dublin 9 January, 1794; died 19 May, 1861; foundress of the Irish Branch of the ...

Ballarat

One of the three suffragan dioceses of the ecclesiastical province of Melbourne, Australia. It ...

Ballerini, Antonio

Born at Medicina, near Bologna, 10 October, 1805; died in Rome, 27 November, 1881. He entered the ...

Ballerini, Girolamo and Pietro

Celebrated theologians and canonists, the sons of a distinguished surgeon of Verona. A rare ...

Balme, Henry

(Or Balma; also called Hugh) A Franciscan theologian, born at Genera, date uncertain; d. 23 ...

Balmes, Jaime Luciano

Philosopher and publicist, b. at Vich, Spain, 28 August, 1810; d. there, 9 July, 1848. His ...

Balsam

Balsam is an oily, resinous, and odorous substance, which flows spontaneously or by incision from ...

Balsamon, Theodore

A canonist of the Greek Church, born in the second half of the twelfth century at Constantinople; ...

Baltasar

(Or, as found in the Septuagint Baltasár .) Baltasar is the Greek and Latin name for ...

Baltimore, Archdiocese of

The senior see of the United States of America , established as a diocese 6 April, 1789; as an ...

Baltimore, Plenary Councils of

While the ecclesiastical province of Baltimore comprised the whole territory of the American ...

Baltimore, Provincial Councils of

These councils have a unique importance for the Church in the United States inasmuch as the ...

Baltus, Jean François

Theologian, born at Metz, 8 June, 1667; died at Reims, 9 March, 1743. He entered the Society of ...

Balue, Jean

A French cardinal, b. probably c. 1421, in Poitou; d. 5 October, 1491, at Ripatransone (March ...

Baluze, Etienne

French scholar and historian, b. at Tulle, 24 December, 1630; d. in Paris, 28 July, 1718. His ...

Bamber, Ven. Edward

( Alias Reading). Priest and martyr, b. at the Moor, Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire; executed ...

Bamberg

The Archdiocese of Bamberg, in the kingdom of Bavaria, embraces almost the whole of the ...

Banaias

(Authorized Version Benaiah; Kenrick, Banaiah; Hebrew bnyhw, also bnyh, "Jehovah hath built ...

Bancel, Louis

Born at Valence, 1628; died at Avignon, 1685. When very young he entered the Dominican Order at ...

Bandello, Matteo

Born at Castelnuovo di Scrivia in Piedmont, Italy, in 1480; died Bishop of Agen, France, in ...

Banduri, Anselmo

Archaeologist and numismatologist, b. 1671 at Ragusa, off the coast of Dalmatia ; d. at Paris, ...

Bangor

(Bangorium, Bangoriensis) Diocese ; anciently known as Bangor Vawr, situated in Carnarvonshire ...

Bangor Abbey

The name of two famous monastic establishments in Ireland and England. (1) The Irish Abbey ...

Bangor, Antiphonary of

An ancient Latin manuscript, supposed to have been originally written at Bangor ( Ireland ). ...

Banim, John & Michael

John Banim Poet, dramatist, novelist, b. 3 April, 1798, at Kilkenny, Ireland ; d. 31 August, ...

Banjaluka

The Diocese of Banjaluka in Western Bosnia includes some of the most beautiful portions of the ...

Bankruptcy, Civil Aspect of

( See also MORAL ASPECT OF BANKRUPTCY .) Bankruptcy ( La banqueroute; earlier English ...

Bankruptcy, Moral Aspect of

( See also CIVIL ASPECT OF BANKRUPTCY .) Bankruptcy must be considered not only from the ...

Banns of Marriage

(Latin bannum , pl. bann-a,-i from an Old English verb, bannan , to summon). In ...

Bapst, John

Jesuit missionary and educator, b. at La Roche, Fribourg, Switzerland, 17 December, 1815; d. at ...

Baptism

One of the Seven Sacraments of the Christian Church ; frequently called the "first sacrament ...

Baptismal Font

A basin or vase, serving as a receptacle for baptismal water in which the candidate for baptism ...

Baptismal Vows

The name popularly given to the renunciations required of an adult candidate for baptism just ...

Baptista Mantuanus, Blessed

(Or SPAGNOLI). Carmelite and Renaissance poet, born at Mantua, 17 April, 1447, where he also ...

Baptista Varani, Blessed

(Varano). An ascetical writer, b. at Camerino, in the Camerino, belonged to an illustrious ...

Baptistery

The separate building in which the Sacrament of Baptism was once solemnly administered, or that ...

Baptistines

I. Hermits of St. John the Baptist. II. Missionaries of St. John the Baptist. III. Sisterhood of ...

Baptists

(Greek, baptizein , to baptize ). A Protestant denomination which exists chiefly in ...

Bar Hebræus

( Abu'l Faraj ). A Jacobite Syrian bishop, philosopher, poet, grammarian, physician, ...

Bar-Kepha, Moses

One of the most celebrated Jacobite bishops and writers of the ninth century, born at Balad, ...

Barac

( Hebrew Baraq , lightning) The deliverer of the Israelites from the power of the ...

Baradæus, Jacob

A Syrian Monophysite bishop, born in Tella, towards the end of the fifth or the beginning of the ...

Baraga, Frederic

First Bishop of Marquette, Michigan, U.S.A., b. 29 June, 1797, at Malavas, in the parish of ...

Barat, Madeleine-Sophie

Foundress of the Society of the Sacred Heart , born at Joigny, Burgundy, 12 December, 1779; died ...

Barat, Nicolas

A French Orientalist, born at Bourges during the first quarter of the seventeenth century; died ...

Barba, Alvaro Alonzo

A secular priest of whom Nicolas Antonio (Bibliotheca hispana nova, 1786) says "Baeticus ex ...

Barbalissos

A titular see of Mesopotamia. It was a city in Provincia Augusta Euphratensis , where the ...

Barbara, Saint

Virgin and Martyr. There is no reference to St. Barbara contained in the authentic early ...

Barbarigo, Giovanni Francesco

Italian Cardinal, nephew of Blessed Gregorio Barbarigo (1625-97), born in 1658 at Venice ; died ...

Barbastro

(Barbastrum and Civitas Barbastrensis) Suffragan diocese of the Spanish province of Huesca. ...

Barbelin, Felix-Joseph

Styled the "apostle of Philadelphia", b. at Luneville, Province of Alsace, France, 30 May, ...

Barber Family, The

Daniel Barber Daniel Barber, soldier of the Revolution, Episcopalian minister and convert, b. ...

Barbieri, Giovanni

Giovanni Barbieri, called from his squinting, "Il Guercino"; a famous painter of religious ...

Barbosa, Agostino

A noted canonist, b. at Guimaraens, Portugal, in 1589; consecrated in Rome, 22 March, 1649, ...

Barbosa-Machado, Ignacio

A Portuguese historian, born at Lisbon in 1686; died in 1734. He pursued his studies at the ...

Barbour, John

Scottish ecclesiastic and author of "The Bruce", a historical poem in the early Scottish or ...

Barbus, Paulus

Italian philosopher and theologian, b. at Soncino, Lombardy, and hence known also by the name ...

Barca

A titular see of Cyrenaica in Northern Africa. According to most archaeologists it was ...

Barcelona

(Barcino). See also UNIVERSITY OF BARCELONA. One of the suffragan dioceses of the ...

Barcelona, University of

See also BARCELONA. This was an outgrowth of the ecclesiastical schools founded in the ...

Barcena, Alonzo de

(Also Barzana). A native of Bacza in Andalusia, Spain, b. 1528; d. at Cuzco, Peru, 15 ...

Barclay, John

Author of the political novel "Argenis" and other Latin works in prose and verse, was b. 28 ...

Barclay, William

Scottish Jurist, b. 1546; d. at Angers, France, 3 July, 1608. He was of a good Aberdeenshire ...

Barco Centenera, Martin del

Born 1535, at Logroño, in the Diocese of Plasencia of Estremadura (Spain); died c. 1602. ...

Barcos, Martin de

French theologian of the Jansenist School, b. at Bayonne, 1600; d. at St. Cyran, 1678. He was a ...

Bard, Henry

(Baron Bromley and Viscount Bellamont) An English soldier and diplomat, b. 1604; d. 1660. He ...

Bardesanes and Bardesanites

( Bar-Daisan ) Syrian Gnostic or, more correctly, a Syrian poet, astrologist, and ...

Bari

An archdiocese situated in the province of the same name, in Apulia, Southern Italy. The city of ...

Barjesus

(Gr. Bariesous ). A false prophet found in the company of the Proconsul Sergius Paulus by ...

Barkworth, Ven. Mark

( Alias LAMBERT.) Priest and martyr, born about 1572 in Lincolnshire; executed at Tyburn 27 ...

Barlaam and Josaphat

The principal characters of a legend of Christian antiquity, which was a favourite subject of ...

Barletta, Gabriel

(Sometimes called Barlete, De Barolo, Barolus) Preacher, b., according to some, in the ...

Barlings, Abbey of

Located about six miles E.N.E. of Lincoln, England, founded in 1154 in honour of Our Lady by ...

Barlow, Ven. Edward Ambrose

( Alias R ADCLIFFE and B RERETON .) Priest and martyr, b. at Barlow Hall, 1585; d. 10 ...

Barlow, William Rudesind

Third son of Sir Alexander Barlow of Barlow Hall, near Manchester, England, and Mary Brereton ...

Barnabas of Terni

( Interamna ) Friar Minor and missionary, d. 1474 (or 1477). He belonged to the noble family ...

Barnabas, Saint

Barnabas (originally Joseph), styled an Apostle in Holy Scripture , and, like St. Paul, ranked ...

Barnabas, The Epistle of

Authorities for the Text and Editions There is a triple tradition of the Greek text of this ...

Barnabites

The popular name of a religious order which is canonically known by the title, given to it by ...

Baroccio, Federigo

Called Fiore d'Urbino, a distinguished painter and engraver, born at Urbino, 1528; died at the ...

Barocco Style

( French baroque ). A debased application to architecture of Renaissance features. The term ...

Baron, Bonaventura

A distinguished Irish Franciscan theologian, philosopher, and writer of Latin prose and verse, ...

Baron, Vincent

A Dominican theologian and preacher, b. at Martres, in the department of the Haute-Garonne, ...

Baronius, Venerable Cesare

Cardinal and ecclesiastical historian, born at Sora in the Kingdom of Naples, 30 August, 1538; ...

Barquisimeto

(De Barquisimeto) Diocese in Venezuela, South America. The city is the capital of the State ...

Barradas, Sebastião

A Portuguese exegete and preacher, born at Lisbon in 1543; died at Coimbra in 1615. In 1558 he ...

Barral, Louis-Mathias, Count de

Archbishop of Tours, France, born 26 April, 1746, at Grenoble ; died 7 June, 1816, at Paris. ...

Barrande, Joachim

French palæ ontologist, b. at Sangues (Haute-Loire), 11 August, 1799; d. at Frohsdorff, ...

Barrasa, Jacinto

( Or Barraza). Born at Lima, Peru, early in the seventeenth century; died there, 22 Nov., ...

Barre, Antoine-Lefebvre, Sieur de la

Tenth French Governor-General of Canada, b. at Paris in 1622; d. in 1690. De la Barre was made ...

Barreira, Balthasar

A Portuguese Jesuit missionary, born at Lisbon, 1531; died 1612, on the mission of Angola, ...

Barrientos, Lopez de

A Spanish Dominican bishop, patriot, and diplomat, b. at Medina del Campo, Kingdom of Leon ...

Barron, Edward

A missionary, born at Waterford, Ireland, 1801; died at Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A. 12 Sept., ...

Barros, João de

Historian, b. in Portugal, 1496; d. 20 October, 1570. Of his early youth little is known. In ...

Barrow, John

Priest, descended from a family of stanch Catholic yeomen, b. 13 May, 1735, at ...

Barrow, William, Venerable

( Alias Waring, alias Harcourt). An English Jesuit martyr, born in Lancashire, in 1609, ...

Barruel, Augustin

Controversialist and publicist, born at Villeneuve de Berg (Ardeche); 2 October, 1741; died at ...

Barry, John

Captain in the United States navy, b. at Tacumshane, County Wexford, Ireland, in 1745; d. at ...

Barry, John

Second Bishop of Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A.; b. 1799 in the parish of Oylegate, Co. Wexford, ...

Barry, Patrick

Horticulturist, b. near Belfast, Ireland, May, 1816; d. at Rochester, New York, U.S.A., 23 June, ...

Barry, Paul de

Born at Leucate in 1587; died at Avignon, 28 July, 1661. He was a member of the Society of ...

Barthélemy, Jean-Jacques

A celebrated French numismatologist and writer, b. at Cassis (Provence), 1716; d. in Paris, ...

Barthel, Johann Caspar

A German canonist, b. 10 June, 1697, at Kitzingen, Bavaria ; d. 8 April, 1771. He was the son of ...

Bartholi, Francesco della Rossa

Friar Minor and chronicler, died c. 1372. Little is known of his life save what may be gathered ...

Bartholomaeus Anglicus

Franciscan encyclopedist of the thirteenth century. An Englishman by birth he had been professor ...

Bartholomew

"APOSTLE OF ARMENIA." Also called Bartholomaeus Parvus (the Little), born at Bologna, year not ...

Bartholomew of Braga, Venerable

Born at Verdela, near Lisbon, May, 1514; died at Viana, 16 July, 1590. Bartholomew Fernandez, ...

Bartholomew of Braganca

Born about 1200; died 1 July, 1271. He made his studies at Padua, receiving there the habit of the ...

Bartholomew of Brescia

An Italian canonist, b. probably in the second half of the twelfth century at Brescia ; d. ...

Bartholomew of Edessa

Syrian apologist and polemical writers. The place of his birth is not known, it was probably ...

Bartholomew of Lucca

(Or de Fiadonibus, sometimes abbreviated Ptolomeo or Tolomeo) Historian, b. about 1227 at Lucca ...

Bartholomew of Pisa

Friar Minor and chronicler. The fact that there were two Friars Minor named Bartholomew living ...

Bartholomew of San Concordio

(Also of Pisa ) Canonist, and man of letters, b. at San Concordia, near Pisa about ...

Bartholomew's Day Massacre, Saint

This massacre of which Protestants were the victims occurred in Paris on 24 August, 1572 (the ...

Bartholomew, Saint

One of the Twelve Apostles, mentioned sixth in the three Gospel lists ( Matthew 10:3 ; Mark ...

Bartholomites

The name given to Armenian monks who sought refuge in Italy after the invasion of their country ...

Bartoli, Daniello

An historian and littérateur , born at Ferrara, 12 February, 1608; died in Rome, 12 ...

Bartolocci, Giulio

A Cistercian monk and learned Hebrew scholar, b. at Celleno in the old kingdom of Naples, 1 ...

Bartolommeo, Fra

An Italian painter and a member of the Dominican Order, b. in 1475 in the territory belonging ...

Bartolozzi, Francesco

An engraver, etcher, and painter, b. at Florence, 1727; d. at Lisbon, 1815. His father was a ...

Barton, Elizabeth

Born probably in 1506; executed at Tyburn, 20 April, 1534; called the "Nun of Kent." The career of ...

Baruch

( Hebrew Barûkh , blessed, Benedict; Septuagint Barouch ). The disciple of ...

Barzynski, Vincent

Born at Sulislawice, Sandomir, Russian Poland, 1838; d. at Chicago, 2 May, 1899. The son of ...

Bas-relief

A sculpture executed upon and attached to a flat surface. The usual impression produced by an ...

Basil of Amasea

(Basileus or Basilius) Bishop and Martyr. In St. Jerome's Latin version of the Chronicle of ...

Basil of Seleucia

Bishop and ecclesiastical writer, date of birth uncertain; d., probably, between 458 and 460; ...

Basil the Great, Saint

Bishop of Caesarea, and one of the most distinguished Doctors of the Church. Born probably 329; ...

Basil, Liturgy of Saint

Several Oriental liturgies, or at least several anaphoras, have been attributed to the great ...

Basil, Rule of Saint

I. Under the name of Basilians are included all the religious who follow the Rule of St. Basil. ...

Basilians

(Priests of the Community of St. Basil) During the French Revolution, Mgr. D'Aviau, the last ...

Basilica

( Stoa basilike , or basileios ). The term basilica can indicate either the ...

Basilides

The earliest of the Alexandrian Gnostics ; he was a native of Alexandria and flourished under ...

Basilides

Martyrs bearing the name of Basilides are mentioned in the old martyrologies on three different ...

Basilinopolis

A titular see of Asia Minor. Originally a small village in Bithynia Prima, it obtained the rank ...

Basilissa

Various female martyrs, attributed to different localities yet bearing the common name of ...

Basins, Ecclesiastical Use of

Basins were extensively used in the Jewish Ritual and were in early use in Christian churches ...

Basle, Council of

Convoked by Pope Martin V in 1431, closed at Lausanne in 1449. The position of the pope as the ...

Basle-Lugano

Basle-Lugano is the largest Catholic diocese of Switzerland. It is composed of the two Dioceses ...

Bassein

A town situated twenty-nine miles north of Bombay in British India, and now of much historic ...

Bassett, Joshua

Convert and controversialist, Master of Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, England, under James II, ...

Bassi, Matthew of

Founder and first Superior-General of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchins, the principal branch ...

Bassianus

Bishop of Ephesus (444-448). As a priest of Ephesus the charities of Bassianus so won the ...

Bastiat, Claude-Frédéric

A French economist, b. at Mugron, a small city in the Department of Landes, 29 June, 1801; d. at ...

Baston, Guillaume-André-Réné

A French theologian, b. at Rouen, 29 November, 1741; d. at Saint-Laurent, 26 September, 1825. He ...

Basutoland

(Prefecture Apostolic of Basutoland) Basutoland, a mountainous district of South Africa, is ...

Batavia

(Vicariate Apostolic of Batavia) When the Portuguese took possession of the island of Java, of ...

Bath Abbey

The first religious house in Bath was a monastery of nuns founded by King Osric, A.D. 676. This ...

Bath and Wells

B ADONIENSIS ET W ELLENSIS (Bath, Aquae Solis, Bathonia, Bathensis, Bathoniensis ; Wells, ...

Bathe, William

Writer on music and education, b. at Dublin, Ireland, 2 April, 1564; d. at Madrid, 17 June, ...

Bathilde, Saint

(Or BATILDE). Wife of Clovis II, King of France, time and place of birth unknown; d. ...

Bathurst

Diocese situated in New South Wales, Australia, in the ecclesiastical Province of Sydney, ...

Battaglini, Marco

A historian of the councils, b. at Rimini, Italy, 25 March, 1645; d. at Cesena, 19 September, ...

Batteux, Charles

Abbé and writer on philosophy and æsthetics, b. near Vouziers, France, 6 May, ...

Battista, Giovanni Giuda Giona

(His original name was Jehuda Jona Ben-Isaac). Born of Jewish parents at Safed in Galilee, ...

Battle Abbey

Founded by William the Conqueror on the site of the Battle of Senlae or Hastings (1066), nearly ...

Bauberger, Wilhelm

German physician, novelist, and poet, b. at Thannhausen in Swabian Bavaria, 3 March, 1809; d. at ...

Baudeau, Nicolas

Regular Canon and economist, b. at Amboise, France, 25 April, 1730; d. in 1792. He became a ...

Baudouin, Michel

Italian missionary, born in Quebec, Canada, 8 March, 1692, entered the Society of Jesus in ...

Baumgartner, Alexander

Poet and writer on the history of literature, b. at St. Gall, Switzerland, 27 June, 1841; d. at ...

Baumgartner, Gallus Jacob

A Swiss statesman, b. 18 October, 1797, at Altstätten, Switzerland ; d. 12 July, 1869, at ...

Baunard, Louis

Educator, b. at Bellgarde (Loiret), France, in 1828. He was one of the clergy of ...

Bauny, Etienne

Theologian, b. in 1564 at Mouzon, Ardennes, France ; d. 3 December, 1649, at Saint Pol de ...

Bausset, Louis-François de

A French cardinal, writers, and statesman, b. in 1748 at Pondichery, where his father held an ...

Bautain, Louis-Eugène-Marie

Philosopher and theologian, b. at Paris, 17 February, 1796; d. there, 15 October, 1867. After a ...

Bautista, Fray Juan

Born at Mexico, 1555; date of death unknown, but probably between 1606 and 1615. He joined the ...

Bavaria, The Kingdom of

I. POLITICAL CONSTITUTION, AREA, POPULATION The present Kingdom of Bavaria -- named after the ...

Bawden, William

(Or Baldwin). An English Jesuit, born at Cornwall, 1563; died at St.-Omer, 28 September, ...

Bayer, Adèle

( née Parmentier) Eldest daughter of Andrew Parmentier, b. in Belgium, 4 July, 1814, ...

Bayeu y Subias, Francisco

Born at Saragossa, 9 March, 1734; died Madrid, 4 August, 1795, a distinguished religious and ...

Bayeux

DIOCESE OF BAYEUX (B AJOCÆ ). Coextensive with the Department of Calvados; suffragan to ...

Bayley, James Roosevelt

First Bishop of Newark, New Jersey, U.S.A.; eighth Archbishop of Baltimore, Maryland ; b. ...

Baylon, Saint Pascal

Born at Torre-Hermosa, in the Kingdom of Aragon, 24 May, 1540, on the Feast of Pentecost, called ...

Bayma, Joseph

Jesuit mathematician and scientist, b. in Piedmont, Italy, 9 November, 1816; d. at Santa Clara, ...

Bayonne

(Lapurdum) The Diocese of Bayonne comprises the Department of Basses-Pyrenees. Reorganized in ...

Baysio, Guido de

(Baisio) An Italian canonist, b. about the middle of the thirteenth century of a noble ...

Bazin, John Stephen

Third Bishop of Vincennes (now the Diocese of Indianapolis ), b. at Duerne, near Lyons, ...

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Be 246

Beads, Use of, at Prayers

Beads variously strung together, according to the kind, order, and number of prayers in certain ...

Beards

Among the Jews, as among most Oriental peoples, the beard was especially cherished as a symbol of ...

Beardsley, Aubrey

English artist, born at Brighton, 1872; died at Mentone, France, 16 March, 1898. It has been ...

Beatific Vision

The immediate knowledge of God which the angelic spirits and the souls of the just enjoy in ...

Beatification and Canonization

HISTORY According to some writers the origin of beatification and canonization in the Catholic ...

Beatitudes, Mount of

This name is given to the place where Our Saviour delivered the "Sermon on the Mount", beginning ...

Beatitudes, The Eight

The solemn blessings ( beatitudines, benedictiones ) which mark the opening of the Sermon on ...

Beaton, David

(Or Bethune) Cardinal, Archbishop of St. Andrews, b. 1494; d. 29 May, 1546. He was of an ...

Beaton, James

(Or Bethune) A Scottish Archbishop ; b. c. 1473; d. at St. Andrews, 1539, was the sixth and ...

Beaton, James

(Or Bethune) Archbishop of Glasgow, b. 1517; d. 24 April, 1603; the son of James Beaton of ...

Beatrix

(Or B EATRICE ). The name Beatrix has been borne by a certain number of holy persons, but no ...

Beaufort, Lady Margaret

Countess of Richmond and Derby, b. 1443; d. 1509, daughter and heiress of John Beaufort, first ...

Beaulieu Abbey

( Abbatia quae vocitatur Bellus Locus ) Beaulieu Abbey was a Cistercian house in ...

Beaune, Renaud de

A French Bishop, b. in 1527, at Tours ; d. 1606 in Paris. Before entering the ecclesiastical ...

Beauregard, Jean-Nicolas

Celebrated French pulpit orator, born at Metz in Lorraine, 4 December, 1733; died at the ...

Beauregard, Pierre Gustave Toutant

Soldier, b. near New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.A. 28 May, 1818; d. there 20 February, 1893. He ...

Beauvais

(Bellovacum) A suffragan diocese of the archiepiscopal See of Reims. The Dioceses of ...

Beauvais, Gilles-François-de

Jesuit writer and preacher, born at Mans, France, 7 July, 1693; died probably at Paris about ...

Beauvais, Jean-Baptiste-Charles-Marie de

A French bishop, b. at Cherbourg, 17 October, 1731; d. at Paris, 4 April, 1790. The sermons he ...

Bec, Abbey of

The Benedictine Abbey of Bec, or Le Bec, in Normandy, was founded in the earlier part of the ...

Becan, Martin

(Verbreck, van der Breck). Controversialist, born at Hilvarenbeck, Brabant, Holland, 6 ...

Beccaria, Giovanni Battista

A physicist, born at Mondovì, 3 October, 1716; died at Turin, 27 May, 1781. At the age ...

Beccus, John

Patriarch of Constantinople in the second half of the thirteenth century, one of the few Greek ...

Beche, Blessed John

( Alias THOMAS MARSHALL). English Benedictine abbot and martyr ; date of birth unknown; ...

Beckedorff, George Philipp Ludolf von

Born at Hanover, 14 April, 1778; died at Grünhof, 27 February, 1858. He first studied ...

Becker, Thomas Andrew

Sixth Bishop of Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A. b. at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, 20 December, 1832; ...

Becket, Saint Thomas

Martyr, Archbishop of Canterbury, born at London, 21 December, 1118 (?); died at Canterbury, 29 ...

Beckx, Pierre-Jean

Twenty-second General of the Society of Jesus , born at Sichem, Belgium, 8 February, 1795; died ...

Becquerel, Antoine-César

French physicist, b. at Chatillon-sur-Loing (Loiret), 7 March, 1788; d. at Paris, 18 January, ...

Bede

(Or B EAD , whence Bedehouse, Bedesman, Bederoll). The old English word bede (Anglo-Saxon ...

Bede, The Venerable

Historian and Doctor of the Church , born 672 or 673; died 735. In the last chapter of his great ...

Bedford, Gunning S.

Medical writer and teacher, b. at Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A. of a distinguished family in ...

Bedford, Henry

Writer, educator, b. in London 1 October, 1816; d. in Dublin, Ireland, 21 May, 1903. With the ...

Bedingfeld, Frances

( alias Long) Superioress of the English Institute of Mary , b. 1616 of a gentle family ...

Bedingfeld, Henry, Sir

Knight; b. 1509; d. 1583. He was the grandson of Sir Edmund Bedingfeld who had served in the Wars ...

Bedini, Cajetan

Italian Cardinal and diplomat; born at Sinigaglia, Italy, 15 May, 1806; died at Viterbo, 6 ...

Bedlam

(An English abbreviation of BETHLEHEM). A London hospital originally intended for the poor ...

Beelen, Ian Theodor

Exegete and Orientalist, b. at Amsterdam, 12 January 1807; d. at Louvain, 31 March 1884. After a ...

Beelphegor

( Or BAALPEOR.) Beelphegor was the baal of Mt. Phogor, or Peor, a mountain of Moab. ...

Beelzebub

1. Old Testament Beelzebub, or Baalzebûb, the Philistine god of Accaron (Ekron), ...

Beesley, George, Venerable

(Also spelled Bisley). Martyr, born at The Hill in Goosnargh parish, Lancaster, England, of an ...

Beethoven, Ludwig van

Born at Bonn, probably on 16 December, 1770; died at Vienna, 26 March, 1827. The date of his ...

Begnudelli-Basso, Francesco Antonio

A canonist who lived at the end of the seventeenth century; died at Freising, 9 October, 1713. ...

Beguines & Beghards

The etymology of the names Beghard and Beguine can only be conjectured. Most likely they are ...

Behaim, Albert von

(Known also as Albertus Bohemus) Born c. 1180, probably at Boheiming, in the Diocese of Passau ...

Behaim, Martin

(Martinus de Bohemia ) A German cartographer and navigator, b. at Nuremberg in 1459; d. at ...

Beirut

In Phoenicia, a titular Latin see, and the residential see of several prelates of Oriental ...

Beja

Diocese in Portugal, suffragan of Evora. It was created 10 June, 1770, and numbers 175,000 ...

Belasyse, John

B ARON B ELASYSE Born about 1614; died 1689, a loyal Catholic English nobleman, second son ...

Belchiam, Venerable Thomas

A Franciscan martyr in the reign of Henry VIII, date of birth uncertain; d. 3 August 1537. He ...

Belem do Pará, Archdiocese of

In South America, formerly (after 4 March, 1719) a suffragan diocese of Bahia (San Salvador), ...

Belfry

The upper part of the tower or steeple of a church, for the reception of the bells ; or a ...

Belgium

I. THE NAPOLEONIC ERA The victory of Fleurus, gained by the French army over the Austrian forces, ...

Belgrade and Smederevo

Titular (united) sees of Servia. The history of these sees is as confused as their present plight ...

Belgrado, Giacopo

Italian Jesuit and natural philosopher, born at Udine, 16 November, 1704; died in the same ...

Belial

Found frequently as a personal name in the Vulgate and various English translations of the ...

Belief

( be and lyian , to hold dear). That state of the mind by which it assents to ...

Belin, Albert (Jean)

French prelate and writer, b. in Besançon early in the seventeenth century; d. 29 April, ...

Bell, Altar

A small bell placed on the credence or in some other convenient place on the epistle side ...

Bell, Angelus

The triple Hail Mary recited in the evening, which is the origin of our modern Angelus, was ...

Bell, Arthur, Venerable

( alias F RANCIS ) Friar Minor and English martyr, b. at Temple-Broughton near Worcester, 13 ...

Bell, James

Priest and martyr, b. at Warrington in Lancashire, England, probably about 1520; d. 20 April, ...

Bellamy, Jerome

Jerome Bellamy of Uxenden Hall, near London, England, d. 1586, a member of an old Catholic family ...

Bellarini, John

Barnabite theologian, b. at Castelnuovo, Italy, in 1552; d. at Milan, 27 August, 1630. He was ...

Bellarmine, St. Robert

(Also, "Bellarmino"). A distinguished Jesuit theologian, writer, and cardinal, born at ...

Bellasius, Edward

Serjeant-at-Law, b. 14 October, 1800; d. 24 January, 1873; was one of the most able and respected ...

Bellecius, Aloysius

Jesuit ascetic author, born at Freiburg im Breisgau, 15 February, 1704; died at Augsburg, 27 ...

Bellenden, John

(Ballenden, or Ballantyne) A Scotch poet, b. at Haddington or Berwick in the latter part of ...

Belleville

The Diocese of Belleville comprises that part of southern Illinois, U.S.A. which lies south of ...

Belley

Diocese of Belley (Bellicium) Coextensive with the civil department of Ain and a suffragan of ...

Bellings, Sir Richard

(Or Belling) Irish historian, b. near Dublin early in the seventeenth century; d. in 1677. He ...

Bellini

Giacomo (Jacopo) Bellini Father of Gentile and Giovanni Bellini, b. about 1400; d. 1471. ...

Belloy, Jean-Baptiste de

Cardinal - Archbishop of Paris, b. 9 October, 1709, at Morangles in the Diocese of Beauvais ; ...

Bells

The subject will be treated under the following heads: I. Origin; II. Benediction; III. Uses; IV. ...

Belluno-Feltre

(Diocese of Belluno-Feltre). Belluno, which was anciently called Bellunum, the metropolis of ...

Belmont, François Vachon de

Fifth superior of the Sulpicians at Montreal, b. at Grenoble, France, 1645; d. 1732. He went ...

Belshazzar

(Or, as found in the Septuagint Baltasár .) Baltasar is the Greek and Latin name for ...

Belson, Venerable Thomas

Martyr, b. at Brill in Oxfordshire, England, dated uncertain; d. 5 July 1589. He was at the ...

Belsunce de Castelmoron, Henri François Xavier de

Bishop of Marseilles, b. 1671 at the Château de la Force, in Périgord; d. 1755 at ...

Belzoni, Giambattista

An Egyptian explorer, b. at Padua, Italy, in 1778; d. Gato, Africa, 3 Dec., 1823. His father ...

Bembo, Pietro

A famous Italian scholar and Cardinal, b. of a noble family at Venice, 20 May, 1470; d. at ...

Benadir

Prefecture Apostolic in Africa ; lies between 8° and 12° N. lat., and between 42° ...

Benavides, Fray Alonzo

(Benavidez) Archbishop of Goa in the Portuguese Indies. Although a prelate of high rank, the ...

Bench, Communion

An adaptation of the sanctuary guard or altar-rail. Standing in front of this barrier, in a ...

Benda

A titular see of Albania. Its history is closely connected with that of the Sees of Narenta and ...

Benedict Biscop, Saint

An English monastic founder, born of a noble Anglo-Saxon family, c. 628; died 12 January 690. ...

Benedict I, Pope

Of the first Pontiff who bore the name of Benedict practically nothing is known. The date of his ...

Benedict II, Saint, Pope

Date of birth unknown; died 8 May, 685; was a Roman, and the son of John. Sent when young to the ...

Benedict III, Pope

Date of birth unknown; d. 17 April, 858. The election of the learned and ascetic Roman, Benedict, ...

Benedict IV, Pope

Date of birth unknown; died in the summer of 903. The Popes Benedict from the fourth to the ...

Benedict IX, Pope

The nephew of his two immediate predecessors, Benedict IX was a man of very different character ...

Benedict Joseph Labre, Saint

Born 26 March, 1748 at Amettes in the Diocese of Boulogne, France ; died in Rome 16 April, 1783. ...

Benedict Levita

Benedict Levita (of Mainz ), or Benedict the Deacon, is the name given to himself by the author ...

Benedict of Aniane, Saint

Born about 745-750; died at Cornelimünster, 11 February, 821. Benedict, originally known as ...

Benedict of Nursia, Saint

Founder of western monasticism, born at Nursia, c. 480; died at Monte Cassino , 543. The only ...

Benedict of Peterborough

Abbot and writer, place and date of birth unknown; d. 1193. He was educated at Oxford, and was ...

Benedict of San Philadelphio, Saint

(Or B ENEDICT THE M OOR ) Born at San Philadelphio or San Fradello, a village of the ...

Benedict V, Pope

Date of birth unknown; died 4 July, 965. Benedict V was elected pope (May, 964) in very ...

Benedict VI, Pope

Date of birth unknown; d. August, 974 (see Ricobaldi of Ferrara, Compil. Chron., in Rer. Ital. SS. ...

Benedict VII, Pope

Date of birth unknown; d. c. October, 983. Acting under the influence of Sicco (see BENEDICT VI ...

Benedict VIII, Pope

Date of birth unknown; d. 9 April, 1024. The first of the Tusculan popes, being the son of ...

Benedict X

The bearer of this name was an antipope in the days of Nicholas II, 1056-61.

Benedict XI, Pope

(Nicholas Boccasini) Born at Treviso, Italy, 1240; died at Perugia, 7 July, 1304. He entered ...

Benedict XII, Pope

(J ACQUES F OURNIER ) Third of the Avignon popes, b. at Saverdun in the province of ...

Benedict XIII, Pope

(PIETRO FRANCESCO ORSINI) Born 2 February, 1649; died 23 February, 1730. Being a son of ...

Benedict XIV, Pope

(P ROSPERO L ORENZO L AMBERTINI .) Son of Marcello Lambertini and Lucretia Bulgarini, b. ...

Benedict, Medal of

A medal, originally a cross, dedicated to the devotion in honour of St. Benedict. One ...

Benedict, Rule of Saint

This work holds the first place among monastic legislative codes, and was by far the most ...

Benedictbeurn, Abbey of

Situated in the Bavarian Alps, about thirty miles south of Munich. It was formerly in the ...

Benedicti, Jean

A Franciscan theologian of the sixteenth century belonging to the Observantine Province of ...

Benedictine Order

The Benedictine Order comprises monks living under the Rule of St. Benedict, and commonly known ...

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

One of the most generally popular of Catholic services is Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, ...

Benedictional

( Benedictionale ). A book containing a collection of benedictions or blessings in use in ...

Benedictus Polonus

A medieval Friar Minor missionary and traveller (c. 1245) companion of Giovanni da Piancarpino, ...

Benedictus, The

The Benedictus, given in Luke 1:68-79, is one of the three great canticles in the opening ...

Benefice

( Latin Beneficium , a benefit) Popularly the term benefice is often understood to denote ...

Benefit of Clergy

The exemption from the jurisdiction of the secular courts, which in England, in the Middle ...

Benettis, Jeremiah

Friar Minor Capuchin and historical writer, d. in 1774. He belonged to the Province of Piedmont ...

Benevento, Archdiocese of

(BENEVENTANA). Benevento, the ancient Beneventum, the principal city of the province of the ...

Bengtsson, Jöns Oxenstjerna

(JOANNES BENEDICTI). Archbishop of Upsala, Sweden, b. 1417; d. in 1467. He was a member of ...

Bengy, Anatole de

A martyr of the French Commune, b. at Bourges, 19 September, 1824; d. in Paris, 26 May, 1871. ...

Benignus of Dijon, Saint

Martyr honoured as the patron saint and first herald of Christianity of Dijon (Divio) an old ...

Benignus, Saint

Date of birth unknown; d. 467, son of Sesenen, an Irish chieftain in that part of Ireland which ...

Benin

(Vicariate Apostolic of the Coast of Benin. Also called Oræ Benini). Includes an ...

Benjamin

( Hebrew binjamin , "son of the right hand"). (1) The youngest son of Jacob born of ...

Benkert, Franz Georg

German theologian and historical writer, b. 25 September, 1790, at Nordheim, near the mountain ...

Benno II

Bishop of Osnabrück, b. at Luningen in Swabia; d. 27 July, 1088, in the Benedictine ...

Benoît, Michel

Born at Autun (or Dijon ), France, 8 October, 1715; died at Peking, 23 October, 1774, a ...

Benthamism

Jeremy Bentham an English jurist and reformer, born at Houndsditch, London, 15 February, 1748; ...

Bentivoglio, Family of

Originally from the castle of that name in the neighbourhood of Bologna, Italy. They claimed ...

Bentley, John Francis

English architect, b. at Doncaster, Yorkshire, in 1839; d. in London, February, 1902. From early ...

Bentney, William

( Alias Bennet). An English Jesuit priest born in Cheshire, 1609; died 30 October, 1692. He ...

Benziger, Joseph Charles

Founder of the Catholic publishing house that bears his name, b. at Einsiedeln, Switzerland, ...

Benzoni, Girolamo

Born at Milan about 1519. He went to America in 1541 and successively visited the Antilles and ...

Berach, Saint

Of Termonbarry, d. 595; a disciple of St. Kevin and a celebrated Irish saint, whose memory is ...

Berard of Carbio, Saint

(Or BERALDUS). Friar Minor and martyr ; d. 16 January, 1220. Of the noble family of ...

Berardi, Carbo Sebastiano

Canonist, b. at Oneglia, Italy, 26 August, 1719; d. 1768. Having studied theology at Savona ...

Bercharius, Saint

(BERERUS). Abbot of Hautvillers in Champagne, b. 636; d. 28 March, 696. Descended from a ...

Bercheure, Pierre

(BERCHOIRE, BERSUIRE). A learned French Benedictine, b. 1290 at St. Pierre du Chemin ...

Berchmans, Saint John

Born at Diest in Brabant, 13 March, 1599; died at Rome, 13 August, 1621. His parents watched ...

Berchtold, Blessed

(BERTHOLD). Abbot of the Benedictine Monastery of Engelberg in Switzerland ; date of ...

Berdini of Sarteano, Blessed Albert

Franciscan Friar and missionary, born at Sarteano, in Tuscany, 1385; died at Milan, 15 August, ...

Berengarius of Tours

Born at Tours about 999; died on the island of St. Cosme, near that city, in 1088. Having ...

Berenice

A titular see of Egypt which was situated at the end of Major Syrtis where Bengazi stands ...

Bergamo

(Diocese of Bergamo). The city, called by the ancients Bergonum, is capital of the province of ...

Bergen, Ancient See of

(BERGA, BERGENSIS.) The diocese included the Provinces of Nordre and Sondre Bergenhus, and ...

Bergier, Nicolas-Sylvestre

French theologian, b. 31 December, 1715 at Darney in Lorraine ; d. at Versailles, 9 April, 1790. ...

Berin, Saint

Confessor, first Bishop of Dorchester (in what is now the County of Oxford, not Dorchester, ...

Berington, Charles

Titular Bishop of Hiero-Caesarea, b. at Stock, Essex, England, 1748; d. 8 June, 1798. His life ...

Berington, Joseph

One of the best known Catholic writers of his day, b. at Winsley, in Herefordshire, 16 January, ...

Berisford, Humphrey

Confessor (c. 1588) of whom the only extant account occurs in the manuscript marked "F", ...

Berissa

(Berisa or Verissa) A titular see of Pontus Polemoniacus, in Asia Minor which Kiepert and ...

Beristain y Martin de Souza, José Mariano

Mexican bibliographer, b. in Puebla, Mexico, 22 May, 1756; d. at Mexico, 23 March, 1817. He went ...

Berlage, Anton

Dogmatic theologian, b. 21 December, 1805, at Münster, Westphalia ; d. there, 6 December, ...

Berland, Pierre

Archbishop of Bordeaux, b. 1375 in Médoc; d. 1457 at Bordeaux. Being of humble ...

Berlanga, Fray Tomás de

Bishop of Panama, b. at Berlanga in Spain, date uncertain; d. there 8 August, 1551. He was ...

Berlin

Capital of the German Empire and of the Kingdom of Prussia, and residence of the German ...

Berlioz, Hector

French composer, b. at La Côte Saint-André, near Grenoble, 11 December, 1803; d. at ...

Bernal, Agostino

Spanish theologian, born at Magallon in Aragon in 1587; died at Saragossa, 13 September, 1642. ...

Bernard Guidonis

Inquisitor of Toulouse against the Albigenses and Bishop of Lodève, b. at ...

Bernard of Besse

Friar Minor and chronicler, a native of Aquitaine, date of birth uncertain; he belonged to the ...

Bernard of Bologna

( Also Bernardine; Flovitano Toselli). Friar Minor Capuchin and Scotist theologian, born at ...

Bernard of Botone

Generally called Parmensis from his birthplace, Parma in Italy, a noted canonist of the ...

Bernard of Clairvaux, Saint

Born in 1090, at Fontaines, near Dijon, France ; died at Clairvaux, 21 August, 1153. His ...

Bernard of Cluny

Bernard of Cluny (or of Morlaix), a Benedictine monk of the first half of the twelfth century, ...

Bernard of Compostella

(1) Bernard of Compostella (Antiquus) A canonist of the early thirteenth century, a native of ...

Bernard of Luxemburg

Dominican theologian, controversialist, and Inquisitor of the Archdioceses of Cologne, Mainz, ...

Bernard of Menthon, Saint

Born in 923, probably in the castle Menthon near Annecy, in Savoy ; died at Novara, 1008. He ...

Bernard of Pavia

A noted canonist, provost of the cathedral chapter of Pavia, and, in 1190, promoted to the ...

Bernard Tolomeo, Saint

Founder of the congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto, born at Siena in Tuscany ...

Bernard, Alexis-Xyste

Bishop of St. Hyacinth, P.Q., Canada. b. at Beloeil, P.Q., 29 December, 1847. He made his ...

Bernard, Claude

A French ecclesiastic known as "the poor priest " ( le pauvre prêtre ), b. at Dijon 23 ...

Bernard, Claude

French physiologist, b. 12 July, 1813 at Saint Julien near Villefranche, France ; d. at Paris, ...

Bernard, Saint

(BARNARD.) Archbishop of Vienne, France. Born in 778; died at Vienne, 23 January, 842. His ...

Bernardine of Feltre, Blessed

Friar Minor and missionary, b. at Feltre, Italy, in 1439 and d. at Pavia, 28 September, 1494. He ...

Bernardine of Fossa, Blessed

Of the Order of Friars Minor, historian and ascetical writer, b. at Fossa, in the Diocese of ...

Bernardine of Siena, Saint

Friar Minor, missionary, and reformer, often called the "Apostle ofItaly ", b. of the noblefamily ...

Bernardines, The

Title of certain sisters of the order of Cîteaux who at the end of the sixteenth and in ...

Berne

The fourth city of Switzerland in population, capital of a canton of the same name which is the ...

Berni, Francesco

An Italian comic poet, b. at Lamporecchio (Florence) 1497 or 1498; d. at Florence, 26 May, ...

Bernier, Etienne-Alexandre

French Bishop, b. at Daon (Mayenne), 31 October, 1762; d. at Paris, 1 October, 1806. He was a ...

Bernini, Domenico

Son of the famous artist Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini , lived in the early part of the eighteenth ...

Bernini, Giovanni Lorenzo

One of the most vigorous and fertile of Italian architects and sculptors, b. at Naples in 1598; ...

Bernini, Giuseppe Maria

A Capuchin missionary and Orientalist, b. near Carignan in Piedmont ; d. in Hindustan in 1753. ...

Bernis, François-Joachim-Pierre de

A French cardinal and statesman, b. 1715 at Saint-Marcel-d'Ardèche; d. at Rome, 1794. ...

Berno

(Apostle of the Obotrites), in the latter half of the twelfth century. The Obotrites were one of ...

Berno (Abbot of Reichenau)

Famous as orator, poet, philosopher, and musician, born (date unknown) at Prüm near Trier ...

Bernold of Constance

Historian and theologian, b. in Swabia about 1054; d. at Schaffhausen, 16 September, 1100. He ...

Bernward, Saint

Thirteenth Bishop of Hildesheim, Germany, b. about the middle of the tenth century; d. 20 ...

Beroea

(Later, Berrhoea, Beroie, and Beroe ). A titular see of Macedonia, at the foot of Mount ...

Berosus

( Berosós or Berossós ) The name of a native historian of Babylonia and a ...

Beroth

(B EEROTH ) A city in Chanaan, one of the confederation of cities under the headship of ...

Berrettini, Pietro

(Called Pietro da Cortona) A distinguished Italian painter, architect, and writer, b. at ...

Berruguete, Alonso

For his mastery of the arts of painting, sculpture, and architecture, sometimes called the ...

Berruyer, Isaac-Joseph

Born at Roueb, 7 November, 1681; died at Paris, 18 February, 1758. He entered the Society of Jesus ...

Berryer, Pierre-Antoine

French advocate, orator, and statesman, son of Pierre-Nicolas Berryer, an advocate, b. at Paris, ...

Bersabee

( Bar sb‘ or Beersheba ) A town on the southern extremity of Palestine, one of the ...

Bertha

Of the various holy women bearing the name of Bertha, five are more particularly worthy of ...

Berthier, Guillaume-François

A Jesuit professor and writer, born at Issoudun, 1704; died at Bourges, 1782. He taught ...

Berthold

Bishop, Apostle of the Livonians, killed 24 July, 1198, in a crusade against the pagan ...

Berthold of Chiemsee

A German bishop and theological writer, b. 1465 at Salzburg, Austria ; d. 19 July, 1543, at ...

Berthold of Henneberg

Archbishop and Elector of Mainz, b. 1441; d. 21 December, 1504. Having completed his education ...

Berthold of Ratisbon

A Franciscan of the monastery of that city and the most powerful preacher of repentance in the ...

Berthold of Reichenau

A Benedictine monk and chronicler of the celebrated Abbey of Reichenau on the Lake of ...

Berti, Giovanni Lorenzo

An Italian theologian, b. 28 May, 1696, at Sarravezza, Tuscany ; d. 26 March, 1766, at Pisa. His ...

Bertin, Saint

Abbot of St. Omer, b. near Constance about 615; d. about 709. At an early age he entered the ...

Bertinoro

Bertinoro, anciently called Forum Truentinorum, and, at the time of the Gothic war, Petra ...

Bertonio, Ludovico

An Italian missionary, born 1552 at Rocca Contrada near Ancona ; died at Lima, Peru, 3 ...

Bertrand, Louis, Saint

Born at Valencia, Spain, 1 Jan., 1526; died 9 Oct., 1581. His patents were Juan Bertrand and ...

Bertrand, Pierre

(1) A French Cardinal, theologian, and canonist, b. 1280 at Annonay in Vivarais; d. 1348 or 1349 ...

Bertulf, Saint

Abbot of Bobbio, date of birth unknown; d. 639 or 640. He was the son of a pagan nobleman in ...

Bervanger, Martin de

A French priest, founder of charitable institutions ; b. at Sarrelouis, 15 May, 1795; d. at ...

Besançon

Archdiocese coextensive with the departments of Doubs, Haute-Saône, and the district of ...

Besange, Jerome Lamy, O.S.B

Born at Linz, 1726; died 1781. For twenty-four years he taught Scripture at Salzburg. He ...

Beschefer, Theodore

Jesuit missionary in Canada, born at Châlons-sur-marne, 25 May, 1630; died at Reims, 4 ...

Beschi, Costanzo Giuseppe

Born at Castiglione in the Venetian Republic, 1680; died at Manapar c. 1746. He entered the ...

Beseleel

(Beçál'el, in the shadow of God). I. The son of Uri and grandson of Hur of the ...

Besoigne, Jérôme

A Jansenist writer, b. at Paris, 1686; d. 1763. Ordained in 1715, he received the doctorate of ...

Besoldus, Christopher

A German jurist and publicist, b. of Protestant parents in 1577 at Tübingen, ...

Bessarion, Johannes

(Or B ASILIUS ). Cardinal ; b. at Trebizond, 1389, or according to others, 1395, but most ...

Bessel, Johann Franz

(In religion Gottfried ) Benedictine, abbot, and historian, b. 5 September, 1672, at ...

Beste, Henry Digby

Miscellaneous author, b. at Lincoln, England, 21 October, 1768; d. at Brighton, 28 May, 1836. He ...

Bestiaries

Medieval books on animals, in which the real or fabulous characteristics of actually existent or ...

Betanzos, Fray Domingo

A Dominican missionary, d. at Valladolid, Sept., 1549. One of the most illustrious Dominicans ...

Betanzos, Fray Pedro de

A Franciscan missionary, b. at Betanzos in Galicia; d. at Chomez, Nicaragua, 1570. He was one ...

Betanzos, Juan de

Unfortunately very little is known as yet of this official, who has left such valuable works on ...

Bethany

( Bethania ). A village of Palestine, fifteen furlongs, or one mile and three-quarters, east ...

Bethany Beyond the Jordan

( Bethania peran tou Iordanou ). In the text of St. John's Gospel, i, 28, the author locates ...

Betharan

A city of the Amorrhites in the valley-plain east of the Jordan, about twelve miles from ...

Bethdagon

Name of two cities in Palestine. (1) A city ( Joshua 15:41 ) of the tribe of Juda "in the plains", ...

Bethel

( Hebrew word meaning "house of God "). An ancient Cansanitish town, twelve miles north of ...

Bethlehem

A titular see of Palestine. The early name of the city was Ephrata; afterwards Bethlehem, "House ...

Bethlehem

The old Hebrew name bêth lehem , meaning "house of bread", has survived till the present ...

Bethlehem

An architectural term used in the Ethiopic Church for the oven or bakehouse for baking the ...

Bethlehemites

MILITARY ORDERS There were two military orders dedicated to Our Lady of Bethlehem and known ...

Bethsaida

Bethsaida is: a city, or perhaps two cities, on the shore of the Lake of Genesareth, the ...

Bethsan

( Hebrew Beth Shean , or Beth Shan , "place of rest"). A city within Issachar, but assigned to ...

Bethulia

(Greek Betuloua ). The city whose deliverance by Judith, when besieged by Holofernes, forms ...

Betrothal

( Latin sponsalia ). The giving of one's troth — that is, one's true faith or promise. ...

Bettiah

Prefecture Apostolic in northern India, includes as part of its jurisdiction the entire native ...

Betting

A bet may be defined as the backing of an affirmation or forecast by offering to forfeit, in ...

Beugnot, Auguste-Arthur, Count

French historian and statesman, b. at Bar-sur-Aube, 25 March, 1797; d. at Paris, 15 March, 1865. ...

Beuno, Saint

Abbot of Clynnog, d. 660(?), was, according to the "Bucced Beuno", born in Powis-land and, after ...

Beverley Minster

A collegiate church at Beverley, capital of the East Riding of Yorkshire, served by a chapter ...

Beyerlinck, Lawrence

Belgian theologian and ecclesiastical writer, b. at Antwerp, April, 1578; d. at the same place, ...

Bezae, Codex

(CODEX CANTABRIGIENSIS), one of the five most important Greek New Testament manuscripts, and the ...

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Bi 63

Bianchi, Giovanni Antonio

Friar Minor andtheologian, b. at Lucca, 2 October, 1686; d. at Rome, 18 January, 1768. At the age ...

Bianchini, Francesco

A student of the natural sciences, and an historian, b. at Verona, Northern Italy, 13 December, ...

Bianchini, Giuseppe

(Giuseppe Blanchini). Italian Oratorian, Biblical, historical, and liturgical scholar, b. ...

Bianconi, Charles

Merchant and philanthropist, b. 26 September, 1785, in the duchy of Milan ; d. near Clonmel, ...

Biard, Pierre

Jesuit missionary, born at Grenoble, France, 1576; died at Avignon, 17 November, 1622. In 1608 ...

Bibbiena

(Bernardo Dovizi) An Italian Cardinal and comedy-writer, known best by the name of the town ...

Bibiana, Saint

The earliest mention in an authentic historical authority of St. Bibiana (Vibiana), a Roman ...

Bible Societies

Protestant Bible Societies, established for the purpose of publishing and propagating the Bible ...

Bible, Authenticity of the

The authenticity or authority of Holy Writ is twofold on account of its twofold authorship. ...

Bible, Coptic Versions of the

DIALECTS The Coptic language is now recognized in four principal dialects, Bohairic (formerly ...

Bible, Editions of the

In the present article we understand by editions of the Bible the printed reproductions of its ...

Bible, Inspiration of the

The subject will be treated in this article under the four heads: I. Belief in Inspired books; ...

Bible, Manuscripts of the

Manuscripts are written, as opposed to printed, copies of the original text or of a version ...

Bible, The

A collection of writings which the Church of God has solemnly recognized as inspired. The ...

Bible, Versions of the

Synopsis GREEK : Septuagint; Aquila; Theodotion; Symmachus; other versions. VERSIONS FROM THE ...

Bibles, Picture

In the Middle Ages the Church made use of pictures as a means of instruction, to supplement ...

Bibles, Rhymed

The rhymed versions of the Bible are almost entirely collections of the psalms. The oldest ...

Biblia Pauperum

(BIBLE OF THE POOR). A collection of pictures representing scenes from Our Lord's life with ...

Biblical Accommodation

We shall consider (1) what is meant by biblical accommodation; (2) its use in Sacred Scripture; ...

Biblical Antiquities

This department of archæology has been variously defined and classified. Some scholars have ...

Biblical Commission, The

A committee of cardinals at Rome who, with the assistance of consultors, have to secure the ...

Biblical Introduction

A technical name which is usually applied to two distinct, but intimately connected, things. ...

Bickell, Gustav

Orientalist, b. at Cassel, 7 July, 1838; d. at Vienna, 15 Jan., 1906. His father, Johann Wilhelm ...

Bickerdike, Robert, Venerable

Martyr, a Yorkshire layman, b. at Low Hall, near Knaresborough (date unknown), but residing at ...

Bicknor, Alexander

Archbishop of Dublin, date of birth unknown; d. 1349. As his surname suggests he came from a ...

Bidermann, James

A poet and theologian of great learning and sanctity, b. at Ebingen, Germany, in 1578; d. at ...

Biel, Gabriel

Called "the last of the Scholastics ", b. at Speyer, Germany, c. 1425; d. at Tübingen, ...

Biella

The city of Biella, the see of the diocese of that name, is an important industrial centre ...

Bielski, Marcin

(Or Wolski) A Polish chronicler, b. of noble parentage on the patrimonial estate of Biala ...

Bienville, Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de

French Governor of Louisiana and founder of New Orleans, b. in Montreal, Canada, 24 February, ...

Bigamy (in Canon Law)

According to the strict meaning, the word should signify the marrying of a second after the death ...

Bigamy (in Civil Law)

( French bigamie , from Latin bis , twice, and Greek gamos , marriage) Bigamy, in civil ...

Bigne, Marguerin de la

(Binius, Bignaeus) French theologian and patrologist, b. about 1546 at ...

Billart, Saint Julie

( Also Julia). Foundress, and first superior-general of the Congregation of the Sisters of ...

Billick, Eberhard

( Also Steinberger, Latin Latomus, Lapicida ). German theologian, opponent of the ...

Billy, Jacques de

(Billi) A French patristic scholar, theologian, jurist, linguist, and a Benedictine abbot, ...

Bilocation

(Latin bis , twice, and locatio , place.) I. The question whether the same finite being ...

Bination

The offering up of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass twice on the same day by the same celebrant. ...

Biner, Joseph

Canonist, historian, and theologian, b. at Gluringen, Switzerland, 1697; d. at Torrenburg, ...

Binet, Etienne

Jesuit author, born at Dijon, France, 1569; died at Paris, 1639. He entered the Society of ...

Binet, Jacques-Philippe-Marie

French mathematician and astronomer, b. at Rennes, in Brittany, 2 February, 1786; d. in Paris, ...

Binius, Severin

Historian and critic, b. in 1573 in the village of Randerath, Western Germany ; d. 14 February, ...

Binterim, Anton Joseph

Born at Düsseldorf, 19 September, 1779; died at Bilk, 17 May, 1855, a theologian of repute ...

Biogenesis and Abiogenesis

According to their Greek derivation these two terms refer to the origin of life. Biogenesis is ...

Biology

(From bios , life and logos , reason, account, reasoning) Biology may be defined as the ...

Biondo, Flavio

A distinguished Italian arch æologist and historian, b. at Forli in 1388; d. at Rome in ...

Biot, Jean-Baptiste

A physicist and mathematician, born at Paris, France, 21 April, 1774; died. there, 3 ...

Birds (in Symbolism)

Many kinds of birds are used in Christian symbolism. The first to be so employed was the Dove ...

Biretta

A square cap with three ridges or peaks on its upper surface, worn by clerics of all grades from ...

Birinus, Saint

Confessor, first Bishop of Dorchester (in what is now the County of Oxford, not Dorchester, ...

Birkowski, Fabian

Polish preacher, b. at Lemberg, 1566; d. at Cracow, 1636. He completed his studies at the ...

Birmingham

(BIRMINGHAMIA, BIRMINGHAMIENSIS) One of the thirteen dioceses erected by the Apostolic ...

Birnbaum, Heinrich

(Also known as DE PIRO, the latinized form of this German name) A pious and learned ...

Birth, The Defect of

(ILLEGITIMACY) A canonical impediment to ordination. When used in this connection, the word ...

Birtha

A titular see of Osrhaene, probably identical with Birejik (Zegma) on the left bank of the ...

Bisarchio, Diocese of

Situated in Sardinia, in the province of Sassari, district of Nuoro, and suffragan to the ...

Biscop, Saint Benedict

An English monastic founder, born of a noble Anglo-Saxon family, c. 628; died 12 January 690. ...

Bishop

(Anglo-Saxon Biscop, Busceop , German Bischof ; from the Greek episkopos , an overseer, ...

Bishop's Crook

(Or PASTORAL STAFF). The crosier is an ecclesiastical ornament which is conferred on bishops ...

Bishop, Auxiliary

A bishop deputed to a diocesan who, capable of governing and administering his diocese, is ...

Bishop, William

The first superior in England in episcopal orders since the old hierarchy died out in the ...

Bismarck, Diocese of

(BISMARCKIENSIS). In North Dakota, this diocese was erected on 31 December, 1909, and is ...

Bisomus

A tomb large enough to contain two bodies. The ordinary tombs ( loci ) in the galleries of ...

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Bl 34

Black Fast, The

This form of fasting, the most rigorous in the history of church legislation, was marked by ...

Blackburne, Robert

An English Catholic who suffered imprisonment in the closing years of the seventeenth, and ...

Blackfoot Indians

An important tribe of the Northern Plains, constituting the westernmost extension of the great ...

Blackwood, Adam

Author, b. at Dunfermline, Scotland, 1539; d. 1613. He was a great-nephew of Robert Reid, Bishop ...

Blaise, Saint

Bishop and martyr. The ninth-century martyrologies of Europe in their lists, which are ...

Blanc, Anthony

Fifth Bishop, and first Archbishop, of New Orleans, La., U.S.A. b. at Sury, near Lyons, ...

Blanchard, Jean-Baptiste

(Duchesne). A French Jesuit and educator, born 12 October, 1731, at Tourteron in the ...

Blanchet, Augustin Magloire

Brother of François Norbert Blanchet , first Bishop of Walla Walla-Nesqually, State of ...

Blanchet, Franç Norbert

Missionary and first Archbishop of Oregon City, U.S.A. son of Pierre Blanchet, a Canadian ...

Blandina, Saint

Virgin and martyr. She belongs to the band of martyrs of Lyons who, after some of their ...

Blane, Saint

( Or BLAAN). Bishop and Confessor in Scotland, b. on the island of Bute, date unknown; d. ...

Blasphemy

Blasphemy (Greek blaptein , "to injure", and pheme , "reputation") signifies etymologically ...

Blastares, Matthew

A monk of the Order of St. Basil, living in the fourteenth century, who applied himself to the ...

Blathmac, Saint

A distinguished Irish monk, b. in Ireland about 750. He suffered martyrdom in Iona, about ...

Blemmida, Nicephorus

(B LEMMYDES ) A learned monk and writer of the Green Church, b. about 1198, at ...

Blenkinsop

Peter Blenkinsop Catholic publisher, b. in Ireland ; married a sister of Archbishop Oliver Kelly ...

Blessed Sacrament, Congregation of the

An enclosed congregation and a reform of the Dominican Order devoted to the perpetual adoration ...

Blessed Sacrament, Exposition of the

Exposition is a manner of honouring the Holy Eucharist, by exposing It, with proper solemnity, to ...

Blessed Sacrament, Reservation of the

The practice of preserving after the celebration of the Liturgy a portion of the consecrated ...

Blessed Sacrament, Sisters of the

One of the most recent congregations of religious women in the Catholic Church and one of ...

Blessed Sacrament, The

Since Christ is present under the appearances of bread and wine in a sacramental way, the ...

Blessed Sacrament, Visits to the

By this devotional practice, which is of comparatively modern development, the presence of ...

Blessed Virgin Mary, The

The Blessed Virgin Mary is the mother of Jesus Christ, the mother of God. In general, the ...

Blessed, The

There are at present two ways in which the Church allows public worship to be paid those who ...

Blessing

In its widest acceptation this word has a variety of meanings in the sacred writings: It has ...

Blessing, Apostolic

The solemn blessing ( urbi et orbi ) which, before 1870, the Holy Father himself gave from the ...

Blind, Education of the

Although the education of the blind as a class dates back no further than the year 1784, ...

Blois

DIOCESE OF BLOIS (BLESENSIS). Coextensive with the civil department of Loir-et-Cher and a ...

Blomevenna, Peter

(PETER A LEYDIS) Carthusian, b. at Leyden, in Holland in 1466; d. 30 September, 1536. Owing to ...

Blood Indians

A group of North American aborigines forming part of the Blackfeet Tribe, which, with the ...

Blosius, François-Louis

(Also called de Blois ). A Benedictine abbot and spiritual writer, born at Donstienne, ...

Bluetooth, Harold

(B LAATAND ) Born 911; died 1 November, 985 or 986. He was the son of King Gorm the Old of ...

Blyssen, Heinrich

Born at Cologne or Bonn, Germany in 1526; died at Graz, 24 April, 1586. He entered the Society ...

Blyth, Francis

English Carmelite, reviser of the Douay Bible, born c. 1705; d. in London, 11 December 1772. ...

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Bo 148

Bobadilla, Nicolaus

Born at Valencia, Spain, 1511; died at Loretto, Italy, 23 September, 1590. After having taught ...

Bobbio, Abbey and Diocese of

The diocese ( Ebovium , or Bobium ; Dioecesis Eboviensis , or Bobiensis ), which is ...

Bobola, Saint Andrew

Martyr, born of an old and illustrious Polish family, in the Palatinate of Sandomir, 1590; ...

Boccaccino

Boccaccio Boccaccino An eminent Italian painter, b. at Cremona, 1460, and d. probably in 1525 ...

Boccaccio, Giovanni

Italian novelist, b. in Paris, 1313; d. in Certaldo, 21 December, 1375. His father, a merchant ...

Bocking, Edward

(or B OKKYNG ). English Benedictine, b. of East Anglian parentage, end of fifteenth century; ...

Bodey, Ven. John

Martyr, b. at Wells, Somerset: 1549; d. at Andover, Wilts., 2 November, 1583. He studied at ...

Bodin, Jean

Born at Angers, 1520, probably of Jewish origin: died at Laon, 1596. He studied and taught ...

Bodone

A titular see of Albania. The name is a dialectic form of Dodone, in Epirus, near Janina at the ...

Boece, Hector

(Also BOYCE and BOETHIUS) Chronicler and one of the founders of the University of Aberdeen, b. ...

Boeri, Petrus

(BOHIER) A french benedictine canonist and bishop, b. during the first quarter of the ...

Boethius, Anicius Manlius Severinus

Roman statesman and philosopher, often styled "the last of the Romans", regarded by tradition as ...

Bogotá

ARCHDIOCESE OF SANTA FÉ DE BOGOTÁ (BOGOTENSIS) The city of Bogotá, capital ...

Bohemia

(Germ. Böhmen , or formerly Böheim ; Latin Bohemia or Bojohemum ), a cisleithan ...

Bohemian Brethren

(MORAVIAN BRETHREN, or UNITAS FRATRUM). DEFINITION AND DOCTRINAL POSITION "Bohemian Brethren" ...

Bohemians of the United States

A traveler who has seen the natural beauties of Bohemia, its vast resources, and the thrift of ...

Boiano

Diocese in the province of Benevento, Italy, suffragan to the Archbishopric of Benevento. The ...

Boiardo, Matteo Maria

An Italian poet, b. about 1434, at, or near, Scandiano (Reggio-Emilia); d. at Reggio, 20 ...

Boileau-Despréaux, Nicholas

French poet, b. at Paris, 1 November, 1636; d. there, 13 March, 1711. He was educated at the ...

Bois-le-Duc

The Diocese of Bois-le-Duc ( Buscoducensis ) lies within the Dutch province of Brabant, and ...

Boise

Diocese of Boise ( Xylopolitana ) Created by Leo XIII, 25 August, 1893, embraces the ...

Boisgelin, Jean de Dieu-Raymond de Cucé de

French prelate and cardinal, b. of an ancient family at Rennes in Brittany, 27 February, ...

Boisil, Saint

Superior of Melrose Abbey , d. 664. Almost all that is known of St. Boisil is learnt from Bede ...

Bokenham, Osbern

(Bokenam) English Augustinian friar and poet, b. 1393 (the year in which the most famous of ...

Bolanden, Conrad von

(Joseph Bischoff) A German novelist, son of a rich merchant, b. 9 August, 1828, at ...

Bolgeni, Giovanni Vincenzo

Theologian and controversialist, b. at Bergamo, Italy, 22 January, 1733; d. at Rome, 3 May, ...

Bolivia

A South American republic which lies between longitudes west of Greenwich 57 deg. 30' and 74 deg., ...

Bollandists, The

An association of ecclesiastical scholars engaged in editing the Acta Sanctorum. This work is a ...

Bollig, Johann

Distinguished Orientalist, born near Düren in Rhenish Prussia 23 August, 1821; died at ...

Bologna

ARCHDIOCESE OF BOLOGNA HISTORY Bologna is the principal city in the province of the same name, ...

Bologna, Giovanni da

Flemish Renaissance sculptor, b. at Douai, in Flanders, about 1524; d. at Florence in 1608. ...

Bologna, University of

A tradition of the thirteenth century attributed the foundation of this university to Theodosius ...

Bolsec, Jérôme-Hermès

A theologian and physician, b. probably at Paris, date unknown; d. at Lyons c. 1584. He ...

Bolton, Edmund

Historian, antiquary, and poet, born c. 1575; died c. 1633. The genuine loyalty in the Catholic ...

Bolzano, Bernhard

Austrian mathematician and philosopher, b. at Prague, 5 October, 1781; d. 18 December, 1848. As ...

Bombay

(BOMBAYENSIS) The Archdiocese of Bombay comprises the Island of Bombay with several outlying ...

Bommel, Cornelius Richard Anton van

Bishop of Liège, born at Leyden, in Holland on 5 April, 1790; died 7 April 1852. He was ...

Bon Secours, Institutes of

I. INSTITUTE OF BON SECOURS (DE PARIS) The first of the congregations of nursing sisters, gardes ...

Bona Mors Confraternity, The

(Bona Mors = "Happy Death"). The Bona Mors Confraternity was founded 2 October, 1648, in the ...

Bona, Giovanni

A distinguished cardinal and author, b. of an old French family at Mondovì, in ...

Bonagratia of Bergamo

(Or PERGAMO) Friar Minor , theologian, and canonist, date of birth unknown; d. at Munich, ...

Bonal, François de

Bishop of Clermont, b. 1734 at the castle of Bonal, near Agen ; d. at Munich, 1800. He had ...

Bonal, Raymond

French theologian and founder of the Congregation of the Priests of St. Mary (Bonalists), b. ...

Bonald, Louis-Gabriel-Ambroise, Vicompte de

French statesman, writer, and philosopher, b. at Monna, near Millau, in Rouergue (Aveyron) 2 ...

Bonald, Louis-Jacques-Maurice de

Cardinal, b. at Millau, in Rouergue (now Aveyron), 30 October, 1787, d. at Lyons, 25 Feb., 1870. ...

Bonaparte, Charles-Lucien-Jules-Laurent

Prince of Canino and Musignano, ornithologist, b. in Paris, 24 May, 1803; d. in the same city 29 ...

Bonaventure, College of Saint

At Quaracchi, near Florence, Italy, famous as the centre of literary activity in the Order of ...

Bonaventure, Saint

Doctor of the Church, Cardinal-Bishop of Albano, Minister General of the Friars Minor, born at ...

Boncompagni, Balthasar

Italian mathematician, b. at Rome, 10 May, 1821; d. 13 April, 1894. He was a member of the ...

Bonet, Juan Pablo

A Spanish priest and one of the first to give attention to the education of the deaf and dumb ...

Bonet, Nicholas

Friar Minor, theologian, and missionary,date of birth uncertain; d. 1360. Probably a Frenchman by ...

Bonfrère, Jacques

Biblical scholar, born at Dinant, Belgium, 12 April, 1573; died at Tournai, 9 May, 1642. He ...

Boni Homines

(Or BONSHOMMES). This name was popularly given to at least three religious orders in the ...

Boniface Association

(B ONIFATIUSVEREIN ). The Boniface Association, one of the most successful Catholic ...

Boniface I, Pope Saint

Elected 28 December, 418; d. at Rome, 4 September, 422. Little is known of his life antecedent to ...

Boniface II, Pope

Elected 17 September, 530; died October, 532. In calling him the son of Sigisbald, the "Liber ...

Boniface III, Pope

Pope Boniface III, of Roman extraction and the son of John Cataadioce, was elected to succeed ...

Boniface IV, Pope Saint

Son of John, a physician, a Marsian from the province and town of Valeria; he succeeded Boniface ...

Boniface IX, Pope

Elected at Rome, 2 November, 1389, as successor of the Roman Pope, Urban VI ; d. there, 1 ...

Boniface of Savoy

Forty-sixth Archbishop of Canterbury and son of Thomas, Count of Savoy, date of birth ...

Boniface V, Pope

A Neapolitan who succeeded Deusdedit after a vacancy of more than a year; consecrated 23 ...

Boniface VI, Pope

A Roman, elected in 896 by the Roman faction in a popular tumult, to succeed Formosus. He ...

Boniface VII, Antipope

(Previously B ONIFACE F RANCO ) A Roman and son of Ferrucius; was intruded into the ...

Boniface VIII, Pope

(B ENEDETTO G AETANO ) Born at Anagni about 1235; died at Rome, 11 October, 1303. He ...

Boniface, Saint

(WINFRID, WYNFRITH). Apostle of Germany, date of birth unknown; martyred 5 June, 755 (754); ...

Bonizo of Sutri

(Or BONITHO). Bishop of Sutri in Central Italy, in the eleventh century, an adherent of ...

Bonn, University of

(RHEINSCHE FRIEDRICH-WILHELMS-UNIVERSITÄT). An academy was founded at Bonn in 1777 by Max ...

Bonnard, Ven. Jean Louis

A French missionary and martyr, b. 1 March, 1824 at Saint-Christôt-en-Jarret ( Diocese of ...

Bonne-Espérance, The Abbey of

Situated near Binche, province of Hainault, Diocese of Tournai, Belgium. It owes its foundation ...

Bonnechose, Henri-Marie-Gaston Boisnormand de

Cardinal and senator, b. at Paris, 1800; d. 1883. Entering the magistracy, he became ...

Bonner, Edmund

Bishop of London, b. about 1500; d. 1569. He was the son of Edmund Bonner, a sawyer of Potter's ...

Bonnetty, Augustin

A French writer, b. at Entrevaux (dept. of Basses-Alpes) 9 May, 1798, d. at Paris, 26 March, ...

Bonosus

Bishop of Sardica, a heretic in the latter part of the fourth century. Against the common ...

Bonvicino, Alessandro

(Called Il Moretto, or Moretto da Brescia). One of the finest North Italian painters of the ...

Book of Common Prayer

I. HISTORY On 21 January, 1549, the first Act of Uniformity was passed imposing upon the whole ...

Book of Kells

An Irish manuscript containing the Four Gospels, a fragment of Hebrew names, and the Eusebian ...

Book of Martyrs, Foxe's

John Foxe was born at Boston in Lincolnshire, England, in 1516, and was educated at Magdalen ...

Books, Index of Prohibited

The Index of Prohibited Books, or simply "Index", is used in a restricted sense to signify the ...

Boré, Eugène

Orientalist, b. at Angers, 15 Aug., 1809; d. at Paris, 3 May, 1878. From the college of Angers ...

Bordeaux

(BURDIGALA). Archdiocese ; comprises the entire department of the Gironde and was established ...

Bordeaux, University of

The University of Bordeaux was founded during the English domination, under King Henry VI , in ...

Bordone, Cavaliere Paris

An eminent painter of the Venetian school, b. at Treviso, 1500 d. at Venice, 1570. A member of ...

Borgess, Caspar Henry

Third Bishop of Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A. b. at Kloppenburg, Hanover, Germany, 1 August, ...

Borgia, Stefano

Cardinal, born at Velletri, 3 December, 1731; died at Lyons, 1804; Italian theologian, ...

Borgo San-Donnino

Diocese in the province of Parma, Italy. The city takes its name from St. Domninus, who fled to ...

Borgo San-Sepolcro

Diocese situated in the province of Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy. The city is believed by some to ...

Borgognone, Ambrogio

(Real name AMBROGIO STEFANI DA FOSSANO). A distinguished Italian painter and architect, b. ...

Borie, Pierre-Rose-Ursule-Dumoulin

Bishop-elect of Acanthus, Vicar Apostolic of Western Tongking and Martyr ; b. 20 February, ...

Borneo

I. DUTCH BORNEO The former Vicariate of Bavaria was composed of Sumatra, Java, and the other ...

Borras, Francisco Nicolás

A distinguished Spanish painter, born at Cocentaina, 1530; died at Gandia, 1610. Going to ...

Borromeo, Andrea

An Italian missionary, born on the first half of the seventeenth century, at or near Milan ; ...

Borromeo, Federico

Cardinal and Archbishop of Milan, cousin and successor of St. Charles Borromeo, born at Milan ...

Borromeo, Saint Charles

St. Charles Borromeo -- Archbishop of Milan, Cardinal-Priest of the Title of St. Prassede, ...

Borromeo, Society of Saint Charles

(Borro-Mäusverein). A German Catholic association for the encouragement and diffusion ...

Borromini, Francesco

Architect and sculptor ; born 25 September, 1599, at Bissone; died ( by his own hand ) 1 ...

Borrus, Christopher

(Borri, Burrus) Missionary, mathematician, and astronomer, born at Milan in 1583; died at ...

Bosa, Diocese of

In the province of Cagliari, The city numbers about 35,000 inhabitants. St. Gregory the Great, ...

Bosch, Peter van der

Bollandist, born at Brussels, 19 October, 1686; died 14 November, 1736. After studying the ...

Bosco, Saint Giovanni (John)

( Or St. John Bosco; Don Bosco.) Founder of the Salesian Society. Born of poor parents in ...

Boscovich, Ruggiero Giuseppe

A Dalmatian Jesuit and well-known mathematician, astronomer, and natural philosopher, b. at ...

Bosio, Antonio

Known as "The Columbus of the Catacombs ", b. in the island of Malta about the year 1576; d. ...

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina form the north-western corner of the Balkan Peninsula. Taking the two ...

Boso

First Bishop of Merseburg, in the present Prussian Province of Saxony, and Apostle of the ...

Boso (Breakspear)

Third English Cardinal, date of birth uncertain, d. at Rome, about 1181. He was a Benedictine ...

Bossu, Jacques le

French theologian and Doctor of the Sorbonne, born at Paris 1546; died at Rome 1626. He ...

Bossuet, Jacques-Bénigne

A celebrated French bishop and pulpit orator, born at Dijon, 27 September, 1627, died at ...

Boste, Saint John

(Or JOHN BOAST.) Priest and martyr, b. of good Catholic family at Dufton, in Westmoreland, ...

Boston

Archdiocese ; comprises Essex, Middlesex, Suffolk, Norfolk, and Plymouth counties in the State ...

Bostra

Titular see of Syria. Bostra, "The fortress", is neither Bosor of Reuben and Moab ( ...

Bothrys

A titular see situated in Phoenicia. Bothrys is the Greek name of a city founded by Ithobaal, ...

Botticelli, Sandro

A famous Florentine painter. Born at Florence about 1447; died in the same city, 1510. ...

Botulph, Saint

(Or BOTOLPH.) Abbot, date of birth unknown; died c. 680. St. Botulph, the saint whose name ...

Boturini Benaducci, Lorenzo

A native of Milan in Lombardy who went to Mexico in 1736 by permission of the Spanish ...

Boucher, Pierre

Born at Lagny, a village near Mortagne in the Perche, France, 1622, died at Boucherville, 1717. ...

Bougaud, Louis-Victor-Emile

Bishop of Laval in France, b. at Dijon, 28 February 1823, d. at Laval 7 November, 1888. He ...

Bougeant, Guillaume-Hyacinthe

Born at Quimper in Brittany, in 1690; died at Paris, 1743. He entered the Society of Jesus ...

Bouhours, Dominique

French Jesuit author, born at Paris, 15 May, 1632; died 27 May, 1702. Entering the Society of ...

Bouillart, Jacques

A Benedictine monk of the Congregation of St.-Maur, b. in the Diocese of Chartres, 1669; ...

Bouillon, Cardinal de

(Emmanuel Thédore de la Tour d'Auvergne) French prelate and diplomat, b. 24 August, 1643, ...

Bouix, Marie Dominique

One of the best known and most distinguished of modern French canonists, b. 15 May, 1808, at ...

Boulainvilliers, Henri, Count of

Born at Saint-Saire (Seine-Inférieure) France, 11 October, 1658; died at Paris, 23 ...

Boulanger, André de

(PETIT-PÈRE ANDRÉ). A French monk and preacher, b. at Paris in 1578; d. 27 ...

Boulay, César-Egasse du

(BULÆUS). A French historian, b. in the beginning of the seventeenth century at ...

Boulogne, Etienne-Antoine

French bishop, b. at Avignon, 26 December 1747; d. at Troyes, 13 March, 1825. He was the son of ...

Bouquet, Martin

A learned Benedictine of the Congregation of St.-Maur, b. at Amiens, France, 6 August, 1685; ...

Bouquillon, Thomas

Born at Warneton, Belgium, 16 May, 1840; died at Brussels, 5 November, 1902; a Belgian ...

Bourassé, Jean-Jacques

Archæologist and historian, b. at Ste.-Maure (Indre-et-Loire), France, 22 December, 1813; ...

Bourchier, Thomas

Born 1406; died 1486, Cardinal, was the third son of William Bourchier, Earl of Eu, and of Lady ...

Bourdaloue, Louis

Born at Bourges, 20 August, 1632; died at Paris, 13 May, 1704. He is often described as the ...

Bourdeilles, Hélie de

Archbishop of Tours and Cardinal, b., probably, towards 1423, at the castle of Bourdeilles ...

Bourdon, Jean

Born at Rouen, France, 1612; died at Quebec, 1668. In 1634 he went to Canada and became the ...

Bourgade, François

A French missionary and philosopher, b. 7 July, 1806, at Gaujan, department of Gers; d. 21 May, ...

Bourges

ARCHDIOCESE OF BOURGES (BITURICÆ). Coextensive with the departments of Cher and Indre. ...

Bourget, Ignace

First Bishop of Montreal, P.Q., Canada, and titular Archbishop of Martianopolis, b. at Point ...

Bourgoing, François

Third Superior general of the Congregation of the Oratory in France and one of the early ...

Bourke, Ulick Joseph

Irish scholar and writer, b. 29 Dec., 1829, at Castlebar, Co. Mayo ; d. there, 22 Nov., 1887; ...

Bourne, Gilbert

Last Catholic Bishop of Bath and Wells , England, son of Philip Bourne of Worcestershire, ...

Bouvens, Charles de

French pulpit orator, b. at Bourg in 1750; d. in 1830. At an early age he embraced the ...

Bouvet, Joachim

Jesuit missionary, born at Le Mans, France (date unknown), died at Peking, China, 28 June, 1732. ...

Bouvier, Jean-Baptiste

Bishop of Le Mans, theologian, b. At St. Charles-la-Forêt, Mayenne, 16 January, 1783; d. ...

Bouvier, Jeanne-Marie, de La Motte-Guyon

A celebrated French mystic of the seventeenth century; born at Montargis, in the Orléanais, ...

Bova

DIOCESE OF BOVA. Situated in the civil province of Reggio, in Calabria, Italy, suffragan to ...

Bovino

Diocese in the province of Foggia, Italy, suffragan to the Archdiocese of Benevento. The city, ...

Bowyer, Sir George

Baronet, an eminent English writer on jurisprudence, as well as a prominent defender of the Holy ...

Boy-Bishop

The custom of electing a boy-bishop on the feast of St. Nicholas dates from very early ...

Boyce, John

Novelist, lecturer, and priest, well known under the assumed name of "Paul Peppergrass", born in ...

Boycotting

The name of boycotting was first aplied to a practice which had its origin in Ireland during the ...

Boyle Abbey

A celebrated Cistercian house situated on the River Boyle, nine miles northwest of Elphin, in ...

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Br 135

Brébeuf, Jean de

Jesuit missionary, born at Condé-sur-Vire in Normandy, 25 March, 1593; died in Canada, ...

Bréhal, Jean

A French Dominican theologian of the convent of Evreux ; died c. 1479. He was made Doctor of ...

Brück, Heinrich

Ecclesiastical historian and bishop, born at Bingen, 25 October, 1831; died 4 November, 1903. He ...

Brünn

Suffragan diocese of the Archdiocese of Olmutz, embracing the south-western part of Moravia, an ...

Bracken, Thomas

Poet, journalist, politician, b. in Ireland 21 December, 1843; d. at Dunedin, New Zealand , 16 ...

Bracton, Henry de

Also called HENRY OF BRACTON. A famous English juridical writer, the Blackstone of the ...

Bradley, Denis Mary

First Bishop of Manchester, New Hampshire , U.S.A. b. 25 February, 1846, at Castle-island, ...

Bradshaigh, Edward

An English Carmelite friar known in religion as Elias à Jesu; b. in Lancashire, ...

Bradshaw, Henry

English Benedictine and poet, b. in the City of Chester, England, date unknown; d. 1513. From ...

Brady, William Maziere

Ecclesiastical writer, b. in Dublin, 8 January, 1825; d. in Rome, 19 March, 1894. He was nephew ...

Braga, Archdiocese of

(Bracara Augusta, Civitas Bracarensis). Braga is situated in a flat fertile tract of land ...

Braga, Councils of

Many councils were held in Braga, some of them important. The authenticity of the so-called ...

Bragança-Miranda, Diocese of

(Brigantiensis.) This diocese is situated in the northeastern part of the Kingdom of ...

Brahminism

By Brahminism is meant the complex religion and social system which grew out of the ...

Braille, Louis

French educator and inventor, born 4 January 1809, at Coupvray, Seine-et-Marne, France ; died 6 ...

Bralion, Nicolas de

French Oratorian and ecclesiastical writer, born at Chars-en-Vexin, France, c. 1600; died at ...

Bramante, Donato

(Also called D 'A GNOLO after his father Angelo) Italian architect and painter, b. about ...

Brancaccio

An ancient and illustrious Neapolitan family, from which the "Brancas" of France were descended. ...

Brancati di Lauria, Francesco Lorenzo

Cardinal, Minor conventual, and theologian, b. at Lauria in the then Kingdom of Naples, 10 ...

Brancati, Francesco

Born in Sicily in 1607; he entered the Society of Jesus in 1624 and went to the Chinese ...

Branch Sunday

One of the medieval English names for Palm Sunday. The difficulty of procuring palms for that ...

Brandenburg

Formerly an electoral principality (the Mark of Brandenburg), and a diocese in the heart of the ...

Branly, Edouard

French physicist and inventor of the coherer employed in wireless telegraphy, born at Amiens, 23 ...

Brantôme, Seigneur de Bourdeille, Pierre de

One of the most famous of French writers of memoirs, b. in 1539, or a little later; d. 15 July, ...

Brant, Sebastian

A German humanist and poet, born at Stasburg in 1457 or 1458; died at the same place, 1521. He ...

Brasses, Memorial

Just when memorial brasses first came into use is not known; the earliest existing dated ...

Brasseur de Bourbourg, Charles Etienne, Abbé

Born at Bourbourg (Département du Nord), France, 1814; died at Nice in January, 1874. He ...

Brassicanus, Johann Alexander

A German humanist, born probably at Cannstatt, 1500; died at Vienna, 25 November, 1539. He was ...

Brassicanus, Johann Ludwig

Younger brother of Johann Alexander (b. at Tübingen, 1509; d. at Vienna, 3 June, 1549) went ...

Braulio, Saint

Bishop of Saragossa, date of birth unknown, d. at Saragossa c. 651. In 631 he succeeded his ...

Braun, Placidus

A Bavarian historian, b. at Peiting near Schongau in Upper Bavaria, 11 February, 1756; d. at ...

Braunschweig

A duchy situated in the mountainous central part of Northern Germany, comprising the region of the ...

Bravo, Francisco

As far as known, author of the first book on medicine printed in America. His "Opera Medicinalia ...

Brazil

(T HE U NITED S TATES OF B RAZIL ) A vast republic of central South America covering an ...

Bread, Liturgical Use of

In the Christian liturgy bread is used principally as one of the elements of the Eucharistic ...

Breadboxes, Altar

These are made of wood, tin, britannia, silver, or other metal. In order that the breads may not ...

Breads, Altar

Bread is one of the two elements absolutely necessary for the sacrifice of the Eucharist. It ...

Breast, Striking of the

Striking of the breast as a liturgical act is prescribed in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass ...

Breda

(BREDANA) Diocese situated in the Dutch province of Brabant and suffragan of Utrecht. The ...

Brehon Laws, The

Brehon law is the usual term for Irish native law, as administered in Ireland down to almost ...

Bremen

Formerly the seat of an archdiocese situated in the north-western part of the present German ...

Brenach, Saint

An Irish missionary in Wales, a contemporary of St. Patrick, and among the earliest of the ...

Brenan, Michael John

An ecclesiastical historian, born in Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1780; died at Dublin, February, ...

Brendan, Saint

St. Brendan of Ardfert and Clonfert, known also as Brendan the Voyager, was born in Ciarraighe ...

Brentano, Klemens Maria

A German poet, one of the most prominent members of the Romantic School. He was born at ...

Brescia

The Diocese of Brescia takes its name from the principal city in the province of the same name in ...

Breslau

Prince-Bishopric seated at Breslau, on the River Oder in the Prussian Province of Silesia. ...

Bressani, Francesco Giuseppe

An Indian missionary, born in Rome, 6 May, 1612; died at Florence, 9 September, 1672. He entered ...

Brest, Union of

Brest -- in Russian, Brest-Litovski; in Polish, Brzesc; in the old chronicles, called Brestii, or ...

Brethren of the Lord, The

A group of persons closely connected with the Saviour appears repeatedly in the New ...

Breton, Raymond

A noted French missionary among the Caribbean Indians, b. at Baune, 3 September, 1609; d. at Caen, ...

Bretton, Venerable John

(Or Bretton). A layman and martyr, of all ancient family of Bretton near Barnsley in ...

Breviary

This subject may be divided, for convenience of treatment, as follows: I. DEFINITION; II. ...

Breviary, Aberdeen

This breviary may be described as the Sarum Office in a Scottish form. The use of the ancient ...

Breviary, Reform of the Roman

By the Apostolic Constitution "Divino Afflatu" of Pius X (1 November, 1911), a change was made ...

Brewer, Heinrich

A German historian, born at Puffendorf in Germany, 6 September, 1640; died at the same place ...

Briçonnet

(1) Guillaume Briçonnet A French cardinal, b. at Tours, date of birth unknown; d. at ...

Briand, Joseph Olivier

Seventh Bishop of Quebec, b. in 1715 at Plérin, Brittany; d. 25 June, 1794. He studied ...

Briant, Saint Alexander

English Jesuit and martyr, born in Somersetshire of a yeoman family about 1556; executed at ...

Bribery

The payment or the promise of money or other lucrative consideration to induce another, while ...

Bridaine, Jacques

Preacher, b. at Chusclan, France, 21 March, 1701; d. at Roquemaure, 22 December, 1767. Having ...

Bridge-Building Brotherhood, The

During the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, we hear of the existence of various religious ...

Bridget of Sweden, Saint

(Also Birgitta). The most celebrated saint of the Northern kingdoms, born about 1303; died 23 ...

Bridgett, Thomas Edward

Priest and author, b. at Derby, England, 20 January, 1829, of Protestant parents ; d. at St. ...

Bridgewater Treatises

These publications derive their origin and their title from the Rev. Francis Henry Egerton, eighth ...

Bridgewater, John

Known also as AQUAPONTANUS, historian of the Catholic Confessors under Queen Elizabeth, b. in ...

Briefs and Bulls

A bulla was originally a circular plate or boss of metal, so called from its resemblance in ...

Brieuc, Saint

(Briocus, Brioc, or Bru). A Celtic saint of Brittany who received his education in Ireland ...

Brigid of Ireland, Saint

(Incorrectly known as BRIDGET). Born in 451 or 452 of princely ancestors at Faughart, near ...

Brigidines, Institute of the

(SISTERS OF ST. BRIGID.) The Institute of the Brigidines was established by Most Rev. Dr. ...

Brigittines

The Brigittine Order (also, ORDER OF ST. SAVIOUR) was founded in 1346 by St. Brigit, or Bridget, ...

Brignon, John

Born at St. Malo in 1629; died at Paris, 12 June, 1712. He was a member of the Society of Jesus ...

Bril, Paulus

A brilliant Flemish painter and engraver, born at Antwerp, 1556; died in Rome, 7 October, 1626. ...

Brillmacher, Peter Michael

Born at Cologne in 1542, died at Mainz, 25 August, 1595. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1558, ...

Brindholm, Ven. Edmund

(Or B RYNDEHOLME .) Martyr and parish priest of Our Lady's Church at Calais, accused of ...

Brindisi

Brindisi—called by the Romans Brundusium or Brundisium , by the Greeks Brentesion ...

Brinkley, Stephen

Confessor of the Faith, imprisoned and tortured as manager of a secret press for the ...

Brisacier, Jacques-Charles de

Orator and ecclesiastical writer, b. at Bourges in 1641, d. at Paris, 23 March, 1736. At the ...

Brisacier, Jean de

Controversialist, b. at Blois, France, 9 June, 1592; entered the Society of Jesus in 1619, d. at ...

Brisbane

Comprises that part of the State of Queensland, Australia, which lies south of the 24th parallel ...

Brischar, Johann Nepomucene

Church historian, born at Horb in Würtemberg in 1819, studied theology at the University ...

Bristol, Ancient Diocese of

(BRISTOLIA, BRISTOLIENSIS). This English diocese, which takes its very origin from measures ...

Bristow, Richard

Born at Worcester, 1538, died at Harrow-on-the-Hill, 1581. He went to the University of Oxford ...

British Columbia

British Columbia is the westernmost province of the Dominion of Canada. Territorially, it is also ...

Britius, Francis

An orientalist, and a monk of Rennes in Brittany; date of birth and death unknown. He entered ...

Brittain, Thomas Lewis

Born near Chester, England, 1744; died at Hartpury Court, 1827. His parents were Protestants, ...

Britto, Blessed John de

Martyr ; born in Lisbon, 1 March, 1647, and was brought up in court; martyred in India 11 ...

Britton, Venerable John

(Or Bretton). A layman and martyr, of all ancient family of Bretton near Barnsley in ...

Brixen

A Prince-Bishopric of Austria, suffragan of Salzburg, embracing the greater part of Northern ...

Brogan, Saint

Flourished in the sixth or seventh century. Several persons in repute for holiness seem to have ...

Broglie, Auguste-Théodore-Paul de

Abbé, professor of apologetics at the Institut Catholique at Paris, and writer on ...

Broglie, Jacques-Victor-Albert, Duc de

French statesman and historian, b. at Paris, 13 June, 1821; d. there 19 January, 1901. After a ...

Broglie, Maurice-Jean de

Born in Paris, 5 September, 1766; d. there, 20 June, 1821. He was the son of the Field-Marshal, ...

Brogny, Jean-Allarmet de

(Or JEAN-ALOUZIER). A French Cardinal, b. in 1342 at Brogny, in Savoy ; d. at Rome, 1426. ...

Bromyard, John

Theologian, d. about 1390. He takes his name from his birthplace in Herefordshire, England. He ...

Brondel, John Baptist

First Bishop of Helena, Montana, U.S.A. b. at Bruges, Belgium, 23 February, 1842; d. at ...

Brookby, Anthony

( Or Brorbey). Friar Minor and English martyr, died 19 July 1537. Brookby was lecturer in ...

Brookes, James

Last Catholic Bishop of Gloucester, England, b. May, 1512, in Hampshire, d. 1560. Proceeding to ...

Brooklyn

Comprises the counties of Kings, Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk, or all of Long Island, in the State ...

Brosse, Jean-Baptiste de la

A Jesuit missionary, born 1724 at Magnac, Angoumois, France ; died 1782. He studied classics ...

Brothers Hospitallers of St. John of God

St. John of God, the founder of this religious institution, was born 8 March, 1495, at Montemor ...

Broughton, Richard

( alias Rouse) Born about 1558 at Great Stukeley, Huntingdonshire; died according to ...

Brouwer, Christoph

(Browerius). Historian, born 12 March, 1559, at Arnheim, Holland ; died in 1617, at Trier, ...

Brown, William

A naval officer of the Republic of Argentina, b. 1777, in the County Mayo, Ireland ; d. 3 May, ...

Browne, Charles Farrar

(ARTEMUS WARD). Humorist, b. at Waterford, Oxford County, Maine, U.S.A. 26 April, 1834; d. ...

Brownson, Orestes Augustus

Philosopher, essayist, reviewer, b. at Stockbridge, Vermont, U.S.A., 16 September, 1803; d. at ...

Brownson, Sarah

Daughter of Orestes A. Brownson, b. at Chelsea, Massachusetts, 7 June, 1839; married William ...

Brownsville

Vicariate Apostolic, erected 1874. Previous to this date the entire State of Texas was under ...

Bru, Saint

(Briocus, Brioc, or Bru). A Celtic saint of Brittany who received his education in Ireland ...

Bruel, Joachim

(Brulius). A theologian and historian, born early in the seventeenth century at Vorst, a ...

Brueys, David-Augustin de

A French theologian and dramatic author, born at Aix in 1640; died 25 November, 1723, at ...

Brugère, Louis-Frédéric

Professor of apologetics and church history, born at Orléans, 8 October 1823; died at ...

Bruges

The chief town of the Province of West Flanders in the Kingdom of Belgium. Pope Nicholas I in ...

Brugière, Pierre

A French priest, Jansenist, and Juror, born at Thiers, 3 October, 1730; died at Paris, 7 ...

Brugman, John

A renowned Franciscan preacher of the fifteenth century, b. at Kempen in the Diocese of Cologne, ...

Brumidi, Constantino

An Italian-American historical painter, celebrated for his fresco work in the Capitol at ...

Brumoy, Pierre

Born at Rouen in Normandy, 1688; entered the Society of Jesus in 1704; died in Paris, 1742. ...

Brunellesco, Filippo

(Or Brunelleschi) An architect and sculptor, born at Florence, 1377; died there 16 April, ...

Brunetière, Ferdinand

A French critic and professor, born at Toulon, 19 July, 1849; died at Paris, 9 December, 1906. ...

Brunforte, Ugolino

Friar Minor and chronicler, born c. 1262; died c. 1348. His father Rinaldo, Lord of Sarnano in the ...

Bruni, Leonardo

An eminent Italian humanist, b. of poor and humble parents at Arezzo, the birthplace of ...

Brunner, Francis de Sales

The founder of the Swiss-American congregation of the Benedictines, b. 10 January, 1795, at ...

Brunner, Sebastian

A versatile and voluminous writer, b. in Vienna, 10 December, 1814; d. there, 27 November, 1893. ...

Bruno of Querfurt, Saint

(Also called BRUN and BONIFACE). Second Apostle of the Prussians and martyr, born about ...

Bruno the Saxon

(SAXONICUS.) A German chronicler of the eleventh Century and author of the "Historia de Bello ...

Bruno, Giordano

Italian philosopher, b. at Nola in Campania, in the Kingdom of Naples, in 1548; d. at Rome, ...

Bruno, Saint

Bishop of Segni, in Italy, born at Solero, Piedmont, about 1048; died 1123. He received his ...

Bruno, Saint

Confessor, ecclesiastical writer, and founder of the Carthusian Order. He was born at Cologne ...

Brunswick

A duchy situated in the mountainous central part of Northern Germany, comprising the region of the ...

Brus, Anton

Archbishop of Prague, b. at. Muglitz in Moravia, 13 February, 1518; d. 28 August, 1580. After ...

Brusa

A titular see of Bithynia in Asia Minor. According to Strabo, XII, iv, the city was founded by ...

Brussels

(From Bruk Sel , marsh-castle; Flemish Brussel , German Brussel , French Bruxelles ). ...

Bruté de Rémur, Simon William Gabriel

First Bishop of Vincennes, Indiana, U.S.A. (now Indianapolis ), b. at Rennes, France, 20 March ...

Bruyas, Jacques

Born at Lyons, France, 13 July, 1635; died at Sault St. Louis, Canada, 15 June 1712. He ...

Bryant, John Delavau

Physician, poet, author, and editor, b. in Philadelphia, U.S.A. 1811; d. 1877. He was the son of ...

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Bu 67

Bubastis

A titular see of Lower Egypt, on the right bank of the Pelusiac branch of the Nile, near the ...

Bucelin, Gabriel

(Buzlin). A Benedictine historical writer, born at Diessenhofen in Thurgau, 29 December, ...

Bucer, Martin

(Also called BUTZER.) One of the leaders in the South German Reformation movement, b. 11 ...

Bucharest

(B UCHAREST ; B UCARESTIENSIS ; Rumanian, B UCHARESCI "City of enjoyment") Comprises the ...

Buck, Victor De

Bollandist, born at Oudenarde, Flanders, 21 April, 1817; died 28 June, 1876. His family was one ...

Buckfast Abbey

The date of the foundation of the monastery of Our Lady of Buckfast, two miles from ...

Buckley, Sir Patrick Alphonsus

A soldier, lawyer, stateman, judge, born near Castletownsend, County Cork, Ireland, in 1841; died ...

Buckley, Venerable John

( Alias John Jones; alias John Griffith; in religion, Godfrey Maurice). Priest and martyr, ...

Budé, Guillaume

(Budaeus). A French Hellenist, born at Paris, 1467; died there 22 August, 1540. He studied at ...

Buddhism

The religious, monastic system, founded c. 500 B.C. on the basis of pantheistic Brahminism. The ...

Budweis

(Czech, BUDEJOVICE; Latin BUDOVICIUM; BOHEMO-BUDVICENSIS). A diocese situated in Southern ...

Buenos Aires

The federal capital of the Argentine Republic , and the second city of the Latin races in the ...

Buffalo

Diocese established 23 April, 1847, now comprises the counties of Erie, Niagara, Genesee, ...

Buffier, Claude

A philosopher, and author, born in Poland, of French parents, 25 May, 1661; died in Paris, 17 ...

Buglio, Louis

A celebrated missionary in China, mathematician, and theologian, born at Mineo, Sicily, 26 ...

Buil, Bernardo

(Also Boil or Boyal.) A Friar Minor. The fact that there were two religious of the name of ...

Buildings, Ecclesiastical

This term comprehends all constructions erected for the celebration of liturgical acts, whatever ...

Bukarest

(B UCHAREST ; B UCARESTIENSIS ; Rumanian, B UCHARESCI "City of enjoyment") Comprises the ...

Bulgaria

A European kingdom in the northeastern part of the Balkan Peninsula, bounded by the Black Sea, ...

Bull-Fight, The Spanish

Overview Neither the English term nor the German ( Stiergefecht ) used to designate this ...

Bulla Aurea

(Golden Bull ). A fundamental law of the Holy Roman Empire; probably the best known of all ...

Bullaker, Ven. Thomas

( Also John Baptist). A Friar Minor and English martyr, born at Chichester about the ...

Bullarium

Bullarium is a term commonly applied to a collection of bulls and other analogous papal ...

Bullion, Angélique

Born in Paris, at commencement of the seventeenth century, her parents being Guichard Favre and ...

Bulls and Briefs

A bulla was originally a circular plate or boss of metal, so called from its resemblance in ...

Bulstrode, Sir Richard

A soldier, diplomatist, and author, born 1610; died 1711, was the second son of Edward Bulstrode ...

Bunderius, Joannes

(VAN DEN BUNDERE). A Flemish theologian and controversialist, born of distinguished parents ...

Buonarroti, Michelangelo

Italian sculptor, painter, and architect, b. at Caprese in the valley of the upper Arno, 6 March, ...

Burchard of Basle

(Also of HASENBURG or ASUEL, from his ancestral castle in Western Berne, Switzerland ). ...

Burchard of Würzurg, Saint

First bishop of Würzurg, b. in England of Anglo-Saxon parents, date unknown; d. in ...

Burchard of Worms

Bishop of that see, b. of noble parents in Hesse, Germany, after the middle of the tenth ...

Burckmair, Hans

(Or Burgkmair). A painter of the Swabian school, b. at Augsburg in 1473; d. in 1531. He was ...

Burgis, Edward Ambrose

A Dominican historian and theologian, b. in England c. 1673; d. in Brussels, 27 April, 1747. ...

Burgoa, Francisco

Born at Oaxaca about 1600; d. at Teopozotlan in 1681. He entered the Dominican Order 2 August, ...

Burgos

(B URGENSIS ) The Archdiocese of Burgos (from burgi, burgorum , signifying a ...

Burgundy

(Latin Burgundia , German Burgund , French Bourgogne ). In medieval times ...

Burial, Christian

The interment of a deceased person with ecclesiastical rites in consecrated ground. The Jews ...

Buridan, Jean

French scholastic philosopher of the fourteenth century, b. at Béthune, in the district of ...

Burigny, Jean Lévesque de

Historian, b. at Reims, 1692; d. at Paris, 1785. In 1713, with his brothers, Champeaux and ...

Burkard, Franz

The name of two celebrated German jurists. One died suddenly at Rain, 9 December 1539. He began to ...

Burke, Edmund

First Vicar Apostolic of Nova Scotia, b. in the parish of Maryborough, County Kildare, Ireland, ...

Burke, Thomas

(THOMAS DE BURGO) Bishop of Ossory, b. at Dublin, Ireland, about 1709; d. at Kilkenny, 25 ...

Burke, Thomas Nicholas

A celebrated Dominican orator, b. 8 September, 1830, in Galway ; d. 2 July, 1882, at ...

Burleigh, Walter

(Also: Walter Burley; Burlæus). Friar Minor and medieval philosopher, b. in 1275 and d. in ...

Burlington

(Burlingtonensis). Diocese established 14 July, 1853; comprises the whole State of Vermont , ...

Burma

Before its annexation by the British Burma consisted of the kingdoms of Ava and Pegu. In 1548 St. ...

Burnett, Peter Hardeman

First American Governor of California, U.S.A. b. in Nashville, Tennessee, 15 Nov., 1807, of ...

Burns, James

Publisher and author, b. near Montrose, Forfarshire, Scotland, 1808; d. in London, 11 April, ...

Burse

( Bursa , "hide", "skin"; whence "bag" or "purse"). A receptacle in which, for reasons of ...

Bursfeld, The Abbey of

In the Middle Ages on of the most celebrated Benedictine monasteries in Germany was the ...

Bury St. Edmund's, The Abbey of

The first religious foundation there was established by Sigebert, King of the East Angles, who ...

Busée, Pierre

(Busæus or Buys). A Jesuit theologian, born at Nimwegen in 1540; died at Vienna in ...

Bus, Venerable César de

A priest and founder of two religious congregations, b. 3 February, 1544, at Cavaillon, Comtat ...

Busembaum, Hermann

Moral theologian, born at Notteln, Westphalia, 1600; died at Münster, 31 January, 1668. He ...

Busiris

A titular see taking its title from one of the many Egyptian cities of the same name. This ...

Buskins

(Caligæ). Ceremonial stockings of silk, sometimes interwoven with gold threads, and even ...

Buss, Franz Joseph, Ritter von

Jurist, b. 23 March, 1803 at Zell in Baden ; d. 31 January, 1878, at Freiburg im Breisgau. He ...

Bustamante, Carlos María

Mexican statesman and historian, b. at Oaxaca, Mexico, 4 November, 1774; d. in Mexico, 29 ...

Buston, Thomas Stephen

(or Busten) A Jesuit missionary and author, born 1549, in the Diocese of Salisbury , ...

Bute, John Patrick Crichton-Stuart, Third Marquess of

Born at Mountstuart, Bute, 12 September, 1847; d. at Dumfries House, Ayrshire, 9 October, 1900, ...

Buteux, Jacques

French missionary in Canada. Born at Abbeville, in Picardy, 11 April, 1600; slain by the ...

Butler, Alban

Historian, b. 10 October, 1710, at Appletree, Northamptonshire, England ; d. at St-Omer, ...

Butler, Charles

One of the most prominent figures among the English Catholics of his day, b. in London, 1750, d. ...

Butler, Mary Joseph

First Irish Abbess of the Irish Benedictine Abbey of Our Lady of Grace, at Ypres, Flanders, ...

Butler, Sir William Francis

Born at Suirville, Co. Tipperary, Ireland, 31 October, 1838; died 7 June, 1910, was the son of ...

Buttress

A pilaster, pier, or body of masonry projecting beyond the main face of the wall and intended to ...

Buxton, Ven. Chrisopher

Priest and martyr, b. in Derbyshire; d. at Canterbury, 1 October, 1588. He was a scholar of ...

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Byblos

A titular see of Phoenicia. Byblos is the Greek name of Gebal "The Mountain", one of the oldest ...

Bye-Altar

An altar that is subordinate to the central or high altar. The term is generally applied to ...

Byllis

A titular see of Epirus Nova (Albania), whose title is often added to that of Apollonia among ...

Byrd, William

English composer, born in London in 1542 or 1543; died 4 July, 1623. He was the son of a ...

Byrne, Andrew

Bishop of Little Rock, Arkansas, U.S.A. b. at Navan, Co. Meath, Ireland, 5 December, 1802; ...

Byrne, Richard

Brevet brigadier general, United States Army, b. in Co. Cavan, Ireland, 1832; d. at Washington, ...

Byrne, William

Missionary and educator, born in County Wicklow, Ireland, in 1780; died at Bardstown, Kentucky, ...

Byzantine Architecture

A mixed style, i.e. a style composed of Graeco-Roman and Oriental elements which, in earlier ...

Byzantine Art

The art of the Eastern Roman Empire and of its capital Byzantium, or Constantinople. The term ...

Byzantine Empire, The

The ancient Roman Empire having been divided into two parts, an Eastern and a Western, the Eastern ...

Byzantine Literature

To grasp correctly the essential characteristics of Byzantine literature, it is necessary first ...

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