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Regino of Prüm

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Date of birth unknown; d. at Trier in 915. According to the statements of a later era Regino was the son of noble parents and was born at the stronghold of Altrip on the Rhine near Speyer. Nothing is known concerning his life until he was elected abbot of Prüm in 892. From his election as abbot and from his writings, it is evident that he had entered the Benedictine Order, probably at Prüm itself, and that he had been a diligent student. The rich and celebrated Abbey of Prüm suffered greatly during the ninth century from the marauding incursions of the Normans. It had been twice seized and ravaged, in 882 and 892. After its second devastation the Abbot Farabert resigned his office and Regino was elected his successor. His labours for the restoration of the devastated abbey were hampered by the struggle between contending parties in Lorraine. In 899 Regino was driven from his office by Richarius, later Bishop of Liège, the brother of Count Gerhard and count Mattfried of Hennegau. Richarius was made abbot ; Regino resigned the position and retired to Trier, where he was honourably received by Archbishop Ratbod. He supported the archbishop in the latter's efforts to carry out ecclesiastical reforms in that troubled era, rebuilt the Abbey of St. Martin that had been laid waste by the Normans, accompanied the archbishop on visitations, and used his leisure for writing. At Ratbod's suggestion he wrote his work on ecclesiastical discipline for use in ecclesiastical visitations (see CANONS, COLLECTIONS OF ANCIENT, III, 286); he also wrote a treatise "De harmonica institutione" [ed. Coussemaker, "Scriptores de musica medii aevi", II (Paris, 1867), 1-73], for the improvement of liturgical singing; further, his great historical work, the chronicle (see ANNALS, I, 533). Regino was buried in the monastery of St. Maximin near Trier.

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