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FT-59041-11
The Archbishop of Reims, his Court Poets, and Church Reform in the Late Eleventh Century
John Ott, Portland State University

Grant details: https://apps.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=FT-59041-11

Texts and Church Reform: The Eleventh-Century Manuscripts of the Provosts of Reims (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Texts and Church Reform: The Eleventh-Century Manuscripts of the Provosts of Reims
Author: John S. Ott
Abstract: This paper examines two manuscripts belonging to two successive provosts of Sainte-Marie (Notre-Dame) of Reims, Odalric (fl. 1025-1075) and Manasses (1075/6-1096; later archbishop, 1096-1106). The manuscripts, currently Bibliothèque municipale de Reims Mss. 15 and 1402, both bear an ex libris clearly identifying their owners. BM Reims 15 contains a variety of texts, including the capitular necrology (10th-12th century), a tripartite Psalter, a farrago of canons, an episcopal list of Reims, and the earliest known copy (I do not believe it has been identified as such) of the Textus miraculi quod Dominus ad destructionem symoniacae heresis operari dignatus est in episcopatu Florentino (on Petrus Igneus and Bishop Petrus Mezzabarbo of Florence). Its contents, added at different times from ca. 1050-, indicate that BM Reims 15 was very much a ‘working’ text, a sort of reference or archive for the provost and chapter. BM Reims 1402, belonging to Manasses, is more straightforward. A passionary (hyemalis secundus), its texts focus heavily on local bishop-saints (Archbishops Remigius, Rigobertus) and fathers of the church (Pope Gregory I, Pope Sylvester, Benedict). It further contains, inserted just before the vita of Pope Gregory, four of that pontiff’s letters, apparently selected for their thematic significance and, I will argue, connection to reform ideas on clerical celibacy and simony. I will argue that their manuscripts reveal the means by which the seminal ideas of church reform concerning simony and priestly conduct were introduced into the powerful archdiocese of Reims. Collectively, they suggest the ‘indirect’ and often piecemeal ways in which reformist ideas were transmitted—through textual exempla and canonical farragos—which adjusts our traditional view of reform as directly conveyed through intentional canonical collections or papal fiat. BM Reims 15 and 1402 give us a taste of what church reform ‘on the ground’ looked like.
Date: 08/11/2012
Conference Name: XIV Quadrennial International Congress of Medieval Canon Law, St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto

Poetry, Pride and Power: The Archbishop’s Court at Reims and the Politics of Reform in the Late Eleventh Century (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Poetry, Pride and Power: The Archbishop’s Court at Reims and the Politics of Reform in the Late Eleventh Century
Abstract: This paper examined the clash of cultures between the court poets of archbishop Manasses I of Reims (c. 1069-1080) and the reform party in the cathedral chapter, using the texts produced by both parties in the course of their conflict. It demonstrates an important "culture war" between reformed and unreformed ideas of clerical life and patronage.
Author: John S. Ott
Date: 09/12/2012
Location: University of Nevada-Reno


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