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Arnoldi, Bartholomaeus


Augustinian, Luther's teacher, later opponent; b. Usingen near Frankfort, 1465; d. Würzburg, Sept. 9, 1532. Arnoldi (commonly called Usingen) entered the University of Erfurt in 1484 and received a master of arts (1491) and a doctorate in theology (1514). As a professor of philosophy there he expounded the nominalist viewpoint (via moderna ) of Ockham and Biel, which Luther (studying there, 150105) later reflected in his theology. Around 1512 Luther persuaded him to join the Augustinians, for whom Usingen later taught theology. Always firmly Catholic, although he attacked abuses, Usingen rejected Luther's 95 theses and broke with him in 1520. He feared the consequences of the new doctrines, especially that on good works. Luther tried persuasion, but after Usingen's sermons at Erfurt in 1521, his violent reply provoked a war of letters. Although weak as theologian and Latinist, Usingen answered Luther's ideas on their own ground after thorough study. He believed that Luther had gone wrong in theology by rejecting philosophy. In 1526 he left Erfurt to join the Augustinians at Würzburg. There he assisted the bishop (Conrad von Thungen), took charge of several monasteries, and preached against Luther. At the diet of Augsburg (1530) he helped examine the Augsburg Confession.

Bibliography: n. hÄring, Die Theologie desB. A. v. Usingen (Limburg 1939). a. goddu, "The use of Dialectical Topica in the 16th and 17th Centuries," Medioevo 24 (1989) 301355. a. zumkeller, "Die Antwort des Erfurter Universitätsprofessor und Augustiners Bartholomaeus von Usingen auf die 'Apologie' des Philipp Melanchthon der 'Confessio Augustana' von 1530," Cor Unum 58 (2000) 2431.

[j. t. graham]

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