Berthold of Chiemsee (Berthold Pürstinger)

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Bishop and theologian; b. Salzburg, 1465; d. Saalfelden, July 16, 1543. Berthold, a fine sensitive person of high character and a skilled writer, was a late medieval ecclesiastical reformer. He studied canon law in Perugia, became a priest at Schnaitsee and Stellung, and was made prince-bishop of Chiemsee (1508) and suffragan bishop of Salzburg. He mediated between the burghers of Salzburg and the archbishop in 1511, and between the rebellious peasants and Cardinal Matthäus Lang, the Archbishop (152426). Depressed by the outrages of the revolutionaries, he resigned on May 11, 1526, and withdrew to the Cistercian monastery at Raitenhaslach and then to a hostel and chapel in Saalfelden, which he had built (completed 1541) for a brotherhood of retired priests and for poor laymen. He wrote a Tewtsche Theologey (Munich 1528), the first German dogmatics based on scripture and St. Thomas Aquinas, for the education of priests and laymen. His Tewtsche Rational über das Ambt heiliger Mess and his Keligpuechl (both 1535) defended the Mass and Communion under one species against the Protestant reformers.

Bibliography: r. bauerreiss, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 vol. (2d new ed. Freiburg, 195765) 2:265266. k. eder, Neue deutsche biographie (Berlin 1953) 2:162, with good bibliog. Allgemeine deutsche Biographie (Leipzig 18751910) 2:519.

[l. w. spitz]