Braun, Joseph

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Archeologist and liturgist; b. Wipperfürth, Rhineland, Jan. 31, 1857; d. Pullach near Munich, July 8, 1947. He was ordained in 1881 and entered the Society of Jesus in 1890. After much travel and study, he taught archeology and the history of art in the theological scholasticates of his order at Valkenburg, Frankfurt, and Pullach. He was for a long time a collaborator on the Stimmen aus Maria Laach. Without opening essentially new vistas of knowledge, he produced many voluminous works basic to a knowledge of Christian archeology, iconography, and liturgy; they are indispensable to students because of their massive material and their description of literary sources. The monumental two-volume Der christliche Altar in seiner geschichtlichen Entwicklung (Munich 1924) is without doubt his most significant contribution to modern scholarship. His other works, however, are not less important: Die liturgische Gewandung im Occident und Orient nach Ursprung und Entwicklung, Verwendung und Symbolik (Freiburg 1907), Sakramente und Sakramentalien (Regensburg 1922), Liturgisches Handlexikon (2d edition, Regensburg 1924), Das christliche Altargerät in seinem Sein und seiner Entwicklung (Munich 1932), Die Reliquiare des christlichen Kultus und ihre Entwicklung (Freiburg 1940), Tracht und Attribute der Heiligen in der deutschen Kunst (Stuttgart 1943).

Bibliography: Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche (Freiburg 195765) 2:655. Neue deutsche Biographie (Berlin 1953) 2:553.

[b. neunheuser]