Brevicoxa (Jean Courtecuisse)

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Theologian; b. Haleine (Orne), France, mid-14th century; d. Geneva, May 4, 1423. He began his theological studies at the University of Paris in 1367, taught there from 1389, and was dean of the theological faculty from 1416 to 1421. His eloquence and knowledge earned for him the title Doctor Sublimis. He played an important role in bringing the Great Schism of the West to an end. Because of this, Charles VI of France in 1395 and 1396 named him ambassador to the rulers of England and Germany, respectively, in order to enlist their efforts toward putting an end to the rule of the two rival pontiffs. Courtecuisse was met by a peremptory refusal when he asked Benedict XIII to abdicate. In 1398, he became partisan to a movement to withdraw obedience to Benedict. He took part in the Council of Pisa in 1409 and in that of Rome in 1412. His panegyric of the duke of Orléans (Jan. 10, 1414) drew upon him the hatred of the duke of Bourgogne, and this led him to join the ranks of the Armagnacs. His election as bishop of Paris was confirmed by Martin V (June 16, 1421) contrary to the wishes of the English crown, which supported another candidate. The hostility of the king of England toward him was such that he had to be transferred to the see of Geneva (June 12, 1422). In his Tractatus de fide et ecclesia, de Romano pontifice et concilio generali, he teaches the superiority of the council over the pope.

Bibliography: a. coville, "Recherches sur Jean Courtecuisse," Bibliothèque de l'École des Chartres 65 (1904) 469529. n. valois, La France et le grand schisme d'Occident, 4v. (Paris 18961902) v. 3-4. a. coville, Jean Petit (Paris 1932). a. bigelmair, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche (Freiburg 195765) 5:1011-12. e. mangenot, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique (Paris 190350) 3.2:1984-85. g. mollat, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques (Paris 1912) 13:953954.

[g. mollat]