Campo Santo Teutonico
CAMPO SANTO TEUTONICO
The oldest of the German national foundations in Rome. It comprises a church, a college for priests, and a cemetery and is situated left of St. Peter's, in the area of nero's circus. According to legend, Empress St. hele na had brought some of the soil of Mt. Calvary to Rome and scattered it in the area of Nero's circus, thus the name Campo Santo (Holy Field). Under charlemagne the Schola Francorum was founded there (799) with a church, a pilgrim's hospice, and a cemetery, where Frankish priests took care of their countrymen and buried their dead.
The Augustinian Johannes Golderer, later auxiliary bishop of Bamberg, founded (c. 1450) the All Souls confraternity for his German countrymen in Rome; its statutes were approved by Pope Pius II in 1461. In 1519
Pope Gregory XIII raised this association to the rank of an arch confraternity with headship over all other similar confraternities. It is still in existence and is the juridical body for Campo Santo.
Today the arch confraternity (Arciconfraternità di Santa Maria della Pietà dei Teutonici e Fiamminghi ) is made up of German-speaking men and women of every class and country living in Rome. They participate in regular church services wearing their national costume. They are especially devoted to assisting at Masses for the poor souls. In the 19th century guilds of German bakers and shoemakers were included in the arch confraternity. In a small cemetery with its cypress and palm trees are graves of many famous persons, e.g., Anton de waal. It is visited annually by thousands of tourists from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands. Here likewise German Catholics of Rome celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi, a celebration in which the papal Swiss Guard joins. November 1 is the major feast of the arch confraternity of the poor souls.
A cruciform hall church was consecrated in 1501. The paintings of the old winged altar are still preserved and are hanging in the choir. The main altar with the Pietà is the creation of Wilhelm Achtermann (d. 1884), as is the marble Resurrection altar on the left side chapel. The tombs of the Swiss Guards who died in 1527 defending Pope clement vii are in the Resurrection chapel. In the 19th century the church was repainted in the Nazarene style. The church has been enriched by various patrons: Franz Joseph of Austria (windows), Emperor Wilhelm II (organ), Pope Leo XIII (candelabra), and Pope John XXIII (a chalice). In 1959 the President of the German Republic, Theodore Heuss, donated a bronze door, which was made according to the design of E. Hillenbrand.
A college for priests was founded in 1876 by De Waal, mainly for young clerics who came to Rome to study Church history and Christian archeology. A special library of 30,000 volumes serves this purpose. In 1888 the Roman Institute of the gÖrres-gesellschaft was founded. It provides scholarly training for the new generation and publishes source material from the vatican archives (e.g., Acts of the Council of trent, papal nunciature reports). In conjunction with the college it also edits the Römische Quartalschrift für christliche Altertumskunde und Kirchengeschichte, with supplementary issues.
The museum houses a collection of Christian antiquities, assembled originally by De Waal. It contains small articles of early Christian art, sarcophagi, inscriptions, lamps, Coptic textile fabrics, Roman imperial coins, and paintings of the Middle Ages. The association Villa Hügel in Essen arranged for the cataloguing of the museum. Displays of its holdings have been held in Essen, Mainz, Mechlin, Utrecht, and Vienna.
Bibliography: p. m. baumgarten, Cartularium vetus Campi Sancti Teutonicorum de Urbe, Römisch Quartalschriftfür christliche Altertumskunde und für Kirchengeschichte (Freiburg 1887–) 16. Suppl. Heft (1908). e. david, Vorgeschichte und Geschichte des Priesterkollegiums am Campo Santo (Freiburg 1928). w. kuhn, Frühchristliche Kunst aus Rom. Katalog, ed. Verein Villa Hügel (Essen 1962). a. schuchert, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 1957–65) 2:912.
[j. e. gugumus]