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Ermenrich of Passau


Benedictine, bishop of Passau; b. c. 814; d. Dec. 26,874. He is perhaps to be identified with the Benedictine monk Ermenrich of ellwangen, who was educated at fulda under rabanus maurus and Rudolph, at reichenau under walafrid strabo, and later at sankt gallen. About 840 Ermenrich composed a life of the Anglo-Saxon monk Sualo (whom he calls Solus), based on oral tradition and historically unimportant. In a dialogue modeled on the Consolatio of boethius, he composed for Gozbald, Bishop of Würzburg (841855), a legendary account of the founding of the monastery of Ellwangen by Hariolf. Between 850 and 855, he sent to Grimald, Abbot of Sankt Gallen, a letter in which he discussed a wide variety of subjects from grammar and philosophy to mythology and dogma. Though badly organized and overornate in style, the letter shows the breadth of knowledge to be acquired in the monastic schools of the time, contains important historical data, and supplements the chronicles of Sankt Gallen. When sent by Louis the German on a missionary expedition to the court of boris i of bulgaria (866867), he worked against the influence of SS. cyril and methodius.

Bibliography: e. dÜmmler in Forschungen zur deutschen Geschichte, ed. g. waitz, v.13 (Göttingen 1873) 473485. w. wattenbach, Deutschlands Geschichtsquellen im mittelalter bis zur Mitte des 13 Jh. (Berlin 1894) 1:282284. a. hauck, Kirchengeschichte Deutschlands (Berlin-Leipzig 1958) 2:680681. v. burr, "Ermenrich von Ellwangen," Ellwanger Jahrbuch 16 (1956) 1931; Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner (Freiburg 195765) 3:103132. w. schwarz, "Die Schriften Ermenrichs von Ellwangen," Zeitschrift für Württembergische Landesgeschichte 12 (1953) 181189; 15 (1956) 279281. w. fink, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques 15:759761.

[m. f. mccarthy]

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