Helgesen, Povl (Paulus Heliae)
HELGESEN, POVL (PAULUS HELIAE)
Carmelite controversialist against Lutheranism; b. Varberg, Sweden, c. 1485; d. Denmark, after 1534. From 1519 to 1522 he was a professor of theology at the University of Copenhagen, in 1533 and 1534, at the cathedral school of Roskilde. From 1522 to 1534 he was provincial of the Scandinavian Carmelites. As a Biblical humanist after the manner of Erasmus and Lefèvre d'Etaples, he championed a Catholic reform of the Church; in 1522 he came into conflict with King Christian II. This course of action, together with the defection of many of his former students, brought upon him the accusation of being a Lutheran. However, in the years 1524 to 1534 he appeared as their principal adversary, writing several Latin and Danish polemical works against the Danish and Swedish reformers, translating some works of Erasmus, and editing his letters of St. Paul with annotations. In his chronicle of Skiby (1534) he drew a passionate but truthful picture of the religious and political events in Denmark in which he took an active part as adviser of the bishops. His fate after 1534 is unknown.
Bibliography: Skrifter a Paulus Heliä, ed. m. kristensen et al., 7 v. (Copenhagen 1932–48). l. schmitt, Der Karmeliter Paulus Heliä (Stimmen aus Maria-Laach, Suppl. 60; Freiburg 1893). j. o. andersen, Paulus Helie (Copenhagen 1936). k. valkner, Paulus Helie og Christiern II (Oslo 1963). w. gÖbell, Die Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart, 7 v. (3d ed. Tübingen 1957–65) 3:208. a. otto, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 1957–65) 5:210.