Jordan of Quedlinburg

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Augustinian scholar and author; b. Quedlinburg, Saxony, Germany, c. 1300; d. Vienna, Austria, 1380. He was a student of henry of friemar, of Hermann of Halle (d. 1334), and of Prosper of Reggio (c. 1318). He lectured in the Augustinian monasteries of Erfurt and Magdeburg and in other German houses of the order, including the provincial of Saxony from 1341 to 1351, where he was instrumental in the reorganization of the augustinians and in their transformation into a mendicant order. The difficulties of this undertaking are partly recorded in his writings. However, his chief influence lies in his spirituality, for he was considered to be a master of the spiritual life. He deplored the ascetic exaggerations that were typical of his times; his writings reflect the strong influence of German mysticism on his thought. He was also renowned as a preacher, and collections of his sermons were widely used during the late Middle Ages. Perhaps his most important work, one of the most celebrated ascetical treatises of the 14th century, was the Vitasfratrum (Rome 1587), which influenced the spiritual reform of the order and provides valuable evidence of its early history. It is disputed whether he lived and died in Vienna; indeed, some scholars have placed his death in Vienne, France. However, many important Augustinians connected with him were members of the Viennese convent, attracted there by the new University of vienna, founded in 1365.

Bibliography: Works. Liber vitasfratrum, ed. r. arbesmann and w. hÜmpfner (New York 1943). Opus postillarum et sermonum de tempore (Strasbourg 1483). Sermones de sanctis (Paris 1484). Collectanea seu Speculum Augustinianum (Paris 1686). Tractatus de spiritu libertatis (lost). Expositio dominicae orationis (manuscript). Literature. r. lievens, J. van Quedlinburg in de Nederlanden (Ghent 1958). f. rennhofer, Die Augustiner-Eremiten in Wien (Würzburg 1956). a. zumkeller in Sanctus Augustinus vitae spiritualis magister, 2 v. (Rome 1959) v.2. e. saak, "Quidlibet christianus. Saints and Society in the Sermons of Jordan of Quedlinburg OESA," in Models of Holiness in Medieval Sermons (Louvain-la-Neuve 1996) 317338; "The Creation of Augustinian Identity in the Later Middle Ages, Parts I and II," Augustiniana 49 (1999) 109164, 251286.

[w. m. plÖchl]